Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6
                               Journal of Discourses,
                                      Volume 6
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Joseph
          Smith, April 6, 1844
                             Joseph Smith, April 6, 1844
                       A Discourse, by President Joseph Smith, 
                  delivered at the Conference held near the Temple,
                              in Nauvoo, April 6, 1844.
          Reported by W. Richards, W. Woodruff, T. Bullock, and W. Clayton
          Beloved Saints,--I will call the attention of this congregation
          while I address you on the subject of the dead. The decease of
          our beloved brother, Elder King Follett, who was crushed in a
          well by the falling of a tub of rock, has more immediately led me
          to that subject. I have been requested to speak by his friends
          and relatives; but inasmuch as there are a great many in this
          congregation who live in this city, as well as elsewhere, who
          have lost friends, I feel disposed to speak on the subject in
          general, and offer you my ideas so far as I have ability and so
          far as I shall be inspired by the Holy Spirit to dwell on this
          I want your prayers and faith that I may have the instruction of
          Almighty God and the gift of the Holy Ghost, so that I may set
          forth things that are true and which can be easily comprehended
          by you, and that the testimony many carry conviction to your
          hearts and minds of the truth of what I shall say. Pray that the
          Lord may strengthen my lungs, stay the winds, and let the prayers
          of the Saints to heaven appear, that they may enter into the ears
          of the Lord of Sabaoth; for the effectual prayers of the
          righteous avail much. There is strength here; and I verily
          believe that your prayers will be heard. 
          Before I enter fully into the investigation of the subject which
          is lying before me, I wish to pave the way and bring up the
          subject from the beginning, that you may understand it. I will
          make a few preliminaries, in order that you may understand the
          subject when I come to it. I do not calculate or intend to please
          your ears with superfluity of words, or oratory, or with much
          learning; but I calculate to edify you with the simple truths
          from heaven. 
          In the first place, I wish to go back to the beginning--to the
          morn of creation. There is the starting-point for us to look to,
          in order to understand and be fully acquainted with the mind,
          purposes, and decrees of the great Eloheim, who sits in yonder
          heavens as he did at the creation of this world. It is necessary
          for us to have an understanding of God himself in the beginning.
          If we start right, it is easy to go right all the time; but if we
          start wrong, we may go wrong, and it will be a hard matter to get
          There are but a very few beings in the world who understand
          rightly the character of God. The great majority of mankind do
          not comprehend anything, either that which is past or that which
          is to come, as respects their relationship to God. They do not
          know, neither do they understand the nature of that relationship;
          and, consequently, they know but little above the brute beast, or
          more than to eat, drink, and sleep. This is all man knows about
          God or his existence, unless it is given by the inspiration of
          the almighty.
          If a man learns nothing more than to eat, drink, and sleep, and
          does not comprehend any of the designs of God, the beast
          comprehends the same thing. It eats, drinks, sleeps, and knows
          nothing more about God: yet it knows as much as we, unless we are
          able to comprehend by the inspiration of Almighty God. If men do
          not comprehend the character of God they do not comprehend
          themselves. I want to go back to the beginning, and so lift your
          minds into a more lofty sphere and a more exalted understanding
          than what the human mind generally aspires to. 
          I want to ask this congregation--every man, women, and child, to
          answer the question in their own heart, what kind of a being God
          is? Ask yourselves; turn your thoughts into your hearts, and say
          if any of you have seen, heard, or communed with him. This is a
          question that may occupy your attention for a long time. I again
          repeat the question--What kind of a being is God? Does any man or
          woman know? Have any of you seen him, heard him, or communed with
          him? Here is the question that will peradventure from this time
          henceforth occupy your attention. The Scriptures inform us that
          "This is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true
          God and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent."
          If any man does not know God, and inquires what kind of a being
          he is,--if he will search diligently his own heart--if the
          declarations of Jesus and the Apostles be true--he will realize
          that he has not eternal life; for there can be eternal life on no
          other principle. 
          My first object is to find out the character of the only wise and
          true God, and what kind of a being he is; and if I am so
          fortunate as to be the man to comprehend God, and explain or
          convey the principles to your hearts, so that the Spirit seals
          them upon you, then let every man and woman henceforth sit in
          silence, put their hands on their mouths, and never lift their
          hands or voices or say anything against the man of God or the
          servants of God again. But if I fail to do it, it becomes my duty
          to renounce all further pretensions to revelations, inspirations,
          or to be a Prophet; and I should be like the rest of the world--a
          false teacher, be hailed as a friend, and no man would seek my
          life. But if all religious teachers were honest enough to
          renounce their pretensions to godliness, when their ignorance of
          the knowledge of God is made manifest, they will all be as badly
          off as I am, at any rate; and you might just as well take the
          lives of other false teachers as that of mine, if I am false. If
          any man is authorized to take away my life because he thinks and
          says I am a false teacher, then, upon the same principle, we
          should be justified in taking away the life of every false
          teacher; and where would be the end of blood? and who would not
          be the sufferer?
          But meddle not with any man for his religion; and all governments
          ought to permit every man to enjoy his religion unmolested. No
          man is authorized to take away life in consequence of difference
          of religion, which all laws and governments ought to tolerate and
          protect, right or wrong. Every man has a natural and, in our
          country, a constitutional right to be a false prophet as well as
          a true prophet. If I show, verily, that I have the truth of God,
          and show that ninety-nine out of every hundred professing
          religious ministers are false teachers, having no authority,
          while they pretend to hold the keys of God's kingdom on earth,
          and was to kill them because they are false teachers, it would
          deluge the whole world with blood. 
          I will prove that the world is wrong, by showing what God is. I
          am going to inquire after God; for I want you all to know him and
          to be familiar with him; and if I can bring you to a knowledge of
          him, all persecutions against me ought to cease. You will then
          know that I am his servant; for I speak as one having authority.
          I will go back to the beginning, before the world was, to show
          what kind of a being God is. What sort of a being was God in the
          beginning? Open your ears and hear, all ye ends of the earth; for
          I am going to prove it to you by the Bible, and to tell you the
          designs of God in relation to the human race, and why he
          interferes with the affairs of man. 
          God himself was once as we are now, and is an exalted Man, and
          sits enthroned in yonder heavens. That is the great secret. If
          the vail was rent to-day, and the great God who holds this world
          in its orbit, and who upholds all worlds and all things by his
          power, was to make himself visible,--I say, if you were to see
          him to-day, you would see him like a man in form--like
          yourselves, in all the person, image, and very form as a man; for
          Adam was created in the very fashion, image, and likeness of God,
          and received instruction from, and walked, talked, and conversed
          with him, as one man talks and communes with another. 
          In order to understand the subject of the dead, for the
          consolation of those who mourn for the loss of their friends, it
          is necessary that we should understand the character and being of
          God, and how he came to be so; for I am going to tell you how God
          came to be God. We have imagined and supposed that God was God
          from all eternity, I will refute that idea, and will take away
          and do away the vail, so that you may see. 
          These are incomprehensible ideas to some; but they are simple. It
          is the first principle of the Gospel to know for a certainty the
          character of God and to know that we may converse with him as one
          man converses with another, and that he was once a man like us;
          yea, that God himself the Father of us all, dwelt on an earth the
          same as Jesus Christ himself did; and I will show it from the
          Bible. I wish I was in a suitable place to tell it, and that I
          had the trump of an archangel, so that I could tell the story in
          such a manner that persecution would cease for ever. What did
          Jesus say? (Mark it, Elder Rigdon.) The Scriptures inform us that
          Jesus said, "As the Father hath power in himself, even so hath
          the Son power"--to do what? Why, what the Father did. The answer
          is obvious--in a manner, to lay down his body and take it up
          again. Jesus, what are you going to do? To lay down my life, as
          my Father did, and take it up again. Do you believe it? If you do
          not believe it, you do not believe the Bible. The Scriptures say
          it, and I defy all the learning and wisdom and all the combined
          powers of earth and hell together to refute it. 
          Here, then, is eternal life--to know the only wise and true God;
          and you have got to learn how to be Gods yourselves, and to be
          kings and priests to God, the same as all Gods have done before
          you,--namely, by going from one small degree to another, and from
          a small capacity to a great one,--from grace to grace, from
          exaltation to exaltation, until you attain to the resurrection of
          the dead, and are able to dwell in everlasting burnings and to
          sit in glory, as do those who sit enthroned in everlasting power.
          And I want you to know that God, in the last days, while certain
          individuals are proclaiming his name, is not trifling with you or
          These are the first principles of consolation. How consoling to
          the mourners, when they are called to part with a husband, wife,
          father, mother, child, or dear relative, to know that, although
          the earthly tabernacle is laid down and dissolved, they shall
          rise again, to dwell in everlasting burnings in immortal glory,
          not to sorrow, suffer, or die any more; but they shall be heirs
          of God and joint-heirs with Jesus Christ. What is it? To inherit
          the same power, the same glory, and the same exaltation, until
          you arrive at the station of a God and ascend the throne of
          eternal power, the same as those who have gone before. What did
          Jesus do? Why, I do the things I saw my Father do when worlds
          come rolling into existence. My Father worked out his kingdom
          with fear and trembling, and I must do the same; and when I get
          my kingdom, I shall present it to my Father, so that he may
          obtain kingdom upon kingdom, and it will exalt him in glory. He
          will then take a higher exaltation, and I will take his place,
          and thereby become exalted myself. So that Jesus treads in the
          track of his Father, and inherits what God did before; and God is
          thus glorified and exalted in the salvation and exaltation of all
          his children. It is plain beyond disputation; and you thus learn
          some of the first principles of the Gospel, about which so much
          hath been said. 
          When you climb a ladder, you must begin at the bottom, and ascend
          step by step until you arrive at the top; and so it is with the
          principles of the Gospel: you must begin with the first, and go
          on until you learn all the principles of exaltation. But it will
          be a great while after you have passed through the vail before
          you will have learned them. It is not all to be comprehended in
          this world: it will be a great work to learn our salvation and
          exaltation even beyond the grave. I suppose I am not allowed to
          go into an investigation of anything that is not contained in the
          Bible. If I did, I think there are so many over-wise men here,
          that they would cry "treason" and put me to death. So I will go
          to the old Bible and turn commentator to-day.
          I shall comment on the very first Hebrew word in the Bible. I
          will make a comment on the very first sentence of the history of
          creation in the Bible--Berosheit. I want to analyze the word.
          Baith--in, by, through, and everything else. Rosh--the head.
          Sheit--grammatical termination. When the inspired man wrote it,
          he did not put the Baith there. An old Jew, without any
          authority, added the word. He thought it too bad to begin to talk
          about the head! It read first, "The head one of the Gods brought
          forth the Gods." That is the true meaning of the words. Baurau
          signified to bring forth. If you do not believe it, you do not
          believe the learned man of God. Learned men can teach you no more
          than what I have told you. Thus, the head God brought forth the
          Gods in the grand council. 
          I will transpose and simplify if in the English language. Oh, ye
          lawyers, ye doctors, and ye priests, who have persecuted me, I
          want to let you know that the Holy Ghost knows something as well
          as you do. The head God called together the Gods and sat in grand
          council to bring forth the world. The grand counsellors sat at
          the head in yonder heavens, and contemplated the creation of the
          worlds which were created at that time. When I say doctors and
          lawyers, I mean the doctors and lawyers of the Scriptures. I have
          done so hitherto without explanation, to let the lawyers flutter,
          and everybody laugh at them. Some learned doctor might take a
          notion to say the Scriptures say thus and so; and we must believe
          the Scriptures; they are not to be altered. But I am going to
          show you an error in them. 
          I have an old edition of the New Testament in the Hebrew, Latin,
          German, and Greek languages. I have been reading the German, and
          find it to be the most correct translation, and to correspond
          nearest to the revelations which God has given to me for the last
          fourteen years. It tells about Jachoboy, the son of Zebedee. It
          means Jacob. In the English New Testament it is translated James.
          Now, if Jacob had the keys, you might talk about James through
          all eternity, and never get the keys. In the 21st verse of the
          fourth chapter of Matthew, my old German edition gives the word
          Jacob instead of James. 
          The doctors (I mean doctors of law, not of physic,) say, "If you
          preach anything not according to the Bible, we will cry treason."
          How can we escape the damnation of hell, except God be with us
          and reveal to us? Men bind us with chains. The Latin says
          Jachabod, which means Jacob; the Hebrew says Jacob, the Creek
          says Jacob, and the German says Jacob. Here we have the testimony
          of four against one. I thank God I have got this old book; but I
          thank him more for the gift of the Holy Ghost. I have got the
          oldest book in the world; but I have got the oldest book in my
          heart, even the gift of the Holy Ghost. I have all the four
          Testaments. Come here, ye learned men, and read, if you can. I
          should not have introduced this testimony, were it not to back up
          the word Rosh--the head, the father of the Gods. I should not
          have brought it up, only to show that I am right.
          In the beginning, the head of the Gods called a council of the
          Gods; and they came together and concocted a plan to create the
          world and people it. When we begin to learn in this way, we begin
          to learn the only true God and what kind of a being we have got
          to worship. Having a knowledge of God, we begin to know how to
          approach him and how to ask so as to receive an answer. 
          When we understand the character of God and know how to come to
          him, he begins to unfold the heavens to us and to tell us all
          about it. When we are ready to come to him, he is ready to come
          to us. 
          Now, I ask all who hear me, why the learned men who are preaching
          salvation say that God created the heavens and the earth out of
          nothing? The reason is, that they are unlearned in the things of
          God and have not the gift of the Holy Ghost. They account it
          blasphemy in any one to contradict their idea. If you tell them
          that God made the world out of something, they will call you a
          fool. But I am learned, and know more than all the world put
          together. The Holy Ghost does, anyhow; and he is within me, and
          comprehends more than all the world; and I will associate myself
          with him.
               You ask the learned doctors why they say the world was made
          out of nothing; and they will answer, "Don't the Bible say he
          created the world?" And they infer, from the word create, that it
          must have been made out of nothing. How, the word create came
          from the word baurau, which does not mean to create out of
          nothing; it means to organize--the same as a man would organize
          materials and build a ship. Hence we infer that God had materials
          to organize the world out of chaos--chaotic matter, which is
          element, and in which dwells all the glory. Element had an
          existence from the time He had. The pure principles of element
          are principles which can never be destroyed: they may be
          organized and re-organized, but not destroyed. They had no
          beginning, and can have no end. 
          I have another subject to dwell upon, which is calculated to
          exalt man. But it is impossible for me to say much on this
          subject. I shall, therefore, just touch upon it; for time will
          not permit me to say all. It is associated with the subject of
          the resurrection of the dead--namely, the soul, the mind of man,
          the immortal spirit. Where did it come from? All learned men and
          doctors of divinity say that God created it in the beginning. But
          it is not so. The very idea lessons man in my estimation. I do
          not believe the doctrine. I know better. Here it, all ye ends of
          the world; for God has told me so; and if you don't believe me,
          it will not make the truth without effect. I will make a man
          appear a fool before I get through, if he does not believe it. I
          am going to tell of things more noble. 
          We say that God himself is a self-existent being. Who told you
          so? It is correct enough; but how did it get into your heads? Who
          told you that man did not exist in like manner upon the same
          principles? Man does exist upon the same principles. God made a
          tabernacle and put a spirit into it, and it became a living soul.
          [Referred to the old Bible.] How does it read in the Hebrew? It
          does not say in the Hebrew that God created the spirit of man. It
          says, "God made man out of the earth, and put into him Adam's
          spirit, and so became a living body."
          The mind or the intelligence which man possesses is coequal with
          God himself. I know that my testimony is true; hence, when I talk
          to these mourners, what have they lost? Their relatives and
          friends are only separated from their bodies for a short season:
          their spirits which existed with God have left the tabernacle of
          clay only for a little moment, as it were; and they now exist in
          a place where they converse together the same as we do on the
          I am dwelling on the immortality of the spirit of man. Is it
          logical to say that the intelligence of spirits is immortal, and
          yet that it had a beginning? The intelligence of spirits had no
          beginning, neither will it have an end. That is good logic. That
          which has a beginning may have an end. There never was a time
          when there were not spirits; for they are co-equal with our
          Father in heaven. 
          I want to reason more on the spirit of man; for I am dwelling on
          the body and spirit of man--on the subject of the dead. I take my
          ring from my finger and liken it unto the mind of man--the
          immortal part, because it has no beginning. Suppose you cut it in
          two, then it has a beginning and an end; but join it again, and
          it continues one eternal round. So with the spirit of man. As the
          Lord liveth, if it had a beginning it will have an end. All the
          fools and learned and wise men from the beginning of creation,
          who say that the spirit of man had a beginning, prove that it
          must have an end; and if that doctrine is true, then the doctrine
          of annihilation would be true. But if I am right, I might with
          boldness proclaim from the housetops that God never had the power
          to create the spirit of man at all. God himself could not create
          Intelligence is eternal and exists upon a self-existent
          principle. It is a spirit from age to age, and there is no
          creation about it. All the minds and spirits that God ever sent
          into the world are susceptible of enlargement. 
          The first principles of man are self-existent with God. God
          himself, finding he was in the midst of spirits and glory,
          because he was more intelligent, saw proper to institute laws
          whereby the rest could have a privilege to advance like himself.
          The relationship we have with God places us in a situation to
          advance in knowledge. He has power to institute laws to instruct
          the weaker intelligences, that they may be exalted with himself,
          so that they might have one glory upon another, and all that
          knowledge, power, glory, and intelligence which is requisite in
          order to save them in the world of spirits. 
          This is good doctrine. It tastes good. I can taste the principles
          of eternal life, and so can you. They are given to me by the
          revelations of Jesus Christ; and I know that when I tell you
          these words of eternal life as they are given to me, you taste
          them, and I know you believe them. You say honey is sweet, and so
          do I. I can also taste the spirit of eternal life. I know it is
          good; and when I tell you of these things which were given me by
          inspiration of the Holy Spirit, you are bound to receive them as
          sweet, and I rejoice more and more.
          I want to talk more of the relation of man to God. I will open
          your eyes in relation to your dead. All things whatsoever God of
          his infinite wisdom has seen fit and proper to reveal to us,
          while we are dwelling in mortality, in regard to our mortal
          bodies, are revealed to us in the abstract and independent of
          affinity of this mortal tabernacle; but are revealed to our
          spirits precisely as though we had no bodies at all; and those
          revelations which will save our spirits will save our bodies. God
          reveals them to us in view of no eternal dissolution of the body,
          or tabernacle. Hence the responsibility--the awful responsibility
          that rests upon us in relation to our dead; for all the spirits
          who have not obeyed the Gospel in the flesh must either obey it
          in the spirit or be damned. Solemn thought!--dreadful thought! Is
          there nothing to be done? No preparation--no salvation for our
          fathers and friends who have died without having had the
          opportunity to obey the decrees of the Son of Man? Would to God
          that I had forty days and nights in which to tell you all! I
          would let you know that I am not a "fallen prophet."
          What promises are made in relation to the subject of the
          salvation of the dead? and what kind of characters are those who
          can be saved, although their bodies are mouldering and decaying
          in the grave? When his commandments teach us, it is in view of
          eternity; for we are looked upon by God as though we were in
          eternity. God dwells in eternity, and does not view things as we
          The greatest responsibility in this world that God has laid upon
          us is to seek after our dead. The Apostle says, "They without us
          cannot be made perfect;" for it is necessary that the sealing
          power should be in our hands to seal our children and our dead
          for the fulness of the dispensation of times--a dispensation to
          meet the promises made by Jesus Christ before the foundation of
          the world for the salvation of man.
          Now, I will speak of them. I will meet Paul half-way. I say to
          you, Paul, you cannot be perfect without us. It is necessary that
          those who are gone before and those who come after us should have
          salvation in common with us; and thus hath God made it obligatory
          upon man. Hence God said, "I will send Elijah the prophet before
          the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord; and he
          shall turn the hearts of the fathers to the children and the
          hearts of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite
          the earth with a curse."
          I have a declaration to make as to the provisions which God hath
          made to suit the conditions of man, made from before the
          foundation of the world. What has Jesus said? All sins, and all
          blasphemies, and every transgression, except one, that man can be
          guilty of, may be forgiven; and there is a salvation for all men,
          either in this world or the world to come, who have not committed
          the unpardonable sin, there being a provision either in this
          world or the world of spirits. Hence God hath made a provision
          that every spirit in the eternal world can be ferreted out and
          saved, unless he has committed that unpardonable sin which cannot
          be remitted to him either in this world or the world of spirits.
          God has wrought out a salvation for all men, unless they have
          committed a certain sin; and every man who has a friend in the
          eternal world can save him, unless he has committed the
          unpardonable sin. And so you can see how far you can be a
          A man cannot commit the unpardonable sin after the dissolution of
          the body, and there is a way possible for escape. Knowledge saves
          a man; and in the world of spirits no man can be exalted but by
          knowledge. So long as a man will not give heed to the
          commandments, he must abide without salvation. If a man has
          knowledge, he can be saved; although, if he has been guilty of
          great sins, he will be punished for them. But when he consents to
          obey the Gospel, whether here or in the world of spirits, he is
          A man is his own tormentor and his own condemner. Hence the
          saying, They shall go into the lake that burns with fire and
          brimstone. The torment of disappointment in the mind of man is as
          exquisite as a lake burning with fire and brimstone. I say, so is
          the torment of man.
          I know the Scriptures and understand them. I said no man can
          commit the unpardonable sin after the dissolution of the body,
          nor in this life until he received the Holy Ghost; but they must
          do it in this world. Hence the salvation of Jesus Christ was
          wrought out for all men in order to triumph over the Devil; for
          if it did not catch him in one place, it would in another; for he
          stood up as a Saviour. All will suffer until they obey Christ
          The contention in heaven was--Jesus said there would be certain
          souls that would not be saved; and the Devil said he could save
          them all, and laid his plans before the grand council, who gave
          their vote in favour of Jesus Christ. So the Devil rose up in
          rebellion against God, and was cast down, with all who put up
          their heads for him.
          All sins shall be forgiven except the sin against the Holy Ghost;
          for Jesus will save all except the sons of perdition. What must a
          man do to commit the unpardonable sin? He must receive the Holy
          Ghost, have the heavens opened unto him, and know God, and then
          sin against him. After a man has sinned against the Holy Ghost,
          there is no repentance for him. He has got to say that the sun
          does not shine while he sees it; he has got to deny Jesus Christ
          when the heavens have been opened unto him, and to deny the plan
          of salvation with his eyes open to the truth of it; and from that
          time he begins to be an enemy. This is the case with many
          apostates of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
          When a man begins to be an enemy to this work, he hunts me; he
          seeks to kill me, and never ceases to thirst for my blood. He
          gets the spirit of the Devil--the same spirit that they had who
          crucified the Lord of Life,--the same spirit that sins against
          the Holy Ghost. You cannot save such persons; you cannot bring
          them to repentance: they make open war like the Devil, and awful
          is the consequence.
          I advise all of you to be careful what you do, or you may
          by-and-by find out that you have been deceived. Stay yourselves;
          do not give way; don't make any hasty moves: you may be be saved.
          If a spirit of bitterness is in you, don't be in haste. You may
          say that man is a sinner. Well, if he repents, he shall be
          forgiven. Be cautious: await! When you find a spirit what wants
          bloodshed--murder, the same is not of God, but is of the Devil.
          Out of the abundance of the heart of man the mouth speaketh. 
          The best men bring forth the best works. The man who tells you
          words of life is the man who can save you. I warn you against all
          evil characters who sin against the Holy Ghost; for there is no
          redemption for them in this world nor in the world to come. 
          I could go back and trace every subject of interest concerning
          the relationship of man to God, if I had time. I can enter into
          the mysteries; I can enter largely into the eternal worlds; for
          Jesus said, "In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were
          not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you."
          (John 14th chap., 2nd v.) Paul says, "There is one glory of the
          sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the
          stars; for one star differeth from another star in glory. So also
          is the resurrection of the dead." (1st Cor. 15th chap., 41st v.)
          What have we to console us in relation to the dead? We have
          reason to have the greatest hope and consolations for our dead of
          any people on the earth; for we have seen them walk worthily in
          our midst, and seen them sink asleep in the arms of Jesus; and
          those who have died in the faith are now in the celestial kingdom
          of God. And hence is the glory of the sun. 
          You mourners have occasion to rejoice (speaking of the death of
          Elder King Follett); for your husband and father is gone to wait
          until the resurrection of the dead--until the perfection of the
          remainder; for at the resurrection your friend will rise in
          perfect felicity and go to celestial glory, while many must wait
          myriads of years before they can receive the like blessings; and
          your expectations and hopes are far above what man can conceive;
          for why has God revealed it to us?
          I AM AUTHORIZED to say, by the authority of the Holy Ghost, that
          you have no occasion to fear; for he is gone to the home of the
          just. Don't mourn; don't weep. I know it by the testimony of the
          Holy Ghost that is within me; and you may wait for your friends
          to come forth to meet you in the morn of the celestial world. 
          Rejoice, O Israel! Your friends who have been murdered for the
          truth's sake in the persecution shall triumph gloriously in the
          celestial world, while their murderers shall welter for ages in
          torment, even until they shall have paid the uttermost farthing.
          I say this for the benefit of strangers.
          I have a father, brothers, children, and friends who have gone to
          a world of spirits. They are only absent for a moment. They are
          in the spirit, and we shall soon meet again. The time will soon
          arrive when the trumpet shall sound. When we depart, we shall
          hail our mothers, fathers, friends, and all whom we love who have
          fallen asleep in Jesus. There will be no fear of mobs,
          persecutions, or malicious law-suits and arrests; but it will be
          an eternity of felicity.
          A question may be asked--"Will mothers have their children in
          eternity?" Yes! yes! Mothers, you shall have your children; for
          they shall have eternal life; for their debt is paid. There is no
          damnation awaits them, for they are in the spirit. But as the
          child dies, so shall it rise from the dead, and be for ever
          living in the learning of God. It will never grow: it will still
          be the child, in the same precise form as it appeared before it
          died out of its mother's arms, but possessing all the
          intelligence of a God. Children dwell in the mansions of glory
          and exercise power, but appear in the same form as when on earth.
          Eternity is full of thrones, upon which dwell thousands of
          children reigning on thrones of glory, with not one cubit added
          to their stature. 
          I will leave this subject here, and make a few remarks on the
          subject of baptism. The baptism of water, without the baptism of
          fire and the Holly Ghost attending it, is of no use: they are
          necessary and inseparably connected. An individual must be born
          of water and the spirit in order to get into the kingdom of God.
          In the German, the text bears me out the same as the revelations
          which I have given and taught for the last fourteen years on that
          subject. I have the testimony to put in their teeth. My testimony
          has been true all the time. You will find it in the declaration
          of John the Baptist. [Reads from the German.] John says, "I
          baptise you with water; but when Jesus comes, who has the power
          (or keys), he shall administer the baptism of fire and the Holy
          Ghost." Great God! where is now all the sectarian world? And if
          this testimony is true, they are all damned as clearly as
          anathema can do it. I know the text is true. I call upon all you
          Germans who know that it is true to say aye. (Loud shouts of
          Alexander Campbell, how are you going to save people with water
          alone? For John said his baptism was good for nothing without the
          baptism of Jesus Christ. "Therefore, not leaving the principles
          of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection, not
          laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of
          faith toward God, of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on
          of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal
          judgment. And this will we do, if God permit." (Heb. 6th chap.,
          1st to 3rd v.)
          There is one God, one Father, one Jesus, one hope of our calling,
          one baptism. All these three baptisms only make one. Many talk of
          baptism not being essential to salvation: but this kind of
          teaching would lay the foundation of their damnation. I have the
          truth, and am at the defiance of the world to contradict me if
          they can. 
          I have now preached a little Latin, a little Hebrew, Greek, and
          German; and I have fulfilled all. I am not so big a fool as many
          have taken me to be. The Germans know that I read the German
          Hear it, all ye ends of the earth--all ye priests, all ye
          sinners, and all men. Repent! repent! Obey the Gospel. Turn to
          God; for your religion won't save you, and you will be damned. I
          do not say how long. There have been remarks made concerning all
          men being redeemed from hell; but I say that those who sin
          against the Holy Ghost cannot be forgiven in this world or in the
          world to come: they shall die the second death. Those who commit
          the unpardonable sin are doomed to Gnolom, to dwell in hell,
          worlds without end. As they concoct scenes of bloodshed in this
          world, so they shall rise to that resurrection which is as the
          lake of fire and brimstone. Some shall rise to the everlasting
          burning of God; for God dwells in everlasting burnings; and some
          shall rise to the damnation of their own filthiness, which is as
          exquisite a torment a the lake of fire and brimstone. 
          I have intended my remarks for all, both rich and poor, bond and
          free, great and small. I have no enmity against any man. I love
          you all; but I have some of your deeds. I am your best friend;
          and if persons miss their mark, it is their own fault. If I
          reprove a man and he hates me, he is a fool; for I love all men,
          especially these my brethren and sisters. 
          I rejoice in hearing the testimony of my aged friends. You don't
          know me: you never knew my heart. No man knows my history. I
          cannot tell it: I shall never undertake it. I don't blame any one
          for not believing my history. If I had not experienced what I
          have, I could not have believed it myself. I never did harm any
          man since I was born into the world. My voice is always for
          I cannot lie down until all my work is finished. I never think
          any evil, nor do anything to the harm of my fellow-man. When I am
          called by the trump of the archangel and weighed in the balance,
          you will all know me then. I add no more. God bless you all.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Orson
                                     Orson Hyde
                          A Discourse by Elder Orson Hyde.
          Dear Brethren and Sisters,--I am highly pleased with the
          privilege I now enjoy of speaking to you. I wish to call your
          attention to a subject which, to me, is of vast importance, and
          no less so to you. 
          The commencement of what has been termed our reformation was more
          than a year ago; and first attended with the desire only of
          correcting some irregularities among us and of awakening the
          Saints to righteousness, to purity of life, to sanctification,
          and holiness before the Lord. Our efforts were attended with
          results highly satisfactory to the upright and the good. We were
          led on by this spirit of reformation to expose and rebuke the
          evils of those among us who did not belong to the Latter-day
          Saints. This kind of preaching made them angry; yet their anger
          did not cause us to soften our speech or to modify the tone of
          high moral sentiment which we wished and were determined should
          be enforced. "Rebuke a wise man, and he will love you; but rebuke
          a wicked man, and he will hate you." This truth we saw abundantly
          exemplified. Their pens were then set in operation against us,
          and many false accusations were sent to the States by them, over
          fictitious names, no names at all, and also over their own real
          names. But the latter class, not being fortified with truth and
          honesty, felt unable to endure the just frowns of a community so
          belied. They had recourse to flight; and then told the awful and
          pitiful tale in the States, that they barely escaped with their
          lives,--a fine cover for their unrighteous deeds. They hoped by
          this feint and hypocritical pretension to excite public sympathy
          in their favour, and to arouse indignation against the Saints.
          Jesus spoke plainly of just such persons, saying: "Ye are they
          who justify yourselves before men; but God knoweth your hearts;
          for that which is highly esteemed among men is an abomination in
          the sight of God."
          For this very plain preaching, which they were compelled to hear
          or hear of, they threatened us with troops of the United States;
          and they left no stone unturned to excite the Government to send
          troops. This idea was a momentary damper upon some spirits; but
          sober second thought asked the question--"Shall I, through fear
          of an army being sent here, be guilty of collusion with sin and
          of failure to expose and rebuke it?" The noble-minded and
          fearless servants of God said, "No! No!! No!!!" The work of
          reformation and purification went gloriously on; and by-and-by
          the word of assurance and comfort came to us through our Prophet
          and Seer--the fearless Brigham, who dares to do right--"Sanctify
          yourselves before me; put iniquity far from you; assert your
          rights, and stand up to them; and behold, and lo! I will fight
          your battles, and the children of Zion shall be victorious; and
          the name of your God shall be magnified in the eyes of your
          enemies. Trust in me; be valiant and fear not, and the kingdom is
          yours." I may not repeat the word of the Lord through his servant
          verbatim, but give it according to memory. I am not, however, far
          On the 24th day of July last, rumour came to us that United
          States' troops were actually being fitted out to come here to
          chastise us. Just ten years ago that very day, when the pioneers
          first entered the valley, brother Brigham said, in view of the
          injustice and cruelty inflicted upon us by our enemies, "If the
          United States will now let this people alone for ten years to
          come, we will ask no odds of them or any one else but God." The
          saying passed out of his mind and out of the minds of the
          pioneers who heard it, until ten years from the very time, when
          he and some thousands of others were in Big Cottonwood Kanyon,
          celebrating the tenth anniversary of the Saints' entrance into
          this valley.
          This announcement of troops by the express brought the saying
          vividly to many of the minds of the old pioneers. No heart
          appeared sad--no countenance gloomy; but the lamp of joy was
          evidently lit in every heart and blazed in every countenance. We
          regarded it as an omen of deliverance by the arm of the Almighty.
          From that very hour the prayers of this entire people, old and
          young, male and female, by day and by night, have been and still
          are offered up unto the God of heaven, in the name of his son,
          Jesus Christ, that the army sent here by the United States may
          never be able to accomplish their design; for the design of the
          Government in sending them, and that too, upon evidence known to
          be incorrect, proved to us that iniquity was to be sustained and
          righteousness suppressed. Will our prayers be heard and answered?
          I believe they will. I do believe that God is about to come out
          of his hiding-place and to vex the nation according to his word
          through the martyred Joseph (See Book of Covenants, second
          European edition, page 282.) Do I believe that the United States
          will be divided? Yes, I do; and the prayers of all the Saints
          throughout the world should be to that effect; for they wage war
          against the kingdom of God, and have fallen upon that stone with
          an army; and let them be broken, even according to the words of
          "If the army now invading Utah should be overthrown," says an
          unbeliever, "are you not fearful that a much larger one will be
          sent to chastise you?" No sir; I am not. If we honour our God by
          keeping his law, no army of this world can ever prevail against
          us; and the greater its numbers, the greater and more complete
          its overthrow. If the Red Sea be not the trap in which the enemy
          will be caught, there will be a snow or hailstorm, a whirlwind,
          an earthquake, fire from above or from beneath, or the sword of
          the Lord and of Brigham. I only fear that we may not live so that
          God will hear and answer our prayers. If we get any important
          petition granted by any legislative body, we must have some
          influence enlisted in its favour; and if we expect God to grant
          our petitions, we must so live before him as to have influence
          with him. To have influence with the king is next to being king
          We do not desire to shed the blood of our enemies. We have never
          desired it. But our prayers should be, that the power and
          strength arrayed against us may be broken by the providence of
          God, or by the arm of his power; that they may be smitten with
          confusion and darkness; that the means they may adopt for their
          success may be providentially overruled for their overthrow; that
          they may be wasted away like the early frosts, and be scattered
          about like chaff before the wind, until, as the martyred Joseph
          said, just before he was murdered by Governor Ford's mob, there
          shall not be a potsherd of them left. This prayer should not be
          confined to our enemies on our immediate borders; for they are
          only the blind tools of a power that has decreed our overthrow;
          but should extend, with increased faith and zeal, to that very
          power that handles these tools.
          Brethren, the army sent to operate against us has been stopped in
          the vicinity of the ruins of Forts Bridger and Supply. By what
          power or agency were they stopped? Col. Alexander assured
          Governor Young that he had abundant means or power at his command
          to come into Salt Lake Valley. Add to this the fact that one
          Mormon was taken prisoner by the Colonel's order, and it is said
          that orders were found on his person to annoy the enemy in every
          way he could, but not to kill any or fire a gun. I know nothing
          of any such orders. Still the enemy claim that they found such
          orders upon the person of their "Mormon" prisoner. Now, if
          Colonel Alexander really believed his own statement to Governor
          Young, that he had abundant means at his command to force his way
          into the city, and if he believed the pretended orders said to be
          found with his "Mormon" prisoner to be genuine--that nobody was
          to be killed nor a gun fired, why did he not march in with his
          army? He had plenty of force to do it, and the assurance,
          according to his showing, that the "Mormons" were not to kill any
          nor fire a gun? What kind of reason or apology can he make to the
          Department for not marching directly into the city. That is his
          business, however, not ours. 
          It was not "Mormon" numbers, according to his views, neither
          "Mormon" bullets that arrested the progress of the army; but it
          really was the united faith and prayers of the Saints of God that
          set bounds to their progress. Having, therefore, this evidence
          that God Hears and answers our prayers, it should inspire us with
          redoubled zeal, union, faith, and energy to continue to call upon
          the Lord until every power that lifts an arm against his kingdom
          crumbles and falls like the mighty image that the Babylonish
          monarch beheld in the visions of the night. 
          Our enemies have eyes, but they cannot see. They may say that the
          tardy movements of the forces in concentrating, together with an
          unexpected snowstorm, in which many of their animals perished,
          were the causes of their hindrance on Ham's Fork; but who caused
          the tardy movements of the collecting forces? and who sent the
          snowstorm? The same invisible hand that forced off the wheels
          from Pharaoh's chariots that caused them to drag heavily. The
          prayers of the Saints by day and by night are more potent that
          the multitude of soldiers, armed with Sharp's and the Minie
          rifle. Yet the Saints should be liberally endowed with both. 
          If we continue in all humility before the Lord, full of faith and
          diligent in prayer, with hearts full of integrity, and honour the
          words of our Prophets and leaders, and the United States continue
          their hostile movements against the Saints, it shall be with them
          as it was with the man upon the scaffold lifting at the granite
          rock, when the scaffolding gave way and fell, and with it the
          man; and the stone, falling on the top of him, ground him to
          The United States' army is sent by the President. He is the
          highest power which they know or recognize. Did they know any
          higher, they would never have come here. Has that army a chaplain
          Prophet that can obtain the word of the Lord for them, or one
          whose prayers the Lord hears? We say no, and they cannot say yes;
          neither dare they. The policy of the Government will not allow of
          a chaplin Prophet to lead its armies; and a man inspired of the
          Lord--one who can say, "Thus said the Lord"--would not lead them
          under their present policy.
          The whole army and nation are blind enough to be led by mere men
          who lay no claim to the inspiration of the Almighty, and not one
          among them that can receive the word of the Lord. The man whose
          prayers the hears can obtain his word touching the duties of the
          sphere in which he is legitimately called to act. Yet the nation
          despise the "Mormons" because they are led by a man who can
          receive the word of the Lord for them, and whose prayers the Lord
          hears and answers. The evidence of this is before us, day by day,
          and year by year. A fashionable chaplin, who is master of much
          flowery language, may formally tell the Almighty how great and
          glorious he is--how high is his throne, and how vast are his
          dominions; and yet the God of Israel will never thank him for the
          information, neither praise him for his sweet rhetorical
          sentences. But the man that is chosen of God, and armed with the
          power of revelation and the visions of heaven, is the man to lead
          the Latter-day Saints. No less will satisfy them. To the rule of
          no other will they willingly submit. Govern Utah who will,
          Brigham Young or his duly chosen successor can alone govern the
          "Mormons." Freemen have the right to choose their own rulers. The
          world often will the men whom God appoints, but the Saints choose
          them. Here is the difference. The Saints may be killed--that is,
          their bodies; but their spirits can never yield to the powers of
          this world. And our God says that, if we will be valiant, pure,
          and faithful, we never shall, worlds without end. 
          What is the real design of the Government in sending troops to
          Utah? This winter, or during this session of Congress, special
          legislation is contemplated; a stringent law against polygamy to
          be enacted; and the troops are sent here in advance to the
          passage of such an act to make themselves comfortable and
          strongly establish themselves in these valleys and hold
          themselves in readiness to enforce that law when enacted. Then
          they would say, "Now, Mr. Mormon, we have got you!" Anything for
          a lawful pretence to raise a fuss with the "Mormons," to destroy
          them from the earth! But everlasting thanks to Zion's God! He has
          said, "Sanctify yourselves before me, assert your rights, and I
          will back you up and fight your battles. You have long pleaded
          with the Government and people of this nation, and they would not
          hear you; and now, verily, said the Lord, I will plead with the
          nation for you."
          According to our faith in God is our boldness to meet whatever
          may come. Brethren, let us be valiant. A mighty host may gather
          against us; but if God be with us, we may have a seven months'
          job in burying their dead; and their weapons of war may furnish
          us fuel for years, so that we shall not have to go to the kanyons
          for this indispensable auxiliary to our domestic comfort and
          happiness. A mighty slaughter is to occur in the armies of the
          Saints' enemies in some country where firewood is scarce, and a
          high value placed upon their weapons of war for that purpose. 
          It is said that a new Governor has been appointed for Utah,
          judges, secretary, &c. I do not pretend to know much about
          governmental usages or etiquette; but, to my coarse
          understanding, it would seem no more than proper for some
          department at Washington to have notified Governor Young of such
          appointments direct, and also of the object in sending an armed
          force with them, if, indeed, such force be really sent by the
          order of Government. The fact of our mail being unanimously taken
          away from us, in connection with the silence on the matters
          before spoken of, left us to conclude that death and destruction
          were determined on as the let and portion of the "Mormons" in
          Utah. The public papers that happened to reach us seemed also to
          breathe this kind of spirit, which were our main index to the
          real intentions of the Government. If, therefore, persecution and
          death must come, we concluded that we might better make the job
          cost our enemies all in our power, by selling our lives and
          liberties as dearly as possible. These were and are the feelings
          of the masses. Our leaders speak for themselves. In this position
          we have been greatly encouraged from a source that we deem
          infallible, provided we live in obedience to the commands of Him
          who holds all power both on earth and in heaven. I deem it
          unnecessary, however, to argue the merits of the case, but
          patiently await its issue,--at the same time to be active in the
          vigorous discharge of every known duty to God and man. 
          Our Elders and missionaries have laboured throughout the nations
          of the earth incessantly for the last twenty-seven years. We have
          endured and suffered shame. The great ones of the earth have
          generally spurned us from their presence. The holy and sanctified
          clergy have been most bitter against us. We have been very often
          like our Master, without a place to lay our head. We have slept
          by the wayside, under the trees of the forest, in sheds, and in
          barns, without money, and often without food; yet we have been
          cheerful, and in reality have lacked nothing. Our feet have bled
          with walking, and our hearts with sorrow over the blindness of
          the people; yet we have been joyful in our God. The four quarters
          of the globe and the islands of the sea have heard our voice and
          testimony. We have laboured and have not fainted. Though weak,
          combatting the world, the flesh, and the Devil, and though our
          enemies have reproached us with being a set of ignoramuses,
          dupes, villains, impostors, and fools, we have cried aloud and
          spared not. 
          In the midst of all this, our Prophets have been murdered, our
          brethren and sisters, friends, and families mobbed and driven
          from place to place, and from time to time living in tents,
          waggons, and in the open air. They have been maimed, crippled,
          and slain without mercy; and none have laid it to heart. "Your
          cause is just, but we can do nothing for you," is the heartless
          sentiment of an unbelieving and persecuting world. These are some
          of the circumstances under which the "Mormons" and "Mormon"
          missionaries have carried the Gospel to the nations of the earth.
          But those few that have ministered to the wants and necessities
          of these labourers and of these persecuted people shall in nowise
          lose their reward.
          These missionaries and labourers are now called home. The Lord
          says, "It is enough." "Come out of her, my people," is now the
          voice of God to his servants in every land and nation. The vials
          of his wrath cannot be poured out until you, like Lot, flee from
          the countries doomed to feel the vengeance of God. To you, my
          faithful brethren abroad, the Spirit of Christ has often
          whispered, during the last six months, "Go home--go home." Your
          guardian angels have said it to you in dreams and in visions, and
          we expect to see you come. Scores have already arrived. God bless
          them and you too, if you listen to the whisperings of that voice
          that speaks truth to the heart. 
          What now remains to be done? Your testimony is borne--your words
          have bone into all the earth. Read in the Book of Covenants, page
          102, and you will find the answer in part--"After your testimony
          cometh wrath and indignation upon the people; for after your
          testimony cometh the testimony of earthquakes, that shall cause
          groanings in the midst of her; and men shall fall upon the ground
          and shall not be able to stand. And also cometh the testimony of
          the voice of thunderings, and the voice of lightnings, and the
          voice of tempests, and the voice of the waves of the sea heaving
          themselves beyond their bounds; and all things shall be in
          commotion; and surely men's hearts shall fail them, for fear
          shall some upon all people," &c.
          Again, the sign given in the Book of Mormon, showing when the
          times of the Gentiles shall be fulfilled and they abandoned to
          the judgments and wrath of Almighty God, and showing also when
          the covenants of the Father with the house of Israel shall be
          fulfilled, is this important declaration--"I will take the
          fulness of my Gospel from among the Gentiles," &c. It might be
          considered treason to quote further. With our Elders and
          missionaries comes the fulness of the Gospel from among the
          Gentiles, who, like the leaky ship, are abandoned to the mercy of
          the winds and the waves. 
          I, for one, care but little about the stoppage of the mails; yet
          it would afford me some satisfaction to have the current news of
          the day. There is, however, an upper telegraph which the powers
          of this world cannot cut, neither suspend in any way. By that we
          can know all the news that are really essential to us as a
          people, if we strive to be in communication with it. This upper
          telegraph is the revelation of God. All things that are really
          essential for us to know will be made manifest unto us by the
          Lord; "for he doeth nothing, but he revealeth his secrets to his
          servants and Prophets." This is the sort of mail that we should
          patronize. It is conveyed with despatch and with safety. It goes
          at all times of day and of night, and is sure to bring an answer
          to our communications. The Government would think it strange to
          read from our records, made and penned more than twenty years
          ago, the very things which it is now doing in relation to us. But
          to read the issue, it would think stranger still. I read both
          more than twenty years since; and when I see things fulfilling
          every day and every year, it inspires me with assurance and joy.
          Have light in yourselves, says Jesus; and if our eye be single,
          our whole bodies will be full of light. God knows all things that
          are going on in the universe; and if we possess his mind, his
          Spirit, and his will, we may know at least some things that are
          going on in the world, even without a mail. 
          Brethren, the Lord is hearing and answering our prayers. The time
          to favour Zion is come. And now, I beseech you, let there be no
          contentions or disputations in your midst; for Jesus says,
          "Blessed are ye, if there be no disputations among you.:
          Dishonesty, covetousness, nonsense, and folly should all be
          purged from our hearts and purged from our wards; and if the
          guilty will not cast away such principles, let him go to the
          army, to the States or wherever he likes, so that he does not
          abide in our midst. "He shall gather out of his kingdom all
          things that offend and that do iniquity." Cleanse the inside of
          the platter or territory, so that God and angels may dwell with
          us for our defence. Bishops, High Priests, and Seventies, arise
          in the majesty Jehovah's strength, and cause the moral atmosphere
          that surrounds you to be pure and healthful, if you have to raise
          a storm of thunder and lightning to effect it. Fear not! only
          hurt not the oil or the wine. Be wise, and yet be strong.
          Remember that a good man does not steal, neither lie. He is not
          an idler, suffering his family to want. He does not take the
          advantage of his neighbour. He does not absent himself from your
          ward meetings, neither decline bearing his part of the burdens
          that are laid upon you. You will generally find a good man right
          where you want him, in person, in spirit, and in the means that
          he controls. He never has many excuses to make, but is on hand.
          He is always ready. A good man pays his Tithing, pays his
          devotions to God in all sincerity and faith, pays his just debts
          so far as he is able, is careful about contracting debts, lives
          well, yet prudently, and generally has something to bestow for
          charitable purposes. He never has much difficulty with his
          neighbours, readily yields to the counsel of his Bishop or other
          superior officer, worships no horse, ox, mule, ass, farm, or
          house, but worships the true God of heaven. Remember that all
          victory and glory that God is well pleased with are obtained by
          our diligence and prayers of faith. 
          Remember your fasts, your solemn assemblies, sacraments, and
          charities. Mark those in your wards that do not attend your
          meetings. Thieves and iniquitous persons do not, as a general
          thing, like to attend the house of worship. Slothful, prayerless,
          and worldly-minded persons often calculate to go to or return
          from the kanyons on the Sabbath, or go visiting on that day, or
          manage to hunt cattle on the range, or transact some business by
          which they can have a plausible excuse for not attending the
          house of worship. The flaming truths which they would be
          compelled to hear--the rebukes and chastisements there dealt out
          to such characters are not agreeable to their ears. 
          The persons that cannot profit by merited rebukes and
          chastisements cannot profit by blessings and communion with the
          Saints. Priests, Teachers, and Deacons, be active in the
          discharge of your duties. You are watchmen in your wards, and
          stand in a similar relation to your Bishops that the Apostles do
          to the Presidency. Great responsibility rests upon you. Every
          person in your wards should be known to you, and his business or
          occupation also. You should not only know the man or the woman
          and his business, but should likewise know his spirit and be able
          to weigh it in the balance of truth. 
          Shepherds of Israel, watch well your flocks. Keep them healthy
          and vigorous. Encourage good with kind and generous words, and
          fear not to deal with offenders or rebuke sin in a manner that
          corresponds with the nature thereof and also with the dignity of
          your high and holy calling. The great object is to be alive and
          awake to every duty, and to be "armed with righteousness and the
          power of God in great glory." 
          Our enemies are trying to come here to teach this people
          civilization and pure Christianity by killing our men and
          sleeping with our women. It seems that we have been prejudged and
          condemned to death. The halters are prepared by the waggon-load,
          and knots already tied (so says report). If they had the chance,
          they would probably go through the forms of law trials with us,
          with great kindness and moderation affectedly; but death is in
          the pot, and we must eat it. As we have been foreordained in
          Washington to be hung or shot, we must suffer it, built or not
          built. If we repent, we must be damned; and if we do not repent,
          we must be damned. The ropes are all prepared! But if we do our
          duty, that proud Haman will yet see the despised Jew in a
          position which he will have cause to envy. Though the course of
          our enemies stands in their power and not in their justice, yet
          they shall come to an inglorious end, and none shall help them;
          and let all Israel say, Amen. 
          May the blessings of the Highest be and abide with the upright in
          heart, now and for ever! Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / John
          Taylor, November 1, 1857
                            John Taylor, November 1, 1857
                          "THE KINGDOM OF GOD OR NOTHING."
             A Sermon by Elder John Taylor, delivered in the Tabernacle,
                       Great Salt Lake City, November 1, 1857.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt
          I shall take the liberty, this afternoon, of selecting a text. In
          the Second Epistle and last verse of the Gospel according to St.
          Brigham to Colonel Alexander, will be found the following
          We revere the testimony of ancient men of God, as recorded in
          what are often termed "the Scriptures of divine truth;" and it is
          quite common for men to refer to what the Prophets have said and
          to reason from their words. Now, I have been of the impression,
          for some length of time, that the sayings of modern men of God
          are of as great importance as the sayings of ancient men of God,
          and a great deal more applicable to our condition. 
          In looking at the Epistle to Colonel Alexander, and considering
          the important things said in it, I was particularly struck with
          the last words, which compose my text--"The kingdom of God or
          In other days, men have had their theories and their ideas about
          Christianity, Paganism, &c., which were referred to this morning.
          But we believe in living Priesthood--in present revelation--in
          the Church and kingdom of God as it now exists on the earth, as
          well as in things that were spoken of by ancient Prophets:
          consequently we believe in adapting our lives and actions to the
          position that we now occupy as servants of the true and living
          God--as God's representatives on the earth--as those who are
          destined to lay the foundation of that kingdom which shall stand
          for ever.
          What is the kingdom of God? This is a question that is in almost
          everybody's mouth. Every Saint is interested in this question. We
          need not go into the nonsense of sectarianism: we will let it go
          entirely, hook and line; for we know enough about it to care
          nothing about it, nor about the absurd ideas entertained by
          sectarians of the Kingdom of God. 
          The question is, What is the kingdom of God? How do we stand
          related to it? What is our position and what are the duties
          devolving upon us to-day, tomorrow, and every day of our lives,
          as servants of the living God?
          In the Epistle I have referred to, there is something said about
          the struggles we have endured, the privations we have suffered,
          the difficulties we have passed through, the wrongs and
          indignities that have been heaped upon us continually, and the
          persecutions that have been multiplied upon us as a people, even
          from the day of the organization of this Church to the present.
          There was in it a strong, marked, and determined expression. It
          gave Colonel Alexander and whomsoever it concerned to understand
          that it was time that these things should cease--that this people
          as well as every other people should have their rights, and these
          rights they were bent upon having at all events, not fearing the
          result,--that we, as a people, are determined to be free; for
          with us it is--"The kingdom of God or nothing."
          When we talk about kingdoms, we talk about governments, rule,
          authority, power; for wherever there is a kingdom, these
          principles exist to a greater or less extent. The kingdoms of
          this world have their powers, authorities, rule, regulations,
          law-givers, &c., according to the kind of government they adopt.
          Hitherto we, as a people, have been amalgamated to a great extent
          with other nations. It is true we have had a Church government,
          Church laws, Church discipline, and by the holy Priesthood
          associated with this Church we have governed the people. Still we
          have been subject to another government, power, and authority, to
          Gentile rule, Gentile dominion, Gentile laws, to Gentile usages
          and customs, to which we have been willingly subject, so far as
          they were righteous; and it was told us by the Lord, that if we
          observed the laws of God, we need not break the laws of the land. 
          The laws of man we have kept faithfully, adhering tenaciously to
          the principles of the Constitution of the Government, under which
          we have lived. We have not transgressed them in one iota, but
          have maintained our relationship honourably with the nation we
          have been associated with. 
          The first thing we did when we came to this land was to organize
          a government for our protection, which was according to the
          pattern set us by our neighbours--Oregon, for instance; then
          represented our case to the United States. 
          We came out here because we were disfranchised, exiled, robbed of
          our rights as American citizens, and forced to wander in the
          wilderness to seek among the savages of the forest that freedom
          denied us by Christianity. Did we in this transgress any laws of
          the United States, depart from any usage, or act contrary to any
          established custom or law of the Government? We did not. We
          applied for the sanction of Congress to our doings, and it was a
          matter of astonishment and surprise that we should take such
          steps, after the usage we had received. Our course was applauded
          by statesmen, senators, members of Congress, and the authorities
          of the United States generally; and all our transactions,
          constitution, and laws were approved gladly, considered right,
          and according to the usages and laws of the United States. 
          By-and-by we petitioned for a Territorial Government and obtained
          it. Our enemies have all the time been complaining of us that we
          have infringed upon the Constitution and laws of the United
          States. But I ask, Wherein have we done it? Who appointed our
          Governor? The President of the United States, by and with the
          advice and consent of the Senate, according to the usage which
          exists, but indeed contrary to any right they possessed; still he
          did it. Who appointed our Judges, United States Marshal,
          Secretary of State, and Indian Agency? The President of the
          United States. 
          Has there been another Governor appointed? I suppose there has;
          but he has not yet been qualified. No man has authority to act in
          the gubernatorial capacity in this Territory at the present time,
          according to the laws of the United States, but Governor Young.
          No Governor has a right to act here, although he may have been
          appointed by the President of the United States, until he comes
          here and is qualified. No man has ever come yet to be qualified,
          and consequently Governor Young stands legitimately in that
          What law have we transgressed? I have tried to find out. We have
          examined the Constitution of the United States and the laws
          pertaining to these matters; and if anybody here or elsewhere can
          point out any law that we have transgressed as American citizens,
          they know more about it than I have been able to learn; and I
          should like such a person to put me in possession of that
          What next? Why, on the back of this, after lying about us,
          slandering, abusing, and imposing upon us, trampling upon our
          rights, and sending the meanest curses among us that ever
          disgraced the footstool of God--men they are ashamed of
          themselves, they have now sent an armed force contrary to law and
          right and to the principles that ought to prevail in the United
          States. They have no more right to do this than I have to cut any
          of your throats. 
          There is no authority guaranteed to the President of the United
          States to perpetrate so diabolical an act as the one he has
          engaged in. Why is it that this is done? Is it because we are
          worse than other people? No. After raking up everything they
          could, before I left the States, the only thing they could find
          against us as a people was that we had burned some books
          belonging to the United States' Court; and since that I have seen
          published affidavits, totally denying any such thing, by the
          Clerk of that Court. 
          The President of the United States has now taken upon himself the
          responsibility of sending into this Territory an armed force to
          trample upon the rights of 100,000 American freemen, on purpose
          to subserve a political interest, for the benefit of his own
          party. It becomes a serious question with us what to do under
          these circumstances. 
          Shall we lie down and let those scoundrels cut our throats? is
          the first question. Shall we untie our neckcloths and tell them
          to come on and cut and carve away as they please, and knock down,
          drag out, and introduce their abominations among us--their cursed
          Christian institutions--to prostitute our women and lay low our
          best men? Shall we suffer it, I say?
          There are certain things that are sacred to us and to every man
          and woman. If we submit to a thing of that sort, we submit to see
          the very institutions of our own nation trampled under foot--the
          Constitution of our country desecrated and rent in pieces. We
          submit to see the bonds severed that have bound this nation
          together, and blood, anarchy, and confusion prevail. 
          If they have a mind to cut each other's throats, we have no
          objections. We say, Success to both parties. But when they come
          to cut ours, without ceremony, we say, Hands off, gentlemen. We
          are not so religious as to sit down meekly and tamely submit to
          these things. We understand something of the difference between
          what some call treason, or treasonable acts, and base submission
          to the will of a tyrant, who would seek to bring us into servile
          chains--into perfect submission to his sway. 
          We are engaged here in protecting ourselves, our wives, and
          families,--in guarding everything that is sacred and honourable
          among men from invasion and oppression of some of the most
          corrupt wretches that ever disgraced the footstool of God.
          "This is pretty plain talk," say you. I meant to talk plain: I do
          not wish to be misunderstood. I have lately been conversant with
          some of their proceedings, having been in their neighbourhood for
          some time recently. Some of our brethren, who went among them
          with messages, have said that such was the filth and obscenity of
          their language--cursing, swearing, and every meanness, that,
          rather than stay all night with them, they chose to go off some
          distance and lie on the ground. If these are the feelings of our
          brethren, some of whom are rough and uncouth in their manners, we
          know not how our sisters would feel in such delectable society. 
          We will not submit to such a state of things for ever. If you,
          our enemies, are determined to invade our rights, trample upon
          our liberties, snatch from us the rich boon we have inherited
          from our fathers, to make us bow in vile subservience to your
          will, we will resist you: we will not submit to it. We will say,
          Stand back and give us our rights. We will act the part of
          freemen, and we say it shall be "The kingdom of God or nothing."
          Why is it that we are persecuted? It is because we believe in the
          establishment of the kingdom of God upon the earth--because we
          say and know that God has established his kingdom--because the
          principles of righteousness are introduced among the children of
          men, and they expose the evils, corruption, priestcraft,
          political craft, and the abominations that everywhere exist. They
          lay naked before all men the abominable acts of the human family.
          It is not because there is evil among us, but because there is
          goodness, truth, holiness. It is because God has spoken, and his
          word has had effect on our hearts, to govern and influence our
          It is because of these things that the present crusade has been
          set on foot against us, and no doubt it began to rage at the very
          time that you were humbling yourselves before God, when you
          commenced the reformation and were repenting of your sins and
          making restoration. At the time the Spirit of God began to be
          manifested among you, the spirit of the Devil began to rage among
          them against you, stirring them up to pluck you down, root you
          up, and destroy you from the face of the earth. 
          Why was it that you had the reformation among you, that you were
          stirred up to repent of your sins and make restitution? It was
          because you had the holy Priesthood in your midst--the spirit of
          prophecy and revelation,--because you had men among you who could
          commune with the Most High and contemplate his purposes and
          designs towards the human family. It was because they saw evils
          existing among you and dare tell of it, and the Spirit of God
          pointed the word at your hearts, which brought you to repentance. 
          If we had corruption, grog-holes, rowdyism, and every kind of
          pollution among us, and were this place permitted to be a perfect
          sink of iniquity, where the gambler, horse-racer, black-leg, and
          every evil character would be tolerated, then we should be hail
          fellows, well met, with our enemies. The wicked would bow and
          scrape to us all over the earth: they would call us gentlemen
          everywhere, and we should be respected. It would be as it was
          with a few of our brethren who had to play a ruse upon some of
          the Missourians. The "Mormon" boys were flying from a mob and had
          to pass a meeting-house when the people were coming out from
          their prayers. These pious souls suspected that the brethren were
          "You are 'Mormons,' damn you," said they.
          "We are not, damn you. Let go of my horse, or I will knock your
          damned head off."
          "Oh, we discover you are not 'Mormons,' gentlemen: we are under a
          mistake;" and they let them go. 
          Who is it that is acquainted with this people and does not know
          that they are better, more pure, more virtuous and true to their
          God and his laws, and more faithful to the laws and Constitution
          of their country than any other people? I know the difference,
          for I have been among others and seen their actions.
          What is the cause, then, of the evil planned against us? IT is
          because we are the Church and kingdom of God. Have we ever left
          our houses to interfere with other people anywhere? Did you ever
          hear of a crusade by a set of "Mormons" upon any other people?
          Did the "Mormons," when in Nauvoo, go to Carthage, La Harpe,
          Warsaw, or to any place, and interfere with the rights of
          anybody? Have we done it here? Have we gone to Mexico,
          California, Kansas, Nebraska, Oregon, Minnesota, or to any of the
          surrounding districts, to interfere with their business or
          If there has been such a crusade, I have remained altogether
          ignorant of it, as to when it took place, who were engaged in it,
          and how many. 
          If we do not interfere with anybody else, what right has anybody
          else to interfere with us? I speak now as an American citizen. I
          speak, if you please, as a politician. On this ground I ask what
          right any people or number of people have to come and interfere
          with us? There is o such right in the catalogue, gentlemen. 
          They, however, do interfere with us; and what is the cause of it?
          It is because of the kingdom of God--because of the truth of
          God--because of the Spirit of God and certain principles that
          exist among this people. And what are they? It is polygamy that
          they are so incensed against. They need not draw down such a long
          face about that, for they themselves do a thousand times worse
          than that, were it even as heinous a crime as they say it is. 
          It is not polygamy that they are so horrified at. I know their
          meanness and abominations, and have told them of them scores of
          times. There have been from the foundation of the world two
          principles and powers--the principles of darkness and the
          principles of light, the principles of truth and the principles
          of error, the Spirit of God and the spirit of the Devil;--and
          there has been a mighty struggle between these two principles and
          Hitherto the good, the virtuous, the pure and upright, the men of
          God, the Saints of the Most High have been trampled under foot
          and cast out--have wandered about in sheep-skins and goat-skins,
          dwelt in deserts, dens, holes, and caves of the earth, of whom
          the world was not worthy; and the spirit and power of darkness
          have prevailed over the powers of light, error over truth, and
          the spirit of the Wicked One over the Spirit of God, to a certain
          extent; so much so, that truth, equity, and righteousness have
          always been at a discount, and men of God have been deprived of
          their rights and robbed of their inheritances. 
          God has had a certain design to accomplish, associated with the
          human family; and I suppose that everything which has taken place
          has been just. I am not going to find fault with God or the
          Devil. I suppose the Devil is as necessary as any other being, or
          he would not have been.
          The righteous have been trampled under foot, but it is well with
          them. It was not their day. The time for them to reign and have
          dominion was not come. While wrapt in prophetic vision, they
          could view the events that were to transpire in the last days,
          and prophesied of a kingdom that should be set up and stand for
          ever. They looked with joyful anticipation to this day. They
          expected a time when a certain power would exist on the earth,
          that would be more powerful than the powers of darkness, when the
          righteous should no more be trodden under foot, cast out, and
          oppressed,--when the kingdoms of this world should become the
          kingdoms of our God and his Christ, over which he should rule for
          Men in our day have got hold of many odd ideas. The Millerites,
          for instance, have talked about Christ's coming to reign on the
          earth at a certain time; and they were all going to be
          transfigured, changed, caught up, &c. In France and elsewhere,
          they had their social systems; but they knew no more about God,
          Christ, or anything of this kind than the Devil, I was going to
          say; but they did not begin to know as much as the Devil about
          God and his ways. These Socialists talked about a great
          millennium, and people went to them, expecting them to be a very
          righteous, praying people. They were something like the man whom
          the Indian thought was a "Mormon;" but when the Indian found out
          that he did not pray, that convinced him to the contrary. They
          did not regard God or his laws, but took up a little twig of
          Christianity and planted it on to their infidelity. They were
          going to ameliorate the condition of the human family and bring
          about the millennium.
          In relation to the kingdom of God, what is it? Is it a spiritual
          kingdom? Yes. Is it a temporal kingdom? Yes. Does it relate to
          the spiritual affairs of men? Yes. Does it relate to the temporal
          of men? Yes. And when it is fully established upon the earth, the
          will of God will be done upon the earth precisely as it is done
          in heaven. 
          It is the will of God we are trying to do at the present time, in
          trying to fulfil his law, submit to his ordinances, and obey his
          commandments--not in one little item, but in every action of our
          lives, seeking to be perfectly submissive to the admonitions of
          the Almighty.
               Was the kingdom that the Prophets talked about, that should
          be set up in the latter times, going to be a Church? Yes. And a
          State? Yes, it was going to be both Church and State, to rule
          both temporarily and spiritually. It may be asked, How can we
          live under the dominion and laws of the United States and be
          subjects of another kingdom? Because the kingdom of God is
          higher, and its laws are so much more exalted than those of any
          other nation, that it is the easiest thing in life for a servant
          of God to keep any of their laws; and, as I have said before,
          this we have uniformly done. 
          Who made this earth? The Lord. 
          Who sustains it? The Lord. 
          Who feeds and clothes the millions of the human family that exist
          upon it, both Saint and sinner? The Lord. 
          Who upholds everything in the universe? The Lord. 
          Who provides for the myriads of cattle, fish, and fowl that
          inhabit the sea, earth, and air? The Lord. 
          Who has implanted in them that instinct which causes them to take
          care of their young, and that power by which to propagate their
          species? The Lord. 
          Who has given to man understanding? The Lord. 
          Who has given to the Gentile philosopher, machinist, &c., every
          particle of intelligence they have with regard to the electric
          telegraph, the power and application of steam to the wants of the
          human family, and every kind of invention that has been brought
          to light during the last century? The Lord. 
          Who sets up the kings, emperors, and potentates that rule and
          govern the universe? The Lord. 
          And who is there that acknowledges his hand? Where is the nation,
          the people, the church even, or other power that does it? You may
          wander east, west, north, and south, and you cannot find it in
          any church or government on the earth, except the Church of Jesus
          Christ of Latter-day Saints.
          What is the cause of all the darkness, confusion, and misery that
          abound, the imprisonment and chains, and the thousand evils that
          afflict mankind, embracing all the wars, bloodshed, and distress
          of nations? It is because they do not acknowledge the hand of the
          Lord in all things nor understand his will. They pursue their own
          course, and do not seek the wisdom and intelligence of God. 
          Why is it that thrones will be cast down, empires dissolved,
          nations destroyed, and confusion and distress cover all people,
          as the Prophets have spoken? Because the Spirit of the Lord will
          be withdrawn from the nations in consequence of their
          wickededness, and they will be left to their own folly. 
          Who has a right to rule the nations, to control kingdoms, and
          govern all the people of the earth? Are you a father? Have you
          wives and children? Do you feed, clothe, and provide for them?
          Yes. Have they a right to rebel against you? If they did, what
          would you think of such children?
          Such is the position of the whole human family; such is the
          position of the whole world--of every society, religious,
          political, social, or otherwise; and none of them acknowledge God
          or are obedient to his laws. 
          Now, then, suppose you had a farm, and you put people on it to
          work--you fed and clothed them, and expected them to be obedient
          to you; but instead of that, while you were feeding, clothing,
          and taking care of them, they were abusing you, departing from
          your laws, transgressing your precepts, and listening to somebody
          else who was your enemy, instead of listening to you;--would you
          let them remain for ever on your farm, or would you by-and-by put
          somebody else in their place that would be more faithful to you?
          The transactions of men are even more outrageous against the
          Lord, and the only excuse for them is their ignorance. What! are
          Christians ignorant? Yes, as ignorant of the things of God as the
          brute beast.
          Let us look at it a little further. If you wished the welfare of
          your family, would you not chastise them? You would, if they did
          wrong. Would you not try to make them submit to your law? You
          certainly would; and if they would not, after you had pleaded
          with them and chastised them, you would disinherit them. The Lord
          said of Abraham, "I know he will fear me and command his children
          after him to do it.? It was this principle that recommended him
          to the favour of God. 
          What would you think of the conduct of a God who would let the
          human family continue for ever to transgress his law without
          interfering? You would think he was getting foolish and in his
          dotage--that he did not understand himself nor correct principles
          in allowing a lot of bad boys to rise up and increase around him,
          letting evil principles exist instead of righteous ones, and the
          wicked afflict and persecute the good with impunity. 
          The time was to come, and is now, that God has set up his kingdom
          upon the earth, and he is determined that men shall be in
          subjection to his laws. Can the Lord go to any other people but
          this and declare his will? He cannot. There is not a nation,
          kingdom, power, or people,--there is not a political, moral,
          social, philosophical, or religious society in the world that
          would receive the word of God, except this people. 
          If there cannot be a people anywhere found that will listen to
          the word of God and receive instructions from him, how can his
          kingdom ever be established? It is impossible? What is the first
          thing necessary to the establishment of his kingdom? It is to
          raise up a Prophet and have him declare the will of God; the next
          is to have people yield obedience to the word of the Lord through
          that Prophet. If you cannot have these, you never can establish
          the kingdom of God upon the earth. 
          What is the kingdom of God? It is God's government upon the earth
          and in heaven. 
          What is his Priesthood? It is the rule, authority,
          administration, if you please, of the government of God on the
          earth or in the heavens; for the same Priesthood that exists upon
          the earth exists in the heavens, and that Priesthood holds the
          keys of the mysteries of the revelations of God; and the
          legitimate head of that Priesthood, who has communion with God,
          is the Prophet, Seer, and Revelator to his Church and people on
          the earth.
          When the will of God is done on earth as it is in heaven, that
          Priesthood will be the only legitimate ruling power under the
          whole heavens; for every other power and influence will be
          subject to it. When the millennium which we have been speaking of
          is introduced, all potentates, powers, and authorities--every
          man, woman, and child will be in subjection to the kingdom of
          God; they will be under the power and dominion of the Priesthood
          of God: then the will of God will be done on the earth as it is
          done in heaven. 
          This places man in his true relationship to the Most High; and
          while others are boasting of their own intelligence, powers,
          authority, rule, greatness, and might, our boast, glory, might,
          strength, and power are in the Lord. Do we have any temporal
          blessings? We acknowledge the hand of God in it. Do we have
          spiritual blessings? We acknowledge the hand of God in it. Do we
          do wrong and receive chastisement? We acknowledge his hand in it,
          and consider it a blessing. Are we in difficulties? We
          acknowledge the hand of God therein, and consider that it is
          necessary we should be tried and proved in all things, that we
          may be counted worthy to associate with the intelligences that
          surround the throne of God. Do we have prosperity? We acknowledge
          the hand of God in it, and pray him for wisdom to use properly
          what he has put in our hands. Do we possess scientific
          knowledge--knowledge on agriculture or any other kind of
          knowledge? We acknowledge his hand in it. Are we here in these
          mountains, surrounded, as a people, by the barriers of the
          everlasting hills, brought out from our enemies to inherit these
          valleys? We acknowledge the hand of God in it. Does an army come
          to make war on us? We acknowledge the hand of God in it. We feel
          that we are in his hands, and say "It is the Lord; let him do
          what seemeth good unto him, and we will seek to do what is right
          on our part. Have we to go to war? We will acknowledge the hand
          of God in it. If we are told not to kill our enemies, we will not
          kill them, but cultivate a spirit of meekness and humility, doing
          what the Priesthood of God dictates--what the servants of the
          living God tell us. In peace and prosperity, war and adversity,
          we will lean on the hand of God, and acknowledge it, and say,
          "Hallelujah! the Lord God Omnipotent reigneth."
          What is it we are seeking to do? Is it to get a farm, a house, or
          a possession of any kind? Who is anxious about such things, which
          are here to-day and gone to-morrow? They are well enough in their
          Some of you are tried because you do not have many things you
          would like to have. If you had those things, you would not be
          tied in that point, and it is therefore necessary you should be
          placed in that position. It may be necessary, after awhile, that
          you should be tried with more of the things of this life than you
          know what to do with. 
          With none is the Lord God angry except those who do not
          acknowledge his hand in all things. What does it matter whether
          we are farming, building, planting, fighting, or anything else,
          if we are doing as we are told? Who cares? I do not. Let matters
          come in whatever way they have a mind to, it is all right, if we
          do right.
          As eternal beings, associated with eternity that was and with
          eternity that is to come--beings that dwelt in eternal light
          before we came here, we are now seeking for salvation, preparing
          for celestial inheritances in the eternal worlds. This is what we
          are after: we are trying to lay a foundation for ourselves, for
          our progenitors, and for our posterity, that will endure and
          extend while countless ages roll; and we are taught the
          principles by which we may obtain this salvation by the holy
          Priesthood--by the revelations of God communicated to us through
          that Priesthood. 
          And now, having been forced from the United States, after having
          been driven time and time again from our homes by our murderous
          enemies--having fulfilled all the requirements that God or man
          could require of us, and kept every law necessary for us to
          observe,--after all this, and more, I say, shall we suffer those
          poor, miserable, damned, infernal scoundrels to come here and
          infringe upon our sacred rights?
          ["NO!" resounded throughout the Tabernacle, making the walls of
          the building tremble.]
          NO! It shall be "The Kingdom of God or nothing" with us. That is
          my text, I believe; and we will stick to it--we will maintain it;
          and, in the name of Israel's God, the kingdom of God shall roll
          on, and all the powers of earth and hell cannot stop its
          progress. It is onward, onward, ONWARD, from this time
          henceforth, to all eternity.
          [Voices of "Amen."]
          "Are you not afraid of being killed?" you may ask me. No. Great
          conscience! who cares about being killed? They cannot kill you.
          They may shoot a ball into you, and your body may fall; but you
          will live. Who cares about dying? We are associated with eternal
          principles: they are within us as a well springing up to eternal
          life. We have begun to live for ever.
          Who would be afraid of a poor, miserable soldier--a man that gets
          eight dollars a month for killing people, and a miserable butcher
          at that--one of the poorest curses in creation? Mean as the
          Americans are, they will not, many of them, hire for soldiers.
          But the Government must hire foreigners for eight dollars a month
          to come out here to kill us! Who is afraid of them? Let them come
          on or stay and wiggle, it is all right.
          We are the Saints of God; we have the kingdom of God, and the
          devils in hell and all the wicked men on the earth cannot take it
          from us. We shall rule and have dominion in the earth, and they
          cannot help themselves. They can take their own course. They may
          fight against us, if they like, or they can back out and leave
          us; but the kingdom will go on. They may take what course they
          please: the kingdom is ours, and we are Christ's, and Christ is
          It is for us to live our religion, keep God's commandments, and
          we shall be saved: we shall thus have the honour of doing
          something for the kingdom of God, in rolling back the flood of
          darkness that is enveloping the universe, and preparing ourselves
          for dominion on the earth and eternal exaltation in the kingdom
          of God for ever.
          God bless you and preserve you in purity and holiness before him,
          that you may inherit all you anticipate, I pray in the name of
          Jesus Christ! Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Heber
          C. Kimball, November 8, 1857
                         Heber C. Kimball, November 8, 1857
           Remarks by President Heber C. Kimball, made in the Tabernacle,
               Great Salt Lake City, Sunday Morning, November 8, 1857.
                              Reported by Leo Hawkins.
          I have almost a good mind to talk a little,--that is, if you want
          I should; but I certainly do not want to, without you want I
          should. And then again, if I felt really like it, I should talk,
          whether you wanted I should, or not. The reason I make that
          expression is because I am called to a holy calling, with our
          President, or brother Brigham. He is my leader, and I am his
          brother and servant. I am his fellow-servant,--that is, I am one
          with him; and my calling actually required me to talk, and to
          teach, and to instruct, and to exhort, and to invite all men to
          embrace the Gospel and plan of life and salvation. 
          Jesus, in the 1st chap. of John, 4th verse, says, "In him was
          life, and the life was the light of men."
          Also, in the 8th chap. and 12th verse, "Then spake Jesus again
          unto them, saying, I am the light of the world. He that followeth
          me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life."
          And in the 14th chap. and 6th verse, "Jesus said unto him, I am
          the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father
          but by me.:
          Well, you have heard me express, several times, that truth if
          life, and life is light. Well, it is true, because Jesus says, "I
          am the life and the light of the world; and no man that is born
          upon the face of this earth can obtain eternal life except they
          go by me. They must come by me or through me to obtain eternal
          Brethren, I want you to understand, if you will treasure up
          principles of truth as you would treasure up gold and silver and
          precious stones--if you will treasure up truth, every truth that
          you treasure up, that truth is life, and that life is light. Do
          you not see that if you treasure up the principles of truth in
          you, and you have your treasury full of them, then, of course,
          your treasure is saviour of all? Why? Because life is light, and
          light is life. Do you not see, if you have got the true
          principles dwelling in you, if you treasure up truth, you are
          bound to have life; and then, if you have life, you are bound to
          have light; and if those true principles dwell in you, and they
          abound, do you not see you cannot be unfruitful? You are bound to
          be fruitful in the knowledge of God and in the accomplishment of
          his purposes. 
          If you do not take a course to treasure up truth, you never will
          be prophets and prophetesses; for it is in treasuring up truth,
          and life, and light. If these principles be in you, and they
          abound, you will be like a well of water springing up into
          everlasting life. It will be everlasting, do you not see, if it
          springs up; and that will bring us back to the fountain of life,
          from whence springs life and light. Do you not see it spring from
          God. It emanates from him; and if it is in us and abounds, it
          will be in us as a well of water springing up into everlasting
          life, from whence it sprang.
          Well, here are a few ideas before you,--something I had not
          thought of before I got up. Well, I am called and ordained to be
          a teacher and to instruct; but if you do not receive my
          instructions and the principles of truth that emanate from me,
          then you are not profited; for the Lord says, "If a man offers
          you a gift, and you do not receive that gift with gladness and
          joy, then, of course, the man that offers the gift is not
          blessed; but if the receiver receives it with joy, then the man
          that gives the gift has joy in giving it. Do you not see it?
          Well, upon the same principle, if God confers gifts, and
          blessings, and promises, and glories, and immortality, and
          eternal lives, and you receive them and treasure them up, then
          our Father and our God has joy in that man. Do you understand me?
          I do not know whether you get my idea or not; but, to save my
          head, I cannot talk any plainer. You know I am called simple.
          Well, I wish I was simpler and could convey things with greater
          simplicity that I do. Why? Because I have not a spirit within me
          to wish to talk one word to you except good sense, and light, and
          information, and instruction to the child that sits before me
          to-day. Do you not see God is not pleased with any man except
          those that receive the gifts, and treasure them up, and practise
          upon those gifts? And he gives those gifts, and confers them upon
          you, and will have us to practise upon them. Now, these
          principles to me are plain and simple.
          Do you suppose that God in person called upon Joseph Smith, our
          Prophet? God called upon him; but God did not come himself and
          call, but he sent Peter to do it. Do you not see? He sent Peter
          and sent Moroni to Joseph, and told him that he had got the
          plates. Did God come himself? No: he sent Moroni and told him
          there was a record, and says he, "That record is matter that
          pertains to the Lamanites, and it tells when their fathers came
          out of Jerusalem, and how they came, and all about it; and, says
          he, "If you will do as I tell you, I will confer a gift upon
          you." Well, he conferred it upon him, because Joseph said he
          would do as he told him. "I want you to go to work and take the
          Urim and Thummim, and translate this book, and have it published,
          that this nation may read it." Do you not see, by Joseph
          receiving the gift that was conferred upon him, you and I have
          that record?
          Well, when this took place, Peter came along to him and gave
          power and authority, and, says he, "You go and baptise Oliver
          Cowdery, and then ordain him a Priest." He did it, and do you not
          see his works were in exercise? Then Oliver, having authority,
          baptised Joseph and ordained him a Priest. Do you not see the
          works, how they manifest themselves?
          Well, then Peter comes along. Why did not God come? He sent
          Peter, do you not see? Why did he not come along? Because he has
          agents to attend to his business, and he sits upon his throne and
          is established at head-quarters, and tells this man, "Go and do
          this;" and it is behind the vail just as it is here. You have got
          to learn that.
          Peter comes along with James and John and ordains Joseph to be an
          Apostle, and then Joseph ordains Oliver, and David Whitmer, and
          Martin Harris; and then they were ordered to select twelve more
          and ordain them. It was done. Do you not see works were manifest?
          They received the truth, and thus you and I are here today; and
          if it had not been for the practice, you and I would not have
          been here, would we?
          Well, practice makes perfect: it makes perfect men and perfect
          Apostles, and Prophets, and Elders, and Teachers, and Deacons;
          and how can you be perfect without it? It is by our practice and
          living up to our profession that we increase and grow in grace
          and in the knowledge of the truth.
          There are a great many things, probably, that are taught you from
          this stand--that is, from individuals. They are taught to you;
          and you, probably, have not got faith and confidence in them.
          Well, now, I do not care whether you have or not: if you will go
          and do as you are told, you shall have a knowledge, although you
          had not a particle of faith when you began. That is curious
          religion; but there is no knowledge on any other principle, only
          by obedience. 
          Some time ago I brought up a figure. Say I, John, Timothy, Jack,
          Peter--I do not care who they are--you go up above the arsenal
          and dig a well, and dig ten or twelve feet, and you shall find a
          good spring of water. "Well," says brother John, I have no
          confidence in that, that there can be water got there, neither
          have I any confidence in you as an Apostle." Say I, I do not care
          whether you have or not: go and do as I tell you, and you shall
          be paid for it. You go and dig a well, and dig twelve feet, and
          find a good spring of water. Now, do you not get the knowledge of
          that water without a particle of faith or confidence? It is in
          the works.
          Some say, "What is the use of my doing this, or that, or the
          other thing? I have no faith in it." I do not care a dime for
          your faith. They produce the knowledge; and then, do you not see,
          knowledge swallows up faith before you ever had it?
          Did you ever know anything to swallow a thing when it was not?
          Yes, the Methodists' God has neither body, parts, nor passions;
          and yet they have swallowed him. 
          Well, now, this is a kind of curious doctrine, but it is true
          doctrine; for I never knew much faith in exercise in a man,
          except that man had good works, by going and doing as the
          servants of Gad say, to produce faith and knowledge. 
          Now, I will ask you a question--a scriptural question. I do not
          know where it is. It is in the Bible. I cannot refer to chapter
          and verse. I want to refer you to the case of Naaman, the
          Assyrian, who was smitten with leprosy. How much faith had he? He
          had not a particle; but his servant, who had faith, prevailed
          upon him to go down to Jordan. When the Prophet spoke to him and
          told him to go and dip himself seven times, and he should become
          whole, he had not a particle of confidence in it. He went down
          with his riches to buy health, but he could not buy it: he had to
          do as the Prophet told him. He went down and dipped himself seven
          times and was healed. Do you not believe, then, he knew things?
          Said he, "I know now they are the men of God. I know now that God
          lives, and their words are true; for I did as they told me, but I
          had not any confidence in them, and I was healed."
          Does not that agree with me? I merely bring that up that you may
          not find fault with my doctrine. Do you not see that is the
          principle that we must be actuated by? I care not whether you
          have any faith or not: you go and do as you are told to do, and
          that produces knowledge; and how long will it be before we shall
          be presented into the presence of Jesus Christ, the Son of God?
          It will not be but a little while. Now, there are a great many
          people, even to this day, with all the reformation that has been
          in our midst, who make a practice of telling lies. It is
          impossible for them to tell a story, except they put into the
          interstices of that story lies of their own manufacturing. Do you
          not see that destroys? They make a practice of it. They cannot
          transact business except they must lie a little. How long, do you
          suppose, it will take that man to get to heaven and to enter into
          celestial glory, where lies or anything that is impure cannot
          exist? It will take him as many millions of years as there will
          be millions of years to come. 
          Perhaps some people may think that if we do lie and are
          dishonest, and so forth and so on, when we die, the death that
          comes upon us and the change that comes upon us will change and
          take away those lies, and we shall find ourselves basking in
          truth. So such thing. I may tell a lie to you--I may be dishonest
          to my neighbours and ungodly, then I may get up and go out of
          doors; and I want to know what better am I when I go through that
          door than I was this side of it? Has it changed my nature?
          No--not one particle.
          I will refer to brother Morley's words. He says, "The mind makes
          the man." That is true. What is the mind? It is that character
          that was made and fashioned after the image of God before these
          bodies were made,--that is, our spirits. What is the mind? It is
          the spirit that was made before this body. Do you know it? Well,
          now let me tell you, it is that spirit that makes the man. I care
          not how humble he is--if his nose is three feet long and all his
          body was disfigured--I will tell you, if there is a good spirit
          in that man, and that spirit cultivates wholesome doctrine and
          lives to God, you love him. It is the spirit that is in the man
          that makes the man, which is the mind that you were speaking of,
          father Morley. You meant so, did you not, father Morley? ["Yes."]
          Well, you did. 
          Well, our change from this state of existence does not change our
          character. The character must be made and formed before it goes
          through the vail, if he is going to continue with the servants of
          God, the Prophets. 
          Now, brethren, you have got a spirit in you, and that spirit was
          created and organized--was born and begotten by our Father and
          our God before we ever took these bodies; and these bodies were
          formed by him, and through him, and of him, just as much as the
          spirit was; for I will tell you, he commenced and brought forth
          spirits; and then, when he completed that work, he commenced and
          brought forth tabernacles for those spirits to dwell in. I came
          through him, both spirit and body. God made the elements that
          they are made of, just as much as he made anything. Tell me the
          first thing that is made on earth that God did not organize and
          place here in this world. Not a thing.
          Well, it is the mind or spirit that is in the man that makes the
          man. Was that spirit a wicked spirit when it was organized and
          brought into existence? No--no more than our little children are
          sinners. But we have been led--that is perverted, or rather led
          away from these true principles--led into evil principles by
          others. Well, then, of course, we are not exactly as we were when
          we were organized. No; we have taken other men's books and
          reasonings, and fell into other principles--led away from
          nature,--some say, "nature's darkness." I do not know anything
          about such a thing as nature's darkness. If we were as we were in
          our first creation, we should be as innocent as little children,
          every one of us. Perhaps you do not see these things as I do; but
          I have not any notion of my own to communicate unto you. 
          You see I am the simplest fellow there is. I wish to God I was
          more simple than I am: I should be nearer to what I was in
          nature. I do not know how to use what they call big words. I
          never studies them. I have no taste particularly for them; and if
          I had, I should not know where to put them, and should be very
          apt to stick the head to the feet, and the feet to the head. I do
          not know where to apply them. Well, what are they? You may ask
          brother Taylor, and he will tell you they are conflabberation of
          all languages. Conflabberation! Well, that's a good word, is it
          not? That is, they are French, English, Irish, Dutch, Hebrew, and
          Latin, and they are all kinds of words; and there are not many of
          them that have good sense. Well, they are a mixture; every
          language is a mixture. I have not studied them. 
          Do you want to blame me? Cannot you understand me in my simple
          way of communicating to you? After all my simplicity and simple
          words, and trying to simplify my words to the capacity of the
          people, there are lots of you who do not understand the words I
          use--the words I was taught from my youth in my simplicity.
          Well now, brethren, I tell you I have said what I have said; and
          my God grant that it may inspire your hearts--that it may exalt
          your minds--that you may treasure up these truths, as far as they
          are truths; and I know nothing to the contrary but what they are
          truths; and if you do, or anybody else, I would be pleased to be
          corrected,--that is \, to have the real thing presented instead
          of them. Is it to my injury, because I did not happen to get it,
          and somebody steps forward and puts it there? Does it injure me?
          No: it communicates to me that I had not got,--that is, a truth;
          and truth is life, and life is light. Do you not see what I get
          by it?
          In regard to our situation and circumstances in these valleys,
          and non else; and learn to do as you are told, both old and
          young: learn to do as you are told for the future. And when you
          are taking a position, if you do not know that you are right, do
          not take it--I mean independently. But if you are told by your
          leader to do a thing, do it. None of your business whether it is
          right or wrong. You will get water, if you dig away. That is
          rather presumptuous doctrine with some people; but with me it is
          I have heard men teach in this stand that I was under no
          obligation to do anything, except I had a revelation. I do not
          believe the doctrine at all. I don't care who preached it. I am
          not the leader--I am not the Prophet, nor the chief Apostle. I do
          not hold the keys independently. I have no keys, only what I hold
          in brother Brigham; and then brother Brigham has the word of God:
          he must do thus and so. He comes to me and says, "Brother Heber,
          I want you to do thus and so." Wait till I go home, get into my
          private room, and ask God that I may get a revelation! Ain't that
          pretty, brother Taylor? Well, I will not talk just as I think. If
          I did, I would knock this pulpit head over heels, when I think of
          such folly. Go and get a revelation, when God has spoken through
          my head!--and then the tail goes off, and gets down on his knees
          to get a revelation, when the head has got one!
          Now, I have heard that doctrine preached here, that they must
          have a revelation before they are bound to receive that word and
          go and practise it, just as it would have been with those men I
          employed to go and dig that well by the arsenal. "Wait, sir." I
          will not wait a minute. Go along, or I will employ men that will
          do it. "I am going to get a revelation to know if there is water
          there." They do not know that by believing on any man's testimony
          they increase in knowledge, wisdom, and the power of God. They
          forget that. Do you not see that I can learn more to be led than
          I can to lead, if I have the right man to lead me? Brother
          Brigham is my leader: he is my Prophet, my Seer, and my
          Revelator; and whatever he says, that is for me to do; and it is
          not for me to question his one word, nor to question God a
          minute. Do you not see?
          I will tell you what it is right for me to do. If there is time,
          (and if there is not, it is not necessary,) go along and bow down
          before the Lord God. Say I, "Father, help me to be faithful and
          do the words of Brother Brigham, my leader, that I may see glory
          in it, and that I may see immortality and eternal lives in it."
          I am teaching you, Elders. Now, if I am not right, I am wrong. I
          leave it to you to judge whether I am right or wrong. It is
          curious for me to talk, but it is not for me to question his
          words any more that it was Naaman, the Assyrian. Said he, "What
          better are the waters of Jordan? Why are not the rivers of
          Damascus and the water round Jerusalem just as good? Why is there
          not as much virtue in them as there is in Jordan? Why, there is;
          but the virtue is in the man of God telling him what to do. There
          was virtue in doing what the servant of God told him to do. If he
          had told him to have gone and got into a mud hole, it would have
          had the same effect as that water. It is in the words of the man
          of God, and God lets his angels go along wherever he goes, and
          the angel of God goes along and touches the man with the touch of
          his finger, and says, "Be thou made whole!" Why? "Because the
          servant of God says so, and I have come here to help to fulfil
          it." Either side of the vail they are active to see that your
          words are fulfilled. If they are not, they are not with us, nor
          we with them.
          What difference does the vail make? None at all. To us there is a
          vail, but to them there is no vail. They can see through the side
          of a house as well as through the air. I know that by experience.
          "Well, now," some one says, "What good does it do for two or
          three thousand men to be in the mountains? Why, I don't know that
          it is any of our business. It says, "Uncle Sam cannot come. We
          are ready; we are on the spot." Well, what else? It gives those
          men an experience that they cannot have on any other principle.
          They are getting an experience--of what? To cultivate them for
          something greater, which will come next year; and if it does not
          come then, it will come some time. I do not say it will come next
          year. You never heard me say it would; but you and I want to live
          our religion and do as we are told, not questioning a word for a
          moment. You have got to stop that. It is enough for others to do
          that, without our meddling with those things. I am speaking to
          the Elders of Israel.
          Well, these things are all right. You learn to do as you are
          told; and those that have not been baptised into the Church, I
          say, Go and be baptised, and put on Christ by baptism, that you
          may receive the Holy Ghost and be one with us: that is all I have
          got to say to you. 
          Bless your souls, I pray my Father to bless brother Brigham, with
          his Counsellors, that they may be one; to bless the twelve, that
          they may be one with us; to bless the Seventies, that they may be
          one with the Twelve, and the High Priests one with the Seventies,
          and the Elders one with the High Priests, and the Priests one
          with the Elders, &c.; that we may all be one and partake of the
          same Spirit, and same power, and same Holy Ghost, and same
          religion. That is my exhortation to you: I cannot preach any
          If that takes place, I want to know what any power has to do with
          us? As we relax our power and live our religion--do you not see,
          as we relax, that the Devil will gain power upon us? Suppose,
          now, I was to take a rough-and-tumble with a man and wrestle with
          him: I wrestle a spell pretty valiantly, and almost gain power
          over my antagonist; I have almost gained power over him, and I
          begin to slack up to get a little breath: do you not see that
          that antagonist is bound to put me down if I slack up? Well, if
          you slack up your religion, living faithfully, praying,
          exhorting, and living to God, do you not see our antagonist is
          gaining power over us? But let me tell you, gentlemen, we will
          take it just as God dictates; and if he says rough-and-tumble,
          let us take it rough-and-tumble, and pitch them headlong where
          they belong. 
          Well, now if you will do just as you are gold, you will increase
          in knowledge ten thousand times faster than you will be pray six
          hours; and if you follow that course, you will not advance in
          your religion one-hundredth part so much as that man that will do
          just as he is told, no matter what.
          If you are told to watch, watch. Can you pray when you are
          watching? I do: I pray all the time. Well, live your
          religion--that is not your religion, but the religion of Jesus
          Christ, and serve your God. Cease all your contentions. Are there
          not contentions enough in the world? Are there not contentions
          enough with that army and with the devils in hell, without there
          being any with us? These things should subside: they should take
          an avalanche, like the snow. You know the snow will take a slide
          down the sides of the mountains. They call that an avalanche. I
          should call it a hell of a full of a fuss,--that is, it is a
          convulsion. Well, excuse me for that language. 
          Well, there are those troops over yonder. They are not here, are
          they? Well, some of you thought they were coming here, and
          several ray away, supposing they were coming. Well, I am glad of
          that, and I wish every other one that feels so would put off. We
          will help them. Brother Brigham has fulfilled his word: he said
          if he could find any man or woman that wanted to go, he would
          send them to that happy place. Well, he has sent Mrs. Mogo. No
          doubt she will die a happy death.
          This great Mr. Johnson, the Commander of those troops has come, I
          suppose. Brother Groesbeck has come in with his company from the
          States. God gave him wisdom, and he is here, and he escaped those
          troops. Mr. Johnson says he is going to obey the President's
          orders, and says he will come in; but by the time he goes up and
          down Ham's Fork a few times, it will take away his strength. If
          you do not believe it, try some other Ham's Fork. I had as lieve
          sit on a bayonet as a fork. He has had a fever all the way, and
          will have a chill when he has lost his strength. He will have an
          all-killing chill. He will not come here. We have told you all
          the time they will not come. But he may attempt to come, and then
          he may not. That is just as God has a mind to.
          I feel the Lord designs the thing should move along and no blood
          be shed, because I do not consider God is so anxious that we
          should be blood-thirsty men as some may be. God designs we should
          be pure men, holding the oracles of God in holy and pure vessels;
          but when it is necessary that blood should be shed, we should be
          as ready to do that as to eat an apple. That is my religion, and
          I feel that our platter is pretty near clean of some things, and
          we calculate to keep it clean from this time henceforth and for
          ever, and, as the Scripture reads, "Lay judgment to the line and
          righteousness to the plummet." We shall do that thing, and we
          shall commence in the mountains. We shall clean the platter of
          all such scoundrels; and if men and women will not live their
          religion, but take a course to pervert the hearts of the
          righteous, we will "lay judgment to the line and righteousness to
          the plummet," and we will let you know that the earth can swallow
          you up, as it did Korah with his host; and as brother Taylor
          says, you may dig your graves, and we will slay you, and you may
          crawl into them. 
          I do not mean you, if you are not here. I mean those corrupt
          scoundrels. Well, this is just as brother Brigham has said here
          hundreds of times. 
          If those troops could have come in here, let me tell you, all the
          finest and smartest devils would have entered into the smartest
          bodies and come here to overturn us. You will not catch a mean,
          low, inferior, stupid devil in a smart man. I will tell you the
          Devil has his smart men. Says he, "You get into a smart body."
          Smart spirits do not get into inferior bodies. Would you? No.
          Well, then, do you suppose they would do what we could not do
          under the same circumstances? 
          Was not Lucifer a pretty smart lad? Just look at it--son of the
          morning--when all heaven wept when he fell. He was a smart man.
          It takes a smart men--that is, one who thinks he is, to act the
          devil. Well, I merely speak of these things. 
          Well, they would come from Dan to Beersheba, and from California
          to France,--that is, wicked and abominable spirits would have
          come into this valley when those troops came, do you not see? The
          blacklegs, and highway robbers, and whoremongers, and whores
          would have gathered into this place, if those troops could have
          come into this place to have slain our leaders. Let me die an
          honourable man living my religion rather than to bow down to
          their cursed yoke again, as the Lord God liveth. They have made
          us stiffen our upper lip, and now we have got to keep it stiff--I
          mean the upper lip; and if you grow as you ought, five years will
          not pass away before your lips will be five times as thick as
          they are now. Joseph had a high lip, and he was a beautiful
          men--one of the most lovely men I ever saw, especially when the
          Spirit of God was in him; and his countenance was as white as the
          whitest thing you ever saw. 
          Let all these domestic broils and family difficulties cease, ye
          Elders of Israel; and if you have got things that will not sleep
          and will not rest, live your religion, and I would take my
          johnny-cake and go into the mountains and spend my days defending
          the house of Israel, before I would stay at home and quarrel one
          moment. Is it not better for you? Well, now stop these little
          broils at home in your families: that is the end of all trouble
          with us; and God will bless us and will bless the earth, and the
          air, and the elements, and we shall be blessed with fruits and
          grain, and with every other thing that our hearts can desire. 
          Is there anything that we ever saw of thought of but what is in
          the elements, the air we breathe, and the earth we walk on?--and
          blessing be to God that I live on an earth that lives. Well, that
          is a curious idea. I heard a Methodist preacher preach that once
          at Miller's Corners, in Bloomfield, Ontario County, New York, and
          thought it was a curious idea. Well, it is truth.
          Now, I will prove this to you, if any of you doubt it, by true
          philosophy--by natural philosophy. Do you believe that a dead
          woman can conceive from a live man and bring forth a live child?
          Do you believe it, any of you mothers? Do you believe it, any of
          you fathers? No, you know better. Well, if a woman will not
          produce when she is dead, then the earth cannot produce living
          things if it was dead. 
          Does the earth conceive? It does, and it brings forth. If it did
          not, why do you go and put your wheat into the ground? Does it
          not conceive it? But it does not conceive except you put it
          there. It conceives and brings forth, and you and I live, both
          for food and for clothing, silks and satins. What! satin grow!?
          Yes. What produces it? The silkworm produces it. Does the
          silkworm produce except it conceives? No, it eats of the mulberry
          tree. Where does the mulberry tree come from? It comes from the
          earth. Where did the earth come from? From its parent earths. 
          Well, some of you may call that foolish philosophy. But if it is,
          I will throw out foolish things, that you may gather up wise
          things. The earth is alive. If it was not, it could not produce.
          If you find a piece of earth that is dead, you cannot produce
          anything from it, except you resurrect it and restore it to life.
          If that is not true philosophy, it is nothing that I have
          produced. It is what every man knows, if he can only reflect. But
          I thought it was curious doctrine when that Methodist spoke of
          How could my head produce hair, if it was dead? Neither can the
          earth produce grain, if it is dead. Now, brethren, do you not see
          the propriety of our blessing the earth--the earth that we
          inhabit and cultivate? If you do not see the propriety of it, for
          heaven's sake do not bless the sacrament again. Do not take a
          bottle of oil to the prayer-circle to be blessed, when you do not
          believe the earth can be blessed. 
          If you have got half-an-acre, you can bless it, and dedicate it,
          and consecrate it to God, and ask him to fill it with life. Well,
          then, if you can bless half-an-acre, why can you not bless a
          whole acre? And if you can bless an acre, why can you not bless
          all this Territory? Just reflect for a moment. If you can bless a
          gill of oil, then you can bless a pint. When you bless a pint,
          you can bless a quart, and so on until you can bless a bottle of
          oil as big as this valley.
          Bless God! Yes, I bless my Father and my God pertaining to this
          earth; I bless his Son; I bless everything in heaven and on
          earth. Now, you may call that improper, when you do it, all of
          you, indirectly. Bless my Father! Suppose I had an earthly father
          here, and he had received the Gospel and was a Patriarch, I would
          bless him and put all the blessings of him that I had power and
          strength; that is, I would put all I had on to him; then I could
          get it back; then I could bless his father, and his father his
          father, and the blessings I would put on my father would go clear
          back until it came to the Father and God from whence it came, and
          then it comes down to us again, just as the sap and nourishment
          in the three: if it does not go into the root, it never would go
          into the top; and every limb and branch pertaining to that tree
          has to give up a portion of the nourishment they receive, and
          then we are all impregnated with the roots. 
          Well, I am talking these things as plain as I can. Perhaps some
          of you do treasure them up. Be we live on an earth that lives: if
          we do not, we cannot produce nor get produced from it. You never
          will get peaches if you do not plant and let the earth conceive;
          but if the earth conceives, and you nourish it, you are bound to
          have peaches, and apples, and currants, and plums. If you
          cultivate and partake of the elements that God has made, you will
          have houses, and barns, and granaries, and everything else. God
          has made it. All we have to do is to take it from the earth. But
          you say it is all dead, do you? Oh folly! There is nothing that
          is dead that lives, nor shall we ever die temporally nor
          spiritually; for that tabernacle that I live in is life; and when
          it goes back to the earth, it goes back into a living creature.
          For what purpose? To become analyzed, and cleansed, and purified,
          that I may receive it again, more glorious than this body. How
          can I obtain it? On no other principle only to do just as I am
          told. You have got to learn that lesson. I have got to learn it;
          and if I have got to learn it, I can prove that you have got to
          do as I do.
          You are very exact in military tactics. Here is Squire Wells, and
          he is under the direction of our Governor; and then every other
          officer in his turn must be dictated and governed as he is
          dictated. Does Squire Wells run to every man? No: he gives his
          order to the officer next to him, and so on till it goes down to
          the fourth corporal. See how accurate you have to be in that
          discipline. Should not you be more so in the kingdom of your
          God?--and if you do not, you are not making progress. 
          Why are you not wide awake? Cultivate, make, take, and increase,
          and bring forth those things that you need. You do not believe
          the gate is going to be shut down, do you? Mr. Johnson says there
          shall not an article or a train come in, except the Governor lets
          him come in. The Governor will not, except he grounds arms; and
          if he will ground arms, he will ground arms; and if he no ground
          arms, then he no ground arms, and he cannot come here. Gentlemen,
          your leaders all say he cannot come here. Why, if he want to come
          here himself, with a few of his council,--if they really want to
          come to see the Governor, they have the privilege; but they would
          have to ground arms. I am not going to take that word back. They
          have got to ground arms from this time henceforth. But we have
          shouldered arms, and it is present arms; and do you not see that
          the next thing is to take aim?
          Joseph, when he was in Nauvoo, on the house top, drew his sword
          from the sheath and said it never should be sheathed again.
          Brother Brigham has said the same, and brother Heber will back
          him in it, and so will every officer in the kingdom of God. What
          say you, brethren, will we go it? If so, raise your right hands
          and say Aye.
          [One loud "AYE" rang through the congregation.]
          We are not going to bow down to the wicked any more. I had rather
          die as I am and fight my way than ever to go into their hands
          again. They probably, if they had had only sense enough, might
          have caused us to bow down our heads and got the bow on Old
          Bright's neck. They will not pay the debts contracted by their
          own officers. They send the most damnable and contemptible
          scoundrels that they could to rule over us, and they abused us
          all the time, and God wanted they should. If they had not,
          perhaps we should have bowed down and got the yoke on our neck.
          Now, perhaps, they will try to draw back and say, "Let us give
          them a State Government and a few hundred thousand dollars, and
          see if we cannot pet them." When you see a thing of that sort,
          look out for the Devil: he will be behind that curtain. When I
          see anything of that kind, I am suspicious. 
          We shall prescribe a course for the United States to take after
          this. Well, you do not believe that, do you? Do as you are told,
          and see if it does not come to pass. You cannot tell whether I am
          a true man, unless you listen to me. 
          Well, these are my feelings. God bless you, brethren; God bless
          you, sisters; God bless this earth, and these valleys, and every
          honest person that comes into these valleys! If their soldiers
          desert and come in here, may the Lord God bless them, that they
          may have the Spirit of God on them while they stay here! We live
          to let live, and we will treat them with kindness and gentility,
          if they stay here and behave themselves. But they cannot whore it
          here; for gentlemen, if there is anything of that kind, we will
          slay both men and women. We will do it, as the Lord liveth--we
          will slay such characters. Now, which would be the most worthy to
          be slain--the women that had had her endowments and made certain
          covenants before God, or the man that knew nothing about it? The
          woman, of course. She must be guilty according to her knowledge.
          These little officers that were brought up as pets at West Point
          boasted all the way what they were going to do with our leaders:
          they were going to take our Governor and hang him, and take his
          wives and use them at their leisure; and they were going to serve
          Heber in the same way, and all others that lifted their tongues
          against our enemies. They have not yet done it, have they?
          Well, these are my feelings. They are out there: they have been
          sitting on Ham's Fork so long, it has begun to ulcerate, as that
          nasty fop, Douglas, uses the term,--that little nasty snot-nose:
          you cannot call him anything half so mean as he is--the nastiest
          of all nasties that God could suffer on the earth. We have been a
          friend to him and everybody else, and we have no done any harm.
          We mind our own business. We came to this land because we were
          just obliged to do so; and I have been broken up and driven five
          times; but, as the Lord God liveth, I do not go again, nor any
          other man or women that will live their religion. Let us do
          right, as a people, and we never will go from this place until we
          please and God pleases to have us. 
          We were brought here for a purpose to secure us, and for us to
          stand to our rights and privileges as citizens of the United
          States, and claim protection. What are they coming up here for?
          To kill your leaders; and when they kill us they will kill every
          man and woman that will sustain those men. Well, they are not
          here--God be praised! Hallelujah! Glory to God in the highest,
          peace on earth, and goodwill to all good men! My soul says
          Hallelujah! Praise the Lord, my soul, and give glory to him, and
          let all Israel say Amen!
          [The assembly responded, "Amen."]
          Am I not happy? These are the people of God. They shall live and
          they shall prosper, and everything that is attached to the
          righteous shall be righteous and grow righteous. Yea, I bless the
          earth and everything that is on this earth; but I feel, in the
          name and by the authority of Jesus Christ and my calling, to
          curse that man that lifts his heel against my God and his cause
          and kingdom; and the curse of God shall be upon him: the angels
          of God shall chase him, and he shall have no peace. The President
          of the United States and his coadjutors that have caused this
          thing shall never rest again, for they shall go to hell. 
          Brother Morley says he has no right to teach. I am blessing them
          with the power that is on your head. Why do you not do it? That
          is the blessing of a Patriarch, to bless the house of Israel. I
          bless you as a people--not only this people here today, but I
          bless all that are in the east, west, north, or south. God bless
          our head and every member that is attached to it! Bless the house
          of Israel, with the head of the vine, and with every wine and
          every branch that pertains to it, with every particle of fruit,
          that it may be choice in the house of God in these mountains!
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Brigham
          Young, November 15, 1857
                          Brigham Young, November 15, 1857
                       SOURCE OF TRUE HAPPINESS--PRAYER, ETC.
          A Sermon by President Brigham Young, delivered in the Tabernacle,
                      Great Salt Lake City, November 15, 1857.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt
          I am happy for the privilege of standing before the Saints. It is
          a great pleasure to me to associate with those whose feelings are
          concentrated in the establishment of peace and righteousness upon
          the earth.
          Before I heard the Gospel as again revealed in its purity through
          Joseph the Prophet, I was tolerably well acquainted with the
          spirit, disposition, tact, and talents possessed by the children
          of men; and though I was then but about thirty years of age, I
          had seen and heard enough to make me well acquainted with the
          people in their acts and dealings one towards another, the result
          of which was to make me sick, tired, and disgusted with the
          world; and had it been possible, I would have withdrawn from all
          people, except a few, who, like myself, would leave the vain,
          foolish, wicked, and unsatisfying customs and practices of the
          world. Sorrow, wretchedness, death, misery, disappointment,
          anguish, pain of heart, and crushed spirits prevail over the
          earth; and apparently, the whole of the intelligence of mankind
          is directed in a way to produce cruel and unnatural results. 
          Since I have been in this Church and kingdom, I have endeavoured
          to learn and treasure up wisdom and good understanding, and then
          not to forget them. I have endeavoured to gather to myself every
          principle that would promote righteousness in me and those who
          would hearken to my counsel. 
          Read the history of any kingdom or nation, and trace through all
          the channels from the history of nations and kingdoms to that of
          families and individuals who have not known God nor observed his
          commandments, and you will find that sorrow and disappointment
          have been intimately mingled in all the gaiety, luxuries, and
          pretended enjoyments of their mortal lives. They have found a
          bitter sting in their happiest moments and a deadly poison in
          their cups. There is no man or woman on the earth who can enjoy
          solid satisfaction--unalloyed peace and comfort, but in the holy
          spirit of our religion--in the Gospel of salvation: that is the
          only source of true happiness. Read the history of those who can
          command the wealth of the world to minister to their happiness,
          and they find it not in authority, station, nor wealth. From the
          monarch upon his throne to the most degraded beggar upon the
          streets, all who enjoy not the Gospel are destitute of the source
          of true happiness. It is not to be found among them. 
          When the portals of heaven are opened and the Priesthood of God
          is given, he so blesses the people that they can truly understand
          the principles that tend to peace, to glory, immortality, and
          eternal lives. That and that alone can give true satisfaction to
          our spirits, which are organized to receive and continue to
          increase in principles of light, intelligence, power, and
          glory,--organized to be preserved to eternally associate
          together--to have the privilege of beholding each other's
          faces--of enjoying each other's society and the society of holy
          beings who have been tried as we have and have to be, and to
          enjoy, love, converse with, and look upon the faces of those
          beings who have been glorified throughout all ages that are
          countless to us. Their identity has been preserved, and they
          enjoy the smiles of their friends and associate with their
          companions who have in a mortal state passed through the same
          ordeals they endured while in this existence. Fathers and mothers
          associate with their children, children with their parents,
          brothers with sisters, and sisters with their brothers--all in
          their family circles dwelling in the midst of the glorified. What
          else can satisfy a truly intelligent human being--the immortal
          spirit that is tabernacled in a mortal tenement? Nothing.
          What would induce an intelligent individual to suffer his eyes to
          be put out and to live without seeing objects around him--the
          faces of his family, friends, and connections? Would money? What
          would hire an intelligent person to be deprived of the sense of
          hearing? Could money buy his hearing? What would hire you to
          suffer the destruction of the organ of speech, or to be deprived
          of any of the more important members of your organization? The
          things of this world could not induce you to suffer the
          destruction of any of the vital powers of your organization; yet
          the world are seeking after the paltry, perishable things of time
          and sense. They are their glory--their pretended comfort--their
          god, and their daily study and pursuit. But the members which God
          has placed in our tabernacles are worth all the world to us. We
          have the power of seeing, hearing, tasting, smelling, and
          feeling, enabling us to converse and associate with each other;
          and money cannot buy these blessings from us. 
          Stop then, and consider what use you will make of these powers.
          Will you go wild after the things of this world, as do the
          majority of the inhabitants of the earth, with whose ways you are
          well acquainted? How long will they endure? Their breath is in
          their nostrils; to-day they are--to-morrow they are not. What
          prospects have they for futurity? Have they any promise? Yes.
          What is it? Death. Have they the promise of life eternal? They
          have, upon certain conditions; but they are no more about those
          conditions that did certain characters that Paul wrote about:
          they are even like the dumb beasts that are entirely ignorant of
          futurity. Fatten an ox and lead him to the slaughter, and he
          knows nothing of what awaits him. So it is with the great
          majority of the inhabitants of the earth: they have no knowledge
          of their future condition; they merely know that death will
          terminate their present career. We are blessed with the words of
          eternal life, with the everlasting Priesthood, and the keys
          thereof, with principles that, if rightly acted upon, will secure
          to us those blessings we now enjoy, and which you hear the
          brethren often speak about. 
          I am happy; I am fully of joy, comfort, and peace: all within me
          is light, for I desire nothing but to do the will of my Father in
          Heaven. I delight not in unrighteousness, but in righteousness
          and truth. I seek to promote the good and happiness of myself and
          those with whom I am associated. We have the privilege of
          securing to ourselves that eternal bliss that can never fade
          away, and of preserving our identity, that, when millions of ages
          have rolled away, we can then behold each other as we do today,
          and can converse together. One thousand years hence, probably
          many of this congregation will talk over difficulties we are now
          passing through.
          You hear some of the brethren surmise that we are going to have
          trouble. You need not expect any trouble, except you take a
          course to bring it upon you. You need never expect to see sorrow,
          unless your own conduct, conversation, and acts bring it to your
          hearts. Do you not know that sorrow to you can exist only in your
          own hearts? Though men or women were in the mountains
          perishing--though they be in overwhelming depths of snow,
          freezing to death, or be on a desolate island starving to death
          for want of food,--though they perish by the sword or in any
          other way, yet, if the heart is cheerful, all is light and glory
          within: there is no sorrow within them. You never saw a true
          Saint in the world that had sorrow, neither can you find one. If
          persons are destitute of the fountain of living water, or the
          principles of eternal life, then they are sorrowful. If the words
          of life dwell within us, and we have the hope of eternal life and
          glory, and let that spark within us kindle to a flame, to the
          consuming of the least and last remains of selfishness, we never
          can walk in darkness and are strangers to doubt and fear. Yet we
          see people among us who are still selfish, and that principle we
          must abandon: we must strip off selfishness, and put covetousness
          far from us. We must become of one heart and mind, in order to
          fully enjoy the blessings we anticipate. 
          Brother Phineas correctly observed, in his remarks, that if ten
          men are united in these mountains, they are not to be overcome by
          their enemies. Are this whole people perfectly united? I fear
          not. When I undertake to present before this people the true
          principles of the Priesthood, I almost shudder, because so many
          do not yet understand them and cannot receive them. I go into my
          room where we have our prayer-circle, and among twelve men there
          will perhaps be twelve different prayers offered up--one praying
          for one thing and another for another thing. You may reduce the
          number to three, and let them be clothed for secret prayer; and
          while one is praying aloud, each of the others will be praying
          for that which the one that is mouth is not praying for, unless
          they are better taught in regard to prayer than is the Christian
          world. Ask the people if they understand the principle of prayer,
          and many reply, "We do not know: we pray with all our might;" and
          at the same time it is a scene of confusion and distraction of
          We are in a land of liberty; and our fathers have taught
          us--especially those born in America, that every man and woman
          and every child old enough to speak, argue, read, reflect, &c.,
          must have minds of their own, and not listen to anybody else.
          They are taught to shape their own opinions, and not depend upon
          others to direct their thoughts, words, or actions. That system
          of teaching reminds me of the old saying, "Every man for himself,
          and the Devil for them all." Such views, though entertained by
          the human family at large, must be checked in this people. Yet
          when I undertake to strip off the garb of erroneous tradition,
          and to teach the people true principles of faith, prayer, and
          obedience, there are many who cannot receive those principles in
          their understanding and hearts. I have told you, and will now
          tell you again, that you have to bring your minds right to the
          authority of the Gospel--to the true Gospel line. Let an Elder
          pray here, and then ask a brother in the congregation what has
          been prayed for, and he cannot tell you. Ask a sister what has
          been prayed for and she cannot tell you. She may say, "I was so
          fervent in prayer myself that I did not hear what was prayed
          for." And so it is with hundreds of people who congregate here.
          And I think that I may venture to say that you will scarcely find
          an individual in the whole congregation that can tell what the
          person who prays has prayed for. Do you not know that to be a
          fact? I will appeal to your own minds.
          When a man opens or closes a meeting with prayer, every man,
          woman, and child in the congregation who professes to be a Saint
          should have no desire or words in their hearts and mouths but
          what are being offered by the man who is mouth for all the
          congregation. If all would follow out that principle, where would
          it lead the people? They would act with one heart and mind in all
          their acts through life, and promote the kingdom of God on the
          How many times I have attended prayer-meetings among the
          Methodists, in my youthful days, when perhaps one hundred men and
          women would all be praying aloud at once? I did not then know but
          that it was all right. I neither said nor cared anything about
          it. It often used to be father Joseph Smith's custom, when he
          took the lead of a fast-meeting, to request all present to pray
          aloud at the same time, and there would be as many different
          prayers as there were persons. Where was the concentration on a
          single and united thread of faith? It is like the cable that
          holds the ship. Unwind a cable, and you will find several hundred
          small cords; unwind the small cords, and you will find fourteen
          strands in each cord; unwind each strand, and there are thousands
          of fibres; and you have parted the cable of a ship fasted to a
          sure anchor, and the ship is free and wafting unmanageable before
          the furious tempest. So it is with prayer. You say you want to be
          united and want the blessings of heaven. 
          How many times have I said here, within the last three months, I
          pray that God would so lead us and our enemies that there will be
          no blood shed? And how many have come to meeting and prayed in
          their hearts that "our enemies would come on, for we want to slay
          them, for we have been mobbed and hunted enough;" and another
          would pray the same prayer, with a disposition to desire the
          spoil. One of the brethren prayed in camp that the snow might
          fall 40 feet deep on our enemies. I am satisfied if it falls only
          four or five feet deep. 
          I will tell you my faith in regard to the brethren now in the
          mountains. General Wells takes the charge; and when I write to
          him, I counsel him to do as the Holy Ghost shall dictate him, and
          inform him that whatever he may order and perform, he has my
          faith and influence to sustain him. 
          I pray God to turn away our enemies, to put hooks in their jaws
          and turn them wherever he will, with their gold, their horses,
          and all they possess. They do not know the "Mormons;" they are
          strangers to this people, and are full of wrath and malice
          towards us; but they know not why. They know not that they are
          stirred to anger against us by the enemy of all righteousness.
          Should those who instigated the sending of this army undertake to
          come here, there will be another scenery, for they are more or
          less acquainted with us and know that we are the most upright
          people on the earth; and they will not be able to shield
          themselves in the garb if ignorance. I will not talk about them,
          for you know their history, and you know and have seen much of
          the squalid wretchedness of the wicked inhabitants of the earth.
          Is there honour or virtue among them? Where is the man or woman
          among them that is to be trusted? If there is here and there any
          semblance of goodness or virtue, it is at once overcome by every
          fiendish art in their power. Women are overcome by sycophants, by
          those who rule the nation, and those who have power and influence
          in the various States, parties, and religious sects. Man is
          overcome by man; they cuddle, and wink, and gamble, and run
          to-and-fro in abominations of every grade, and lift their voices
          for and against each other, as did the Paddy in his petition to
          the king for an office, wherein he stated that he would vote for
          or against him, fight for him or fight him, just as he wished it.
          Colonel Alexander--probably one of the best men in the army now
          near Bridger ruins, told one of our messengers, when replying to
          a piece of advice I had given him to resign his commission rather
          than be found operating against an innocent people, that he was
          compelled to remain in the army; for, if he resigned, he knew not
          how to manage to sustain his family. He said, "I have no other
          means of support: I cannot throw up my commission, for then I
          should have no means to support my wife and children." As an
          American, shame and confusion would overwhelm me, were I to even
          think of trying to sustain my family by siding with tyranny and
          oppression. That is the only circumstance I wish to name. They
          are sent ostensibly to civilize this people. But I do not wish to
          talk much about such nonsense. The whole world are wrapt up in
          the garment of corruption, confusion, and destruction; and they
          are fast making their way down to hell, while we have the words
          of eternal life.
          How ought we to live? Look at yourselves and see whether your
          faith is concentrated with those who are appointed of the Lord to
          lead you and have rule over you. See whether all your desires are
          one with theirs. If not, it must come to that point. Let every
          Saint, when he prays, ask God for the things he needs to enable
          him to promote righteousness on the earth. If you do not know
          what to ask for, let me tell you how to pray. When you pray in
          secret or with your families, if you do not know anything to ask
          for, submit yourselves to your Father in heaven and beseech him
          to guide you by the inspiration of the Holy Ghost, and to guide
          this people, and dictate the affairs of his kingdom on the earth,
          and there leave it. Ask him to put you just where he wants you,
          and to tell you what he wants you to do, and feel that you are on
          hand to do it. These are a few of my reflections upon that point,
          and only a very few of them.
          Let this people be brought to the straightforward thread of the
          Gospel; and what more have we than what has been taught us from
          the beginning of this work? Nothing. And the only difficulty
          there has been is, that we were not prepared to receive it. Do
          you know how to direct your own minds? Where is there an honest
          man or woman on the face of this earth--one who has any knowledge
          of the Supreme Being, any feeling of the operation of an
          invisible agency, but what pleads with that God, whether they
          know him or not, to dictate their minds, affections, and conduct?
          Where is there and honest man or woman on the earth, but what
          that is their desire?
          Many do not know what to pray for. They need some one to dictate
          them. Will the Lord come and personally dictate them? You know
          that he will not. Will he send his holy angels to talk with you?
          You could not endure their presence: you are in a sinful world.
          What do you need? That invisible agency, called the spirit, to
          dictate your minds.
               The whole world are sadly in want of what they call a
          master-spirit. That is what the Government of the United States
          are deprived of. There is not one to be found among them, neither
          in the Cabinet of the President nor in the Senate of the United
          States. They are all gone, and there is no one in their midst
          competent to lead and dictate in the affairs of our General
          Government; but, as they say, it is with them a period of
          mediocrity. It has been acknowledged by Great Britain that the
          master-spirits are fled: there are none in the British
          Parliament, and they know not what to do. Let this people come to
          that condition, and say that they have no person capable of
          dictating and leading them, and you will be in the whirlpool of
          delusion. It will be every man for himself, and you would not
          know to do: you would not know how to dictate your own affairs.
          It is this which overwhelms the world in confusion and makes it
          Babylon, while the Priesthood elevates mankind and dictates the
          husband, the wife, and the children, and all they have.
          A feeling exists in the minds of many of this people that they
          would be glad to submit to their presiding Elder or Bishop, but
          they do no think that he has knowledge sufficient to lead them.
          Says a wife, "I would be glad to submit to my husband; but I wish
          I had a husband that I could look upon as my superior--that I
          could look up to and receive his words and counsel: that would be
          my highest delight. O that I had a husband capable of dictating
          me; but, alas! I have not." Go among some of the children, and
          they say, "I would be glad to mind my parents in all things, but
          I believe that I know more than they do."
          Go into one of our cities, and you find somebody on the whiz,
          whiz, like the wind passing through a broken window in December;
          and so it goes throughout the settlement. Somebody has imagined
          that the President does not understand his duty and is not
          capable of dictating, and that is all the Devil wants to begin
          with. If he succeeds in getting one toe into the stocking, he
          will work until he get his whole foot in, and confusion and
          discord will reign predominant. How many times have you observed
          such instances? You have not lived in the Church one year without
          seeing them.
          In such cases a presiding Elder may not always know but what he
          has done something wrong, and may be suspicious that this or that
          is not right. My maxim is, and it is a rule I have established in
          the Legislature of this Territory, never to oppose anything
          unless the one making the objection can present something better.
          Do not oppose when you cannot improve. If you are not capable of
          dictating your brethren, do not say that you will dictate them
          until you have found out a better path than the one in which they
          are walking. Before you oppose your Bishop as a man unworthy of
          your best feelings, first point out a better path to him; and
          then you shall have the right of going to the higher authorities
          to show that you know more than your Bishop.
          Is there a fault in some of the presiding Elders? Yes. What is
          it? Some of them are subject to a feminine, pusillanimous
          feeling. A man rises up and says, "I will dictate and oppose my
          Bishop," and some of the Bishops will dodge, and say, "I do not
          know but that I am wrong: wife, am I right or wrong?"--and say to
          every brother they meet, "What do you think about it?" and run
          round and get the opinion of everybody, to know whether they will
          sustain him or not. When men learn their duty and calling, and
          walk up to the best light they have, then, if they do not know
          precisely how to guide to the best advantage, they are right, if
          they do the best they can, and can tell all who find fault, "I
          ask no odds of you: I have done as I have, and have done the will
          of God, according to the best of my knowledge." And let every man
          treat his wives and children in the same way; and when a wife
          says, "O no, my dear, I think I understand this matter as well as
          you do, and perhaps a little better; I am conversant with all the
          whys and wherefores, and am acquainted with this little
          circumstance better than you are, and I think in this case, me
          dear, that I know better than you;" reply, "Get out of my path,
          for I am going yonder, and you may whistle at my coat-tail until
          you are tired of it." That is the way I would talk to my wives
          and children, if they intermeddled with my duties. And I say to
          them, If you cannot reverence me, tell me where the man is you
          can reverence, and I would speedily make a bee-line with my
          carriage and servants and place you under his care.
          I told the people in Nauvoo, before they wished me to stand as
          their President, that if there were any Latter-day Saints that
          did not wish to take the counsel of the Twelve, they could go to
          hell their own road: we asked no odds of them, for the Twelve
          were capable of building up the kingdom of God on the earth. You
          know whether I here ask much odds or not. I also told them that
          if they were not Saints at that critical juncture, they ought to
          repent of their sins, and get the Holy Ghost, and not live
          another twenty-four hours without the Spirit of revelation within
          themselves, for who knows but what you are the elect; and you
          know that false prophets were to arise in the last days, and, if
          possible, deceive the very elect, and that many false shepherds
          would come and pretend to be the true shepherds. Now, be sure to
          get the spirit of revelation, so that you can tell when you hear
          the true Shepherd's voice, and know him from a false one; for if
          you are the elect, it would be a great pity to have you led
          astray to destruction. But if you are not the elect of God
          through the sanctification of the Spirit of truth upon your
          hearts, then you can go as quickly as you please, for we do not
          want you.
          We feel just the same now. Every man and woman that will not
          strive to sanctify themselves before the Lord God, and to possess
          within themselves the spirit of revelation to know the voice of
          the true Shepherd from a false one, the quicker they go out of
          the Territory the better it will be. Take ten men whose hearts,
          when they pray, are upon one sentence and upon one idea at a
          time, when they ask God for anything, or to bring this or that to
          pass, do you think that the powers of hell can hinder what they
          ask for? No. It is as true as the heavens--as firm as the
          mountains that rest upon these valleys--as sure as eternity, that
          nothing can fail which they agree upon; for God will grant it. 
          What is our difficulty? When I go to my prayer-room, among men
          who have been with me for years, there is too great a diversity
          of feeling and desires to be in accordance with the Gospel. There
          is too much of Babylon in that. When that is the case, and when I
          am praying for one thing and others for another, our faith comes
          in contact and we do not receive what we ask for. How many times
          have I said that I would rather have one hundred true Saints in
          the mountains than five millions that are not Saints, if I had to
          contend against the whole world? What, with the sword? Yes. Let
          me have the Gideonites that can kneel down and lap the water, and
          one will chase a thousand to flight. Whether the Lord will
          require this people to use the sword, or not, I do not know,
          neither do I care; but I believe that if the faith of this people
          were united, all hell cannot get armies in here to disturb our
          How gladly I would tell the people what to pray for. But if I
          tell them, in ten minutes afterwards they pray for something
          else. It is too much so in the Quorum of the Twelve and among my
          Counsellors. Go into meetings, and you may hear thirty different
          prayers, if there are so many offered up, for everything but what
          I tell them to pray for. You may think I undervalue you. I do
          not. I tell you that if we strive with all our powers. by-and-by
          the time will come that we will be Saints indeed. I have not said
          that we are Saints. We are trying to be, and we profess to have
          the keys that will lead us in the path of eternal life. When we
          become so advanced that we are no more in darkness and doubt, nor
          in any way under the power of the Devil, then we have a certain
          victory over ourselves and over every foul spirit; the Lord God
          is sanctified in our hearts, and we are his servants and
          handmaids--his children, that can never be destroyed.
          Take the congregation now before me, and they pray a thousand
          different prayers. To-night, mothers, wives, and little children,
          observe how the head of the family prays, and see if he does not
          pray for nearly everything but what he should pray for. Perhaps I
          am wrong, but I think that he will be sure not to pray for the
          things he ought to. He will pray that himself and family may have
          plenty to eat and live in peace, and probably stop at that. His
          prayer will be something like a certain old man's blessing at his
          meals: "O Lord, bless me and my wife, my son John and his
          wife,--us four and no more: Amen." You will hear the brethren
          pray, "O Lord, bless me, and my wife, and children; but the rest
          I care nothing about." When you pray, pray for the things that
          the kingdom needs, and be not so very careful about yourselves.
          Your selfish notions out to be out of sight. Pray God to promote
          his kingdom and preserve you in it, and not as I have known a
          tolerably good man to pray. He was so ignorant that he would
          cheat a widow woman out of her last cow, and then go down on his
          knees and thank God for his peculiar blessings to him! Do not be
          so abominably ignorant. Instead of thanking God that you have
          been able to wrong one man out of a horse, another out of a yoke
          of cattle, &c., pray that he will give you the disposition to
          make the most righteous use of the property he has entrusted to
          your care. Pray that this people may be preserved--that the
          kingdom of God may roll on--that our Elders on the islands in the
          Pacific, in the United States, and in foreign lands may be so
          blessed as to come safely home. Pray for the honest in heart, and
          that the ungodly may be so filled with fear and trembling that
          they may leave us, that we may live here as Saints, and build up
          the kingdom of our God, and prepare for the return of this people
          to the centre stake of Zion, where we can lay the foundations for
          a New Jerusalem. Pray for the promotion of this cause and
          kingdom, instead of praying that you may be able to wrong
          somebody out of something.
          All eternity is before you, and everything you can ask for will
          be given to you in due time; for the heavens and the earth are
          the Lord's, and the fulness thereof. If I have horses, oxen, and
          possessions, they are the Lord's and not mine; and all I ask is
          for him to tell me what to do with them. A great many say that
          the Lord takes and gives as he pleases, and I think that if I act
          as the Lord does I shall do pretty well. Again, some say that the
          Lord is going to fight our battles, and enquire, "What is the use
          of our brethren being out in the mountains?" He will use his
          people as he pleases; and in the sequel you will find that God
          fought the battle, and not we.
          It has also been observed that God will provide for you. Still
          many want to shade a little, rather than to work hard for an
          honest living. Such practices must be put away, and this people
          must become sanctified in their affections to God, and learn to
          deal honestly, truly, and uprightly with one another in every
          respect, with all the integrity that fills the heart of an angel.
          They must learn to feel that they can trust all they possess with
          their brethren and sisters, saying, "All I have I entrust to you:
          keep it until I call for it." The world have no confidence in
          each other; but that principle must prevail in the midst of this
          people: you must preserve your integrity to each other.
          Live your religion. How much you are exhorted--how much have we
          pleaded with you to live your religion--to live in the light of
          God's countenance--to live with the Holy Spirit so reigning in
          you as never to be led astray, that you may know how to promote
          the kingdom of God on the earth. Let selfishness be out of sight,
          and ask the Lord to preserve you in the truth, and do with you as
          he pleases, and dispose of you to his glory.
          May God bless you. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Orson
          Hyde, November 1, 1857
                            Orson Hyde, November 1, 1857
                Remarks by Elder Orson Hyde, made in the Tabernacle,
                       Great Salt Lake City, November 1, 1857.
                               Reported by J. V. Long
          Dear brethren and sisters,--I arise to address you for a short
          time this day. I shall be as brief as possible and detain you but
          a very short time.
          The last Eastern mail, I think, brought me a pamphlet or tract
          written by Elder Orson Pratt, of Liverpool, England.
          Subject--"Gathering of the Saints and building up the kingdom of
          God." The whole matter is handled in a masterly way, free from
          blind obscurity, unchecked and unrestrained by fear, and
          untramelled by the religious or political dogmas of the age. It
          is the product of a clear head, of a strong heart, and of an
          unflinching hand. In short, it is Heaven's eternal truth. I do
          exceedingly regret having mislaid it, for I would like to send it
          to Senator Douglas, with a request that he read it faithfully
          before he applies the knife to "cut out the loathsome ulcer."
          Having read it, then, if he shall be disposed and able to cut,
          cut away and carve up to suit his own peculiar appetite and that
          also of his friends. Will some person having said tract or
          pamphlet be kind enough to mail it to Honourable Stephen A.
          Douglas, Washington City, D.C.?
          But, let all men, however, know, that if what the honourable
          gentleman calls the "loathsome ulcer" be cut out according to his
          views and suggestions, the United States will be cut off from
          being a nation, and her star of empire set, and set in blood!
          The "Mormons" can hardly be made to believe that the United
          States intend to set in good faith towards them until they hang
          the murderers of Joseph and Hyrum Smith, and punish the murderous
          incendiaries that killed our men and burned our grain and houses
          on Green Plains, Illinois. Nor yet, until they punish Missouri
          and cause the wrongs of the Saints in that State to be redressed.
          Whenever the United States Government shall begin its work of
          justice, at that end of the "Mormon" question it will find it not
          so vexed nor yet so knotty as many complain of its being. And
          moreover, such a course pursued by the Government would tend to
          convert the "Mormons" to the belief that sincerity, good faith,
          and even-handed justice towards them were the paramount
          considerations and rules of action of the Federal Government.
          A few officials, so notoriously corrupt that they became
          frightened at their own shadow, ran away, having greatly feared
          that what they justly merited might come upon them. An army is
          raised at their instigation to force them back upon us again, or
          some others, not the men of our choice, and to aid them to punish
          us for alleged crimes which they have trumped up But it will be
          hard for the "Mormons" to bring their feelings to accept any
          federal officers at the point of the bayonet or at the cannon's
          mouth, nor yet while troops are about them or on their borders.
          The contest appears very unequal, it is true; yet a wasp may
          worry a bear; and God, by his providences, has sometimes
          over-thrown the strong by the agency of the weak. In that God do
          we hope for succour and trust for strength and deliverance. 
          When we were driven from Missouri and Illinois, leaving all our
          property, except what little we could take in the hurry, there
          was no army sent to reinstate us, neither to punish our
          persecutors. Then thousands of our men, women, and children were
          forced away from their homes at the point of the bayonet, at
          mid-day and at mid-night, in the burning rays of a scorching sun,
          and in the gloomy shades of a wintry night. Our judges,
          magistrates, and civil and military officers were all forced to
          go, and no army was sent to reinstate them or to punish the
          persecutor and the oppressor. Oh, ye rulers of the land, look at
          your injustice! When the innocent cried to you for help--when the
          persecuted for conscience' sake implored your fatherly
          interference, and, with tears of blood, said to you, "Help us,
          lest we perish," you then said that our cause was just, but you
          had no power. But now that the wicked and guilty profligate cries
          to you to protect him in his corruption and force him upon us
          contrary to our wishes, you find yourselves invested with all the
          power necessary to urge an unhallowed warfare against the very
          people whom you refused to protect. O Lord God Almighty, in the
          name of thy Son, Jesus Christ, I ask thee to let the arm and
          sword of they justice interpose, and decide this matter according
          to thy righteousness, and get to thyself honour and a name that
          shall never be forgotten. 
          It may be said that sovereign, independent States are different
          from a dependent Territory. This is a door through which many
          specious technicalities are sought to be introduced in
          justification of the present action and former neglect of the
          General Government. But "Mormons" care nothing about such
          technicalities. They hold the Government responsible, and so also
          does the God of nations and of armies. Therefore, however
          strongly it may be urged that the General Government's intentions
          are good towards us, this singular people will not believe a word
          of it until said Government shall redress their wrongs in
          Missouri and Illinois. Whatever explanation may be given to the
          present movement of troops for Utah is immaterial. It will stick
          to the present Administration, in its true light and character,
          like the mark of Cain, Nero, and Herod--a religious persecution
          against an innocent patriotic people who know their rights and
          dare assert them! Though every "Mormon" in America should be
          slain, it will only add to the enormity of the present
          As well might we be made to believe that the student could solve
          every problem of Euclid, who had never learned simple addition,
          as to believe the Government our impartial friends while they
          decline to redress our wrong. The conduct of the "unjust judge"
          towards the "poor widow" might raise the blush of shame upon our
          national cheek, if the nation possessed as fine sensibilities and
          as much discernment as that "unjust judge". He saw that his own
          peace, ease, and happiness depended upon his avenging the "poor
          widow." And if the peace, ease, and happiness of these United
          States, in future, do not depend upon their redressing "Mormon"
          wrongs, (though they may not fear God, neither regard man,) then
          the Lord does not speak by me . The nation will soon find out
          whether "wrath and indignation some upon the people in the shape
          of earthquakes, thundering, and lightnings, tempests,--the waves
          of the sea heaving themselves beyond their bounds; and all things
          being in commotion, while fear comes upon all people." The
          nations may have occasion to consider the treasures of hail and
          snow reserved for the last days--even the day of battle for the
          controversy of Zion. They may yet learn that the nation and
          kingdom that will not serve Zion shall perish; yes, that such
          nations shall be utterly wasted. 
                 The prophetic glass before the eyes of the ancient
          Seers brings the rays of Jehovah's power to a focus on this
          earth, in these our days. For kings and rulers to manage their
          responsibilities in these critical times is an affair which no
          servant of God, truly enlightened, covets or desires. It will
          soon be known who are guilty of treason and rebellion against the
          only true Sovereign of earth and heaven. It may be necessary for
          the alien enemies to establish a precedent in relation to
          treason. Then the judgment with which they judge may be dealt out
          to them in equal measure, pressed down, &c. Woe unto the world
          because of offences! They must come to try the Saints and to
          establish a rule by which the Saints, in turn, may judge the
          The kingdom and government of God are the only legitimate
          jurisdiction that ever did exist. And other kingdoms and
          jurisdictions stand before God in the same light that many
          divorces stood in the days of Moses. "For the hardness of your
          hearts, Moses wrote you this precept; but from the beginning it
          was not so." For the hardness of men's hearts, God has suffered
          them to exercise temporary jurisdiction. But does this temporary
          jurisdiction authorize them to oppose him when he begins to take
          to himself his great power and to reign? No. The little stone cut
          out of the mountain without hands will roll and fill the whole
          earth, while the great image will be broken and fall, and the
          kingdoms of this world become the kingdoms of our God. Now,
          therefore, O ye kingdoms of this world, resist the decree of
          Jehovah, if you can and if you will. Fall upon this little stone
          cut out of the mountain without hands, and be broken, if you
          wish. But know ye that the way of the transgressor is hard, and
          his final cup is bitter. God bless the meek and pure! Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Heber
          C. Kimball, November 15, 1857
                         Heber C. Kimball, November 15, 1857
           Remarks by President Heber C. Kimball, made in the Tabernacle,
                      Great Salt Lake City, November 15, 1857.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          If this people will live up to their profession--that is, every
          Elder, High Priest, Teacher, Apostle, and every person in the
          Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, they never will be
          troubled; that is, we shall never be under the necessity of
          shedding much of the blood of our enemies. You have heard me say
          often that I do not believe God designs that we should delight in
          shedding blood. 
          In a revelation which God gave to Joseph Smith, he says, "It is
          not pleasing in my sight for man to shed blood of beasts, or of
          fowls, except in times of excess of hunger and famine." Go and
          read it for yourselves. If he is not well pleased with us when we
          shed the blood of beasts when we have no need of it, would it not
          be much more displeasing to him were we to shed the blood of man
          unnecessarily? It is not the Spirit of God that leads a man or
          women to shed blood--to desire to kill and slay. When the time
          comes that we have need to shed blood, then it will be necessary
          we should do it, and it will be just as innocent as to go and
          kill an ox when we are hungry or in the time of famine.
          Brother George A. referred to one revelation where the Lord says,
          "It is my business to provide for my Saints." Some people rest
          assured that God is going to open the heavens and rain down
          manna, or send the nations of the Gentiles in here and let us
          take the spoil, because he has said he will provide for his
          Saints in the last days. 
          Many have not even planted a peach tree, an apple tree, a plum
          tree, nor a currant bush in their gardens. There are many
          gardens, within half-a-mile of this Tabernacle, destitute of
          fruit trees of any kind. And again, you may see many city lots
          that are not cultivated nor planted with corn, wheat, potatoes,
          or any other vegetable; but the people who own them expect that
          God is going to provide for them without their co-operation. 
          I will ask you a question, you that have not raised even a kernel
          of grain on your gardens--What is the reason of this? Is it not
          because you have not planted it? You have not had a peach nor an
          apple. Why? Because you have not planted the trees; and do you
          ever expect to? No, not while the earth stands, water runs, and
          grass grows. Such people never will be provided with these
          necessaries, except some other man provides them. 
          Here is the earth, the air, the water, and you have been exhorted
          to cultivate these valleys and raise grain, and provide for
          yourselves individually and collectively. But, say you, God said
          to Joseph, "It is my business to provide for my Saints in the
          last days."
          "Behold, it is said in my laws or forbidden to get in debt to
          thine enemies; but behold, it is not said at any time that the
          Lord should not take when he please and pay as seemeth him good;
          wherefore, as ye are agents and ye are on the Lord's errand, and
          whatever ye do according to the will of the Lord is the Lord's
          business; and he hath set you to provide for his Saints in these
          last days, that they may obtain an inheritance in the land of
          Zion. And behold, I, the Lord, declare unto you, and my words are
          sure and shall not fail, that they shall obtain it; but all
          things must come to pass in their time. Wherefore, be not weary
          in welldoing, for ye are laying the foundation of a great work.
          And out of small things proceedeth that which is great."--Doc. &
          Cov., sec. xxi, par. 6
          We have been driven from our native land and birthplace, many of
          us, and God has brought us into these rich valleys, and says he,
          "Go to and cultivate, and raise grain, and provide for yourselves
          seven years' provisions. That is the way he is going to provide
          for you--to tell you, like a good father tells his sons, how to
          provide for yourselves. "Here I will provide land for you, and
          seed," &c. Now, go to and cultivate the soil, increase the seed,
          and provide for your wants. Now, that is good logic--good
          reasoning: it is not vain philosophy. 
          In this congregation there are hundreds of men who have not a
          mouthful to eat, only as they get it from their neighbours from
          day to day, or from week to week; and if others had not gone to
          and raised provisions, they would have perished, every one of
          them, for a temporal subsistence. Is God going to rain down
          manna? He will not do it until we are brought into circumstances
          to require it. Will he remove a mountain? No--not until the house
          of Israel are brought into such straitened circumstances that
          there is no way for their escape, except God removes a mountain
          for their deliverance. 
          The Lord says, "In the last days it is my business to fight the
          battles of my Saints." If it is his business, he will take his
          children to do it; and we are his children. You may think that
          comes right in contact with the revelations of Jesus Christ; but
          it is not so. Why does our President, our Governor, order out
          three thousand men to be in the mountains? To fulfil your
          prayers. What do you pray for? "O Lord," say you, "I ask thee, in
          the name of Jesus Christ, to hedge up the way of our enemies,
          that they may never come here." We had to send some three
          thousand men to fulfil your prayers. Who is going to fight the
          battles of the Lord, if not his people? They have got to stand in
          defence of this kingdom and Church of God in the last days. 
          If our enemies are prevented from coming here, they are prevented
          because of the Saints of God. Would they have been prevented from
          coming here if our brethren had not gone out there and hedged up
          their way? God will take his few valiant servants in the last
          days, and with them use up the world and bring every kingdom and
          dominion into subjection to the kingdom of God.
          Do you suppose you are going to sit here on your seats and in
          your habitations, and never step forth to the help of the Lord?
          Nearly one year ago, the last who came in with handcarts were
          brought in out of the mountains. Would they have been in our
          cities and congregation to-day, had we not gone out and brought
          them in? Through our faith and works they were saved from death;
          and many of them have brought forth sons and daughters unto God
          in the valleys of the mountains. Would they have done this if we
          had not stepped forth and manifested our faith by our works in
          delivering them from death?
          I think there is a Scripture somewhere that says, "By your works
          you are justified;" and again, "Obedience is better than
          sacrifice." It is the works that God expects. I may have faith as
          much as I please, and sit in my house and keep my boys at home,
          and exhort this people to stay at home; but will that hedge off
          the way of our enemies? No.
          Will our enemies come here? No, except we let them. God gives us
          that privilege. We have the right to let them in here or keep
          them out; and we choose to keep them out, and we shall do it by
          the help of God, and we shall prevail over every nation, tongue,
          and people; and every president, king, governor, judge, and every
          Latter-day Saint that lift their hands against this Church and
          kingdom shall be confounded and frustrated in their attempts.
          What! a Saint do this? Yes, a Saint that turns back unto the
          Devil takes into his tabernacle the worst spirits, which make him
          many times worse that he was at the first. 
          When pigs are washed in soap-suds, they look clean, and you would
          think them almost nice enough to live in the house; but no sooner
          have you washed them that they will go into the nastiest mud-hole
          they can find and muddy themselves all over from head to foot.
          Now, do they not look worse than before they were washed? It is
          just so with you, when you turn from your righteousness; you are
          worse than before you entered into the Church of Christ.
          Make your preparations this present season to go to and cultivate
          the soil, and raise everything you can, and then we shall have
          plenty. We have done the best we can; and if our enemies come
          upon us, God will throw them into our power, and they will become
          subject to us. "How," says the Lord, "Take that spoil and
          consecrate it unto my people." The Lord will provide for his
          Saints when necessary, and in his own way. 
          Are these things interesting to you, brethren? They are what you
          have to do, every man of you that belongs to the house of Israel.
          Are there goats in our midst? Bless your souls, if there were
          not, there would be more diseases than there now are. It is said
          that goats because of their strong smell, have power over
          diseases. Take a little assafoetida and put it on a child's
          stomach, and certain contagious diseases will not come unto it,
          probably because the assafoetida stinks so much worse than
          anything else. 
          I do not say there are many goats now. There is, however, one
          goat,--I do not know whether it is in the congregation or not.
          His face is longer than Lorenzo Dow's; and when you see such a
          man as that, you may know who I mean. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Orson
          Hyde, November 15, 1857
                            Orson Hyde, November 15, 1857
             A Sermon by Elder Orson Hyde, delivered in the Tabernacle,
                      Great Salt Lake City, November 15, 1857.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          A question arises in the minds of some few, and perhaps in the
          minds of a great many--"How will our present difficulties
          terminate? I would like to know the sequel. We have been kept in
          suspense for a length of time, and I would like to know the final
          In my opinion, there is no person that can know the final result
          of the present movements until it is seen. We have faith in
          relation to it, and the assurance of the Almighty that all will
          be well; but the exact how and manner in which it will be brought
          about we cannot tell; for it is by faith that we move, and not by
          sight. But in the course of some remarks which I may make, you
          may, perhaps, be led to a satisfactory conclusion as to what the
          final issue may be, and not only the final issue, for we are
          already satisfied about that, but with regard to the progressive
          stages leading to it.
          It is said in the good Book that "Not many wise, not many mighty,
          not many learned are called; but God hath chosen the poor of this
          world and rich in faith to be the heirs of his kingdom." We are
          furthermore told that he has "chosen the weak things of this
          world, and things that are not, to bring to naught the things
          that are, that no flesh should glory in his presence." Now I will
          quote from a modern writer:--"Say first of God above, then man
          below, How can we reason but from what we know?"
          I will go back to the days of the commencement of this Church,
          when a young man of no particular literary qualifications was
          called upon to bring to light truths that have been hid for
          ages--truths in themselves grand and sublime; yet, when brought
          forth, they were clothed in language not so eloquent as might
          please the ears of many of the learned. They were not dressed up
          in the style of modern oratory; and because of this, they were
          rejected by the fashionable and religious world. The religious
          world had been taught and completely moulded after the fashion
          and learning of this world, so that a man could not be considered
          a qualified orthodox preacher, unless he had been through college
          and acquired the learning of the age. 
          Here, then, an illiterate youth rises up with a system of true
          religion, that lays the axe at the root of every other system in
          Christendom. Look at the odds that were apparently against this
          young man, even Joseph Smith, the martyr, the Prophet of the Most
          High--without learning--without resources or friends to back him
          up--with the whole tide of popular sentiment arrayed against him,
          backed up by all the learning of the world. If we look at him
          through a worldly eye, the odds were materially against him.
               You are acquainted with the history of the Church, and well
          know how matters went on. You know the many trials to which
          Joseph the Prophet and his friends were subjected, and the
          difficulties with which they had to contend. But was there ever
          an instance when the enemy gained an advantage over the truth of
          heaven or thwarted the purposes of this illiterate young man? No.
          Did they not call to their aid all the learning and craftiness of
          the world in proportion as the cause he advocated increased? And
          did they succeed any better? When the cause became more extensive
          among men, did opposition succeed any better that at the
          commencement? Not a all.
          In process of time, the Elders went forth preaching this Gospel;
          and remember, there were not many learned--not many mighty that
          were called, and I may say, none at all. With the limited
          abilities they possessed, they went forth to proclaim a system of
          truth that laid the axe at the root of the false religions and
          false philosophy of the world; while the learning, popularity,
          and resources of the world were arrayed against us, which we had
          to meet; poor and limited in abilities, in learning, and worldly
          qualifications, we were despised and regarded as a set of
          With all the powerful odds against us, the truth greatly gained
          ground. Let me appeal to the experience of all present, while I
          ask you if you have ever known an instance where a faithful
          Elder, who has kept his garments clean and unspotted from the
          world, has ever been confounded while administering the word of
          life as proclaimed through that illiterate young man, Joseph
          Smith? To be sure, a few who may have got the "big head," or been
          puffed up in their own imaginations, have been foiled, or those
          who have been in transgression. God despises a victory gained by
          such characters. He will not acknowledge or own a victory gained
          in this cause by a corrupt and wicked member of his Church. I do
          not know positively how that is, however, and I will not stop to
          investigate it. Suffice it to say, it is the pure in heart that
          God delights to work with. Just like any good mechanic, when he
          wishes to make a nice piece of work, he wants tools that are
          sharp and clean to do it with. He will not work with dull and
          rusty tools to execute a nice job of work. 
          So it is with our heavenly Father: although he may use seemingly
          awkward instruments, yet they are polished after his mind and
          will; and he, being the master builder, knows what pleases him
          Has the greatest champion against "Mormonism" ever been confident
          enough in his own success and triumph in any debate with the
          Elders of this Church to publish his own arguments with those of
          his opponent? I do not know but there have been such instances,
          but not one now occurs to my mind; while, on the other hand, our
          faithful Elders have not been afraid or ashamed to publish both
          sides of the question for all eyes to look upon. 
          Often we have seen pieces in public journals, and also books
          published against us in burning zeal, and flaming with vengeance
          against us, and seemingly calculated to overthrow us, exposing
          what they called the wickedness of the "Mormons," beguiling and
          duping their hearers with cunningly-devised falsehoods. Very many
          cases of this kind we have seen, and have also seen their end.
          The Almighty has put his hand over them, and they have sunk so
          low that the strongest prejudiced hand against us will not now
          reach down to bring them up. Their power has become weakness, and
          their influence is blasted for ever by the breath of the
               Does the everlasting Gospel lose its influence with the good
          and pure of mankind? Upon those who are not disposed to work
          righteousness alone is its influence lost--upon those who shout,
          "Great is Diana of the Ephesians;" but with the honest,
          simple-hearted sons of men it is just as sweet now as ever it
          was; and to them its charms increase, notwithstanding all the
          trials and difficulties they endure for its sake. 
          "This Gospel of the kingdom shall be preached for a witness unto
          all nations, and then shall the end come." Was it the Gospel of
          the kingdom that was preached in ancient days--in the days of the
          Apostles, that went into all the earth, and their words unto the
          ends of the world? It was the Gospel, but I conclude that it was
          not the Gospel of the kingdom; for that was to be revealed at the
          time when the kingdom of God should be established on the earth,
          to stand for ever. "And this Gospel of the kingdom shall be
          preached as a witness unto all nations, and then shall the end
          Where has this Gospel been preached? Through the United States of
          America, in Europe, Asia, and Africa. I do not say that it has
          been sounded distinctly in the ears of everybody living; but I do
          say that the sound has gone into all the earth, and their words
          to the ends of the world. 
          I recollect a certain saying in a revelation that was given to
          the Saints in the early days of this Church. The Lord said,
          through Joseph Smith, that it became every man, after being
          warned, to warn his neighbour, that all may be without excuse. If
          all the people who have heard the word had been as faithful in
          warning their neighbours as the few Elders who are now under the
          sound of my voice have been in warning those with whom they have
          been associated, and to whom they have been sent, and among whom
          they have laboured, would not the whole world have been fully
          warned at this time? Yes.
          In another revelation to the first Elders of this Church, who had
          been forth preaching in their weakness, (being called in at
          Kirtland, Ohio,) the Lord told them to wash their feet in
          testimony that they were clean from the blood of this generation,
          and goes on to say, "Let those who are not of the first Elders of
          my Church remain in the vineyard, for their garments are not yet
          clean." Those first Elders had laboured but a short time in the
          vineyard--perhaps one or two years, when it was said, "Your
          garments are clean."
          There are Elders who have laboured from sea to sea, from island
          to island, from country to country, and have spent the vigour and
          strength of their days in the work of proclaiming the Gospel. May
          we not say, upon the same principle, that their garments are
          clean from the blood of this generation? If so, what does it
          imply? That we shall not be held under condemnation if we never
          preach to them again. And there is another thing implied in this:
          If this generation shall rise against you to slay you for your
          religion, and because you are righteous, your garments being
          clear of their blood, and you slay them, their blood is upon
          their own heads. This is what I understand by being clear from
          the blood of this generation. It is an important saying. In my
          opinion, it means more than a casual observer would attach to it.
          It is a deep saying. If you have warned, them--have called upon
          them to repent--offered them the blessing of eternal life through
          the Gospel, and they thrust it from them, let what will happen to
          them, your garments are clean from their blood. 
          Now we see that the Gospel has gone into all nations, countries,
          and kingdoms; for the man that has been warned should have warned
          his neighbour, and the nation that has been warned should have
          warned its neighbouring nation, &c.; so they are without excuse
          before God, whatever excuse they may plead before man.
          We can see the unabating success of the Gospel from the time
          Joseph got the plates until now, and the defeat and downfall of
          every opponent that has risen up to oppose its progress. If there
          had been any purpose in God that this work should be overthrown,
          would he not have suffered it to be done before this? For all
          means that could possibly be invented by the powers of earth and
          hell have been brought to bear against it, and every man who has
          risen up against it has gone down, and his published works have
          become a stink in the nostrils of even this wicked generation, to
          say nothing of the Saints. The wicked themselves are even ashamed
          of their sayings and of their writings against the cause of
          truth. Their expositions of "Mormonism," as they call them, are
          hardly cold from the press until they are dead, their influence
          killed, and there is no sale for their books. The words of the
          Apocalypse very appropriately apply to their case--"No man buyeth
          their merchandize any more."
          I will venture to say that no publication has ever been issued
          against this work, only for the purpose of getting gain. Men have
          not been inspired to oppose it for the sake of the souls of men,
          but to save their craft, their salary, their party, their honour,
          and their credit in the sight of men.
          The system of truth revealed through Joseph Smith is not clothed
          in language so eloquent as this literary generation would desire.
          As a general thing, you know, a real polished scoundrel wears the
          finest cloth--the most fashionable garb, that he may be looked
          upon as an honest man by those who judge from outward appearances
          and not righteous judgment. The truth is not always clothed in
          the nicest style, or according to the ideas of this world; but
          the Lord sends it forth in the shape of a stone of stumbling and
          rock of offence. He is not pleased to conform to the views of
          this generation. They have got to take salvation just as he
          offers it to them, or else take damnation: they can have their
          choice. It is not for them to serve up the dish they shall eat;
          but it is for the Almighty to dress it as suits himself; and if
          the sinner take it, it will heal him.
          The patient does not prescribe nor tell the doctor what he wants
          of him,--that is, supposing the doctor to be what he ought to be.
          He examines the patient, knows the nature of the disease, and
          prescribes accordingly. The patient takes the medicine, and asks
          no questions for conscience sake.
          So it is with our heavenly Father. The world is diseased; and he
          has prepared a remedy, and served it up as suits himself, not
          consulting the vitiated appetites of this consumptive generation
          to whom he administers it. It is like a root out of dry ground:
          it is without form or comeliness, without beauty, that men should
          not desire it. Awkward and unclothed as it is with worldly
          wisdom, behold, the illiterate Elders of Israel are sent with it,
          and they have marched through the colleges and literary
          institutions of the learned world, and have defeated those who
          dared to come out to oppose and put them to flight; and all their
          learning, iniquity, cunning, and worldly wisdom were turned into
          A little boy, filled with the Spirit of the living God throws out
          an idea that completely knocks in "pie" all their calculations. A
          simple sentence from the mouth of an uneducated youth often
          dissipates their profound wisdom in folly and nonsense. They know
          not what to do. They attempt to grasp a thing without form or
          comeliness. They know not where to get hold of it; and then they
          think they have hold of it, it slips through their hands. Such
          has been the great success of the preaching of the word.
          Now, then, if they resort to force of arms or to brute force to
          overpower us, may we not safely calculate that the results will
          be similar to those in the mental contest?
          "Say first of God above, then man below,
          How can we reason but from what we know?"
          So far, we do actually know and understand. It is demonstrated by
          our experience, and we are prepared to say that it is truly so.
          Behold, the wicked are unwilling to be converted by the gentle
          means the Lord God of Israel has introduced. They are satisfied
          that they cannot prevail against us by argument; and even
          polygamy, in all the glaring forms they may please to give it,
          offers obstacles to formidable for them to encounter by argument,
          Scripture, philosophy, or truth. But "overcome it must be," say
          the enemy; and "we will not rest until we have resorted to the
          last extremity. We will try the force of arms!" "Very well, if
          that is your mode of warfare," says the Almighty, "I do not
          desire it; but I will show you that I am not only a man of
          reason, Scripture, and truth, but a man of war too. If force of
          arms is your plan and mode of attack, you will find me ready to
          meet you in that and in every method you may adopt."
          Behold, they rise up in war against the Saints. The Saints
          heretofore, when attacked on moral and Scripture principles, have
          stood up to oppose the enemy. If they had not done this, the
          enemy would have overpowered us. We have always met him with the
          truth and the simple arguments which God has furnished us with,
          and have always been successful; and perhaps, had we stood up to
          oppose him with force of arms, we might have been equally
          successful: but I cannot say how that is. The time, probably, had
          not come for us to take that position; and consequently, when it
          came to force of arms, the enemy must needs be made the
          aggressor. He was permitted to prevail against us for the time
          being; and whether that was not the very means of putting us in a
          position whereby we could successfully oppose him in that way,
          when the time did come, we can easily judge. I guess it is all
          right and has worked for our good; and herein we can discern that
          our heavenly Father has exemplified a glorious truth to us, that
          all things shall work together for good to them that love God and
          are the called according to his purpose.
          If we had taken this position in Missouri or in Nauvoo, before
          breakfast they could have ordered their affairs and come upon us,
          and it would have required a standing army of the angels of God
          to defend us. But the time had not yet come; therefore the Lord
          suffered them to prevail until he should get us where he wanted
          us' "And then shall the prophecies of my servants be fulfilled in
          the scenes that shall transpire with you." It never could have
          been said, "The mountain of the Lord's house shall be established
          in the tops of the mountains," if we had remained in the valley
          of the Mississippi.
          The Lord considered it necessary that we should be removed into
          the chambers of the Almighty, or to some place prepared to
          receive us, where he might display his power, and get for himself
          a name and honour that shall never be forgotten. Sometimes a
          defeat is equal to a victory. I recollect of reading an account,
          the saying of a celebrated General, after he had gained a victory
          and lost a great portion of his men. One of his officers
          congratulated him on his victory. "Ah!" said he, "Another such
          victory would entirely ruin me."
          Sometime victory is worse than defeat. I consider that the defeat
          the Saints have suffered is tantamount to victory, and better
          than victory, because we have come to a place which the Lord
          wanted us to occupy.
          We say, against all the learning, science, skill, talent, &c., of
          this world, which were arrayed against us, making the odds almost
          enough to discourage any people but the Latter-day Saints, We
          have prevailed; and when they come to force of arms, this must
          also be overcome. They will use the force of arms; for, say they,
          "The 'Mormons' must be overcome, or they will take away our place
          and nation, and we shall be overthrown, and there will be no
          stopping these people, if we let them go on any further." And
          some think it has gone so far now that they cannot stop it. I
          endorse the sentiment. They have let it go too long for their
          I believe, when the Almighty conceives a work to do, he will
          carry it through in some way or shape. Behold, we are here, a
          little people collected together in the mountains, and are short
          of the munitions of war, while on the other hand the whole world
          if full of them. We are short of clothing, but tolerably plenty
          of food. And then look at the terrible odds that is arrayed
          against us. See their thousands of well-trained troops and the
          millions of money at their command. They can bring any sized army
          into the field, all armed and equipped with a splendid outfit.
          This is a powerful odds against us.
          The science of war has been studied by them from the beginning.
          They have kept a school at West Point, in which they have trained
          and qualified their officers to take command, and they are
          schooled in all the tactics of modern warfare, except ours.
          At the call of the President of the United States, there are
          thousands who will enrole as volunteers, and will be all armed
          and equipped, with money in their pockets and grub in their
          sacks, and no end to it either.
          Are all these any worse for us to overcome, in our present
          condition, that is was to overcome the learning, strength, and
          moral influence and power that were arrayed against us when we
          were but a handful, and called to go and preach the welcome
          message of the Gospel? Is the odds any greater? I say not. The
          God who taught and sustained us in proclaiming this Gospel in its
          simplicity will also sustain us in whatever opposition may arise
          against us, provided we have the Spirit of God in our hearts, and
          were not in transgression, we could handle them without mittens,
          because the Lord was with us.
          Just so sure as we as a people are pure and undefiled before God
          our heavenly Father, there is no power that can prevail against
          us. I do not care if they have all the paraphernalia of war the
          world can produce, the Almighty has got weapons of warfare they
          never thought of, and means of defence for his people, and he
          delights to throw his shield over those who serve him and keep
          his commandments. The odds may appear against us in the eyes of
          the world; but when we contemplate that God is for us, and that
          all the holy angels in heaven are enlisted in our behalf, and we
          have purity, and sincerity, and truth in our hearts, these are
          bulwarks which they cannot scale. God grant that we may be
          shielded with this kind of armour!
          I want not to speak in relation to a few things that pertain more
          particularly to individuals. You know, to be honest, when there
          is no temptation to be otherwise, is no particular credit to us.
          For me to have a chance to put forth my hand and steal my
          neighbour's food, when I have plenty, and I do not do it, is no
          particular credit to me for being honest. Suppose I am clad with
          all the clothing I desire, and my family also is well provided
          for in this article, for me to go and steal clothing would be
          outrageous in the extreme, and there would be not credit due to
          me for refraining from such an act. The time to test our real
          merit and integrity is when we are pinched with hunger and thinly
          clad: then is the time to test us. I do not say that a person
          going to steal under those circumstances would be any more
          justified. For a person to be forced to steal food, to save his
          life, is a circumstance that very rarely occurs with a just and
          righteous man. Should a good man, however, be reduce to such
          extremes, there is generally among the Saints, provision made
          against such emergencies, rendering stealing unnecessary under
          any circumstances. We have heard of some instance where garments
          have been washed and hung out, and have been taken by some person
          in the day time, and shirts and other articles not necessary to
          Brethren and sisters, I wish merely to say, Let our hands be
          clean, and try to the utmost of our power to get what we really
          need, and get it in an honourable and lawful way. We do not want
          to spoil the victory that lies right before us by dabbling in
          things that are not our own, neither convenient. If I were to
          apologize for such acts upon the principle of scarcity and want,
          it would be a license for everybody to "pitch in" that had a
          disposition to do so, and nobody would be safe. Let us be on the
          watch--watch ourselves, and suffer not any unlawful act of ours
          to tarnish the glorious victory that awaits us. Let us hold on
          and do the best we can, and let our neighbour's things alone,
          unless we can persuade him to sell them to us, or give them to
          us. Do not let us weaken our own confidence before God. But we
          need to march, shoulder to shoulder, upon the principles of
          purity and integrity; and as we have stood shoulder to shoulder
          heretofore, and carried this Gospel to the nations of the earth
          and been pure in heart before God, have we ever failed in
          accomplishing the purposed of Heaven? No. And I tell you,
          inasmuch as our hearts are pure as a people, full of integrity
          and the Holy Ghost, no power shall ever prevail against us from
          this time henceforth and for ever. I feel in my soul and pray God
          to bless the pure in heart, who seek to do his will, live their
          religion, and honour their God; and we shall yet see the desire
          of our souls and be satisfied.
          The priests of Christendom now say, "We cannot stand before this
          man," and they warn their flocks to keep away from the Latter-day
          Saints. "Are you reading that 'Voice of Warning?' Lay it out of
          your hands and put it out of your houses, for it is a dangerous
          book. Put away from you their tracts and books, for they are
          dangerous; and keep away, keep away from those dangerous men that
          are turning the world upside down." That is the cry throughout
          the world. What will be the cry when they come up against us and
          try the force of arms? It will be--"Let us not go up against
          Zion, for the people thereof are terrible: keep away, keep away."
          The one cry follows in the wake of the other. What makes the
          people of Zion terrible? Answer: Strict honesty and integrity
          before God. That is what will bring the cloud by day and the
          shining of a flame of fire by night; and upon all the glory there
          shall be a defence. God will surround the people of Zion as it
          were with a wall of fire, and he will make bare his arm in the
          eyes of the nation that wars against her, and she will be like a
          beacon light to seafaring men; and men will come and bring their
          clothing and their treasures, and we shall have an abundant
          supply of such things. Let us take care of what we have, keep it
          clean and patch it up, take care of our sheep and raise all the
          flax and wool we can, and the Lord will make up the balance; and
          if we do right we shall find that we have an overflowing treasury
          of every good thing; which may God grant, for Christ's sake.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / George
          Albert Smith, November 15, 1857
                       George Albert Smith, November 15, 1857
                           OPPOSITION TO "MORMONISM," ETC.
              Remarks by Elder George A. Smith, made in the Tabernacle,
              Great Salt Lake City, Sunday Morning, November 15, 1857.
                               Reported by J. V. Long.
          We have been very much interested, brethren and sisters, by the
          address of Elder Hyde; and no doubt the value of the sentiments
          advanced have been duly appreciated. As a people having a
          knowledge of the first principles of the Gospel of salvation, we
          are qualified above all others to appreciate the value of the
          truths of heaven when they are revealed to us. It is of the
          utmost importance that we divest ourselves of every corrupt and
          selfish principle and of every species of "covetousness, which is
          idolatry." To live before the Lord with honesty is a matter of so
          much importance that it cannot fail to be duly appreciated by the
          Saints of the Most High.
          Whenever these principles are presented before them, the contrast
          between the situation that we have hitherto been placed in and
          our present condition is also very striking, as has been shown us
          by the contrast drawn by Elder Hyde.
          When we had to face the science, the learning, the eloquence, the
          skill, and the intellect of the entire world--a single handful of
          us against the whole world--God bore us off victorious. His hand
          has preserved us. His Spirit inspired us, so that the mighty were
          confounded, the eloquent were put to silence, and the learned
          were constrained to say to their fellowmen, "Do not listen to it;
          do not read their books; do not hear them, nor go where they are.
          You may be deceived."
          In almost every instance, what has been by all philosophers and
          wise men considered the worst argument that ever was used has
          been resorted to--that is, brute force. You convince a man by
          brute force, and he is of the same opinion that he was before.
          You force a man to accede to your laws and rules, and his mind is
          only enslaved; and then, when it breaks loose, it is ten thousand
          times worse than if no brute force had been used. Notwithstanding
          this, the world cry, "Extermination and destruction."
          In looking over the papers that have been brought from the
          States, we find that a great proportion of them have been
          speculating on the cost of exterminating the "Mormons;" and there
          is one very uncomfortable speculation about it. One of them, in
          estimating the cost of a war of extermination against the
          "Mormons," said, "We shall have to expend from fifty to a hundred
          millions, and then we shall have nothing to show for our pay but
          naked, barren rocks." This is the condition of affairs; but it is
          a war of principle, and "Mormonism" must be exterminated, though
          it is not at all a profitable business.
          Now, there never was a man, from the time that this work
          commenced, that ever made himself popular by opposing it; and in
          future, whatever may be their attempts, it will be the ruin of
          every man that undertakes it; and this has been the case with
          every man that has attempted to make such a speculation. It never
          did and never will pay political expenses.
          The God of heaven has raised up this people. He has carried them,
          as it were, in his arms. He has cradled them in adversity and has
          brought them into these mountains; and here he wishes to nourish
          and preserve them. I never lift my heart to the heavens without
          praying to the Almighty to gather out of the midst of his people
          all those who do offend and work iniquity, and to gather out of
          the midst of Zion every corrupt heart--every man that will not
          turn from his sins, forsake his wickedness, and love the Lord his
          God with all his heart and his neighbour as himself.
          Such a people will have the blessings of God: such a people
          cannot be overthrown by all earth and hell combined. Then let us
          be such a people; and if corruption exists in our hearts, let us
          cut it out; for I can tell you we shall be sifted as with a
          sieve; and while our enemies are endeavouring to destroy us and
          desiring to murder us, to exterminate us, to deprive us of our
          existence, to wipe us from the earth, to blot out the name of the
          kingdom of God, they are only suffered to crowd upon us that we
          may be tried and purified.
          We should not desire the shedding of blood; but we are required
          by every law of nature, by every principle of righteousness, and
          by every constitutional principle upon the face of the earth,
          whether civil, political, or military, to defend ourselves and
          prevent our being broken up by others. This is a naturally
          inherited right, and God requires us to defend ourselves. And
          inasmuch as we have to defend our sacred rights, we should do it
          in the name of the Lord, with all humility, with a desire to
          sustain his kingdom; and, let what will come, trust in God for
          the result and be satisfied with it.
          Elder Hyde, in drawing the comparison in reference to the
          millions of our enemies--to the great wealth that they possess,
          showed their advantages in number and wealth. But let me ask this
          question, Have they got a thing that the Lord did not give them?
          Have they got a solitary farthing that the Lord did not bestow
          upon them? If they use that which he has given them for evil,
          they will have to give a minute account of that stewardship.
          The boasted national surplus funds are directly calculated to
          produce extravagant and unprincipled legislation, and will have a
          tendency in the end to strip them of funds and leave them in
          poverty, while the straitened circumstances of the Saints will
          only be the means of purifying, driving away, and scattering from
          their midst those who do offend and work iniquity.
          I feel to rest satisfied that the Almighty will control all those
          things for the good of this people. The Lord has said it is his
          business to take care of his Saints. If you are taking care of a
          child and are rearing it up to manhood, you have to look after
          its education, correct its morals, regulate its conduct, and
          inflect punishment when necessary, that the child may realize the
          difference between good and evil--between doing right and doing
          wrong. Peradventure the Lord wishes to have a tried people, and
          he has determined to try the Saints sufficiently, and he will
          protect them in his own way. The Lord will apply the rod.
          Sometimes he has scourged the people of Israel in one way, and
          sometimes in another. Sometimes he has scourged them with
          pestilence, with wasting, and destruction, and sometimes with
          famine, or by delivering them into the hands of their enemies;
          and in all these way he has scourged his people that they might
          know and realize that God is over them, that he control all
          There was a sheriff that came to an old lady and said to her,
          "Well, old woman, I have taken your son Jim, and I have locked
          him up on jail, where he will never do any more mischief." "Oh,"
          says she, "is it possible that Jim has gone to jail?" "Yes," the
          sheriff replied; "I have put the little whelp where he never will
          do any more mischief; and I thought I would come and tell you
          what had become of him." The old lady felt sorrowful and
          mortified at the bitter way in which the sheriff told it. "Well,
          Mr. Sheriff," said the old lady, "I hope, when the Lord has
          punished poor Jim all that he deserves, that he will burn the
          This is the sentiment that I have with regard to the means made
          use of for the purpose of punishing and sifting us, or turning
          those who are corrupt and causing them to flee away, or of waking
          us up to our duty. When the Lord gets through with them,. like
          the old woman, I would be obliged to him if he would burn the
          rod. Doubtless he will look after this matter, if we do our duty.
          It is only for us to look to the right--to live our religion, and
          all will be well.
          I know that this is the work of God, and that he will sustain his
          servants; and if we will love truth, though few, compared with
          our enemies, we shall have light, life, power, and dominion,
          while our enemies will lift up their eyes in hell, where there is
          no water. May God prepare us for all that we have to encounter,
          is my prayer, in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Heber
          C. Kimball, November 22, 1857
                         Heber C. Kimball, November 22, 1857
                           PROVISION FOR HIS SAINTS, ETC.
              A Sermon by President Heber C. Kimball, delivered in the
              Great Salt Lake City, Sunday Morning, November 22, 1857.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          I can say for one, that that is a beautiful hymn which brother
          Dunbar has just sung: ["DESERET, dedicated to Governor Young by
          W. W. Phelps."] And what has been said to-day by brothers Albert
          Carrington and George D. Grant is good, and their words, as far
          as I have heard, are salvation to all who hear and practice,
          because they are true.
          You all the time hear me talking about truth. Truth is light, and
          light is life. If these principles are cultivated by us, with our
          families, what is there to hinder us from walking into the
          presence of God, or into the presence of those who stand between
          us and him? I do not believe that we can emerge right into the
          presence of God, although we may see him, not in the flesh, but
          we can in the Spirit, if he touches the eyes of our
          understanding; but we cannot see him with these bodies of flesh.
          Joseph always told us that we would have to pass by sentinels
          that are placed between us and our Father and God. Then, of
          course, we are conducted along from this probation to other
          probations, or from one dispensation to another, by those who
          conducted those dispensations.
          If we are, as some are, guilty of doing wrong, and treasuring up
          and practicing principles that lead to death, we cannot attain to
          principles of exaltation. It is for me to do right and to do as I
          am told. Still, when brother Brigham tells me to do a thing, I
          may have that in me that would equivocate and say, "Will not such
          and such a thing do better?" I know he is interrupted in that way
          continually. Supposing I say, "Yes, that is true," when he
          speaks, and every man in Israel says the same, what has the Devil
          to do with us then? As brother Brigham says, "The Devil can do no
          more than stand and grin at us." For a man or woman to try to
          frustrate his purposes is not true philosophy, but it is the
          Devil in our camp. He says the enemies on our borders cannot come
          in here, and I say the same.
          Good works produce good faith, and faith without works is dead.
          Do not tell me about your faith, when you have not a particle of
          works with it: it is all of no account. Our works must be good:
          they must be confined to truth and the knowledge of God; and how
          can you get that knowledge without good works? Such doctrine as
          this is according to the words which God has given to his
          servants, ancient and modern.
          When the Lord spoke through Joseph Smith, it was "the word of the
          Lord to my servant Orson, to my servant W. W. Phelps, or to my
          servant Oliver: Go and do thus and so, and you shall see my
          glory." If they do not go, they do not see his glory, nor obtain
          his favour, do they? Because their works did not correspond with
          the word of God.
          You never will see glory and happiness, angels, nor anything
          else, except the angels from beneath, if your works do not
          correspond with your faith and with what you are told to do. No
          man will ever enjoy the presence of Angels, Prophets, Apostles,
          Patriarchs, Jesus, and the Father, and the sanctified who have
          passed beyond the vail, that does not live up to these
          It is well enough for me to throw out what light and knowledge I
          have upon any matter, and brother Brigham can judge as to its
          correctness or incorrectness; but it is not for me to equivocate,
          when he has given the word of decision. That is the course I have
          tried to learn; and if I am not right in this matter, I stand
          here ready to be corrected by any person who knows better. If we
          all were to take that course, our enemies never--no, never would
          have power over us.
          It is the head that governs the body, the same as the helm guides
          the ship; and if the captain does not manage the helm in person,
          he puts a man there that will run the course that he dictates.
          Says he, "It is blowing a heavy gale: make calculations to steer
          to such a point of the compass, that you may have a little
          lee-way." The captain of the ship does not take the helm, but he
          directs the one who has hold of the helm the course to steer.
          "And verily I say unto you, the rest of my servants, Go ye forth
          as your circumstances shall permit in your several callings unto
          the great and notable cities and villages, reproving the world in
          righteousness of all their unrighteousness and ungodly deeds,
          setting forth clearly and understandingly the desolation of
          abomination in the last days; for with you, saith the Lord
          Almighty, I will rend their kingdoms: I will not only shake the
          earth, but the starry heavens shall tremble; for I, the Lord,
          have put forth my hand to exert the powers of heaven. Ye cannot
          see it now; yet a little while and ye shall see it, and know that
          I am, and that I will come and reign with my people. I am Alpha
          and Omega, the Beginning and the End. Amen." (Doc. and Cov., sec.
          iv., par. 24.)
          With you, mine Elders, my servants, I will rend the kingdoms of
          this world, and with you I will provide for my Saints in the last
          That may be a new idea to many of you. Is he going to take the
          world and by them provide for his Saints? No; but he will take
          his Elders. The righteous have got to provide for the righteous
          in the latter days, as Joseph in Egypt provided for his father's
          house and those that believed on him, like a good father
          providing for a good family, for good wives, and good children.
          When I have provided for my wives and children, that is my
          business, is it not, although I dictate them to do the work? I
          bring this up as a comparison. Says the Lord, "That is my
          business. When you have done all things according to my word, you
          need not further trouble yourselves."
          Now, the Elders of this Church have been forth and exhorted,
          invited, and persuaded the world to embrace the Gospel. I have
          travelled by self hundreds of thousands of miles, and other have
          travelled more than I have, and some of you have not travelled
          any, only from your native land to this, which is but a trifling
          journey. We are now a thousand miles away from our enemies in the
          United States, and the President of the United States is over
          three thousand from us, and at the same time he has his myrmidons
          over the mountains there. What are they sent here for? To destroy
          us--to kill your leaders--to kill the Prophets, Apostles, and
          Patriarchs, with every man and woman that will sustain those men.
          I have seen the day when it was as much as our lives were worth
          to sustain Joseph Smith--the apostates were so thick around us,
          and persecution was so great. The day was when brother Brigham
          was the only Apostle on the earth, with the exception of Joseph,
          and Sidney, and Hyrum, that could say to brother Heber, Go, and
          you shall be blessed. I am reckoning brother Hyde with us, for he
          went with me on that mission to England. In connection with
          brother Joseph, brother Hyrum, and brother Sidney, brother
          Brigham said, "Go, brother Heber, and in the name of Israel's God
          you shall be blessed, and it shall prove the salvation of
          John Boynton, one of the Twelve, came to me and said, "If you are
          such a damned fool as to listen to Joseph Smith, the fallen
          Prophet, and go to England under these perilous circumstances, if
          I knew you were shipwrecked on Van Dieman's Land I would not
          assist you to get you from that land."
          I will speak to Lyman Johnson's credit: I will give every man
          credit for the good he does. Lyman Johnson steps up and says,
          "Brother Heber, I do not feel so. I am sorry you are going, and
          consider you are foolish; but if you are determined to go, I will
          help you all that is in my power; and he took from his shoulders
          a good, nice camlet cloak and put it on to mine; and that was the
          first cloak I ever had. This was in the month of June, 1837.
          [Voice: "He shall be blessed for that."]
          I was then destitute of the comforts of life, and that cloak I
          wore three times across the sea, and Parley P. Pratt wore it four
          times; and in all it crossed the sea seven times. It seemed as
          though it would never wear out.
          Those circumstances were the; most trying circumstances that ever
          I was brought into. Joseph had to flee from that land to save his
          body from being slain, and so had brother Brigham and every other
          man who would sustain the Prophet, the apostasy was so great; and
          they were most hellish in their wickedness.
          I went and performed the mission according to the words of the
          Prophet of the living God, and was gone eleven months and two
          days from Kirtland, being on that land eight months and two days,
          in which time there were about two thousand souls added to the
          Church and kingdom of God, with the help of Elders Willard
          Richards, Orson Hyde, and Joseph Fielding.
          When I came back from England there were but a few left in
          Kirtland. There was one little society of men that pretended to
          take the lead and oversight of the people, and they were guided
          by a peep stone.
          God had blessed and prospered me exceedingly, and the words of
          Joseph, Hyrum, Sidney, and Brigham were all fulfilled to the
          letter, which you all know. I was poor and weak, and did not know
          but a little in regard to this work in the latter days. My
          knowledge was in proportion to my experience. At the same time, I
          knew enough, by the help of the Holy Ghost, to confound the wise
          and to bring to naught the foolish things of this world. God has
          taken just such weak instruments as myself to bring to pass his
          great purposes. And you need not find fault with them: if you do,
          you find fault with God, who sent them.
          Now, I will tell you what I am going to do. I have heard my
          leader express himself, and I am going to do as near like him as
          possible. I am going to do what is right, whether you like it or
          not; for I would rather have the favour of my leader, and Joseph,
          and Peter, and Jesus, &c., than of all the world besides. I am
          going to flour up my wheat, put it into boxes and cache it, right
          straight, whether you do it or not. Now, you need not go to
          brother Brigham and ask him where he is going to put his, not
          where I am going to put mine; for we shall not tell you.
          There are tens of thousands in these valleys that would not touch
          or meddle with those things, if they knew where they were; and
          then again, there are others that would. There is now and then an
          individual that is dishonest. They made a practice of stealing in
          the Old and New World, where they came from, and they think it is
          no harm. If they go to work for a man and do a little job on his
          house, and he has fifty nails or screws, and there are twenty
          left, he will put them into his pocket and take them home, and
          kneel down and thank the Lord that he has got a few nails or
          screws, and thinks it is the providence of God that has thrown
          them in his way and that there were a few left. Such practices
          bring evil and destruction upon us. I was telling you what I
          should do--that I should flour my wheat and cache it, and perhaps
          I shall lay some of it by in the wheat; but I shall flour it
          chiefly; for if it comes a tight time, I shall cache some
          portions of my mill, and then I shall not have a mill to grind
          any. I will have it made into flour and put it where it will keep
          seven year. And I am also going to cultivate the earth more
          thoroughly and efficiently this present year to come that I ever
          did in my life, and so will every other man that does right. I
          told you I am going to do a brother Brigham did. Those who think
          it is not good philosophy, try the opposite. You will never get
          me to contend against him while I have my senses. I will
          cultivate my trees--my apple trees and plum trees, and set out
          currant and rose bushes, though I would rather put in a plum tree
          or some kind of tree that will yield something for the sustenance
          of the body. I will also repair and re-repair, and take care of
          what I have got. I mean to take my sons, from the oldest to those
          who are old enough, and I will qualify them to cultivate the
          soil, and will fit them out and put them into the mountains to
          watch for, and, if necessary, to fight for the interests of the
          house of Israel from this day forth, until the Lord God Almighty
          upsets their kingdoms. I never will put them to the plough again
          when they are required to stand against our foes. I will say,
          "Boys, take that team and plough, and that hoe, and put in the
          grain to provide for you while you are there;" and then, if they
          come home relieved by the manager, they can help to harvest it
          and take care of it. I will support my sons in the mountains to
          sustain this people, and in the vineyard, while I live, if it is
          necessary, as fast as they come to maturity, or to mechanism,
          cultivating the earth, &c., so as to know and understand all
          branches of business and be qualified to teach their children;
          and so will every other good man and woman who live their
          religion. For, says the Lord, with you, mine Elders, I will rend
          their kingdoms; with you I will provide for my Saints in the last
          We have invited the nations to receive the truth, but they will
          not, nor let us go to them; and now God is going to compel them
          to come in by famine, war, and every kind of desolation; and they
          will come faster than we can provide for them. Then let us awake,
          and not lie down and sleep, and go home and act as though we had
          not heard anything.
          I am telling what I am going to do: I have heard our leader talk
          so. Then I will do as he says. I would not give a dime for a man
          that would not. Get out of my way, you poor stinking curses that
          would pursue a course contrary to the word of the living God! I
          am at war with such spirits. I want to know how we can be one,
          unless we are one with the head? When the head speaks, let every
          man and woman listen and obey.
          I do not care so much about the women obeying as I do the men. I
          am not talking about them, but you, Elders of Israel, that have
          the Priesthood. Women have not a particle of Priesthood, only
          what they hold in connection with their husbands; neither have
          the men, except that which they hold in connection with those who
          hold the keys of the kingdom at head quarters. Do not step out on
          one side and say you have Priesthood independent. You have not a
          particle in that way. I was ordained to be an Apostle under the
          hand of Oliver, and David, and Martin; and then it was confirmed
          by Joseph of the First Presidency. Now, I want to know what
          authority of Priesthood I have only as I act in concert with
          those who gave it to me? They are God's agents and had power to
          ordain me.
          Brother Brigham is my head; therefore that power is all in him. I
          act in oneness with him in all things, and sanction his purposes;
          and in so doing I sanction the purposes of God, of angels, and
          all heavenly beings. But, let me turn away and be independent of
          him, and where is my Priesthood, or where is my authority?
          What power has one of my wives to act independently of me? She
          has not a particle of power. She must act in connection with me,
          as I do with my head, or the limb acts in connection with the
          tree from which it springs. You see dead limbs on trees. Will
          they ever come to life again, after they are dead? No. They must
          be cut off and thrown back into the earth, to return back to
          their mother element, and become again quickened by the law they
          were ordained to keep; and if they are not quickened by that
          power, they will never be restored again to that tree. No more
          will you. You have got to keep that law pertaining to that tree,
          limb, or government, or you will never be restored again,--never,
          no never, while the earth stands.
          Will any man ever be redeemed upon any other principle than what
          we are redeemed upon? No. Men must abide the same law, or God
          Almighty will never redeem them. If they violate that law, they
          bring damnation upon themselves, and must suffer the consequences
          of it. Still, I believe the greater part of the inhabitants of
          the earth will be redeemed; yea, all will be finally redeemed,
          except those who have sinned against the Holy Ghost or shed
          innocent blood; and they never can be redeemed until that debt is
          paid. And I do not know any way for them to pay it, unless they
          are brought back again to a mortal existence, and pay the debt
          where they contracted it.
          God will make every man pay off the debt he contracts; for a
          restoration must take place, which has been spoken of by the
          mouth of all the holy Prophets since the world began.
          When a man breaks a law of God, he must pay that debt, unless God
          forgives him; and he has a right to do that, the same as I have.
          Still, my forgiving him does not pay the debt; for if he has
          stolen ten dollars from me, and he comes to me and asks my pardon
          for stealing the ten dollars, I forgive him. But does that
          restore the ten dollars of stolen money?
          How does it look for a man holding the Priesthood to be
          dishonest? When a man is employed by me, he has no business to
          meddle with a thing unless I tell him to. Still, he may do many
          good things I do not tell him to do. God says he is not pleased
          with a man that has to be commanded in all things.
          I have had men work for me, who, if there was the least thing
          left after the job was done, would take it to themselves. This is
          done in the public works by some few individuals. I do not like
          such things. Brother Brigham has lost, from time to time,
          thousands of dollars' worth of property in this valley. I have
          chastised men for taking things from him myself, when I have seen
          them do it,--men old enough to be my father, and men of middle
          age, and those sweet delicate females. How do I look upon you?
          You rob me of the most precious gem when you rob me of the
          confidence I have in you. And I am that kind of a being, it
          seems, that it is very hard to have that confidence restored
          Let me do a dishonest act towards brother Brigham, and it is a
          hard case for his to overlook that, or to regain the same
          confidence in me he formerly had. I am not a man that goes to him
          to prejudice his mind against any person; no, I never do such a
          thing. Still there are a great many things I could lay before him
          that would hurt his mind against some. I do not do it. No: I make
          you appear well before him. Others take the opposite course. Do I
          like it? No: I have no friendship for such; for, say I, "You
          would injure me, if you could, as well as any other man."
          I remember the teaching Joseph gave me. My policy is to be honest
          and virtuous; and the wives and children and property of the
          Elders of Israel are held sacred in my bosom as I would wish them
          to hold mine; and that man who is not of that character is not a
          friend to the kingdom of God, and they cannot enter there; for
          the liar, hypocrite, whoremonger, and those that love to make
          lies, the sorcerer, and dishonest person are without the gate,
          according to the word of God. Such things have got to be done
          I wish I could live the remaining portion of my life among a
          people where everything I had would be as safe as in my own
          possession; and when my wife goes into a neighbour's house to
          visit, she may not come home with seven devils more that she took
          away with her. That gives the Devil and his emissaries power over
          us. You will see sorrow, if you do not stop this chin-music, and
          tattling, and speaking evil one of another. Here are troops over
          here: they want to come in; but it has been said from the
          beginning that they will not come in. And they will not, for we
          will not let them. We have sent our boys out there, and they are
          going to keep them back; and they will do it from this time
          forth, if you will do right. Now, supposing you go to cache your
          wheat, corn, flour, service berries, dried fruit, &c., and a
          little sugar made from the cane of our own raising, some may say
          this time is all lost, if our enemies are not coming in. Well, is
          it not all the better to spend our time digging holes and caching
          our stuff that to spend it in being in the mountains.
          Brother Brigham says he does not intend to burn up the houses,
          and cut down our fruit trees, and push over our walls, and this
          thing and that, until we come to the last pinch; and then you
          will see a flame, such a one as you never saw in Salt Lake. I
          will burn up my houses, my barns, and granaries, should the Lord
          require it. You have heard me say, many a time, I would have more
          joy to see my family in the mountains--to see the in rags, in
          sheep-skins, and goat-skins, than to see them enjoying all the
          pleasure God ever gave to man and serving the Devil withal; and I
          would rather do it, if it is to be next year, than ever to
          succumb to the acts of such an ungodly, pusillanimous President,
          with his coadjutor, as those that govern our nation.
          These are some of my views: you are welcome to them, and I charge
          you nothing for them. I received them from God, and they cost me
          nothing. And, as far as they are correct, receive them in your
          hearts, and they shall be unto you as a well of water springing
          up into everlasting life; and every man, woman, and child will
          grow and increase by observing them.
          If you do not do these things, you will see sorrow. My heart
          says, "O Lord God, have mercy on this people, and help them to do
          thy will, and keep them in they truth. I pray and weep, lest the
          unrighteous among us lead away the righteous. Is it better for
          them to die? Yes; it is better for you to die according to your
          covenants a thousand times than to turn to wickedness and then
          lead away the righteous. But I doubt very much if you can lead
          away a people that are inclined to righteousness. You cannot lead
          away the elect; "For they will hear my voice, and strangers they
          will not follow."
          There will always be a majority of this people that will stand
          while all hell boils over, and they will overcome; and I bless
          them, in the name of Israel's God, with the blessings of life and
          with the blessings of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob for ever; and I
          bless all those that bless and protect Israel. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Brigham
          Young, November 22, 1857
              A Discourse by President Brigham Young, delivered in the
                      Great Salt Lake City, November 22, 1857.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          Much has been said here to-day with regard to that class who are
          unruly and forward--who are subject to do evil. I presume that
          great majority of this congregation have concluded to place all
          those remarks upon those who do not come to meeting. Doubtless
          the few--yes, the very few characters that have been referred to
          by the brethren to-day are at home studying mischief. It is very
          seldom that you will find a thief in this house--a person that
          plunders his neighbours. But if you will go into the streets, you
          will find certain persons in the different Wards who have an
          excuse for not attending meeting. Some are so very industrious
          that they cannot attend meeting. I would not doubt much but what
          we could not go to several houses and find women at work; they
          are so very industrious. And it is often the case that some men
          are so industrious that they cannot find time to get a load of
          wood without going for it or returning with it on Sunday. That is
          really the case with those who do not love "Mormonism:" they have
          embraced it because they know it is true and think it will shield
          them in their iniquity. It is seldom that such persons come to
          meeting. I conclude that the remarks which have been made to-day
          are designed for those persons who are disposed to do evil; but
          there is probably only a very few or none of that class present,
          and we shall have to depend upon you to tell them what has been
          said about them. I am thankful that it is my honest conviction
          that there are but a very few of that class in our community.
          There are a great many people who do wrong because they have not
          the standard of right and wrong within them, but permit
          themselves to be governed by the prejudices and education they
          have received among the different nations and neighbourhoods
          where they have been trained. You may find some persons who have
          within them the standard of right and wrong: they can tell when
          they do right--what is right, and judge themselves as easily as
          they can others; but of this class there are but a very few. And
          were I to say that there are none who are entirely free from the
          prejudices and prepossessed ideas gathered in their youthful days
          from their parents, teachers, and friends, I should say what is
          strictly true. Still we are studying and trying to learn how to
          discern between the evil and the good, the right and the
          wrong,--between that which is of God and that which is not of
          This people are mostly gathered from what are termed the
          labouring and middle classes. We have not gathered into this
          Church men that are by the world esteemed profound in their
          principles, ideas, and judgment. We have none in this Church that
          are called by them expert statesmen. How frequently it is cast at
          the Elders, when they are abroad preaching, that Joseph Smith,
          the founder of their Church and religion, was only a poor
          illiterate boy. That used to be advanced as one of the strongest
          arguments that could be produced against the doctrine of
          salvation by the wise and learned of this world, though it is no
          argument at all. The Lord should have revealed himself to some of
          the learned priests or talented men of the age, say they, who
          could have done some good and borne off the Gospel by their
          influence and learning, and not to a poor, ignorant, unlettered
          youth. Not many wise, not many mighty, not many noble, speaking
          after the manner of men, are called; but God hath chosen the
          foolish things of the world to confound the wise, the weak things
          of the world to confound the things that are mighty; and base
          things of the world--things which are despised by the world, hath
          God in his wisdom chosen; yea, and things which are not to bring
          to naught things that are, that no flesh should glory in his
          Men were too wise in the days of the Saviour to receive the
          Gospel, and we see the same disposition exhibited in our day. The
          world spurn the idea of receiving truth from a person they look
          upon as inferior to them in the talent, learning, and cunning of
          the present generation. Perhaps they might bow to the
          requirements of Heaven were an angel to personally visit them
          individually, and exalt them to high places, and give them the
          influence, power, and glory that are of this world. We have none
          of those men here: we are all of the labouring and middle
          classes. There are but few in this Church who are not of the
          labouring class, and they have not had an opportunity to
          cultivate their minds, to search into the history of the nations
          of the earth, to learn the prejudices that are upon the people,
          their education, feelings, and customs. We have mostly come from
          the plough and the furrow, from the mechanic shops and the loom,
          from the spinning-jenny, the kitchen, and wash-room. This people
          have not been educated in the devilry and craft of the learned
          classes of mankind, and consequently possessed honesty enough to
          embrace the truth. That is the character of the class of people
          before me to-day.
          Who is capable of judging? We do not look for that talent and
          great judgment from the common people that we would naturally
          expect from those who are called the refined and educated. There
          must be an opportunity given them for improvement before we can
          expect the same refinement and classical attainments which the
          higher classes, so called, boast of. The higher classes have
          nothing to do only to study the nature of man, their own
          dispositions, and those of their fellow-beings. We can look upon
          them as they really are, and truly we are compelled to conclude
          that the devilry, mischief, dishonesty, craft, corruption, &c.,
          that are taught and practiced among the higher classes, have
          prevented them from receiving the Gospel. But the poor,
          half-starved labourers, those who feel as though they want a
          friend, who look around for some source of happiness, for some
          arm to lean on, for some eye to pity them, are the ones who have
          honesty enough to receive the truth.
          What should we expect from such a class of people? I have my
          reasons for justifying and my reasons for condemning; I have my
          reasons for liking this people and my reasons for disliking the
          conduct of some; and I believe that I look upon them very much as
          the Lord does. He pities the human family; they are objects of
          his mercy and commiseration. There are men in this community who,
          through the force of the education they have received from their
          parents and friends, would cheat a poor widow out of her last cow
          and then go down upon their knees and thank God for the good
          fortune he had sent them and for his kind providences that
          enabled them to obtain a cow without becoming amenable to any law
          of the land, though the poor widow had been actually cheated. We
          see that trait of character in mankind. Are such persons capable
          in all things of rightly discerning between truth and error? No.
          But they, through their traditions, can judge every person but
          themselves: they can weigh every person in their scale of
          justice; but they never think of trying themselves. That proceeds
          from the force of education and false tradition upon their minds,
          and some still remain ignorant of many of the true principles of
          right and wrong, although they have embraced the Gospel.
          Brother Kimball told the truth this morning with regard to many
          of our mechanics. I have not built a house since I have been in
          this place but what I have furnished many more pounds of nails
          than I would have to do for the same piece of work in the States.
          I knew that some of the workmen took them, and I told them so.
          They need not undertake to deceive me, for I know precisely what
          they do. Since the days of reformation, I have had many a one
          come to me--honest me to all appearance--men that you would
          almost have sworn were as holy as an angel, and confess that they
          had stolen nails from me, or a waggon, &c. But they have not yet
          become honest enough to bring the stolen articles back. In what
          condition are they, after such a confession, without making
          restitution, compensation, or some kind of satisfaction? Just as
          they were before. To me, taking and keeping another's property,
          without leave, is stealing; but to many, they consider it a
          godsend to have another's nails to carry home in their pockets.
          That often is the consequence of tradition, rather than an innate
          disposition to steal. I will relate a circumstance to corroborate
          that statement. I once knew a man in this Church who told me
          that, when he was in the old country, he would, if possible,
          spoil his work, in order to be employed to do it again. He was a
          plumber and glazier. As soon as he had finished a fine window or
          a large sash for a hot-house in a gentleman's garden, he would
          place it in a situation where it would be sure to be broken to
          pieces, that he might thereby secure employment; and when he
          received the second job, he would thank God for his kind
          providences toward him. To him, in his tradition, and amid the
          oppression of the labouring classes, that was just as honest as
          anything could be. But here they are not so oppressed.
          To this day, if you employ masons to do a valuable piece of work,
          many will so do it that the wall or building will last only a few
          years, and then believe that to be honesty, whereas I believe it
          to be dishonesty. And joiners, with few exceptions, will so hang
          doors, put up mantlepieces, put on roofs, and lay floors, that in
          a short time all their work is out of repair or good for nothing.
          Very many, through the power of erroneous education, do not know
          what honesty and dishonesty are, and are not capable of judging.
          Observe the artisans in any branch of mechanism, and you will
          learn that what I have stated is true. Then you may take the
          class called merchants, also the doctors, the priests in the
          various sects, the lawyers, and every person engaged in any
          branch of business throughout the world, and, as a general thing,
          they are all taught from their childhood to be more or less
          Those who have their eyes opened to see and understand where
          honesty and uprightness are, what righteousness is, and to
          discern between that which is right and that which is wrong,
          often rise here and talk about it. I do so myself; and when I
          speak of dishonesty among the people I look at them as they are,
          whether I tell it or not. This is the most honest people on the
          earth. There is more honesty in this community than in any other
          community on the earth--that is, that we have any knowledge of.
          The great majority of this community are as honest as they know
          how to be. I have stated that I had not found a man honest enough
          to bring back what he had taken from me; but those persons are
          poor and can make a reasonable excuse. One of the best men I ever
          hired to labour for me--one whom I paid well for all he did for
          me, took some of my tools; that is to say, he borrowed them and
          never brought them back. Well, he is poor. Will I forgive Him?
          Yes. They may steal from me as much as they please, and I will
          forgive them as far as they ought to be forgiven. They may say,
          "You have plenty, brother Brigham." That is true; and, so far as
          I can remember, I have never stolen a pin's worth in any way,
          shape, or manner, except the taking a few melons or a little
          fruit, once in a while, when I was a boy. Have I cheated any of
          you, or wronged any of you in any way? If I have, I would be glad
          to have you tell me wherein. Have I oppressed the labourer in his
          wages? If I have, let the man come and tell me of it.
          Some think that I am very close and economical. I am; and I will
          tell you wherein. When a man comes to labour for me--one who will
          only leisurely do two or three hours' work in a day, and wants as
          much pay as a man who will do six time as much, I am not willing
          to pay him for idling away his time. If I have a man labour for
          me who can do six days' work in one, did I ever refuse to pay him
          for the amount of labour he performed? Ask Isaac Hunter if I ever
          refused to pay him wages to the full amount of labour he could
          perform in a day. In this valley we have estimated laying rock in
          a wall to be worth one dollar a perch. Ask any mason, when he
          laid ten perches in a day, if I ever refused to pay him ten
          dollars. But if a man wanted three dollars and a half for laying
          one perch, I am not willing to pay him at that rate. I will
          suppress dishonesty, but I never oppress honesty.
          I have tried to suppress dishonesty in individuals, and have
          tried thereby to make them honest. If I hire a carpenter and pay
          him three dollars a day, and he is three days in making a six
          panel door that a good workman can make in one, or even a door
          and a half, I do not want to pay him three dollars a day for that
          labour. Yet some who are here have no more judgment, discretion,
          or idea of right or wrong, than to want to be paid for labour
          they do not perform; and that they consider to be honesty: but it
          is just as dishonest as anything in the world.
          I am willing to pay men for what they do. I am anxious that all
          should have that which belongs to them, and wish them to let that
          which belongs to be alone. If I furnish nails to build a house,
          the workmen have no right to carry them off. When using nails,
          the mechanic often has more or less in his pocket. At
          quitting-time he forgets to take them out, and carries them home.
          He goes out to chop a little wood and says, "Dear me, these
          nails"--some twenty or thirty, or perhaps more--"are quite a
          burden to me," and he puts them out of his way. By-and-by he
          wants to build a pig-pen, or to build a little addition to his
          house, and 'feels quite thankful that he has the nails to do it
          with, and will praise the name of the Lord for the manner in
          which he has blessed him. I do not want blessings on such
          grounds, and I never expect them in that way, because I have the
          natural sense to know better. Others also will have it, if they
          will continue to try to find out how to judge between right and
          wrong in themselves as they do in another individual.
          You may go to High Councils, though we do not have many in these
          days, and to Bishops' Courts, and hear a trial between parties
          that have quarrelled with each other, and you will readily
          perceive that if those individuals could judge themselves as they
          judge each other, there would have been no difficulty between
          them; they would have settled their affairs between themselves,
          and the best of feelings would have been established for each
          other. But people cannot judge themselves as they can others nor
          look upon their own conduct as they do upon the conduct of
          others. We must learn to look at ourselves, to judge ourselves,
          and know how to deal with ourselves, and that will enable us to
          bring ourselves into perfect subjection to the law of Christ.
          Are the people striving to do right? Yes, they are. It has been
          observed that we are pretty clear from those unruly spirits that
          have been in our midst. So we are; but you need not flatter
          yourselves for a moment that the Devil has left us. You will find
          that he marshals his forces more particularly against this
          people; and if we are now clear from those unhallowed spirits and
          the tabernacles they occupied, you may expect that he will, if
          possible, find somebody here in whom he can have a resting-place.
          You will learn that the wicked disembodied spirits have not left
          this people, though the most of those wicked persons who sought
          to destroy the Saints have left us. There are myriads of
          disembodied evil spirits--those who have long ago laid down their
          bodies here and in the regions round about, among and around us;
          and they are trying to make us and our children sick, and are
          trying to destroy us and to tempt us to evil. They will try every
          possible means they are masters of to draw us aside from the path
          of righteousness.
          Do you not think that we need to watch and pray continually--that
          we need all the time to keep a guard over ourselves, that we may
          preserve ourselves in the love of the truth? We do. It should be
          our constant study to guard ourselves on every side against every
          attack of the enemy of all righteousness.
          Cease looking at others. Cease to judge each other. Go into a
          family where there are two women belonging to one man, and from
          that to as as many as you can find, and you will soon learn that
          almost every woman can judge all the family but herself; and that
          she thinks that whatever she does is just right: she would not do
          a wrong for the world. Then go to the next woman that was said to
          be so out of the way, and with her it is, "I am exactly right,
          and the other is wrong." They do not rightly look at their own
          failings, views, and passions. If they were all capable of
          straightening themselves, they would not come in collision with
          each other, but would all conclude to walk together in the
          straight and narrow path, whereas now they are at times almost
          diametrically opposed to each other. Is that the case? Judge ye
          for yourselves. That is not the case with every family, to my
          certain knowledge; but it is so with too many. It is just so with
          the brethren. You find more or less of the same difficulty
          everywhere you go. It is, "I am right, and your are wrong."
          You have been taught the standard of right. Now subdue your
          rebellious passions, dismiss everything that you know or consider
          to be wrong, and embrace that which is better. Get wisdom and all
          the light you possible can, and never live another twenty-four
          hours without the Holy Spirit of the Lord, and that will give you
          joy, peace, comfort, light and intelligence, by which you can
          grow in grace and in the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. I
          cannot reach these attainments, neither can you, only by the
          light and intelligence which flow from heaven, you may say,
          "Brother Brigham, you are like the rest of us: we see our faults,
          but we do not like to acknowledge them; we like to have them
          covered up and kept out the sight of our neighbours." If you find
          a secret fault, dismiss it secretly. Let your faults go behind
          you; turn them overboard, and for ever disown them. If no person
          but yourselves has seen your faults, you are blessed. You may
          then get rid of them without their being made manifest to others.
          If men and women, and more especially women, for they love
          chit-chat, when they feel in any way bad or a little cross, or
          feel as though somebody is out of the way, and feel like finding
          fault with their neighbour and exposing this one's fault and the
          other one's fault, would only be as secret on the faults of
          others as they are on their own, it would be beneficial to their
          welfare and of their neighbours. When a person opens his mouth,
          no matter what he talks about, to a person of quick discernment,
          he will disclose more or less of his true sentiments. You cannot
          hide the heart, when your mouth is open. If your want to keep
          your heart secret, keep your mouth shut.
          Some say, "I feel as though I must boil over, and I must talk to
          relieve myself." All hell is boiling over; but does that make it
          any better? No. If you let your tongue run, and it scatters the
          poison that is in you, it sets the whole being on fire. The
          Apostle James says, "And the tongue is a fire, a world of
          iniquity; so is the tongue among our members that it defileth the
          whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature, and it is
          set on fire of hell." And again, "But the tongue can no man tame:
          it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison." Are you aware of
          this, sisters and brethren? If you keep silent, you can master
          your feelings, can subdue your passions, and ultimately become
          masters of them and banish them from you. If you give way to your
          unbridled tongues, you increase anger within you, and the first
          you know your blood is boiling with wrath. That is what the
          Apostle meant when he wrote, "It setteth on fire the whole course
          of nature, and it is set on fire of hell." It is hell that sets
          it going. If you find that you cannot keep your tongue still, get
          some India-rubber and chew it with all your might. Do as brother
          Joseph Sharp did when he assisted in conveying Mrs. Mogo to the
          soldier's camp. He considered that the soldiers rather imposed
          upon him and his brother Adam, and he was for fight; but Adam,
          who is not so impetuous, coaxed him to the waggon, where he laid
          down on his face, and in two hours chewed up almost the whole
          plug of tobacco. In such cases a good piece of India-rubber is
          better, cheaper, and will last longer; though it would be better
          for your to chew up a whole plug of tobacco than to have a real
          quarrel with your tongues. You would not in a long time get over
          the effects of a quarrel: it would be like a cankerworm to your
          There is not a person on the earth, that has sense enough to know
          what experience is, but what, if they would bridle their tongues
          and subdue their passions, could say, "I have not injured
          anybody--no, not even myself." It is not matter how you are
          tempted, if you do not give way to temptation; but if you give
          way to temptation, it carries you to destruction. If you give way
          to your angry feelings, it sets on fire the whole course of
          nature, and is set on fire of hell; and you are then apt to set
          those on fire who are contending with you. When you feel as
          though you would burst, tell the old boiler to burst, and just
          laugh at the temptation to speak evil. If you will continue to do
          that, you will soon be so masters of yourselves as to be able, if
          not to tame, to control your tongues,--able to speak when you
          ought, and to be silent when you ought.
          Let the mechanics and all others try to improve as you have.
          There has a great improvement taken place in the midst of this
          people, and we will still continue to improve. Let us seek unto
          the Lord for wisdom, until we can rightly judge all matters that
          come before us--until we can judge ourselves and our neighbours
          with equal justice, and so continue to improve, until we come up
          to the standard of truth in all our acts and words; so that when
          I employ a mason to lay me up a wall, he will do it honestly, and
          so on with every other workman. Then if a man does not earn his
          wages, he will not ask them or take them. Now it is--"I want all
          I can get." Honesty never comes into the hearts of such persons;
          their rule is to keep what they have got, and to get all they
          can, whether honestly or not, and pray for more.
          When the eyes of your understandings are opened to deal
          righteously with each other, then my axes, shovels, &c., will all
          be safe, if they are left in the barn. But it has been so that my
          harness was taken, my picks and shovels, my waggon, wheels, and
          tire, and everything else that could be was carried off. When we
          have attained the improvement I anticipate, I can lie down in
          peace at night and enquire, "Wife, have you brought in those
          clothes that were hung out?" "No." "All right--no person will
          meddle with them." I would rather persons who are destitute would
          come to me and say, "We need a pair of pantaloons, a hat," &c.,
          and give me a chance to assist them. But when they steal, I
          cannot trust them.
          I would rather give a woman a dollar than have her come to my
          house saying, "Do you want to buy a pound of butter?" "Yes. What
          do you want for it?" "Twenty-five or thirty cents," as the case
          may be, and then stop with my family and eat a great deal more
          butter than she sold to me. If they would come to me and say,
          "Brother Brigham, I want to sell this butter, for I have no way
          of living only by my labour," it would be another thing. If a
          poor woman should come to me and say, "I want fifty cents to
          purchase dye stuffs," here it is; you are welcome to the money,
          but do not undertake to sponge on me.
          Let my nails, tools, and other property remain where they belong.
          Work honestly and deal honestly one with another. Evil practices
          in a great degree spring from the traditions of the people; they
          are so educated. They have been taught, in different parts of the
          world, that if they found a thing, though not many yards from the
          door of the owner, it belonged to them. "This belongs to me now,
          for I have found it." Did you earn it? "No; I found it." That and
          a thousand other traits of human life tend to lead the people
          astray. They seldom stop to think whether they are right or
          We need to learn, practise, study, know, and understand how
          angels live with each other. When this community comes to the
          point to be perfectly honest and upright, you will never find a
          poor person: none will lack; all will have sufficient. Every man,
          woman, and child will have all they need just as soon as they all
          become honest. When the majority of a community are dishonest, it
          maketh the honest portion poor, for the dishonest serve and
          enrich themselves at their expense. You know that I think that
          this people are the best people that there are; yet we need to
          train ourselves, to study ourselves, and study the principles of
          truth and righteousness, until we can discern that which is right
          from that which is wrong in the least particular within
          ourselves; and you will find that to answer every purpose,
          without judging our neighbours as much as many do.
          As to this people being a good people, I say, God bless you all
          the time! Who else will do as this people do? Nobody else. All
          you have is on the altar, ready to be offered up for the kingdom
          of God. You could hardly find a man or woman in this congregation
          but what would take the clothing from their backs to promote this
          We are telling you all the time to do as you are told; but do you
          do it to that extent which you will in a few years to come? No.
          Why? Because you do not know how. I know that this people are
          doing a great deal better than they did years ago. Could Joseph
          do with this people as I and my brethren now can? No. Were this
          people in the situation they now are when Joseph was alive? No.
          Joseph was running the gauntlet among his wicked enemies all the
          time. He hardly knew a man in the kingdom that he could put
          confidence enough in to call for a dollar to help him out of a
          difficulty. He did not know how many would stand by him when a
          mob gathered against him. He had a few faithful, tried friends;
          but he had many around him who would betray him into the hands of
          his enemies.
          I am not afflicted with such persons in the midst of this people;
          but there is confidence and a concentration of faith; and we will
          so improve that, when a man rises here to pray, there will not be
          a desire from the heart of a man or woman but what is uttered by
          the one who is mouth. When we come to understanding, there will
          not be as many desires and prayers as there are people, while one
          is officiating as mouth for the whole; but when he who is mouth
          prays, every heart will wait until he utters a sentence, and that
          embodies what they also desire. When the sisters meet together
          and appoint one of their number to pray, they will never let a
          desire escape from the heart until they know what the mouth is
          praying for. Then they all will desire the same and pray for the
          same. This people are hastening to that degree of perfection.
          I thank the Lord all the time, and I bless the name of Israel's
          God that I live in this day and age of the world, and that I am
          associated with such a people. Is there any misery, sorrow, and
          affliction here? I do not know what trouble or sorrow is. Do I
          feel for others? Yes, all I ought to feel.
          I know what the sorrow of the world is. It works death, and I
          have long ago bid good-bye to it. If I am sorry for anything, I
          try to have a godly sorrow to benefit me. My heart is cheerful; I
          am happy and thankful all the day long; and I believe that I am
          in the light. I have not asked for a lantern, only from the
          Almighty; and I know that the whole people are daily progressing,
          ascending, and increasing in good works and in faith and
          knowledge, even the knowledge of God; and we are doing the works
          he desires at our hands.
          It would do you good to look out yonder in the mountains and see
          our brethren warmly clad and well provided for. The brethren and
          sisters here in the neighbourhoods round about have liberally
          answered to our calls, and every time have supplies more than was
          called for. Will they part with everything, if it is called for?
          Yes. I have heard but of one man, since the brethren went out to
          watch the enemy--a man up north, who really wished the brethren
          to spare his ox; but they butchered him before his eyes. I said
          amen to it. If his god can be slain as easily as that, it is an
          excellent thing for him. If any of you have gods in horses, or in
          oxen, make an offering of them forthwith, and tell the boys who
          are going out that they are welcome to them. They are welcome to
          all mine. If you don't believe it, try it.
          We are a blessed people, and we shall be preserved from our
          enemies, if we continue to do right, and the Lord will sustain
          us. And I can tell you that this people will do right and God
          will sustain us. Ere long Zion will triumph and the glory and
          knowledge of God will cover the earth, and we will still be in
          the old ship Zion and ride all wicked opposition down to
          destruction. May God help us so to do. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Amasa
          M. Lyman, November 22, 1857
                          Amasa M. Lyman, November 22, 1857
                                     UNITY, ETC.
            Discourse by Elder Amasa Lyman, delivered in the Tabernacle,
             Great Salt Lake City, Sunday Afternoon, November 22, 1857.
                               Reported by J. V. Long.
          I can say, my brethren and sisters, in truth to my own feelings,
          that I have been gratified to-day in what I have heard. I have
          been edified; and, what is more, I feel that there is only one
          great reason why we do not realize more fully the blessings that
          would accrue to us, if we were sufficiently faithful, or as
          faithful as we might be to the principles inculcated in the
          remarks that have been made; and that reason is, we do not, to
          the extent that we might, "live our religion."
          We are not as perfectly united as we might be. I think that this
          is true. It is as certainly true as it is true that, if we could
          keep the law of God perfectly, we should realize a corresponding
          degree of happiness, peace, and affection in everything that
          should be made the subject of conversation or of thought, or that
          should become a matter of principle with the people. It is for us
          to cultivate that principle within us that should unite us
          together--that should cause our affections to be one, our
          feelings to be one, our interests to be one; for in this is our
          It may be truly said of us, as it is in the world, that we are
          united; and they say all the time that, whatever our leaders say
          or propose, we all go to work and sustain them therein. I would
          to God that it was true to a greater extent even than that to
          which our enemies may consider it to be true.
          When we are compared with other communities in the world, it
          might be said of us that we are a united and happy people, for we
          enjoy a degree of union and blessings resulting from that union
          that other communities do not enjoy. But this does not show that
          we do not fall far short of the perfect union that should cement
          the Saints of the Most High together.
          If we could discover and be made sensible of any means by which
          we could become more perfectly united--more perfectly one, that
          would be a matter of importance to us. It would be of value to
          us, as it would lay a foundation with us for an increase of our
          intelligence; it would increase our chances of success--our
          chances of victory in the great struggle with the enemies of our
          God--with our foes within and our foes without. If we could but
          cultivate these principles with all our hearts, with all our
          faith, and all our souls, then our struggles would be barely
          begun when we should be able to rejoice in the enjoyment of
          "Well," says one, "If we are influenced by the same Spirit--if we
          all do as the Spirit dictates, shall we not be one? If all the
          people--the individuals that compose this community, were
          individually to be operated upon by the Spirit of God--were all
          enlightened by the Spirit that reveals the will of God, that
          makes known his purposes, and that imparts to the benighted soul
          an understanding of the purposes of the Almighty, so that we
          could appreciate them, there is no doubt in my mind but that the
          people would all see alike, and consequently act alike. But is
          this the case? With all our advantages--with all the instructions
          that have been given--with Heaven's kindness in the continued,
          unremitting stream of revelation that has been poured out upon us
          for a score of years and more, have we become so enlightened--got
          understanding so that we all see alike, that we all understand
          alike? We have but to look and contemplate what we see exhibited
          around us to become satisfied at once that this is not the case
          with us as a people. If it were so, such admonitions as are
          called out from the Presidency of the Church would be uncalled
          for; they would be unnecessary; the people would not be
          admonished to be more united, to be more diligent and strict in
          remembering the principles and in practicing the instructions
          that are from time to time imparted unto them.
          Now, while we cannot sufficiently comprehend the things of God by
          the Spirit of God to save us from error, and from mistakes, and
          from disunion, what shall we do? Why, let us humbly adopt the
          advice, or similar advice to that which is given by the ancient
          Apostle to his brethren in addressing them. He says, "We have
          also a more sure word of prophecy, whereunto ye do well that ye
          take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until
          the day dawn, and the day-star arise in your hearts."
          Now, I do not quote that Scripture to direct you to be over
          anxious to learn all that the ancient Apostles may have said that
          might be adapted to the Saints in that time and under those
          circumstances; but I want you to act in this as they were
          admonished to act in that time; and if you cannot judge perfectly
          by the portion of the Spirit of God that you possess, remember
          that you have a more sure word of prophecy that is imparted unto
          you from day to day, from Sabbath to Sabbath, from month to month
          and from year to year, unto which you do well that you give heed.
          And the sequel will be, if you give heed unto it, that by-and-by
          the day will dawn, and the day-star of experience, of heaven, and
          of truth, and of God will arise in your hearts, and the fountain
          of light and life will become established within you.
          Well, then, until this is the case, adopt the maxim inculcated in
          the song of one of our poets, who writes--
          "We'll mind what Brigham says,"
          Pay attention to the inspiration of the Almighty from those in
          whom it lives and dwells--in whom it is a living fountain, as it
          must be in you, individually, before you will be saved from sin.
          Let us remember, if we cannot comprehend, by the Spirit that is
          living within us, all the truth in relation to what we should do
          and how we should act as we travel along, that we should attend
          to their instructions, and do what they say. If they instruct us
          to pray, let us pray; and if they instruct us what to pray for,
          let us pray for that; and when the fountain of inspiration is
          opened within us and becomes a living part and parcel of
          ourselves, then we will know for ourselves and comprehend for
          ourselves, and the President of the Church will not have to say
          from day to day and from time to time, "Wake up from your
          slumber." He will not have need to tell us of our diversity of
          sentiment and feelings. There should exist among us a perfect
          unanimity of feeling.
          If we wait for the Spirit of God to do everything, what are we
          doing the while? We are idling away our time; we are neglecting
          to use the means placed within our reach for our benefit and
          improvement. God has raised up in his Church Apostles, Prophets,
          and Teachers,--for what purpose? Simply that you might be
          instructed--simply that you might be taught and brought to the
          knowledge of the truth. What truth? Why, the same truth the
          Apostles and Prophets understand--the same truths that the
          Seventies, High Priests, Elders, and the servants of God
          comprehend. It is to bring you to the same knowledge of God,
          which is eternal life.
          This is all the purpose that is to be accomplished in all this
          labour. If is the object of these ordinances, the institutions of
          heaven, to bring us from our ignorance, our want of knowledge,
          our lack of understanding, to a comprehension of the truth; and
          when we are brought to that point and place, no matter if we are
          counted by thousands and tens of thousands, the blessings of the
          Gospel are ours, if we are united; for we all occupy the same
          ground, we understand the same truth, and we are all in the same
          relationship with truth and with God, which make us one. I causes
          us to feel alike, to think alike, and to act alike.
          If this is the case when we pour out our supplications to the
          heavens, what will be the character of those supplications? They
          will all be marked with the same consistence: the same
          understanding of the truth will dictate them. Our will will
          simply be the will of our President. Well, then, what will we
          pray for? We will pray for nothing but what will subserve the
          cause of righteousness; we will ask for nothing but what is
          consistent with the principles of truth and our own advancement
          in the comprehension of those principles. Would we ask for
          anything that the heavens would deny? No, we would not. Would our
          prayers ascend up without hindrance? Yes, they would. For what
          reason? Because they were marked with union, with truth, with
          consistency, and righteousness; consequently, they must be
          acceptable unto our heavenly Father.
          What is the reason our prayers are not all answered? The reason
          is simply because we ask for things that our Father in his wisdom
          knows would do us no good. They are not answered, because we
          should cause our Father to defeat himself, if he were obliged to
          answer all our petitions, all our prayers and supplications. To
          have our prayers acceptable, they must be consistent; we must ask
          for nothing but what is pleasing in his sight, in order that our
          Father may hear and answer our prayers; and in this way we
          receive that for which we ask.
          Now, to gain this point, it is desirable, because of the
          advantages that we shall secure when it is once gained.
          It is possible that it may be the case that some may think there
          are other matters of greater importance to us and that should
          possess a higher interest to us than for us simply to become
          united through the truth. But if there is anything of greater
          importance, it is something that I do not know--that I have not
          learned. Victory has been promised unto us, upon the condition
          that we do right.
          If there are any things connected with our present circumstances
          that are, to some, more than usually alarming or exciting, I do
          not know any good reason why they should be so; for if the work
          with which we are connected is the work of God, as we feel, and
          as most of us are often saying that we understand it, why should
          we be more excited this year than we were last year? Why should
          we feel any more uneasy when there are a few United States'
          troops in the hills than if there were not? This is no less the
          work of God for their being there. Our Father is as near to
          us--his care and his protection is as much over us and round us
          as it was before; and it is not more so, unless we get a little
          closer by observing more perfectly his requirements.
          I fear that is the clouds were now all dissipated and driven
          away, and if the sunshine of prosperity should begin to shine
          upon us, some would forget God and the duties they owe to him and
          to one another: I fear that we should forget the sacred
          obligations which we are under.
          I have never seen any time since I have been connected with the
          Church when I felt as much freedom, as much liberty, or as much
          of the Spirit of truth--the blessings of freedom and peace that
          it inspires, as I have since I have known that our enemies have
          been in our borders. The reason why I feel this way I suppose to
          be because of the great blessings that are pending at the present
          time; and I suppose that which would be a reason for my feelings
          so well should be a reason for the same good feelings with all
          Saints, if they only possessed the same Spirit.
          "Well," says one, "Do you think that you are more holy than the
          rest of the people?" I do not know whether I am or not; but I am
          fortunate, at any rate, if it is any piece of good fortune to
          feel at ease and free from trouble and perplexity. Are you not
          troubled? No. Are you not miserable? No. I am not troubled nor
          miserable. Why? Because I am happy.
          If the people all felt so, they would not be very much troubled
          about anything. I do not say that I feel to pray with any more
          interest, with any more earnestness, with any more zeal, than I
          did before we heard the news that this army was on its way to
          Utah. I am no more disquieted in my feeling; and why? Because it
          is a settled conviction with me that this is the work of God, and
          I have no idea that there will be any failure, only that which is
          on the part of the people. The only anxiety that I have is that I
          may keep myself firmly bound to "Mormonism"--to the car of the
          kingdom of God and the work of God; and if God rolls on his work,
          as we have been told he would, during the last few weeks, we
          shall soon see his kingdom spread and extend to an amazing
          As the Lord has said it is his business to provide for his
          Saints, I have the promise of being provided for, If I only so
          conduct myself as to merit the title of a Saint. As to the way an
          the means how it is to be accomplished, that is none of my
          business. Whatever the Lord wants of me, he will let me know,
          because, if I keep myself right and straight, I shall always be
          on hand to respond to the directions of those that lead me and
          dictate me, and who should direct my movements.
          Well, then, I am happy; I am as easy in my feelings as I well
          could be, unless I knew something more to feel well about; and I
          expect, when I know and understand more, that my happiness will
          be increased; for I expect that I shall understand many things
          that are now no source of joy and pleasure to me, simply because
          I know nothing about them. But so far as I have a knowledge of
          truth, that truth makes me happy and contented; and if I can be
          contented, I feel as though I would like to see all the people
          contented. If you cannot feel contented by the spirit that dwells
          within you all the time, adopt the old Apostle's maxim--"We have
          also a more sure word of prophecy, whereunto ye do well that ye
          take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until
          the day dawn and the day-star arise in your hearts." (2nd Peter,
          chap. i. 19.)
          Listen to and carry our the instructions of brother Brigham, of
          brother Heber, and of all that speak the words of life and
          salvation unto you. If they tell you to go home and cultivate
          peace in your family, go and do it; and if they tell you to go
          home and cease your stealing, go home and be honest, and quit
          your stealing.
          This is the way to be united; and if you will be honest and
          united, you will get the Spirit of God; and the more you have of
          the Spirit of God, the better you feel and the better you will
          act. Talk about people feeling well that act as mean as the
          Devil!--it is nonsense. Does a man or woman feel well that will
          steal, that will traduce a friend, speak evil of a neighbour, and
          seek to stir up strife? No; they cannot. Does an individual feel
          well that will lie and cherish opposition to the advice, the
          counsel, and instruction that is given us from the Prophets that
          God has placed in his Church to rule and dictate us? If I were to
          judge other as I feel myself, I would judge that they could not
          feel well. Why? Because I feel well in acting with them--in
          saying amen to what they say. I feel and find the happiness that
          I enjoy by doing this, and no man or woman can find happiness in
          pursuing an opposite course; and if you are unbelieving, it is
          because you do not comprehend the truth and all your hearts--you
          do not understand it.
          Well, how are you going to get better? Why, commence to do
          better. If you have indulged in lying, you know it is a sin;
          therefore, cease your lying. If your have stolen, quit it, and
          die unto sin. The reason you do not dwell in the life of
          righteousness is because you are not yet dead unto sin: the
          reason you do not live is because you are not dead; you are
          neither living nor dead.
          You are instructed to pursue one course, and you will take
          another: you are instructed to subject yourselves to the will of
          Heaven, and you are all the time imagining and thinking, and
          something is in you minds that unsettles your faith and divides
          your affections. Hence, you do not enjoy the Spirit of truth to
          the extent that you would, if you would subject yourselves to the
          will of Heaven. Do as the men do who instruct you and lead you,
          and do it with your whole hearts. As the President said in
          reference to praying, do not hunt up any sentiments in your own
          souls; do not hunt up something to pray for when another is
          praying; but listen to the man who is mouth, and pray as he
          prays, and let your whole soul go out in the energy of his
          expression. Then what will be the result? You will become imbued
          with the same energy that he has; and if he feels well and right,
          you will feel well.
          Take this course, and the fountain of knowledge and eternal life
          will by-and-by be established within you. This is what we are
          seeking for. It is the rich boon of heaven that we are striving
          for; and why is it that we do not get it? It is here; it is all
          around us. We can look--we can travel to the place where it is.
          Why do we not enjoy it? Simply because you will not enjoy it.
          This is all the reason. How much do you enjoy? Why, all that you
          are willing and capable of enjoying--all that your prepare
          yourselves to enjoy,--just all that you render yourselves worthy
          of in the sight of God; and if you would enjoy more, live
          better--apply your minds closer and closer to the principles of
          the Gospel.
               If you live your religion in going to meeting on Sunday,
          live it also on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and every
          day and every night, until everything adverse to the truth is
          expelled from your household--until your family circle becomes a
          sanctuary where the Spirit of God abides--where it imparts its
          life-giving influence to all that come within that circle.
          If this were the case, it would constitute the Zion of our God.
          We should have Zion within, whether we were at home or abroad, or
          in whatever circumstances we might be placed.
          "Why," says one, "I suppose that I must do some great thing." Let
          me tell you to try to do some small thing; and if you attend to
          the little things, when you become men and women in understanding
          and in the knowledge of the truth, it will be time enough for you
          to undertake the work of men and women in Christ.
          How much can we do? If we were to be judged by our conduct and
          the course that we take, it would appear that our capacity is not
          very great; and if we do not know enough to attend to the simple
          instructions that are given to us here,--if we cannot attend to
          things that are thus simple, how could we get along with greater
          questions, should they come before us? We have now as much as we
          know how to get along with and manage properly, without grasping
          after things beyond our present comprehension.
          Brethren and sisters, I hope, and I not only hope, but am certain
          that, as a people, we shall adopt the principles that have been
          taught us, and practise them to so great an extent that our
          Father will accept of us--that he will not forsake us--that he
          will not turn his hand against us, but that it may be over us in
          mercy continually, and that victory, through his goodness, may
          perch upon the banner of Zion from this time forth and for ever.
          I want that we should be good enough--sufficiently meek and
          faithful before our Father and his servants, that we shall find
          acceptance with him continually. That we may be so wise as to
          pursue this course in our lives, is my prayer in the name of
          Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / George
          Albert Smith, November 29, 1857
                       George Albert Smith, November 29, 1857
                           KNOWLEDGE OBTAINED FROM HISTORY
          Discourse by Elder George A. Smith, delivered in the Tabernacle,
                      Great Salt Lake City, November 29, 1857.
                               Reported by J. V. Long.
          It is, as usual, with a degree of satisfaction that I arise
          before you this morning for the purpose of offering a few
          reflections, hoping that my brethren and sisters will exercise
          faith to that degree that I may be able to speak freely and
          communicate such sentiments as may be pleasing in the sight of
          our heavenly Father and a benefit to ourselves.
          From my childhood, history has been a favourite theme. I have
          loved to read historical works; and for the little time I have
          been enabled to devote to reading in my younger days I acquired
          some general knowledge of what is termed "profane history," but
          only a limited knowledge of what is termed "ecclesiastical
          history." It did not please me to read the quarrels of the Popes
          and the cruelties that were inflicted by the dominant powers upon
          the weak. Those matters never pleased me so much as to read the
          movements of nations for the purpose of establishing dominion and
          extending empire; consequently, I am not prepared to speak as
          readily of the history of the religious world as I would upon
          that portion of history that is generally denominated profane--of
          the political conditions of different nations at different ages
          of the world.
          A revelation given in the early history of this Church requires
          the Elders to acquire a knowledge, of things present, of things
          to come, of things that have been, and so forth. In perusing the
          histories of Persia, Arabia, India, China, and the nations of
          modern Europe, I have felt in accordance with the instructions
          given in the revelation.
          At the time I could not conceive why it was that the Lord
          required his servants to acquire a knowledge of those nations and
          of political subjects; but experience has taught me that he had
          in it a design of no little importance; for, from the time that
          the Gospel was first preached, baptism administered, and
          ordination first conferred the Priesthood upon the heads of men,
          we have been constantly and continually upon new ground. The
          officers of the country in which we have lived could never find a
          law to fit our case; they could never discover any law that would
          answer their purpose in relation to us.
          There was one principle laid down by them, however, that was
          simple; and that was, that we had to be used up.
          The most honourable of all the mobs that have ever been raised
          against us was that of Jackson County, Missouri; for they came
          right straight out and plainly acknowledged that the civil law
          did not afford them a guarantee against the "Mormons;" therefore
          they would drive them from their county,--peaceably if they
          could--forcibly if they must.
          From that day to this, our persecutors have been pretending to
          act under colour of law so far as to hold men while they could be
          murdered. They would employ a few troops or a mob, under the
          pretence of legal authority, and hold men still while the
          assassin could do his work. This has been the course pursued by
          our enemies all the time up to the present hour.
          Inasmuch as we observed the laws of God, we had no occasion to
          violate the laws of our country; and, as a matter of course,
          pretexts were sought in vain from the beginning to the end, and
          the hue-and-cry of treason has been raised from one end of the
          country to the other. Hence we see the importance of our Elders
          understanding the national force of laws of kingdoms, the laws of
          empires, the rules of nations, the relationship of institutions
          one to another, and the relationship of subjects to their rulers.
          An old principle, laid down from the earliest ages of British
          jurisprudence, from which we received our national institutions,
          is that allegiance is that ligament or thread which binds the
          subject to the sovereign, and that, for this allegiance, the
          sovereign, by an implied contract, owes, in turn, protection to
          the subject; and the very moment that the Government withholds
          its protection, that very moment allegiance ceases.
          This is as old as the British constitution, and it is recognized
          as natural and eternal both in America and Great Britain; and you
          may trace this principle back through history to the earliest
          ages of man. The very moment a government ceases to protect its
          subjects, that moment they are at liberty to protect themselves.
          Whenever national powers were exerted to crush the rights of
          their own subjects, then the right was founded in nature that
          they should stand up in their own defence; and the principle of
          self-preservation is in a greater or less degree binding, and it
          has been acknowledged from the earliest ages that all governments
          derive their just powers from the consent of the governed.
          For something like a hundred years the kings of Great Britain, as
          you will see in King James's translation of the Bible, claimed
          the title of Kings of Great Britain, France, and Ireland,--a
          power which they could not exercise and maintain, so far as the
          kingdom of France was concerned; and finally, in the reign of
          George III., they saw fit to disclaim it.
          The assumption of this right was a mere burlesque. Could they
          control the organization of France and regulate its internal
          policy? No--they could not. The only thing was to go to war, and
          then France could resist and sometimes menace the very existence
          of the British Empire, and yet the kings of England could claim
          to be kings of France. But were they kings of France? Not unless
          the people of France said so; for the people choose their kings
          to reign over them.
          This system of claiming authority from some distant claim has
          been practised, and is at the present time; and there is now an
          individual who claims to be king of France, who assumes that
          title--an individual who does not live in France: he is expelled,
          but yet he claims to be the sovereign of France. At the same time
          the people have, by the unanimous voice, place Louis Napoleon
          upon the throne, and they carry out his decrees, while a fugitive
          claims to be king of France, but without the consent of the
          people, and has not power enough to pull an old setting hen off
          her nest.
          Circumstances might change so as to throw Napoleon from his
          rather uncertain seat, and might place some other individual
          there; but no Government can exist there only by the consent of
          the people, or such a portion of them as is sufficient to awe the
          rest and preserve peace, union, and harmony.
          Tyrants have attempted to resist this principle, and hence almost
          every man that has got into power has immediately gone to work to
          lay plans to conciliate the great and mighty sovereign people,
          and to perpetuate that authority in their families.
          History shows us that some of the Roman Consuls attained power
          and wealth by the military exploits, and then assumed the title
          of Emperors and rulers over the commonwealth. We find that they
          assumed that title by the consent of the military power, and that
          they enlarged themselves by the aid of the military, till they
          finally gained the supreme power over the people.
          All officers and authorities that depend upon the bayonet are
          very uncertain; hence very few of the Roman Emperors ever came to
          a natural death. They who hold millions in subjection by the
          sword are slain as tyrants whenever opportunity affords. These
          characters have not all the peace and happiness that might be
          wished for.
          Rulers have assumed to control the people by the power of the
          bayonet, and many who have attempted to do so have fallen in the
          attempt, and many have fallen into political disgrace and been
          destroyed because they attempted to crush down the feelings of a
          free people. It was in consequence of this that the American
          revolution was brought to pass.
          The American revolution was simply the result of attempting to
          coerce, by the point of the bayonet, measures that the people of
          the colonies were unwilling to consent to. The Parliament wished
          to impose, without their consent, rulers, taxes, and laws which
          they themselves had no voice in making; and this brought about a
          revolution, which ended in establishing the present Government of
          the United States.
          The Constitution of the United States was only a little
          enlargement of the freedom guaranteed under the British
          Constitution, our revolutionary fathers not thinking any other
          position or principle as safe or as good; and they made it to
          surround them with a degree of security, as their fathers did in
          British Constitution, forming it somewhat after its model and
          style. Instead, however, of a hereditary King, they elected a
          President to hold office for four years; and instead of a House
          of Lords, they elected a Senate, composed of members or
          representatives elected by the several State Legislatures; and
          instead of a House of Commons, they elected the House of
          Representatives by an apportionment of the people; and in fact,
          the organization is very similar to that of the mother country.
          The President represents the hereditary Sovereign, the members of
          the Senate representing the States, and the House of
          Representatives the people of the United States, instead of
          having the members of the House of Commons who represent the
          property of the realm.
          In tracing these things down, and examining and well considering
          them, they show us, as it were in a glass, our real position.
          Now. I do no suppose that there was a man scarcely in the whole
          assembly who anxiously desired in his heart to move a thousand
          miles into the middle of a desert with his family, to live in
          this barren, desolate, cold country. I do no suppose there was an
          individual but would have preferred to inhabit the vacant
          prairies of Illinois, Iowa, or Missouri, than to have been under
          the necessity of wandering into a desert, surrounded by
          mountains, in the midst of sage plains, where nothing could be
          raised except by artificial irrigation.
          We were willing to come here, simply because we were forced to go
          somewhere where we could enjoy our religion, which we could not
          do where we were. This is the principle that brought us here.
          This is the reason that we were willing to forego the ten
          thousand comforts that could surround us in the world, and come
          and turn the wilderness into a fruitful field. Of necessity, I
          say, we came here willingly, because we were forced to. There was
          no place else for the Apostles and Prophets to go.
          We petitioned the several States and also the United States for
          an asylum where we could enjoy ourselves; and all our petitions
          were answered with coldness and indifference, and there was not a
          place in the United States where a man that professed to be a
          Latter-day Saint could have peace. There was nothing but to be
          mobbed, driven, his houses burned, wherever he might be; and no
          governor, no legislature, no authority would extend any better
          prospect than the repetition of the murder, robberies, and
          persecution we had suffered in Missouri, and that we were then
          enduring in Illinois.
          Under these circumstances we came here, and silently and quietly
          continued coming away from every part of the Union, and our
          friends from other nations flocked here from various parts, until
          we had conquered the desert, and turned the mountain streams, and
          caused vegetation to grow, and produced grain of considerable
          variety and of excellent quality. We had begun to make ourselves
          comfortable, and we had the prospect of peace, as there was
          nobody upon the face of the earth that would have inhabited this
          sterile country--a thousand miles from civilized society, where
          there were no inhabitants but a few naked, savage Indians, whom
          we cared for an befriended.
          The gold fever broke out, and thousands of the gold miners from
          all nations passed through our settlements. We fed them, for they
          came here naked and destitute, and we enabled them to proceed on
          their way, or they would have starved to death in the desert. But
          although we did this, scarcely an individual desired to stay in
          this barren country. They could look around and then say, "You
          are a pack of damned fools to stay in this barren desert;" and
          they would ask, "Why do you stay here in such a barren country?"
          It was for something more precious than gold: it was for the
          privilege of worshipping God under our own vine; and it was with
          greatest difficulty that we could raise a vine to worship under,
          and there was scarcely a tree grew in the valleys. Here we could
          worship, and here we remain, and what is the result? The moment
          that our settlements had extended far to the south and to the
          north--the moment that we were placed in a position that
          starvation did not stare us in the face, and that a man dare eat
          as much as his appetite craved, without thinking that he would
          have to go without tomorrow, that moment the great nation, of
          which we are a part, rich in gold and silver, powerful in
          numbers, wealth, and learning, place themselves in a position to
          annihilate us, to drive us from our homes and the fastnesses of
          the mountains.
          Now, my brethren and sisters, we remember that all good
          governments are by the consent of the governed; we remember the
          old principle that allegiance is the thread which ties the
          subject to the Government, and for which the Government owes the
          subject protection. I ask, Did the Government of the United
          States ever extend its protection to us? Did it protect us in
          Missouri? Did it protect us in Illinois? Did it protect us in
          Iowa? Did it protect us in Nebraska? No, never. We had to protect
          ourselves or perish and share the fate that lambs share in the
          paws of wolves. This is the principle as it is presented to us.
          Have they ever protected us in these mountains? No: we protect
          ourselves. We made the roads, we explored the country, and we
          have protected them whenever they passed here; and we have fed,
          clothed, and aided them on their journeying, and extended every
          kindness; but have they protected us? No; but they have stirred
          up the savages of the desert to destroy our weak settlements.
          This has been the result, and yet we have not been ten years upon
          this soil. We have not been scarcely able to acquire the comforts
          of life. A man has scarcely dared to eat as much as would satisfy
          his appetite. We had scarcely done this, I say, until they sent
          their armies by thousands to dragoon this people into subjection,
          with the avowed aim and object, as published in every paper that
          comes from the States, to deprive us of our religions rights, and
          to establish and inflict rights or practices which we abhor, and
          which we have moved a thousand miles to avoid. I ask them, Shall
          freedom depart? And, in the language of a Roman, I ask which you
          prefer--slavery or death? Shall they be left to trample upon the
          rights of free men? Who will not consider which is to be
          preferred--FREEDOM OR SLAVERY? Shall this people be left to the
          mercy of men who come here with armies to enforce principles that
          are as degrading to us as degradation can be?
          I presume, brethren and sisters, that there is but one feeling
          upon that subject. I presume that we are willing to dispense with
          our tea, with our coffee, our tobacco, our finery, and a hundred
          other comforts that we might have had, had we remained in the
          States as others have done, rather than be subject to this
          degradation and cursed dominion.
          May God enable us to hold up our heads, and with all our might,
          mind, and strength, and our reliance in the Most High, live our
          religion and be prepared to inherit his glory, is my prayer.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Erastus
          Snow, November 29, 1857
                           Erastus Snow, November 29, 1857
             Remarks by Elder Erastus Snow, delivered in the Tabernacle,
                      Great Salt Lake City, November 29, 1857.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          I am satisfied that that portion of the citizens of Utah who
          first sought out this mountain retreat have seen and experienced
          enough of the actions of State Governments and of our National
          Government--have suffered enough at the hands of officers of
          State, and by the treatment they have received from mobs
          organized to operate against them, independent of all law, or
          nominally under the colour of law, to discern clearly the
          tendency of that spirit which pervades this people and the spirit
          of opposition which pervades our enemies.
          The unbelieving world, which have rejected the Gospel revealed
          unto us, and a large portion of this people--those who have
          immigrated to this Territory within a few years past, have not
          had the benefit of the experience which the minor portion of this
          people have had; consequently, they have not had forced upon them
          that series of reflections so well calculated to mature their
          minds and enable them to contemplate with great precision the
          final result of all efforts brought to bear against us by our
          enemies for the overthrow of the work of God in the last days. I
          presume there is not one of the early members of the Church but
          what fully anticipated the crisis which has now come upon us. The
          spirit of prophecy and revelation has been in the midst of this
          people from the beginning, and has continually foretold this
          event; and one who was no more than the son of a Prophet, with
          the benefit of past experience and an observation of the spirit
          of this people and that of our enemies, could not fail to see
          that such must be the result, sooner or later.
          At every step this kingdom has advanced, the opposition of the
          ungodly has also advanced. Their hate of the truth has never been
          laid by. It has seemed to slumber at times, only to wake up with
          renewed vigour and fresh determination and strength to operate
          against the truth; while on the other hand the Lord has given
          this people seasons of rest, that they might take breath and have
          an opportunity of sending their missionaries to preach the
          Gospel, that the honest in heart might be gathered out from among
          the wicked, who are struggling to crush out of existence the last
          vestige of truth and righteousness upon the earth.
          That portion of the citizens of this Territory who were
          personally acquainted with the history of this Church and with
          the Prophet Joseph Smith in his last years are not able to view,
          in the present movement of the United States' troops, in the
          measures of the General Government and Governmental officials,
          and in the spirit of the people at large, an attempt to carry
          out, if possible, the same policy that was enacted in the last
          days of Joseph, which resulted in the expulsion of this people
          from Illinois.
          There is, however, some little difference. Since that period this
          people have grown a little more numerous; and, instead of being
          within two hours' ride of Carthage and Warsaw, they are a
          thousand miles from the frontier settlements of their enemies.
          Instead of a military encampment in a corn-field just on the
          outside of the city of Nauvoo, it is now on the other side of the
          mountains, about 115 miles from the City of Great Salt Lake.
          The pretended designs of our enemies towards us remind me of the
          speech of Rolla in the play of "Pizarro." Descanting upon the
          promises of the bloody and treacherous Spanish conquerors of his
          countrymen, he says, "They offer us protection. Yes, such
          protection as vultures give to lambs, covering and devouring
          To their unsought and uncalled for protection, our answer should
          be--"When the State of Missouri, in obedience to her own laws,
          shall have hung up by the neck ex-Governor Boggs, Austin A. King,
          old Generals Lucas, Clark, and Wilson, and about twenty-five
          hundred of her citizens, who were engaged in murdering the
          Saints, plundering them and driving them from their homes;--when
          they have repudiated the acts of their corrupt Legislature and
          returned four-fold to all whom they have robbed, with the lawful
          interest thereon until the time of payment, reinstating those who
          have been driven from their homes and possessions, making good,
          as far as money and means can do it, their losses;--when Illinois
          shall have done the same, and the General Government shall take
          action to maintain the citizens of this Territory in the rightful
          possession of all the land they have purchased of them, from
          which they have been driven by the force of mobs, and then admit
          this people, without a groan or complaint, but with brotherly
          love, kindness and fatherly care, to the free and undisturbed
          enjoyment of life, liberty, and all those political rights that
          belong to American citizens in common, of which the chief is the
          right of being governed by men of their own choice and of
          worshipping God according to the dictates of their own
          consciences, the principle thing for which our fathers
          fought;--when our Government shall do all this and cease their
          threats and menaces to intimidate free men, call home their "dogs
          of war," and set them to administering justice on the scoundrels
          at home and keep away their mean, dirty sycophants, whom they
          wish to force on this people for their rulers at the point of the
          bayonet,--then we may begin to think of having a little
          confidence in their high pretensions; then they may talk to us
          about their boasted protection and their regard for the rights of
          Until they have done all these things and are willing to pay this
          Territory some portion of the few hundred thousand dollars which
          it has expended to preserve peace with the savages around us, we
          shall have no reason to think that they are honest or sincere in
          their intentions. Otherwise, we shall be compelled to regard them
          and their armies as we now look upon Governors Ford of Illinois
          and Boggs of Missouri, and their murderous clan of mob forces,
          even as whited sepulchres, fair without, but within full of dead
          men's bones, rottenness, and all uncleanness. Until then, we
          shall have no guarantee for trusting one particle to them or
          their promises.
          When we have trusted in the Lord our God, kept his commandments
          and revered his laws, he has not betrayed us nor forsaken us in
          trouble; but he has ever stood by us and led us forth out of
          affliction, and has given unto us Governors and Judges and
          Counsellors after his own heart, to feed this people with
          knowledge and understanding--to lead them forth in the paths of
          peace, unity, and love.
          We are satisfied with our present rulers. When we have trusted in
          our God and his servants, we have been happy and blessed; but
          when we have trusted to the enemies of our God, we have been
          pierced with many sorrows.
          If any of the citizens of this Territory have not as yet
          experienced enough of the tender mercies of this generation and
          the promises of corrupt officials of the United States
          Government, and they wish still to trust in them a little
          further, they have the privilege. The way has been kept open for
          them to leave. Although martial law has been declared in this
          Territory, and persons are not allowed to pass through, into, or
          out of it, without a permit from the proper officer, yet it has
          been declared by our Governor, published abroad, and has been
          repeatedly acted upon, that all persons feeling dissatisfied,
          unwilling to remain in their present position, and wishing to go
          to our enemies, and place themselves under their protection, and
          accept of their proffers, shall forthwith be furnished with a
          passport and escort. If they wish to leave for other climates,
          and will pay their honest debts, and not steal their outfit, they
          can have the privilege. Two or three small parties have started
          this fall, embracing the few remains of our Gentile traders who
          remained in our midst for purposes of speculation; and I have
          heard that one or two small families who once counted themselves
          Saints went with them. The road is still open for others to
          follow who wish to do so.
          My own feelings, and I believe the feelings of all the
          authorities of this people, are, that we want no disaffected or
          indifferent ones to remain among us. We will not lay a straw in
          their way, if they will depart in peace, if they do not wish to
          remain with the people of God and share with them in their joys
          and sorrows.
          The principles of our holy religion claim from us the exercise of
          our own judgment, and inculcate the largest degree of freedom of
          soul, and will extend to every soul of man like privileges. The
          union which exists in the midst of this people, and of which our
          enemies have ever complained so much, has never been the result
          of coercion. It has not been created by iron bands placed around
          the outside of this people, only so far as the Lord has made use
          of the wicked to persecute and drive them together. That union
          has been the legitimate result of the principles of truth
          revealed unto us from heaven and adopted as the guide of their
          conduct by the people.
          Although many of those who have left this people and returned,
          like the dog to his vomit, and like the sow that was washed to
          her wallowing in the mire, and who have gone down again to the
          filth and degradation of Babylon, have reported that they
          narrowly escaped with their lives--that efforts had been made to
          prevent their departure; yet all this people do verily know that
          they were of their father the Devil, who was a liar from the
          beginning, and that their tales were base and wicked falsehoods,
          as an excuse for their own mean and traitorous course. The only
          tyranny and oppression that ever existed among this people (if,
          indeed, any virtuous person would call it so,) has been the
          sharpness of the word of God reproving the wickedness of the
          people, holding the vile and wicked from riding over and
          trampling under foot the weak and innocent, saying to the people,
          "If you wish to do wickedly--to oppress each other--to bite and
          devour each other,--if it is your nature to gouge out your
          neighbour's eyes, to purloin his property, seduce his wife and
          daughters,--in fine, if you wish to practice wickedness and
          abomination after the order of the Gentile world from which you
          have been gathered, retire from the midst of the Saints, return
          to the hole from whence you have been taken, and not attempt to
          carry on your wickedness in the midst of this people, who love
          righteousness and desire to put away all unholiness from them."
          This is the only oppression which any individual has been able to
          complain of, in truth and justice, in the midst of this
          "Mormonism" does not coerce, but all the time persuades, teaches,
          enlightens, instructs, and invites by the beauty, excellence, and
          virtue of those holy principles which God has revealed to us,
          gradually drawing the people together, cementing their feelings,
          and bringing them, by common consent, to act upon the principles
          of truth and righteousness.
          There is but one alternative for this people: it is our religion,
          our God, our liberty, or slavery, the Devil, and death. There is
          no drawing back. The wedge has been entered. Our God has led us
          forth and directed our course from the beginning to the present
          hour. "Shall I cause to come to the birth," saith the Lord, "and
          not bring forth?" No. Although the woman in travail and in pain
          to be delivered suffers anxiety, mingled with fear, yet soon her
          sorrow is forgotten, for joy that a man-child is born into the
          world. So it will be with this people, and our enemies cannot
          hinder it. The Devil and all the hosts of hell cannot prevent the
          consummation of the desired object that God has in view.
          The kingdom of God is established, no more to be thrown down; and
          in it we shall live and reign, and every righteous man and woman
          who love God and his truth more than their own lives and the
          treasures of this world shall be exalted in the kingdom of God:
          they shall see the triumph of truth and righteousness, and the
          kingdom of God shining on the earth as the sun in firmament. But
          the time will come when the fainthearted and the wicked, whose
          knees tremble and who cannot endure the contradiction of the
          ungodly world, and choose rather to hide their heads and retire,
          making lies their refuge, will lift up their eyes in hell, being
          in torment: they will look back, and they will try to repent as
          it were in sackcloth and ashes: they will seek repentance
          carefully with tears, but will not find it, because there will be
          no chance left for them to regain what they have lost. If the
          Lord has compassion upon them and hears their cries, their
          weeping, and their bitter lamentation in the day of their
          degradation and misery, it will be to give them the privilege of
          becoming, in a future day, the servants of those who maintained
          their integrity.
          The state of my lungs is such that I shall be under the necessity
          of closing. I pray to God to bless all Israel and help us to keep
          our covenants to the end. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Brigham
          Young, November 29, 1857
                          Brigham Young, November 29, 1857
                                       OF GOD.
               Discourse by President Brigham Young, delivered in the
                      Great Salt Lake City, November 29, 1857.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt
          I have the same diffidence in my feelings that most public
          speakers have, and am apt to think that others can speak better
          and more edifying that I can. There are but few public speakers
          but what feel more or less timidity. That is probably not so much
          a man-fearing spirit as it is a natural delicacy or timidity. All
          of you have doubtless to some extent realized the same feeling,
          either in large or small assemblies, and also in social
          conversation. People generally are more or less disturbed and
          thrown off their balance by the sound of their own voices,
          especially when speaking to an audience, even after being much
          used to addressing assemblies. Some of our most eloquent and
          interesting speakers would rather do almost anything than speak
          to the congregations that assemble here. That diffidence or
          timidity we must dispense with. When it becomes our duty to talk,
          we ought to be willing to talk. if we never exhibit the knowledge
          within us, the people will not know really whether we have any.
          Interchanging our ideas and exhibiting that which we believe and
          understand affords an opportunity for detecting and correcting
          errors and increasing our stock of valuable information. I have
          frequently thought that I should be very happy if I could hear
          the Elders of Israel speak their feelings and impart their
          knowledge pertaining to their fellow-beings, to earthly things,
          to heavenly things, to godliness, and God.
          I am sensible that people are not gifted and capacitated alike.
          There is not that depth of understanding and intensity of thought
          in some that there is in others, neither is there the same scope
          of perception. Some are quick to apprehend, while others are
          slow. Also while a speaker is communicating his opinions, views,
          and feelings, a portion of so large a congregation as this will
          perhaps be giving the most strict attention, while the minds of
          the other portion are wandering at the moment he may be advancing
          rich ideas, clothed in language choice and eloquent. That
          inattention by some leads to a difference of understanding among
          the people, through a misapprehension of the speaker's meaning.
          True, some persons may use language that a portion of the
          congregation are unacquainted with; consequently, they could not
          be expected to readily apprehend the idea designed to be
          communicated, though that is by no means a common incident in
          teachings from this stand.
          If a congregation wish to be instructed so as to understand alike
          and alike receive an increase of wisdom and knowledge, their
          minds must be intent on the subject before them. They must not
          suffer their thoughts to be roaming over the earth; they must not
          permit their minds to be scanning and traversing their every-day
          duties and avocations. If they do, they are not blessed with that
          store of knowledge they otherwise might obtain through paying
          that attention necessary to enable them to clearly understand. I
          acknowledge that it is a masterwork to school our minds so as at
          all times to exercise complete power over them. If the people
          would so educate themselves as to control their thinking powers,
          they would derive a great advantage from it. They could improve
          much faster than they now do.
          Many years ago, the Prophet Joseph observed that if the people
          would have received the revelations he had in his possession, and
          wisely acted upon them, as the Lord would dictate, they might, in
          their power to do and understand, have been many years ahead of
          what they then were. Experience has taught us that is requires
          time to acquire certain branches of mechanism, also all
          principles and ideas that we wish to become masters of. The
          closer people apply their minds to any correct purpose the faster
          they can grow and increase in the knowledge of the truth. When
          they learn to master their feelings they can soon learn to master
          their reflections and thoughts in the degree requisite for
          attaining the objects they are seeking. But while they yield to a
          feeling or spirit that distracts their minds from a subject they
          wish to study and learn, so long they will never gain the mastery
          of their minds. So it is with persons who yield to temptation and
          There are individuals who yield to that unruly member, the
          tongue; and after yielding once, they have not the same strength
          to resist as at first. They become more and more weakened every
          time they yield to temptation, until they are unable to control
          themselves, when they are tempted either to speak unadvisedly or
          to run into any species of wickedness. So every faculty bestowed
          upon man is subject to contamination--subject to be diverted from
          the purpose the Creator designed it to fill. If a man permits
          himself to make use of language calculated to wound his spirit
          and infringe upon his better judgment, and does not try to resist
          that practice, when he is again tempted upon the point he is more
          likely to give way and to have less compunction of conscience
          than before. If he continues day after day to yield himself a
          servant to the uncontrolled whims of his own nature and the evil
          influences that may be exercised upon him from without, in a few
          years he will be so steeped in sin as to be entirely given over
          to the error of his ways. The sooner an individual resists
          temptation to do, say, or think wrong, while he has light to
          correct his judgment, the quicker he will gain strength and power
          to overcome every temptation to evil.
          Let the people study to bring their thinking or reflecting
          faculties into subjection. We are preaching principles that
          belong to this subject every day of our lives. Last Sabbath I
          spoke upon the concentration of faith, of action, of feeling, of
          reflection. That is a matter I often reflect upon, because I am
          called into circumstances that bring it before me every time I
          hear a man pray. Am I as yet so master of my thoughts and
          reflections that no thought or desire of my heart is trying to
          forestall the speaker in uttering his sentiments and wishes? Have
          I the power to hold my mind directly upon his words and desires,
          asking continually that he may be directed by the Holy Ghost? I
          acknowledge that I am not yet perfect in this point. I have not
          yet that power over myself; but, to the praise of the name of the
          God I serve, I do actually gain upon it. When my mind has
          betrayed me, and I detect a desire different from that which is
          uttered by my speaker, I feel to retract and offer my desire to
          the throne of grace that I may have power to hold my faith with
          the man that is appointed to pray. Those who think and reflect
          upon this matter can realize that I wish of myself and what I
          wish of the people. Unthinking persons may not fully realize the
          importance of these remarks; but every person who has a realizing
          sense of the duties devolving upon him--of the way of life and
          salvation--of what we are called to in the holy Gospel, must be
          aware of the importance of this subject to all who are determined
          to live their religion.
          You are all acquainted, or profess to be, with the Gospel of
          salvation. You have entered into covenant with God--have received
          the ordinances of the Gospel; and if you have not received the
          Holy Ghost, you should have received it. You have the history of
          the administration of the Holy Ghost as given by the Apostles in
          the days of Jesus, and it is referred to in all sacred writings.
          This people profess to be more or less acquainted with the
          principles developed by the administration of the Holy Ghost. We
          will admit that you understand it. Now, ask yourselves whether
          you believe that the Holy Ghost ever commenced to produce a work
          or an effect before it was in the heart and mind of that Being we
          call our heavenly Father. Do you think that the Holy Ghost ever
          thought of dictating that Being we call our God? This whole
          people have learned enough upon this subject to answer at once,
          that we do not believe that the Holy Ghost ever dictated,
          suggested, moved, or pretended to offer a plan, except that which
          the Eternal Father dictated.
          With regard to this particular point, I will say that you shall
          judge the matter and be my witnesses. Have we not learned enough
          with regard to the character of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost,
          to at once believe, admit, and affirm that the Holy Ghost always
          has and always will operate precisely according to the suggestion
          of the Father? Not a desire, act, wish, or thought does the Holy
          Ghost indulge in contrary to that which is dictated by the
          Father. We all sense this in a degree, because it has always been
          taught to us. It is taught in the Bible, in the revelations given
          through Joseph, and in the preaching by the Elders of Israel. It
          is our tradition, education, and experience in the kingdom of
          God. The Holy Ghost, we believe, is one of the characters that
          form the Trinity, or the Godhead. Not one person in three, nor
          three persons in one; but the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost are one
          in essence, as the hearts of three men who are united in all
          things. He is one of the three characters we believe in, whose
          office it is to administer to those of the human family who love
          the truth. I have stated that they are one, as the hearts of
          three men might be one. Lest you should mistake me, I will say
          that I do not wish you to understand that the Holy Ghost is a
          personage having a tabernacle, like the Father and the Son; but
          he is God's messenger that diffuses his influence through all the
          works of the Almighty.
          We believe that we have a correct idea of the character of the
          Son from the writings of the Apostles, so far as they learned it.
          But while he was tabernacling in the flesh, he was more or less
          contaminated with fallen nature. While he was here, in a body
          that his mother Mary bore him, he was more or less connected with
          and influenced by this nature that we have received. According to
          the flesh, he was of the seed of Adam and Eve, and suffered the
          weaknesses and temptations of his fellow-mortals. He was hungry
          and thirsty, weary and faint, and had to eat, drink, and sleep.
          In him were developed all the traits pertaining to mortal man.
          According to the scanty history that we have of the Saviour, as
          near nothing at all as well can be from the time of his birth to
          the time of his entering on his ministry at the age of thirty
          years, he administered his Gospel for about three years and a
          half among the people, and raised up his Church, ordained his
          Apostles, and established his kingdom; and of that limited time
          we have but a scanty history. According to that
          history--according to all you have learned, and to all the Holy
          Ghost has ever borne testimony of to you concerning him, let me
          ask you the same question in regard to him as I did concerning
          the Holy Ghost; and what would you say? That he did nothing of
          himself. he wrought miracles and performed a good work on the
          earth; but of himself he did nothing. He said, "As I have seen my
          Father do, so do I." "I came not to do my will, but the will of
          Him that sent me." We must come to the conclusion that the Son of
          God did not suggest, dictate, act, or produce any manifestation
          of his power, of his glory, or of his errand upon the earth, only
          as it came from the mind and will of his Father. Do you not all
          firmly believe that the whole soul, heart, reflections, thoughts,
          and all the being of the Son of God were operated upon and did
          show forth that all he did manifest and bring forth pertaining to
          his mission was according to the word and will of his Father?
          Certainly you do.
          Jesus offered up one of the most essential prayers that could
          possibly be offered up by a human or heavenly being--no matter
          who, pertaining to the salvation of the people, and embodying a
          principle without which none can be saved, when he prayed the
          father to make his disciples one, as he and his Father were one.
          He knew that if they did not become one, they could not be saved
          in the celestial kingdom of God. If persons do not see as he did
          while in the flesh, hear as he heard, understand as he
          understood, and become precisely as he was, according to their
          several capacities and callings, they can never dwell with him
          and his Father. That same principle stands out as the most
          prominent item of teaching in all the teachings and revelations
          that have ever been given from heaven to men on the earth. That
          thread of faith, of feeling, of hope, of joy, and of action may
          be found through all the instructions that have ever come from
          heaven to earth, in order to bring the children of God--that is,
          the whole of the human family--the children of our Father, and we
          as brethren and sisters, parents and children, all emanating from
          one parentage, back again into the presence of the Father and the
          Son, to bring up the whole posterity of father Adam and mother
          Eve to enjoy the light, glory, intelligence, power, kingdoms,
          thrones, and dominions that are prepared for exalted beings,
          which could not be exalted unless they were prepared for an
          exaltation; and upon no other principle could they be prepared,
          without taking tabernacles of flesh and being made subject to
          vanity. The whole of the Divine teachings, from the days of Adam
          until now, have been to teach the human family to yield to the
          teachings, dictations, influence, and power of the holy Gospel to
          make them one. Without that oneness, there is no salvation for us
          in the celestial kingdom of God.
          Were we to particularize in regard to different organizations of
          the human family, we would learn that some are not capable of the
          same exaltation as are others, arising from the difference in the
          conduct and capacities of people. There is also a difference in
          the spirit world. It is the design, the wish, the will, and mind
          of the Lord that the inhabitants of the earth should be exalted
          to thrones, kingdoms, principalities, and powers, according to
          their capacities. In their exaltation, one may be capable of
          presiding over ten cities, while another may not be capable of
          presiding over more than five, another over only two, and another
          over but one. They must all first be subjected to sin and to the
          calamities of mortal flesh, in order to prove themselves worthy;
          then the Gospel is ready to take hold of them and bring them up,
          unite them, enlighten their understandings, and make them one in
          the Lord Jesus, that their faith, prayers, hopes, affections, and
          all their desires may ever be concentrated in one. That is the
          design and the wish of the Father.
          You may ask, "Did he foreknow that they would be saved?" I have
          seen many in the world that never have been able to discern the
          difference between foreknowledge and foreordination. I thought
          that I could always discern the difference. If I know that an act
          will transpire tomorrow, it by not means follows that I had
          decreed it. It is the design, wish, desire of our Heavenly Father
          that every soul in this congregation should be crowned in the
          celestial kingdom. Will they be? No. I know that some will not.
          But does it follow that some are ordained to go to hell? No. It
          is the design of the Gospel to save this congregation, all the
          Latter-day Saints, and all the world besides that well believe
          the testimony of Jesus and become obedient to the Gospel of
          salvation. And none need to turn round and say, "If it is the
          design of the Lord, I shall be saved;" for its being the will and
          design of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, and of every Saint
          that ever was or ever will be, that you should be a Saint, will
          not make you one, contrary to your own choice. All rational
          beings have an agency of their own; and according to their own
          choice they will be saved or damned.
          Inasmuch as the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost are one, the desire
          of the Saviour, as manifested in his sayings and teachings, is,
          that his people should also be one, even as he and his Father are
          one. If we had the heart, feeling, and faith within us that Jesus
          had while here in the flesh, should we be scattering in our
          faith?--should we be divided in our interests? No: we should
          become one. I have not time to tell you why this people are not
          identically one; but to the discerning mind the Holy Spirit will
          manifest the reason in a moment--will lay it before you like an
          open vision, and you will at once be able to discern thousands of
          reasons for it. Are they capable of being one? Yes, if they will
          in all things bring their wills into subjection to the will of
          the Father.
          If any are in the habit of taking the name of God in vain, cease
          doing so to-day, to-morrow, and throughout the coming week, and
          so continue, and you will soon gain strength to entirely overcome
          the habit; you will gain power over your words. Some are in the
          habit of talking about their neighbours, of vending stories they
          know nothing about, only that Aunt Sally said that Cousin Fanny
          told Aunt Betsy that old Aunt Ruth said something or other, or
          somebody had had a dream; and by the time the story or dream
          reaches you, it has assumed the semblance of a fact, and you are
          very foolishly spending your time in talking about things that
          amount to nothing, or that you have no concern with. A report is
          started that such a one has done wrong, and by the time it has
          gone its round, has become anointed with the salve of the
          backbiter and talebearer--become endowed with their spirit. One
          and another falls in with it and says, "That is true--your cause
          is just, you are exactly right, and the other is surely wrong,"
          when they know nothing about the matter, thereby engendering
          entirely groundless ill feelings against each other. Before we
          condemn, we should wait until the Heavens clearly indicate a
          fault in a father, brother, sister, wife, husband, or neighbour.
          And if Heaven declares a fault, wait until the Holy Ghost
          manifests to you that such is a fault. Let the Father reveal to
          you that the person you are thinking or talking about is actually
          wrong. Traduce no person. When you know what right is, and are
          capable of correcting a person that is wrong, then it is time
          enough for you to judge.
          I have but recently told you that some people think they are
          capable of judging everybody but themselves. Let us judge
          ourselves. And if any are disposed to let that unruly member, the
          tongue, do that which will wound the heart, darken the spirit,
          and bring us into subjection to an evil practice, resist such a
          disposition--throw it from you. If you will do that, you will
          find that the wicked will forsake their wickedness, and those who
          are inclined to think evil will cease doing so, and those who are
          inclined to utter evil words about their neighbours will cease
          that habit, and it will not be long before the people have
          perfect control over themselves. If you first gain power to check
          your words, you will then begin to have power to check your
          judgment, and at length actually gain power to check your
          thoughts and reflections.
          By close application and study with regard to ourselves and the
          requirements of Heaven upon us, we shall be able to school
          ourselves, until, when we call upon an elder to open our
          meetings, there will not be a desire, word sentence, feeling, or
          impulse of spirit one hair's breadth in advance of the one
          selected to be mouth. Do you believe that we can do that? We can.
          I have already told you that I am yet imperfect in that point;
          but I am trying to make myself perfect in that particular, so as
          to become fully master of my thoughts.
          I will now ask a question. Do you think that a man can pray
          wrong, when the hearts of perhaps over two thousand persons are
          ascending to God, in the name of Jesus Christ, to dictate the man
          who is praying, and desiring the Lord to let them know his will,
          and they will strive to do it? Could a man pray here for things
          he ought not, when the faith of two thousand is concentrated in
          the sincere desire that God will dictate in all things pertaining
          to his kingdom? He cannot ask amiss, for the faith of this people
          is concentrated through him to the throne of grace. That is a
          true principle--as true as the heavens.
          Our faith is concentrated in the Son of God, and through him to
          the Father; and the Holy Ghost is their minister to bring truths
          to us, and teach, guide, and direct the course of every mind,
          until we become perfected and prepared to go home, where we can
          see and converse with our Father in heaven. That is what we want
          to attain--that we can all the time have the word of the Lord of
          You have often heard me and my brethren say that if the people in
          the capacity of a Ward, for instance, would let their faith be
          perfectly united, and their whole desires rise to the Father,
          through the name of Jesus Christ, and hold their Bishop in his
          calling between God and them, it would hardly be possible for
          that Bishop to do wrong, for he would be filled with wisdom. Some
          of the brethren, in conversation, this morning, were likening the
          ministrations of the Holy Ghost to the mode of distributing gas
          throughout a city. The gas is led through a main pipe from the
          gasometer or reservoir, and thence through side-pipes and lesser
          and lesser branches, until it is so distributed as to furnish
          light to all who require it. I will liken the Bishops to some of
          those side-pipes laid down to conduct the gas. Take a joint of
          one of those pipes up, which in the comparison we will call a
          Bishop, and how are the inhabitants of that Ward to receive the
          light? Place him on one side--despise his counsels, and how are
          you to be taught? Will you teach each other? You are not called
          to do it in that capacity. Your Bishop is laid down by the master
          workman as the conductor of the Holy Ghost to you. If you put
          that conductor out of its place, the connection is broken between
          you and the fountain of light. If you see a Bishop and his Ward
          in contention and confusion, you may understand that the pipe or
          conductor which conveys the light of that people is out of its
          place. Instead of the Bishop's being wrong, and the people right,
          or the people wrong, and the Bishop right, they are all wrong:
          there is little or no right there.
          Take any man in this kingdom, and if the people say that they
          will make him a President or a Bishop, or elect him to fill any
          other office, and the faith of the people is concentrated to
          receive light through that officer or pipe laid by the power of
          the Priesthood from the throne of God, you might as well try to
          move the heavens as to receive anything wrong through that
          conductor. No matter whom you elect for an officer, if your faith
          is concentrated in him through whom to receive the things which
          he is appointed to administer in, light will come to you. Let a
          presiding officer or a Bishop turn away from righteousness, and
          the Lord Almighty would give him the lock-jaw, if he could not
          stop his mouth in any other way, or send a fit of numb palsy on
          him, so that he could not act, as sure as the people over whom he
          presided were right, that they might not be led astray.
          If we wish to be taught, to receive, and understand, we must
          train ourselves. We are looking forward to the period when we
          shall be in the presence of the Father and the Son--when we shall
          realize that we are indeed the sons of God, and be crowned with
          glory, immortality, and eternal lives. "Then," you say, "we shall
          be perfect." You will be no more perfect in your sphere, when you
          are exalted to thrones, principalities, and powers, than you are
          required to be and are capable of being in your sphere to-day.
          The man that may be called a perfect man is perfect in every
          calling and sphere, as the Father, the Son, and Holy Ghost are in
          theirs, and as the angels are in theirs, which makes a perfect
          order from first to last--from beginning to end.
          In this probation, we have evil to contend with, and we must
          overcome it in ourselves, or we never shall overcome it anywhere
          else. Were you to let your minds stretch out, you would learn
          that the whole kingdom, with its principles, powers, authority,
          glory, and everything pertaining to it, is combined in the
          organization of man ready to be developed. We must commence and
          school ourselves, and so bring our reflections into subjection,
          that we can make our minds one in faith. Then, let me ask you,
          when you pray God to so hedge up the way of our enemies that they
          never shall be able to come to this Territory, will not your
          prayers be very likely to be answered? If the faith of this
          people, called Latter-day Saints, had been united in one, as it
          should have been four months ago, when they asked the Father, in
          the name of Jesus, to stop our enemies on the other side of the
          South Pass, I can assure you, as the Lord God lives, they never
          could have seen this side of it. But they are in the Territory.
          When we are united and ask God to let the wicked slay the wicked
          as they ripen in iniquity, it will be done, and they will not
          have power to overcome this handful of people in the mountains.
          He will place between them and us a barrier which they cannot
          surmount. He will build a wall between us such as they have never
          thought of, and they will fall upon each other and slay each
          I know where the difficulties are, but I have not time now to
          explain them. If we are one and are concentrated in the Father,
          through the Lord Jesus Christ, and through the chain and thread
          drawn out for us to follow up, we will find the fountain head;
          and then, if I should ask this people to pray for a certain
          thing, they would pray for it. But do they now? No: they pray for
          everything else. I have made that request until I am tired for
          making it. Many will pray for this, that, and the other,
          different from what I had advised them only twenty minutes
          before. Their faith is not concentrated, as I have frequently
          told you, though they are improving and will come to a knowledge
          of the truth.
          The First Presidency have of right a great influence over this
          people; and if we should get out of the way and lead this people
          to destruction, what a pity it would be! How can you know whether
          we lead you correctly or not? Can you know by any other power
          than that of the Holy Ghost? If have uniformly exhorted the
          people to obtain this living witness each for themselves; then no
          man on earth can lead them astray. It is my calling and office to
          dictate in the affairs of the Church and kingdom of God on earth.
          That is what you have chosen me to do for many years, with
          brother Heber and others for my Counsellors, two of whom have
          passed behind the vail; and I now have a third--brother Daniel H.
          Wells, who is as good a man as ever lived. You have asked me to
          tell the people what to do to be saved--to be the mouth of God to
          this people. Does your faith agree with your profession? Let me
          continue to exhort you, until you can train your hearts, your
          feelings, and your affections to such a degree, that when I ask
          you to pray for a certain object, you can think of it when you go
          Brethren and sisters, may God bless you! I bless you all the
          time. Hallelujah! Praise the name of Israel's God; for my soul
          exults in his name. We are happy and free from the yoke of
          bondage. The breath of the Almighty can scatter our enemies to
          the four winds and blow them into oblivion, if we have the faith.
          You can read how the kings, prophets, and mighty men in Israel
          used to slay their fellow-beings--required so to do, because of
          the wickedness of those very men who stood at the head of Israel.
          If they had been sanctified and holy, the children of Israel
          would not have travelled one year with Moses before they would
          have received their endowments and the Melchizedek Priesthood.
          But they could not receive them, and never did. Moses left them,
          and they did not receive the fulness of that Priesthood. After
          they came to the land of Canaan, they never would have desired a
          king, had they been holy. The Lord told Moses that he would show
          himself to the people; but they begged Moses to plead with the
          Lord not to do so. Moses was angry at the sins of the people and
          did wrong, insomuch that when the Lord showed himself to him, he
          hid him in a cleft in a rock, and only let him see his hinder
          Through the conduct of the people, Moses sometimes felt like
          fighting. After he had been with the Lord forty days in the
          mountain, he came down and saw the idolatry of the people, and
          smashed to pieces the tables that were written by the finger of
          God, and ground up the golden image they were worshipping, and
          scattered it to the four winds; and the Lord slew many of the
          I want to see this people so full of the power of God that they
          can ask and receive. God help us so to do! Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Heber
          C. Kimball, November 29, 1857
                         Heber C. Kimball, November 29, 1857
                          PROVIDE FOR THEIR OWN WANTS, ETC.
           Remarks by President Heber C. Kimball, made in the Tabernacle,
              Great Salt Lake City, Sunday Evening, November 29, 1857.
                               Reported by J. V. Long.
          What we have heard from our President is most heavenly, and it is
          truth. We many times say it is "God's truth." I want to know if
          there ever was any truth that was not his? Now, just reflect and
          see if ever there was a truth that we received or heard, or if
          there ever will be, except what is God's truth. No--there never
          was; for truth proceedeth from him.
          Those ideas are according to my feelings--by desires, and they
          are according to the Spirit that has been given unto me. I have
          sought in my simplicity to produce the most simple things that I
          possibly could, to show this people the propriety of becoming
          one. You know I have brought up the apple tree, the peach tree,
          the grape and all variety of vines, the cucumber, the
          water-melon, and every other simple thing, to show unto this
          people that we have to become like those vines and those various
          bodies which I have mentioned,--like unto the apple tree, for
          instance, which is a corporate and independent body, just as you
          and I are independent, inasmuch as we act in concert with the
          truth and with the personage the produce us.
          Did God produce us. He did, and every son and daughter of Adam
          upon the face of this earth; and he produced us upon the same
          principle that we produce one another. And so it is with the
          fruit of creation.
          The ideas advanced by brother Brigham about the manufacture and
          conducting of gas afford a good illustration of the operations of
          the Holy Ghost through the Priesthood. The place where the gas is
          manufactured may be called the fountain head; then by a power at
          head-quarters, it is carried by pipes and propelled through every
          avenue, even to the extremity of the city.
          When that gas is conveyed to a city, it gives light. It is so
          also with the Holy Spirit. There is sufficient of it to be
          conveyed to every man and woman according to their necessity; for
          Jesus says that every son and daughter that cometh into the world
          receiveth of his light, and it proceeds from head-quarters.
          I have spoken upon these things before, not using this figure in
          particular, but upon the same principle.
          A Bishop has power to dictate and control his Ward, even as he is
          dictated by those over him. When a family or that portion of the
          city who receive their light from him, reject that pipe, or that
          authority, they reject the authority, or the pipe, that conveys
          the light to them. It is so with the Seventies and also with
          every Quorum in this Church.
          There are seven Presidents of the Seventies; then there is one
          man that presides over the six. Are the six to be subject to the
          first of their number? They are; for he is the head of that limb;
          and if the six reject that man, they reject the authority or the
          pipe that conveys light to them.
          If the Quorums of the Seventies reject their limbs or Presidents,
          who are, even to the seventieth Seventy, connected to the main
          limb of the Seventies, they also shut off the light which would
          flow to them. Whom are the Seventies amenable to? They are
          amenable to the men that preside over them; and it is so with
          ever department of the Priesthood, from the authority of the
          Apostleship down to that of the Teacher.
          "What a strange doctrine," says one, "that we should be taught to
          be one!" I tell you there is no way for us to prosper and prevail
          in the last day only to learn to act in union. As to the holy
          Priesthood and the government of this Church, I can say that we
          shall, as a people, prevail in the name and by the authority of
          Jesus. If we will take this course and be one, we shall rule the
          house of Israel, and everything on the earth will be subject to
          us. This is the doctrine that has been taught us all the time.
          I will acknowledge that I am sometimes eccentric. There is no man
          who has not, at some periods, eccentric feelings. These feelings
          correspond with the feelings of this people; and I believe and
          know that they control me in my speaking, or else I should not
          say a great many things that I do. I have heard brother Brigham
          say a great many time, "Why, I have spoken thus and so, and I
          believe that the people feel as I have spoken."
          To be eccentric in speaking means to occasionally depart from the
          point of argument--to run off to the east and then come back--to
          run off to the north, to the south, to the west, and return again
          to the centre. This feeling is in every man at times, and the
          Elders who speak from this stand have to speak so as to answer
          the queries and dispositions of the people, otherwise they would
          talk right in a bee-line.
          Am I afraid that we shall be overcome? No, I am not. I never
          have, to my knowledge, had a feeling in my heart, from the day
          that I came into this Church unto the present time, that this
          kingdom would be overcome; neither have I now. But there are
          people here; and a people will grow out of this people that will
          stand forever.
          I never was more joyful in my life than I am now. I thanked my
          Father this morning, I thanked him last night, and I thank him
          every day of my life that the time has come when he has said to
          his servant the Prophet, "Shut down the gate, and never--no,
          never admit those men here who would take your life and the lives
          of the brethren, and seek to lead my people to destruction." Am I
          not glad at this? I am; and that man or that woman who is not
          glad is not blest--is not a Saint. Those who do not rejoice at
          this time are not living their religion.
          [President B. Young: "They are all glad."]
          Some say there is no tea in the stores, and that is verily true.
          There is no coffee, factory, calico, satins, silks, thread,
          needles, bonnets, nor any luxuries; and I am glad of it.
          Have we needle-makers? Yes; we have men here who can make the
          finest needles as well as the largest and the best, and every
          kind of cutlery, and every kind of satin, just as good as there
          is in the world.
          Can we make linen? Yes. Why can we not make linen just as well as
          they can in England? I have seen some of the sisters now before
          me in the old countries, throwing the shuttle, weaving cotton,
          linen, silks, satins, ginghams, woollen plaids, &c., &c. You can
          do it here as well as you could there.
          Can we make sugar here? Yes, just as good as ever was made in the
          Southern States. Can we raise hemp? Yes--just as good as ever
          Brother W. C. Staines raised some Chinese sugar-cane on brother
          Brigham's lot down here. There was about one of those Chicago
          waggon boxes full of stalks: I suppose one of them will hold 25
          or 30 bushels. He sent that down to brother Hugh Moon's, and he
          made 14 gallons of as good molasses as ever came from any portion
          of the world. Brother Brigham did not expect that is would make
          over three or four gallons.
          If we can make molasses, by boiling it a little more, we can make
          good Muscovado sugar. I have got beet molasses by me now of last
          year's make, and at the bottom of the keg it is good grained
          It is like unto making maple sugar. I know how to make it; I know
          how to boil it, make it into molasses, and into sugar; and these
          men who are sitting on the stand, and who have lived in the
          United States, all know how to make maple sugar. The boiling and
          cleansing is all the art there is in it. The sooner we go to work
          to produce these things the better, for we have got to go without
          tea, coffee, and tobacco until we raise them. I see no chance
          only for us to go to work as we have been instructed.
          Years ago, in the days of Joseph, the Lord gave a revelation
          instructing this people to produce what they wanted for their own
          use by their own labour; and you have been taught it from that
          day to the present time, and the Lord has brought us into these
          mountains to bring to pass these very things, that we may become
          a free and independent people. To produce these things ourselves
          is necessary for our temporal and spiritual salvation.
          You say you are going to work to cache up your grain, and so am
          I. I am going to work to raise a better crop next year than I
          have this, and I am going to work to make boxes to put it in;
          then I will dig holes and cache them, and the next year after
          that I will do likewise. And how long will it be before we shall
          have seven years' provisions in hand, if you all do likewise?
          A great many do not know the meaning of the word cache. Well,
          Cache Valley up here--almost the first company that passed
          through there, afraid of being overtaken by the wintry storms,
          cached some of their articles, and the mountaineers cached their
          furs; and from these circumstances, Cache Valley took its name;
          for they dug holes and buried their substance, and this is
          I am going to begin to collect all the wheat I can, flour it, and
          put it in good, dry boxes; and if it is well pressed down, I
          think it will keep longer than wheat: besides, the mice will not
          then be able to make such ravages upon it.
               When we have done all this, shall we put it in the ground?
          No. Put it in your granaries, and have it ready for caching. We
          shall not cache our substance until it is considered necessary.
          It is the duty of the Bishops to plan for the people in their
          Wards. Let every Bishop take a course to design for his people.
          This is the way for them to do, and this is their calling; and in
          so doing they will be blest, and this whole people will be
          sustained, and God will bless us and will hold our enemies; yes,
          he will hold them a great deal easier and far more secure than
          you can hold a horse with the Spanish bits. He is not going to
          let this people be overcome, if we do as we are told from time to
          time. Let us do as we have been told there to-day--lay aside our
          foolishness, our vanity, and bad habits, and I just know that all
          will be well.
          Suppose I yield to the practice of drinking liquor, one draught
          gives me a greater thirst for another; my appetite increases as I
          nourish it, till by-and-by, I will want it regularly, and I am
          finally overcome. Let a man do an evil to-day, and the temptation
          will be stronger for him to do it to-morrow.
          Brethren, let us take a course to keep the commandments of God,
          and do just as we are told from this time henceforth, and never
          cease our operations in everything that is good. Never let us
          cease our mechanical operations, and let us be diligent in
          cultivating the earth and accumulating everything we can think of
          that will be useful. If you will take this course, you will not
          be obliged to put for the mountains next year, nor the year
          after, and so on, if we will do exactly right.
          I would prefer to go into the mountains, and see my family go
          there, and live on roots, wearing sheep-skins, and goat-skins,
          and dwelling in tents and caves, as the ancient Apostles did,
          rather than to see the troops of the United States come into this
          Valley, and to suffer and see the sufferings of this people, as
          we have hitherto. [The congregation responded, Amen.] I have seen
          myself, with many of this people, broken up and driven five
          times, and robbed and plundered; and they have suffered in such a
          manner as I never want to see them suffer again.
          I calculate, by the help of God, to do as I am told, to make
          preparations for peace and for war, for plenty, for hard times,
          and for every emergency,--to arm myself and my sons with the
          armour of peace and righteousness, and then with the armour of
          death, and to carry the means of self-defence in one hand, and
          cultivate the earth with the other, and having the righteousness
          of Christ in my heart, and execute righteousness with the sword
          of the Spirit, temporally and spiritually.
          Now, here is peace, here is prosperity, here is happiness, here
          is life, here is repentance, and baptism for the remission of
          sins, and the way to obtain eternal lives. Accept of it, if you
          please; and if you will not, you will suffer the consequences. I
          intend to take the right course, and to help to arm my boys and
          my brethren, and to do the best that I can for the welfare of the
          house of Israel.
          You probably recollect what Jesus said to his disciples when
          Peter took up the sword and cut off the fellow's ear: he designed
          to cut off his head, but missed it. Jesus said, "Those that take
          up the sword shall perish by the sword. If my kingdom was of this
          world, then my servants would fight." Let me tell you, the
          kingdom that we are in is of this world and also of the world to
          come, and will stand for ever; and we will fight, if our enemies
          come upon us to slay us,--not only the men, but the women and the
               Well, let us think of these things, and not get angry. I
          know that I am a stronger man when the Spirit of God is resting
          upon me than I am at ordinary times; and I know, when I get
          angry, that it makes me weak--it takes away my strength.
          This is the way you feel; for that Spirit makes you mighty and
          powerful, and fear leaves you. Fear has torment, and torment
          makes a person weak, and vexes him, and perplexes him, because it
          is the principle of death.
          Keep the Spirit of the Lord and learn to govern your tempers,
          just as a smith when he goes to work to make a knife or any other
          kind of edged tool. When he takes it from the fire, he almost
          always makes it harder than he wants it; and then he has to take
          the temper down again, until he gets it so that the edge will
          bend. It is better to bend than to break.
          Let us make our passions bend, and become one with our head as
          every limb and branch pertaining to a tree becomes one with its
          head, and with the roots from which it springs. God bless you
          all! Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / John
          Taylor, December 6, 1857
                            John Taylor, December 6, 1857
           A Discourse by Elder John Taylor, delivered in the Tabernacle,
                       Great Salt Lake City, December 6, 1857.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          Having been called upon this morning to address you for a short
          time, I arise with very great pleasure to do so; for I always
          love to meet with the Saints, to gaze upon them, and to
          contribute my mite in offering instructions to them, so far as
          the Spirit of the Lord shall give me utterance. I conceive that,
          without the aid of his Holy Spirit, we as saints can do very
          poorly either as speakers or as hearers. For, unless the Spirit
          of the Lord directs and guides us, we are all of us in a very
          poor position indeed. In fact, it is very difficult for any of us
          to understand really and positively what would be for our best
          good without its aid. In the world they know comparatively
          nothing about this. They call evil good, and good evil. They call
          darkness light, and light they call darkness.
          Mixed up as we have been with the Gentile world, and having
          formed our habits and customs among them--having been accustomed
          to feel as they feel, to reason as they reason, and to associate
          with them, it is sometimes very difficult for us to understand
          what would really be for our benefit and advantage, whether
          pertaining to this world or to the world which is to come.
          I presume as we obtain more of the Spirit of God--as we receive
          faith and intelligence that flow from him and the revelations
          that he imparts and will continue to impart to those who are
          faithful, we shall begin to understand things in a very different
          light from what many of us at the present time understand them.
          Even in temporal things there is a great difference among men in
          regard to their judgment, capacities, reasoning powers, and their
          comprehension of justice, equity, the rights of man, the duties
          that we owe to each other, and the various responsibilities that
          devolve upon us. But when we come to contemplate the things of
          God, the end of our existence, our origin, the position that we
          occupy in relation to our families, to each other, and to the
          Church and kingdom of God, it is very difficult sometimes for us
          to understand things correctly in relation to the position of the
          world, to the things that have been, to the things that are, and
          to the things that are to come,--to the purposes of God in
          relation to the human family, and how these purposes will be best
          advanced. We shall find, in reflecting upon all these matters,
          that there is a very great difference between the reasoning of
          the human family upon these matters and the plan that God would
          adopt for the accomplishment of his purposes and for the bringing
          to pass the things that have been spoken of by the holy Prophets
          since the world began.
          There is not a position that we can occupy in life, either as
          fathers, mothers, children, masters, servants, or as Elders of
          Israel holding the holy Priesthood in all its ramifications, but
          what we need continually wisdom flowing from the Lord and
          intelligence communicated by him, that we may know how to perform
          correctly the various duties and avocations of life, and to
          fulfil the various responsibilities that rest upon us. And hence
          the necessity all the day long, and every day and every week,
          month, and year, and under all circumstances, of men leaning upon
          the Lord and being guided by that Spirit that flows from him.
          That we may not fall into error--that we may neither do anything
          wrong, say anything wrong, nor think anything wrong, and all the
          time retain that Spirit, which can only be kept by observing
          purity, holiness, and virtue, and living continually in obedience
          to the laws and commandments of God.
          There was a people to whom one of the ancient Apostles said, "But
          ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things and
          need not that any man should teach you, because of the anointing
          that dwelleth in you, which it truth, and no lie."
          When men obey the Gospel with pure hearts--when they are baptized
          in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and have
          hands laid upon them for the gift of the Holy Ghost, and they
          receive that Spirit and live in obedience to the dictates of that
          Spirit, it will bring things past and present to their
          remembrance, lead them into all truth, and show them things to
          come. This is part and parcel of our belief.
          What is the reason we do not always comprehend things right?
          Because, in many instances, we give way to temptation. We let our
          old prepossessions, feelings, and influences, by which we have
          been governed heretofore, predominate over the Spirit of God, and
          we fall into error and darkness; and "If the light that is within
          us becomes darkness, how great is that darkness!" It is not
          enough, then, that we are baptised and have hands laid upon us
          for the gift of the Holy Ghost. It is not enough even that we go
          further than this, and receive our washing and our anointings,
          but that we daily and hourly and all the time live up to our
          religion, cultivate the Spirit of God, and have it continually
          within us "as a well of water springing up unto everlasting
          life," unfolding, developing, making manifest the purposes and
          designs of God unto us, that we may be enabled to walk worthy of
          the high avocation whereunto we are called, as sons and daughters
          of God to whom he has committed the principles of eternal truth
          and the oracles of God in these last days. It would be found very
          difficult for any individual left to himself to do right, to
          think right, to speak right, and to fulfil the will and law of
          God upon the earth; and hence the necessity of the organization
          of the Church and kingdom of God upon the earth, of the
          properly-organized Priesthood, of the legitimate channel, check,
          bounds, laws, and governments that the Almighty has introduced
          into his Church and kingdom for the guidance, instruction,
          protection, welfare, upbuilding, and further progress of his
          Church and kingdom upon the earth. As in school it required a man
          more competent to be a teacher than those who are taught, so in
          the Church of God; and hence the various grades and positions of
          the Priesthood. When a President, Bishop, or those having
          authority live up to their religion and cleave unto God, it is
          expected by us at all times that they will comprehend things
          under their immediate jurisdiction--things that they control,
          know the wants of the people and the best course for them to
          pursue, better than the individuals they teach; and this extends
          throughout all the various ramifications of the Church of God,
          from the first Presidency down. And indeed, between the first
          Presidency and the Lord of Hosts there is a regularly-organized
          channel through which the blessings of his kingdom flow unto his
          Saints, when they are found in obedience to his laws.
          It is something like the streams that water our city. At first
          they come out in large streams from the mountains; then they are
          divided off into sections, which spread and diminish into smaller
          sections: but they all flow through the legitimate channel.
          How could any of you water your gardens, if the City Creek should
          be stopped? It would not only stop the leading channel, but all
          the little channels. We are made thus to depend upon one another
          in the order and kingdom of God. Where is the necessity of all
          this? Because of the things I first mentioned. But have not we
          all the Spirit of God? We ought to have. Well, then, can we not
          all understand? Yes, if we live our religion, we can understand
          the various duties that devolve upon us as individuals--as
          fathers, mothers, and children, or as Elders of Israel. We can
          understand those several and distinct duties to a certain extent;
          but we cannot lead the Church and kingdom of God--we cannot point
          out the path for it to walk in. Why? Because that does not belong
          to us. It belongs to the head. One of those little streams that
          you get to water your garden cannot supply all this city. No: but
          it can supply your garden, if it flows through the proper
          Suppose that little stream should say, "I am independent of the
          fountain," would it be so? You know it would not. It is like the
          branches of a tree and the root and stock of a tree. The branches
          flourish on a healthy stock, and one little twig on the outside,
          with a few green leaves upon it and a little fruit, is very
          productive, beautiful, and pleasant to look upon; but it is no
          more than a portion of the tree. It is not the tree. Where does
          it get its nourishment from? From the root and the stock or stem,
          and through the various branches that exist on the tree. It is
          only a small portion of the tree. It is all the leaves, twigs,
          branches, stem, and roots that comprise the tree. The branches do
          not support the tree, the root, or the stem; but the stem
          supports the branches, and the roots the stem; and it is through
          that that life and vivacity flow to the branches.
          As a saint you say, "I think I understand my duty, and I am doing
          very well." That may be so. You see the little twig: it is green;
          it flourishes and is the very picture of life. It bears its part
          and proportion in the tree, and is connected with the stem,
          branches, and root. But could the tree live without it? Yes, it
          could. It need not boast itself and get uplifted and say, "How
          green I am! and how I flourish! and what a healthy position I am
          in! How well I am doing! and I am in my proper place and am doing
          right." But could you do without the root? No: you bear your
          proper part and position in the tree. Just so with this people.
          When they are doing their part--when they are magnifying their
          calling, living their religion, and walking in obedience to the
          Spirit of the Lord, they have a portion of his Spirit given to
          them to profit withal. And while they are humble, faithful,
          diligent, and observe the laws and commandments of God, they
          stand in their proper position on the tree: they are flourishing;
          the buds, blossoms, leaves, and everything about them are all
          right, and they form a part and parcel of the tree and conduce to
          its life, health, symmetry, beauty, and general appearance.
          But if we do not magnify our calling, what then? We become like
          withered branches. And what is done with them? A good gardener
          will cut them off, because they disfigure the tree: they are not
          pleasant, lovely, and beautiful to look upon. But does the most
          flourishing branch in the tree sustain the tree? It helps to do
          it; but it is not the tree: it is dependent on the larger
          branches, through which the sap or nourishment flows until it
          comes to the little twig and fruit on the outside of the tree.
          This is a fit similitude of the Church and kingdom of God. We are
          cemented together--united in the bonds of one common covenant. We
          are part and parcel of the Church and kingdom of God which the
          Lord has planted on the earth in the last days for the
          accomplishment of his purposes and establishment of his kingdom,
          and the bringing to pass all those things which have been spoken
          of by all the holy Prophets since the world began. We all stand
          in our proper places.
          While we magnify our callings, we honour our God; while we
          magnify our calling, we possess a portion of the Spirit of God;
          while we magnify our calling, we altogether comprise the tree;
          while we magnify our calling, the Spirit of God flows through the
          proper channels by which and through which we receive our proper
          nourishment and are instructed in things pertaining to our
          welfare, happiness, and interest pertaining to this world and the
          world to come.
          But as it is very difficult to enter into all the minutiae
          pertaining to a tree, a shrub, or herb, so it is difficult to
          enter into all the duties, responsibilities, and influences
          brought to bear and weigh upon the Saints of God and upon his
          Church and kingdom on the earth. For instance, the tree required
          water and good soil to nourish it; it requires congenial
          atmosphere and the hand of the pruner sometimes, in order to keep
          it right. So does the Church and kingdom of God. There are
          various influences that are brought to bear on it, in order that
          it may flourish and grow. How can we grow, as a Church and
          kingdom, unless we are taught of the Lord through some medium
          that he has appointed.
          Who is there that can rise up and tell the destiny of this Church
          and kingdom? Who is there, for instance, that can point out the
          bearings and the operations of the soldiery that are now on our
          borders? Who can tell the Lord's design in relation to these
          matters, and why it is that we are thus situated?--why we are
          called upon to resist them, few as we now are? Could not the Lord
          control it otherwise? He could. Has he not the hearts of all men
          in his keeping? Could he not roll them back very quickly? Yes; or
          he could cause them to come on here. Why is it that he has
          allowed them to come to a certain distance, and kept them there,
          placing them like some of you mothers sometimes do, when you hang
          up a rod, that the children can see it, and that you can point to
          when they are naughty?
          Why is it that we have been driven and afflicted and persecuted,
          and our names cast out as evil, and that we have had to endure so
          many privations, sufferings, toils, and hardships for the last
          twenty years? Who can solve these questions? Who can enter into
          the secrets of the Most High and unravel the mysteries that dwell
          in mind of Jehovah?
          Who can tell why these things are brought to operate as they do,
          and why we are placed in those peculiar circumstances in which we
          so frequently find ourselves as we travel through this vale of
          tears? Does that belong to the little twigs and branches? No. It
          may be a secret in the mind of the great God which is not fully
          developed unto us. We may comprehend a part of it, and realize in
          some degree the position we occupy and the dealings of God
          towards us; but who can tell it in its full bearings? Who can
          comprehend the end from the beginning? Who can see what the Lord
          designs towards us as individuals and towards us as a people? Or
          rather and more directly, who can tell what he has destined
          concerning his Church and kingdom upon the earth--when and how
          and by what means it shall progress, whether by affliction or
          prosperity, whether by passing through scenes of trouble and
          difficulty, or by elevating us and giving us peace and the
          prospect of a great deal of good according to our ideas of
          Who can tell what means the Lord may make use of to benefit you
          or me? Does it remain for the outside twig or the little stream
          flowing from the fountain to unravel these matters? No. Who can
          point out the position we shall take in a Church capacity, in the
          capacity of the Priesthood, in the capacity of heads of families,
          in a military capacity, or in any other capacity, in relation to
          all these matters.
          It needs a great controlling, directing influence to sustain,
          govern, direct, enlighten, and dictate. It needs that every
          branch of the tree and every twig should be in its proper place,
          and should receive that nourishment from the proper source, and
          that spirit, and that intelligence, and that direction which God
          has ordained according to all the laws of nature and that is
          interwoven in all his transactions with the human family,--that
          there should be a great directing, controlling influence to guide
          and direct his affairs.
          Furthermore, why is it that there is so much confusion in the
          world--that we have imbibed so many incorrect principles while
          living among them, which we find is so difficult to rid ourselves
          of at this time? It is because men have not been under that
          influence and power, but every man has done that which he has
          considered to be right, without any respect to the great
          fundamental principles of government and the laws that ought to
          regulate and control the human family. This has been one great
          cause of the calamities that have afflicted the world in a
          social, in a family, and in a national capacity; for nations,
          like individuals, have all corrupted themselves, have forsaken
          God, and have never been under the great governing influence that
          ought to regulate and control the affairs of the world.
          And why is it that we sometimes feel so much of the spirit of
          rebellion in our bosoms and that spirit of independence, falsely
          so called, and feel so desirous to pursue our own course, and a
          latent principle within us which is so reluctant to render
          obedience to the laws of the kingdom of God?
          In the first place, it is because of our early associations--of
          our former habits of thought and reflection. In the second place,
          it is because we do not cultivate sufficiently the Spirit of the
          Lord, which, if we did, would show unto us the right way and
          enable us to appreciate the privileges we enjoy. It is, perhaps,
          one of the hardest things for those associated with the Church
          and kingdom of God, or for the human family, to render obedience
          to the laws that regulate that kingdom and to the Priesthood
          which God has placed in his Church to govern it. Why? Because of
          our former associations and habits, and because of the power of
          the prince and power of the air who rules in the hearts of the
          children of disobedience, and goes about as a roaring lion,
          seeking whom he may devour.
          We are apt to look at things in too narrow a compass, like a
          little twig on the end or furthest branch of a tree. It is very
          flourishing; its buds and blossoms are very elegant and fragrant,
          because it is in a healthy position. But then it would be very
          foolish for that little twig to say it knew all about it, when
          you could not cut it from the tree a single day but it would
          wither and die, and all its beauty and fragrance would depart.
          Have we any light, any intelligence, any knowledge? Have we
          advanced in the principles of truth communicated to us? Yes. How
          did we get our intelligence? Tell me, ye wise men of the
          world--you that have mixed with the world and have studied their
          laws, principles of government, usages, habits, and customs, and
          have made yourselves familiar with their erudition. What do you
          know of the relation and fitness of things, of the position man
          occupies to his Maker? What do you know in relation to yourselves
          as individuals? What do you know in relation to the purposes and
          designs of God? What do you know about the first principles of
          the Gospel of Christ? I do not think you know anything about
          them. If you do, you are wiser that men I have come across in my
          travels through the world. Just as that little twig is indebted
          for its life and vigour to the tree, so are you indebted entirely
          to the Lord for the light and intelligence you have received on
          every subject. You are indebted to the Spirit of God for your
          wisdom and intelligence, as much as the little twig is indebted
          to the tree for its vitality, leaves, buds, and fragrance.
          If that is the case so far, how much more will it be so in the
          future? Who is there that can contemplate the mind of God and
          unravel the designs of Jehovah? Who can foretell the destiny of
          the human family? Who can point out the path that we as a people
          shall walk in? Who shall say, in regard to any of the dealings of
          God with us, that this is right and that is wrong--that such a
          thing is for our benefit, and another thing is for our injury?
          Who can mend, alter, or change these events, and make them better
          that they are? If we cannot tell all these things, let us be
          reminded of another thing--never to find fault with things as
          they transpire--with things that we cannot improve. Some of us
          may say, "Well, it is a little hard that we should be placed as
          we are at the present time; and if we had been in Egypt, it might
          have been better with us. However, if we were now in Egypt, we
          could not say we were eating the leeks and onions, for we are now
          eating them. Our enemies are on the outside. But we might say we
          are thrown into awkward circumstances. We have had to go out in
          the inclement season of the year to face a foe, because of our
          religion; and if we had been somewhere else we might have avoided
          it." You might, and you might have not: that would altogether
          depend on circumstances.
          If you had been among those fellows out eastward, you would have
          been worse off a great deal. I would rather be in our position
          than be in theirs. "But the future!" say you: "How do we know but
          next spring they will come in here and swallow us completely up?"
          Brother Brigham says, "We shall have to be greased first." And
          there is no grease on their cattle to do it at present. What do
          we know about these things? I speak so that we may reflect upon
          them. "We would a little rather those men were away somewhere
          else." I do not know that I would. I feel, notwithstanding our
          inexperience, and the many blunders we make, and the various
          evils many of us fall into, that we are the best people under the
          face of the heavens, and that God has called us, and set us
          apart, and placed his name among us, and given unto us the
          oracles of God to reveal unto us his mind and will, that by us he
          may establish his kingdom on the earth.
          In relation to anything that has or may transpire, I feel that we
          are in the hands of God, and all is right. " But we would like to
          have whipped those fellows out"--so say some of us. "We would
          like to see them turn tail too and go off their own way." But I
          would not, because the Lord would not. I feel perfectly easy that
          I am in the hands of God, and everything I have; and so are you.
          We are his people, and he is our God, and his Spirit dictates,
          rules, controls, and governs; and while we do right, and keep the
          commandments of God, and live up to our privileges, we have a
          right to claim the Spirit of God and live in the enjoyment of it
          every moment of our life.
          As is regards his kingdom and purposes, I would rather risk his
          judgment and plan than my own. I feel myself so incompetent, and
          I believe you are the same, and know so little about the future
          designs of God and his purposes pertaining to the human family,
          and what will most conduce to our individual welfare and to our
          welfare as a people, that I do not want to put my hand to steady
          the ark.
          I will say, "It is the Lord, and let him do what seemeth him
          good." If he has a mind to let the Devil send up one thousand,
          ten thousand, or five hundred thousand men against us, all right.
          I was going to say, Who the devil cares? We are in the hands of
          God. And while we are willing to do his work and fulfil the
          duties that devolve upon us, it is his business to take care of
          his saints. He has said it is, and I feel like saying amen to it.
          I want to learn what my duty is, not only for one day, but every
          day, and then to try to do it. This is a feeling we ought to all
          have as I understand it. A great work has to be established on
          the earth.
          We read and talk about things and reflect upon what the Lord is
          going to do. He is going to build up his kingdom, and all
          kingdoms, powers, and dominions will be brought into subjection
          to the kingdom of our God; and "every creature which is in
          heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in
          the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and
          honour, and glory, and power be unto him that sitteth upon the
          throne, and unto the Lamb, for ever and ever."
          These are very nice words, and the prospect is very pleasing
          indeed. But, the question is, Can we acknowledge the hand of God?
          Can I acknowledge his dealings with my family? If you reflect
          back, some of you were in better circumstances than you are now:
          you were better clad and provided for in many respects. While you
          reflect on this, and find that you have many hard things to cope
          with, can you say, "It is the hand of God; let him do as seemeth
          him good?" If you have to go out into the cold storms and snow,
          and if your wives are troubled about it, you sisters, can you
          say, "It is the hand of God, and let him do as seemeth him good?"
          Can you feel that you are the children of God, associated with
          his kingdom, and that it is one thing to talk about a thing, and
          another to do it? Can you feel that you are willing to do your
          duties, magnify your callings, submit to whatever the Lord places
          upon your shoulders, and say, "It is the Lord; let him do what
          seemeth him good?" If we, who profess to be Latter-day
          Saints--we, who have taken upon us the name of Christ--we, who
          have been baptised in his name for the remission of sins and had
          the laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost--who have
          received our washings, and anointings, and teachings from the
          mouthpiece of Jehovah,--we, who have lived under the sunshine of
          the light and intelligence that flowed from the mouth of God,--if
          we, who have partaken of so great and precious privileges and
          blessings, cannot do these things, how long will it be before
          every creature in heaven, on the earth, and under the earth will
          be heard to say, "Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power be
          unto him," &c.? It is necessary for us to reflect upon these
          duties and responsibilities, and try, each one of us, so to live,
          act, move, and obey, and so to fulfil the laws, commandments, and
          ordinances of God, that in every position we occupy we shall move
          along like a well-organized piece of machinery, or like a tree
          whereon every branch, stem, leaf, twig, and blossom will be found
          to flourish, that we may all magnify our God and flourish before
          Do you not think the Lord will take care of his own tree or
          people? and do you not think he will do just what is right? Some
          of us would have liked to have killed a lot of those soldiers. I
          would, if the Lord had said so; and if he did not want it, I did
          not. It is rather a dirty business anyhow; and if he has a mind
          to use some other means and let them wiggle themselves out their
          own way, I have no objections to it. I would rather go out in the
          kanyon and live on bread and beef than go to work at killing men.
          If the Lord can make use of us in that way, it is all right.
          I do not remember having read in any history, or had related to
          me any circumstance where an army has been subjugated so easily,
          and their power wasted away so effectually without bloodshed, as
          this in our borders. If this is not the manifestation of the
          power of God to us, I do not know what is. Has any man's life
          been lost in it? No--not one. It is true our brethren have been
          fired upon; but their balls failed of doing injury that was
          expected. Our brethren were told not to retaliate, and they did
          not do it. Where is there such a manifestation of the power of
          Suppose you or I had had the dictation of this matter, we should
          have been firing clear away on the Sweetwater, and killed a lot
          of them before they god here. It was not we, then, that directed
          this matter. No. Who was it? Way, it was those who are placed
          over us; and those very things that seemed hard for us to do at
          that time have really accomplished one of the greatest things
          that history has yet developed. The power of God never was made
          more manifest.
          Where did it take place, and how? Out of the fountain head. It
          flowed through the stem of the tree: it came from City Creek
          kanyon, to go to one of our former figures, and through the
          proper channels. My judgment would have said, "Go and kill them
          off," long ago. I should have said, "Holloa, here!--150 men drive
          those teams in here that are on Ham's Fork before the soldiers
          arrive, and then we will kill off the scoundrels by piecemeal."
          And that would have been the judgment of most men: it would have
          been according to natural reasoning. But God does not see as men;
          he reasons not as man. Although we may partially comprehend our
          individual duties, we do not understand how to regulate the
          Church of God. It needs the regular organization and the Spirit
          to direct through the proper Channels; and hence the result of
          these events that are manifest now before our eyes.
          Would you like the soldiers away? I do not know that I would; I
          do not care anything about it. Perhaps the Lord may have hung
          them up there, like the mother hangs up the rod and points to it.
          Does the mother want to hurt the chile? No. Neither does she want
          to be continually scolding. The Lord may not be angry at us, but
          he does not want us to be continually disobeying his authority
          and going contrary to his law.
          Suppose Uncle Sam should rise up in his red hot wrath, and send
          50,000 men here--[President Brigham Young says his own fire would
          burn him out]--who of us can tell the result? I speak of these
          things that we may reflect. Who can tell what will come next? Who
          knows about the future? You see the position we are placed
          in--that we are dependent on the Lord and on his counsel, and all
          that we can do or say will be according to that from this time
          henceforth and for ever. Zion begins to rise, her light being
          come. The glory of the Lord is rising upon us.
          Will the law of God go from Zion, and his word from Jerusalem?
          Will he rebuke strong nations afar off and manifest his power
          through his Priesthood? How, when, and in what manner will these
          things be brought about? Who can say? Do you not see that we are
          just as ignorant to-day in regard to many of the events that
          pertain to the kingdom of God as we were on the day we were
          baptized? At the same time, we were then ignorant in relation to
          many principles that are now plain and familiar to us. And so it
          will be from this time forward. It needs a guiding hand--a man
          filled with the Spirit of God, and not only that, but the Lord to
          communicate with, that he may comprehend the designs of God and
          lead forth Israel in the paths they should go.
          What shall we do, then? Shall we begin to fret, and whine, and
          grunt, and groan about this and that, and because we think things
          are in a very bad fix? We ought to feel that we are in the Church
          and kingdom of God, and that God is at the helm, and that all is
          right and will continue to be. I feel as easy as an old shoe.
          What if we should be driven to the mountains? Let us be driven.
          What if we have to burn our houses? Why, set fire to them with a
          good grace, and dance a jig round them while they are burning.
          What do I care about these things? We are in the hands of God,
          and all is right, Brother Brigham says we are used to it, and we
          shall not feel it hard.
               Brethren, we are eternal beings and are associated with
          eternal principles: we are in the Church and kingdom of God upon
          the earth, and that kingdom is an eternal kingdom, and we are
          bound by and associated with eternal principles: we are beginning
          to live for ever, and are acting not only for time, but for
          eternity. And as our minds expand and the things of God unfold
          themselves unto us from time to time, we shall see the fitness of
          things and the wisdom, guidance, and protection of Jehovah, just
          as much as it has been manifest unto us in the events that have
          lately transpired. And if we go to sleep or die, it is only the
          starting-point to live for ever.
          We have got within us the principles of eternal life. If our
          bodies shall crumble into the dust, we shall move in another
          sphere and associate with other intelligences that are connected
          with the same kingdom and government, and continue to live and
          roll forth the purposes of God. And if we should have war and a
          few things like this, never mind: who cares? Just grin and bear
          it. Do right and cleave to God, and all will go off well.
          These ideas lead us to reflection and to consider the designs of
          God; and if we are faithful, they will tend to purify us. No
          trouble for the present is joyous, but grievous; yet it yields
          the peaceable fruits of righteousness to those who are exercised
          therewith; while we look not at the things that are seen, but
          things that are not seen; for the things that are seen are
          temporal, but the things that are unseen are eternal.
          How many evil propensities yet remain in our bosoms! How prone
          are we to depart from the right path? How liable are our spirits
          to rebel against the order and government of God! How many
          feelings are in us that do not accord with those principles that
          dwell in the bosom of Jehovah and cannot associate with those
          intelligences that are associated with him in the eternal world!
          How necessary it is that we should have faith, teaching,
          instruction, and a whole train of events to keep our minds awake
          to the subject of our existence as eternal beings, that we may
          honour our calling on the earth, honour our God, fulfil our
          destiny, to prepare us for a celestial exaltation in the eternal
          world! Do you not see the necessity of these trials and
          afflictions and scenes we have to pass through? It is the Lord
          who puts us in positions that are the most calculated to promote
          the best interests of his people. My opinion is, that, far from
          these things that now surround us being an injury to us and the
          kingdom of God, they will give it one of the greatest hoists that
          it has ever had yet; and all is right and all will be right, if
          we keep the commandments of God. What is the position, then, that
          we ought to occupy--every man, woman, and child? Do our duty
          before God--honour him, and all is right. And concerning events
          yet to transpire, we must trust them in the hands of God, and
          feel that "whatever is is right," and that God will control all
          things for our best good and the interest of his Church and
          kingdom on the earth. If we live here and prosper, all right; if
          we leave here, all right; and if we have to pass through
          affliction, all right. By-and-by, when we come to gaze on the
          fitness of things that are now obscure to us, we shall find that
          God, although he has moved in a mysterious way to accomplish his
          purposes on the earth and his purposes relative to us as
          individuals and as families, all things are governed by that
          wisdom which flows from God, and all things are right and
          calculated to promote every person's eternal welfare before God.
          May God bless you and guide you in the way of truth continually.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Wilford
          Woodruff, December 6, 1857
                         Wilford Woodruff, December 6, 1857
                            OF THE CHRISTIAN WORLD, ETC.
             Remarks by Elder Wilford Woodruff, made in the Tabernacle,
                       Great Salt Lake City, December 6, 1857.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          I esteem it a privilege at all times to join with my brethren in
          bearing testimony to the work of God. I am satisfied that we, as
          a people, have great reason to rejoice for the privileges and
          blessings granted unto us in these valleys of the mountains by
          our Father in heaven. We are in a great school; and it is a
          profitable one, in which we are receiving very important lessons
          from day to day. We are taught to cultivate our minds, to control
          our thoughts, to thoroughly bring our whole being into subjection
          to the Spirit and law of God, that we may learn to be one and act
          as the heart of one man, that we may carry out the purposes of
          God upon the earth. Yes, we are taught many principles which tend
          to our exaltation and glory, which could not be made manifest
          unto us only as they are revealed unto us by the inspiration of
          the Almighty, through the mouth of his servants the Prophets.
          The principles of the Gospel of Jesus Christ are made plain to us
          by the figures and illustrations which have been made to-day, and
          which are made from time to time so plain that a child could not
          misunderstand,--also to impress upon our minds our duties. Those
          principles are not surrounded with that mystery that shrouds the
          doctrines taught by the sectarian world.
          We, as a people, have long been praying for the kingdom of God to
          come, and his will to be done on the earth as it is done in
          heaven. We have been taught this prayer from childhood; but
          neither we nor our parents understood what we were praying for,
          only we made a practice of uttering those words from tradition,
          and never understood the meaning until we were made acquainted
          with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Since we have become acquainted
          with brother Joseph and the Gospel, we have looked forward with
          much interest to the day when the kingdom of God should be
          established upon the earth in the same light, power, and glory in
          which the Apostles and Prophets saw it by vision and revelation;
          and that all which God has promised concerning it should have its
          During the last twenty or twenty-five years, many things have
          been prophesied; and the Lord, through his servants, has made
          many promises which have been revealed unto us concerning the
          blessings that are in store for us if we faithfully do our duty.
          I can say, with my brethren, that I rejoice that I am in these
          valleys of the mountains associated with the people of God a
          thousand miles from Christianity, civilization, and the fruits
          thereof--at least such as are now manifest throughout the
          Christian world; and I feel to prize this blessing and to
          acknowledge the hand of God in leading us here; for the hand of
          God has been plainly visible in delivering us from the hands of
          our persecutors and planting us in a land of health, peace, and
          safety; and the more my mind is enlightened by the Holy Spirit
          the more precious and glorious do these principles appear unto
          I am satisfied that all is right in Zion. All is right with those
          who lead us. All is right as far as we do right. We have enjoyed
          many blessings during the past year. The Lord has in his mercy
          poured out his Holy Spirit upon us as a people, and there is a
          great change with the inhabitants of Zion during the past year.
          We were in a great measure asleep; and the Lord, knowing the
          things which lay before us, poured our is Holy Spirit abundantly
          upon our leaders, who called upon us to wake up, and the Spirit
          of God was poured out upon the people; and they have, in a great
          measure, endeavoured to repent, forsake their sins, and unite
          themselves together to carry out the counsels of his servants. I
          have never seen the hearts of this people so united as during the
          past year. No person who has listened to the words of the
          Presidency of this Church during a few months past, and has seen
          the fulfilment of their sayings, but can clearly see the hand of
          God with them and his Spirit guiding them continually.
          The day that many of us have anticipated, since we have been made
          acquainted with Joseph Smith and the Gospel, has begun to dawn
          upon us. The revelations of Jesus Christ are fast fulfilling
          before our eyes. We see the kingdom set up, and the time has come
          when the nation that has given many of us birth has entered the
          field as our open enemies and persecutors, and commenced an
          unhallowed persecution against us, with a determination to
          destroy us from off the earth. The same as cities, towns,
          counties, and states have done before them, they have united
          together to crush and destroy this people, and remove them, if
          possible, from the earth.
          Ever since I have been made acquainted with the Gospel and the
          progress of this people, I have always believed that the United
          States would take this course, and, in a national capacity and
          under the form of law, seek to destroy the Church and kingdom of
          God from off the earth. For the light has come unto them and the
          Gospel of salvation has been offered unto them, and they have
          rejected it and killed the Prophets. Hence, the light and Spirit
          of God is taken from them, sin abounds, and they are filled with
          anger against all that is good. Their course is unconstitutional
          and contrary to every principle of law, righteousness, justice,
          judgment, and truth. In all our persecutions, are persecutors
          have had no just cause for pursuing the course against us they
          have, only they were stirred up by the Devil. Darkness,
          wickedness, and abominations of every kind are increasing in the
          minds of the wicked nations of the earth, because the Spirit of
          God is withdrawing from them. They have had the fulness of the
          everlasting Gospel offered unto them, but they have rejected it.
          There has never been a set of men since the Lord made the world
          who have laboured more diligently then the Twelve Apostles and
          Elders of this Church in preaching the Gospel to the world. They
          have rejected the message sent to them, revealed by an angel from
          God, which leaves them now under condemnation. Brother Joseph
          would have embraced the whole circle of the human family in the
          principles of salvation, if he had possessed the power. He had
          the greatness of soul never seen in the human breast, unless it
          was inspired by the power of God. That same Spirit has rested
          upon the present Presidency of this Church: they have laboured
          incessantly for years to save the children of men. And what have
          we received in return from the hands of the Christian world? They
          have driven us from our homes and firesides, and smitten and
          robbed us of the rights that are dear and most sacred to man,
          until we have at last been driven from the borders of
          civilization, so called, unto the wilderness, by the nation that
          has given us birth, whose boasted freedom exists only in name.
          Here they expected we should perish; but we still live, grow, and
          flourish in these mountains, through the mercy and goodness of
          God, without the aid or assistance of our persecutors.
          Our nation was under no condemnation in this respect until the
          light came and they heard the Gospel, rejected it, and cast out
          the Saints from their midst, slaying their leaders and depriving
          thousands of the Latter-day Saints, who were American citizens,
          of every blessing, right, and privilege guaranteed unto them by
          the constitution and laws of the United States. Many of our
          nation have been guilty of crimes, in their persecutions against
          us, that would cost the lives of presidents, governors, senators,
          legislators, and many thousands of men, if law and justice were
          executed in righteousness against them. I do not know what more
          they can do to fill up the cup of their condemnation than to
          carry out the course they have begun. There is more crime,
          wickedness, and abomination committed now throughout the United
          States, according to the population, in 24 hours--a thousand
          times--than there was thirty years ago. I do not suppose there
          has been a generation more wicked and corrupt than the present
          Christian world.
          We have been told to-day that we are under great obligation to
          God, and that we ought to acknowledge his hand in all things.
          That is true. We had no knowledge of the plan of salvation until
          God revealed it unto us. We are dependent upon God and his
          servants for light and truth and blessings that are in store for
          We are told that the kingdoms of this world will become the
          kingdoms of our God and his Christ. Daniel of old says this, and
          pointed out the establishment of that kingdom in the last days
          which should stand for ever and not be thrown down. He also
          pointed out the effects which would follow. The Lord has already
          revealed great and glorious truths and principles concerning the
          government of the children of men in the establishment of his
          Church and kingdom upon the earth. Does it not require as much
          wisdom and revelation from God to govern the nations of the earth
          in a way to bring men into subjection to righteous laws, light,
          privileges, and blessings which they are now deprived of in the
          organization of temporal governments of the world, as is required
          in the spiritual government of the Church of Christ upon the
          earth? Where is that knowledge to flow from? The spirit to do men
          good and relieve the sufferings of mankind does not dwell in the
          breasts of monarchs, kings, presidents, and rulers among the
          nations of the earth at the present day; but sorrow, crime,
          poverty, tyranny, oppression, and starvation prevail throughout
          the world.
          The rulers of mankind have not sought for the Spirit of God and
          the light of eternity to show them the responsibility they are
          under to Him who has raised them to power and authority and given
          them dominion over their fellow-beings. They have not exercised
          their power and authority to honour God and redress the wrongs of
          the poor and oppressed over whom they preside.
               The misery and evils which now exist throughout the world
          have got to be corrected, in a great measure, through the power
          of God, before the kingdoms of this world will become the
          kingdoms of God and his Christ. It is a great and mighty work to
          establish the kingdom of God on the earth, that the law may go
          forth from Zion to rule the kingdoms of the world. The light,
          knowledge, truth, and wisdom to do this has got to come through
          the holy Priesthood, which is the government of God upon the
          Our temporal and eternal salvation is all connected and linked
          together, as we have been told to-day. The Lord has raised up
          unto us fathers, leaders, and counsellors after his own heart:
          they possess his will, and they are leading the people to
          exaltation and glory. If we take their counsel, we shall receive
          all the salvation men can desire in time and in eternity. I thank
          God that I have lived to see the dawn of this glorious day.
          With regard to the dealings of the Lord with us this present
          season, President Young has been as calm and serene as a summer's
          morning, and so have his Counsellors; and that spirit in a great
          measure has been diffused among the people. When there was every
          appearance, outwardly, of our enemies coming upon us, the spirit
          with them has been all the time, "We do not believe we shall have
          to go to battle or shed the blood of our enemies this season."
          This has been the feeling when, to all human appearance, it would
          seem that we should have to shed the blood of our enemies, or
          they ours. There is not such an example on history as the way in
          which our enemies have been stayed from fulfilling their hellish
          designs. It is the first time the American army has been stayed
          in their course. They got as far as Ham's Fork, and there they
          stuck. We have heard read their gracious proclamation. Many of
          the brethren wonder that they have not the wisdom enough to make
          out a decent document; but I do not wonder at it, for this whole
          people have prayed that their natural wisdom might be taken from
          them. I should wonder if they had wisdom to make a sensible
          document, or one that would pass an examination.
          The Lord so far has fought our battles and has proved his people.
          When men have been called upon to go out and lie in the path of
          the enemy, I have not known one instance of a man's refusing to
          go. All have been willing to go and do as they were told. The
          Lord has proved you in this and has accepted your offering. The
          prayers of the Saints of God have been heard, and they will never
          fail of being heard and answered, if we do our duty; for we have
          a ruler who can do something for us, when our cause is just. I
          feel as brother Taylor said to-day: it matters not to me what the
          Lord designs of us; we should be passive in his hands.
          When different opinions were expressed as to the course to be
          pursued this fall with our enemies, the Spirit has said to me at
          the time, "Be still and passive, and pray that wisdom may be
          given to President Young to dictate and lead just right." There
          is where our prayers should centre. We should continually call
          upon the Lord to inspire him with wisdom sufficient to lead forth
          the Church and kingdom of God unto exaltation, glory, and
          It is different with us to what it is with the world. We have a
          main channel through which to receive our light, knowledge, and
          blessings, as was beautifully illustrated by the President in the
          figure of the gas-pipe. You may take the smartest men that talent
          and learning ever made, and put them in the Church of God, and
          they never can get ahead of their leader. Their wisdom would be
          turned into folly. Why? Because they are not called to lead. If a
          man has never learned a letter of a book, if the Lord calls upon
          him to lead the Church and kingdom of God, he will give him power
          to do it. We have had these lessons laid before us day after day,
          calling upon us to be united, and our hearts to become as the
          heart of one man, that our prayers and works may be centred to
          one point in carrying our the counsel of our head.
          The Lord will lead President Young where he wants him to go. We
          know God is with him and has led him all the time; and he led
          Joseph while he lived. The Quorum of the Twelve may exhaust their
          talent and acquirements in exhibiting principle upon any matter
          which belongs to the head to reveal, and yet the Prophet has to
          point out the error and set us right. The whole Church may unite
          to carry out any point that ought to come through the head, and
          we could not effect. It requires brother Brigham to tell us what
          is right and what is wrong in many things, because that is his
          place and calling. There is a perfect channel existing between
          the Lord and him, through which he obtains wisdom, which is
          diffused through other channels to the people. That we know. We
          have got to learn to bring this knowledge into practice.
          Let this people go to work and sustain the head of this Church
          all the time, and let their prayers continually ascend in his
          behalf, that God may give him wisdom for our guidance; then, no
          matter if armies approach us, or all hell boils over. Let the
          people be perfectly passive in the hands of God, live their
          religion, and learn and profit by the daily lessons they receive;
          then you will find that glory, victory, and prosperity will abide
          with this kingdom.
          I do not believe that any General, since the Lord made the world,
          has been the subject of more earnest prayers than General Wells
          has since he has been out in the mountains. He has been well
          sustained, and so has President Young. I hope we may increase in
          this until we arrive at perfection. Then you will see clockwork,
          perfect harmony, and the effects of it wherever it is
          manifest--whether it be in a Bishop over his ward, in the Twelve
          Apostles, in a President over a Branch of the Church, or in a
          father over his family. You will obtain blessings, by thus
          sustaining every man in his place and calling, which you cannot
          get by any other principle. But cross a Bishop, a Prophet, or a
          father over his family in their track, and you will see a
          friction immediately: you will see trouble, difficulty, darkness,
          and affliction; and nothing will go right. This is the principle
          that will save this kingdom and lead it forth to glory, victory,
          and salvation.
          We have been driven and afflicted for 25 years, and gained an
          experience we now begin to profit by, that we might attain power
          to judge properly of contrasts and of right and wrong. Had
          President Young and this people remained undisturbed in Kirtland
          from '34 till this time, we could not have gained the same
          experience we now have; therefore I believe that hand of God has
          been in all that we have passed through. The experience of the
          First Presidency of this Church has been very great. No man that
          lives has passed through the same school: hence their great
          knowledge and wisdom, aided by the inspiration of the Almighty.
          I do not know what the intention of the Lord is as to us in the
          future, but victory is promised unto this people.
          The kingdom of God is in the Valleys of the Mountains, and we
          enjoy its blessings. That should be sufficient for us. As to
          outward losses, they are of little consequence. The law of God is
          in the mouths of those who are set to lead us. If the Lord should
          give a revelation through them that would appear contrary to our
          traditions--our customs, or reveal new principles--things which
          have been hid from the foundation of the world, it should not try
          the faith of the Saints. The Lord has given revelations according
          to the capacity of the children of men.
          If there was a point where man in his progression could not
          proceed any further, the very idea would throw a gloom over every
          intelligent and reflecting mind. God himself is increasing and
          progressing in knowledge, power, and dominion, and will do so,
          worlds without end. It is just so with us. We are in a probation,
          which is a school of experience.
          It is a blessing to breathe the element that is in this place--to
          behold the unity of the people in trying to bring their wills
          into subjection to the will of the Lord their God. I am glad we
          are here, and our enemies where they are. Those of us who have
          been here for some ten years cannot realize the great contrast
          between Utah and the rest of the world. We hardly know how to
          prize our privileges. Were we placed in any of the large cities
          of the United States and Europe, we should hardly believe we were
          in the same world. The sounds of blasphemy are not heard in our
          street: rioting, drunkenness, whoredom, rape, and murder, and the
          black catalogue of crime practised in the Christian world do not
          meet the eye or salute the ear of the passer-by in Utah. The
          contrast between the City of Great Salt Lake and the cities of
          the nations abroad, touching the order, decency, virtue, and
          moral character of the people here, cannot be told.
          Having been made acquainted with the Gospel, we have been trying
          to improve ourselves. We have a good degree of faith in our
          leaders, and tried to follow the word of God from their mouths.
          We have improved in these things, and my prayer is the we may
          continue so to do and prize the blessings, privileges, freedom,
          and spirit and power of the Holy Ghost that are poured upon us in
          these peaceful valleys. We need not any longer thirst for the
          things that are in the world. We are the best off of any people.
          If there is any peace, safety, or salvation, it is here.
          The day is not far distant when nation will rise against nation,
          and kingdom against kingdom, and State against State, and there
          will be sorrow such as never was among men. Watch the signs of
          the times, for we are living in an important age. The prophecies
          relating to our time are rolling in upon us. Are we prepared to
          meet them? It is important for men and angels to note the events
          of this age. We live in the commencement of a new era of the
          dealings of God with the world. The earth has been under the
          dominion of the Devil almost from its creation. But in our day
          the Lord has set up his kingdom, never to be destroyed.
          The Lord has planted his Church and kingdom upon the earth in
          other ages; but those that undertook to maintain it were soon
          destroyed, through the power of wicked men and devils. Righteous
          men were not permitted to live upon the earth. Even the Son of
          God was not permitted to preach righteousness but a short time
          before he and his followers were crucified and slain. But the day
          has not come when he has begun to prepare the way that he may
          come and take possession of the earth himself, and reign King of
          nations, as he does now King of Saints. The day of the Devil's
          power to prevail against the kingdom of God has passed away. The
          kingdom is within you, in the valleys of these mountains.
          Brothers Joseph, and Hyrum, and Willard, and Jedediah, and
          Parley, and a host of others who have gone behind the vail, are
          as much engaged in the establishment of this kingdom, and in our
          welfare as a people, as we are.
          We should prize and not abuse the blessings God has put within
          our power, and improve upon the lessons we learn, and obey the
          teachings given to us, through the inspiration of the Holy Ghost
          to the servants of God set to lead us. We have everything to
          encourage us. We are favoured of God; and whom the Lord favours
          who can successfully oppose? Would President Buchanan have sent
          an army here to lay a foundation for our destruction, if the eyes
          of his understanding had not been darkened? No. If he had been
          enlightened by the Holy Spirit and could have foreseen the reward
          he will meet, he would sooner have suffered his blood to have
          been spilled; and it would have been better for him. The nation
          does not know what they are doing, not comprehend the fearful
          results of the course they are pursuing. They are turning the
          last key to rend the nation asunder, and they will be broken as a
          potter's vessel, and cast down as a nation, to rise no more for
          ever. For whenever the rulers of any nation trample their own
          constitution and laws under foot, and oppress and destroy the
          weak, because they have the power and the people love to have it
          so, they sow the seeds of their own dissolution, and the will
          reap their own destruction.
          We have nothing to fear. The Lord is with us, and will sustain
          and nourish his Church and kingdom, as he has done from the
          beginning. He sustained it when it was surrounded by the bowels
          of hell in Warsaw and Nauvoo, in Jackson, Clay, and Caldwell
          counties, when it was small as a mustard seed; and he can sustain
          it here when it is surrounded by the munition of rocks.
          The heathen may rage and imagine a vain thing; but the Lord will
          hold them in derision and guide them as with a bit and a hook in
          their jaws, while his people shall flourish like a watered garden
          upon the mountains. All the promises of God will be fulfilled
          unto us. A little one shall be come a thousand, and a small one a
          strong nation, and the Lord will hasten it in its time. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Heber
          C. Kimball, December 13, 1857
                         Heber C. Kimball, December 13, 1857
                          AUTHORITY OF THE PRIESTHOOD, ETC.
              A Discourse by President H. C. Kimball, delivered in the
                      Great Salt Lake City, December 13, 1857.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          Brother Spencer has given you most excellent doctrine. If the
          Father in heaven should come here and speak to us, he probably
          would not speak anything better to this people than what has been
          said this morning; for he would speak according to your
          capacities. The Gospel of salvation is very simple; but
          everything is constituted therein; everything is comprehended in
          the first principles of the doctrine of Christ. We have preached
          a great many times and used the words of Paul, where he tells us
          to leave the first principles of the doctrine of Christ and go on
          unto perfection. But if we do that we shall slide off the
          foundation, and would have to return and do our first works.
          There is the Father, and the Son, who was given up, that his
          blood might be shed upon Calvary, that our sins might be
          forgiven, on condition that we repent and forsake them.
          "Well," you say, "I believe: what shall I do to be saved?"
          Repent, every one of you, and then go and be buried in water,
          like unto Jesus Christ's burial in the sepulchre, and you shall
          receive the remission of your sins. What next? Receive the laying
          on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost. These are some of the
          first principles of the Gospel.
          Now, can we live our religion unless we are in possession of the
          Holy Ghost all the time? We cannot. First, there is the Father,
          then the Son, and then the Holy Ghost; and then come faith,
          repentance, and Baptism for the remission of sins, and laying on
          of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost.
          Do you not see, then, that it is just as necessary to lay aside
          the any other principle of the Gospel? No man can please the Lord
          God, only as he is dictated by the Holy Ghost; and he will not
          stay with you unless you keep in view the Father and the Son. We
          partake of the sacrament every Sabbath to bear in remembrance the
          Son of God. Then, shall I say, leaving all these principles, go
          on unto perfection? No. They are the fundamental principles of
          our religion, the same as the 26 letters of the English alphabet
          are the roots of the written and printed form of our language.
          Are these principles the celestial law? I know no other. And how
          can you keep the celestial law without the Holy Ghost? You
          cannot. When you partake of the sacrament, you do it in
          remembrance of Jesus Christ, and of the Father, and of the Holy
          Ghost, and in remembrance that you have forsaken your sins and
          been baptised for the remission of them. Some may say, "How long
          will it be before the celestial law will be put into force?"
          Never, until you put it into force and execute it on yourselves.
               I will use a comparison. Here is the English alphabet, that
          you learned when in childhood, so that you were perfectly
          acquainted with the 26 letters: but do you leave that alphabet
          when you go on unto perfection in your education? No. But when
          you have learned those letters, you then learn how to join them
          to make syllables, words, and sentences, and go on till you can
          read the First Reader, and then the Second, and the Third, &c.,
          and all by means of the same letters. You also learn geography
          and history, and rise from one class to another, and from one
          grade of exaltation to another. To gain all your knowledge in
          English literature, you must use the first principles of the
          language all the time. Do I exhort you to leave the first
          principles of the doctrine of Christ? No: but I want you to learn
          them more thoroughly, that you may keep them in view continually.
          There are some who do not understand the alphabet of "Mormonism,"
          and never did. Some that profess to be the smartest men and women
          in our midst know the least about it.
          Brethren, we have all got to learn one thing, and that is, to be
          one with our leader; and this oneness should extend from the
          least member up to the Prophet and Seer--every man standing in
          his order and place, just as the branches of a tree are one with
          the stock and root.
          We will say there are a thousand limbs forming the top of a tree,
          and all have sprung out of one, or out of the body of the tree.
          From the main stock we will say that the twelve limbs shoot out,
          and from them a thousand, which are dependent on the twelve limbs
          for their nourishment, as the twelve limbs are dependent upon the
          stock and roots for theirs. Should any of the twelve limbs be
          rotten in the pith or marrow, all the limbs receiving their sap
          and nourishment therefrom must be affected, more or less, with
          the same disorder, and they also affect the root. If the limbs
          are thrifty, they give to the roots a healthy action to gather
          more abundant nourishment for the whole tree.
          Sometimes you may see a gardener cut off a whole top that is
          snarly and unhealthy, and insert thrifty grafts. You read in the
          Book of Mormon about the master of the vineyard taking thrifty
          grafts and putting them into the wild olive tree in the
          nethermost part of the vineyard, that it might bring forth good
          fruit. Brother Joseph was that man. Moroni, Peter, James, and
          John, and the angels of God came and placed their power upon him,
          and we grew out of the graft; and if we continue in the graft, we
          shall produce the same fruit.
          In Nauvoo, about a year before we started to come here, do you
          not know the Gentiles were cut off entirely from the tree, that
          the new grafts might grow more thriftily in the tree? None can be
          saved unless they are grafted in as we were, by repentance,
          baptism, and the laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy
          Ghost. These are the grafting principles, and you are required to
          live up to them faithfully, going on to perfection.
          My desire and prayer is to teach you in simplicity. Anything that
          cannot be understood is not worth a dime. Like the limbs of a
          thrifty tree moving in unison with the stock, so we should when
          brother Brigham says move this way or that.
          I am talking to the men that hold the Priesthood. And I cannot
          but think that the little boys before me will have that
          Priesthood which we hold, and many of them will see the day when
          they will have power to raise the dead. They will have power to
          do many things we do not have power to do.
          As the leaves and branches of a tree administer to the roots, and
          we are depending upon them for support and strength, so the
          members of this Church are amenable or subject to the President
          of the Church, and, being subject, should administer to him. The
          tree cannot administer to the branches unless they administer to
          the roots.
          According to the philosophy of the day, my blood passes through
          the heart, where it is refined or purified, and from thence it is
          sent back into the body by means of the veins and arteries so
          that every portion of it partakes of the nourishment which the
          blood affords and is impregnated with the principles sent forth
          from the head and stomach. After the refined blood has penetrated
          every part, it returns again to head-quarters to receive a fresh
          supply of nutritious principles. So it is with the sap that
          circulates through the limbs and branches of a tree: every branch
          and leaf becomes impregnated with the principle that is in the
          root. And so it ought to be with the kingdom of God: every member
          of it should partake of the principles of virtue and truth that
          are in the leader of that kingdom, and be as perfectly one with
          Why do we see dead limbs on a tree? Because they refuse to
          receive the nourishment which the root affords. Why do people
          become dead to their own interests and the interests of the
          kingdom of God? Because they refuse to obey the will of God
          through their leaders: the gate of communication is shut down
          between them and the source of their life and strength in the way
          of life and salvation.
          Can a child enjoy the Spirit of God who refuses to obey his
          father, who is a man of God? No. He partakes of the spirit of
          apostacy, which is the spirit of death. I will ask you women of
          good understanding. Did you ever disobey your husband and live in
          rebellion to him, but what you felt like the Devil? I have heard
          you say you never did. My wives acknowledge they cannot enjoy the
          enlivening Spirit of God when they rebel against my counsel; but
          their minds are as dark as Egypt. Why? Because I design to rule
          in righteousness.
          The spirit of disobedience is the spirit of apostacy; and if you
          do not look out, it will upset you, and you will go overboard
          before you are aware of it. Every branch should be interested for
          the root from whence it springs; for if the root perishes, the
          branch must perish also.
          I hope you understand my meaning in the figures I have used. But
          there are many people here more ignorant than our little boys of
          five and six years of age. If they were not ignorant, they would
          not take the course they do. Do I allow my little boys to touch a
          thing that belongs to me? Not without my sanction. Have you a
          right to interfere with the things of God? No--not without the
          consent of the man that presides over you. Has my wife a right to
          meddle with anything that belongs to me? Not without my consent;
          and over that which I have committed unto her she is a
          stewardess. Have I a right to call her to an account for what I
          have committed to her, to see whether she has taken good care of
          it? I have. There is not a thing on this earth that is given to
          us of God that is to be ours independently of him, and never will
          be, until we prove ourselves worthy.
          There is a comparison in the Bible where it speaks of committing
          talents to men and of calling them to account. "I visited," said
          the Lord, "one this year and another next year, until I visited
          the last one, and I reckoned with them and called them to an
          account of that which I had ceded up to them." It is just so with
          If I cede up any power to one of my boys, for instance, saying,
          Here is a horse, Heber, for you to use; I require you to take
          good care of him, and not abuse him. Why? Because I am going to
          call him back. Supposing the horse is not as good as when I gave
          it to him, then Heber is in debt to his father, and has to pay
          We receive the Priesthood and power and authority. If we make a
          bad use of that Priesthood, do you not see that the day will come
          when God will reckon with us, and he will take it from us and
          give it to those who will make better use of it. My advise to my
          brethren it to rise up, from this time forth, and let your light
          shine, that others may see your good works and be led to glorify
          How holy men ought to be who hold the authority of the
          Priesthood? And again, how pure and angelic females ought to be
          who are sent here to bear the souls of men? If you pollute those
          souls and bodies, God will call you to an account for it.
          And these little boys, I want them to honour their calling. Here
          are lots of them. Have they the Priesthood on them? Yes. Have
          they all been ordained? Not directly; but their fathers have
          been, and that ordination tells on their seed after them. They
          are the legal hears to the Priesthood of God, without an
          ordination. They receive it from their fathers; and when they
          were blessed, their seed was blessed in their loins, like
          Abraham's and when that seed is committed to an angelic woman,
          she is accountable whether she degenerates that seed or not. It
          is for her to train up that child, and nourish it, and cherish
          it, and restore it to the Father as pure as it was when she
          received it.
          If you have the Priesthood, you are in the same condition that I
          am. These things are serious to me; they are essential to me and
          to this people. After receiving the Priesthood, when a person
          receives his endowment, he is an heir to the Priesthood--an heir
          of God, and a joint-heir with Jesus Christ; that is, he has
          commenced his heirship.
          The Father waited until the meridian of time--that is, till the
          time was half up, before he came on the earth and begat in the
          flesh the Son of God, who was to be our Saviour. Was every woman
          qualified to raise that child? No. You will find that Mary was of
          the Royal Priesthood, which is after the order of God; and he was
          particular who raised that child, that it might be trained
          according to his dictation. Should not we be cautious? I tell you
          we ought, and not fool and play with the things of God as a cat
          would with a mouse.
          Many of you are trifling with your own existence--with your own
          salvation--not with mine. Brother Brigham, myself, brother
          Daniel, and the Twelve Apostles cannot grow or increase, only in
          proportion as the limbs and branches of this Priesthood and the
          whole tree increase. If it is a thrifty top, then the roots
          partake of that thriftiness, and they all grow together. That is
          what makes us take a course to cut off the dead limbs.
          Jesus said to his disciples, "Ye are the salt of the earth; and
          if the salt loses its saving principle, it is then good for
          nothing but to be cast out." Instead of reading it just as it is,
          almost all of you read it just as it is not. Jesus meant to say,
          "If you have lost the saving principles, you Twelve Apostles, and
          you that believe in my servants the Twelve, you shall be like
          unto the salt that has lost its saving principles: it is
          henceforth good for nothing but to be cast out and trodden under
          foot of men." Judas lost that saving principle, and they took him
          and killed him. It is said in the Bible that his bowels gushed
          out; but they actually kicked him until his bowels came out.
          "I will suffer my bowels to be taken out before I will forfeit
          the covenant I have made with Him and my brethren." Do you
          understand me? Judas was like salt that had lost its saving
          principles--good for nothing but to be cast out and trodden under
          foot of men. It is just so with you men and women, if you do not
          honour your callings and cultivate the principles you have
          received. It is so with you, ye Elders of Israel, when you
          forfeit your covenants.
          Brethren and sisters, as the Lord liveth, and as we live and
          exist in these mountains, let me tell you the world is ripe, and
          there are no saving principles within them, with a very few
          exceptions; and they will gather out, and the rest of mankind are
          ready for destruction, for they will have no salt to save them. I
          know the day is right at hand when men will forfeit their
          Priesthood and turn against us and against the covenants they
          have made, and they will be destroyed as Judas was.
          Ye Elders, Apostles, Seventies, High Priests, Bishops, Priests,
          Teachers, and Deacons, never be guilty of that which you have
          been guilty of once before. If it were not for your ignorance,
          you would have been cut off from the earth; but, in consequence
          of your ignorance, I feel as though God would forgive you, if you
          will never do it again. But if you do it again, your time for
          repentance is past, and you do not again get pardon.
          I do feel bad to think that men will enter into the new and
          everlasting covenant of our God, and then defile themselves with
          uncleanness. Is there a woman in this city that could have
          committed the sin of debauchery, if there had been no person to
          debauch her? No. Who is guilty? The man, who should have the
          saving principles of God Almighty in him; and he is the man who
          must pay the debt.
          Again: If the woman would never consent, the man could not
          accomplish his vile purpose. You have been taught different all
          the day long. You have been taught from your mother's womb that
          these things are wrong. Would the Devil have power to make you
          tell a lie, if you did not yield to him? No. When you consent to
          it, the Devil then has seduced you, debauched you, just as much
          as a man goes to work and debauches a woman after she has
          consented to him. We are agents to refuse or to accept. Who is
          the most to blame? The man holding the Priesthood of God.
          I talk about these things because I am led so to do. They may be
          considered small things, but they are the things that destroy
          this people--that is, all that will be destroyed. You can lose
          your saving principles as much as salt or sugar can. Sugar can be
          placed in a state that it will become sour--have no sweetness
          about it; and bread will become sour through the power of leaven
          put into it; and if the leaven was not sour, it could not sour
          the bread. When sugar becomes sour, it has lost the saving
          principles of sugar, just the same as salt. Be cautious that you
          do not receive the filthy leaven. Stop your tattling, your lying,
          and mischief-making. You never saw persons that are trotting from
          house to house but what are apt to be tattlers, unless they are
          ordained and set apart to visit. You never saw a woman that is
          continually parading the streets but what was a tattler. Her face
          may be as smooth as an onion; but the beauty of a woman is in the
          spirit of righteousness she cherishes.
          You Elders of Israel, have you not entered into covenant that you
          never would betray one another? And you mothers of Israel, have
          you not entered into covenant not to speak against each other, or
          run about the neighbourhood and talk about this one and that one,
          and about their husbands? Do you not despise such a woman as
          that? Yes, you do; and so do I, and so does every good man and
          angel, and so does Jesus Christ. He has told you not to do it.
          I want you to understand that you make covenants with God, and
          not with us. We were present and committed those covenants to
          you, and you made them with God, and we were witnesses. When you
          got your endowments, did you not make a covenant not to speak
          against the anointed? And every woman that received this
          ordinance made a covenant with her husband that she would be true
          and faithful to him, be a guardian angel to him, and watch over
          his pillow by night and by day, and be true to her God and to the
          I told you the other Sunday that I never made a practice of going
          to my President and speaking against any one. I am cautious how I
          take a course to tell him this, that, and the other; for, if I am
          a man of truth, he is bound to believe me. Are there men that
          will come to me and try to injure somebody? Yes. Is it right,
          when you have sworn not to do it?
          In Kirtland, Jared Carter, Dr. Cowdery, and others tried to ruin
          the Twelve in the eyes of Joseph. The very first mission the
          Twelve took, we went forth like men of God and travelled to the
          East and back again, without purse or scrip, and held Conferences
          through all the New England States, and exhorted and taught the
          people to go to Jackson County and purchase that land; and those
          men so prejudiced the mind of the First Presidency that two of
          the Twelve were suspended. But there were enough left to form a
          Quorum and do business.
          Jared Carter, Dr. Cowdery, and others fell through taking that
          course. They tried to run in between the Twelve and Joseph, and
          they stepped between the bucklers of the Almighty. Had they a
          right to do it? No. Have I a right although I am brother
          Brigham's First Counsellor, and have been ever since he was the
          President of the Twelve,--have I a right to prejudice his mind
          against Daniel? No. I have sworn not to before God. Or have I a
          right to prejudice his mind against the Twelve? No. Because I am
          sworn not to, by the most sacred covenants that man can make.
          Have the twelve a right to step in and prejudice the First
          Presidency against the Seventies? No. If there is a difficulty,
          it is for the Twelve to settle it, and never tell it and destroy
          the head against the feet, nor the arm against the eye.
          And here some men and women run from Dan to Beersheba breaking
          their covenants. If I could have my will, they never should step
          into the Endowment Room again and administer in sacred things,
          when they take this course. And some women, who think they know
          everything, go home and abuse their husbands and raise the devil
          in a man's family.
          I have no allusion to the righteous, the good, the wholesome,
          pure, and virtuous, but to those it belongs to. What are my
          feelings? They are--God bless the pure, the righteous, the salt
          that has not lost its savour.
          I have not said anything about our enemies. I care nothing about
          A single man or woman in this kingdom may do a great deal of
          harm, if they are so inclined. If you put up a barrel of good,
          sweet meat and a little piece of tainted meat, not larger that a
          peach, in the center of it, it will not be three months before
          the whole barrel of meat will be spoiled, if you do not clean out
          the lump of bad meat that has lost its saving principles. So
          wicked men and women in a Ward or in a Quorum can do much
          mischief. The inoculate death in the community.
          Paul, in speaking of the tongue says, "It sets on fire the whole
          course of nature." It inoculates hell into the people. A sister
          comes into your house, and you think she is almost an angel, she
          can smile so sweetly. Do you not know that the Devil can smile
          just as well as a Saint? You cannot know persons only as they are
          God bless you and this whole people in the east, west, south, and
          north. My prayer is--God bless these valleys, and the mountains,
          and the fountains of life in them.
          How good it is to reflect that the day has come in which we have
          declared our independence. This we have done because the Lord God
          has said it to his servant Brigham. We are independent of those
          troops and those poor, miserable, ungodly scoundrels that they
          call civil officers. What civility, to come here to preside over
          us with 2,000 troops? With them it is, "God damn the Mormons--God
          damn Brigham Young. We will kill him and Heber C. Kimball, and we
          will seduce and debauch every woman in the City of Salt Lake."
          The Lord has said to brother Brigham, "Say to them, before all
          Israel, in my name, They cannot come in here."
          I am glad and can shout, Hallelujah! Praise be to the name of our
          God! And peace be to that man or woman that steps forward and
          sustains the weight in this operation. And that man or woman who
          revolts against the Priesthood of God and takes the opposite
          course, may God Almighty curse them, that they may go to hell,
          where they belong. These are my feelings.
          I am thankful this is a goodly land. I never was in a better. I
          appreciate it, and I appreciate these mountains and valleys, and
          the red men of the forest. May God bless them, and let the old
          Nephite Prophets and Patriarchs and servants of God stir them up
          and turn their hearts to the house of Israel in these Valleys,
          and he will do it; and the United States cannot buy them. God
          Almighty has got them by the bit. What?--Israel? Yes. Although
          they are as a wild horse, he can lead them the same as you can a
          tame one.
          We shall prosper; we shall prevail with all those who cleave to
          the Church and kingdom of God; only do as you are told, and you
          need not trouble. See how the Lord is watering the earth. It will
          be wet down three or four feet, and he will continue to do it,
          and it will be like a pool of living water; and he will cause the
          earth to produce, and we shall be blessed, and God will sustain
          us; and he will sustain those that sustain his people.
          Instead of sending out two, three, or five thousand men, let us
          pick out a thousand, and they will stand against the United
          States. If God is with us, who can prevail against us? Why do not
          the women go to work and make up hats and caps for their
          husbands, and help them, and not suffer them to spend three
          dollars for a had for a child three years' old? Let us make our
          own knives and forks, and everything else that we use; and let
          every man be diligent at home or in his shop about his
          Brother Brigham says the soldiers cannot come here. Then we
          should say the same. He says they will be confused. Let us all
          pray that they may. Be kind to each other, and take good care of
          everything in your possession. Do not waste anything, nor abuse
          your horses. A man that is abusive to his animal is apt to be the
          same to his wife or child. There is nothing in the Spirit of love
          that will kill or destroy unnecessarily-- nothing that will lie
          or oppress, for that comes from the spirit of destruction.
          The spirit of hypocrisy professes to be my friend to-day, and
          then tomorrow will go and speak against me. This should not be
          among us. Let us go to from this time henceforth and be one, and
          God will bless us. When you go visiting your neighbours, preach
          these things to them, and speak the truth continually, and lie
          I go visiting sometimes. I was out on a visit yesterday. You
          invite me to visit and talk; but half the family will go to
          cooking the night before, and cook all day until supper time, and
          then they are too full to talk or hear, and we start home before
          the rest of the family has anything to eat; and they cook up
          everything they have, or expect to have for a year to come,
          figuratively speaking. I would rather have a piece of bread and
          go into the kanyon with one or two of the brethren and talk about
          the things of God.
          Last Monday, the Congress of the United Stated commenced its
          session, and no doubt they will remember us. I want you should
          pray for them. Pray for the President of the United States; pray
          for the Senate and the House of Representatives; pray for the
          Speakers of each house, and pray for all men in authority,
          especially those who are opposed to Israel and who are planning
          for our destruction. I want you to pray good prayers for them,
          that they may fall into the dilemma they want to put us in. You
          need not pray anything more than that; for, I swear to you, they
          will get a bellyfull.
          The members of the Legislature here will assemble to-morrow
          morning, at ten o'clock, with our Governor at our head. It is the
          best legislative body there is upon the face of the earth,
          because they hold the Priesthood, and there is no person there
          only those who hold it--the leading men of Israel. Pray for that
          Assembly. There are forty-nine men of us--the representatives of
          this whole Territory, to make laws for the government and
          protection of the people. But when those men have made a law, our
          Governor can veto it in a moment. He is the head of the
          department to make laws to protect, sustain, and uphold the
          kingdom of God in all the world. If a law is made to protect me,
          it equally protects you and your wife and children. Now, I want
          to know if there is a man or woman here who is not interested in
          that? I mention this that you may pray that they may make laws
          such as the Lord would approve, if he was here himself. Those who
          feel in favour that our Governor continue, and uphold and sustain
          him, with the Legislature and everything else that is good, rise
          up on your feet.
          [The whole congregation arose.]
          God bless you, and bless our Governor, with everything connected
          to him. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Heber
          C. Kimball, December 20, 1857
                         Heber C. Kimball, December 20, 1857
           Remarks by President Heber C. Kimball, made in the Tabernacle,
             Great Salt Lake City, Sunday Afternoon, December 20, 1857.
                              Reported by Leo Hawkins.
          We have had some most excellent instructions from brother Wells;
          and inasmuch as this people take heed and then practice them, we,
          of all people now upon the face of this earth, or that ever were
          upon the earth, are the greatest and most blessed, or shall be.
          As he said, it is for each of us to live our religion
          individually. I cannot live your religion; I cannot perform your
          services; I cannot pray--that is, I cannot perform your prayers.
          I can pray for you, but I cannot perform your duties: it is
          impossible for me to do that. It is just as impossible for me to
          do that as to go to your separate houses--say some three or four
          thousand houses, and get your breakfasts for you, and attend to
          other domestic duties that you should perform each one for
          yourselves, individually and collectively. Do you not see that
          that would cause me to be much more active than any man could be
          in the flesh?
          I merely bring this up as an illustration. I cannot live you
          religion any more than I can go to your houses and get your
          breakfasts and then eat them for you. One of those things is just
          as nonsensical to me as the other. I merely bring that up as a
          comparison, and not for the purpose of creating laughter or
          levity. The reason I am led to refer to some of the most simple
          ideas is, that I may be able to come at the capacity of the most
          simple person, and then I am sure that all above that can
          We are here in the mountains a thousand miles from the Christian
          world--that is the portion of the Christian world that we have
          come from, even the United States. I suppose there are as many as
          one or two hundred, and perhaps three hundred different Christian
          denominations; and every one of them differs, and every one of
          them is at variance one with the other; and every one of them,
          although they are at variance with one another, were all agreed
          in killing or in consenting to the death of Joseph Smith, either
          directly or indirectly.
          I do not suppose there are any of the clergy of the present day,
          though there may be a few score, but what rejoiced the moment
          they heard that Joseph Smith's blood was shed. "Thank God," said
          they, "that we are liberated from that impostor, Joe Smith, who
          has caused us so much trouble and alarm." Thank God, I say, that
          we are delivered from that Christian nation. Deliver me from
          their Christianity and from them.
          It is the priests of the day who incite the people to anger
          against us, and the men that stand in authority are tied up in
          their feelings on account of the priests of the day; and of all
          the ungodly beings that God ever made, the priests of the present
          day are the most ungodly, and I know it: and they are the
          mainspring of all the mischief pertaining to this earth, as they
          are under the influence of the Devil; and, secondly, the editors,
          lawyers, and doctors, as they are under the influence of the
          priests. Thank the Lord God that we are a thousand miles from any
          of them and all of them. They cannot get here with steamboats,
          nor with ships, or with railroads, nor with lightning-rods: but
          we have a lightning-rod or electric power that gives us
          intelligence. Our President knows their acts, and he can foresee
          future things, and he knows their evil designs; and he will have
          greater foreknowledge from this time forth, if this people will
          concentrate their faith and exertions; and if they do not, he
          will; and he will forestall and thwart them, and they can never
          trouble us to any great effect. Why? Because we are calculating
          to do right.
          Am I not thankful that we are here in the tops of the mountains,
          a thousand miles from everybody, right in the centre of America,
          in the chambers of the Lord? And God has led us here. They have
          killed Joseph, Hyrum, David, and Parley, four of the Prophets and
          Apostles; and they have killed and destroyed thousands of men,
          women, and children; and they have rejoiced at it--they have
          exulted at it--the priests in the pulpit and the whole nation.
          Well, who cares? I will tell you one thing, brethren: If this
          people will live and do as they are told, I do not care what
          course they take,--I do not care how many ditches they dig, nor
          how many snares they lay,--as the Lord God liveth, our enemies
          shall fall into the snares they prepare for us.
          [The congregation responded--"Amen."]
          And it shall be visible to this people--as visible to them as it
          is that the sun ever sets out of our sight or ever rises again,
          or the water runs or grass grows; and they shall be a standing
          miracle before this people, from this time forth.
          Now, I will prove these things upon natural principles. This
          kingdom, this Church, this People are his servants. Our Governor
          is God's servant, and he will stand, and we never shall be ruled
          over by any of them again--never, no never, while we live
          faithful and keep the commandments of God and do as we are told,
          every man, woman, and child.
          Arise and shine, for the light and glory of God is on you, if you
          will with us, and it is around us, and it is about us. What shall
          we do? Sit down now and begin to cry, this man saying--"I have
          got no hat, no cap, no pantaloons, no shirt, nor garments?" Sit
          down and cry about it sister, because you have not a dress nor
          bonnet, and many other things? Sit down and cry about it!
          If you had taken a judicious course with your cotton yarn, and,
          instead of making rag carpets, had made some shirts and garments,
          it would have been to your interest; and if, instead of putting
          your wool into carpets, you had put it into dresses and blankets,
          it would have been to your interest. You have used much of your
          yarn in making carpets, and I would not give shucks for the whole
          of them.
          I can tell you how to make a skirt or a quilt, You know you all
          have to have a bed-quilt, puckered up into a quilt. Take your
          rags--the little square pieces, oblong pieces, and all other
          kinds of shapes, and sew them together until you get enough to
          make both sides, the same as you would a quilt, and them take the
          cotton that was in the old one and put it into the new one,
          instead of throwing it away. Would it not look well? I will tell
          you it would look like Joseph's coat.
          You need not laugh about it: it was no dishonour to him. They put
          it on him, thinking, probably, that is was a disgrace to him; but
          it was not: it was only fulfilling the word which was predicted
          of him. Would it be a disgrace to you? No. That woman who will
          take the course honours herself, her husband, and this people,
          and sets an example that is worthy of imitation.
          Take those pieces and keep at work until you make a full garment
          of them, and then let us go to work as a people, as far as we
          have it in our power, to raise sheep, instead of killing and
          destroying them. Raise flax. I have not heard much of this flax
          raising. There has been a great deal of flax raised to procure
          seed to make linseed oil, but there has been none made; and there
          is, if it has not been disposed of, some three or four hundred
          bushels of flax seed in the Tithing Store. I have never heard of
          much being raised for any other purpose but for the seed. Perhaps
          some persons have dressed a little, but I have not heard much
          about it.
          Brother Lorin Farr came up to see me a few evenings ago, and he
          said he had raised a crop of flax. It was not thought to be much;
          but he went to work with his men and gathered it and rotted it,
          and he has dressed it, and has got over one hundred pounds of
          beautiful flax, as good flax as he ever knew there.
          How much will that hundred pounds of flax make when dressed? It
          will make about 125 yards of good cloth. A pound will make more
          than a yard.
          After the flax is dressed and swingled, a woman takes it and
          hetchels it, and takes out the coarsest of the tow; then she
          hetchels it again, and gets another quality, not quite so coarse;
          then she hetchels it the third time, and that is fine. She will
          take that and make fine, beautiful linen, nice enough for any man
          to wear for the bosom of his shirt; and the rest she makes into
          table-cloths, towels, shirts, and good dresses, handsome enough
          for any lady.
          When I married my wife, she was a spinner of both wool and flax,
          and wore woollen dresses for the winter and linen for summer, and
          never put on a calico dress except to go to meeting, nor fine
          shoes, She would wear her coarse shoes until she got to the
          meeting-house, and then she would change her shoes.
          You may laugh at it, but I have seen it hundreds of times with as
          good women as you have got and as good women as ever lived. That
          is novel to a great many people, but I have seen these things.
          I am telling some of these simple things, if you have a mind to
          call them so; or you may call them simple things that are seen in
          the latter days, that no person knows anything about--mysteries.
          That is a mystery that I have seen with my own eyes, and so have
          many who are in this congregation.
          Women would come from Victor, a distance of three miles, to the
          town of Meridon, New York, where I lived; and I have seen them
          walk barefooted until they came near where I lived, and then they
          would put on their white stockings and shoes to go into meeting;
          and when they came out of meeting and had passed off a little out
          of sight, they would pull off their shoes and stockings and go
          home barefooted, for the purpose of saving their fine shoes and
          the stockings which they had spun and knit out of flax. I am
          telling what I have seen and what I know.
          A good many women are now in this Church who were brought up in
          that manner, and never were allowed to go to extravagance as
          people do now in many things.
          Take a course to accumulate; return back, in regard to these
          matters, as it was in the beginning of our lives, to make our own
          clothing, our own shoes, and our own leather, and raise our own
          peaches and apples, cattle and horses, and everything else.
          Now, do I not take a course to do this? I have not raised an flax
          yet, but I am going to try it the coming year, if I can find a
          man who understands it. Perhaps my gardener knows how to break
          flax; and I have three wives who know how to spin it, and they
          can teach the rest.
          I am going to have a home manufacturing school in my family, and
          I am going to take those who understand this branch of business
          to teach the rest; and if there is one that is a dressmaker I
          will have her teach the rest to make their own dresses, and knit
          their own stockings, and make their own caps and bonnets, and
          make the clothes for their own children, and let the beauty
          thereof be the workmanship of their own hand, according to the
          design God gave us; and if we take that course as a people upon
          the earth, and we shall eventually be a free people, an
          independent people.
          I will tell you the day of our separation has come, and we are a
          free and an independent people, isolated a thousand miles from
          the Christian nation; and thanks be to our God for ever. And we
          are the people of God, and this is the dwelling of King Emmanuel,
          in these mountains, and he will gather all nations unto us--those
          that will be gathered; and those who will not, he will compel
          The day has come when the people have go to bow the knee to God
          and pay tribute to him, every man and woman on this earth.
          In regard to these matters, we should commence at home in our own
          families, by our own firesides. Let the improvement commence
          there, and then increase. It will not be long before we shall be
          amalgamated into one spirit. These are my feelings.
          Brother Hunter, our presiding Bishop, has to deal with these
          matters--home manufactures; for, in reality, it pertains to the
          calling of Bishops to deal in temporal affairs, to enable us to
          become an independent nation.
          I am satisfied that we shall have a good season for crops the
          coming year, if we are faithful. But it will depend on our
          goodness, faithfulness, and oneness. I have told you a great many
          times that our faithfulness and goodness and oneness would have
          an effect upon the crops. It will have an effect upon our stock,
          and upon the earth, the air, the mountains, the valleys; and that
          is not all: it will extend to the uttermost parts of the earth.
          There is not a branch that belongs to this kingdom but will feel
          the power. I know that by experience, by knowledge, and by
          You cannot now find an Elder among the nations, even one who is
          in the uttermost parts of the earth, if he could speak, but what
          would say, "Brother Brigham, do you want me to come home?" He has
          not received the word directly from him, and will stick and hang
          until he gets the word; but he feel as though he wanted to come
          home. They feel it to the ends of the earth.
          How does the earth feel, when righteous men and women are walking
          upon it, ploughing it, hoeing it, watering it, blessing it? I
          will tell you the earth feels it, and every part of the earth
          that is attached to it. It has power in it. Let us go to work and
          be an independent people.
          Am I glad that the mountain is between us and the merchants? Yes,
          I am glad of it; for as long as we can get those stores to come
          in here, we shall buy those rotten goods.
          I will tell you some facts. If these things that I have told you
          are facts, I will tell you some more. I have, in this valley,
          bought individuals of my own family a dress every month in the
          year, and at the last winding-up scene they told me they had not
          a dress that was fit to wear. They would not last hardly as long
          as you were making them, the things we buy in the stores are so
          rotten. They have rotted on the shelves, and they have bought
          them for about one-quarter their worth, and put a price on them
          that should have been if they had been good articles. I know it
          by my own experience.
          How long will a good linen dress last you? Did any of you ever
          wear one? We never saw anything else, much, worn in the country,
          in the summer season, on a farming country. I never had a
          broadcloth garment, that I recollect, till after I became a
          member of this Church. I wore woollen home-made in the winter, of
          our own make, that my mother and sister spun; and in the summer I
          wore tow pantaloons and a tow frock.
          I remember very well when I had the first fine shirt. I went and
          bought six yards to make me two shirts, just pervious to my
          getting me a wife, and my sister Abigail made it up. Take a good
          linen dress, and it will last a good and a careful woman two
          years, if not three; and then you may take a good woollen dress
          and put it upon a good woman, an honest woman, a clean woman, and
          a careful woman, and it will last her five year--I mean in the
          season of it. I presume there are hundreds of women here that
          would rise up and say, "That's a fact."
          Well, as brother Lorenzo was speaking last Sunday, (I put it into
          his mouth when he was talking about brother Brigham's family and
          mine.) I do not believe there are many families in these valleys
          that are more industrious at home than our families are. Take
          them in general, I do not believe there are many families in
          these mountains that make as many yards of homespun as they do.
          Our women have got, almost universally, two good woollen dresses
          apiece. I know that those two woollen dresses will wear out
          thirty calico dresses such as we buy here.
          Just see what brother Brigham's family has done. I am going to
          talk about our families. They have got good dresses which we have
          purchased for them. Is it right for them to wear them? Yes; they
          are just as worthy to wear them as any other women in this town.
          I say, Wear them out. Wear you bonnets and everything else, and
          make them last just as long as you can, and take good care of
          your domestic things, flannel, and everything else.
          In our city there are a great many poor women--I am aware of
          that; and they will be eternally poor, for they waste everything
          they can get hold of; and they are nasty and filthy, for I see
          them dragging their dresses behind them; and though they are so
          poor that they cannot get up in the morning and wash their faces
          and hands before breakfast, yet they have got about eighteen or
          twenty inches of their dresses dragging in the mud. Now, you
          look, when you go out of this meeting, and see if you do not see
          several of them.
          I am now talking about home manufactures. But if that is home
          manufacturing, I do not want that part. I am going to get rid of
          that. I cannot believe in it. I was speaking to a lady, the other
          day, about long dresses, and said she, "That's the fashion Queen
          Victoria established."
          Said I, What has Queen Victoria to do over here? She had better
          get religion before she comes to set an example for our ladies,
          dragging their dresses in the mud. Well, they said she
          established it because she had such a big, squatty foot. You make
          a great deal worse squat than she does, dragging your clothes
          through the mud. Brother Lorenzo spoke of it, and I told him it
          belonged to the Bishop. It was his duty to lecture on this point.
          My advice to you is, when you go home, tuck up that dress or cut
          it off.
          I remarked to brother Lorenzo, a few days ago, when it was
          tremendously muddy, and a woman was walking through the mud, with
          her dress whopping over, and they stretching out, and then
          whopping over on the other side. You follow that woman home, and
          you will find that she has muddied her foot clear up to her legs.
          I am talking about the ridiculousness of such things; and if I
          can get you so ashamed that you will not come to meeting again
          with such long dresses, I shall be glad.
          I can recollect, when I was a young man, I used to the with the
          ladies; and when they came to a mud-hole, they would catch up
          their dresses and trip over. I like to see it. Say I, That is a
          descent woman; she is nice and clean.
          Let us go to work and do as we are told. I will do it, and the
          Lord helps me. I shall go to with my might and begin to
          accumulate my own living, by the help of the Lord God and my
          brethren. And will this whole people do likewise, raise their own
          grain, their potatoes, and build good houses, and make themselves
          We shall live in peace, if we will only do right and take this
          course. And if we do not take it and have to go into the
          mountains, we have got to make our own clothing. I can take a
          little wheel on by back and a bundle of flax under my arms, and
          we can drive our sheep into the mountains, and my women can get
          into a tent and go to spinning. How nice that would look--sitting
          in the door of the tent, spinning. It would look a great deal
          better than it does to see them taking a course to bring distress
          upon this people, depending on the world for their rotten stuffs.
          God bless you, brethren. God bless you, sisters, and make you
          happy and comfortable in your habitations, and your habitations
          all little heavens, and be in heaven at home and abroad; and let
          every one be diligent in doing good. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Wilford
          Woodruff, December 27, 1857
                         Wilford Woodruff, December 27, 1857
                            BLESSINGS OF THE SAINTS, ETC.
               A Discourse by Elder Wilford Woodruff, delivered in the
              Great Salt Lake City, Sunday Morning, December 27, 1857.
                               Reported by J. V. Long.
          It seems to fall to my lot to occupy a few moments this morning;
          and I feel to say that this is a blessed place, and that this is
          a blessed people, and that they are partaking of a great many
          blessed things.
          If the Latter-day Saints could prize and comprehend the blessings
          that are given unto them, and if our minds were enlightened
          continually by the Holy Spirit, we should feel ourselves blest
          and comprehend that we are made partakers of the greatest
          blessings which the Lord imparts unto the children of men--I may
          say far greater than the rest of our fellow-creatures who now
          inhabit this earth.
          The Lord says, Whosoever are quickened by a portion of the
          celestial spirit and abide a celestial law, they shall inherit a
          celestial glory; whosoever are quickened by a terrestrial spirit
          shall inherit a terrestrial glory. I realize this, and consider
          that the Lord has revealed unto us the celestial law; that is, he
          has given unto us the fulness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and
          has given us a knowledge of the principles of eternal life. The
          Lord reveals truth unto the children of men; by which truth we
          are to be qualified and prepared for exaltation. Truth has been
          presented in its simplicity, so that it might be comprehended by
          the sons of men.
          As I reflect this morning upon the condition of the human family,
          and consider how differently we are situated from the masses of
          mankind, I do feel that we ought to be grateful to our great
          Benefactor. There are millions of the human family who assemble
          in various houses, in cathedrals, churches and chapels for the
          purpose of worshipping God; but is there one of those numerous
          congregations who come together with an understanding of the
          truth, except there be some Latter-day Saint Elder who is called
          to preach to the inhabitants of the earth? Do they come together
          understanding the principles of the same Gospel, the same plan of
          salvation, the Gospel of Jesus Christ, in a way and manner to
          make them one?
          Now, God could not make a people one with so many kinds of faith
          and such a multiplicity of doctrines, diametrically opposed to
          each other, as exist in the world. But we are a blessed people:
          we have the principles of union and oneness with us; and by
          carrying them out, they bind us together and make us one.
          It is upon this principle that the Latter-day Saints are blest
          and made free. We are delivered in a great measure from those
          troubles and perplexities, false doctrines, the darkness, the
          error, and superstition by which our minds have been beclouded,
          until the light was made manifest unto the children of men that
          they were in darkness; for this was the case with us all. Until
          the light came, we were grovelling in the dark, in a great
          measure. Though we might be honest, and we might be actuated by
          the best and holiest feelings, yet, until the fulness of the
          Gospel was revealed, the world were like the blind groping for
          the wall. We had no Apostles--no Prophets; we had no inspired men
          to rise up and tell us what to do to be saved; and we had to go
          through with all that trouble, misery, and darkness to which the
          children of men are subject while living under false doctrines,
          false traditions, and false teachers.
          I have frequently remarked in my life, and I was sincere in the
          sentiment in saying that I would rather take a six months' tour
          in the Penitentiary than to go through with a six months'
          conviction and conversion in the sectarian world, according to
          their order of doing business. Let any man go through the ordeal
          of six months' conviction and conversion in the Presbyterian
          Church, and then be made acquainted with the true plan of
          salvation, and he will feel about as I do upon the subject.
          Read the history of any man, and read his experience in the
          religious world, and you will find that it is worse, as far as
          the affliction of the soul is concerned, than as long a time in
          the Penitentiary. We will take a Presbyterian revival. A man is
          called by the sectarian excitement to get religion. He goes to
          the clergy--I do not care whether it is in a synod or in any
          other place; but suppose that he has a great desire to seek after
          the plan and principles of salvation, and he applies to the
          clergy, they will tell him like this--You must surrender yourself
          to the Lord. He goes to work to pray and fast, and he is faithful
          and diligent in trying to give his heart to the Lord; but he is
          still in trouble, and he goes to the priest and informs him of
          his situation; and the priest tells him all the time--You must
          give you heart unto God; you must be willing to be damned and to
          suffer all things for the sake of Christ. The minister still
          pleads with him to submit himself to God; but he does not tell
          him the first step which he ought to take in order to have his
          sins forgiven and obtain salvation, but tells him continually
          that he must do it--that he must give his heart to God. The
          result is that the man mourns and weeps, and by-and-by he thinks
          it is the worst sin that he can commit to pray when going through
          these feelings and this trial.
          I have read the history of many strong-minded men; and besides
          this, I know my own history and experience: I know the way the
          children of men suffer in attempting to give their hearts unto
          God; and, as I have said, as far as the feelings of the children
          of men are concerned, it would not be grieving their feelings any
          more in bearing the reproach of their neighbours to be sent to
          prison for crime, than some men have endured in getting religion.
          What is the reason of all this? It is because they have not the
          same law--because there is not any man inspired to rise up and
          teach them the way to be saved--no Apostle to teach the Gospel of
          Jesus Christ.
          Now, in the midst of these trials and tribulations, many of you
          can remember how many nights and days you have spent in suffering
          and distress, trying to give your hearts to God. And when you
          have been called into the circle of ministers, have they not
          called upon you again and again to come to the anxious bench and
          get religion? I can well remember it, although I never joined any
          church at all until I joined the Latter-day Saints; but yet I
          attended meetings, and I have been called upon day after day and
          night after night to give my heart to God, so much so that I
          would get mad to be told to do a thing so many times that I was
          all the time trying to do; for I had a desire to do that which
          was right, but did not know how to take the first step; and those
          who taught could not tell me how.
          Now, had there been an Apostle there to have said, "Go and
          repent, be baptised for the remission of your sins, and then I
          will lay my hands upon you that you may receive the Holy Ghost,
          which will lead and guide you into all truth; it will enlighten
          you mind in relation to the principles of eternal life, and it
          will show you things past, present, and to come;" how easy this
          would have been, providing a man inspired of God had been there.
          In relation to these things, this people are truly blest; but the
          world are in worse darkness than they were before Joseph Smith
          received revelation from heaven. They have gone into thicker
          darkness, for the Gospel has been offered to the children of
          men--to the most of the Christian nations during the last
          twenty-five years, and in a great measure they have rejected it;
          but before the light came to them they did not know what to do,
          for the world were bound up in the ignorance, darkness, and by
          false traditions, false principles, and false teachers who gave
          unto the children of men their erroneous opinions for doctrines
          of salvation.
          We are liberated from these things: the cloud of darkness is
          taken from us, and the light of eternal truth has begun to shine
          upon our minds.
          Some of this assembly have embraced this Gospel in foreign
          countries, and many of us in this our native land; and now we
          have all come together to hear preaching, exhortation, and
          receive instruction in the things of God, and we have come
          expecting to hear the truth; and in this we have not been
          disappointed, for we do hear the truth from this stand. We have
          been taught the pure principles of virtue and righteousness by
          the servants of God.
          The knowledge we have received has taken from us those troubles
          of mind and soul and those distressing feelings which were
          occasioned by those false doctrines and traditions that were
          implanted in our minds in early life, and that have caused us to
          much suffering in the days that are gone. Then, I say, it is a
          great blessing that God has given unto us the celestial law--the
          principles of the Gospel that will lead to celestial glory and
          eternal lives.
          The Lord has for years past been continually revealing the simple
          principles that will bring us back into the presence of our
          heavenly Father, and which will give unto us a place in his
          celestial kingdom, if we abide a celestial law.
          We can all see the effects of the establishment of the Church and
          kingdom of God upon the earth, and we perceive that the effects
          of the Gospel are very different from false tradition and from
          sectarian absurdities that deluge the world. The requirement is
          that men shall abide the celestial law of God, in order that they
          may be quickened by that power and be united by those principles
          with the Apostles, and Prophets, and all those beings who have
          been quickened by it in ages that are gone, and dwell in the
          light and presence of God, and be for ever in the society of the
          city of Enoch and our brethren who have gone before us, and who
          have been made perfect by the same Gospel which we have received.
          If we were to go into the celestial world, we should then be
          actuated by the spirit that predominates there, and have
          continually with us those principles by which we should be
          governed. We have got to possess the same spirit and principles
          in this world, and we have got to abide a celestial law here, and
          be united upon the principle that unites the people of God who
          dwell in his presence, in order to get the same glory that they
          These are the principles that are taught us from day to day, and
          we must learn to carry them out, and we must lay aside our
          selfishness and all false principles that we have imbibed and
          that have been taught us from our infancy, in order that we may
          obtain the blessings and power of God.
          It is different with us from what it is and will be with the
          children of this people. As one of the old Prophets said,
          speaking of the gathering in the last days, when they would come
          together, wake up from their drowsiness, get to understand
          principle, and see their true position, they will say, "Surely
          our fathers have inherited lies and things wherein there is no
          profit." And it is truly so; for we can already say that our
          fathers have inherited lies, and we have inherited many of their
          Until we heard the fulness of the Gospel, we were filled with
          traditions and false doctrines; and the teachers of the day did
          not instruct men to walk in the same path, but they were
          continually teaching something that would divide men in their
          feelings, and that would produce as may different creeds and
          schisms as there were sects in the world; and hence we have all
          the evils attendant upon that course of life.
          This puts me in mind of a circumstance that happened when I was
          preaching in Kentucky. I preached upon the first principles of
          the Gospel, and at the close of my discourse I gave the privilege
          for any one to ask questions or make remarks, if they felt so
          disposed. A gentleman arose, and I noticed that a great many of
          the congregation began to laugh; and I afterwards learned that
          the gentleman was an infidel, and hence the congregation were
          disposed to make fun of him. He said, "I will not detain you
          long, but I wish to state to this large congregation that Mr.
          Woodruff has taught me more this evening than I ever learned in
          my whole life before. From my boyhood I have been searching into
          religion; and when I have asked a minister in relation to the way
          of life, he would point me to the way he was walking himself;
          then I would ask another, and he would point out a different way;
          and I might have asked a hundred, and they would all have pointed
          out a different road, and they would tell me that I must be born
          again, and one class of men who were said to be born again would
          take one way, and another would take a different road; and I
          always marvelled at this, for I did not see any sense in men
          taking different roads to lead to the kingdom of heaven. But now
          this man, Mr. Woodruff, has told me the truth, and shown me the
          reason they took so many different roads after they were born
          again; and the reason is, because they were all born BLIND."
          This in reality is the case, for many of us have been born again
          according to the traditions of our fathers; but those that keep
          the celestial law and obey the principles of the Gospel of
          Christ, you never find them taking different roads. There is but
          one right road, and it is a straightforward one; and the
          principles and rules that govern you in that path are simple and
          easy to be understood. This is the path for us to walk in, and I
          consider that we are greatly blessed in having learned the true
          way and in being delivered from that yoke of bondage that has
          chained us down with error, false doctrine, and false teachers.
          This I count one of the greatest blessings that God has given to
          the children of men, to have the plain truth pointed out to them.
          You look at the religions of the day, and see their confusion and
          the mystery that hangs around them: you may present the truth to
          them as plainly as you can, and so simply that an intelligent
          child might understand, and still they cannot comprehend it. You
          ask a man among them about the character of God, and about his
          attributes, and what can he tell you? They will preach about God,
          about the Son, and the Holy Ghost, long sermons, to prove that
          those three personages are one; and when they get through, they
          know nothing about it, and conclude it is a great mystery.
          Where is the man or woman that comprehended anything about God or
          about eternity until Joseph Smith revealed the fulness of the
          Gospel? I could read of those things in the Bible which we now
          believe in and receive; but I was surrounded by the traditions of
          the world and could not comprehend them.
          We are now taught, from time to time, the plain principles of the
          Gospel of Jesus Christ--the plan of salvation--the way to live in
          order to have the approbation of our Father in heaven. Is not
          this a blessing above all blessings? If this people could
          comprehend their blessings, they never need have an unhappy
          moment. If this people could comprehend the position they stand
          in and their true relationship to God, they would feel perfectly
          satisfied, and they would realize that our heavenly Father is
          merciful unto us, and that he has bestowed great and glorious
          blessings upon us.
          When we consider that we can come into this Tabernacle and sing,
          pray, preach, exhort, and bless, and that there is no sheriff
          standing at our doors with writs to arrest us, we may consider
          these things as blessings from the hands of the Almighty; for
          they are such.
          As brother Brigham, brother Heber, and many others have said,
          there is not a man that is capable of entering into the celestial
          kingdom of God who is not willing to receive the instructions of
          his brethren and abide the law of God. There is not a man in this
          kingdom, who has got the right spirit within him, but who thanks
          God for the mountains and for the five hundred miles of sage
          plains that lie between us and the homes of our enemies.
          The hand of God has been visible in bringing us here, and it has
          been visible with us all the time, as far as we have taken the
          counsel that has been given us. These are truths that cannot be
          I feel comfortable and truly thankful in my mind for the
          blessings bestowed upon us, and I feel to pray that we as a
          people may increase in the knowledge of God and of the laws of
          his kingdom, and in the knowledge of all those principles that
          lead to glory, to exaltation, and eternal lives, and that will
          lead us back to our Father in heaven. The troubles of the
          children of men are very numerous, but a great many of them are
          borrowed. I believe two-thirds of the troubles of men are
          borrowed. It appears to be a natural gift, or it seems natural to
          us to borrow trouble; and it is a good deal so with our
          blessings: we look forward to some future time when we are going
          to enjoy great and glorious blessings, but our blessings are at
          the present time. This is the time that we should enjoy the
          blessings that God has given us. We should rejoice to-day, and be
          happy to-day, and feel to thank the Lord for the blessings that
          he has put into our hands; and as to borrowing troubles, we
          should let them all pass; for it is sufficient for us to pass
          through troubles and trials when they are upon us; and if we
          pursue this course, we may escape a great many imaginary, trying,
          and perplexing scenes.
          Many of us have expected trouble this winter from enemies; and it
          did appear as if trouble was inevitable, to look at things
          naturally. We may look at things as they may approach us next
          summer, and we may expect that our enemies will seek to destroy
          us; and in fact I do not doubt but that it is now in the hearts
          of the children of men to concoct schemes for our destruction;
          for we know they desire to have this people blotted out of
          existence. They have not the Spirit of God, but they are in worse
          than midnight darkness; and the consequence is, they do not
          delight or desire to see anybody live upon the earth who will
          serve God and carry out his purposes. They are afraid of the
          power of true religion and of the consequences that must
          necessarily arise; and hence they feel to say in their heart,
          There shall not a kingdom be upon the earth that belongs to God.
          This is the feeling of our enemies; for they are stirred up by
          Satan to root our every principle of righteousness and truth from
          the earth. Can they do this? No, they never can. Why not? Because
          God reigns, governs, and controls the ship of Zion, and he has
          established the principles of eternal truth upon the earth, and
          they do dwell in the hearts of the children of men, and they will
          bring forth fruit to the honour and glory of God. We do know and
          understand that this kingdom will not be given to another people;
          for it is established with a promise never to be given to another
          people; but, with the light of the Holy Spirit, we shall subdue
          our enemies and overcome every obstacle. It is our duty to be
          continually increasing in faith, that we may be enabled to call
          upon the Lord with acceptance, and that we may stay our enemies
          and hedge up their way; and let us pray for them, and let us
          continue to believe that, if we do as we are told, we can
          accomplish whatever we are united upon; and be assured that the
          Spirit of God will not lead us to unite upon anything that is
          We know it is right to establish a kingdom of God upon the earth,
          and we know it is right to establish in the hearts of men the
          principles of life and salvation which God has revealed through
          Joseph the Prophet.
          If we will do our duty and listen to those that are set to lead
          us, we shall find that the hand of God will be over us for our
          good, and it will be against those that are planning for our
          destruction; and God will strengthen and uphold this people until
          the day comes for the kingdom of God to spread itself abroad, and
          until the law of God is issued forth from Zion. We shall find
          that this will be the case; and inasmuch as we have these
          privileges and this faith, as Saints of the Most High, we should
          prize them and lay hold of them with one united heart, and not
          consider that the battle is to the strong or the race to the
          swift; for the Lord holds the destinies of all, and we are in his
          I do feel thankful to see the spirit of peace and the spirit of
          cleansing here at home. I am thankful that I see the time when
          wicked men do not delight to dwell here in Utah, and I do feel
          that the righteousness, the conduct, and the acts of this people
          in general will be such that it will be a hot place for wicked
          It is our duty to live in this manner so that we can ferret out
          iniquity wherever it exists. Men that come here to seek for our
          gold and silver find that it is now too hot for them. The day has
          now come that they cannot bear the burning heat of Zion, and I am
          glad of it; and I also hope that we may still increase, for there
          is still room for more improvement. We speak of improvement, and
          truly there has been a great improvement in the midst of this
          people; but there is still room for great advancement to be made,
          for many of us are still a long way short of being prepared for
          the celestial kingdom and of having the reward promised to
          celestial and exalted beings.
          There is great room for every man to labour and to improve his
          life, that he may be prepared to meet our Father in heaven and to
          enjoy the same glory that those participate in who are heirs to
          the celestial kingdom of God. Notwithstanding these things are
          before us, I fear that we do not sufficiently appreciate them;
          but we must learn to so order our lives that we shall be ready at
          any moment to respond to any and every call that may be made upon
          We feel at home here, and we feel that this is the place for us;
          and my constant prayer to God is that we may not only enjoy, but
          that we may prize the privileges that are afforded us--prize the
          day that we live in, and the City of Great Salt Lake where we
          Those who have been here for years past do not realize the
          difference that there is between this place and the world; but I
          can tell you that, with the wicked, it is one continual scene of
          blasphemy and of every species of wickedness that is calculated
          to lead the mind down to death and to lead men and woman from the
          way of life, and from the holy Gospel of Jesus Christ, and from
          everything that is calculated to produce holiness and purity in
          the human mind.
          The power that predominates here has a tendency to lead us in the
          path of virtue and rectitude and to unite us together: it will
          lead us to obey the law of heaven and to carry out those
          principles that we are taught day by day. In this way we can do
          right and have the approbation of our heavenly Father; and then
          he will preserve us from all our enemies, whether they be few or
          many; and though the whole world be arrayed against us, the Lord
          will as sure preserve us and make a little one a great nation as
          he delivered Israel out of Egyptian bondage; and this kingdom
          will become, as Daniel has seen it, a great mountain, and fill
          the whole earth.
          These and all the blessings and promises which he has given will
          be fulfilled in their time and in their season; which may the
          Lord grant for Christ's sake. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Brigham
          Young, December 27, 1857
                          Brigham Young, December 27, 1857
                              AGENCY--RECREATION, ETC.
              A Discourse by President Brigham Young, delivered in the
                      Great Salt Lake City, December 27, 1857.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          It is a great privilege to know the way of life and salvation,
          and to know how to walk therein; yet we are still, more or less,
          under the traditions of our fathers: they are woven around us as
          a garment in which we are clothed.
          It would be a great blessing for a people to be brought to
          actually realize that all they can comprehend--all they can see
          with their eyes, hear with their ears, or understand with their
          hearts, is the creation of God, from the mighty globes that roll
          in the immensity of space to the smallest mote that helps to
          compose this world. It would also be a great blessing for a
          people to really understand that the eye of the Lord is upon all
          his works--that nothing escapes his notice, and that all is
          composed, organized, and brought forth for the glory, benefit,
          and use of intelligent beings. There is no true enjoyment in
          life--nothing that can be a blessing to an individual or to a
          community, but what is ordained of God to bless his people. If we
          could at all times strictly realize this, do you not think that
          God would be continually in all our thoughts? Could we but behold
          and realize the handiwork of the Lord in all his doings, and that
          he has created and ordained everything for the benefit of his
          creatures, would not that bring us to sense, realize, and
          understand the hand of the Lord in all things? In consequence of
          the darkness and traditions that have been over us, many look
          upon things, acts, and blessings, not knowing whether they flow
          from the Lord or proceed from some other power.
          Who would be deprived of the blessing of sight or of hearing?
          What amount of money would hire an individual to part with those
          senses? The light of the sun to cheer the face of nature--to
          light up the path that we may walk safely therein without
          stumbling, who would be deprived of? Who gave it to us? Who gave
          us affection? Who has ordained the passions of the mind and the
          body, which constitute the soul? Who should control them? To whom
          should they be devoted? If the vail of the covering that is over
          us and the nations of the earth were so removed that we could
          behold the glory, the excellency, the beauty of the attributes
          that are dispensed by the children of men--for they are appointed
          by the Lord who has ordained all these things--would not God be
          in all our thoughts?
          We are now blessed with the privilege of coming to the
          understanding of being taught and of teaching ourselves to come
          into subjection to the celestial law of Christ, so that every
          passion, every sensation, and faculty that God has bestowed upon
          us may be devoted to his glory, to our advancement in knowledge,
          to our perfection in this probation, and to a preparation for
          perfection in his celestial kingdom. This is a blessing indeed!
          In the course of life there are many of our thoughts, words, and
          acts that appear to be of minor consequence,--so much so, that we
          would hardly consider that the Lord would notice them, and are
          apt to forget that he watches every movement of his creatures, to
          know whether they appreciate their gifts and blessings which flow
          from him, or whether they treat them as a thing of naught.
          We have the privilege, while the majority of the inhabitants of
          the earth are deprived of it, of learning the ways of God. He is
          in the acts, and directs and guides all the affairs of this
          world, and we have the privilege of understanding his ways in so
          doing. We have the privilege of learning the principles that
          pertain to God and godliness. We have the privilege of learning
          the weakness, ignorance, blindness, and all the evils that sin
          has brought upon the children of men--of so understanding correct
          principles that we can discern the things that are of God and the
          things that are not of him, and of learning the great wisdom
          displayed by the Almighty in causing intelligent beings to dwell
          in a sinful world.
          Brother Woodruff, in his remarks, alluded to the priests of the
          so-called Christian world. Were you to summon the priests of the
          day, not only those that consider themselves full of wisdom, bud
          also those from the heathen nations, (and there are hundreds of
          thousands, and, probably, millions that are performing the labour
          of officiating as messengers from a superior or supreme Being to
          enlighten the minds of the children of men and instruct them in
          things pertaining to eternity, to lead their minds, as they say,
          from sin and the power of darkness,) you would at once learn that
          there is not knowledge enough among them all to give you the
          correct reason why God suffered sin and blindness to enter into
          this world. That knowledge has not been upon the earth for
          centuries, until the Lord revealed it through the Prophet Joseph
          Smith,--at least not to our knowledge, and we have a pretty good
          understanding of this world and its inhabitants. There are but a
          very few places in the north, south, east, or west, on the
          islands or on the continents, that are inhabited by intelligent
          beings, but what have been penetrated. Missionaries have visited
          them and men of learning and scientific research; and they have
          not only learned the geography, but have actually sounded the
          intelligence of the inhabitants of the whole globe, so far as we
          yet know, going from west to east, and in the south and north as
          far as man can penetrate; and among them all, aside from the
          revelations in our day, there is not knowledge enough to tell you
          why God suffered sin to come into the world. You have been told
          the reason why--that all intelligence must prove facts by their
          No organized beings are prepared to become associated with or
          crowned heirs in the celestial kingdom, until they have passed
          through these ordeals and have drank of the bitter cup to the
          dregs, so that they know and understand good from evil. There was
          not knowledge enough in the whole world to tell even that, until
          it was again revealed through Joseph the Prophet. The very best
          of them would marvel why God suffered Lucifer or the serpent to
          tempt mother Eve. That always has been a great mystery to the
          world, and is to this day, with the exception of the knowledge
          that has gone forth from the Lord through his prophet Joseph, and
          then through the Elders of Israel, who have plainly taught many
          doctrines that were previously a perfect mystery to the people,
          though they have now adopted many of them into their faith; but
          they will not give us credit for them.
          Before the Gospel revealed the introduction of sin to this
          planet, it was a great marvel even to the most learned, and they
          would ask, "Why was it so?--is it not strange?" and would the
          rest with the expression, "It was suffered to be so." While
          reasoning or familiarly conversing with one another, let the
          question be asked, "Why was Eve suffered to partake of the
          forbidden fruit?" and the invariable reply was, "I cannot answer
          that question: It seems that it was so, and it appears a great
          pity." That is all the knowledge there is in the world on that
          point. The starting-point they have not learned, that no
          intelligent being could be exalted with the Gods without being
          subjected to the temptation of sin, that he might know and
          understand the power of the adversary, the opposite to goodness;
          for it is written that "There must needs be an opposition in all
          things." The world have not yet learned that simple truth.
          I remember hearing a debate between brother Alfred Cordon, one of
          our Elders, and a sectarian priest, when I was in England; and I
          presume there were a score or two of priests ready to put
          questions and answers into the mouth of their speaker. They
          expected to be able to use up the Book of Mormon upon the point
          of Adam's partaking of the forbidden fruit from the hand of Eve;
          but the answer that the woman was found in the transgression, and
          not the man, came so quickly that it hushed them up at once, so
          that they could not argue further. Brother Orson Pratt whispered
          to brother Cordon the answer. Many of even these my sisters who
          are before me to-day have seen the wisdom that is in the
          Christian world, while they have been conversing with their
          former priests, and have answered some little question that was a
          perfect mystery to a priest--a little question which they
          understood, and the priest did not, and have seen the priests
          thrown completely off their guard, become dizzy in their heads,
          and unable to continue with the conversation. It is written in
          this Bible that the woman was found in the transgression, and not
          the man; and that plain doctrine has baffled all the learning of
          the priests.
          We have the privilege of coming to understanding--of knowing that
          everything in heaven, on earth, and in hell is ordained for the
          benefit, advantage, and exaltation of intelligent beings;
          therefore there is nothing that is out of the pale of our faith.
          There is nothing, I may say, good or bad, light or darkness,
          truth or error, but what is to be controlled by intelligent
          beings; and we should learn how to take into our possession every
          blessing and every privilege that God has put within our reach,
          and know how to use our time, our talents, and all our acts for
          the advancement of his kingdom upon the earth. These principles
          are hid from all other people in the world; but we have the
          privilege of learning them. We should apply our hearts to wisdom
          and learn the things of God.
          The Lord asks a question, through the Prophet Amos, "Shall there
          be evil in a city, and the Lord hath not done it?" Is there
          anything that passes with the children of men that the Lord does
          not control to his glory? That is what the Lord wants every man
          and woman to understand. If there is good, the Lord is there to
          dictate it. If there is power, has he not power over all the
          power there is upon the face of the earth? If there is evil, if
          there is sorrow, if there is trouble, if there are trials for his
          people, is he not there to dictate those sorrows and troubles?
          All that passes upon the earth is under his eye; he dictates in
          the affairs of nations. If a mighty king and kingdom are raised
          up upon any portion of the earth, the Lord has done it. And when
          a mighty nation crumbles in its power, the Lord has touched their
          pride and strength. He raises and casts down; he dictates in the
          light and in the darkness, at his pleasure; he makes the thick
          darkness his chariot and rides upon the clouds; and he is also
          the brightness of the sun. We have the privilege of learning that
          God dictates, controls, and manages all to his own glory.
          With many, even in this Church, the questions arises, "If God
          dictates all these affairs, to whom shall sin be attributed? Am I
          to blame, if God always dictates and controls?" You should keep
          before you, as Latter-day Saints, other principles besides those
          you may be able to hear or read at any one time. No man can tell
          you everything in one short discourse. You understand that you
          have organizations endowed with a certain portion of divine
          intelligence, which is supreme, absolute, and independent in its
          sphere. You are organized expressly for the purpose of being
          exalted, of preserving your identity before the Lord, and being
          prepared to enter into celestial glory, to be crowned, to receive
          kingdoms, thrones, and dominions,--to design and act as do the
          Gods. These principles you are well acquainted with, and they
          should be continually before you. All intelligent beings are also
          endowed with certain inalienable rights, privileges, and powers
          inherent in them. When God organized intelligent beings, he
          organized them as independent beings to a certain extent, as he
          is himself. And whether we see an evil act or a good one
          performed by an intelligent being, that being has performed the
          act by his will, by his own independent organization, which is
          capable of doing good or evil, of choosing light or darkness, of
          performing that which will promote life, or that which will
          promote death, or a dissolution of his organization. Then,
          without the evils being placed before us, we should not be
          capable of refusing it; without darkness had come into the earth,
          we should never have learned how to appreciate the light. Then
          all the family of Adam and Eve would have been mere machines, as
          a portion of the inhabitants of the earth profess to believe that
          God has foreordained all the acts of the children of men from all
          eternity, and that they are obliged to act as they do. But we
          have learned that in our organization we are as independent as
          the angels are in theirs, or as any heavenly being that dwells in
          If a nation transgresses wholesome laws and oppresses any of its
          citizens or another nation, until the cup of its iniquity is
          full, through acts that are perfectly under its own control, God
          will hurl those who are in authority from their power, and they
          will be forgotten, and he will take another people, though poor
          and dispised, a hiss and a by-word among the popular nations, and
          instil into them power and wisdom; and they will increase and
          prosper, until they in turn become a great nation on the earth.
          God does that; and all within our power, that we have any
          understanding of, is ordained for the use, benefit, and control
          of his intelligent creatures.
          You remember that a year ago this people were in the height of
          what they called a reformation. You also well recollect my
          teachings and my feelings upon the subject, and that to my mind
          the necessity of a reformation among Latter-day Saints was a
          disgrace, and beneath our calling; for it belongs to sinners and
          the ungodly, and not to Saints, to be getting up a reformation,
          though continually improving belongs to the calling of every
          Saint. Suffice to say, there has been a great improvement in the
          midst of this people. A great many have confessed their sins; but
          much fewer have forsaken them. I would that all had forsaken
          their sins, their transgressions, their wickedness in every
          particular, and followed their iniquitous ways no longer; but
          such is not the fact: there has been more confessing than
          forsaking. This winter brings a new scene before us. Many of the
          brethren have been deprived of the privilege of labouring at home
          during the past fall: They have been in the cold and storms, and
          have but lately returned. For about two weeks past it has been,
          "Brother Brigham may we have a dance in our Ward? Brother
          Brigham, may I get up a party for my Quorum?" Bishop Hunter will
          come and say, "Several Bishops have written to me to ask you
          whether their Wards may have a dance, or a few parties?" But I do
          not believe that there is a single Bishop, or President of a
          Stake, or President of any of the Seventies or of the High
          Priests, or any officer of this Church and Kingdom, who has,
          during that time, asked me whether they could have the privilege
          of serving God with all their hearts.
          In a word, here is the difficulty: Many of my brethren and
          sisters who are now before me believe, to this day, if they were
          to go into a room prepared for music and dancing, they have
          stepped aside from serving God, and are serving somebody else. I
          have answered all Bishops and all Presidents and all this people,
          with regard to their dancing, that I am willing that those who
          live their religion every day, hour, and minute of their lives to
          the glory of God shall dance all they wish to; but I have not yet
          given my consent for any other class to do so, and I want you all
          to understand it. If your minds have been wrought up by too much
          anxiety--if you have had wakeful hours when you ought to have
          been asleep, in consequence of the threatened danger and
          troubles,--if you have been afflicted in spirit, and your minds
          are worn down, which they can be, so long as they are connected
          with the body, which is apt to wear out, reasonable recreation
          may be beneficial. The mind, being inseparably connected with
          this body, becomes tired: I acknowledge that mine does. I
          sometimes feel that I have not a pound of strength left, just
          from sitting and thinking. You may judge whether there has been a
          labour upon me, when you reflect that I realize that God holds me
          responsible for the salvation and safety of this people. You hold
          me responsible, every one of you, as standing between you and
          God, to guide you safely--to dictate and direct the affairs of
          this Church and kingdom; and then you may judge whether my mind
          labours or not. My mind becomes tired, and so do your minds, if
          you are Saints.
          The mind of a man who is wholly devoted to the Church and kingdom
          of God on the earth is powerfully exercised, and he feels all
          that I can, in proportion to his standing and calling. The minds
          of such men are exercised from morning until morning again, and
          they labour more unhealthily than a person does at mowing or
          chopping wood, and their minds become weary. What do they need? A
          little relaxation. If you want to dance and rest your minds,
          dance. But a man or woman that intends, when they go into a room
          prepared for music and dancing, to serve the Devil a little
          while, I would to God that they would go to California, where
          they may serve the Devil all they desire to.
          I would rather have a hundred righteous men with whom to face all
          hell, and the world at its back, than to have all this great
          community, unless they serve the Lord.
               Those who cannot serve God with a pure heart in the dance
          should not dance; though dancing is not an ordinance, except we
          say it is an ordinance of folly and weakness. I have not the
          privilege of going to the kanyon to chop and load wood and logs.
          I do not go to the joiner's bench, as I used to, and toil until
          my body is nearly wearied to death. But my mind is from eternity
          to eternity--from the beginning of the creation to the end
          thereof: it is not confined to the length of a twelve-foot board.
          My mind becomes tires, and perhaps some of yours do. If so, go
          and exercise your bodies, and thank God, and say that it is a
          blessing and a privilege that he has given you for his name's
          glory and for your benefit and the advancement of the righteous,
          and holy, and the godly, those who have kept their covenant with
          their God and with one another.
          If you wish to dance, dance; and you are just as much prepared
          for a prayer meeting after dancing as ever you were, if your are
          Saints. If you desire to ask God for anything, you are as well
          prepared to do so in the dance as in any other place, of you are
          Saints. Are your eyes open to know that everything in the earth,
          in hell, or in heaven, is ordained for the use of intelligent
          It is like words in the wind to talk about the sweetness of the
          honeycomb to those who have not tasted the opposite. You may talk
          about the glory and comfort of the light to those who never knew
          darkness, and what do they know about it? Nothing. You might as
          well preach to those lamps. If we can realize that everything in
          all the eternities that ever were and ever will be is ordained of
          God for the benefit and glory of intelligent beings, we can
          understand why he said to Joseph, "Against none is my anger
          kindled, only those who do not acknowledge my had in all things."
          Do I acknowledge his hand? Yes. I told you in your afflictions,
          drivings, persecutions, and all that has been grievous to be
          borne, that the hand of God was in that as much as it was in
          bringing forth his revelations and the Priesthood through Joseph.
          I will acknowledge the hand of God, not only when our Government
          is arrayed against this little handful of people, but also when
          the whole world take the same stand. I am going to acknowledge
          the hand of God every time.
          The wicked kick at "Mormonism," but they will find it somewhat
          like the old man's stone wall that he built five feet high and
          six feet thick, to prevent the boys from stealing his apples; and
          when the boys in their anger tipped it over, behold it was higher
          then it was before. So with "Mormonism:" every time they give it
          a kick, it rises in the scale of power and influence in the
          world. I am also going to acknowledge the hand of the lord when I
          see the day, and I pray that I may, when I can say, Let our
          Elders pass and repass peaceably, or I will attend to you: let
          them preach the Gospel, as you do others; and if you can put them
          down by the Scriptures--by good, sound philosophy and argument,
          then give not heed to their teachings; but do not mob them, or I
          will attend to your injustice. I want to see that day. [Many
          voices, Amen!] And I will acknowledge the hand of God the same as
          I do in the way he has handled the crowd that has lately come
          into our Territory.
          We here enjoy a goodly share of the common blessings of life; and
          you see a body of men and women filled with intelligence, and yet
          you see and hear of some persons who cannot control themselves.
          God has so ordained that you may learn to control yourselves and
          work righteousness. It is ordained that you may prove yourselves
          worthy of every principle and power that are in the Gods to
          control in eternity.
          The principle of pure affection in the Gift of God, and it is for
          us to learn to control it and exercise proper dominion over it;
          and if we are faithful, we shall see the time when we can say, as
          our Father in heaven says, I am angry with the wicked; I hate
          their works, and my anger is kindled against them. Is there any
          malice or wrath there? No, for it is written that the Lord is
          angry, but sins not. And one of his servants, learning something
          about this principle, writes to his brethren, "Be ye angry and
          sin not;" but it would be a sin to take a course to destroy that
          which is calculated for good. If you sin not, it is in destroying
          the evil works, and saving that portion that is ordained for
          exaltation: that is being angry and sinning not.
          We ought to control our passions. God has given us judgment and
          discretion. Every qualification of man is ordained of God, as
          well as good and evil. Light and darkness are here; the power of
          the enemy are here. It is for us to bring into right subjection
          every act of our lives and all around us. It is for us to see the
          hand of God and acknowledge it in all things.
          If you want to dance, run a foot-race, pitch quoits, or play at
          ball, do it, and exercise your bodies, and let your minds rest.
          The blessing of food, sleep, and social enjoyment are ordained of
          God for his glory and our benefit, and it is for us to learn to
          use them and not abuse them, that his kingdom may advance on the
          earth, and we advance in it. That is our errand in the world, and
          we have no business but to build up the kingdom of God, and
          preserve it and ourselves in it. Whether it is ploughing, sowing,
          harvesting, building, going into the kanyons, or whatever it is
          we do, it is all within the pale of the kingdom of God, to
          forward his cause on the earth, to redeem and build up his Zion,
          and prepare ourselves, that when the Lord shall usher in the
          morning of rest we may enter into our labours to officiate for
          our dead friends back to Adam.
          All that have lived or will live on this earth will have the
          privilege of receiving the Gospel. They will have Apostles,
          Prophets, and ministers there, as we have here, to guide them in
          the ways of truth and righteousness, and lead them back to God.
          All will have a chance for salvation and eternal life. What do
          you think of that Gospel? No one will be denied that privilege of
          having it. Where is there a sectarian that can tell you anything
          about the power of the Gospel?
          Brethren and sisters, if you have understood my mind with regard
          to your recreations, I am happy. But understand that there is not
          a man or woman professing to be in this Church and kingdom that
          has any liberty to drink to excess, to lie, deceive, cheat,
          steal, or do anything that is wrong; and those who do such things
          have not my sanction to join the others in the dance. There are
          some who practise stealing to this day--who are dishonest, and
          will lie; and such persons have not my consent to participate in
          Those that have kept their covenants and served their God, if
          they wish to exercise themselves in any way, to rest their minds
          and tire their bodies, go and enjoy yourselves in the dance, and
          let God be in all your thoughts in this as in all other things,
          and he will bless you; and I bless you all, in the name of Jesus
          Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Orson
          Hyde, January 3, 1858
                             Orson Hyde, January 3, 1858
                           STATES--CHURCH GOVERNMENT, ETC.
             A Sermon by Elder Orson Hyde, delivered in the Tabernacle,
                       Great Salt Lake City, January 3, 1858.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          Brethren and sisters, it has fallen to my lot this morning to
          speak unto you a short time as I may be led by the Spirit of the
          Lord our God. It is very natural for me, when I arise to address
          a congregation, to speak pretty energetically and pretty loudly
          also. This you all know that are acquainted with me and that have
          heard me speak. I like to hear an energetic speaker; but one who
          speaks very loud is apt to injure himself. When I have spoken too
          loudly, I have done injustice to myself and probably to the
          congregation. I shall endeavour, the Lord being my helper, to
          modulate my voice according to the Spirit of God that I may have
          when speaking, and not go beyond it, neither fall short. At the
          same time, I do not want my mind so trammelled as brother Parley
          P. Pratt's once was, when dancing was first introduced into
          Nauvoo among the Saints. I observed brother Parley standing in
          the figure, and he was making no motion particularly, only up and
          down. Says I, "Brother Parley, why don't you move, forward?" Says
          he, "When I think which way I am going, I forget the step; and
          when I think of the step, I forget which way to go."
          I desire that I may watch myself, that while I may be thinking
          what to say, I may not allow my voice to range unchecked or
          uncontrolled; and while I may seek to govern my voice, I hope not
          to be forgetful of matter for your edification.
          The principle of government among the saints is the most
          important principle that there is for us to understand. If we
          apply it to individual capacity, it is the most important to us
          as individuals, not only in the government of the hand and arm,
          which are greater members than the tongue, but in the government
          of the tongue also. The tongue, though a very small member, is of
          all importance, which we readily concede. If we can govern the
          tongue, we may be considered qualified to rule; for the tongue,
          though a small member, sets on fire the course of nature, and is
          too often set on fire of hell.
          It is the tongue that causes the evils that exist in the world;
          it is the tongue that sets nations at war; it is the tongue that
          causes broils in the domestic circle; it is the tongue that
          causes the fire of animosity and ill-will to burn in our midst.
          If we can succeed in governing the tongue according to the mind
          and will of God, we have got peace in our families, peace in our
          neighbourhoods, peace in our community, and, what is more than
          all, we have peace with our God; for he that offendeth not in
          word, the same is a perfect man. Show me a perfect man that does
          not have peace with his God, and you will show me something I
          never saw or heard of. If we can govern the tongue, we are
          prepared than to enter upon the government of other matters; but
          I think we shall have plenty to do, at least for the present, to
          govern our tongues, even the best that are under the sound of my
          voice; for there is not person but that sometimes speaks
          unadvisedly with his lips--but that sometimes lets off an
          improper word; for the tongue or mouth is merely the valve of the
          heart--the place where the sentiments are discharged that have
          been confined in the heart, and that is the true index to the
          real inner man. Hence, "By they words thou shalt be justified,
          and by them thou shalt be condemned." Who of us this morning can
          say that we have not offended in word, even this morning? Can we
          say that we have not offended in word since the new year of 1858
          began? 1857 is gone by; 1858 is now before us. Have we offended
          in word since this year began?--for I am sure that you all prayed
          that, with the close of the year, your sins might be cancelled
          and swept away into the gulf of forgetfulness, that they be
          brought against you no more. Then I trust that you have entered
          upon the new year with a clean page--turned over a new leaf. Is
          there a spot or blemish upon that new page thus far until now?
          Have none of us offended in word? If we have not, so far we are
          perfect, and able also to bridle the whole body. This will do
          then, perhaps, for the regulation and control of the tongue.
          There are other matters that I may be led to speak upon in
          relation to the government of the Saints as a body. By what law
          shall we be governed? By what rule are we to be controlled and
          managed? By the laws and power of this world, or by the laws and
          powers of the world to come? We form a very important link in the
          chain of existence. We are occupying a very important place at
          the present time, and we are called upon to set an example. We
          are called upon to be the pioneers of a work that shall be
          everlasting. To be sure, we are but weak and feeble; yet we are
          the strongest of all people on the earth, if we have the God of
          heaven to be our helper; and we have him, if we offend not in
          word--if we can govern the tongue.
          It is said there are a great many imperfections among us as a
          people. Grant it. At the same time, it is said we are the best
          people on earth, and the only friends God has. Admit this to be
          so. We may not be so pure friends as he might desire, but we are
          the best there are; and if he suffers us to be cut off, he will
          have none left of any kind. This is verily so.
          We know that if we want a certain work done, we select the most
          proper individual for that job. If he is not so good as we could
          wish, we take the best we have and use that individual. So the
          Almighty, if he cannot have a people exactly to his liking, I do
          not know but that he will take the best there is, and manage and
          get along with them according to the wisdom he possesses.
          Now, in relation to the Constitution of the United States, I want
          to speak a few words. There is a great deal of sacredness
          attached to the Constitution of the United States by this people:
          that is all right and good. The Constitution is well enough, and
          so is anything that serves the purpose for which it was created,
          provided that purpose be a good one. It was designed and created
          with a good intention. If it serves the purpose and end of its
          creation, it is good; and when it has served the end of its
          creation, the purpose and design of the Almighty are
          accomplished, and I do not know that he has any more particular
          use for it. He may then lay it aside as a relic to be respected
          and honoured for the good it has done, for aught I know.
          It is said that brother Joseph in his lifetime declared that the
          Elders of this Church should step forth at a particular time when
          the Constitution should be in danger, and rescue it, and save it.
          This may be so; but I do not recollect that he said exactly so. I
          believe he said something like this--that the time would come
          when the Constitution and the country would be in danger of an
          overthrow; and said he, If the Constitution be saved at all, it
          will be by the Elders of this Church. I believe this is about the
          language, as nearly as I can recollect it.
          The question is whether it will be saved at all, or not. I do not
          know that it matters to us whether it is or not: the Lord will
          provide for and take care of his people, if we do every duty, and
          fear and honour him, and keep his commandments; and he will not
          leave us without a Constitution. There is none of you will
          dispute that the Temple of Solomon was built by the inspiration
          of the Almighty, and it was built to answer a certain purpose and
          design: it was built by the skill, wisdom, ingenuity, and
          strength of man, aided by the inspiration of the Almighty. It was
          a beautiful structure, and excited the admiration of all people.
          Even the Queen of the South came to behold the wondrous works of
          Solomon and his wisdom and declared that the half had not been
          told her.
          The edifice stood for centuries, though it had become somewhat
          like the boy's jack-knife, which had had three new blades and two
          new handles. In the days of our Saviour, the disciples were very
          anxious to show him the magnificence of that building. "Master,"
          said they, "see what stones! Look at the grandeur, sublimity,
          strength, and skill displayed in the erection of this building!"
          I see it all; but I tell you one thing, and it is near at hand,
          when there shall not be left one stone upon another that shall
          not be thrown down. "You come out against this temple!" The Jews
          thought the Saviour was a blasphemer when he said he would
          destroy this temple, and in three days he would raise it up
          again. "What! are you going to destroy this sacred place that was
          built by the inspiration of the Almighty?" They supposed he
          referred to the temple built by Solomon; but instead of that, he
          referred to the temple of his own body.
          This shows how the Jews viewed their temple, and the importance
          they attached to it. They considered it as a most sacred place,
          and this is why they misunderstood the Saviour and considered him
          a blasphemer for presuming to speak against the temple. You
          discover that the Saviour says, There shall not be left here one
          stone upon another that shall not be thrown down.
          Why must this temple be razed to the foundation? Because it has
          answered the purpose of its erection; and another thing--it has
          been so grossly polluted that it has incurred the displeasure of
          the Almighty, and he will not see so noble a structure defiled
          and remain in the midst of the Jews to be used as a den of
          thieves, instead of a house of prayer. The Lord went to work to
          purify it, and took a whip of small cords, and went in and cast
          out them that bought and sold, and overthrew the tables of the
          money-changers, and the seats of them that sold doves, and made
          quite an uproar in the midst of the Jews. Still they would resort
          there. There was the place where they would buy and sell, despite
          the reproof the Saviour had given them. Then said he, There shall
          not be left one stone upon another that shall not be thrown down.
          It is useless to endeavour to purify and cleanse it, because it
          has been made the theatre of so much corruption and hypocrisy. I
          will sweep it out of existence, and utterly destroy it.
          Just so with the Constitution of the United States. It was framed
          by the inspiration of the Almighty, we readily grant. It has
          served a certain purpose--been a partial shield to the Church in
          its infancy, or it has been a check upon mobocracy that otherwise
          would have risen against it. It has not been a protection
          exactly, but a check; and the Almighty saw fit to bring forth his
          work under this Constitution. It has served and fulfilled its
          purpose. Now, look at the disgraceful roguery practised under
          that Constitution. There cannot be an election of a President
          without bribery, betraying, and buying and selling votes. Under
          the Constitution there are all kinds of trade, traffic, and
          commerce carried on a political view. The Constitution now serves
          but little purpose other than a cloak for political gamblers,
          merchants, and hucksters.
          The Almighty looks down from heaven and sees it impossible to
          save the Constitution, to perpetuate it, and cleanse and purify
          it; for the wickedness of the people is determined to sweep it
          out of the way. Although it was framed by his wisdom and skill,
          and his power and goodness, yet with as much cheerfulness will it
          be overthrown as it was ever erected or framed. I presume that
          Titus, the Roman Emperor, when he entered Jerusalem, when he
          overthrew the temple and the city, was inspired by the Devil as
          much to do it, as perhaps, Solomon was by the Lord to build it,
          or those that did build it, because it had fulfilled its day and
          its work, and had become corrupted and impure, and was the place
          in which corruption was practised; and he would sweep it away. It
          is sometimes the case that in a city where a house of ill fame is
          kept, the people will turn out and demolish the house. It is not
          because they have an antipathy against the house, but because it
          was the cover in which abominations were practised, and they will
          not bear it, and they turn out once in a while and tear down the
          house. We do not suppose the Almighty had anything against the
          temple; but it was a place of resort for corrupt characters, and
          he was determined to dispense with them by destroying their
          haunts of iniquity. We do not suppose the Almighty has anything
          against the Constitution; but it serves as a kind of cover under
          which corrupt characters hide themselves and attempt to carry on
          all kinds of barter and traffic in relation to politics; and the
          Almighty is determined to uncover and expose them.
          What Constitution shall we be governed by, when unprincipled men
          have destroyed the Constitution of our Union? I will tell you
          what we shall have: while we walk in the favour of God, we shall
          have a Constitution. The Constitution written in the Bible? No.
          In the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, or Book of Mormon? No.
          What kind shall we have, then? The Constitution that God will
          give us. Do you suppose that Joseph Smith was permitted to be
          killed because the Almighty had anything against him? No. But he
          wanted the ungodly that rejected his testimony to fill up the cup
          of their iniquity; and hence they were permitted to take away his
          life, after he had accomplished the work he came to accomplish,
          and not before; they could not touch him before he had done the
          work he was sent to do--before he had laid the foundation of this
          kingdom. And when that was completed, he might be taken from the
          troubles of this world, that the ungodly might have the
          opportunity of filling up the cup of their iniquity. The blood of
          Joseph and Hyrum was shed--mingled too with the blood of brother
          Taylor, who survived, and who is here a living witness to the
          facts the occurred in connection with their death. Has the nation
          atoned for that blood? No. Have they offered to do it? They never
          have. But if one poor scamp should happened to be killed in this
          country, in this region, the whole of the United States are ready
          to fly to arms to avenge the blood of that individual, that never
          was worth the powder and lead to kill him. But the Prophets of
          God that are inspired of the Almighty to do a work for the
          benefit of the human family can be killed, and no man lay it to
          heart. Oh, it is all very well: to be sure, it was an outrageous
          deed to murder them when they were in the hands of the law--when
          they were held as prisoners; it was a horrid act: at the same
          time, we are glad it is done. That is the feeling, and the
          universal feeling almost throughout the United States. There was
          hardly a man, woman, or child that did not assent to the death of
          Joseph and Hyrum, but objected to the way in which it was done.
          "It is not exactly honourable or pleasing, but we are glad of it
          anyhow." That is the sentiment of the nation, and by that very
          sentiment they have drawn upon themselves the anger of God; and
          that blood has to be atoned for upon all those that have said, We
          are glad of it!--that have secretly said so and cherished that
          idea. It will extend to them all who have consented to the death
          of the Prophet of God.
          Now, says the Lord, "To him that overcometh will I give power
          over the nations." Did Joseph Smith overcome, even unto death?
          Yes. Was God with him? Yes, he was. When they were about to cut
          off his head, behold, the power of the Almighty came down, and
          the men stood as it were like marble statues: they could not
          move, but stood there like Lot's wife--not pillars of salt, but
          pillars of petrified corruption. The power of the Almighty came
          down with the vivid glare of lightning's flash, and they had not
          power to take his head off. Was God with him? Yes. Was his death
          glorious? Yes. What was his glory? One portion of it is--"To him
          that overcometh will I give power over the nations." A portion of
          his honour and glory will be to enforce his word and see it take
          effect among the people and nations that have said, We are glad
          that he is killed! They cannot avoid it by going through death.
          They will have to be arraigned under the government and
          jurisdiction of their murdered victims.
          When we pass a law in the Legislature, and say that it is the law
          by our acts, we also say that all laws and parts of laws
          conflicting herewith are repealed from this time henceforth. When
          Joseph takes his position, all laws and parts of laws that shall
          conflict at all with him are hereby repealed, and his word, and
          his law will be the end of strifes. There is no dodging it, and I
          feel thankful for it. Well, brethren and sisters, let it be our
          happy lot and our ambition so to live before our God and our
          superiors that have gone before us, that they may take pleasure
          in saying to us, "Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast
          been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many
          things." I tell you, Joseph holds the keys and none of us can get
          into the celestial kingdom without passing by him. We have not
          got rid of him, but he stands there as the sentinel, holding the
          keys of the kingdom of God; and there are many of them beside
          him. I tell you, if we get past those who have mingled with us,
          and know us best, and have a right to know us best, probably we
          can pass all other sentinels as far as it is necessary, or as far
          as we may desire. But I tell you, the pinch will be with those
          that have mingled with us, stood next to us, weighed our spirits,
          tried us, and proven us: there will be a pinch, in my view, to
          get past them. The others, perhaps, will say, If brother Joseph
          is satisfied with you, you may pass. If it is all right with him,
          it is all right with me. Then if Joseph shall say to a man, or if
          brother Brigham say to a man, I forgive you your sins, "Whosoever
          sins ye remit they are remitted unto them;" if you who have
          suffered and felt the weight of transgression--if you have
          generosity enough to forgive the sinner, I will forgive him: you
          cannot have more generosity that I have. I have given you power
          to forgive sins, and when the Lord gives a gift, he does not take
          it back again. When he bestows a power, he does not diminish it,
          unless it is through transgression in the individual to whom this
          authority is given; but if he increases in righteousness, the
          Lord will add to it, instead of taking away. We see the position
          that brother Joseph stands in; we see that he has overcome, and
          that he has power over the nation. Now, brethren and sisters,
          don't you think that brother Joseph feels for this people--feels
          an interest for us? Has he overcome, or has he not? We all say
          yes, he has, by the word of the Lord, by the truth of heaven, and
          by the word of his testimony. He has laid down his life for his
          brethren; and greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay
          down his life for his friends. He has overcome? Yes. Then has he
          power over the nation? Yes. Does he love that people that killed
          him? No: he feels towards them as the Lord does, who is angry
          with the wicked every day, yet he does not sin. What shall he do
          with them? Break them to pieces as a potter's vessel. Then the
          love that he has for this people and the anger that he feels
          towards the ungodly will be seen and felt by all classes; and if
          he has power over the nation, will he not exert it? He is armed
          with this power, which is reason sufficient why he should exert
          it in favour of his friends. Then we have no reason to fear.
          When a man overcomes, he has power over the nation. I tell you we
          have no reason to fear, if we are friends to that individual.
          They thought, if they could kill Joseph and Hyrum, they would get
          the ascendancy, and that it would be an end of "Mormonism".
          Do you not see that every means they devised for their own safety
          is so many steps towards their overthrow? They could not have
          struck a more fatal blow for themselves that when the murdered
          Joseph and Hyrum, because it made them rulers over their enemies;
          and by this bloody act they sealed, nailed, and clenched their
          own doom and there is now no possible chance of deliverance.
          It is just so with our enemies at this time: if they let us
          alone, we will prosper; and if they don't, we will prosper the
          faster and bring them under subjection the sooner. That is just
          the way our heavenly Father will overrule it, if we live to his
          honour and glory.
          Now, we have the living law. The voice of brother Brigham is
          heard from day to day and from time to time, and also the voices
          of his Counsellors, who are to him as Aaron and Hur were to
          Moses, lifting up his hands in the midst of the congregation, and
          sustaining and upholding him while his voice pours out the mind
          and will of God unto us. That is the law by which we are
          governed; and if we abide it, we have no need to transcend our
          Constitutional rights. In that we are safe, if we will honour and
          abide by it; and it is the only safe law and protecting power
          that will shield and screen us in the day of adversity and trial.
          As Joseph stood to the people in his day, so do brother Brigham
          and his Counsellors stand to the people in our day. Now, then,
          provided we can secure the favour, friendship, and goodwill of
          them that hold the keys of the kingdom in our day, it will be all
          right. Suppose some of us did really sin and transgress in the
          days of Joseph, in our darkness and ignorance, in our stupidity
          and blindness, and grieve the Holy Spirit and the spirit of
          Joseph: he is dead and we are living; and by-and-by brother
          Brigham comes up before Joseph. "Well," says Joseph, "How did
          those ones get along in your day? Have they improved any? Have
          they done right even in your day, and secured your confidence and
          goodwill?" "Oh, yes," says brother Brigham; "they have done well
          in my day. We have had no trouble with them: they have kept my
          word." Says Joseph, "If you can speak in their favour, I will not
          interpose any objections.
          It is for us, brethren and sisters, to secure the goodwill of
          those that hold the keys of the kingdom here. We do not care what
          they think outside of us. We ask no odds of them: they may think
          what they please. If we can only get the goodwill, faith, and
          love of our brethren that preside over us, we shall not need the
          encomiums of the ungodly.
          If we can get the goodwill of them that preside over us in our
          day, they will speak a good word for us. If you, Bishops, have a
          man in your wards that has been refractory and is put under your
          jurisdiction, the President calls upon you and asks, "How does
          that man get along?" First rate: he is easily governed and
          controlled." Says the President, "I am glad to hear it; I am glad
          he is getting along so well, and hope and trust he will continue
          to do so: he has my goodwill." If we can secure that friendship,
          goodwill, and confidence of those who preside over us, and merit
          it, (mark you, and we shall not get it without we do,) the fact
          is, it will be their pleasure to speak a good word to Joseph for
          us, and also to others that have gone before, Is there a Bishop
          under the sound of my voice now that would not esteem it a
          pleasure to bear testimony in favour of a man for his good
          conduct, if he had been rebellious and had reformed under his
          administration? No. Let us remember these things, brethren.
          The men that God has placed in our midst let us sustain like the
          two counsellors of Moses, Aaron, and Hur, who held up the hand of
          Moses. Let us honour that word that comes from the Prophet of
          God. He holds the keys of the kingdom. He is the true successor
          of Joseph, and he will have power over the nation, either in life
          or in death: it is immaterial to him. When brother Brigham goes
          and joins with Joseph, it will be said, "Oh, we are one, just as
          we always were; and here come his counsellors: they are one, and
          they increase the strength and power of the Priesthood beyond the
          vail. It is for us to uphold these men in every condition.
          Do we ever eat a meal of victuals without asking God to bless it?
          We do not, if we do right; for we ought to have grateful hearts
          all the time, and ask God to bless every gift he bestows upon us,
          and thank him for it. And when we pray, can we pray without
          remembering the power that bears us up? If I were going to climb
          upon a scaffold, and I thought it weak, I would strengthen it
          before I ventured upon it. I do not want to venture upon it
          unless I know it is strong. If I put forth my powers in behalf of
          it and strengthen it, then I know it is strong. If I never pray
          for that power, and feel no interest in it, I will never venture
          upon it. But if I have an interest there, I will strengthen that
          power; and when I do, I can venture on it.
          The Presidency are like an arch with a keystone in the top of it.
          The greater weight you put upon it, the stronger it is. It is
          sometimes the case that the arch falls, but it is when no weight
          is upon it; but when you put a hundred thousand pounds weight
          upon it, it is better bound together and stands the more firmly.
          So, if we sustain that power by our prayers and faith, we may put
          everything on it,--not everything for them to do, we do not mean,
          but the weight of responsibility in dictating the affairs of the
          kingdom. We may trust them with safety and confidence, because we
          have contributed to make the abutments permanent and strong, and
          now we may venture with assurance.
          The grand secret we shall find to be, when we get through, that
          these are gods unto us, and there are millions of them beside;
          but they have but little to do with us. It is the power that is
          next to us that we have to do with more particularly--the power
          under whose jurisdiction we are immediately brought.
          Some think they can run by their Bishops and disrespect their
          authority. They may think, "Only let me make it fair with the
          President, and it will be all right; I have the sanction of the
          highest authority." You might have the sanction of the head; but
          if the head had not feet to stand on, that sanction would not be
          of much worth.
          Just so, we should seek to have the sanction of those that are
          immediately over us by our upright conduct. How can we love those
          whom we do not see once a month, or once in six months, if we
          love not our Bishop whom we see daily.
          Some men think, if they can have a good name abroad and with the
          Presidency, all is well. But at home, in our own houses, in our
          Wards, and with our immediate neighbours are the places to
          establish our reputation. I tell you, if there is not a good
          influence in our own neighbourhood, among our own ward people in
          our favour, there is not a good influence anywhere for us, except
          with the reprobate. When you find a man or woman that has a good
          influence in their own Ward with their own Bishop--a good name
          with their own neighbours, they have a good name everywhere.
          When the rays of light come from the sun, we say they are
          glorious, just as far as those rays extend. It is the same glory
          and the same influence, and it is the same power. Just so it is
          if all is right at home; if we have the respect and confidence of
          our own domestic fireside friends, we have the respect and
          confidence of all whose respect is worth possessing.
          Some may think, if they can only keep fair weather with their
          Bishop and neighbours, it is no matter how they live at home,
          whether they neglect their affairs and quarrel like cats and dogs
          or not, if they can only pull the wool over the Bishop's eyes.
          If we have a little hell in our own houses, that little hell will
          be sure to break out. We close the sepulchre, and roll a stone
          there, and seal it with the seal of State, and confine it just as
          closely as we please; but the contents will escape. Even so with
          any family: their conduct will be known, and they cannot suppress
          it, nor confine it to their own domiciles. Let us have no kind of
          jars at all: let us make everything right at home, at the real
          seat of government, to begin with.
          If they should have a little difficulty among the troops out here
          in Utah, so far from the seat of Government in Washington, it
          would have but little effect a head-quarters. But when
          contention, strife, and war break out in the halls of Congress,
          it then becomes something; and such kind of difficulty I pray
          God, in the name of Jesus, to let them have right at home, at the
          seat of empire because they have sought to destroy the kingdom of
          God; and it is the same spirit that moved Herod to slay the
          infant children. God grant they may be smitten with worms, as was
          Herod, or anything else that seemeth him good, and defeat their
          intentions and designs.
          If we can make it all right in our families, there is the place
          of government. Govern the tongue right in our own families. I
          know it is sometimes the case that a person will see a chance to
          slip in a word that will cut like a razor. "Oh, that is too good
          a chance to let slip; therefore I will let fly a word," and it
          sets all hell on fire. I speak particularly in relation to some
          women; but I do not know that it is any more in relation to them
          than to some men. The woman sees a chance to give the man a keen
          word that will make him feel; but she sours her own dish by so
          doing. She turns the sweet into gall, and then is compelled to
          eat it.
          What is the better way? If she sees a chance to inflict a wound
          by a word that will cut, and she thinks her husband really
          deserves it, which is the sure way to get a victory? Never say
          that word! Say the women, "If we can have no protection, shall we
          say nothing at all?" Let it pass, I tell you; take it mildly; and
          by-and-by, says the husband, "I grieved by wife, and gave her
          just cause of offence. I am sorry for it; she has taken it so
          meekly, and never has harrassed by feelings. Now, this cuts me
          ten time worse than if she had said something to balance the
          matter: then I should not have had this sting in my heart. But to
          see her take it so mildly without offering one reproach, O my
          God, how can I forgive myself?"
          When you get a victory in that way, it is worth something. It is
          like getting a victory over our enemies by not firing a gun nor
          molesting them, only praying for them all the time. By-and-by
          they will come under conviction, and see all these things, and
          say, "O my God, can I ever forgive myself? We are whipt, and they
          have never done a thing."
          You may get a victory over your husbands all the time by praying
          for them, not exactly as we pray for our friends out yonder; but
          pray for them, and never do a thing to harm them, and by-and-by
          you will gain the victory; and I tell you that will count. Try
          this plan and see.
          I do not feel like occupying more of your time. You have my best
          feelings and prayers, night and day, that God may bless you, and
          the land for our sake, and that he will clear our coast of
          enemies, and place a flaming sword to guard the way of the tree
          of life, that in the valley may grow, being watered by the
          streams from the mountains until it becomes a great tree. This is
          what I desire and pray for.
          May God bless you and our leaders and give us favour in their
          eyes, that we may grow up under their fostering care, that we may
          be prepared to act in every place where Providence may guide us,
          and be ready to act well our part from this time henceforth and
          for ever. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / George
          Albert Smith, January 3, 1858
                        George Albert Smith, January 3, 1858
                            CHANNEL OF DIVINE REVELATION.
              Remarks by Elder George A. Smith, made in the Tabernacle,
                       Great Salt Lake City, January 3, 1858.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          We have listened to a very interesting course of instructions,
          which if treasured up in our hearts and properly practised, must
          do us all good. It is of the utmost importance to our welfare in
          the kingdom of the Most High that we commence and learn to govern
          ourselves; and when this lesson is learned, then we are prepared
          to govern others. Unless we can govern ourselves, we are
          unprepared to be governed in the way that the kingdom of God is
          to be ruled and directed, which is to be upon the principle of
          common consent. It is not that a majority shall rule, but that
          the people shall be agreed; and when all the people are agreed as
          touching any one thing in the kingdom of God, no power can resist
          The world look upon us a though we are tyrannized over because
          they do not know the principles upon which we act. In all our
          Conferences and Councils, this people should act as a unit, and
          have done so to a greater extent than any other people that have
          existed on the earth for a great many centuries. This has
          astonished even republicans. It is astonishing to many men to
          think that a people can all be agreed; and I have read
          professedly learned illustrations of republicanism, which declare
          that it is attended with great danger for the people all to be
          united. There is danger of their being united, lest they oppress
          somebody--that is, themselves.
          In conversation, last winter, with ex-Governor Lane, of Oregon,
          (then a delegate in Congress,) on this principle, I told him of
          an election which occurred in one of our new counties, where the
          office of Sheriff was vacant, and by accident there were two
          candidates and a close contest. He said, "That is an evidence of
          If every person in a family can learn to be governed, there will
          be no difficulty in that family. And if every person in a Ward
          can learn to govern and control themselves, there will be no
          difficulty in that Ward; for the human mind is so constituted
          that this principle cannot be learned only by the observance of
          the principles of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Now, there is not
          other people upon the face of the earth that could live in these
          valleys and cultivate and irrigate the soil as we do. They have
          so little control of their disposition and of their temper, they
          would kill each other with their hoes over the water ditches.
          There could not be two, three, or forty owners in a water ditch
          without fighting. It takes pretty good Saints to get along with
          water ditches in a dry time, and not quarrel.
          When this people live as they should, there will be no
          disposition in them to quarrel one with another. If anything is
          wrong, they will be ready to submit that wrong to be made
          straight by those who understand it better than they do. If any
          misunderstanding arises, it can easily be adjusted. But, with our
          views, prejudices, and traditions, we are all the time struggling
          with ourselves and our own peculiar notions. Every person has in
          his own brain a series of ideas implanted from early youth, which
          he considers to be right; and it is a very hard matter for us to
          relinquish these deeply-implanted traditions, which in nine cases
          out of ten are not right.
          Now, from the early history of this Church, almost every man,
          every Elder, or member that has undertaken to study or practise
          law was in a very short time on the high road to apostasy and
          destruction; and every member of this Church who has undertaken
          to practise law as a profession has gone neck-and-heels to the
          Devil. What is the reason of this? They take up the opinions of
          men that wrote perhaps hundreds of years ago, and lay them down
          as a standard, drive them down as stakes, and then tie themselves
          to them, and they are immediately in a peck measure: their minds
          are contracted to the circumference of a peck measure, and they
          are a good deal in the condition that a gentleman was, by the
          name of Silly, who kept a tavern. There was an emminent
          Presbyterian minister who called on him, by the name of Peck.
          Silly thought he would joke the minister before the company at
          the dinner table, and said to him, "Mr. Peck, I believe it takes
          two pecks to make a half-bushel." "Yes, sir; but it only takes
          one silly to make a fool." So it only just takes one of those
          "Mormon" lawyers to make a fool.
          Instead of taking up the subject as it exists, and enquiring what
          is right or wrong, they adopt the Gentile mode of undertaking to
          carry a point, right or wrong; and no Elder of Israel can
          undertake to carry a point, right or wrong, just or unjust, and
          stand up and defend injustice, falsehood, and corruption, without
          losing the Spirit of God; and it only takes one such a man to
          make a fool.
          Trace over the history of apostates, and you will find that in
          almost every instance they lay down a standard rule--that is to
          say, "Thus far will we go, and no farther." For instance, we will
          take the Bible, Book of Mormon, and Doctrine and Covenants, and
          say concerning them, They are true--the rule and guide of our
          faith and practice; they are the law we must abide, and we must
          go no further; and so their light is blown out. Although these
          books are true, and there are many good instructions in them, by
          which we may learn the way of life, yet the very moment we tie
          ourselves to them and say we will receive nothing more, from that
          moment our light is extinguished, and we are inside the peck
          Go back to the early history of the Christian Church, and you
          find that the very moment the institutions of Jesus Christ and
          his Apostles were presented to the world, men began to speculate
          and philosophize on them, and to distribute them into different
          parts, and speculate on them, adopting their own wisdom for the
          wisdom of God. Instead of observing strictly the original
          principles of salvation, and keeping the light always
          blazing--keeping the spirit of revelation always burning--keeping
          the spirit of truth, the lamp of light, and communications from
          the Almighty continually flowing, they adopted a little of that
          they had received which suited their vain notions, saying, "We
          have enough, and upon this we will build."
          The very moment that revelation to this Church through our
          Prophet and Presidency ceases to be communicated unto us, and we
          adopt any series of books, whether the writings of Joseph or the
          writings of any other man, or all the writings and revelations
          that ever have been given, and say, This much we receive, and no
          more; then we are as dead as the lifeless corpse: we cut off the
          channel of revelation, and the light and the communication
          between us and eternal happiness; we cut asunder the thread of
          light, and we are in darkness and adrift at sea, without a
          compass to guide us, like any other religious denomination. Hence
          it is that we bear testimony of the fulness of the Gospel and of
          the Priesthood conferred upon Joseph Smith, and conferred upon
          our Prophet and President Brigham Young, and all the authorities
          of Israel in their sphere and in their standing and position.
          I know that this Priesthood is true and is the authority by which
          we can claim and obtain from God this burning light until the day
          dawn and the day star arise.
          Now, if I could not get up here and bear testimony that we are
          led by the power and instruction of the Spirit of prophecy--by
          the Spirit of the Almighty--by a Prophet called of God, ordained
          and chosen to instruct, teach, and lead us, you would never hear
          my voice in your midst. But that light never can be put out: it
          is with the Church, and God has set his hand at the present time
          to establish his kingdom. But unless the Saints will so live and
          so exert themselves that they can preserve the purity of the holy
          Priesthood among them, the work will be left to other people.
          There is not opportunity for a halfway place: it is impossible.
          Men may think they can lie a little, blaspheme a little, get
          drunk a little, or do a thousand other mean things just a little,
          and yet be the servants of God. But is we would inherit the
          blessings of the Priesthood--if we would stand in the presence of
          the Almighty--stand upon Mount Zion and inherit the blessings of
          a glorious celestial dominion, we have got to be clean: we must
          cleanse ourselves, put away our follies, and be prepared to stand
          A great many people have wondered why it was that it was
          necessary for the Saints to gather together. The fact is, the
          human mind is so weak--so susceptible of false impressions, that
          while the people of God were scattered in the nations of the
          earth, to come in contact with all the corruptions, prejudices,
          and traditions of the world, it was literally impossible for the
          human mind to resist these pressures. But by bringing our
          firebrands from every part of the world, gathering them from
          every nation, kindred, tongue, and people, and placing them
          together in one mighty heap, and exercising ourselves with
          diligence to cast out everything that is not right,--by doing
          this we kindle a fire that can never be extinguished.
          This is the work of God, and the servants of God that are called
          to preside over us are the messengers of the Most High, and they
          have the light and the power. It matters not whether we live to
          behold it in this life or not, that light will triumph; and all
          those who live humble and keep the commandments of God will
          triumph also. This is my testimony. We need not fear the armies
          of the Gentiles.
          From the very hour that the light began to shine, all the world
          has been trying to put it out; but the more they try to
          extinguish it the brighter it will shine; and it will blaze and
          burn, and it will go forth and will consume out of our midst all
          those that work iniquity; and Zion will be established in its
          purity, no more to be thrown down.
          It is of no use to be discouraged or alarmed. We may have to
          sacrifice some of our habits, some of our comforts, and some
          necessaries; but then it will wake us up to supply our own wants.
          If our enemies should stop the importation of goods, deprive us
          of the means of exporting all the gold an silver we can
          accumulate, we will retain it among ourselves, and turn in and
          produce for ourselves. The greatest sermon that ever has been
          preached in these mountains in aid of home manufactures was that
          preached by General Johnston, when he told the merchants on
          Black's Fork that if they undertook to carry their goods to Salt
          Lake, he would set their train on fire. If they will keep their
          traps away, we will produce our own, and then we shall have them,
          and they will be our own, and we shall be independent, and we
          will fulfil the commandment given to the Church through
          Joseph--"Let all thy garments be plain, and their beauty the
          beauty of the work of thine own hands."
          May God bless us, and enable us to do right in all things, is my
          prayer, in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / John
          Taylor, January 17, 1858
                            John Taylor, January 17, 1858
                                     BENEFIT OF
           A Discourse by Elder John Taylor, delivered in the Tabernacle,
               Great Salt Lake City, Sunday Morning, January 17, 1858.
                               Reported by J. V. Long.
          I feel that we are all of us in the hands of God, that we are all
          associated with this kingdom, and that if any people under the
          face of the heavens can be properly called "the Saints of the
          Most High," we are that people. It certainly is a prominent
          position, a great title, an endearing relationship that we
          sustain to the Lord, if we really magnify our calling and honour
          our God.
          When we reflect upon the myriads of human beings that crowd the
          earth in every nation, country, and clime, and then consider that
          we are the only people that do really "acknowledge the hand of
          God in all things;" that we are the only people that God has
          chosen and selected to place his name among; that we are the only
          people that can emphatically be called the servants and
          handmaidens of the Lord; that we are the only people that have a
          right and claim upon the promises of God; that we are the only
          people that entertain correct ideas pertaining to our present
          position and our future destiny; that we are the only people that
          can stretch back to ages that are past, and look forward to those
          that are to come, and that can act understandingly in relation to
          our worship and the ordinances of the house of God, having a
          knowledge of the past, the present, and the future; that we are
          the only people under the heavens that have a legitimate right to
          the promises and blessings of God, whether they relate to this
          world or that which is to come; that we are the only people that
          understand anything about the present position or the cause of
          the organization of the world and of man, and that understand
          anything correctly about the preparation for a future state; that
          we are the only people that know how to save our progenitors, how
          to save ourselves, and how to save our posterity in the celestial
          kingdom of God; that we are the people that God has chosen by
          whom to establish his kingdom and introduce correct principles
          into the world; and that we in fact are the saviours of the
          world, if they ever are saved;--when we reflect upon these
          things, there is something connected with them that is calculated
          to make our hearts swell with gratitude and thrill with joy; and
          when we feel the consoling influence of the Spirit of the Most
          High God resting upon us and round about us, and the visions and
          glories of the future that we are destined to enjoy are open to
          our minds, if we are faithful, and the great events that are
          about to transpire in the last days are manifested to our minds,
          there is something in them that is calculated to cause us to
          sing, Hosanna!--hosanna to the Lord God of Hosts!
          There is something in these reflections pleasing, enlivening,
          animating, cheering, and something that is calculated to cause
          joy and rejoicing in the soul.
          If we look abroad in the world, what are their enjoyments and
          hopes? They say, in effect, "Let us eat and drink, for to-morrow
          we die." They say, "Give us gold, give us riches, give us honour,
          and give us the pomp, glory, and glitter of this world? Let us
          have our day now, for we know very little about the future. Let
          us enjoy life while we can." These are their feelings, and hence
          they riot in every excess and wallow in lasciviousness and
          debauchery. They corrupt their bodies, debase their minds, and
          they are not fit receptacles for the Spirit of the living God;
          nor have they any among them that are capable of teaching them
          anything about that Spirit; but they are in the dark.
          When we reflect upon these things, have we not something to be
          thankful for? Have we not cause of gratitude to the Most High
          God? I think we have; and I think, if any people are blessed
          under the heavens, we are that people; and we may exclaim, as the
          ancient Israelites used to, "Happy is that people whose God is
          the Lord."
          It certainly is a lamentable thing, when we come to reflect upon
          it, to see so many of the human family ignorant and careless,
          knowing nothing about God--knowing nothing of their origin or
          destiny. What has the Lord done for us? He has opened the
          heavens, and has revealed the principles of truth. He has sent
          his holy angels to communicate unto the children of men the
          things that are calculated to promote their peace and happiness
          in time and throughout all eternity. He has given unto us, his
          people, the holy Priesthood after the order of Melchizedek, which
          "holds the keys of the mysteries of the revelations of God,"
          which draws back the curtains of the invisible world, and enables
          him to penetrate beyond the vail, and discloses the great
          purposes of Jehovah pertaining to himself and to this world, as
          they shall roll forth in the accomplishment of his purposes.
          What a contrast between this and the religion of the world! This
          shows man imperfectly at the present, it is true; but it will
          show him perfectly how to become a saviour--how to redeem this
          world, which has been overrun with anarchy, destruction, misery,
          folly, and evils of every kind,--how to redeem the world from the
          curse under which it labours and groans: it will show him how to
          teach the human family, that they may understand correct
          principles and be saved in the kingdom of God.
          The religion of Jesus Christ will develop the plan of putting
          down the high-handed power of tyranny and oppression which now
          pervades the earth, and how to establish the principles of peace,
          righteousness, and virtue upon the earth, and how to place the
          world of mankind in that position which God has destined they
          should occupy when his kingdom shall rule upon the earth, and
          when "every creature in heaven, on earth, and under the earth
          shall be heard to say, Blessing, honour, and glory, and power be
          unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb, for
          ever and ever."
          The germs of this peace are with us; the intelligence concerning
          these matters has begun to be developed, and there is a
          communication opened between the heavens and the earth--an
          unction that dwells with the Gods, an intelligence that governs
          all worlds and controls all nature, a particle--a spark of Deity
          straight from the eternal blaze of Jehovah, opening, unfolding,
          enlightening, and teaching. It emanates from him to the
          authorities of this Church, and flows through all the
          ramifications of the Priesthood. That spark from the bosom of
          Jehovah enabled them to commence that reformation that will
          redeem a world from the ruins of the fall.
          This kingdom and this organization will save all that are
          governed by its principles, and it is destined by its influence
          and workings in the world to spread and increase until every knee
          shall be made to bow and every tongue confess to the glory of the
          These principles have begun to be developed among us; and when we
          live our religion, when we walk according to the light of the
          Spirit of God, when we purge ourselves from impurity and
          corruption, and the sweet whisperings of the Spirit of the Lord
          pours intelligence into our bosoms, broods over us, causing peace
          and joy to be with us, we have then, more or less, a faint
          glimpse of those things that are laid up for the faithful; and it
          is then we feel as though we and all that we have are in the
          hands of the Lord, and that we are ready to offer ourselves a
          sacrifice for the accomplishment of his purposes upon the earth.
          These are our feelings, and we feel proud of our associations
          with the Church and kingdom of God. Why is it that our spirits
          are not always joyous? There may be different reasons. One reason
          is that we do not always live our religion. We give way to
          vanity, frivolity, and nonsense too much, and sometimes to
          dishonesty and fraud; we do things that are not right and adopt
          practices that are not good; and when this is the case, the
          Spirit of the Lord is grieved, and it wanders from us, and we are
          left to grope in the dark; the visions of eternity are shut out
          from our minds, and we see through another medium than that of
          the Spirit of God. We are led, through these circumstances, to
          stumble and fall; and many make shipwreck of faith and of a good
          We do not all of us sufficiently comprehend the great blessings
          that God has conferred upon us. We forget, sometimes, that we are
          the Saints of God; we forget that we have dedicated ourselves to
          the Lord, with all that we have; and we forget our high calling
          and our future destiny. We forget, sometimes, that we are
          engaged, with many others, in establishing righteousness and
          planting the kingdom of God upon the earth; and we condescend to
          little meannesses, and become forgetful of the great and glorious
          calling to which we are called. Many of us give way to
          temptation; we falter and get into darkness, and lose the Spirit
          of the Lord. We forget that God and angels are looking upon us;
          we forget that the spirits of just men made perfect and our
          ancient fathers, who are looking forward for the establishment of
          the kingdom of God upon the earth, are gazing upon us, and that
          our acts are open to the inspection of all the authorized
          agencies of the invisible world.
          And, forgetting these things sometimes, we act the part of fools,
          and the Spirit of God is grieved; it withdraws from us, and we
          are then left to grope our way in the dark. But if we could live
          our religion, fear God, be strictly honest, observe his laws and
          his statutes, and keep his commandments to do them, we should
          feel comfortable and happy; our spirits would be peaceful and
          buoyant; and from day to day, from week to week, and from year to
          year, our joys would increase.
          Other causes also operate to retard the Saints in their progress.
          Most of us have come out of and been mixed up with the world; we
          have been associated with, and have received our education and
          ideas in the midst of corruptions of every kind, and we have
          sucked it in as with our mother's milk.
          Even our religion has been corrupt, and our ideas of morality
          have been wrong; our politics, law, and philosophy have all been
          wrenched, twisted, and perverted; our customs, habits, and
          associates have been wrong; and all that we have come out from is
          vanity, evil, corrupting, and damnable in its nature.
           Is it surprising, then, that we should find it difficult to live
          according to the light and intelligence that dwells in the bosom
          of God and that is manifested partially unto us, his people? Is
          it surprising that, surrounded as we have been, and wallowing in
          corruption all the day long, that we should have partaken more or
          less of these things, and that they should still cling to us?
          When Joseph Smith had anything from God to communicate to the
          children of men or to the Church, what was it he had to fight
          against all the day long? It was the prejudices of the people;
          and, in many instances, he could not and dared not reveal the
          word of God to the people, for fear they would rise up and reject
          it. How many times has he faltered? It was not that he was
          particularly afraid; but he had to look after the welfare and
          salvation of the people.
          If the Prophet Joseph had revealed everything which the Lord
          manifested to him, it would have proven the overthrow of the
          people in many instances; hence he had to treat them like
          children, and feed them upon milk, and unfold principles
          gradually, just as they could receive them.
          Was all this because it was so hard to comprehend correct
          principles? No; it was because we were babes and children, and
          could not understand.
          How is it now, under the administration of President Young? Much
          the same, in this respect. He has often found it very difficult
          to make the people understand things as the Lord has revealed
          them unto him.
          We ourselves have not got rid of our evils. We have so much
          professed righteousness and foolish tradition within us, that we
          feel indignant many times at righteous principles, when God
          reveals them. Have you not felt so, brethren and sisters? I know
          you have, and you know you have.
          What is the reason of this? It is because you do not understand
          celestial laws, nor the principles that govern intelligences in
          the eternal worlds; it is because you do not understand what is
          best calculated to elevate, ennoble, and exalt you both in this
          world and in the world to come; and hence many falter and stumble
          and fall by the way.
          In consequence of these things, we are frequently brought into
          darkness, bondage, and doubts, because of our consummate
          ignorance and the traditions by which we have been surrounded for
          they all have their influence upon us, and it seems as if we
          could not break through the shackles again. There is something in
          our nature also that is mixed up with our very existence. I think
          the Scriptures say that man is prone to evil as the sparks fly
          upwards, and not only prone to evil, but to depart from God.
          We are all aiming at celestial glory. Don't you know we are? We
          are talking about it, and we talk about being kings and priests
          unto the Lord; we talk about being enthroned in the kingdoms of
          our God; we talk about being queens and priestesses; and we talk,
          when we get on our high-heeled shoes, about possessing thrones,
          principalities, power, and dominions in the eternal worlds, when
          at the same time many of us do not know how to conduct ourselves
          any better than a donkey does.
          Notwithstanding our talk and our short comings, there is a
          reality in these things, and God is determined, if possible, to
          make something of us. In order to do this, he has to try us and
          prove us, to manifest principles unto us, to develop the evils
          that are within ourselves, and to show us, by placing us in
          various positions and subjecting us to various trials, what we
          are,--to show us our weaknesses and follies, in order that we may
          be made to lean and depend upon him alone. He will try men and
          prove them, to see if their hearts are pure; for he designs to
          take a course with us that will bring out the evil; and he will
          touch them in that part that will develop it, for he knows that
          part to touch in order to make us develop that which is in us.
          Many of us feel like one of the kings of Israel did when the old
          Prophet told him he would fight against Israel, rip open women,
          and trample upon children. The king said, "Is thy servant a dog,
          that he should do these things?" The Spirit of God in the Prophet
          knew that such would be the case, that it was not long before he
          did the very things. And there are many of you who, if you had
          been told that you would do such and such things, would have
          exclaimed, "Is they servant a dog, that he should do these
          things?" Yet, many of you have done things that you would have
          been ashamed to have your neighbours know; but you were not
          ashamed to have God and angels know.
          The light of the Holy Ghost makes manifest men's deeds, and the
          Spirit of God is like a "two-edged sword, dividing the joints and
          the marrow," breaking, severing, cutting, piercing, penetrating,
          developing, and unfolding principles that we are almost entirely
          ignorant of, until they come to be developed.
          When you have seen your ignorance and folly, you are inclined to
          say, "I thought I was a smart, good, able, intelligent man; but I
          have found out that I am a fool, and that I can do nothing to
          establish righteousness upon the earth, except the Lord God helps
          me to do it." When the Spirit of the living God was poured out
          more copiously upon you, it developed principles that were before
          latent within you. That Spirit enables you to see yourselves as
          the Lord sees you.
          No trial is joyous for the present but grievous to be borne; but
          trials yield their blessings, when patiently endured. The things
          that are seen are temporal, but those that are not seen are
          eternal; and while we look at things that are seen, we are apt to
          neglect things that are not seen. When we see things that are by
          the light of the Spirit, and compare them with things that are to
          come, we say, "It is the Lord; let him do what seemeth him good."
          The world has been apostate for generations past: it has been
          under the dominion of the prince and power of the air, even the
          god of this world, who rules in the hearts of the children of
          disobedience. As I have stated before, they have been wrong in
          political affairs, they have been wrong in their religion, and
          they have been wrong in everything.
          What is God going to do, to set the world right? We are the
          people who are called to do his work; and if so, he must put us
          right. We are a little nucleus, a mere handful, that he has
          selected from among the nations, to put his name among. Yes, we
          are that people, with all our faults, our foibles, and vanities.
          We do acknowledge the hand of God; we do acknowledge the Prophet
          of God and the teachings of the Most High, and we do feel willing
          to be governed by those teachings.
          Now, are we engaged in a small work? We are here in the tops of
          the mountains, just as the Prophet said we should be. "And it
          shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the
          Lord's house shall be established in the tops of the mountains,
          and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow
          unto it. And many people shall go and say, Come ye and let us go
          up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob;
          and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths:
          for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord
          from Jerusalem." (Isaiah ii. 2, 3.) The kingdom of God has to be
          established upon the earth, and the reign of righteousness
          We have first to learn submission to the will of God ourselves,
          through various trials, persecutions, and the development of our
          weaknesses and imperfections, and thereby learn to appreciate the
          goodness and blessings that flow from him. We must see that we
          ourselves first learn obedience, and then teach others. But how
          can we teach others a lesson which we have not learned ourselves?
          There is not nation now that acknowledges that hand of God; there
          is not a king, potentate, nor ruler that acknowledges his
          jurisdiction. We talk about Christianity, but it is a perfect
          pack of nonsense. Men talk about civilization; but I do not want
          to say much about that, for I have seen enough of it. Myself and
          hundreds of the Elders around me have seen its pomp, parade, and
          glory; and what is it? It is a sounding brass and a tinkling
          symbol; it is as corrupt as hell; and the Devil could not invent
          a better engine to spread his work that the Christianity of the
          nineteenth century.
          How are the nations going to be redeemed? How is the kingdom of
          God going to be planted upon the earth? Will it be by preaching,
          or by power? Will it be by the natural course of events, or by
          moral suasion? Will it be by the outpouring of the judgments of
          God on the nations? Will it be by kingdoms being overthrown and
          empires crumbling to ruins? How is it going to be done? I answer,
          These things will be accomplished by the guidance of the Lord
          through his Prophets who are in our midst. Don't you see this,
          How are we going to dispose of that army on our borders? Are they
          going to fight us, or are they going back? or what is going to be
          done? Now, who can tell us how these things shall be done? These
          are very small things, and show unto us the imperfection of our
          judgment, and how little we know of the things that are around
          us--how very little we know of those things that are coming to
          pass, except God reveals them through his servants the Prophets.
          If we pursue a right course and magnify our calling before God,
          then everything else will be right; for "surely the Lord God will
          do nothing, but he revealeth his secrets to his servants the
          Prophets." Then it is for us to believe what the Prophets say.
          Sectarians profess to believe in the Bible, but they will not let
          the Lord have any Prophets. But we will listen and try to keep
          the commandments of our God.
          I am now coming to some smaller things than those about which I
          have been talking. Can any of you tell me how you are going to
          get your next year's clothing? No man can be independent who is
          dependent upon others; no nations can be independent that is
          dependent upon another nation for its sustenance.
          Adam was thrust out of the garden after he fell, and had to take
          care of himself. Doubtless he was taught to spin, to weave, and
          to raise flax. We read that Abel used to raise sheep; so he must
          have known something about the use of wool. Cain was a tiller of
          the ground, and he went to work and raised wheat, corn, squashes,
          onions, beets, carrots, and such things.
          What had Adam to clothe himself with at first? We are told that
          he and his wife had fig-leaves with which they covered
          themselves. That was rather a poor scrape to be in! They did not
          have many bedclothes to put on, not many hats or bonnets. There
          were no merchants to sell, or manufacturers but themselves, in
          those days. We are certainly as well off as he was, for we have
          got a start; but we cannot be independent until we can make our
          own shoes, dresses, shawls, bonnets, pantaloons, hats, and all
          such things as we need. When we can do these things, raise our
          own food, manufacture everything we need among ourselves, then we
          shall be independent of other people.
          We have talked about being kings and priests; but we shall have
          to begin at the ABC, and learn to take care of our beef-hides,
          and see that they are tanned into good leather,--to take care of
          our sheep, and not let them be destroyed as they have been
          heretofore; and, in connection with all these things, we have to
          take care that we are Saints, and look sharply after the devils.
          A brother was talking to me about sheep, the other day. He stated
          that he believed 50 out of every 75 lambs in this territory have
          been destroyed for want of being better looked after.
          We have to make ourselves, our wives, and our children
          comfortable; and we must do this out of the elements that
          surround us in these valleys; and if we do not, we shall find the
          saying of Jesus applicable to us--"The children of this world are
          wiser in their generation than the children of light." Let us
          learn to take care of ourselves.
          While we are dependent upon others, we are in a poor position to
          look at the condition of the United States at the present time.
          We are happily preserved from their commercial troubles. Our very
          isolation preserves us from broken banks and ruinous credits. Let
          us only use our judgment and proper care and industry, and we
          shall be free from a thousand contingencies to which we are
          liable when we depend upon others.
          If we take care of our wheat, we shall be independent in that
          respect, and that will be one point gained; and we must continue
          doing so with every other thing, until we have gained every point
          and accomplish what we design.
               We have more manufacturing talent among us than there is in
          any other community of the same size that I have ever met with,
          and yet we are dependent.
          If the Lord will tell us what to do, we will do it, whether it is
          to fight armies or to do anything else; and by the ingenuity
          there is here, we will go to work and manufacture our own
          clothing; and, according to the word of the Lord, we will let our
          adorning be that of the workmanship of our own hands.
          Let us learn correct principles, that we may be enabled to govern
          ourselves spiritually and temporally, and instruct our children
          and the posterity which spring from us, that we may obtain an
          exaltation in the celestial kingdom of our God.
          The servants of God, if we are faithful, will teach and instruct
          us in the things of God; and we shall grow up in virtue,
          intelligence, holiness, and purity, and learn to understand
          correct laws; and our rulers will be from among ourselves, and
          our Governor will be one of us--one of the Lord's appointing--not
          of the Devil's.
          When Zion is established in her beauty and honour and glory, the
          kings and princes of the earth will come, in order that they may
          get information and teach the same to their people. They will
          come as they came to learn the wisdom of Solomon.
          We have intelligence and ingenuity among us to do all that is
          required, and we have got to set to work; and, as the Lord gives
          us wisdom and revelation from time to time, we will carry out his
          purposes and his designs; we will perform the duties that may be
          required of us, and we will magnify our callings, that we may be
          prepared, through a long course of instruction and experience, to
          enter into celestial glory with the intelligences who surround
          the throne of God.
          Brethren, I pray that God may bless us, enlighten our minds, and
          lead us in the way of truth, and save us in his kingdom, in the
          name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Brigham
          Young, January 17, 1858
              A Discourse by President Brigham Young, delivered in the
                       Great Salt Lake City, January 17, 1858.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          We have heard much in regard to knowledge and understanding of
          this people,--also of the nations of the earth; and it is very
          true that the best of us have only commenced to learn true
          principles. We are but children in the kingdom of God. We
          understand, in a great measure, the knowledge that is in the
          world: we have been brought up in the wisdom the world professes,
          and that we understand. But the things of God are so directly in
          opposition to the vain imaginations of the inhabitants of the
          earth, that it is hard for people to learn them. They remove our
          erroneous traditions from us. At the same time, all the morality,
          and good works, and good thoughts and words that tend to good,
          that are in the world, are of the Lord. Honest hearts, the world
          over, desire to know the right way. They have sought for it, and
          still seek it. There have been people upon the earth all the time
          who sought diligently with all their hearts to know the ways of
          the Lord. Those individuals have produced good, inasmuch as they
          had the ability. And to believe that there has been no virtue, no
          truth, no good upon the earth for centuries, until the Lord
          revealed the Priesthood through Joseph the Prophet, I should say
          is wrong. There has been more or less virtue and righteousness
          upon the earth at all times, from the days of Adam until now.
          That we all believe. Men who have lived without the Priesthood
          will be judged according to their works, as well as those who
          have had the privilege of it. That is our doctrine. That is what
          the Lord has told us, through his servants, from the beginning.
          No matter where they have lived, or to what nation they have
          belonged, all people will be judged according to the works or
          deeds done in the body.
          Honest hearts produce honest actions--holy desires produce
          corresponding outward works. That is what we understand and
          believe; yet the traditions of the fathers are so diverse from
          the holy Priesthood, that it is hard for people to learn even the
          smaller things pertaining to the kingdom of God--one of the
          smallest items pertaining to life. If we should have ability to
          sustain our selves here on the earth, we certainly should have to
          live; for if we have not the ability to live, we certainly should
          pass behind the vail. In that case, we could not be capable of
          doing good in our present organization. As you have often been
          told, and as we believe, good men and good women ought to live
          the longest on the earth and set good examples, teach good
          doctrines, and produce righteousness.
          Individuals or a community that have not the ability to preserve
          themselves in this life have no power to perform works to be
          judged by; consequently, there is no judgment passed upon them
          for deeds done in this probation. The duty of a good people is to
          know how to preserve themselves in this life. The first
          revelation given to Adam was of a temporal nature. Most of the
          revelations he received pertained to his life here. That was also
          the case in the revelations to Noah. We have but very few of the
          instructions the Lord gave to Enoch concerning his city; but,
          doubtless, most of the revelations he received pertained to a
          temporal nature and condition. And certainly the revelation Noah
          received, so far as in our possession, almost exclusively
          pertained to this life. The same principle was carried out in the
          days of Moses, and in the days of his fathers, Abraham, Isaac,
          and Jacob. We may say that eight or nine-tenths of the doctrines
          and principles set forth in the revelations given to those men
          were of a temporal nature.
          As soon as Moses was called upon to go and deliver Israel, the
          revelations the Lord gave to him were of a temporal nature,
          pertaining to the temporal life of the children of
          Israel--instructing Moses how to deliver them from bondage and
          lead them from the servile state in which they then were. He
          taught them in the same manner while they were travelling through
          the wilderness; and so it continued down to the days of the
          judges, and then to Saul, whom the Lord permitted them to make a
          king, and then through the teachings of the Prophets. The
          greatest recorded digression from that course was when the
          Saviour came. He repeatedly alluded to a spiritual kingdom, in
          his sayings to his brethren. The people had become so corrupt
          that it was all useless to then endeavour to establish a literal
          kingdom of God on the earth. The children of Abraham had wandered
          so far from the true doctrine, the Priesthood, the principles,
          and ordinances that the Lord had revealed, that the Saviour had
          not opportunity to more than drop a hint, as it were, about a
          temporal kingdom. Yet the idea of a temporal kingdom was so
          indelibly riveted upon the minds of his disciples, that they
          supposed he alluded to it, and that when the Saviour should make
          his appearance, he would actually establish a literal kingdom on
          this earth and reign over it. The institutions and traditions
          which had been handed down pertained to a temporal kingdom, and
          they could not see that the corruptions and wickedness of the
          people were so great that he could not teach or suggest anything
          that they could understand pertaining to a temporal kingdom;
          therefore he alluded to a spiritual kingdom--the kingdom of God
          that should be set up in the heart. And those principles taught
          to the people and received by them would gather them together in
          the latter days, when he could prepare and organize a literal
          kingdom on the earth.
          The first revelations given to Joseph were of a temporal
          character, pertaining to a literal kingdom on the earth. And most
          of the revelations he received in the early part of his ministry
          pertained to what the few around him should do in this or in that
          case--when and how they should perform their duties; at the same
          time calling upon them to preach the Gospel and diffuse the
          Spirit and principles of the kingdom of God, that their eyes
          might be open to see and gather the people together--that they
          might begin and organize a literal, temporal organization of the
          earth. All that has been done, and has been done by the wisdom of
          God. The wisdom revealed through Joseph was the wisdom of our
          Father in heaven,--it was not of himself.
          The revelations to us teach us to first cleanse our hearts--to
          purify ourselves, in order to have our eyes sufficiently opened
          to see that kingdom of God; for, without the spiritual birth
          referred to in the New Testament, we cannot see the kingdom of
          God. The revelations to Joseph were--Go forth, my servants,
          preach the Gospel by the power of the Holy Ghost, and open the
          eyes of the people, that they may see the kingdom of God, and not
          look into eternity to see the Father seated upon his throne and
          the angels around him, nor seek to know what he is doing there.
          The people need teaching by the power of the Holy Ghost sent down
          from heaven, that their eyes may be open to see that the Lord is
          commencing a literal kingdom upon the earth. When they can
          discern that, then they have the opportunity to be born of water,
          to enter into this kingdom. Nearly all the teachings to us
          pertain to this life; and if we have not ability to preserve our
          lives in our present existence, what can we do here to promote
          the kingdom of God on the earth; or to prepare the earth or the
          people for the coming of the Son of Man? Nothing. Consequently
          our labour is chiefly a temporal labour.
          Brother Taylor has enquired how we are to be clothed another
          year? We have either to obtain new clothes or to wear those we
          have now. Some one may say, "My clothes will not last another
          year." Perhaps they will, if you will take good care of them.
          When we first came here, the people were told, and many saw and
          believed it as much then as they can now, that the Lord in his
          providence led the people to these mountains to separate them
          from the Gentile world, in order that he might establish his
          kingdom--his laws, and commence his Zion in the mountains, where
          his people could have but little connection with the world. They
          were taught that when they first came here; and now the prospect
          is very fair for separating us from the rest of the world, and
          most of the people can see it. They were taught then as much as
          they are taught now, that it was necessary to go to and provide
          for ourselves. Do any of the brethren who came here ten years ago
          last July remember that you were instructed that every facility
          that we could need was here in the elements?--that the gold, the
          silver, and the iron were in these mountains?--that the wool, the
          flax, the silk, the cotton, and everything necessary to sustain
          man were in the elements around us? "What, is silk here?" Yes, in
          as great abundance as in any part of the earth; and the finest
          broadcloth is here, and everything to make life desirable is
          It is for the people to go to and develop the resources
          surrounding us. Sugar, starch, and glue are the chief ingredients
          in the sustenance of man. The saccharine matter is in everything
          that grows here: it is in the vegetables and in the animals. We
          have as good beef as there is in the world, furnishing gluten--a
          substance that acts its part in sustaining man. We can raise as
          good potatoes and wheat as can be raised in any other part of the
          earth; also other products affording starch, and all the
          necessary variety and quality of articles of food. We can make
          sugar from the beet; but we are now cultivating the Chinese
          sugar-cane, which produces as good a sweet as any we have
          imported. We have the materials for feeding the body. And as to
          clothing, we can produce as good wool here as they can in any
          part of the world; but we must have the sheep to enable us to do
          so. And we must sow flax and plant cotton for the manufacture of
          linen and cotton cloth; but the elements are here from which they
          all will grow.
          Import silkworms and mulberry trees, and you will find that this
          is as good a country and climate in which to raise silk as any in
          the face of the earth. Do some understand this? Yes, there are
          persons here from the Eastern States who have raised silkworms
          and manufactured silk; and here are scores and hundreds of silk
          manufacturers from the old country. Why, then, do we not have
          silk? Because no man takes steps to organize certain elements
          into the silk. All this was told you in the beginning, and why
          did not men understand?
          You may take the Latter-day Saints, as a whole and they have but
          very little good, sound, worldly sense. Look over this
          congregation, and then find thousands that, during the first four
          years of our settlement here, flooded these valleys with waggons
          and cattle, and every facility for raising what we needed. We
          drove in the sheep, brought the flax-seed, and this, that, and
          the other useful articles. But what did we see? Men, women, and
          children run to California to get gold. They were then told what
          I can now prove. "Go to California if you will; we will not curse
          you--we will not injure nor destroy you, but we will pity you. If
          you must go for gold, and that is you god, go, and I will promise
          you one thing: Every man that stays here and pays attention to
          his business will be able, within ten years, to buy out four of
          those who leave for the gold-mines." Since then some of those
          persons have come cringing back, and thinking, "O dear, I declare
          I wish the brethren could not know that I had been away! I want
          to appear as though I had not gone to California, and to be full
          of good works and faith." Poor, ignorant pusillanimous creatures!
          They come whining back and want to be considered in full
          fellowship, after leaving this place to which our God has led us,
          and after having used their means to feast and build up the
          Brother Heber and I told the company that went to San Bernardino
          with Amasa Lyman, that they would never reach here again without
          help from this people, and we are now sending all the teams we
          can raise from the southern settlements to bring them back. Why?
          Because they cannot stay there, and they are not able to remove.
          They were told at the start that they would have to renounce
          their religion, or else come whining back to these valleys. You
          may take all who have unadvisedly gone from this Territory, [and
          hundreds and thousands have so gone,] and I believe that I alone
          am able to buy the whole of them, though when I came here I had
          but very little property, except what I owed for. I also believe
          that brother Kimball and many others who have listened to what is
          taught now own more property than the whole of those characters.
          They could not believe that I knew enough to instruct them in
          temporal affairs. Do they now believe that I do? They are obliged
          to admit it, though some think, "Really, I do not know whether it
          is so or not." What are those persons good for now?
          Obedience is one of the plainest, most every-day and home
          principles that you ever thought or knew anything about. In the
          first place, learn that you have a father, and then learn strict
          obedience to that parent. Is not that a plain, domestic, home
          principle? How long will it take the men and women here to learn
          it? You have learned, from year to year, scores, if not hundreds
          of principles of the Gospel taught; and one of the first
          principles to be learned by the Saints is to be of one heart and
          mind, to obey your leaders, to obey the Lord. If you have leaders
          who do not teach you the words of life and salvation--who do not
          give you the words of the Lord, why not have faith sufficient to
          remove them out of the way and have better men? If this people
          are righteous and have any leaders that are not capable of
          dictating you, why not stretch you faith in the heavens for God
          to remove them and give you men that are capable of leading you?
          Could I make a brother in the Church believe, after passing
          through the troubles in Missouri, after again being driven from
          our homes in Nauvoo, Illinois, and after being led to this secret
          retreat and sustained all the time by the matchless power of our
          God, that the love of riches would have so blunted the minds of
          many as to cause them to run to California after gold? Why not
          have stayed here, where we could have improved this Territory
          three times as much as we have? We could have extended our
          settlements still farther on the right and on the left. But no;
          they must run and leave us. And many of those that have tarried
          have but a little more confidence, when they have improved upon
          and learned the lesson taught by those who have left.
          The great majority of men and women do not know how to take care
          of themselves. Let me refer the whole of you to a circumstance in
          winter quarters. We left Nauvoo in February, 1846, made our own
          roads through Iowa, except some 40 or 50 miles, built bridges,
          cut down timber, turned out 500 men to go to Mexico, came this
          side of the Missouri river, and there wintered. How did you live
          there? Do you know how you got anything to eat? Brethren came to
          me, saying, "We must go to Missouri. Can we not take our families
          and go to Missouri and get work?" Do you know, to this day, how
          you lived? I will tell you, and then you will remember it. I had
          not five dollars in money to start with; but I went to work and
          built a mill, which I knew we should want only for a few months,
          that cost 3,600 dollars. I gave notice that I would employ every
          man and pay him for his labour. If I had a sixpence, I turned it
          into 25 cents; and a half-bushel of wheat. How did I do that? By
          faith. I went to brother Neff, who had just come in the place and
          asked him for and received 2,600 dollars, though he did not know
          where the money was going. He kept the mill another year, and it
          died on his hands. I say, God bless him for ever! for it was the
          money he brought from Pennsylvania that preserved thousands of
          men, women, and children from starving. I handled and dictated
          it, and everything went off smoothly and prosperously.
          Can you sustain yourselves? Yes. How can you clothe and feed
          yourselves? Keep Gentiles out of here, and not permit any more
          supplies to come from them; and then you will raise sheep and
          take care of them and their wool; then you will raise cotton and
          flax, and dress the lint. We have women who know how to
          manufacture flax into thread and the finest cloth in this house.
          Why do you not make linen? "Because we can turn a calf on to the
          range, and after awhile sell it for 20 or 30 dollars and buy
          store goods." That course is temporal ruination to this people.
          It is a far greater injury than benefit for us to purchase
          imported goods. Shut down the gate and make your own hats,
          bonnets, and every other article of wearing apparel. We have the
          furs and all necessary facilities for making every article we
          need. We can also make our dye stuffs, so soon as we can get a
          greater variety of seed. For ten years we have advertised the
          brethren to bring indigo seed; and I have not obtained any, only
          a little that brother William Willes brought from the East
          Indies. I have also wished them to bring madder seed, for you can
          raise it where you can raise corn. Do we know enough to raise
          indigo and cotton? Yes, when the gate is shut down.
          I told the brethren, yesterday, that I was not afraid of men's
          apostatizing when war and trouble are on hand, for then they will
          stick together. It is in calm weather, when the old ship of Zion
          is sailing with a gentle breeze, and when all is quiet on deck,
          that some of the brethren want to go out in the whaling-boats to
          have a scrape and a swim; and some get drowned, others drifted
          away, and others again get back to the ship. Let us stick to the
          old ship, and she will carry us safely into the harbour. You need
          not be concerned. I want the brethren to raise flax.
          I want some man, who has got the requisite spirit and nerve, to
          prepare a quarter-of-an-acre as they prepare ground for flax in
          Ireland, and then sow about a bushel-and-a-half or two bushels of
          seed, and let it grow as thick as a horse's mane; if necessary,
          brace it up while growing; pull it at the period when the lint
          will be the silkiest, and prepare it for the women to exercise
          their skill in making fine thread. A bushel of flax-seed to the
          acre produces a course lint, suitable for making ropes and coarse
          Brother Taylor remarked that about 60 out of every 75 lambs had
          died in this territory. Yes, you may say that, out of every 75
          lambs, about 90 have died. Where were our sheep in 1848-49? I
          then had 100 sheep, and I would now have 40,000 if they had been
          taken care of as they ought; but instead of that, I have bought
          about 550 since; and now I have 400 or 500.
          Sheep are driven into the Territory, and then they decrease. What
          is the difficulty? It is, "Hurrah for the gold! hurrah for the
          stores! hurrah for the merchants! hurrah for hell!--let us have a
          portion of hell here."
          Elders who have been to St. Louis and had credit for a cent
          should not have brought a thousand or two thousand dollars' worth
          of good here and fooled them away, having fooled them out of
          merchants who still remain fools.
          Shut down the gate, and stop bringing ribbons and foolery here. I
          wish the ribbons and like articles were all sunk in the bottom of
          the sea, rather than have them brought here. Do you know enough
          to clothe yourselves? Yes, when you are driven to it. It makes me
          think of what we passed through in Missouri, when Joseph was
          preaching the Consecration law for surplus property. Would any
          man listen to that law? No, not a man. "Will you pay Tithing?" "I
          cannot any way in the world, for I have not as much property as I
          When the army came and took away the guns, killed our cattle,
          fired our houses, took possession of our fields, and compelled
          the brethren, at the point of bayonet, to sign away their
          property to pay the expenses of the war, one fellow said, "By
          ----, see these men, how keen and fine they look! Old Joe has
          been trying for years to make them consecrate their property, but
          he could not persuade them to do it. We can make them
          The brethren felt well: but suppose they had been required to
          sign a deed of trust to the kingdom of God on the earth, would
          they have done it? No; they would have suffered themselves to be
          damned before they would have done it. Can you not see the
          ignorance of the people in those things? And to this day you can
          see men come here penniless, and hear them say, "We had plenty of
          money where we came from." Then why did you not gather when you
          had money? "We wanted to make more, to bring a great amount into
          the kingdom." Thus men come here penniless, and feel well about
          it. Enquire into the matter, and you will often learn that last
          year they had several thousand dollars, but it has gone into the
          hands of the Gentiles.
          Suppose a poor Elder, while on a mission, should borrow ten
          dollars of such a person, that person will come here and be ready
          to apostatize, unless that money is paid; but if the devils get
          it, "Oh, it is all right." Such feelings are in the hearts of
          some men and women now before me. With them it is, If my enemies
          get my property, all well; but I don't want the kingdom of God to
          have it." Ask them whether they want the kingdom of God to have
          their property, and they will reply, "O yes; ourselves and all we
          have re in the kingdom of God:" but touch a dollar of theirs, and
          they will squirm.
          We are trying to become Saints, and by-and-by we will actually
          become Saints. When men are Saints, they will bring their
          thousands and lay them at the feet of the Bishops, Apostles, and
          Prophets, saying, "Here is my money; it is now where it should
          be." But now what do you see? If an Elder has borrowed a little
          money, or been helped in any manner, he must be chased home and
          made to pay the uttermost farthing, or there is dissatisfaction.
          Fortunately that is not the case with all. A portion of the
          principle of darkness is in the hearts of the people; but it is
          fast going out, and they are coming to a knowledge of the truth.
          One of the first and plainest principles to be believed and
          practised is to put ourselves and all we have into the kingdom of
          God, and then be dictated by the Lord and his servants. Is there
          any danger? Some are ready to say, "Yes, we are afraid to trust
          ourselves and our means here and there."
          Brother Taylor has just said that the religions of the day were
          hatched in hell. The eggs were laid in hell, hatched on its
          borders, and then kicked on to the earth. They may be called
          cockatrices, for they sting wherever they go. Go to their
          meetings in the Christian world, and you will hear them remark,
          "Our ministers dictate our souls' salvation;" and they are
          perfectly composed and resigned to trust their whole future
          destiny to their priests, though they durst not trust them with
          one single dollar beyond their salaries and a few presents. They
          can trust their eternal welfare in the hands of their priests,
          but hardly dare trust them with so much as a bushel of potatoes.
          Is that principle here? Yes, more or less.
          Can we feed and clothe ourselves? Yes, we can, as well as any
          people on the earth. We have a goodly share of the genius,
          talent, and ability of the world; it is combined in the Elders of
          this Church and in their families. And if the Gentile wish to see
          a few tricks, we have "Mormons" that can perform them. We have
          the meanest devils on the earth in our midst, and we intend to
          keep them, for we have use for them; and if the Devil does not
          look sharp, we will cheat him out of them at the last, for they
          will reform and go to heaven with us.
          We have already showed the invading army a few tricks; and I told
          Captain Van Vliet that if they persisted in making war upon us, I
          should share in their supplies. The boys would ride among the
          enemy's tents, and one of their captains ran into Colonel
          Alexander's tent one night, saying, "Why, Colonel, I'll be damned
          if the Mormons won't be riding into your tent, if you don't look
          We have the smartest women in the world, the best cooks, and the
          best mothers; and they know how to dress themselves the neatest
          of any others. We are the smartest people in the world. But look
          out, pertaining to taking care of and sustaining ourselves, that
          the children of this world are not smarter than the children of
          light. I say that they shall not be; for we will beat them in
          every good thing, the Lord and the brethren being our helpers.
          The Lord bless you! Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Ezra T.
          Benson, January 24, 1858
                          Ezra T. Benson, January 24, 1858
          A Discourse by Elder Ezra T. Benson, delivered in the Tabernacle,
               Great Salt Lake City, Sunday Morning, January 24, 1858.
                               Reported by J. V. Long.
          It will be two years the 22nd of next April since I started, in
          company with brother Orson Pratt and others, to take a mission to
          Europe; and it seems but as a dream for me to appear in your
          midst this morning. It seems as if it were only a few days since
          I was in the midst of this people; for the days, weeks, and
          months that have passed have gone swiftly, and it seems as though
          a great deal of the time had not been measured to me.
          I presume this is the experience of many of you who are now
          before me; and although many of you have passed through scenes of
          trial, yet you have felt to realize your situation in the
          reformation more than you ever have done before. Feelings have
          come over you that you have never before experienced since you
          have been in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
          But, notwithstanding all our past failings and weaknesses, we
          have been greatly blessed and prospered, and the hand of the Lord
          has been over us for good all the day long.
          Now, if we all realize and do actually know that God is with
          us--that he has forgiven our sins--that we are in fellowship with
          this people and have confidence to go before our God in prayer,
          knowing that our sins are put far away from us, no more to return
          again, unless through our disobedience, it is one of the greatest
          blessings that can be conferred upon us.
          When I was called upon to leave these valleys, I felt that I had
          the prayers, fellowship, and confidence of this people; and if I
          had their confidence then, I am well persuaded I have it now.
          This reflection causes my heart to rejoice; and it is one of the
          greatest blessings that any man can enjoy to know that he is in
          full fellowship with this people.
          Shall we be thankful to our God and this people for the faith and
          prayers that have been exercised in our behalf? These things have
          occupied my attention ever since I arrived home.
          True, there is a warfare within me, and there is a warfare within
          every man and woman that has a name in this Church; and we have
          to guard against the intrusions of the Adversary. Upon what
          principles shall we guard against them? Why, live our religion.
          That is all we have to do; and I know that, by the power of faith
          and the Holy Spirit, we can root out everything that is contrary
          to the promptings of the Spirit, and we shall know for ourselves
          that we are the children of God.
          I have been to England on a mission, sent by the First Presidency
          and the general authorities convened in Conference on the 6th day
          of April, 1856; and I can say I have had a prosperous mission,
          and have been greatly blest. As I have told the Elders, so I will
          say here, Any man who goes on a mission in these times, to the
          European nations, to the United States, or to the islands of the
          sea, and returns home with his scalp on, I think he should
          certainly acknowledge the hand of the Lord in it.
          When we first arrived in England, all was peace, as a general
          thing. And do you know the reason why it was peace? Yes, you do.
          We could preach throughout England; we could preach in Germany,
          in France, in Denmark, Sweden, and Norway; we could preach in
          Wales, in Ireland, and Scotland, with but very little
          interruption; and, as a general thing, we had very good attention
          and good congregations. But when the reformation commenced in the
          Valleys of the Mountains, as the Saints were told beforehand, the
          Devil began to open his eyes and look at the Saints, not only in
          England, but throughout all the parts of the earth where the
          Latter-day Saints were located, and wherever the servants of God
          were travelling to preach the Gospel, and wherever the printed
          word was being circulated.
          In all these places the Devil was up and dressed two hours
          earlier in a morning than he ever had been before, attending to
          his calling and kingdom, and doing that which was committed to
          him; for he has a work to do as well as we have, and he is most
          faithfully performing his part. Just in proportion to the
          diligence of the Saints in Zion and throughout the earth, so will
          the Devil work; and you cannot tell the time when his old nose
          has not been poked as near to the servants of God and to this
          kingdom as he could get it; and he would be right here to-day in
          this congregation and break up this meeting, if he had the power
          to do it.
          Through the faithfulness of the Saints, I am led to believe that
          the kingdom is pretty well cleansed, especially from Gentiles and
          from Gentilism. But it is not so in the world; for the Devil has
          power in the midst of the Saints while they are amongst the
          Gentiles. But, as I told the Saints in England, there should
          always be a little place in the heart of every man and woman
          which they can call Zion; and it looks to me as if there were a
          good many here who could say Zion is in their bosoms, and that
          they have a place in their hearts which they can call heaven.
          The Spirit of God flows to a greater extent from this stand than
          it does in any other place upon the face of the earth. There is
          more power here than in any other place.
          I can say, in behalf of the English Saints, that they are a good
          people, and you know it as well as I do; and those who have been
          there know it, and you who have not been there know it by the
          spirit they bring when they come here.
          As regards the work of the Lord, in general the Elders have been
          faithful. They have gone into the streets and into the lanes and
          borne a faithful testimony to the work of God and to what he was
          doing among the nations. To the honest their words have been
          sweeter than the honeycomb; but the great majority were unwilling
          to receive the message sent unto them.
          I have taken a great deal of comfort and satisfaction in lifting
          up my voice before the people, and I have cried aloud and spared
          not, but told them what was in my heart. I felt it was my duty to
          vindicate the truths of the Gospel. I have also taken up the laws
          of the Territory of Utah and the laws and Constitution of the
          United States, pointing out to them the privileges and rights
          that are guaranteed unto us by those instruments.
          I not only say this of myself, but I can say it of my brethren
          who have been associated with me: for we have had power to put
          down all opposition that has been raised against us, unless it
          was by an ungodly mob that was inspired by the Devil to get up
          sticks and stones and every kind of weapon they could procure,
          excepting firearms, which the law of the land forbids them to
          When they come with the Bible in hand, which they profess to
          believe, they are easily whipped out; and truth rises triumphant
          among the people, and the high and low and all that were
          intelligent could see and understand that we have the Gospel of
          Jesus Christ, and that we have the authority which no other
          people possessed. There was not a minister or any other
          individual that held the authority which we had in our
          possession; and some were ready to acknowledge it, when the
          Spirit of the Lord was upon them. But how long would that last?
          Only long enough for them to get out of doors.
          It is indeed a great thing to purify the Saints; and it is a
          great thing for a man to purify his heart. When a man's heart is
          pure and scales are knocked off from his eyes, he can then see
          and comprehend the things of God--he can know the mind of the
          Lord in this land or any other; but if the scales are over his
          eyes as thick as canvas, he cannot see afar off. We all know that
          we have to live our religion here as well as in England; and I
          sometimes think it takes more faith to live in Zion than in
          another place; for there is more required of a congregation in
          Zion than there is in England.
          The Saints in Denmark and in Sweden are inspired by the same
          Spirit that we are, and they are as good a people as I ever
          travelled amongst in my life. They do not generally understand
          the English language; but they can understand by what spirit a
          man is moved when he gets up to speak. They rejoice when an Elder
          from the Valley presents himself in their midst; and, to see a
          Valley Elder, they would get up of a morning and go 40 miles, and
          not stop for rain, thunder, or lightning till they got to their
          journey's end.
          There is a certain class of men that are honest in heart, but
          fear comes upon them when trials are presented, and they do not
          understand; they have not faith or confidence to stand up and
          say, "I am a Latter-day Saint, and if you want to mob, mob and be
          damned." There are but few who can stand the trying day. A great
          many of the Saints have no faith to brook the insults cast upon
          them, and hence they hide up and keep out of sight of their
          I told the Saints in Bath and Bristol that we were going home,
          before I had got any news; and, said I, "You have been mobbed,
          laughed at, and jeered by your enemies, and I want you to
          understand that you do not owe them anything. I am willing to be
          responsible for all the sin there will be if you immediately shut
          up your chapels and henceforth hold your meetings in some private
          house or little room, or some place where you will not be subject
          to the insults of mobs." The next morning I got a letter for
          brother Pratt, informing me that I was called home.
          I was not sent out to convert the world, but to warn the people,
          to vindicate the cause of the truth, to set politically,
          religiously, temporally, and spiritually, and to declare unto the
          nations of the earth the true situation of this community.
          I want to live a long time yet, and I hope that I shall not die
          until the kingdom of God rises triumphant over all the powers
          that are organized in opposition to it.
          A good spirit prevailed among the Saints in Europe when we left
          them, which was about the 14th of last October. Brother Samuel W.
          Richards and George Snyder arrived in Liverpool on the 9th of
          that month, and brother Pratt immediately wrote me word to come
          to Liverpool to prepare for returning home.
          On the arrival of brothers Richards and Snyder, we held a
          council, at which it was decided that brother Pratt, myself,
          brothers John A. Ray, and John Kay, John Scott, and William
          Miller should return home. We immediately went to work and
          released all the Elders, except brother Calkin of the English
          Mission, and brother Jabez Woodard, of the Italian Mission. The
          native Elders are just as anxious to come here as the American
          Before we embarked for England, I had a few days' time to spare,
          and I embraced the opportunity to go and visit my friends and
          acquaintances; and when I went amongst them, they immediately
          asked if I had come back to stay. "No," said I.
          "Then what are you come back for?"
          "Why, to prove that you are false prophets; for you told me that
          in five years "Mormonism" would be broken up, and that the Saints
          of God would be scattered and peeled. "Now," said I, "if you want
          to prophesy anything more about 'Mormonism,' prophesy good
          things--big things; for it is the kingdom of God, and it is set
          up in the mountains. It is the kingdom that Daniel saw, and it is
          going to spread and grow till it fills the whole earth."
          On the Sabbath I was in the neighbourhood where my friends lived,
          in the State of Massachusetts, and I told my brother that I
          wanted to go to old Milford to the meeting, whereupon he got out
          his carriage, and we drove off to the meetinghouse; and as soon
          as the minister got his eye upon me, he motioned me to come into
          the stand. He called me brother Benson, and said, "Sit down
          here." He said, "Do you want to preach or to pray?" I said, "Yes,
          for I am a praying man." I offered up as humble a prayer as I
          could, and then sat down. I learned then that he had a special
          lecture he wanted to deliver on politics; for it was when they
          were trying to elect Fremont President of the United States. He
          delivered his political sermon about the North and South; but
          there was not repentance or Gospel about what he said.
          When he had concluded, he gave me the privilege of talking to the
          people, which I did for about half-an-hour. I knew that I had to
          talk in a very pious style, but I endeavoured to preach the
          Gospel in plainness; and the very moment that I came to the
          testimony of the Gospel--to declare that Joseph Smith was a
          Prophet, and the Brigham Young is his successor--good gracious!
          you could see the devils dancing in the countenances of the
          people, and the influence ran from heart to heart. However, they
          kept quiet, though very uneasy. After my remarks, they claimed
          the privilege of asking questions. One gentleman asked if we
          believed in slavery. I told him, No, we did not; "but," said I,
          "we believe in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, which is the Gospel of
          liberty, for it open the door of freedom and throws off the
          fetters of bondage."
          "Well," said he, "do not you believe in freeing the negroes?"
          I answered, "No; the Lord will do that."
          "Ah," said he, "the Mormons do believe in slavery; for they
          permit men to bring their slaves into their Territory."
          I them went on to show him our views upon the subject; but I
          could see my remarks did not satisfy the people.
          The next man who came on to the carpet wanted to know how many
          wives brother Brigham had. I replied, "I have not come here to
          lay before this people the domestic affairs of my Governor. It is
          a question I never asked him myself, for I never took the pains
          to inquire anything about it. But still, as I am a Yankee, I will
          guess, if that will do you any good. Now," said I, "I will be
          honest with you, for your pastor has given me the freedom of
          speech; and if I may judge for appearances, I should presume he
          has some fifty or sixty."
          He then asked, "Why do you believe in that doctrine?"
          I replied, "Why did Abraham believe in it? Why do you wish to
          raise a quarrel with me, when all the Prophets spoken of in the
          Bible you believe in both taught and practised it?" He could not
          tell; but the amount of it was, he wanted to put down
          "Mormonism"--not that he could rebut the testimony that was
          presented, but he had a spirit to endeavour to put down the cause
          of God.
          The principles of the Gospel are going to either damn or save all
          to whom they are presented. There are hundreds and thousands and
          tens of thousands of people in the world who this day know that
          "Mormonism" is true, and they are using their money and their
          influence to hinder its progress.
          The priests of the day are already to collect their pence and
          shillings to persecute the Saints of God and to foster and
          sustain those who will do it.
          Wherever you find a man in England, in Germany, or in Denmark,
          who takes the periodicals of the day, he can sit down and tell
          you all about the Latter-day Saints. He can tell you what we
          believe; and, providing you could converse with him without his
          knowing you were a "Mormon," or a servant of God sent to him with
          the everlasting Gospel, he would sit down and tell you all about
          "Mormonism." But you must appear as a stranger and ask, "Do you
          know anything about the Latter-day Saints in Utah?" "O yes," he
          will say, and proceed to tell you what we believe. But the moment
          you let him know who you are and undertake to preach to him, he
          will turn round and deny everything he has said. What is the
          reason of this? It is because he is dishonest and has partaken of
          the spirit of the father of lies, who is determined to use his
          influence and power to the injury and destruction of the Saints
          of God.
          I was received in Massachusetts as I never was before by my
          friends, for they hailed me with joy. But were they ready to
          receive the Gospel? No--no more than they were fourteen years
          ago. I could see they had a spirit to persecute the Saints, and
          they would have been as easily lit up as a lucifer match. "Well,"
          said one, "did you come that way back?" "No, and I never want to
          go again, unless the Almighty commands me."
          When we came to New York we looked through the pioneer trail, but
          it did not look right: but when we looked south, it was all
          light; so we took the steamer for the Isthmus.
          We had on board 1,150 passengers, 200 or 300 of whom were United
          States troops. When we were loading up, the soldiers were driven
          on board, like pigs, as thick as they could stand.
          Government is shipping men round by the Isthmus of Panama to
          California, and we were informed the next steamer was to bring
          600 men. There was a good deal of fault found by the officers of
          Government because there were only 250 along with us; but it was
          said, "They are going to ship them by thousands to California,
          and then forward to Utah."
          They said they were coming to California; but when we asked them
          privately where they were destined for, they said, "We are going
          to Utah.
               It is so also in Kansas. They have all sworn, old Harney
          included, that they will not give sleep to their eyes nor slumber
          to their eyelids until they have destroyed the "Mormons." They
          design in their hearts to blot "Mormonism" out of existence, and
          they feel like using their money for the accomplishment of this
          object, and even go so far as to say their purses shall be open
          for their means to be used in the fitting out of men for the
          Territory of Utah; and they say they will come from the north and
          from the south and from the east and surround this people by
          thousands and by tens of thousands, until we are wiped out.
          This is their feeling, as a general thing, and it seems as if all
          earth and hell are united against the "Mormons." They have not
          got here yet, have they? Catching is always before hanging!
          The halters are already made which they design shall hang the
          Governor, the members of the Legislative Assembly, and every
          faithful Elder in the Church; for they feel determined to swing
          you up between the heavens and the earth. We understand their
          plays and their schemes, for we have been in their midst.
          The inquiry may arise, "Did you ever hear one man say anything in
          our favour?" Yes, we have heard more than one who dared come out
          and vindicate the character of this people, but it would
          generally be in private circles. I have heard a man say that he
          had been among this people, had been treated well, and never saw
          a better people in his life; and he said he believed that all
          those reports that were in circulation were a pack of damned
          There was a man travelling on the packet with us who used to
          attend the threshing-machine for William Macpherson, in this
          city. He vindicated the character of this people. He did not
          recognize us; but I knew him as soon as I saw him. He said, in
          conversation with men on the boat, "I am a rambling sort of a
          chap; but if I were going to live and settle down, it would be in
          Utah." I asked him if he thought the "Mormons" were going to
          fight. He said, "No, they are not; for they are not a fighting
          people; but it is those lying editors. The Mormons are a
          peaceable, quiet people."
          When the standard of freedom is raised, we shall bid all classes
          welcome to the rights and privileges of liberty. When that day
          comes, people can come with all creeds and enjoy their liberties,
          providing they will acknowledge the laws of God; and I can tell
          you they will come by hundreds, by thousands, and by tens of
          thousands. Yes, they will flock to the standard of liberty.
          There is not a master-spirit on the earth at the present time who
          dare take this stand and raise the flag of liberty, bidding
          welcome to all nations, except President Brigham Young. The very
          move that has been made for the last six months will preach
          louder and stronger than all the Elders of Israel.
          The standard of liberty is about to be unfurled. Good laws will
          be maintained, and the virtuous and innocent will have their
          rights and privileges guaranteed unto them; and we mean to stand
          in defence of those principles of right, even to the laying down
          of our lives, if necessary. When a man will stand in defence of
          the truth, he has more power and influence among the nations of
          the earth than a dozen of the ungodly.
          If ever I felt like preaching the Gospel, it is now; and I would
          not ask for a better mission than to take my valise and travel
          through the Territory of Utah; and I know that in doing so I
          should travel amongst the best people in the world. I have seen
          the contrast between this people and the world most visibly
          during the last three or four months.
          What is the condition of the Government of the United States?
          They are all looking at the President, just as a child would,
          apparently expecting that something would be done. They are
          hoping and expecting that Government would take "Mormonism" in
          hand and wipe it out of existence in a few days. But Uncle Sam,
          uncle Bill, uncle Tom, and all our uncles and cousins, will find
          something to do if they attempt such a thing.
          The people of the United States seem paralyzed, and do not know
          what to do. They are waiting for the Government to call for
          volunteers, and then they say they are all ready to go.
          California people say they are all ready to rally. But I tell
          you, I believe what brother Brigham has said--They will not come
          here. The priest in the pulpit is ready, and says, "O yes, we
          must go and wipe out the Mormons; but do not ask me to go."
          This is like an old man that had some boys, and when he wanted a
          job of work done he would say, "Go, boys, and do that:" but his
          neighbour, who had a lot of boys also, when he wanted anything
          done, used to say, "Come, boys, let us do that." It is just so
          with the priests, lawyers, doctors, and all others who are
          opposed to "Mormonism:" they say, "O yes, go and wipe out the
          Mormons," but they never want to go themselves.
          I will tell you, the majority of the people of the States do not
          care the ashes of a rye straw for their officers, and it is just
          so in the army: in fact, they none of them care much for each
          other; but they care a good deal for Uncle Sam's money.
          When we landed in San Francisco, the officers were so much afraid
          that the troops would desert, that they went and guarded them
          themselves; and we left them patrolling the docks there. The
          officers were Yankees, stiff and starched, and they said,
          "Mormonism must be extinguished;--yes, this must be done."
          "Colonel Casey, what do you think about it?" He seemed to be a
          peaceable kind of man, and said he could not tell what would have
          to be done. The Colonel was then asked if he fostered the idea of
          going to an innocent people and exterminating men, women, and
          children? He said, "I do not like it; it is contrary to my
          feelings; but the Government of the United States have taken the
          thing in hand, and we, as officers, are compelled to carry out
          their plans, or resign."
          Let us do the very best we can, brethren and sisters; for the day
          may come when we may be thankful for every foot of greasewood and
          of desert country there is between us and our enemies.
          I am glad that we came through on the southern route, for I have
          been enabled to learn a little of the road.
          The editors in the States are prompting Government to bring their
          troops from the south. Why, they do not know; only they are not,
          on that route, so subject to snow-storms, and they can travel in
          the winter. But I can tell them, the south route is ten times
          worse than the east: it is one perfect desert from Muddy Creek
          clear through. There is now and then a patch of grass on the
          journey. But what can a large army do?
          The kanyon coming up the Santa Clara is quite as good as Echo,
          and some think a little better. It does seem as if those
          mountains and kanyons have been prepared on purpose; and we have
          great cause to be thankful for those natural defences.
          Here we have liberty to do right and legislate for our own
          benefit, and we feel that this is our home.
          I told sister Richie on Painter Creek, when she invited us to
          breakfast, and set before us some butter, milk, and bread, that
          is was the best meal I had eaten since I left home; and I enjoyed
          it much better than I did the dainties that were provided while I
          was crossing the Isthmus.
          I feel to back up all the plans of by brethren who have the right
          to dictate, and to bear off this kingdom to the nations; and this
          is the feeling of my brethren who have returned with me.
          We are now ready to go and preach the Gospel, to go into the
          kanyons and help to fight our enemies, or to do anything that is
          required of us; and I feel to say, with all the power and
          authority of the Priesthood that is conferred upon me, God bless
          our leaders with wisdom, with power, with influence, with cattle,
          with horses, with sheep, with wives, with children, with houses,
          with lands, and with everything their hearts can desire before
          God. This is my prayer all the day long; and when I feel so, I
          feel strong in the mighty God of Jacob, and I know that he
          blesses them with his Spirit.
          I feel to say, Latter-day Saints, in the name of the Lord, be ye
          blessed; for ye are the only people that God acknowledges on the
          earth, as an organized community, politically and religiously,
          spiritually, physically, and mentally,--the only people that are
          to be found who are willing to acknowledge that God has
          established his kingdom with Apostles and Prophets.
          A great many of the people of this generation have turned
          infidels; but still the sectarians have their Scripture-readers,
          and they go through all the formalities of religion. One man came
          to me and wished to know if I would like to have the Bible read
          to me. I told him yes, for I was fond of anything that was good.
          I asked him if he believed in angels. He said, "O no; the power
          of God is done away;" and everything is done away among them,
          only just what a man can do; and men set themselves up who have
          no vitality nor intelligence in them. It is all like the chaff
          before the wind. We are truly a blessed people, for we have the
          light of eternal life; and, notwithstanding the howling of the
          priests, if we do as brother Brigham says, we shall come off
          I believe this people are ready to do anything required of them;
          and if they continue in this way, all will be well with them, and
          nothing can stand before them.
          I heard a man say that he did not care what was said against this
          people, he was ready to believe it; and I can say that such a man
          is ready to be damned, and he will be damned.
          I bear this testimony that I know this to be the work of God, and
          I take great pleasure in proclaiming it.
          I ask an interest in your prayers, that I may have the spirit of
          obedience and be enabled to do as I am told from this time
          henceforth and for ever. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Heber
          C. Kimball, December 27, 1857
                         Heber C. Kimball, December 27, 1857
                            PRODUCE AND MANUFACTURE, ETC.
             A Discourse by President Heber C. Kimball, delivered in the
             Great Salt Lake City, Sunday Afternoon, December 27, 1857.
                               Reported by J. V. Long.
          You have all heard what has been said, and the design thereof has
          been to show you your situation.
          There is not much profit in all the teachings that are given from
          this stand to a person who simply hears the sound and does not
          partake of the spirit and intent of that instruction; but the
          profit is to the man who heareth the word and observeth and
          receiveth the Spirit and power of God.
          I bear my testimony to what has been said to-day, for it is good;
          and every one that heareth and observeth what has been said by
          brother Brigham, brother Woodruff, and brother Snow shall be
          blest; for it is life to all who receive it, because truth is
          If we treasure up those principles, and they adhere to us--that
          is, to the fountain of life that is within us, how can there be
          otherwise than a growing and increasing in the knowledge of God?
          It is upon the same principle that wheat increases, and upon the
          same principle that every kind of vegetation increases. How does
          wheat increase? It is because the element or germ of life is in
          the wheat. If the germ was not in each kernel, of course it would
          not increase.
          If there is a fountain and the root of truth within us, then
          other principles of truth will adhere to them and connect
          themselves to that fountain that is within us. What will be the
          result in such a case? The fruits of righteousness will appear. A
          man has got to have the saving principles of life within him
          continually. If they do not dwell in him, he is not in a saveable
          condition, for there is no way to save a man only to plan within
          him the principles of life; for in the absence of those
          principles, he is like salt that has lost its saving power, and
          thenceforth is good for nothing.
          You know that salt will not save meat when it has lost its saving
          principles, and it is just so with us: when a man sins to that
          degree that he rejects the truth and the principles of
          righteousness, he is thenceforth good for nothing but to be cast
          out and trodden under foot of men.
          So it will be eventually in the United States. After the truth is
          all gathered out, you will find that the rest will be destroyed.
          I do not mean that the land will be destroyed, but I refer to the
          wicked inhabitants, and the earth will be emptied, according to
          the words of the Prophet. Why will this be so? Because there are
          no saving principles there: the saving principles are with this
          Church, and there is no salvation in the absence of those
          I dwell upon these things because I wish every man to listen to
          them, and I want them to watch and nourish every word, and to
          cherish them as you would a crop of wheat. Let nothing come in
          between you and the word of God, and then you will do well and
          I have got just such a wild notion in me, if you please to
          consider it so, that I believe we can raise everything that is
          raised in every other part of the earth. Why do I believe it? I
          believe it because I have got the Priesthood: it has been given
          to me and to you, and we are made saviours of men upon Mount
          Well, then, if we have got the seed and principles of life within
          us, upon the same principle that the earth imparts nourishment to
          vegetation, we can impart life to others; and if we can save a
          man, upon the same principle we can save a woman and everything
          that is upon the earth. What do you go to work here for? I go to
          work to produce vegetables, grain, and all things that I and my
          family need, and I dictate my children, and show them a course
          for them to pursue.
          We have dedicated this sacrament to the Father and to the Son,
          that the saving principles of life may be in it, and that, in
          partaking of it, we may become sanctified. We bless the water as
          well as the bread, and ask God to sanctify it and fill it with
          life and the principles of salvation. Do you not think that God
          can bless this land, so that we can raise anything here, as
          easily as he can bless the bread and water? Yes, he can. What
          makes me believe these things? It is because the people generally
          do not believe them; and they show by their works they do not.
          But I endeavour to prove by my works that I am a believer in
          these very doctrines which I am teaching to you.
          The individuals who believed that it was not possible to raise
          fruit here have no currant bushes, no apple trees, no apricot
          trees, no peach trees, and no plum trees; in fact, they have not
          got any fruit-trees at all, from the fact that they did not
          believe that fruit could be raised; and their works have show
          their faith. They have got most excellent faith, in their way,
          but it does not produce any fruit.
          Those same individuals now believe that we can raise fruit up
          here in brother Brigham's garden, and brother Heber's, and
          brother Carrington's, and those men that live up here on the
          poorest land there is in the valleys; and we certainly do produce
          some of the best fruit that is produced in these mountains. I
          never saw better peaches in my life, nor any larger ones, nor any
          that were more full of juice. Do you think I have got any dried
          peaches? Yes, I have got enough to last me two years, and I
          presume that brother Brigham has, and a great many others. How
          were they produced? They were produced by our actually going to
          work and raising the trees and nourishing and cherishing them.
          I will ask some of you mothers a question, and you that deal in
          poultry. You know we have hens, and they lay eggs, and we have
          geese, and turkeys, and all other kinds of fowls; but they might
          lay eggs from now till doomsday, and if they did not keep those
          eggs warm, and nourish them, they never would produce a chicken;
          no never. Do not you all understand that?
          If you say you cannot raise fruit on that low land, I wish to say
          to you that I know better. All the reason why they have not
          raised fruit in the lower parts of the city is because they have
          not planted the trees! Upon the same principle, the people of San
          Pete said the could not raise fruit. It was because the never set
          out an apple tree, and for several years they never planted a
          cucumber, a water-melon, nor a squash, and of course they never
          raised one. I presume brother Snow will bear testimony to this.
          Some said they had faith; but their faith never produced
          water-melons, squashes, cucumbers, nor anything else. Now, works
          will produce faith, and works will produce good trees and good
          We dedicate and consecrate the wine or water that we partake of
          in the sacrament, and we also dedicate the bread to the Lord; and
          it should be just so with everything: it should all be dedicated
          to the Lord; and upon all that we do and put our hands unto, we
          should ask his blessings. We should never meddle with anything on
          this earth that we cannot lay our hands upon and bless and
          dedicate and consecrate to the Lord, that it may be for the
          accomplishment of what it is designed, and produce the very
          effects that we desire.
          I could talk about a great many simple things of this kind, but
          you laugh. When I talk about such things as cucumbers and
          water-melons, many laugh, and I hate to be laughed at when I am
          telling the honest truth and speaking of the simple things of the
          kingdom of God.
          Bless you, this world was made out of small things. I was small,
          indeed, when I was in the loins of my father Adam; I must have
          been very small, and so must you, for you were all there: but
          here I am, a grown man, and, perhaps, nearly as large as Father
          Adam was. Perhaps I am not so large: I may have become
          degenerated; but be that as it may, I know that I am here.
          Brethren, go and dedicate you gardens, and when you get a tree
          that you want to set out, dedicate the ground, the root, and the
          elements that you are going to place around it, and ask God to
          fill it with the warmth and with power to vegetate. Dedicate the
          seed that you are going to put into the earth, and then dedicate
          the earth, and nourish it when it springs forth, especially in a
          cold soil; and do not say that it cannot be quickened, for I say
          it can. There can be substances such as bones, ashes, lime, old
          hats, and old boots and shoes, and everything that you can get
          into it will tend to quicken it; and why will this be the case?
          Because you have asked God to bless it, and because you have put
          works with your faith. By pursuing this course, you can produce
          apples and peaches on the low as well as on the high lands. Do I
          believe that the character and course of this people will cause
          the earth to produce things that require a warm climate? Yes--the
          earth will be like the people who inhabit it; and it is the duty
          of us all to go to work and practise accordingly.
          Can you produce flax in this country? Can you produce it, unless
          you go to work and put in the seed? Can you produce wheat, unless
          you plough the land, put in the seed, and then irrigate it? Do I
          believe that this land will produce cotton? Yes, just as well as
          the land down in the southern country: God can change the climate
          for the benefit and salvation of his Saints.
          There never was an ear of corn raised here till we came, and
          nobody would believe that we could raise any. Bridger offered
          brother Brigham a thousand dollars for an ear of corn raised in
          the valley. The mountaineers had not confidence enough in God to
          put the seed into the earth; but we have almost produced anything
          that we have tried, and there has been cotton raised up north in
          this valley. Bless you, it is colder up north than it is here.
          Can we raise madder here? Yes, every one can raise it in their
          gardens, and it can be raised as easily as your beds of flowers.
          I cannot remember the names of them; but it can be raised upon
          the same principle that your flowers are raised; and so can silk,
          only the tree is first raised, and the worm eats the leaves of
          the tree, and then produces the silk.
               I am going to talk about home manufacture, and I cannot get
          my mind upon anything else. You may take a hundred men who have
          got a hundred wives only, and let me tell you that not fifty
          years would roll around before they would revolutionize the whole
          world, if they were men of the right stripe. Why would they do
          this? Because they would be filled with the power of God, and the
          very earth that they walk upon would be quickened by them, and
          the mountains, the sage plains, and the pools of water would feel
          their power. If is were necessary, those men would control them
          just as much as Moses did when we struck the rock with the rod
          that God gave to him, and through the gift and power of God that
          was in Moses the rock was rent, and the water gushed forth.
          Why was this miracle performed? Because it was necessary for the
          salvation of the children of Israel. Is it necessary that
          miracles should be performed now? Yes, it is necessary that the
          Lord should hear us and help us; and he will hear us and bless
          us, if we are humble and faithful; and he will bless the earth
          and all that dwell thereon; he will bless our herds, our flocks,
          our wives, and our children; and they will increase in proportion
          to our righteousness. These are my feelings in relation to these
          Brethren and sisters, let us go to work, every one of us, and
          cultivate the earth; for it will not hurt any member of a family
          to assist in these things: it will not hurt the sisters to assist
          in making gardens; no, it will not hurt your delicate hands any
          more than it did in England. I know, and can now see hundreds
          that worked the fields with their nice, delicate hands, and their
          striped petticoats, and it did not take above three yards to make
          one of those petticoats. I have seen you with your nice shoes and
          your bed-gowns, or some would call them sacks, and your nice
          aprons tied around, and the apron would cause every pucker just
          as well as if they had been made in the dress.
          This is home manufacture! It is a common occurrence, just as much
          so as it is for one day to follow another. Why cannot you pursue
          that course, just as you did in England, in Illinois, in
          Missouri, or in the Southern States, or in Massachusetts and in
          Vermont? Did the ladies work there? Yes, they did; they used to
          sow the onion seed, and then weed the onions, and attend them,
          and bring them to maturity; and why is it not as well to do that
          now as to have to go into it five years hence, as brother Snow
          has been speaking of?
          When the United States muster their forces, and the devil
          combines his forces against us, then God will combine his forces
          against them. But we do not want women to go out and fight, but
          we want them to stay here and raise everything for our comfort
          and consolation. We can pursue a course that will make this whole
          land bring forth. You can have fruit on the low land as well as
          on the high; you can have fruit at San Pete as well as here. Why,
          brother Snow will acknowledge that they raise as good pumpkins
          there as we do here; but they never did till they had faith to
          plant the seed. Are they going to raise fruit there? Yes, they
          are; and if the ground is cold, they must stimulate it, but not
          with whisky, for that will cost too much.
          I intend to take a course to worship God acceptably, and I never
          saw greater necessity than there is at the present time for us to
          live our religion and be one; and this is not anything new with
          me, for I have seen it all the time. Then let us go to with our
          might and do all things that are required at our hands. Let us
          make all the cloth we can, and raise all the flax we can; and
          when we have raised it, let us make that into cloth, and then we
          shall be able to make every woman shine with home-made clothes,
          when they come into this congregation with their beautiful wool
          and linen dresses on, and their bonnets made out of straw that
          has grown on their own land. I have been thinking about this
          matter two or three days, for I have some straw on hand, and I
          have been thinking of advising my women to braid up the straw and
          have my boys' hats made before the hot weather comes. I would
          rather see them do that ten thousand times that to see them go to
          parties, and then half the boys get drunk. That is not home
          manufacture, but that is the death and destruction to this
          Now, sisters, go to work and braid your straw, and have it ready
          when the summer comes. This whole people might have their heads
          covered with their own home-manufactured goods, and then they
          would not have to go to those stores and buy hats that are not
          worth a dime apiece. Suppose the boys were out two years, would
          not the sisters have to do some of these things then? Is it not
          better to have things of our own make than to give the merchant a
          dollar or two for them, and then not have them half so good?
          Sisters, gather up the rags--those little fine pieces that you
          have throwing about, and sew them together, and make nice
          petticoats and aprons for the little girls, coverlets, &c., and
          then teach them to do it for themselves, that they may hereafter
          make good wives. I can tell you there are not one-half of the
          women that are fit for wives when they are married. They have not
          been instructed in home manufacture, and some of them have
          scarcely learned to wash the dishes properly or to take care of
          things about the house; and the young men are just as bad.
          I am talking to you, young women,--I am talking to those that are
          married; for they ought to be instructors of those that are
          young. How long would it take a little girl to sit down and make
          herself a nice petticoat and to pick up some nice pieces to make
          herself an apron of? But you women who have not got anything to
          wear did not think of these things. You are now ready to say, "We
          have not got anything to wear; we have not got any patches, and
          therefore we cannot make any patchwork." Well, then, tear up your
          dresses and make some, for that is what a great many of you do.
          My desire is to stir up your minds to reflection in my simple
          way, that you may go and attend to some of these matters.
          I do not care about the army over a Bridger, and in fact I have
          scarcely thought of them,--at lease not for a week past. Will
          they trouble us? No, they will not, not so as to root us up from
          this time henceforth and for ever, provided we do right. When you
          are doing things that I have been speaking of, you are keeping
          the commandments of brother Heber, the Twelve, and your Bishops.
          My mind is upon these things; I am led to them, and I will talk
          about them.
          In our first start here, it was almost impossible to get any man
          to start a tannery, and now a great we get. I have this from our
          shoemakers; and I feel to thank God that the gate is shut down,
          that a deal of the leather that is made here is the best, and
          that we cannot get their miserable stuff here anymore. The Lord
          will now bless our labour; he will bless the fruits of the earth,
          he will bless our tanneries, he will bless our sheep, our flocks,
          and everything we undertake to handle and manage; and that is not
          all, for we will bless those things too, and we will dedicate and
          consecrate them to God, and we will ask God to fill the earth
          with the resurrecting power; for life is the resurrecting power,
          whether it is little or much, and it is that power which brings
          forth vegetation: it is the same power which brings forth food
          and raiment; and by the same power we shall be brought forth in
          the morning of the resurrection, only there will be more of it in
          We should dedicate all those things to the Lord, with our bodies,
          our houses, our furniture, the earth that we cultivate, and the
          seed that we put into the earth; and we should bless the shovel,
          the hoe, the spade, the sheep, the horses, the cattle, the cows,
          and all that we possess; and then will not God multiply them unto
          us? Yes, he will, and we shall get heavier fleeces of wool and
          more of them. What! can he bless the fleece? Yes, he can, as
          easily as he blesses the sheep.
          I recollect being in England, in the town of Chadburn,
          Lancashire; and while there I felt as if my whole system was
          alive; I felt quickened by some unseen power. Brother Hyde was
          with me, and he knows that it is true; and I felt to pull of my
          shoes. We pulled off our hats, for we felt such a sacred and holy
          feeling. I told brother Joseph about it when I came home; and
          said he, "Brother Heber, that place was dedicated by one of the
          old Prophets, and it will always be filled with the spirit of
          life." Does not that prove that we can bless the earth? Yes, it
          does, and we can; and you may call me crazy if you like; and I
          will say, Bang away, but that does not make me crazy. You may
          call me visionary, if you please; and I wish to God you were all
          visionary as those holy men were who dedicated those places in
          the days of Jesus and the Apostles. They are holy places, and
          they will be held sacred even as Jackson County; and there is no
          a man living there but at this day has the spirit of fear upon
          him and expects that he will have to march some day; and, to this
          day, no man has ventured to cultivate or build upon the Temple
          Block. Joseph the Prophet dedicated that land, and they feel the
          effects of that dedication; and the blessing will remain there,
          and all hell cannot get it off, and I shall yet see the day that
          I will go back there, with brother Brigham and with thousands and
          millions of others, and we will go precisely according to the
          dedication of the Prophet of the living God. Talk to me about my
          having any dubiety on my mind about these things being
          fulfilled!--I am just as confident of it as I am that I am called
          to be a saviour of men, and no power can hinder it.
          If we do not receive these things, it is because we do not live
          for them. I want to do everything by the power of God and the
          inspiration of his Spirit. When I get a new wife, I always
          dedicate her to God, and this is the way I have done for years. I
          also make a practice of dedicating my children to the Lord, that
          they may grow up in his wisdom and increase in his power.
          These are little things; but you need not laugh about them, and
          nobody but fools would laugh; for these things are our very
          I want to know of every man and woman, if you were going to place
          a sacred thing anywhere, and you were to put it in an unholy
          vessel, whether that vessel would not make it impure? Yes; and it
          will become unholy because of that cursed thing. If it is the
          most holy thing in existence, it will become corrupted by coming
          in contact with unholy things.
          I am preaching these things to my brethren and sister, that they
          may know, if they have not dedicated and consecrated their
          children to the Lord, that it has to be done. But you may
          inquire, "How shall we do it?" You will have to do it as brother
          Brigham and others have done when in Nauvoo. We had to take our
          children and wash and anoint them, and place the birthright and
          father's blessing upon them in the house of God, and then have
          them sealed to us; and you will have to do just so.
          If you do not take the right course to raise up a holy seed unto
          the Lord, but jangle and contend one with another, your children
          will not have so good a chance to get the blessings of celestial
          glory; but, in proportion as you bring yourselves in subjection,
          your children will receive the blessing of heaven.
          Just as soon as spring opens, I am going to work to put into the
          earth every kind of seed, and I want my wives to take an interest
          in these things, in raising the flax and making the cloth. They
          take a mighty interest in wearing the cloth when it is made; and
          if they will do these things, the day will come that we will be
          as rich as we can desire in all things that this earth produces.
          Our Governor will be rich, and there is not a man on God
          Almighty's earth that will begin to compare with him: he will
          swallow them all up in riches and blessings.
          I am opposed to your nasty fashions and everything you wear for
          the sake of fashion. Did you ever see me with hermaphrodite
          pantaloons on? [Voice: "Fornication pantaloons."] Our boys are
          weakening their backs and their kidneys by girting themselves up
          as they do; they are destroying the strength of their loins and
          taking a course to injure their posterity.
          Now, just look as me. I have no hips projecting out; they are
          straight down with my sides. I am serious myself, although I can
          smile and laugh when I am serious; but these ridiculous fashions
          I despise, and God knows I despise anything that will tend to
          destroy the lives of my sisters. What is your existence worth to
          you? It is worth everything to your posterity; and you ought to
          consider their interest as well as your own.
          There is not a woman in this congregation but would be as
          straight as I am, if she did not destroy her shape.
          Bless your souls, I am talking about home manufacture. I was
          speaking about it last Sunday, and I would not have said a word
          about it now, but there were a good many who felt disposed to
          ridicule brother Lorenzo D. Young's remarks; therefore I have
          spoken as I have. I want to know if some of them were not tried
          by what he said; for some of them were talking about cutting
          enough off their dresses to make frocks for babies and sending it
          to him. I wish they would send it to me--I would show them what I
          would do with it.
          Some of you are taking a course like that of the Gentile
          world--namely, to weaken and destroy the human family, and they
          are going down to death as fast as they can. Shall we follow in
          their tracks? Some of them have some up into the tops of the
          mountains for the purpose of introducing their corrupt and
          damnable practices and customs.
          You may take all such dresses and new fashions, and inquire into
          their origin, and you will find, as a general thing, they are
          produced by the whores of the great cities of the world--London,
          New York, and from Paris, and from all the Gentile cities. Now
          this is true, gentlemen, and brother Brigham, brother Taylor, and
          a great many others can bear witness of it.
          There is a new fashion that our boys have got hold of, and
          Spanish bits and bridles, and then with their hermaphrodite
          pantaloons they look ridiculous. I will speak of my own boys, for
          they are like the rest, and have to take things rough-and-tumble
          as they come in this mountain life--to go into the woods, take
          hold of a lion's beard, and tell him to stand still: their backs
          are like the women's; they are cut nearly in two with these
          cursed fashions, so that they have but little strength left in
          I understand those officers out yonder have got a good many women
          with them, and I do not believe there are twenty in the whole
          camp but that are whores, and they designed to come here to set
          you a pattern and to moralize this community. I say, Will they
          not feel pretty straight by next spring? I think they will feel
          considerably cooled off by next spring, and I have an idea that
          by that time they will feel disposed to quit their prostitution;
          and if they do not go away, we will make them march pretty quick.
          Those soldiers cannot rule over us, nor their civil officers
          either, for they are the meanest of the corruption of the world.
          It makes me angry, but I will not sin about it; but I feel
          displeased at such things.
          We shall prosper from this time forth. Now you may mark it, and
          you will see that those who will do right will prosper. I will
          tell you, if we cannot take a course to put iniquity out of our
          midst, and if men will take a course to demoralize themselves, we
          will draw the line and divide the evil from the good, and we will
          have those who corrupt themselves stay at home and let the pure
          in heart go out to war. And this is not all: I am opposed to any
          man's going into those mountains to stand between us and our
          enemies that will get drunk. We do not want any man there but
          what we can lay our hands upon and dedicate to the Lord; and we
          do not want any there but who will do that which is right in the
          sight of God and man; but we want men that will pray and keep
          their covenants sacred. In short, we want men that are acceptable
          in the sight of God: they are the men we want.
          We want the home manufacturing men; and away with your trash and
          nonsense, for I am sick of it. I do not say but I have some
          traditions about me, for I know that I have; and I wish they were
          off far away. My desire is that I may do everything that is right
          from this time forth and forever; and I feel, as I heard brother
          Brigham say, a few days ago, that I am as independent of those
          little, nasty, wicked spirits as God is upon his throne, when I
          am right myself; and so is every other man.
          It is true that we are the best people there are on the earth.
          But still there are a great many things I do not like to see; and
          one is--when men get up a party, I do not like to see drinking
          whisky the very first thing that is introduced, and especially to
          go so far as to pollute themselves. Some of you might say,
          "Brother Kimball, you boys have been doing the same thing." If
          they have, I do not fellowship them in that; but I disfellowship
          them for so doing, and so does brother Brigham and every other
          good man. I do not care whether it is a son or a wife that does
          wrong--I will not fellowship them in that wrong, for I am not
          partial: I care just as much about the English as the Irish or
          the Americans, and I guess I manifest it pretty well.
          If you cannot obey those you have seen, how can you obey those
          you never saw? You never will see those whom brother Brigham and
          his brethren represent, unless you first obey those that you see
          every day. We are God's representatives; and if you want to know
          whether you will ever go into the presence of God, I can tell you
          that you never will, unless you learn to obey your brethren. Then
          live to sustain the authorities of this kingdom by your works,
          and we shall live scores of years.
               Brother Brigham never will die by the hand of an enemy,
          neither will I, nor any of you, if you will do your duty. Brother
          Brigham is just as secure as the roots of a tree, if every limb
          performs its duty. I tell you it is hard to tell things just as a
          man has them in his mind. For my own part, I have not got the
          Now, if you are determined to destroy yourselves, I am perfectly
          willing, providing you do not destroy the fruit of your lions;
          but many of you are taking a course to destroy that by your
          ridiculous fashions.
          Now, suppose that any of you were to take a tree and tie the
          limbs in a strait place, so that they were obliged to remain in
          it, will that tree be as thrifty as those that are loose? No, it
          will not; and if you do not believe it, go into my garden, and
          you will there see trees with the limbs crossing each other at
          various angles; and the consequence is that they are gnarly or
          diminutive in size, and very inferior in appearance, and perhaps
          they will never produce any fruit.
          Do not desire your children or your children's children to stop
          their growth, and do not you take a course to render them
          impotent and imbecile. I am talking to you, ladies; and then,
          again, I am talking to you, gentlemen, that wear those
          hermaphrodite pantaloons.
          May the Lord God bless this people, and bless his servant that
          leads them; and I bless everything that sticks to him; and the
          blessings of salvation shall be with you; for I promise you these
          things in the name of Israel's God. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Brigham
          Young, February 7, 1858
                           Brigham Young, February 7, 1858
                                    IDOLATRY, &C.
              A Discourse by President Brigham Young, delivered in the
                       Great Salt Lake City, February 7, 1858.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          Through the remarks of brothers Edward Partridge and Silas Smith,
          who have lately returned from their mission to the Sandwich
          Islands, we are made acquainted with a new variety of customs;
          and I must confess that, hearing a relation of the customs and
          traditions of the natives of those islands, I am almost lead to
          believe that they are a people very much like ourselves--that
          they are entitled to the appellation of human beings. They are
          prone to wander--prone to weaknesses; and if they have any
          knowledge of God, they are prone to forget him to turn to their
          idols. They are prone to be froward in all their ways, very much
          like ourselves.
          We believe that we have been better taught, and that we are quite
          an enlightened people. Christian Europe and America deem
          themselves the most enlightened people upon the earth; and an
          equal self-confidence among those islanders is all that is
          wanting to make them believe that they know more than the
          Europeans and Americans. I have an idea that the Anglo-Saxon race
          possess more confidence in themselves and more worldly wisdom
          than any other nation upon the earth; yet take the people on the
          Sandwich and Society Islands, and the natives of these mountains
          and of the North and South America, or of any country where there
          are natives in their idolatry--those whom we call ignorant, dark,
          benighted, lost, possessed of little or no knowledge, and let a
          person understanding the Priesthood visit them, and I will
          venture to say that we would find more and better traits of the
          Priesthood of God among them than can be found among the
          Christians. And though it may appear surprising and a matter
          hardly credible, yet even we are more or less under the power of
          traditions similar to those of the heathen.
          There is a cause for their traditions, customs, and present
          practices. They have grown into their present idolatry through a
          neglect of the truth, through a proneness to wander and forget
          their God and true religion. Let this people backslide--lose
          their present faith and knowledge, and in after generations,
          perhaps, a few would cling to the Priesthood with all the vigour
          that we do, and would understand that the people were going into
          darkness, and would urge them to have some custom, some form,
          some representation or figure of their former faith and religion.
          What is commonly termed idolatry has arisen from a few sincere
          men, full of faith and having a little knowledge, urging upon a
          backsliding people to preserve some customs--to cling to some
          fashions or figures, to put them in mind of that God with whom
          their fathers were acquainted, without designing or wishing the
          people to worship an idol--to worship stocks, stones, beasts, and
          birds. Idols have been introduced, which are now worshipped, and
          have been for centuries and thousands of years; but they were not
          introduced at once. They were introduced to preserve among the
          people the idea of the true God.
          I have frequently said, and say again, that there are and always
          have been a great many in this Church that are not Saints. There
          are more "Mormons" that Saints; and there are different degrees
          and grades of "Mormons" and of Saints. There are many that are
          "Mormons" that are not Saints; and so it will be until Jesus
          comes to separate the sheep from the goats; or, in other
          language, until the Husbandman shall bid his servants gather the
          wheat into the barn, and the tares into bundles to be burned.
          This must be; this we all believe and understand.
          If we are not all Saints, the most of this people are trying to
          be. If we are not as perfect in our sphere as are the angels, we
          are trying to prepare ourselves to become so. We have not yet
          received our inheritances; but we are trying to prepare ourselves
          to be worthy to receive them. Yet it can readily be understood
          that if this people should backslide, they would, as others have,
          introduce an idolatrous worship. All Protestants accuse the Roman
          Catholic Church of worshipping idols. It is the practice of its
          members to carry a cross with them to worship the Virgin Mary.
          They have paintings and images in their chapels and other places
          of worship; and they are accused of worshipping these paintings
          and images, and that they are idolatrous worshippers. But those
          representations were introduced in the same way that a father
          would show his children that Jesus Christ is actually a man like
          their father, by showing them a figure representing Jesus as
          extended upon the cross, and saying, "This gives you, my
          children, an idea that he was a man." Now, let those children,
          when saying their prayers, have that representation before them,
          and how long would it be before some of the neighbours' children
          would tell their mothers that those children were worshipping a
          picture or image? This is the way that idolatry has sprung up in
          the world, through a method established to keep the people in
          remembrance of the God they once worshipped and were acquainted
          Do the Christian world know whether God has eyes to see, ears to
          hear, or hands, or a body? They are as ignorant of the true God
          as are those islanders, and all whom we call heathen. And our
          traditions are such that we are yet more or less in the dark, and
          are under the necessity of assembling here from Sabbath to
          Sabbath, and in ward meetings, and besides, have to call our
          solemn assemblies, to teach, talk pray, sing, and exhort. What
          for? to keep us in remembrance of our God and our holy religion.
          Is this custom necessary? Yes; because we are so liable to
          forget--so prone to wander, that we need to have the Gospel
          sounded in our ears as much as once, twice, or thrice a week, or,
          behold, we will turn again to our idols. It is immaterial what
          the idol is, whether it is what the Californians call a slug, or
          whether it is a twenty-dollar gold piece, or an eagle, or
          half-eagle, or whether our affections and attention fasten upon
          our farms, horses, and other worldly goods,--if we are not
          constantly exhorting the people and setting before them the
          necessity of living their religion, calling back their minds that
          have been wandering, and preaching and praying with them, behold,
          they would turn to their idols.
          Were the Lord to give us peace for a few years, so that we should
          have no sorrow or trouble from without, and the land producing
          abundantly, with the fine weather and the healthy climate, how
          long would it be before many of you would again want to go to
          California to get gold, and turn away from you holy religion to
          worship an idol? Rather than neglect your holy religion entirely,
          you had better keep your images right before you eyes and say
          your prayers to an idol, whether it be cut out of wood or is a
          dog's skull, so that you believe there is something behind that
          which will actually point your affections to look beyond that
          which you see with your natural eyes, and cause you to believe in
          a Supreme Being, in a Overruling Hand, in a All-wise Providence,
          or to worship even a god without body or parts. Are we under
          traditions to the same extent that some others are? Perhaps not.
          We do not think we are; and yet we have our traditions upon us;
          and if we are not careful, we are liable to become as great
          idolaters as there are in the world.
          Brother Silas Smith has just told you that he had not been at
          home four days when he heard his name called for another mission;
          and he says the he is ready and willing, of which I have not
          doubt; for I never knew him when he was not willing to do
          anything that he was told to do. We say that we are willing to do
          anything required to sustain us in our religious rights--to
          sacrifice our all for our religion and the hope that is before
          us. Brother Clapp has just taught us that we are not worthy of
          eternal life, unless we are willing to sacrifice all. Brother
          Clapp, what have you to give? ["Everything I have."] But you have
          not got anything. John, what are you willing to give for eternal
          life? You say, "Everything." What have you got? Consider well
          what you have. Says he, "I live here, I have my life." No, you
          have not; for it is in the hand of your Creator. "I have a wife."
          She is only committed to you to enable you to prove whether you
          will treat her in a righteous manner: she is not yet yours. "I
          have children that are the offspring of my loins." They are not
          yours; for you cannot produce them of yourself. "I have a farm."
          No; that farm belongs to another. The devil says that it is his;
          but we expect Jesus will have the whole earth. "I have horses and
          possessions." Reflect well, and consider whether you really own
          anything. Upon reflection, you discern at once that your wife may
          be taken from you; your farm and your other possessions may be
          taken; and your gold and silver may take the wings of the morning
          and fly from you. If God withdraws his sustaining hand, you sink.
          You have no wife, children, horses, houses, nor land.
          When men and women talk about giving everything for the salvation
          which they anticipate and live for. Behold, they have nothing to
          give; nor have they anything to do, only to do their duty. And
          what is that? To improve upon that which is committed to their
          possession--to prove themselves worthy to their Father and God,
          that ere long they may be worthy to receive crowns of glory,
          immortality, and eternal life. Then we shall be beyond the power
          of Satan. We shall be where we can control death and him that has
          the power of death; and we shall reign triumphantly as the Gods
          and as the sons of God. We must inherit that power and glory
          before we can say that we really own anything, even the least
          thing in this world or in eternity.
          Some persons talk about sacrificing; but we have nothing to
          sacrifice. All we have to do is to live and serve our God, and do
          everything we can to bring knowledge to ourselves and to the
          people--everything we can to make them happy, wealthy, strong,
          and numerous, so that we may overcome the powers of darkness and
          reign triumphantly on the earth, Jesus Christ being our head and
          king. That is all we have to do. Tell about houses, lands, and
          other property being ours, and that we have not traditions and
          idols? I would as soon see a man worshipping a little god made of
          brass or of wood as see him worship his property. I have a number
          of such gods brought to me from the East Indies and from the
          islands; and I would as soon see one of my brethren worship one
          of those brass idols as to see him worship his property; and he
          would be as much justified in the sight of God. Does this
          congregation understand what idolatry is? The New testament says
          that covetousness is idolatry; therefore, a covetous people is an
          idolatrous people.
          Some of you are just as much idolaters as are the heathen, but
          you do not know it; neither do they realize their idolatry. Were
          I on the islands and seeing the natives bow before their images
          to be healed, I would say, "Have faith." And instead of
          disfellowshipping a man for worshiping an idol, I would exhort
          him to exceeding great faith in his idols, upon the same
          principle that I exhort the brethren here to have faith in our
          God. "And if your idol will not heal you, look beyond to that
          Being who can." I am not for cutting people off from the Church
          that worship their property instead of their God, but for bearing
          with them until they shall gain light and knowledge so as to see
          their errors and turn to the God of truth. I would say to
          idolaters, "If you have faith in an idol, have a little more; and
          if you have faith enough the Lord may work upon your minds so
          that you can understand the blessings he has in store for his
          people. And I say to the men and women who profess to be
          Latter-day Saints, "God giveth and he withholdeth; at his
          pleasure he raises up and puts down kings, emperors, thrones, and
          dominions; and the power and wisdom and glory of the Almighty,
          who fills immensity and operates upon all things, will prevail."
          What good can our wealth do, were it not to promote the cause of
          God upon the earth, overcome the power of Satan, and be used to
          bring forth righteousness and overcome darkness? That is
          dedicating ourselves and all we are made stewards over to the
          building up of the cause of God on earth. In so doing we can be
          justified. We cannot receive the glory, the kingdoms, the
          thrones, the wisdom, and the power that are designed for us,
          without a close application in our studies and our efforts in our
          whole lives to build up the kingdom of God on the earth. We need
          to apply our minds to wisdom as strongly and closely as brother
          Silas Smith had to apply his mind to learn the language of the
          natives, that he might be able to teach them his ideas without
          trusting to their passing through the mouth of another. No matter
          how much of the Spirit a teacher has, if his words have to be
          interpreted by one who has not the Spirit; the people are not
          benefitted; "For the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life."
          No matter how much a man preaches, nor how much of the Holy Ghost
          he has,--the spirit may be edified, but he understanding will
          remain unfruitful. And if we trust to some other person to bring
          forth the hidden things of the kingdom, we are all the time
          dependent on an interpreter who has not the Holy Ghost, we cannot
          grow rapidly in the knowledge of the truth.
          We must live so that our knowledge and faith shall reach beyond
          the ideal, no matter what that is; and we must have knowledge of
          the living God for ourselves. The people wish to know whether
          they cannot find out the living God. Yes, just as quickly as you
          are prepared; but you much cease worshipping idols. Then, when
          persons say they are willing to sacrifice their all for the
          kingdom of God, they will do it without whining. Then, if a Ward
          is required to perform a certain work, they will not complain
          about it. Then they will be apt to cast their idols behind them,
          and will not so worship and covet a beautiful span of horses that
          they will not let them go to save the whole house of Israel. But
          in the first place, they have nothing to sacrifice; in the second
          place, God has given them enough with which to benefit his
          kingdom; and thirdly, if it is not on hand when required,
          by-and-by it will be said, "Take from those persons what they
          seem to have and give it to those who are worthy--who can dispose
          of their property to build up the kingdom of God." It will be
          said of us all, unless we improve upon what we have, "Take that
          which they seem to have, and give it to those who improve upon
          their talents and will gain more."
          Whether you can see it or not, I know that this people are more
          or less prone to idolatry; for I see that spirit manifested every
          day, and hear of it from nearly every quarter. We must stop
          worshipping idols. We are in the possession of the keys of the
          kingdom; the eternal Priesthood is committed to this people, and
          we are blessed as are no other people of which we have any
          knowledge. This people have the words of life--the way of life
          and salvation: they know how to save themselves and all that will
          cleave to them. Now, what is demanded at our hands? Is it to pray
          that we may be faithful? It seems to be a burlesque. It is most
          disgraceful to be under the necessity of saying, "Brethren and
          sisters, let us be faithful." Rather so obtain a particle of
          wisdom before God that we can see our own standing, what we are
          called to do, and understand what is bestowed upon us. You might
          as well pray for the angels to be faithful as for this people. If
          you could see and understand things as they are, your whole
          souls, minds affections, lives, and everything at your control
          would be sealed up in God and his work. Then would it be, "You
          cannot take my horses, for I cannot spare them?" No. Who cares
          for all the horses in the world? The Devil says that he has claim
          on them, and he means to devote them to his use. I will see that
          all the horses, mules, gold, silver, clothing, and people
          belonging to this Church are devoted to the kingdom of Christ,
          God being my helper; and I will out-general the Devil, and baffle
          him in every turn, and head him in every nook and corner; and he
          shall be turned hither and thither as the Lord will. I am
          determined, in the name of Israel's God, to see the Devil whipped
          from the earth, and out-generaled and fooled in all his schemes,
          and whirled about by this Church until he is glad to leave the
          earth and go to his own place; and then we will see whether or
          not the Lord God has all things that belong to him.
          Compare our position and situation with that of the rest of the
          world; look at the inhabitants of the earth, and try to
          understand the object of our being on this earth, the object of
          the forming and peopling this earth, and designing and decreeing
          that things should be thus and so. Try to understand why our
          first parents partook of the forbidden fruit, and why Jesus came
          to the earth to redeem fallen man. I always try to learn why
          things are suffered to proceed on the earth as they do.
          If you get an understanding to know the purposes and designs of
          our Creator in framing and peopling this earth, do you think that
          I should be under the necessity of exhorting you to say that you
          will sacrifice your all for eternal life? The idea is
          nonsensical. Should I be under the necessity of exhorting you to
          live your religion and cling to your God? If we should not come
          to meeting during the next sixteen years, and if we had never met
          since the brethren were driven from Jackson County, every one
          would live his religion. If this people had understood what they
          ought, the early Elders might have lived in foreign nations and
          preached the Gospel until this day, and they would then have been
          better prepared to worship God acceptably than many are now; and
          this people would have been more cautious, better prepared, and
          more contented to practise what they know, instead of searching
          after things that do not concern them.
          We know enough to damn us; and when we know enough for that, we
          know enough to save us, if that knowledge is improved upon. We
          are a happy people. We are the only people on earth that
          acknowledge God and truly believe in him. The Christian and
          heathen world profess to believe in him; and the jews say that
          they believe in him: but they do not believe in Jesus Christ. The
          Christians profess to believe in Jesus Christ; but, if he told
          the truth, not one of them really believes in him. I do not doubt
          their honesty; but I doubt the manifestation of any knowledge
          they have of him; for if they were his disciples, they would do
          the works which he did. That alone is positive proof to me that
          they neither believe in him nor have any idea what he designs
          concerning them. They may be honest and sincere; but they are
          very ignorant. This people have the true knowledge; they have it
          not. We have the Priesthood; they have it not. We have the way of
          life and salvation; they have it not. We know how to be
          Saints--how to save ourselves and all who will hearken to our
          counsel; they do not.
          Now, ask yourselves, is there any necessity of preaching,
          praying, teaching, and exhorting, to learn us our duty and make
          us Saints? It is almost labour lost. You heard brother Silas say
          that if the Elders should leave those islands, in a few years the
          natives who have embraced the Gospel would be as bad as they ever
          were. If there is nothing more of them than that--if they have no
          desire to do good--no power in themselves to keep them from
          giving way to the Devil, unless there is an Elder from Great Salt
          Lake to watch them, the quicker they are damned the better. I
          would not, in such a case, walk five rods for the whole of them.
          If they do not know enough, after what they have been taught, to
          save themselves, they will be damned, and I will not ask another
          Elder to wear out his strength and waste his energies in so
          useless a work.
          Those islanders and the natives of this country are of the house
          if Israel--of the seed of Abraham, and to them pertain the
          promises; and every soul of the, sooner or later, will be saved
          in the kingdom of God, or be destroyed root and branch. If they
          do not choose in this probation to take the path that leads to
          life, let them go their own road. The honest in heart in all
          nations and generations whoa re worthy to receive any salvation
          will receive, sooner or later and I do not care how quick the
          Lord Almighty cleans the floor; for then we will build up Zion
          and redeem the honest in heart. But it is not for me to know the
          times and the seasons: it is for me to be contented in the
          discharge of my duty today, and let tomorrow bring forth what it
          May the Lord bless you, brethren and sisters. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Orson
          Pratt, January 24, 1859
                            Orson Pratt, January 24, 1859
           A Discourse by Elder Orson Pratt, delivered in the Tabernacle,
              Great Salt Lake City, Sunday Afternoon, January 24, 1859.
                               Reported by J. V. Long.
          Once more I have the opportunity of beholding the faces of the
          Latter-day Saints here in the valleys of the mountains. I begin
          to be almost weary in trying to carry salvation to the wicked
          nations of the Gentiles; and because of the many years that I
          have spent on missions, I find myself almost a stranger in the
          midst of the Saints at home. There are now but very few that I
          can recognize. There are many that have known me for upwards of a
          quarter-of-a-century that I have forgotten.
          I have felt, since I started for home this last time, that I
          should, perhaps, be permitted to tarry with you longer than I
          have had the privilege of doing at any former period of my life.
          If any one should ask me where my home has been for the last
          quarter-of-a-century, I should answer--Among the nations; for
          that has been my principal abiding place ever since the year
               When I received a letter from the President, releasing me
          from the Office at Liverpool, and also releasing all the
          missionaries in that country, without specifying in the letter
          what time I should return. I immediately felt a great desire to
          return this winter; and by this means I believe I have saved to
          myself some six or seven months time that I can dwell here in the
          midst of the Saints; and at this peculiar period I feel that it
          will be a great blessing to me to be with you,-- that if you have
          to share toils and tribulations in having your enemies upon your
          borders, I may share them with you; and that if you have peculiar
          blessings bestowed upon your heads, that I also may be made a
          partaker of them.
          Should my brethren say to me "Brother Orson, we wish you to take
          a mission, now, to China, or to the East Indies, or to any other
          part of this globe, and tarry there twenty-seven years before you
          return to your home," I would go. Yes, I would gladly go, and
          feel that it was my duty, and that I was pleasing God in obeying
          the counsel of his servants.
          The Lord sent forth this message some twenty-eight years ago;
          and, during this period, the servants of the Lord have been sent
          out especially to the Gentile nations, that their times might be
          fulfilled, and to give them an opportunity of receiving the
          truth. Those servants have gone forth, though in their weakness;
          and, with very few exceptions, they have been very faithful in
          their duties. They have fulfilled that parable that is recorded
          in the Book of Mormon, where the labourers are said to have gone
          forth and laboured with their might, and the Lord of the vineyard
          laboured with them; and it predicts that they should be faithful
          in keeping the commandments of the Lord of the vineyard in all
          We must, therefore, draw this one conclusion--that the testimony
          that has been borne to the Gentile nations is sufficient, so far
          as our weak judgment can comprehend, to condemn them all, if they
          never hear another sound from the voices of the servants of God
          while they exist in the flesh. Why is it enough? Has every
          individual among the nations of the Gentiles been preached to? I
          will tell you what has been done.
          Thousands and tens of thousands of large congregations have been
          preached to in the United States and in Great Britain. Thousands
          and thousands of the servants of God have lifted up their voices,
          day after day, week after week, month after month, and year after
          year, and warned the nations; and the Lord told us, more than
          twenty years ago, that he had sent forth his servants to warn the
          people, and it became those who had been warned to warn their
          neighbours. The Lord, more than twenty years ago, said to his
          servants, "Your garments are clean from the blood of this
          Where is there a Gentile nation upon this earth, if they were to
          be destroyed this very day, that could come up before the Lord of
          Hosts and plead any excuse before him for not knowing concerning
          the latter-day message which has been sent forth? According to my
          feelings upon this subject, I believe that they have been fully
          warned, beginning with the nation of the United States that
          inhabit this promised land. They have also been thoroughly warned
          in Great Britain. The nations of Europe have been offered the
          message; but they would not receive it. It seems to me, according
          to my judgment, and according to the vast amount of testimony
          that has bee sounded in their ears, that they are delivered over,
          not as individuals, but as nations, to the hardness of their own
          hearts, to fight against the work of God.
          The Lord says, in the preface of the Book of Covenants, "Search
          these commandments; for every jot and every tittle shall be
          fulfilled, and not one word shall fail." The inhabitants of the
          earth were commanded to search those commandments; and you will
          find in that preface that the Lord told the inhabitants of the
          earth that his servants, the weak things of the earth that he was
          then sending forth, had power to seal both on earth and in heaven
          the unbelieving,--yea, verily, to seal them up into the day when
          the wrath of God shall be poured out upon the wicked without
          Now, the Lord moves upon the hearts of our First Presidency to
          say to the Elders of Israel Abroad, "It is enough: come home.
          Your testimony is sufficient. The wicked reject it; they fight
          against it: therefore you may now return to these mountains and
          valleys. Return from the nations of Europe, return from the
          nations of Africa, return from Great Britain, from the United
          States, and from the Canadas, and come home to these mountains."
          In sending forth a message of this kind to the Elders, what does
          it show? Why, it closes for the present the testimony of the
          servants of God, and shows that the warning is sufficient, and
          that both earth and heaven bear witness that the Gentiles are
          left without excuse.
          Apparently, all the devils that brother Kimball and the other
          brethren saw in a vision on their first mission to England seem
          now to have entered into the tabernacles of the people; and you
          can see them gnash their teeth at the Saints, just as they were
          seen by brother Kimball; for the Devil influences them and makes
          them instruments to fight against the people of God.
          Read the vision of Nephi, where the Lord showed him the sending
          forth of this message to the nations;--"And it came to pass that
          I looked and beheld the whore of all the earth; and she sat upon
          many waters, and she had dominion over all the earth, among all
          nations, kindreds, tongues, and people. And it came to pass that
          I beheld the Church of the Lamb of God; and its numbers were few,
          because of the wickedness and the abominations of the whore who
          sat upon many waters. Nevertheless, I beheld that the Church of
          the Lamb, were also upon all the face of the earth; and their
          dominions upon the face of the earth were small, because of the
          wickedness of the great whore whom I saw. And it came to pass
          that I beheld that the great mother of abominations did gather
          together in multitudes upon all the face of the earth, among all
          the nations of the Gentiles, to fight against the Lamb of God.
          And it came to pass that I, Nephi, beheld the power of the Lamb
          of God, that it descended upon the Saints of the Church of the
          Lamb, and upon the covenant people of the Lord, who were
          scattered upon all the face of the earth; and they were armed
          with righteousness and with the power of God in great glory."
          [Book of Mormon, 1st Book of Nephi, chap. iii, 47-50.
          What is it going to increase righteousness and the power of God
          upon the Saints that are scattered abroad upon the face of the
          earth? It is the increase of righteousness here at head-quarters;
          and as branches of the great vine of the same Church, they will
          feel the influence of the same Spirit, even before the
          intelligence can reach them by letter. When you reform and turn
          away from your sins--when you practise righteousness here, the
          Saints of God abroad feel stirred up to do the same things, and
          the Spirit of the Lord rests upon them the same as it does upon
          the people here, only not to the same extent, because you live at
          head-quarters, at the fountain head, and you have a greater
          experience; therefore, you experience, righteousness, and
          faithfulness, entitle you to more choice gifts than those that
          have not the same experience.
          The power of God will rest upon the Saints of the valleys first,
          and then upon the Saints in all the world, just in proportion to
          their righteousness. The Lord is going to increase power here
          among the people. Have we any dangerous circumstances to pass
          through that render it necessary that more power should be made
          manifest? Have we got to bear testimony to kings and to rulers of
          the earth at the present time? No, we are not called to do this;
          but those who are in the nations abroad may have this to do.
          What, then, is needful to be done? We have got a different work
          to do than what we have had for the last quarter-of-a-century.
          You recollect that the Lord has said he would try and prove us in
          one scale, and then he would try us in another, and see if we
          would be faithful in carrying out the principles of salvation.
          When we were thus tried, we went forth and whipped out the
          religious world spiritually. Their priests, their lawyers, their
          doctors, their great men, their discussionists, and their wise
          men have all been whipped and backed out,--so much so that they
          have confessed that they could not stand before the powerful
          reasoning of the servants of God and the power which accompanied
          the great latter-day message. But now we have to be tried in
          another point. We have whipped them out so far as their doctrines
          are concerned, and they have now come up to try physical force
          upon us.
          I do not know that the Lord would have sent us down there to
          drive them if they had not first come against us. But they have
          come up with sword in hand, with the best engines and implements
          of war, with their best disciplined armies, their scientific
          officers, with men that profess to have skill in all the arts of
          warfare and ability to whip out the few Saints here in the
          Do you think that that God who has enabled his Saints to fight
          moral and spiritual battles, to array argument against argument
          and principle against principle in all the contest which they
          have been called to have, and who has brought them off
          victorious,--do you think he will not defend them at this time
          also? If he has supported us in all these things, do you suppose
          that he is going to allow us to be overcome by those who have
          persecuted his servants, and to let out necks be trampled down
          under their feet? If I have any understanding of Ancient and
          modern prophecy and of the spirit that is in me, the Lord intends
          to perform his part of the work for the deliverance of his
          I must say to the Latter-day Saints throughout this Territory,
          that the same God who has strengthened them to overcome their
          enemies spiritually will be their defence, and his power and
          strength and his arm will be stretched out for their deliverance.
          When you go to meet your enemies, they shall be prostrated before
          you, and you shall overcome them. And as you have overcome their
          priests by the strong force of argument, so shall you literally
          and physically put your enemies to flight, and one shall chase a
          thousand, and two shall put ten thousand to flight; and this you
          will do by the power and strength of that God who fought for
          Israel in ancient days.
          Have we any ancient prophecy upon this subject? yes, we have; and
          let us bring it up; for we now live about the time that the
          mother of abominations was to gather together and fight against
          the Saints.
               In the last chapter of the 1st Book of Nephi, paragraph 3,
          the Prophet says--"And all that fight against Zion shall be
          destroyed, and that great whore who hath perverted the right ways
          of the Lord--yea, that great and abominable church shall tumble
          to the dust, and great shall be the fall of it. For behold, saith
          the Prophet, the time cometh speedily, that Satan shall have no
          more power over the hearts of the children of men; for the day
          soon cometh that all the proud and they who do wickedly shall be
          as stubble, and the day cometh that they must be burned. For the
          time soon cometh that the fulness of the wrath of God shall be
          poured out upon all the children of men; for he will not suffer
          that the wicked shall destroy the righteous. Wherefore he will
          preserve the righteous by his power, even if it so that the
          fulness of his wrath must come, and the righteous be preserved,
          even unto the destruction of their enemies by fire. Wherefore the
          righteous need not fear, for thus saith the Prophet, they shall
          be saved, even if it so be as by fire."
          Nephi looked upon these things and saw the condition that the
          people would be in, and therefore he said "You need not fear." Do
          you hear it, Latter-day Saints? You need not fear, for the Lord
          will preserve his people, even if it must needs be that he sends
          fire down from heaven to destroy the wicked and those that preach
          false doctrines to the children of men, even the whore of all the
          earth; for they must tremble and fall and crumble to dust.
          I feel as strong, and I do not know but stronger, in regard to
          the work that is now before the Saints, than I ever have done in
          bearing testimony to the truth of the Gospel. I have always felt
          that God would give me wisdom, argument, and testimony to
          confound gainsayers and opposers of the truth; and thus God has
          enabled me to do. I have the same feeling to-day,--not that we
          have the strength to do it ourselves, but I know that God will
          strengthen us for the work we have to do.
          Though the Lord may suffer our enemies to come and invade our
          borders, and though we have been driven and trampled upon, and
          though we have laid down our necks for them to tread upon, he has
          now got us here, where he will show forth his power.
          He has let us rest in these peaceful valleys in safety and in
          quietness for some ten years, and now he seems to say to the
          wicked, "Inasmuch as you will not give heed to the testimony of
          my servants, and you are determined to invade their borders, go
          up and try it, and I will show you that I will gird on my
          strength and arm my servants, and they shall defend my cause."
          It will be just as the Lord said in December, 1830--"I will call
          the weak of the earth, and I will gird up their loins; and they
          shall fight manfully for me, and their enemies shall be under
          their feet." he also says, "I will not only shake the earth, but
          the starry heavens also; and the inhabitants of the earth shall
          know that you are my people, because of the power and the
          strength that shall be manifest in defending yourselves against
          your enemies." This is what the Lord intends to do.
          It needed the United States as a nation or as a government to
          unjustly come up against us, in order to bring about these
          things. How many scores and hundreds sit in this congregation
          that have never been in one solitary mob? Have you been tried
          with persecution and mobbing and death? Have you been tried at
          the mouth of the cannon or at the point of the bayonet? No--many
          of you have not; hence a trail is needful. Can you expect the
          power of God without a trial of your faith? It is expedient that
          you have a trial of your faith. It would be one of the easiest
          things in the world for the Almighty to send fire and brimstone
          upon the earth and destroy our enemies, or to swallow them up by
          an earthquake as he did in days of Israel.
          In those days the Lord enabled Israel to overcome the Hittites,
          the Hivites, the Jebusites, &c. How easy it would have been for
          the Lord to have destroyed them by earthquake, or by fire, or by
          something of this kind! But he did not do it,--and why? Because
          he wanted to do several things at the same time: he wanted to
          destroy the wicked, and to see if his servants would flinch in
          the hour of danger. The Lord is going to defend this people, but
          not without their agency. He is not going to let us sit upon our
          easy chairs and not expose ourselves. If we were to do this, we
          should not be worthy of the kingdom of God. He offers the kingdom
          and says it is ours, upon certain conditions.
          What else does he say? "My Church shall be free and independent
          of all creatures beneath the celestial world." Have we been free
          from the United States? No, we have not; but we are to be made
          free from every government upon the face of the earth; and
          wherever there is any dominion that is beneath that of the
          celestial world, we are to be free from it.
          Now, suppose the Lord had offered us all these things, and we
          should sit down and not move a finger for the blessings he had
          given, should we be worthy of them? No, not at all. We should be
          in this condition, if we were suffered to take possession of
          these blessings without any trials.
          If we are dilatory, we shall have to suffer as in days gone by,
          and our enemies will come in here and bring in their whoredoms
          and abominations that they have been accustomed to from their
          youth up. This will be the case, if we do not save ourselves by
          our diligence and obedience. But if we show to God that we are
          willing to stand up in behalf of his kingdom and of the truth,
          even unto death, then, notwithstanding our enemies may be two
          hundred to our one, we shall feel strong in the Lord, and he will
          fight our battles. Then we shall accomplish that which has been
          promised by the Prophets; and not only the United States will
          have to suffer, but as the Prophet Isaiah says--"The multitude of
          the nations that fight against Zion shall become like the dream
          of a night vision, as when a man who is hungry dreameth that he
          is satisfied with food, and he awaketh and behold he is faint."
          So will be all nations who fight against this people: they will
          pass away before the power of the servants of God. His servants
          will be clothed with wisdom and with the power of the Most High
          to prevail against all their enemies.
          We would let the poor curses alone, if they would stay at home
          and mind their own business. The American continent never was
          designed for such a corrupt Government as the United States' to
          flourish or prosper long upon it. After they should become
          ripened in iniquity, it was not intended they should continue.
          The Lord has designed another thing, and for this reason we are
          here in these mountains: the little stone has been rolling up
          If our enemies keep coming up here, after the Lord has shown his
          power and enabled his servants to cope with them, if they still
          continue to fight against Zion, the Saints of God will roll down
          upon their borders and take them upon their own lands. But before
          that day comes, we have to show our wisdom by skirmishes and in
          various conditions in which we shall be placed; and we have got
          to show the nations that God intends to do something here in the
          When he has done this, we shall then roll down to the borders of
          Missouri and take possession of your inheritances, from which we
          have been illegally and unconstitutionally driven.
          Brother Kimball says we could not roll down until we rolled up.
          But we have been rolling up hill for the past ten years, in
          fulfillment of the predictions of Isaiah, which says--"O Zion
          that bringest glad tidings, get thee up into the high mountain;"
          and having rolled up for ten years, we shall soon begin to roll
          down. But I do not think it will take ten years to roll down
          hill; for we shall be propelled by the power of God, and the work
          will be hastened.
          The power of God will be with us, and the Lord God will redeem
          Zion, as he redeemed Israel in Egypt; and not only his angels,
          but his presence will go before us, and the nations of the earth
          shall fear because of the power of God which shall accompany us.
          Then will be the time that the Gentiles can be preached to by the
          Elders with some sense; or rather, they will be preached to by
          Israel that is scattered amongst them. Then, brethren, you can go
          and preach to them, and say the power of God is with you, and say
          to the people, Look yonder, and behold the children of Zion
          delivered by the power of God; and then you will be respected.
          Then you can go the palaces of the great and preach to the king
          upon his throne, to the great men, to the nobles, and rich men of
          the earth,; and many will fear, and receive your testimony, and
          flow to Zion, bringing their riches with them. But now you could
          not go into their fine palaces, nor find access to their rich and
          splendid mansions. You could not get them to hear you for one
          moment. No: they would degrade you, if possible, to the lowest
          There is not a people upon the face of the earth that were ever
          degraded like the Latter-day Saints. They look upon you worse
          than they do upon any set of pirates that travel the open
          seas,--that is, if they believe their own words; for they
          circulate these things in their lectures and in their
          periodicals; and there is not use to try to preach to them, but
          let the Lord work with them and with this people.
          Let the Lord purify his kingdom, and let the most bitter branches
          be pruned off,--not by some means entirely independent of the
          Saints; but let the people go to work to trim off such bitter
          branches as Missouri and Illinois, because of their wickedness
          and mobocracy; and then the nations will begin to see that there
          is power there. Yes, trim them up, in order that the natural
          branches that bear fruit may bear more fruit--that Zion, in other
          words, may increase her tents and stretch forth her curtains,
          even the curtains of her habitations, and make not only the
          desolate cities of Zion, but the desolate cities of the Gentiles
          to resound with songs of praise to him that sitteth upon the
          throne and to the Lamb forever and ever. This is what the Prophet
          says about it:--"And their desolate cities shall be built up and
          be inhabited by the Saints of the Most High." God will bring
          about this work; and as to our being overcome in these valleys of
          the mountains, it will not be, if this people do as they are
          told--if they are will to do right in all things.
          If this people will hearken to the law of God, and in everything
          be humble and meek, and keep his commandments by day and by
          night, from one year's end to another, we shall be, as it is said
          in the parable of the vineyard, as one body--as the roots and
          tops of the great tree which the Lord God has planted and made
          equal, so that the top will not jostle over because there is not
          sufficient strength in the roots.
          I want to see this people of one heart and of one mind; and when
          the word comes forth, I want to have them as well-disciplined as
          the Gentiles, and ten thousand time better.
          This is the people who have the right to be of one mind for the
          defence of Zion, for the defence of their wives and children, for
          the defence of the vineyards, and their flocks and herds, but
          more especially for the defence of the kingdom of the Most High
          Let this be the main object of this people. You know that is is
          the kingdom of God or nothing! Therefore may righteousness be our
          object from this time for and for ever. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Joseph
          Young, October 11, 1857
                           Joseph Young, October 11, 1857
             Remarks by President Joseph Young, made in the Tabernacle,
              Great Salt Lake City, Sunday Afternoon, October 11, 1857.
                               Reported by J. V. Long.
          I not allow myself to make any apologies when I get up to speak
          because it is against my feelings--it is against my principle.
          I have listened to what brother Lorenzo has said, and I have felt
          well. It is my desire, if I suggest anything, to suggest that
          which is profitable--which will do good. Language is too frail to
          express the rich sentiments of the hearts of the Saints; the
          tongue fails to utter the glory and the pleasures of the kingdom
          of God. It cannot do it; language fails. There is a display of
          the Holy Spirit in the understanding that surpasses all language;
          it cannot be told; it is past being told or described. This is
          right; it is as it should be, for language is poor: the best we
          know of is poor.
          I am not precisely like some of our Elders who think that unless
          somebody is talking all the time, nobody can be edified. It is
          true that we come together to be edified by hearing each other
          speak: but when a body of people come together, that body should
          bring the agency of the Holy Spirit with them; and I drink of the
          fountain of intelligence, whether any body speaks or not.
          We have prayed many years--we have sought many years for the
          blessing which we now begin to enjoy.
          I feel to rejoice in these things. I feel to be glad at the
          prospects that are before us. I feel to be glad;and whatever may
          be the result of the present crisis, I am glad in my heart. I
          never felt so in my life; and it is not I alone, but it is the
          whole people of the Saints. I believe that in this thing we all
          feel pretty much in the same spirit. I know that as long as we
          dwell in mortality, it is impossible for us to obtain that
          happiness which is in store for the sanctified. It is impossible
          for me, at the present, to obtain and retain the fulness of that
          pure spirit that I wish to obtain.
          We dwell in impure elements--in an atmosphere that is as has been
          corroding from the beginning, for it is controlled by the Devil,
          the "prince and power of the air." But we can seek the atmosphere
          that comes from heaven, and that is pure. When we came to dwell
          in the tabernacles that are so corrupt, we were placed very far
          beneath the high privileges we shall attain to. We mix ourselves
          with the spirit of the times; we condescend to weaknesses that
          the time will come when we shall be ashamed of before the angels
          and before sanctified beings.
          When we condescend to anything that is mean, we feel ashamed; we
          feel the blush to come upon us, and we know that is not in
          keeping with the Holy Spirit. I presume it is so with you. I feel
          assured that you are somewhat sensible of your weaknesses. If the
          enemies of the Saints should make inroads upon the privileges of
          the Saints of God, what will it argue.
          If such should be the case, it will argue that their hearts are
          not united. I do not presume to say that this will be the result
          of the present contest; but, on the contrary, I believe that this
          people are so much united that God will hold his hand over them,
          for they are his favourites-they are the seed of his choosing;
          and there his power, however variable it may be, will ever be
          I must prophesy. I feel it in me all the time, because I see
          something of the faith and prayers of this people year after
          year; and hence I must prophesy. It has been a hard struggle with
          the people of God, and you have read and thought how the Saints
          must succumb; but it has seemed a sort of second nature that the
          enemies of truth must persecute the people of God; and when they
          are out of their reach, they must still follow them up and
          persecute them with a perseverance that is worthy of a better
          There is a handful of people in these valleys. They have come to
          erect his temple, build the towers of Zion, to attend to the
          ordinances of the Gospel, and prepare for the great things that
          await the earth. All our children, and a large portion of our
          brethren and sisters, and a large portion that persecuted their
          brethren and sisters here have all got to learn that God has made
          all of one blood, and that we are all the children of our common
          parent. They follow us up here, and what for? To shed the blood
          of Prophets and Apostles and all good men. Yes, we can say it has
          been so ever since the commencement of this work.
          Our enemies are not sane. They are no more sane after they set
          their hands against this people. The administrators of the
          Government that we live under are just a insane as they can be.
          They do not comprehend that those men who stand at our head hold
          the keys of salvation; but I do believe that they have a desire
          in them to extirpate the last vestige of hope that is upon the
          earth. This is the folly and meanest of man, to destroy those who
          hold the power and the keys of salvation to the inhabitants of
          the whole earth!
          Who is it that is at the head of this? It is the Devil, the
          mighty Lucifer, the great prince of the angels, and the brother
          of Jesus. He left the province of his Father, and took with him a
          third part of his Father's kingdom, and there was no other
          alternative but to banish him. God would have saved him if he
          could; but he could not. Lucifer and all his host went away to
          themselves, and they are our foes; they are after us, and they
          are after this whole people; and I tell you they are as thick as
          I want them. Perhaps the air is clearer here than in any other
          place; but perhaps I am wrong. There may be more devils here than
          in any other country, and we are certainly more free from their
          power than any other people under heaven. Be this as it may, I
          know that there is a victory to be gained, and we have to gain
          that victory.
          It reminds me of an anecdote of a man who was travelling. He saw
          a devil as he was travelling, and the devil was asleep; and he
          was asked the reason, and the answer was, the people were asleep.
          When he came back, the devil was running. He inquired what was
          the matter; and the answer was, the people are waked up. It has
          been precisely so from the time that Joseph Smith found the
          plates: the Devil has been after him, and after this people to
          the present.
          We are safe in retreating; and here is the best retreat that we
          have ever found, right in these mountain fastnesses. But does
          persecution cease now we are here? No, sir. If it did it would be
          jeopardising what has been spoken. What is this for? and how is
          it we are so safe? It is because the Holy Spirit of God aids us
          and sanctifies us, and it consecrates and devotes us to his
          service, and that is the safety of his people. I tell you now,
          this is a good place; but without the sanctifying power of the
          Holy Spirit to amalgamate the Saints and make them of one heart
          and one mind, could they live here? No, they could not. But by
          living their religion, they can live here or anywhere else where
          the Lord has a mind to put them. It is the conduct of the people
          that must determine this.
          Although these mountains are good and like the ramparts of some
          other countries--of Switzerland and of Scotland--yes, take away
          the union that exists in the midst of this people, and then how
          would it be?
          We have many advantages here, and yet God has seen fit to
          manifest and reveal the necessity of union, and of this people
          being of one heart and one mind. He has located us here in these
          mountains to give us an opportunity of taking advantage of these
          blessings which we enjoy, that we might receive benefits from the
          advantages of these high mountains.
          Are we safe? We are, so long as we are united and keep the
          commandment of God. But, brethren and sisters, this must be our
          strength. Our trust must be in the Lord. No one can understand
          for another, but it is each for himself. I know when I am right,
          but I cannot always tell when you feel right. When all my family
          are filled with the spirit of union and show a becoming deference
          to me as the head, I see there is a good spirit prevailing. Then
          I say all is peace, all is happiness, all is paradise under my
          roof. Then there is no enemy that pervades my house.
          You should know when you are right and when you feel right; that
          is, when there is no jealousy, when there is no animosity within
          us--nothing that is contrary to the spirit of the Gospel. When
          our desires and feelings that are constantly brooding over our
          minds are to do all the good we can--when our desires are to see
          the glory of God, to see the Saints made happy and comfortable,
          then we are right, for that is the spirit that unites the Saint
          together; that is the spirit that makes them one.
          There is a good deal to be done, notwithstanding we have advanced
          considerably. The history of our past experience shows we have
          made great advances and now a period in our history has arrived
          that is more eventful--one that is more absorbing to the Saints
          than any past period of our history. I have no doubt, when we
          view this period in years that are to come, that we shall be able
          to give a brighter account of our progress than we have done in
          any times that are gone by. This will assuredly be the case.
          We never were placed in the position we are now in. We are
          situated here, and our enemies are close by us. There have been
          steps taken by them that place us in a different position to what
          we ever were in before; and who shrinks? I do not, and I do not
          know that anybody else does.
          I praise God and thank him for it, that we are placed in a
          position where we dare to declare the truth to the world and to
          the nation to which we have been connected, and where our
          brethren now have the independence to declare the truths of God
          and say what steps we will take in defence of our wives and
          Whether I die on a scaffold or while preaching the Gospel to the
          wicked through iron grates, yet I should rejoice. I leave the
          result in the hands of God, and pray that he will rule all things
          in a way that will be for the salvation of his Saints and for the
          upbuilding of his kingdom. My heart rejoices and I feel right,
          and that the Lord will overrule all for our good.
          Brethren and sisters, I feel that short sermons are the best, and
          I feel that there is a degree of the power of God among the
          people to such an extent that I have never before realized. What
          is the reason of this? You know for the last year past many have
          turned from their sins, and, I trust, have forsaken them. There
          has been a great change; for where darkness and carelessness
          prevailed, and almost wholly pervaded the minds of the people, I
          perceive there is an increase of faith in the promises of God--an
          increase of interest in the cause and kingdom of God upon the
          earth. Many are laying aside personal interest to sacrifice all
          for the building up of the kingdom of God, and all seem to be
          trying who can be the most successful.
          I rejoice in this, and I say that nothing could be a better
          symptom of the gifts and graces of the Gospel begin in the
          people. I feel that God has blessed this people, even beyond my
          most sanguine expectations, though I always believed that God
          would save us and bring us through. But it is no matter, if it
          takes twenty-five years to do that which might be accomplished in
          one,--it is all right--it is all through faith. If there is faith
          enough in this people to do in one hour what is the ordinary work
          of years, it would be brought about by the simple act of faith.
          If it takes us years to gain that experience which we could learn
          in a day, it is our own fault. The Lord declared to his disciples
          that he had many things to say to them, but they could not bear
          them at that time, for they could not bear all things; therefore
          he had to give them instructions by piecemeal, because they could
          not bear the fulness of the light.
          It is so now. It is but little that the Saints can bear, and I
          want you to bear it in your minds, for every move of the Holy
          Spirit softens the hearts of the people: there is with it an
          accompanying blessing; there is something that warms the
          conscience and makes the spirit tender. The heart should be
          susceptible and pliable to the touch of the Spirit. Do not
          forsake that--do not drive that out of your heart, but make
          yourself more and more acquainted with the Spirit and power of
          God. A man may pass through all the ordinances of the house of
          God, but he must have the impress of the Holy Ghost upon his
          mind, or he cannot receive that fulness of joy and happiness
          which he might have. When the Spirit of God melts the heart, it
          runs through a man's system, and it is like melted ore. But when
          the heart becomes hard, there is no penetrating it. This is a
          serious state to be in.
          I tell you there is the power of God in this Tabernacle, and we
          may feel that we are arrested by the power of God until we should
          be carried out of that door; and then, perhaps, the next moment,
          we lose that feeling and become the natural man again. We should
          strive to get that influence and keep it.
          All our domestic arrangements are to be subservient to that
          Spirit, otherwise we are on the background--we are taking the
          back track, which never should be the case with the Saints. When
          a man gets the power of God and the Spirit of the Lord, he is
          I would not be afraid to warrant everything that I possess upon
          the earth, if this people will be faithful and live so as to
          enjoy the fulness of the Spirit of God, that no enemy can
          successfully invade us.
          We want to be happy. This is our ultimate and eternal
          boon--happiness. You may point me to an individual that is not
          seeking for happiness, but I tell you the ultimate design of each
          and every one is happiness. I tell you a man's mind is
          susceptible of feeling and cannot be satisfied with out
          Well, home is our paradise--home is our heaven. We can make a
          heaven in our own bosom--we can make it at home. I never can be
          joyful or happy without a heaven at home; but when I have it
          there, I feel well, let winds blow high or low--let adversity
          come, or prosperity.
          I do believe that it is the design of the Almighty to bless this
          people with prosperity. But I tell you, brethren, I should be
          afraid of myself, if I had this world's goods. I tell you the
          pathway through adversity is the safest way to heaven. When men
          get prospered, they get lifted up, and then they lose the Spirit
          of God.
          Let us not murmur or repine at poverty. We never shall know the
          contrast, if we drink the bitter cup all the day long; but we
          shall enjoy the blessings.
          I pray God to strengthen you and to arm you with faith and
          patience to endure all you may be called to pass through, with
          elasticity of feeling, and with the gifts and graces of the
          Gospel, that will fill you with light and life--with quickness of
          That you and I may be what we profess to be, is my prayer. God
          bless you, brethren and sisters! Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Lorenzo
          D. Young, December 13, 1857
                         Lorenzo D. Young, December 13, 1857
             Remarks by Bishop Lorenzo D. Young, made in the Tabernacle,
                      Great Salt Lake City, December 13, 1857.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          I have tried to treasure up what I have heard to-day, and pray
          God to give me power to practise righteousness upon the earth. I
          am aware that the people that are denominated Latter-day Saints
          occupy a very conspicuous position before the nation in which we
          dwell, and also in the eyes of the intelligent nations of the
          There is something connected with our holy religion that has
          called forth the attention of the wise and learned of this
          generation. And they have used their talents and their wisdom in
          trying to destroy the vine that has been planted in the earth, or
          the Priesthood that has been revealed in these latter days for
          the benefit of the children of men, that they might be restored
          again into the presence of God their Father.
          It would be superfluous for me to say that the revealed truth of
          God from heaven has not been received by the majority of the
          world in any generation; so it is no new thing under the sun if
          Joseph Smith's mission is rejected by them. The Lord's wisdom is
          not like the wisdom of man, neither are his ways like the ways of
          The priests of the day, who professed to teach the way of Life
          and salvation to the people, looked with contempt upon Joseph
          Smith the Prophet, and sought by every means in their power to
          destroy him and the truth which he brought forth, that the
          kingdom and power of Babylon might, as it has done in days gone
          by, continue to prevail, unchecked by the influence of the
          kingdom of God.
          Beloved Saints, we are now here in the valleys of the mountains,
          far separated from those who have sought and still seek our
          overthrow; and here we have the privilege of coming to meeting to
          hear from the servants of God, and there are none who dare molest
          or endeavour to deprive us of this dearly-bought privilege. This
          is a choice blessing, and one which we all should strive more
          fully to appreciate.
          The false learning and wisdom of the world, concentrated, cannot
          compare with one principle of eternal truth revealed to this
          people through those whom God has sent to lead them. Are we
          worthy of the high and holy calling whereunto we have been
          called? Do we order our lives so before the Lord of Hosts that we
          are worthy of his confidence, worthy to walk in the light of his
          countenance from day to day?
          If we live in such a manner as to receive nourishment from the
          true vine, into which we have been grafted, then we shall have
          power to overcome those sins that so easily beset us. There are a
          great many more things connected with our holy religion besides
          praying morning and evening, fasting, and paying tithing, as did
          the Jews. Our religion comprises the holy order of heaven
          revealed to man in the last days for the final establishment on
          earth of the kingdom of God, which will never be overthrown; but
          it will roll on and increase until the kingdoms of this world
          shall become subject to the law, government, and authority which
          rule in Zion.
          It will not be long before this congregation of adults will pass
          from this stage of action, and their places will be filled by the
          rising generation. I was charmed by a remark which fell from
          brother Kimball this morning. He said, "There are little boys
          here that will live until they have power to bring the dead to
          life." It brought to my mind the great obligation which should
          prompt parents to bring up their children in the way they should
          go. Solomon said, "Train up a child in the way he should go, and
          when he is old he will not depart from it."
          The words of the affectionate parent take deep root in the hearts
          of the tender offspring; and the impressions received in
          childhood remain with them during their lives. I well remember
          hearing the confession of two men that were executed in an
          eastern country a number of years ago. They gave a history of
          their early tuition. One of them regretted that he had not
          adhered to the teachings of his mother; for, if he had, he said,
          he would not have come to the gallows.
          The children of the Latter-day Saints are different from the
          children of the world. We have heard to-day that those that were
          begotten under the order of the Priesthood were endowed with
          greater power, ability, and knowledge than those children born
          among the Gentiles. The spirit in our boys is uncontrollable but
          by the holy Priesthood. Why? Because the masterspirit is in them,
          and it grows up with them; and when our children become men and
          women, they will voluntarily adhere to the principles of eternal
          truth. They have not been under the influence of a sectarian
          education, and have not this to contend with as have their
          fathers. They are brought up as the children of the Most High,
          and they will walk in the path of their fathers and in the
          precepts of their mothers, and will magnify their high calling to
          a greater extent, and be far more exalted than them in the eyes
          of Heaven.
          Will the daughters of Zion follow in the footsteps of their
          mothers? In some things I hope they may; in other things I hope
          they will not. When we attend to and fully live up to what the
          Lord has revealed unto us through the Prophet Joseph, as also
          those instructions which we continually receive from the servants
          of God, we shall be more like angels or heavenly beings. Our
          houses will be governed according to the order of God revealed to
          man. Just walk into President Young's house, and tell him you
          desire to walk through his house to see the order of it. Then
          walk through President Kimball's--I think neither of them will
          deny you the privilege--and see if there is not an order of
          things prevailing there that extends beyond your narrow
          I well recollect hearing the Prophet Joseph instruct the people,
          about twenty years ago, to make their own clothing, and to let
          the decoration of their bodies be the workmanship of their own
          hands. That revelation has not been much thought of by many. I
          referred to it in the old Bowery, and there was such a rebutting
          feeling in the spirit of the people, that it was with the
          greatest difficulty I could say anything.
          It has been said, "Why does not President Young go to work and
          clothe his family with homespun, and set the example? Why does
          not President Kimball? Whey did not Presidents Richards and Grant
          and others do it. People with common sense can see the reason
          why. There is not a man in the Territory of Utah that can compete
          with them in this thing. They have done it all the day long, as
          far as their calling would admit. Are they still doing it? Yes.
          I see men and women before me clothed in fine apparel. I am glad
          of it; but I should feel far better to see them clad in cloth of
          domestic manufacture--that is, in homespun.
          The gold and silver that found its way here has gone. This
          community were not sufficiently wise to buy those article only
          which were necessary to make them and their posterity
          comfortable, and lay a foundation to make themselves independent;
          but they squandered their means in purchasing fine goods to
          gratify the fancy of women, and their money passed swiftly
          through their hands to the merchants, who have taken it along
          with them to the States; and I am glad of it, because this people
          are destined to learn a lesson by it that they could not
          otherwise learn.
          The gold is gone; the sheep and flax in sufficient numbers and
          quantity are not here, and our enemies are between us and the
          states. The prospect now is fair for our obeying the commandments
          of God that he have through brother Joseph with respect to
          manufacturing our own clothing and the adorning of our own
          bodies. The people will profit by the lesson.
          If we, as a people, will follow out the teaching the Lord has
          revealed to us through his servants, he will preserve us and be
          our great Benefactor in days to come as in days gone by, and we
          shall not be allowed to suffer more than we can bear.
          Let me say to all of you, just take care of what you have got and
          preserve it. I see the sisters passing along the streets, even in
          muddy weather, with their dresses of silk and satin dragging in
          the mud. They could cut off from four to six inches from the
          skirt, and make their children a dress of what they wear out and
          waste on the ground; and if they have no earthly use for it
          themselves, perhaps some of their neighbours would be glad of if.
          It does not become me, however, to correct the errors of the
          people here. Brother Kimball says it is the Bishop's office. I
          thank him for this information, for I did not know it before. If
          you have good clothes, do not drag them in the mud, but save
          everything you have against a stormy day. Let this people make
          their own clothes and take care of what the Lord has put into our
          Instead of only eight thousand sheep, there ought to have been
          eight millions. If all men had used the exertion that some few
          have, there would have been sheep enough to have clothed this
          whole people from year to year, asking no odds of Uncle Sam or
          anybody else. Flax can be grown here. I have not raised any flax,
          but I expect to have some spun and wove.
          Were it not for home manufactures, I should expect to go without
          clothing. President Kimball says there are now about three
          hundred bushels of flax-seed in the Tithing Store.
          Prepare yourselves also to raise sugar-cane, and from that your
          sweetening, or make up your minds to go without; and if you have
          got a leaky roof, try to get it fixed.
          If our enemies,--I do not mean those few out yonder--a swarm of
          longbilled mosquitoes could eat them up at a supper spell,--I
          mean the whole United States and the whole world,--if they should
          come upon us, they cannot prevail, for they are fighting against
          the kingdom of God and warring against the Saints of the Most
          High. The combined nations of the earth will try to destroy the
          man-child and obliterate the truth from the earth; but as the
          Lord of Hosts lives, they cannot do it; and the reason is because
          the Almighty stands at the helm, and he will guide the old ship
          Zion in a safe course, and all the powers of earth and hell
          cannot stop her progress.
          May God bless you all. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Isaac
          Morley, November 8, 1857
                           Isaac Morley, November 8, 1857
             Remarks by Patriarch Isaac Morley, made in the Tabernacle,
               Great Salt Lake City, Sunday Morning, November 8, 1857.
                               Reported by J. V. Long.
          I am in hopes that what I do say will be dictated by the right
          guide, as brother Heber says. I do not wish for any other. It is
          difficult for me to communicate my ideas, though I do not make
          this statement because I wish to apologize or to excuse myself
          from any duty.
          I thing I realize with you, brethren, the situation that we are
          in and the circumstances that surround us. Every reflecting mind
          will rest his thoughts and attention upon our present situation;
          and if we have in us the light of the Holy Ghost, we shall
          believe it is all right. This is my conclusion, and I presume it
          is the conclusion of most of you.
          If we, as individuals, are right before God, all will go well
          with us and the Lord will prosper us. I do not think that the
          reform that we have undertaken and that is undertaken with this
          community is done with. I find that it becomes me to concentrate
          my mind daily and hourly upon the grand things that lie before
          As to the enemy that is come up to destroy or curtail us in any
          of our blessings, I care but little about them. It makes me think
          of the past, when my mother used to have a rod over the
          mantelpiece for me to look at. I think we have got one that we
          can look at, and it is where it can be used; and probably if it
          is used, it will be used to our advantage.
          If we can prepare our hearts and our lives, we need not fear
          anything about our enemies. The greatest fear is that I shall not
          sustain and carry out correct principles in my own bosom. I
          believe that our grand object it to have all things right within.
          If we do this, we shall do well.
          We are taught in one place to "pray without ceasing," and
          watching is as necessary as prayer. I am of the opinion that we
          can correct our thoughts so far as to know and understand what
          our motives are and what our affections are placed upon. If our
          minds are wandering to the nations of the earth, what will it
          benefit us? The grand place for our operations to begin is in our
          bosoms, and to see that our minds and bodies are influenced by
          those principles that pertain to light, life, and immortality.
          There are great attainments in reserve for the faithful of this
          people. I believe that we may enjoy even more peace and
          satisfaction than we do now, which may be obtained by prayer and
          watchfulness. We should reflect upon the covenants and
          obligations that we have made unto God and before our brethren.
          There are many keys in those holy covenants whereby we can derive
          Obedience is the grand key whereby this people are to be exalted;
          and I sincerely believe that the Presidency are comforted by the
          obedience that is rendered to their requirements.
          It is the mind that makes the man; and if that mind is centred
          upon correct objects--if it cultivates and cherishes them, that
          mind is improving. There is not time nor circumstances through
          which we may be passing but there is opportunity for improvement.
          I learn this daily. And there are opportunities for our
          advancement in the principles of exaltation.
          I believe that reformation and union can be carried to a greater
          extent than they have been. If there is a love for the truth in
          the people, it will be manifest in true plainness and true
          honesty: our yea will be yea, and our nay will be nay. The
          Scriptures say, "Whatsoever cometh more than this is evil;" but
          true plainness and true honesty is what we want.
          If we are not advancing in light, we are either standing still or
          going backward. The great principles that we are to be governed
          by dwell in simplicity; they are easy to be understood by any and
          all who will apply themselves.
          The condescension of Heaven is great: there can be no greater
          condescension than is manifested to us. We have attained our
          heirship. We know there is such a principle as well as we know
          there is a God.
          Baptism for remission of sins and the laying on of hands for the
          gift of the Holy Ghost are as simple as anything can be. All the
          great fundamental principles of salvation are simple. We can
          comprehend and understand them--we can increase and grow by the
          power of them.
          In adding to our faith, it is necessary that we should add virtue
          first, then knowledge; and these we should cultivate daily and
          Brethren, I intend, as far as I have power, to instruct by
          example. Without it, I would give very little for all the
          precepts that are or can be set forth in a family or abroad among
          the people.
          May God bless you, is my prayer, in the name of the Lord Jesus.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Daniel
          Spencer, October 11, 1857
                          Daniel Spencer, October 11, 1857
                             BLESSINGS OF OBEDIENCE, ETC.
            Remarks by President Daniel Spencer, made in the Tabernacle,
               Great Salt Lake City, Sunday Morning, October 11, 1857.
                               Reported by J. V. Long.
          I arise to bear my testimony to the truth of what Elder Lyman has
          said this morning. I feel that it has been good to listen to him.
          The principles of which he has spoken are the foundation of our
          happiness; and unless we build upon what he has been speaking of,
          we may seek to all eternity, and not obtain happiness.
          All truth comes from God, and he makes it known through his
          servants; and this is almost invariably in advance of our
          knowledge. In the commencement of our connection with the Church,
          in our baptism, we are told that we should receive the gifts and
          blessings of the Gospel, if faithful. We did not receive positive
          proof of it: but as we advanced, we realize through obedience,
          the truth of what was promised us.
          Brother Amasa has instructed us to be faithful--to have
          confidence in God, and that in his own way he will benefit us and
          establish peace. If we love God, all things will work together
          for our good.
          If we love God, we love the truth for all truth is from God. We
          have got to have this confidence in the Lord and show that we
          love all truth; and if our faith is established upon that and
          upon the principle upon which he reveals it to us, then we know
          that all things will be overruled for our good, our faith, and
          our happiness, as we have been told to-day.
          Now, we have knowledge that it is best for us to labour and
          obtain clothing to keep ourselves warm for the winter. We have
          been taught this by our parents. We know that it is best to live
          by industry. The Indians do not know this,--at least but very few
          of them do, and none of them knew it when we first came here:
          they did not understand that it was best to labour to make
          themselves comfortable; but now they are learning it: they are
          beginning to learn that it is best to make some little sacrifice
          to get clothing and food: and they are improving in this day by
          Now, the Gentiles have a knowledge that it is best to labour for
          clothing, for food, and to make preparation for winter, and so
          on; but when we speak of the knowledge of God, and that it is
          best to do this or that because the whisperings of the Spirit say
          so and so,--when it comes to the servants of God and the things
          of his kingdom, the Gentiles do not know so much as the Indians
          do; hence they act in accordance with their views and knowledge,
          and hence they are deprived of may blessings.
          We have derived many blessings from rendering obedience to those
          things that were taught us when we first came into the Church;
          and those who do not learn these things do not have our
          Well, now, as Elder Lyman has remarked, if we love the truth
          better than error, and have confidence in the Lord that he has
          established his kingdom, and that he will reveal his will, we are
          happy, and we shall abide in the truth, precisely as he has told
          us. If we have that love for the truth, we shall discard all evil
          from our families--we shall discard strife and every malignant
          feeling that is contrary to truth.
          God has not recommended any mode of procedure that will produce
          discord or unpleasantness in our homes; hence we had better leave
          off that which will offend God. A man that harbours a malignant,
          unruly spirit does not love the truth; and these are the things
          which cause men to apostatize. They say, "I will have a little
          gratification upon a principle that I know is wrong." Well, this
          is the foundation of apostacy; it is the method by which the
          people sacrifice that which would bring continual peace: they
          apostatize by sacrificing that which they know to be right,--not
          that which they do not know, but that which they do know; and
          that which they know it truth. Then the Spirit of the Lord
          withdraws from them, and they have no relish for the truth,
          because they have despised and put away his counsel; they have
          not respected his counsels.
          I mention these little things because they come under our
          observation every day. We have counsel from Bishops, Teachers,
          and Presidents. This is the method through which we receive
          counsel, and we must respect the counsel that come from all these
          authorities. If we respect God and his servants, he will respect
          us; but if we do not respect him, he will not respect us, because
          we have not respect for the truth nor for God. But if we have a
          respect for God and love his teachings and his servants, then we
          shall love the truth; our minds are open because we are searching
          for truth; we love it and cherish it; it is visible in our
          transactions in life. Well, then, it is our meat and our drink;
          it is our food constantly; and we feel to do everything to
          benefit mankind--to make people happy.
          I have been very much interested myself, and I know that the
          remarks made to-day by Elder Lyman are just what we want.
          Whatever we have passed through and whatever we may in future
          pass through, we shall say, if we endure to the end, that we know
          God has overruled all things for our good. We know now that all
          will be for our good, and we are made happy in the enjoyment of
          the knowledge that God will overrule everything for our profit
          and good; and upon no other principle will it be happiness to us.
          It is not to be presumed that we re going to be happy and possess
          all fulness of knowledge at once; but events will be continually
          and gradually developed that will show us that God will bring to
          pass nothing but what will be for our good and for our happiness.
          My prayer is that we may have power with God--that we may have
          confidence that God will do all for our good; and let us know
          that he accepts our actions, and let us be ready to do whatever
          is required of us, nothing doubting, and I know that peace will
          be the result.
          I want to make a few observations in relation to the handling of
          our guns. There have been three individuals killed through
          carelessness. Almost every day I hear guns fired off, and
          oftentimes they go off in a direction not intended. Now, be
          cautious, and let not any accident of this kind take place in
          this city. Be careful where you discharge your guns, for our
          lives are precious. Many have now been called to handle guns that
          never have been used to it. Let such put on a double guard over
          themselves, and know that they must not use firearms carelessly.
          The late news from the army is favourable, as it has hitherto
          been. I presume that it is well understood; therefore, I will not
          repeat it.
          Let us live so as to continually secure the favour of God, and I
          know that we shall have constant peace and joy. This is my
          prayer, in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Elias
          Smith, August 2, 1857
                             Elias Smith, August 2, 1857
                  Remarks by Elder Elias Smith, made in the Bowery,
                Great Salt Lake City, Sunday Morning, August 2, 1857.
                               Reported by J. V. Long.
          My brethren and sisters,--Very unexpectedly I appear before you
          this morning. Perhaps it might be well enough for me to confess
          my sins before you, to begin with.
          Before I get through, I presume, with the few remarks that I may
          make to you, you will learn that I am not much of a public
          speaker upon any subject whatever. I have frequently of late,
          received visits from brother Kimball, and he has intimated that I
          might be called upon to speak before you. This morning I went to
          the Office for the purpose of writing a letter to a sister that I
          have not written to for several years. Brother Stout and brother
          Hiatt came in, and we spent some time chatting. Brother Kimball
          then came in, and I thought if I could get away from him I should
          be glad,--not that I wanted to shun his company, but I knew
          pretty well his business. When on the way here, I thought that I
          had escaped his notice; but his eye was a little too keen for me.
          I have often thought that if I were calculated to do any good, it
          was in another line rather than preaching; for I would rather do
          anything else. If anything else is required of me, I feel that I
          can go and do it; but when called upon to speak, I always have
          felt a diffidence. I know that I cannot stand up before this
          congregation and teach anything. and I shall not presume to do
          it; but inasmuch as I have been called to address you, I will
          endeavour to do so a few moments.
          It is true that I have been in the Church a long time, and I have
          been with the Saints in all the scenes of persecution and trial
          from that time to this, except that I had not the privilege of
          being with the pioneers who came to this Territory. Circumstances
          so ordered things that I could not share with those men who came
          and sought out this country the toils of that memorable journey.
          Aside from that, I believe that I have been with them in all the
          scenes that they have passed through, and I have striven to do
          all that I could for the cause, though I have never tried to make
          myself conspicuous, but have endeavoured to do what I was told by
          those over me; and that will be the case with me to-day; and
          then, after I have spoken to you, I shall go and do something
               Although I though I was somebody, before I heard
          "Mormonism," yet I can say in truth that is has made me all that
          I am. I know that I have not lived up to all the privileges that
          have been afforded me, and I know that I have not been as
          thorough as I ought to have been in many things; but when I have
          reflected, I have come to the conclusion that I would be more
          persevering in the future,--though, when anything has been given
          me to do, I have generally gone and done it.
          When "Mormonism" found me, I was surrounded and enveloped with
          the things of this world. My father had a name among a religious
          society, and I frequently went to meeting with him; but when I
          did not choose to go where he went, I went somewhere else. I
          never adhered to any religious principles, but believe in living
          a strictly moral life; but I did not believe in anything scarcely
          that was taught by the religious parties around me. If, however,
          a man wished to become popular in the world, it was necessary in
          that part of the country for him to belong to some religious
          body; for it was hard to rise in the sphere of respectability
          without it. Notwithstanding this, I thought, if I could not be
          raised in the world without having a form of religion, I never
          would rise. But I believed that I could accomplish it without
          that, and I was in a fair way for it, as I thought, when
          "Mormonism" first came along. Under these circumstances, you will
          readily believe that I did not give way to it immediately, and I
          have been sorry for it many times. Instead of yielding to it, I
          strove to throw it off; but at length, being convinced that it
          was true, I said farewell to my popularity, threw off the things
          of the world, and have tried to be a "Mormon" from that time to
          this; but that I have not lived up to all the privileges I ought
          to have done, I freely acknowledge.
          I am glad that I am with you to day, although I cannot say that I
          feel free to speak to you. I realize my imperfections and my
          foibles, and that I am in the presence of those who have taught
          you all the principles that you know, and who have also taught me
          all that I know; and therefore, if I should attempt to teach
          anything, it would only be reiterating those things that you have
          I feel to rejoice every day of my life that I live with the
          Saints in the valleys of the mountains, while war rages and
          rumours of war are heard all over the earth. I rejoice that I
          have the privilege of dwelling with the Saints in peace and
          safety, for I feel that we are in safety; and if we live our
          religion and obey the counsel and advice of those set over us, we
          shall continue to dwell here in peace, and nothing will molest
          The United States may send all the armies they please--I have
          that faith and confidence in the work of the Lord that I feel
          assured, if we carry out those principles and the advice of those
          set to lead us, all will be well with us, and our enemies will
          have no power over us whatever.
          The other evening, when the brethren arrived from the States,
          bringing the news that there was to be not more mail, most of you
          were up in the kanyon. I stayed at home to wait for the arrival
          of the mail, for I thought it would be better for me to wait for
          it than for it to arrive and have to lie in the office two or
          three days without being opened and prepared for delivery. I
          think Thursday, the 23rd, was one of the longest days I had ever
          seen. I tried to do something to pass away the time. I went to
          the Tithing Office and spent a little time with the brethren
          there; but I could not feel to settle down to anything. In the
          evening, brother Smoot and the other brethren came in and said
          that Uncle Sam had taken the mail away from us, and then he had
          ordered several thousand troops to this Territory. I felt
          perfectly calm when I heard the news, and went home and slept
          soundly, and I have slept well ever since.
          It is true I feel somewhat annoyed and not a little vexed at the
          occurrence and at the treatment we have received from the Post
          Office Department in relation to the mail, to think that, after
          so much had been expended to get it fairly into operation and
          have it carried punctually, it should be taken from us. But as to
          their conduct in this respect awing us into subjection, I feel as
          though it never would be done. [Voices: "Amen"]
          I am aware that the prophecies are fulfilling, and that we shall
          soon see scenes of war and commotion, and may be brought to
          collision with the United States; but as to their having power to
          destroy our leaders as they wish, I do not believe they ever
          I have had a desire to live ever since I was a lad. I have always
          felt a desire to live to be an old man, and I yet have that
          desire. In all the scenes that I have passed through, I have
          never wished to die, but have desired to live and see Israel
          triumph over all her enemies.
          A brother was speaking to me yesterday about certain places in
          Missouri, and he said, You remember such and such places. I
          replied, I never was there, but I expect to go. [Voices: "Amen."]
          I started from Liberty once and expected to see those hills and
          plains which the brother alluded to yesterday. I started with
          brother Markham and brother William Burton, who died in England;
          but circumstances prevented our accomplishing the journey. I
          still expect to go there and see Israel victorious over all her
          enemies, and that the measure they have sought to measure out to
          us we shall have the privilege of measuring to them.
          I have seen many dark days; and when I have seen and heard men,
          who have been in the Church eighteen or twenty years, say that
          they have had no trials, I have felt in my hear that they either
          lied, or that they had not lived their religion. If I was to say
          that I never had any trials, it would not be true; and if I was
          to say that I ever once desired to back out, that would be
          equally untrue. As I said before, in my early days I tried to
          lift myself up by my own ingenuity. All that I acquired I wished
          to do by my own skill. If it was not natural to me, I acquired
          and had a stiff-headed disposition and that has been hard for me
          to overcome, and have hardly got over it yet; but when such
          things come along as try me, and I overcome them, I then feel
          I hope to overcome all those imperfections by labouring
          diligently to that end. I came here in 1851, and I believe I have
          made some progress since towards overcoming my weaknesses in this
          Circumstances were such, when I left Nauvoo, that I could not
          come through with the Saints: my father and mother were taken
          sick by the way. My mother died in October, 1846, and my father
          was never able after to come here, except upon a litter. He died
          in 1848, and I soon after began to prepare to come west. I took
          up my effects and came here in 1851, and I came determined to be
          free from that independent disposition that I had had to contend
          with, as much as possible.
          I strove for this in crossing the Plains. The brethren frequently
          asked me what I was going to do when I got there. I told them
          that I did not know--that I had not thought about it. But no
          difference with me what I did; anything that presented itself I
          intended to do. I have been called upon since to do many things
          that were not agreeable to me in their nature: in other words, I
          have had a good deal of dirty work to do; but I have endeavoured
          to do it and keep my hands clean; and if in any of those things I
          have not done this, then I have not done what I have tried to do.
          Be that as it may, it is my desire to live with you in prosperity
          or adversity, let what may come. But I certainly do not expect,
          if we live our religion, that our enemies will have power over
          us, although I am well aware that they will endeavour to do us
          all the injury they can.
          I have been aware that they have had a design in relation to us
          for some time, from the fact that all their movements have been
          carefully hid from us. When we have received their papers, none
          have had any allusion to their military movements in this
          direction, neither have their advertisements in relation to their
          transportation of freight to this Territory ever reached us; and,
          to prevent us still further from knowing anything of their
          doings, they have withheld the mail, and that too without raising
          any legal objections. They did not even avail themselves of the
          privilege always reserved in agreements with mail contractors.
          But the fact of the case is, they seek our overthrow; and if any
          person here do not think so, they are mistaken.
          If they could destroy President Young, President Kimball, and
          President Wells, and the leading authorities of this Church, they
          would be pleased; but they cannot do that. If we do not live our
          religion, I expect we shall be scourged; and for my own part, I
          feel perfectly free in revelation to these things; and whether I
          live or die, it is all the same to me, although I expect to live
          to be an old man, and to go back with the Saints to the land of
          Jackson County. [President B. Young: "God grant it."]
          Brethren, I do not feel like prolonging my remarks. I pray that
          God will bless his Saints, and that those who have no desire to
          remain with us may go away. I know, if we keep the commandments
          of God, we shall obtain his blessings; and I have learned from
          the history of the past that has come down to us, that those who
          have not done so he has chastened. If we keep his commandments,
          we shall be delivered out of the hands of our enemies and be
          saved in his kingdom.
          Brethren, may God bless you and enable you to be faithful in all
          things, is my prayer, in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Lorenzo
          D. Young, October 25, 1857
                         Lorenzo D. Young, October 25, 1857
                        PEOPLE--FULFILMENT OF PROPHECY, ETC.
              A Discourse by Bishop Lorenzo D. Young, delivered in the
                       Great Salt Lake City, October 25, 1857.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          I can truly say that I feel like a little child in relation to
          the things pertaining to the kingdom of God, which are wisdom,
          knowledge, and righteousness revealed to man.
          I have been comforted while hearing by brother speak. His words
          have been truthful. His admonition has bee good to the Saints,
          and his exhortation has been such as we should all reduce to
          practice in our future lives.
          When I stand before the Saints, I can only feel to thank the Lord
          and bless the name of Israel's God: why? Because he has led his
          people in the way they should go for their salvation. While
          contemplating upon the scenes the Latter-day Saints have past
          through, and those through which the Saints in former ages have
          passed, I discover that there is a striking resemblance between
          the two. Indeed, they are of one family; they have embraced the
          same principles and are trying to carry out the doctrines taught
          and practised by the Prophets and by Jesus Christ our Redeemer
          and elder Brother, when he said, "The kingdom of heaven is like
          seed cast into the ground, and some of it took root, but long
          since has the Master taken his journey into a far country, and
          the vineyard has been let out to husbandmen;" and thank God that
          we live in the time of harvest, because I always find the time of
          harvest more joyful than the seed time.
          There is a great harvest to be performed, and the Elders of
          Israel have been engaged in the harvest for many years past, and
          some of the wheat has been gathered out and placed in the garner
          of the Lord.
          I have contemplated, while sitting here this morning, as to what
          would have been the condition of the Latter-day Saints, supposing
          we had been let alone in Kirtland. Every meditating mind can
          contemplate at a glance the situation this people would have been
          in to-day.
          Supposing we had been left to ourselves in the pleasant groves of
          Missouri, which we shall, thank heaven's King, by-and-by occupy,
          with none to disturb us; but the time has not come yet;--I say,
          had we been permitted to stay there, could the Lord have
          fulfilled the words of the Prophets, which were spoken by the
          inspiration of the Holy Spirit, concerning this people in the
          latter day? Verily no.
          Suppose we had been permitted to remain in the city of Nauvoo,
          Illinois, could the words of the Prophets have been fulfilled
          concerning this people in our day? No. But the Lord, by his
          unseen hand and outstretched arm, and by his wisdom, which is
          beyond the comprehension of finite beings, led his people to this
          place prepared and reserved by him as chambers of safety for his
          Saints, in fulfilment of the words of all the holy prophets since
          the world began.
               You that are acquainted with the words of the Prophets can
          remember that the Lord has promised through them, that he would
          hide his people in the last days while his wrath and indignation
          should pass through the wicked nations of the earth.
          What is the testimony of the Elders of Israel in relation to the
          situation and circumstances of the nations of the earth, where
          they have travelled for the last few years? Does it not portray
          to us the most horrible scene of suffering? Abominations of the
          lowest caste are practised among those nations that bear the fair
          title of Christian nations, and they have sunk the deepest of all
          others in degradation, wickedness, and wretchedness.
          Is the Lord vexing the nations? Yes; and there is no place where
          the Lord could better secure his people than in these valleys,
          behind these towering bulwarks which his enemies cannot throw
          down. Powder and ball cannot move them. Behind these the Lord has
          securely planted his little flock, where he has nourished and
          cherished it by Prophets and Apostles, and watered it with the
          dews of heaven, strengthening it with manna--the bread of heaven,
          inspiring the hearts of his servants to give unto it that
          nourishment that is necessary to make it grow and prosper, until
          its branches run over the wall and Zion becomes terrible to her
          enemies when they shall come up to war against her.
          The Prophets have truly spoken of this day and looked upon it
          with admiration. When I call to mind that I have the honour of
          being a member of that Church which the Lord Almighty has planted
          in the latter day, it fills my heart with sensations of joy and
          gladness which language fails to express or communicate.
          My brother said his heart leaped with joy on the 24th of July,
          when the declaration of independence was made. My meditations and
          sensations were, no doubt, something like those of the fathers
          who fought for the liberty and independence we ought now to
          enjoy. They were glad of the dawning privilege of worshipping God
          in their own way, and of worshipping that God they chose to
          worship, whether it was the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, or
          none at all.
          Did they not have to fight for that liberty? Yes. Should any of
          the sons of Zion fall in the contest for similar privileges in
          our day, thank heaven's King, they will have the privilege and
          honour of sealing their testimony with their blood, and of
          becoming martyrs in the latter day to Heaven's cause. Will their
          mothers, fathers, brothers, and sisters have any reason to mourn
          because their son or brother has died a martyr to Heaven's cause?
          No; for they will wear a martyr's crown, which makes it more
          desirable for us to go out in the defence of Heaven's cause, and
          lose our lives to establish this kingdom and help to sustain it
          upon the earth, or to dwindle away in sickness, hunger, and
          thirst, brought upon us from the ungodly conduct of our enemies.
          Have not a great many already fallen victims to their cruelty?
          Yes. Have not I seen many women and children consigned to the
          silent grave because of their cruelty? I have; and all because we
          are the friends of God. Were we standing in open defiance of the
          mandates of king Immanuel, would they be our enemies? No. They
          are the enemies of Jesus, our elder Brother, who has for a long
          time withdrawn himself, as he said in the parable, when he
          compared the kingdom of heaven to a man who let out his vineyard
          and took a journey into a far country. Jesus has taken his
          journey; but thanks be to heaven's King--to God, our heavenly
          Father, he has said in these last day, "My son, take to yourself
          the kingdom, because it is yours, for Lucifer has borne rule long
          enough on that planet: now, you go to work and revolutionize that
          planet, and purify and sanctify it from the wickedness and
          abominations that exist upon it, that it may be prepared and
          brought back to my presence."
          This is the work in which we are now engaged. If there should be
          a man or woman of the character that has been spoken of this
          morning, that wishes to go away from this people, I wish they
          would go. Every honest Latter-day Saint has felt and prayed, and
          his prayer has been in the morning, at noon, in the evening, and
          at midnight, that God would sweep his vineyard and purify it and
          prune it of all the dead branches, that they may be burned and
          blown away by the wind, like the chaff of the summer
          Now, was it not the prayer of every faithful Saint that God would
          set his furnace in Zion and burn out the chaff and the branches
          which are withered up and dried, that nothing but the bearing
          branches might be left--the pure in heart,--that there might be
          not jarring strings, no back-bitings, slander, stealing, or any
          evil thing among the Saints of God who dwell in Zion? We have
          seen such things here to a certain extent. I feel glad in my
          heart, and feel as though I could jump up and cry "Hallelujah!"
          and "Glory!" like a Methodist, because the kingdom of God is set
          up and given to the Saints of the Most High. The yoke of
          oppression is broken off, and independence is give to us as far
          as is now necessary and required, that the kingdom of God may
          advance on the earth. Why not rejoice and be glad?
          There are some appendages to all this, and one little item drops
          into my mind now--one of the simplest things in the world--that
          is, for the sisters, if they have not the privilege of knitting
          mittens and stockings, to go to work and make pieces of
          patchwork, or anything that will keep the brethren warm that are
          out in the mountains. No doubt but we shall see tight times; but
          the Lord will guide his servants, and his kingdom will prosper,
          and every Saint will learn how to appreciate blessings when we
          have them; but there is no occasion for any person to be afraid.
          There have been a great many things prophesied here in the way of
          common conversation. I suppose that a good many of the Saints
          think that when the old Prophets, Jeremiah, Isaiah, and others
          prophesied, they used to get down on a bench and kneel before the
          congregation, or get into a dark closet, where they could speak
          through a knot-hole and have their scribe write it, or perhaps
          have a coffee-sack covered over their heads, and ashes sprinkled
          over that.
          I have heard men prophesy here every Sabbath-day; and in a
          thousand years after to-day, when we read over their prophecies,
          the prophecies spoken by the old Prophets will sink into
          insignificance and will be forgotten. Even as the wonders of the
          last days, in gathering Israel, will throw into the shade of
          forgetfulness the mighty miracles at the Red Sea and in the
          wilderness, so it will be a thousand hence, when we read over the
          prophecies delivered in the year 1857. Why? Because there is a
          great deal more pending now than formerly.
          We now see our brethren called to go into the mountains, and this
          people are expending much to defend the cause of Zion.
          We acknowledge brother Brigham Young as President of this Church:
          we have long acknowledged him as such; also brother Heber C.
          Kimball as his first, and brother Daniel H. Wells as his second
          Counsellor. This Quorum constitutes an embodied power. Where does
          it centre? In the head, and it compares with the triune
          Godhead--the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Are these three men who
          compose the First Presidency one? They are. God has ordained them
          on earth to fulfil his purposes, build up his kingdom, cast down
          Babylon, establish righteousness on the face of all the earth,
          cleanse this planet from corruption, and prepare it for a
          dwellingplace for immortal Saints.
          Has not the Lord embodied all the Priesthood and power of his
          kingdom in the head of the First Quorum of his Church? yes. Where
          should the power of this people be centred? In that personage
          whom God has ordained to lead his people; and, as I have prayed
          myself, not that the Lord would tell me anything particularly
          about the armies of the enemies of God, but make it known to his
          servants Brigham, Heber, and Daniel--that he would give such
          counsel to his servant Brigham as would be necessary for the
          advancement of his kingdom, the destruction of Satan's empire and
          the downfall of Babylon, the spread of the truth, and the
          universal reign of peace on this planet, until the land of Joseph
          is purified and the people of God return to go back with pure
          hearts and contrite spirits to Jackson County, according to the
          words of the servants of God, and build the great Temple of the
          Lord, according to the words of the Prophet Joseph.
          Well, here we are, a free people. We are at liberty to go out in
          the defence of Zion, which we never could do before. The Elders
          have been to the nations, and besought the people to repent and
          leave off their wickedness, to reform, and be baptised, and be
          saved, crying as John the Baptist did, "The kingdom of heaven is
          at hand."
          Had the nations opened the door to the servants of God to freely
          preach among them, before this time the Gospel would have been
          sounded in every ear; and when that is done, Jesus says the end
          shall come. When the olive tree begins to put forth its buds,
          know ye that summer is nigh. The stone that is cut our of the
          mountains without hands has begun to roll, and it will fall on
          the feet, toes, and legs of the image, and crush great Babylon to
          pieces: by its power the nations will be broken.
          I have long prayed that the Lord Almighty would destroy the
          nation that gave me birth, unless the rulers thereof repent. Yes,
          I pray that it may be broken to pieces and become like an old
          vessel that is broken and thrown out to rot and to return to its
          native elements.
          Let us keep the commandments of God, and all will be right. I
          want to say a word in relation to our present position. It
          becometh you and I to be valiant for the truth. All the
          Latter-day Saints have said they are willing to stand up in
          defence of the cause of truth.
          The old Methodists used to say, when they got up in the pulpit to
          speak as I have to-day, that they were ready to defend Zion's
          cause at any risk. They knew but little about Zion and her cause
          and the principles of eternal truth. But they have been revealed
          and taught to us from the stand, Sabbath after Sabbath. No people
          have been blessed with the privileges of the Gospel of the Son of
          God as we have.
          We are free, for Christ has made us free; and the Apostle says,
          "Whom the Son makes free is free indeed." If you are free by the
          blood of the covenant, and have redeemed yourself by its
          requirements, see that you bring no spots upon your garments;
          betray not your trust, but be constant to the truth, and stand a
          witness for it under every circumstance in which you may be
               Will the Lord give strength? yes, and all the power,
          victory, and glory we need. The Lord has courageous men and women
          in the last days; and I believe there is as much courage among
          the women as there is among the men. I want them to have courage
          enough to pray for their husbands and sons, instead of being
          afraid, and not say, when one of the brethren comes into your
          house, "Do you think any of the brethren will be killed?" The
          Lord will dictate that; you need have no anxiety about it.
          Lorenzo Dow told the people, in a certain occasion, "You old
          professors go home and take down your Bibles that have lain on
          the shelf until you can write damnation in the dust that has
          collected on them, and read the old Prophets, and see what the
          Lord did for his people of old." The Lord, at one time, sent
          forth his angel in the time of battle and slew a hundred,
          fourscore-and-four thousand souls in one night. At another time,
          when the people of God went forth to battle, and they were
          afraid, the servant of the Lord stood before them and encouraged
          the, exhorting them with words of consolation, saying, "The Lord
          is at the head of his armies."
          Brethren, trust not altogether in the weapons which are in your
          hands; but when you fight, pray, and let your meditation be unto
          your God; and the Lord will regard you, and answer your prayer,
          and fight your battles, as he did in the days of the Philistines,
          when they defied the armies of Israel. The Lord gives victory to
          his people; but we should all the time be willing to come up to
          the help of the Lord against the might, whenever it is necessary.
          May God bless you, in the name of Jesus Christ! Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Joseph
          Young, July 26, 1857
                             Joseph Young, July 26, 1857
             Remarks by President Joseph Young, delivered in the Bowery,
               Great Salt Lake City, Sunday Afternoon, July 26, 1857.
                               Reported by J. V. Long.
          I have been requested to occupy a few moments before you, my
          brethren, this afternoon, I have a great many reflections in my
          mind, but it is only the few that would be reasonable that I hope
          may have utterance at this time.
          The suggestions which I heard this morning awakened in me, as
          they usually do, feelings which I have for the welfare of the
          kingdom of God, which kingdom, we heard to-day, is already being
          established on the earth,--or we may say that it is established.
          It was said in the days of the Apostle Paul, "Say not in your
          heart, who shall descend into the deep to bring Christ up? or who
          shall ascend into the heavens to bring him down? for the word is
          near thee, even in thy mouth and in thy heart, even the word
          which we preach, which is--If thou wilt confess with thy mouth
          and believe with they heart that God hath raised Christ from the
          dead, thou shalt be saved."
          It was perilling one's life equally as much to acknowledge the
          crucified Nazarene as it is now for the "Mormons" to acknowledge
          Joseph Smith to be a Prophet of God. We will add on to the test a
          little now, and say, If you will confess Jesus Christ to be the
          Redeemer, Joseph Smith to be his Prophet, and Brigham Young his
          successor, and carry out their counsels unto the end, you shall
          be saved.
          Now, I say it was just a perilous to acknowledge Jesus, whom
          almost every one then believed to be an impostor and the refuse
          of all creation, as it now is to acknowledge those men whom I
          have mentioned.
          How is it now? Why, it is popular by the Christian world to
          acknowledge Jesus to be the Saviour. The Catholics all
          acknowledge Jesus to be the Saviour. The doctrine has become
          popular in the world, so much so that nearly the whole world now
          acknowledge that Christ truly was the Saviour, the Redeemer, the
          Son of God; and they believe on him. Will people be persecuted
          for this? No. You may go into all ranks of society in the world,
          and they will receive you, if you are a Christian; but you must
          mind one thing--you must not name "Mormonism"--you must not say
          that Joseph was a man that you believed in; for the moment you do
          this you are in jeopardy.
          I have been many times in places when I did not announce my name,
          but something would tell them I was a "Mormon." I do not know who
          told them, except it was the Devil; but I could hear them say,
          "He is a Mormon." There have been many instances of this kind
          among the Latter-day Saints.
          I prayed, before I heard this Gospel, that I might see the
          kingdom of God; and I could say as Paul did, that I was alive to
          religion, but it was without the law. I was full of religion, but
          I was not very noisy. When the commandment came, "sin revived,
          and I died;" and I learned that I had to be baptised for the
          remission of sins, for I could not deny the truth. I was as
          eligible to the truth as a friction match is to the fire, and I
          could not get by it. I love the truth yet.
          I have heard brother Brigham say, and I endorse the sentiment,
          that every man and every woman who is not willing to lay down his
          or her mortal life for this Gospel cannot be saved. The Lord will
          bring us into a place where we shall be tried whether we are as
          willing to die as we are to live, and I know this is true; and if
          I have not gained that point, I have got to live so as to arrive
          at it on this side of the vail. There is a vail over us at
          present; but to some the vail is becoming thin, but it is not
          There is no greater mark of a man's being in full fellowship with
          God than to see that man quickly yield to the will of God without
          a murmur. This is as good a mark of a Saint as can be given.
          From the commencement of this work there has been plenty to try
          men and to put them to the test. Shall we be mad at our enemies?
          No, not unrighteously--not wickedly mad.
          When I look at the condition of this people, view the work for
          them to do, and the reward the Lord has for them, if faithful,
          and then cast my eyes around and gaze upon the bitterness of our
          enemies, what are my feelings? I can feel as David did concerning
          his enemies, when he went to the sanctuary; "for there," said he,
          "I understood their end."
          Don't you think his envy was then taken from him? Yes, instantly.
          He could feel as Jesus felt in his death-struggles, when the
          Roman soldiers pierced him. He said, "Father, forgive them, for
          they know not what they do."
          Jesus knew the turpitude of the human heart and the wickedness
          that those individuals were capable of; and knowing this, He
          said, "Father forgive them, for they know not what they do."
          I do not know of a better spirit than that which Stephen
          manifested when he said, "Father, lay not this sin to their
          charge." He knew their ignorance as well as their wickedness. He
          saw the heavens opened, and beheld what their end would be.
          Do you think he had any envy towards his murderers then? No, he
          felt very different from this. I have as great an abhorrence to
          their iniquities as any other man; and in case the providence of
          God should call me to stand forth in defence of the truth with
          the sword and the musket, I probably should feel as resolute in
          that case as I should on the side of Stephen, when praying God to
          forgive them.
          My father was a native of America--of a New England State. He was
          a soldier of the revolution, and fought in defence of his
          country--fought for freedom. He maintained this spirit, and he
          died a Latter-day Saint. He had the mortification, however,
          before his death, to be forced to leave his home for the sake of
          his religion; and had he survived a little longer, he would have
          been driven from that land altogether, as we his sons have been,
          and would have been called upon to find his way through the
          trackless desert to these mountains.
          We have come out here and moored and shattered relics that our
          enemies had not destroyed. We wandered--where, we knew not, any
          more than Abraham did, only as we were led by that mysterious
          influence that led the Patriarchs of old. As that influence
          brooded over them, so did it brood over the pioneers that left
          Winter Quarters in the spring of 1847, and crossed the plains,
          the deserts, the streams, and moored themselves in these peaceful
          vales. Since we have been thus driven far from the land of
          civilization--far from the ashes of our patriotic fathers, why
          cannot our persecutors console themselves and say, "They have
          gone," and now the voice of liberty, the voice of philanthropy,
          the voice of generosity would say, "Let the 'Mormons' go and rest
          in peace: they are far away from us; they cannot do us any harm?"
          [President H. C. Kimball. They won't do it, Joseph.]
          As Saints, we have assembled together with our wives and little
          ones, and we have ploughed and sown and raised our own bread, and
          our grain is increasing. God Almighty has touched the soil and
          has brooded over it as over the waters at the beginning. And, lo!
          no sooner have we obtained this land, planted our orchards and
          gardens, than our enemies want to drive us again.
          [President H. C. Kimball. Do you pray for them Joseph?]
          Yes, I pray for them just as the Spirit dictates, which is
          something like the following:--O Lord, bless all our brethren in
          the States and everywhere else throughout the world; and bless
          all that bless them, and curse all our enemies and waste them
          We have the spirit of '76; we are patriots, and we are true to
          our cause. We have to be persecuted and driven. This is what we
          expect, for brother Brigham told the story this morning. This is
          the kingdom that Daniel spoke of.
          Did the world ever persecute the Methodists or the Presbyterians
          as they have the Latter-day Saints? No, nor the Quakers either,
          not in my remembrance.
          This people have been baptised for many of their dead friends;
          and you remember that it is said in the Scriptures that there
          would be a fountain opened for sin and uncleanness; and when this
          day fully comes, the people who are now persecuting the
          Latter-day Saints will begin to know who they are and what they
          I will tell you where my hope of their redemption is. They are
          going to persecute the people of God; they are going to live as
          long as the Lord will let them, and then they will die and go to
          hell, and there suffer the justice of God.
          We look at them, and sometimes feel sorrowful, and sometimes feel
          as if we could deal out justice to them. Our enemies want to kill
          us, and what for? It is for the purpose of cutting off the
          redemption of our dead; but the Lord will hold his hand over us;
          he will preserve our lives, and they will be held sacred in his
          What are we going to do? We are going to build a Temple here; and
          when that Temple is built, we are going to have a font and be
          baptised for our fathers, mothers, and friends who have died in
          generations past, just as far back as we can get at them.
          Where is the hope of our enemies--those who have no knowledge,
          and who have never received the Holy Ghost? The Scriptures say
          that for those who receive it and deny it there is not hope; but
          those who have never received it will die and go into the
          spirit-land, and the Latter-day Saints will seek after them and
          feel after them, if they have not shed innocent blood; and many
          of them will embrace the Gospel.
          I can tell the Latter-day Saints something in relation to our
          enemies; and that is, if we do not do something for them, they
          will lie in hell for ever; and the very people they are now
          persecuting have got to be their saviours, or they will not be
          saved at all.
          I want you to tell them, and tell all the great men of the earth,
          that the Latter-day Saints are to be their redeemers--that they
          have to look to them for their redemption, or there is none for
          them; and they will have to acknowledge that salvation is of
          Israel, and nowhere else.
          The Lord gave his oracles to Jacob and to Israel, but to nobody
          else, and he never will. They are those who hold the Priesthood,
          and they are the only ones who could give redemption to a world.
          I presume that if the people who are our enemies were to come
          here and hear this, or if they should know that we believe this,
          they would, if possible, call us greater fools than ever, and be
          more eager to destroy us than before, simply because they cannot
          comprehend the principles that govern us.
          Brethren and sisters, I have preached you a short sermon, and I
          must say that I feel good to-day. I feel well; and may God bless
          you and bless us all, and enable us to live our religion and
          serve God with full purpose of heart.
          I can endorse one sentiment of brother Smoot, in relation to our
          enemies coming into these valleys. I do not fear them. I feel as
          calm as a summer's evening. The Spirit of peace and quiet is in
          our midst; God is in our midst; and although we do not see him,
          he is here; his messengers are here, and they know our doings,
          and the record thereof they bear to him, and it is good.
          Now, brethren, this is a consolation to us all. Believe in God,
          believe in Jesus, and believe in Joseph his Prophet, and in
          Brigham his successor. And I add, "If you will believe in your
          heart and confess with your mouth that Jesus is the Christ, and
          Joseph was a Prophet, and that Brigham was his successor, you
          shall be saved in the kingdom of God," which I pray, in the name
          of Jesus, may be the case. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / John
          Young, April 8, 1857
                              John Young, April 8, 1857
                Remarks by President John Young, made in the Bowery,
               Great Salt Lake City, Wednesday Morning, April 8, 1857.
                               Reported by J. V. Long.
          I rise before the congregation to make a few remarks, by request
          of my brethren and by the call of the Spirit of my heavenly
          Father which I feel within me.
          I do not expect to say much, nor to detain you long; but I want
          to say a few words, for I feel that my spirit is full of
          testimony this morning; and I tell you what it is, or rather some
          of it. I know that Jesus lives and dwells at the right hand of
          his Father, and that he intercedes for the Saints. I also know
          that Joseph Smith lives; and I can testify that I have felt a
          measure of the spirit of Joseph influencing the minds of the
          brethren during this Conference, and that, too, to a greater
          extent than I ever did in my life.
          I feel a testimony within me that I have a great measure been
          asleep; but through the mercy of God I have waked up, and I feel
          that the Lord has been merciful unto me and unto this people; and
          he verily has met us and called to us when we were afar off; and
          I am thankful for this: I rejoice in his mercy, his long
          suffering, and his goodness.
          I can tell you;, my brethren and sisters, fathers and mothers in
          Israel, and all you that feel that you have got an uncomfortable
          yoke upon you,--it is simply because it is not the yoke of
          Christ; for Jesus said, when he was here, that his yoke was easy
          and his burden light. I know by experience that when I have the
          yoke of Christ upon me, it is light; and what else do I know? I
          know that there are persons who complain that the Gospel yoke
          chafes them; and I want you to understand that such persons have
          not got on the right kind of yoke. [President B. Young: "That is
          verily true, sir."] Now, you that have on such a yoke had better
          pull out the bow-keys, throw off the yoke, and then put one on
          that won't chafe you; for I tell you, as the Lord God Almighty
          lives, it is now or never with the Latter-day Saints.
          The Lord has been merciful unto us, and has called to us by the
          mouth of his servants and his Prophets that are here, and has
          given us an opportunity to renew our covenants and again receive
          the blessings which it is our right and privilege to enjoy.
          Supposing the Lord should take away these Prophets and Apostles
          from amongst us, I want to know how many of this people there are
          who would ever find their way to heaven? There is not a man or
          woman that would ever do it. They would slumber, and sleep, and
          be lost in the darkness and confusion that envelop the world.
          We have revelation upon revelation, precept upon precept, and
          shall I say, here a little and there a little? No. But I will say
          that we have handed out to us here a good deal and there a good
          Here is the fountain of life; and I feel that it is the duty of
          all to improve upon that which they receive; for this is the day
          of salvation, and "How shall we escape, if we neglect so great a
          salvation?" I believe there will be no way of escape for those
          who are slothful and indifferent.
          The other day, when brother Kimball was prophesying relative to
          the wheat, and also about the granaries, and endeavouring to show
          you the necessity of preparing for a time of scarcity, the good
          Spirit whispered to me and said, "What brother Kimball has stated
          is just as true as Joseph's interpretation of Pharaoh's dream;"
          and I verily believe it, and you may depend upon it, brethren and
          sisters, that all those things will come to pass as they have
          been predicted.
          Do you know that we have the Prophets of God among us? There are
          people here, who profess to be Saints, who know but very little
          in relation to the Gospel which they have embraced; but I tell
          you that we are not only blest with a Prophet, but we have
          Prophets in our midst. I know that brother Brigham is a Prophet
          of God, and that he wears the mantle of Joseph; and I can tell
          you also that brother Kimball is a Prophet, and these men are
          filled with the Spirit of the Lord.
          Do you not think that I am glad? Yes, I am, and my soul rejoices
          in the Holy One of Israel, and I feel more happy and a great deal
          better that I ever have done in all the days of my life; and I am
          sensible I know more of the principles of the kingdom of God; and
          I trust I shall learn enough to steer clear of the wickedness of
          men, and in the own due time of the Lord make my escape from this
          ungodly world.
          I realized, while brother Wells was speaking, that the whole
          world was and is Babylon; and I realize that everything outside
          of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is one vast
          Babylon, full of confusion, wickedness, corruption, and
          abominations of the deepest dye. Brother Wells also showed you
          that the great men in the United States are not agreed in any one
          question that comes before them. He also showed that this had
          been the condition of the world for ages.
          I have found, however, that they were perfectly agreed in one
          thing, and that was to destroy the Babe of Bethlehem--the Church
          of Christ; and they are just so yet: they are determined to
          oppose the truth and take the lives of the Prophets of God, and
          their cup of iniquity is almost full. The dragon has poured out
          his mighty flood after this Church, and has tried his best to
          sweep the Saints of God from the earth. But we still live, and we
          intend to live eternally, despite the Devil and all his
          What does Daniel say, speaking of these days--the days in which
          you and I live? He says, "The kingdom shall never be taken away
          nor given to another people." What have the Prophets of God been
          teaching us for years? They have told us, time after time, that
          if they had fifty Saints of the right stripe, they would rather
          have them than to have hundreds and thousands of those who are
          fearful, half-hearted, and eternally grumbling.
          We live in the dispensation of the fulness of times; and all
          other dispensations, as the Prophet of God has said, were only
          preludes to this great and last dispensation; for in this day
          there will be the greatest work performed, the greatest miracles
          wrought, and more of the power of God displayed, and also more of
          the power of Satan, that have ever been witnessed since the world
          I teach the people that Joseph Smith was greater than any other
          Prophet that ever lived, except Jesus Christ. [President B.
          Young: "That is true. How can it be otherwise?"] It can't; and I
          tell you that he is just as active to-day as ever he was, and he
          can do more for this people and for the cause of Zion than he
          could when here.
          In the days of Israel of old, and in all former dispensations,
          there have been many Prophets; but Joseph Smith stands at the
          head of this, which is a dispensation of all dispensations: it
          will comprehend and complete the unfinished work of all former
          I thank my heavenly Father that I live to behold this day. While
          sitting here, I have thought of the first Conference that was
          ever held in this valley. It was nine years ago last October. I
          reached the valley during the sitting of Conference, and some of
          the brethren said, "The conference is sitting; won't you go?" so
          I walked down to where they were holding Conference, and I found
          them by the side of a haystack. There was Father John Smith and a
          little handful of men that might have been covered with a small
          tent, and they were holding the Semi-Annual Conference of the
          Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
          When I contrast the present Conference with the one of which I
          have spoken, I feel to thank God, and my soul magnifies his name
          for his goodness in gathering his people who were then scattered
          by their enemies. Some were upon the Plains, a great many at
          Winter Quarters, some hundreds had perished by the sufferings
          there endured, and few had found their way to this peaceful
          valley, where I can now behold 12,000 persons assembled at a
          Conference meeting. This does my soul good, and I feel that we
          have all great cause to be thankful for the great and marvelous
          blessings conferred upon us.
          Brethren and sisters, let us rejoice in our deliverance from the
          hands of our enemies; let us rejoice in our happy condition and
          in our prosperous circumstance. Let us rejoice, for the kingdom
          is established and never will be given to any other people.
          There is one thing more which I want you to understand, and that
          is, that God is not dependent upon any one man or woman for the
          carrying on and accomplishment of his work. If you have not a
          mind to work for the Lord, let it alone; for he can do just as
          well without you as with you.
          I know there are men under the sound of my voice who are bound by
          the chains of the Devil, and they are and will be controlled by
          them, and you cannot liberate them; and what is the matter? They
          are not of the right blood, and there is nothing right for them:
          they are controlled by a contrary spirit; and they are opposed to
          everything and to everybody but themselves. I have reflected much
          upon this subject, and I have been led to conclude that if we
          could just let into their veins one drop of "Mormonism," it could
          not be got away from them;--I mean when the Gospel is first
          presented to men and women.
          If the right spirit and the good seed be sown on good ground, it
          will bring forth good fruit. Persons who have the truth implanted
          in their hearts, if they are honest, will grow in the knowledge
          of God until they obtain a fulness.
          We read in the Scriptures of a certain class of men who never
          come to the knowledge of the truth, and still they are said to be
          ever learning. I will tell you the reason why they never come to
          the knowledge of the truth: it is because they never loved the
          truth, and consequently they went the wrong way to work. There
          have been such men in every age, and there are just such now, and
          I expect there ever will be until the last and final separation.
          All kinds and characters seem to be needed now, and the great net
          catches all kinds that come to hand, and the fishermen have got
          to separate them; and this is not the work of a moment, but still
          it is an important part of the work of the Lord.
          Brethren, let us work while the day lasts; for I can tell you, as
          the Lord Almighty lives, that we have to act differently from
          what we have done: we must live nearer to the Lord, and not
          suffer ourselves to go to sleep any more. Have you not heard
          brother Brigham say as much as two years ago that if things did
          not go on in a different way from what they had been going, he
          would take his pack on his back and go into the wilderness and
          live his religion? Did not I rejoice last fall when he arose in
          this stand and said that the time had come when the people must
          reform and keep the law of God? It brought to my mind the dream
          which I had respecting the lions, the dogs, and the tigers. It
          was revealed to me in that dream that those men who lead this
          people are the Lions of the Lord; and I know they will overcome
          the dogs.
          There has been a great work done in this Territory: the people
          have reformed, and there are a great number of men in this
          congregation who have been engaged in the work of reformation the
          past winter; and I know that the Spirit of God is with them. I
          also know that a very large majority of the people want to live
          their religion.
          I want to tell you something right here that I have told the
          people in the districts where I have visited. I have told them to
          look at the bait before they swallowed the hook. I tell you, our
          religion is full of common sense; and I know that common sense
          has got to have an important place in the mind of every man and
          woman; and when the Spirit of God operates upon the minds of the
          Saints, it teaches them that which is consistent.
          If you and I keep humble, and keep a childlike spirit, and never
          have anything about us but that kind of an influence, then, if a
          spirit approaches that is not of the Lord, we shall know it. Let
          us control our tongues, for James ways the tongue is an unruly
          member and set all on fire; and I can tell you how you may
          escape. When an unruly spirit approaches you, just hold your
          tongue, and then the fire which is connected with that spirit
          won't hurt you. I tell you, those wicked persons that come to
          annoy and disturb the peace of the Saints of God will have the
          fire of hell in them. [Voice: "And swallow the hook without the
          When I go into the company of a man, I know what kind of a spirit
          he has about him; and you can know it also, if you will carry
          with you the right spirit. The Lord has not given me anything
          that he is not willing for you to have; therefore, strive to have
          in you that Spirit which will enable you to discern the evil from
          the good.
          Let us live our religion and become sanctified before the Lord,
          and remember that we are playing a game now which is not only for
          the time present; but we are now acting a part that will
          establish our character for a very long hereafter: therefore, let
          us so order our lives that we may not look back with regret, when
          we have passed through this probation, that we have not lived
          better and done better.
          I pray God to have mercy upon us and keep us humble, that we may
          perform well our part, and eventually be prepared for the rest
          that is promised to the people of God.
          I cannot express how thankful I feel with I think that I am
          living in the midst of a people where there are Prophets and
          Apostles. Brother Woodruff said that he was glad that he had the
          privilege of living in such a day and amongst such a people; and
          I know there are a great many who feel just as he does, but they
          cannot all speak here and tell of it. I know that I rejoice in
          the privileges of the Gospel, and I wish to encourage my brethren
          and sisters to be faithful, to be diligent and prayerful, and
          always be ready to observe and carry out the counsel of our
          superiors. Let us be united, for in our union consists our
          I do not feel to detain the congregation, but this is my
          testimony and my exhortation to the Saints; and I know that these
          men who lead us are true, faithful, and valiant; and if we follow
          their instructions, we shall be landed safely in the haven of
          I can tell you there is a vast difference between a drove and a
          shepherd: the shepherd leads the flock. This was the way the
          ancient shepherds of Israel did, and it is the way they do now in
          many of the eastern countries: and this is the way for shepherds
          to do with the flock of Christ.
          If you undertake to drive people into heaven, you will have a job
          on hand. I would just as soon undertake to drive an antelope into
          Emigration Kanyon. If we cannot lead them there, we cannot get
          them there at all; and if we should happen to drive a few through
          the gate, we should have to stand there with clubs in order to
          keep them there; for I can assure you that heaven is no place for
          any one who has to be driven in order to get him there.
          It is said that the husbandman is the first to partake of the
          fruit of the garden and the field, and he then administers it to
          others; and I want to know if you think you can administer that
          which you have not got? No, I can assure you, there is a great
          deal in these things for you and I to understand; and if we will
          apply our minds, we shall learn many important lessons. I want to
          know if you ever heard anything from the Prophets of God about
          driving people into heaven. Did they ever teach you a doctrine of
          this kind? No: but it is "Come, come," all the day long.
          In the days of Jesus there was a spirit of this kind, and the
          people could not get any of the "holy water" without paying for
          it; for there were so many picayunish fools around trying to
          carry out their own will, and they would neither go into heaven
          themselves nor allow any one else the privilege; but Jesus came
          alone with the key and opened a door and told the people to come.
          Yes, he cried, "Come, all ye that thirst, and drink of the waters
          of life freely."
          I thank God that we can partake of those waters of life now,
          without money and without price. The Lord has chosen us according
          to his promise; for he has said that he would choose the poor to
          be heirs of his kingdom. When I think of his goodness, I feel to
          say, Hallelujah! Praise the Lord, all ye his Saints! Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Lorenzo
          D. Young, August 16, 1857
                          Lorenzo D. Young, August 16, 1857
                          THE LORD AND HIS PRIESTHOOD, ETC.
               Remarks by Bishop Lorenzo D. Young, made in the Bowery,
              Great Salt Lake City, Sunday Afternoon, August 16, 1857.
                               Reported by J. V. Long.
          It is with peculiar feelings, brethren and sisters, that I arise
          to speak a few moments; and I have as good a right to apologize
          for standing before you as any other man; but I have no apologies
          to make, for the simple reason that I am glad of an opportunity
          to express in public a few of my feelings.
          I have not been with the people called Latter-day Saints as long
          as some of my brethren; but I have been with this people
          twenty-five years, and I have observed closely their meanderings,
          their toils, and their labours. I have seen them in prosperity,
          but it remained only for a short time; and I have seen them in
          adversity, suffering from nakedness and hunger; and last of all,
          I have seen them in these peaceful valleys, with none to harm
          them or make them afraid.
          The ten years past have been a sabbatic year to the Church of
          Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints--a jubilee--a time of rest.
          I will not go into the detail of all the scenes that the
          Latter-day Saints have passed through since the organization of
          this Church on the 6th of April, 1830, which most of you are
          acquainted with, either by experience or by reading the history
          of this people. Suffice it to say that, as a people, we have had
          more peace during our sojourn in these mountains, and we have
          enjoyed ourselves better than ever we did before. I believe, for
          one, that I have in some degree appreciated this day of rest
          which I have enjoyed with you, for I have felt in my spirit that
          it was a blessing to be here; and I believe that all the Saints
          of God have felt this, to a certain extent.
          The Lord showed this place unto his servants, the First
          Presidency of this Church, and the few pioneers who accompanied
          them; and from that day to the present I have involuntarily felt
          like shouting, "Glory! Hallelujah!" Yes, I have felt this, and
          feel it now.
          Is this because I am now more courageous than I was fifteen or
          twenty years ago? No. It is because, with you, I have prayed,
          hundreds of times, that we might enjoy the freedom of the sons of
          God; and I can now behold the faint glimmerings of the dawn of
          that day when the Saints will be free to serve their God and go
          forth untrammelled in the accomplishment of his purposes, in the
          building up of his kingdom, and in the establishment of
          righteousness in the earth.
          Have we not great cause for rejoicing in the prospects before us?
          If we love truth more than error, virtue more than vice, honour
          and integrity more than baseness and degradation, then surely our
          hearts will be glad and our souls will rejoice in the God of our
          salvation, that we live and are engaged in a work which will
          result in the final extinction of wickedness and abomination from
          the earth.
          Within the last twelve months I have seen this people become more
          humble and prayerful, and I have seen them renew their covenants;
          I have seen them make restoration and restitution, and give the
          pledge of their sincerity and integrity; and I have seen the
          Spirit of the Lord poured out upon them. This also gives me
          exceeding joy; it affords me comfort and sweet consolation.
          Do I see this good spirit continue to manifest itself among the
          people? yes, I do. We have wise men to stand at the head to lead
          and guide us. The Lord God of Abraham, by the revelation of his
          Holy Spirit, guides the ship in which we sail. "Is this true?"
          says one. Yes, it is. Does the Lord acknowledge us as his people?
          Yes, he does. How long will he continue to do so? Just so long as
          we continue to be his faithful children--just so long as we
          continue to fulfil our covenants with the Lord our God and to one
          Should any man cherish the spirit of war and the spirit of
          revenge in his bosom, and feel that he wants to go out and fight
          and tear down everything before him? The man who feels this does
          not feel as I do. No: my feelings and the feelings of the people
          of God should always be calm--not irritable.
          Our nerves should not be so unstrung at any time as Sidney
          Rigdon's were, when he picked up his spy-glass to look at General
          Clark's army, and could not hold the glass still enough to see
          anything. We must quiet our nerves and always be cool and
          Is there safety for us, unless we trust in the Lord? No. There is
          not other refuge. He is our only shield and protector. The Lord
          fought the battles of his people in ancient times, and he can do
          it again.
          Is it the people in the Territory of Utah that our enemies are
          and have been contending with? No: they are contending against
          the Lord of Hosts--against the kingdom of God, the Priesthood of
          the Most high. Is it the United States alone that are arrayed
          against the kingdom of God and his Priesthood? No; but it is the
          whole empire of Satan's kingdom--even the whole world.
          We do not go into the United States only; but they are in every
          place on the earth, excepting this, which is Zion, so far as we
          are the pure in heart.
          We have not to go particularly to one place or nation to find
          opposition and the spirit to persecute and destroy this people.
          It is in every place; for this kingdom has to contend with the
          powers of earth and hell. Is the Lord able to bring his cause to
          a successful issue? He is, most assuredly.
          I tell you, brethren and sisters, and I want to impress it on
          your minds, that the stay and the staff of Israel are in the holy
          Priesthood that is vested in the First Presidency and in the body
          of the people. We are not to trust in the arm of flesh, but we
          are to trust on the strength of Israel's God, and live so that
          our conduct will warrant us a confidential application to Him in
          the hour of danger.
          Can we trust in the man whom God has ordained and appointed to
          lead his people? Yes, we can trust in him as God's agent and
          representative, through whom we may know his will concerning us;
          and by faithfully following his instructions, he will lead us in
          the way of everlasting life. If we do this, though we may suffer
          the loss of all that we posses on the earth, and even lay down
          our mortal bodies for the Gospel's sake, God will reward us in
          this world an hundredfold, and in that which is to come he will
          crown us with eternal lives.
          Brethren, let us individually--yea, let every man and woman,
          every Bishop, every Elder, every High Priest, every Deacon, and
          every member of the Church of Jesus Christ stand firm for the
          cause of God in their place and station. Let every man who has a
          family preside over that family as a man of God; and if he has no
          more to preside over than old Henry Sherwood had, when Captain
          Clark asked him who he presided over, and he answered that he
          presided over himself and his wife,--let him do it in love and
          mercy and righteousness before God.
          I was in Kirtland, I was in Far West, and in Davis County; and my
          feelings are just the same to day as they were when brother Hyrum
          Smith announced that brother Joseph was in bonds, and that we
          were all prisoners, and required to give up our arms. I said that
          I would rather die a free man than submit to such tyranny. I am a
          valiant man, you know, when I am a long way from danger.
          May God bless us, and bless all Israel in the tops of the
          mountains and everywhere else, and make them our friends, is my
          prayer, in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Joseph
          Smith, June 2, 1839
                             Joseph Smith, June 2, 1839
             Synopsis of an Address delivered by President Joseph Smith,
                    in Commerce, Illinois, Tuesday, June 2, 1839.
          The Priesthood was first given to Adam. He obtained the First
          Presidency, and held the keys of it from generation to
          generation. He obtained it in the creation, before the world was
          formed, as in Gen. i. 20, 26, 28. He had dominion given him over
          every living creature. He is Michael the Archangel, spoken of in
          the Scriptures. Then to Noah, who is Gabriel: he stands next in
          authority to Adam in the Priesthood. He was called of God to this
          office, and was the Father of all living in his day, and to him
          was given the dominion. These men held keys first on earth, and
          then in heaven.
          The Priesthood is an everlasting principle, and existed with God
          from eternity, and will to eternity, without beginning of days or
          end of years. The keys have to be brought from heaven, whenever
          the Gospel is sent. When they are revealed from heaven, at is by
          Adam's authority. Daniel vii. speaks of the Ancient of Days. He
          means the oldest man--our Father Adam (Michael). He will call his
          children together and hold a council with them to prepare them
          for the coming of the Son of Man. He (Adam) is the Father of the
          human family, and presides over the spirits of all men; and all
          that have had the keys must stand before him in this grand
          council. This may take place before some of us leave this stage
          of action. The Son of Man stands before him, and there is given
          him glory and dominion. Adam delivers up his stewardship to
          Christ--that which was delivered to him as holding the keys of
          the universe, but retains his standing as head of the human
          The spirit of man is not a created being: it existed from
          eternity, and will exist to eternity. Anything created cannot be
          eternal; and earth, water, &c, had their existence in an
          elementary state from eternity. Our Saviour speaks of children
          and says, "Their angels always stand before my Father." The
          Father called all spirits before him at the creation of man, and
          organized them. He (Adam) is the head, and was told to multiply.
          The keys were first given to him, and by him to others. He will
          have to give an account of his stewardship, and they to him.
          The Priesthood is everlasting. The Saviour, Moses, and Elias gave
          the keys to Peter, James, and John, on the mount, when they were
          transfigured before him. The Priesthood is everlasting--without
          beginning of days or end of years--without father, mother, &c. If
          there is no change of ordinances, there is no change of
          Priesthood. Wherever the ordinances of the Gospel are
          administered, there is the Priesthood.
          How have we come at the Priesthood in the last days? It came
          down, down, in regular succession. Peter, James, and John had it
          given to them, and they gave it to others. Christ is the Great
          High Priest; Adam next. Paul speaks of the Church coming to
          innumerable company of angels; to God, the Judge of all--the
          spirits of just men made perfect; to Jesus, the Mediator of the
          new covenant, &c. (Heb. xii, 23.)
          I saw Adam in the valley of Adam-ondi-Ahman. He called together
          his children and blessed them with a patriarchal blessing. The
          Lord appeared in their midst, and he (Adam) blessed them all, and
          foretold what should befall them to the latest generation. (See
          Doc. and Cov., sec. iii., pars. 28, 29.
          This is why Abraham blessed his posterity--he wanted to bring
          them into the presence of God. "They looked for a city," &c.
          Moses sought to bring the children of Israel into the presence of
          God, through the power of the Priesthood, but he could not. In
          the first ages of the world they tried to establish the same
          thing: and there were Eliases raised up who tried to restore
          these very glories, but did not obtain them: but they prophesied
          of a day when this glory would be revealed. Paul spoke of the
          dispensation of the fulness of times, when God would gather
          together all things in one, &c.; and those men to whom these keys
          have been given will have to be there; and they without us cannot
          be made perfect.
          These men are in heaven, but their children are on earth. Their
          bowels yearn over us. God sends down men for this reason. (Matt.
          xiii. 41.) "And the Son of Man shall send forth his angels, &c."
          All these authoritative characters will come down and join hand
          in hand in bringing about this work.
          The kingdom of heaven is like a grain of mustard seed. The
          mustard seed is small, but brings forth a large tree, and the
          fowls are the angels. Thus angels come down, combine together to
          gather their children, and gather them. We cannot be made perfect
          without them, nor they without us. When these things are done,
          the Son of Man will descend--the Ancient of Days sit; we may come
          to an innumerable company of angels--have communion with and
          receive instruction from them. Paul told about Moses'
          proceedings--spoke of the children of Israel being baptized, &c.
          He knew this, and that all the ordinances and blessings were in
          the Church. Paul had these things and we may have the fowl of
          heaven lodge in the branches, &c.
          The horn made war with the Saints and overcame them, &c., until
          the Ancient of Days came; judgment was given to the Saints of the
          Most High from the Ancient of Days; the Time came that the Saints
          possess the kingdom. This not only makes us ministers here, but
          in eternity.
          Salvation cannot come without revelation: it is in vain for any
          one to minister without it. No man is a minister of Jesus Christ
          without being a prophet. No man can be the minister of Jesus
          Christ, except he has the testimony of Jesus, and this is the
          spirit of prophecy. Whenever salvation has been administered, it
          has been by testimony. Men of the present time testify of heaven
          and of hell, and have never seen either; and I will say that no
          man knows these things without this.
          Men profess to prophesy. I will prophesy that the signs of the
          coming of the Son of Man are already commenced. One pestilence
          will desolate after another. We shall soon have war and
          bloodshed. The moon will be turned into blood. I testify of these
          things, and that the coming of the Son of Man is nigh, even at
          your doors. If our souls and our bodies are not looking forth for
          the coming of the Son of Man, and after we are dead, if we are
          not looking forth, &c., we shall be among those who are calling
          for the rocks to fall upon us, &c.
          The hearts of the children of men will have to be turned to their
          fathers, and the fathers to the children, living or dead, to
          prepare them for the coming of the Son of Man. If Elijah did not
          come, the whole earth would be smitten.
          There will be here and there a Stake for the gathering of the
          Saints. Some may have cried peace, but the Saints and the world
          will have little peace from henceforth. Let this not hinder us
          from going to the Stakes; for God has told us to flee, not
          dallying, or we shall be scattered, one here, and another there.
          There your children shall be blessed, and you in the midst of
          friends, where you may be blessed. The Gospel net gathers of
          every kind.
          I prophesy that the man who tarries after he has an opportunity
          of going will be afflicted by the Devil. Wars are at hand: we
          must not delay, but are not required to sacrifice. We ought to
          have the building up of Zion as our greatest object. When wars
          come, we shall have to flee to Zion. The cry is to make haste.
          The last revelation says, "Ye shall not have time to have" gone
          over the earth, until these things come. It will come as did the
          cholera, war, fires, and earthquakes, one pestilence after
          another, &c., until the Ancient of Days come; then judgment will
          be given to the Saints.
          Whatever you may hear about me or Kirtland, take no notice of it;
          for if it be a place of refuge, the Devil will use his greatest
          efforts to trap the Saints. You must make yourselves acquainted
          with those men who, like Daniel, pray three times a day to the
          house of the Lord. Look to the Presidency and receive
          instructions. Every man who is afraid, covetous, &c., will be
          taken in a snare. The time is soon coming when no man will have
          any peace but in Zion and her Stakes.
          I saw men hunting the lives of their own sons, and brother
          murdering brother, women killing their own daughters, and
          daughters seeking the lives of their mothers. I saw armies
          arrayed against armies; I saw blood, desolation, fires, &c. The
          Son of Man has said that the mother shall be against the
          daughter, and the daughter against the mother, &c. These things
          are at our doors. They will follow the Saints of God from city to
          city. Satan will rage, and the spirit of the Devil is now
          enraged. I know not how soon these things will take place; and
          with a view of them, shall I cry peace? No. I will lift up my
          voice and testify of them. How long you will have good crops, and
          the famine will be kept off, I do not know. When the fig-tree
          leaves, know then that summer is nigh at hand.
          We may look for angels and receive their ministrations, but we
          are to try the spirits and prove them, for it is often the case
          that men make a mistake in regard to these things. God has so
          ordained that, when he has communicated, no vision is to be taken
          but what you see by the seeing of the eye, or what you hear by
          the hearing of the ear. When you see a vision, pray for the
          interpretation. If you get not this, shut it up. There must be
          certainty in this matter. An open vision will manifest that which
          is more important. Lying spirits are going forth in the earth.
          There will be great manifestations of spirit, both false and
          true. Being born again comes by the Spirit of God, through
          ordinances. An angel of God never has wings. Some will say that
          they have seen a spirit,--that he offered them his hand, but they
          did not touch it. This is a lie. First, it is contrary to the
          plan of God. A spirit cannot come but in glory. An angel has
          flesh and bones: we see not their glory. The Devil may appear as
          an angel of light. Ask God to reveal it. If it be of the Devil,
          he will flee from you; if or God, he will manifest himself, or
          make it manifest. We may come to Jesus and ask him: he will know
          all about it. If he comes to a little child, he will adapt
          himself to the language and capacity of a little child.
          Every spirit, or vision, or singing is not of God. The Devil is
          an orator. He is powerful. He took our Saviour on to a pinnacle
          of the Temple, and kept him in the wilderness for forty days. The
          gift of discerning spirits will be given to the Presiding Elder.
          Pray for him that he may have this gift. Speak not in the gift of
          tongues without understanding it, or without interpretation. The
          Devil can speak in tongues: the Adversary will come with his
          work. He can tempt all classes--can speak in English or Dutch.
          Let no one speak in tongues, unless he interpret, except by the
          consent of the one who is placed to preside; then he may discern
          or interpret, or another may. Let us seek for the glory of
          Abraham, Noah, Adam, the Apostles, who have communion with these
          things, and then we shall be among that number when Christ comes.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Joseph
          Young, April 8, 1857
                             Joseph Young, April 8, 1857
                                 TO PREACHERS, ETC.
            Discourse by President Joseph Young, delivered in the Bowery,
              Great Salt Lake City, Wednesday Afternoon, April 8, 1857.
                               Reported by J. V. Long.
          I suppose, if I can make you hear who are away at the back side
          of this vast congregations, that those between here and there
          will be able to hear also; but I fear that it will be a difficult
          I am a policeman, or, in other words, I profess to be a
          peacemaker, and I believe this is the calling of a policeman;
          consequently, when I see any difficulty or trouble betwixt any
          two of my brethren, or any two of my fellow-creatures, if my
          interference is solicited, I feel called upon to make peace and
          to reconcile the parties. If, therefore, I see any difficulties
          in this city--if I see any abuse practised upon a fellow-citizen,
          I feel called upon to interfere. This is in me; it is an inherent
          principle in me: I cannot cast it out. I love to see the rights
          of my brethren and sisters maintained: that is my disposition
          I endorse what brother Brigham has said; I do it with all my
          heart; and I do know, as brother John observed this morning, that
          the revelations of Jesus Christ are accompanied with good
          common-sense. I have never seen any but what were the best sense
          that I have ever seen manifested.
          I am a member of this institution which has been spoken of,
          called the "Carrying Company;" I am one of those men, and I feel
          interested in it. But, says one, have you got an investment
          there? Yes, I have,--not exactly in dollars and cents, but I have
          got my faith and goodwill there; and then you can put with that
          all that I have on this earth; and if you don't believe it, try
          me: it is all on hand.
          I am not only for this, but for every other investment and scheme
          which is made through the proper channel; for I feel that I
          belong to this Church and kingdom. If I do not, I know not where
          I belong.
          I am a citizen of this planet, and I do not know that I have ever
          done anything to forfeit my citizenship. I feel that I have an
          inheritance in these chambers of the mountains, and I have never
          forfeited that before this body of people.
          Do this people inherit the blessings promised? They do. Some are
          afraid to plant and to build, for fear we should not stay here
          long enough to eat and inhabit. Will I plant an orchard? Yes sir,
          I will. To what extent will I improve? To as great an extent as I
          should, if I knew that I were to be a citizen of this Territory
          through all generations. I would plant as much as I should want,
          if I knew that I and my posterity were to live here till the last
          trumpet shall sound.
          [President H. C. Kimball: They will, if they have a mind to; for
          there are not devils who can drive them away from here, if they
          do right.]
          I will never cease my exertions here, but I will do all that I
          can to beautify the place. I have done my best to do so,
          according to my means: I have planted my grape-cuttings, and I
          have eaten some fruit; I have planted my peach orchard, and have
          eaten the fruit thereof; and I rejoice to see improvements among
          this people.
          I had the pleasure of planting some three pecks of apple seeds in
          Nauvoo, thinking they would be use full to some body, and I
          believe the trees are there now that grew from those seeds. Yes,
          there are orchards and vineyards there now, and they will stand
          there as proofs that this people have been an industrious people.
          Why, I tell you, my brethren and sisters, it is one of the
          greatest follies for men to say that they will not improve
          because they are not going to stay here. I will build as good a
          place as I feel I need here; and I will say something else: I
          would like to see the Temple of the Lord built, and I feel that
          if it is his will that I should live, I will do what I can
          towards building that Temple, for I want to see it reared.
          Brethren, let us rear that Temple--give it into the hands of
          those who manage the affairs of the kingdom, and all the means
          that we can, so that the work may be accomplished speedily, and
          that we may have a renewal of our endowments.
          "Why," says one, "the endowments are going on." That is true: a
          portion of the endowments are going on, but there are other
          things that never will until the Temple is built,--of which are
          the baptism for the dead and our endowments by proxy for our dead
          friends. Are they going on? No. Will they, before that house is
          built? No, not that I know of. That is one sermon.
          There is another thing. Who is there that feels generous towards
          that man who has gone beyond the vail--who is gone where he
          cannot do anything for himself? I tell you I want to see that
          spirit among the brethren. Suppose, therefore, we get rid of some
          of our selfishness, and be willing, if proper, to take the wife
          of some faithful brother who has passed behind the vail, and
          raise up posterity unto him. If we can do this, in connexion with
          other duties which we have to perform, we shall be doing good for
          others as well as for ourselves.
          What do the Scriptures say? "There is no work, nor device, nor
          knowledge, nor wisdom in the grave, whither thou goest."
          No--there is no device there, for so says brother Brigham, the
          Prophet. He says that all the endowments have to be given on this
          side of the vail, or they never will be given. [President B.
          Young: That is true.]
          I can say, when I see what there is to do--the mighty work that
          has to be performed for the living and the dead, the
          responsibility is great. Who can estimate it? And good order has
          got to be observed in regard to this eternal inheritance which is
          in store for the faithful; for without it all are perishing; but
          by the Gospel and its power there is an eternal endurance, and we
          have had some forecast of a few things that are in reserve for
          the faithful Saints.
          I feel, as brother Brigham says, that I want to see that Temple
          built. Did you ever sit down and meditate, when all was quiet,
          when the spirit of serenity seemed to fill the whole house, and
          when it seemed as if there was some messenger there? If you have,
          although you did not see him, there was a messenger there--there
          was a good spirit present. As you continue to contemplate upon
          the dead, you say, "How I wish I could do something for the
          redemption of the dead!"
          You could not bear to behold that messenger who whispers in your
          ears and invites you to be active in doing a work for your dead
          friends. That messenger will inspire you with a desire to do
          something for those who have passed behind the vail. Every man
          that has the spirit of philanthropy feels that he is willing to
          do anything for the great and glorious work of redeeming and
          exalting the dead.
          You are also anxious to enter into the Carrying Company, to
          gather the Saints whose faith is in our God, and whose eyes are
          turned towards brother Brigham, who is the head of the Church and
          kingdom of God upon the earth. To him they look for their
          deliverance from the thraldom and oppression of the world.
          I now want to preach a sermon to the home missionaries. I do not
          want to hear them preach too long sermons, neither when they are
          out in the country settlements, nor anywhere else. I should like
          to have them preach as long as the subject before them is
          interesting, and so long as the Spirit of the Lord is feeding the
          flock of Christ.
          Jesus at one time addressed himself to Peter and said, "Peter do
          you love me?" "Yes," was the reply. "Well, then, feed my sheep."
          And again Jesus interrogated him in the same manner, and Peter
          answered in the affirmative. Then said Jesus, "Simon Peter, son
          of Jonas, lovest thou me?" Peter answered, "Lord, thou knowest
          all things, and thou knowest that I love thee." Jesus replied,
          "Feed my lambs."
          I believe in this doctrine. When the Elders can feed the people,
          it is all right for them to continue their discourses; but when
          the Spirit is becoming dull and is declining, or, in other words,
          when the pond is run out, then is the time to stop; for this
          grinding by hand I do not believe in.
          I know that some preach the everlasting Gospel, and that is a
          good thing; but I believe that a man can preach it in five
          I love short sermons, and when I am in the country at Conference
          and other meetings, I feel that they are particularly good, and I
          rejoice so long as the Elders feed the people. But when the
          Spirit ceases to operate through a man, I want him to sit down.
          It makes me think of a Scotchman, who, when he was a preceptor in
          an academy, was required to give lectures at certain periods,
          according to the regulations of the institution. On one occasion
          he said, "I will give you the following lecture:--Never speak but
          when you have something to say, and always stop when you get
          I do love to hear men talk good talk, as the Indians say. It is
          the best and sweetest music I ever hear. I won't even except
          brother Smithies' big fiddle. The music of the human voice is
          sweeter to me than that of any stringed instrument. I do not care
          how illiterate the man is who speaks, although learning is very
          good; yet, if he speaks by the inspiration of the Holy Ghost,
          that is what I like to hear.
          Brother William Kimball could not have told me his feelings
          better than I know them, for I understood that he felt just as he
          described. I can tell you that I would rather hear a few words
          dictated by the Spirit of God than hear a long sermon delivered
          without the dictation of that Spirit.
          I am for the building of the Temple, for the Express and Carrying
          Company, and the gathering of the Saints from all nations; and if
          I had ten thousand dollars, I would invest it in such enterprizes
          as these.
          I have one boy going to England this spring. I have another in
          the Printing Office, and that leaves me almost entirely alone;
          yet I feel to say, Hallelujah! I am glad that my son Seymour is
          going to England, for I know it will do him good. he is filled
          with the spirit of preaching already.
          I can tell you, my friends, it is very pleasing to me to know
          that my children are advancing in knowledge and usefulness; and I
          sometimes hear them talk, after they return from meeting,
          somewhat as follows:--"Who preached to-night?" "The Bishop." "Who
          else?" "Oh, brother Clinton and brother Wheelock." And they seem
          to think that all the speakers talked so well that it would be
          hard to tell who talked the best.
          Now, do you not see, my friends, that these boys--children I may
          call them--have got a relish for the Spirit and power of God? My
          little girls also go to meeting in their turns, and they will
          inquire of each other who preached. If the answer be that the
          Bishop preached, or any other man, the next question generally
          is, "Did he preach will?" "Oh yes," the reply is; "he talked
          first rate;" and I find that they are filled with the spirit of
          animation and of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I have not heard
          them say "dance" the past winter.
          I do not discard the practice of dancing; therefore do not
          misunderstand me; for "Mormonism," or the Gospel of Jesus Christ,
          embraces all that is good, and dancing is a scriptural precedent;
          and it is said that they should go forth in the last days in the
          dance. Well, upon this principle, we believe in dancing, and a
          certain portion of it is useful to the limbs and to the joints,
          and to the spirits as well.
          But notwithstanding all this wherever there is too much of any
          one thing, it very naturally produces a reaction; and
          consequently, there is a suspension of dancing for the present.
          If our children do not dance when they are young, the
          sprightliness, the vigour, and activity of youth are in a manner
          checked. My father, when I was a boy, would not allow me to give
          vent to the life and vigour that were in me; and now, if I were
          to give way to may feelings at times, I should dance too much.
          [President H. C. Kimball: You would dance the bones out of joint,
          I suppose.]
          It is not necessary that you should dance the whole of the spirit
          out of you at once; for if you do, you will have none left, and
          consequently, no disposition to dance any more. I thought last
          winter that the people would tire themselves dancing. When the
          "driftwood" was taken away, and the course was clear, they danced
          as if they were never going to stop.
          I felt glad yesterday to hear what was said by brother Brigham
          and also by other who addressed us, and I felt so well that I
          could have danced. This is the way I feel a great deal of the
          time. As I observed, my father checked the stream of diversion in
          us, and would not allow his boys to dance at all; and probably
          that is the reason why I feel so much like it now.
          It is natural for our children to live the Gospel, for religion
          is a natural thing--it is perfectly natural. You may take a
          child, and just as soon as you can put it in possession of
          doctrine, that child will love the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Only
          let it understand right from wrong, and there will be nothing but
          Gospel in that child. If we set a proper example before our sons
          and daughters, the Gospel will be manifested through all their
          actions, and there will be no evil desire in them.
          I want to know the bounds of my prerogatives in the Priesthood,
          and never want to go beyond those bounds.
          [President B. Young: Shall I give them to you?]
          Yes. I want to know them. It is better for a man to run a little
          behind the line that to have him go before it. I know there are
          some things that I can say and do, and there are things that
          brother Brigham can say and do that I cannot: it is not my
          Here are brother Brigham, brother Heber, and brother Wells, the
          First Presidency; then there are the Twelve; then right behind
          them come the Seventies and the High Priests--two mighty bodies
          of men, whose business it is to act under the direction of the
          two first Quorums; and then come the Elders, Priests, Teachers,
          and Deacons, who constitute the organization of the Priesthood in
          the Church, and who are called to assist in preparing the way for
          Jesus to come. We are (all who magnify their calling and
          Priesthood) trying to prepare a people for his coming, to purge
          out those that are filthy, and to put away every evil and wrong
          from us, and to prepare for the great weight of glory that is to
          In order to do this, we are under the necessity of chastising;
          and the greatest proof to me that there is a man standing at the
          head who holds communion with God is, to see men receive
          chastisement in the spirit of humility, without a murmur, and be
          satisfied that it is for their good.
          My opinion was, before I received the Gospel, and is the same
          now, that the man who has the hardihood and the boldness to
          rebuke his brethren and to tell them of their faults and of their
          errors is a man of God. Brethren, I want to get rid of my errors.
          Brother Brigham said to-day, when he addressed you, that he
          wanted those who stand up to instruct the Saints to say something
          worth hearing; and hence there has been within me a feeling of
          extreme diffidence, when arising to address you, not only to-day,
          but on many other occasions; for there is not in me the power and
          wisdom to bring out great principles before the Saints; but
          brother Brigham and brother Heber can. I feel a delicacy in
          standing before such a vast multitude as are here present,
          knowing that there are many bright minds in this congregation.
          Some think they could say a good deal, if they could have the
          privilege of coming upon this stand; but when they come here,
          everything seems to be shut out from their minds, and they can
          scarcely say a word. The vast amount of intellect--of knowledge
          that this people possess oftentimes throws persons who speak
          before them into great confusion.
          It is the most peculiar place--the most delicate situation that a
          man can be placed in; and hence I say that the simpler a man is
          the better. On this very account it is that I am contending with
          myself all the time and endeavouring to be pointed in my sayings;
          for I do not want to go round about, but to say things just as
          they are.
          When I retain the Spirit of God--when that light is in me which
          was with Jesus in all his counsellings, at such time all the
          beings upon the face of the earth would not intimidate me; but,
          with a mortal tabernacle, we are subject to the weaknesses of
          mortality. To communicate intelligence to this people, unless God
          first communicates to me, is impossible; but when he does inspire
          me with his Spirit, and I speak the thing right out, nobody need
          find any fault; and if they do, it cannot be helped, for we must
          speak that which the Spirit dictates.
          I once knew a little boy who was in the habit of being whipped by
          his mother when he went to bed, in order to make him go to sleep,
          and he became so habituated to the whipping that he could not go
          to sleep without it, and he would say, "Mother, come and whip
          I do not desire to be of that class but desire to so live as to
          be able to discern true intelligence and present it before the
          people in a way that they can all understand.
          Brother Brigham told me to Get up here and say something. I have
          done so, and will now tell you that my all is invested in this
          kingdom: it is all for the establishment of the Church of Jesus
          Christ of Latter-day Saints. Not gold, nor silver, nor the
          perishable things of this world are invaluable to me,--such
          articles will perish and moulder away,--but those imperishable
          treasure that can never be destroyed--the inestimable riches that
          God has put into my possession; for these, my life, my good will,
          my faith, my prayers, and all that I can do and possess are
          devoted to the establishment of righteousness and the building up
          of the kingdom of God in the earth. All my substance and every
          faculty which God has given me are subject to the word of brother
          When a man thus surrenders himself, his family, his means, and
          everything the controls to the servants of God, what will he have
          in return? We have left all and have come off into these valleys,
          in the midst of the Rocky Mountains; and what shall we have as a
          reward? Jesus said, "There is no man that hath left house, or
          parents, or brethren, or wife, or children, for the kingdom of
          God's sake, who shall not receive manifold more in this present
          time, and in the world to come life everlasting." Is there not a
          compensation here promised? There is.
          Here is a key. When the Devil comes to you and asks you if you
          want to serve God, tell hem that it is none of his business, and
          that will bluff off the devil.
          Brother Kimball has said that if I had not been sick, I should
          have died; and I don't know but I should. I believe it has all
          been for my good and I can truly say I have not felt so well for
          many years as I have felt since I recovered form my sickness last
          January. When a man is sick, if the mind is uneasy, it injures
          the body. Since I have got well, I have made a practice of
          sitting down contemplating and holding communion with God and my
          own heart; and I do feel and know that I am an heir of salvation;
          and I do not mean that any enemies shall take this hope and
          assurance away from me.
          I have thought sometimes that I would never die till I had been
          to Europe. When we went to Quincy, after we were mobbed out of
          Missouri, and a number of brethren were selected to go on
          missions, I recollect what brother Brigham said on that occasion.
          He remarked, "If they did not go and preach, they will
          apostatize." I do not know but he made the remark in my presence
          for my benefit.
          Well, we had just survived the bloody persecutions of Missouri,
          and had got into Illinois, and were all as poor as a church mouse
          ever was, and many of us felt almost disheartened. We had neither
          cow, nor ox, nor horse, not one in twenty of us; but the people
          were humane enough to take us in and assist us a little.
          Finally, however, the people of Illinois became hostile, and
          would not let us live in their midst; and we were forced to seek
          a home in the midst of these mountains; and, for one, I feel to
          rejoice that I am here in this healthy climate. But, as a
          Canadian would say, "This is not a poor man's country;" but I
          believe that it is the best place on earth for this people at the
          present time.
          Brother Brigham has redeemed his word in bringing the people
          here, for he said he would lead this people to a healthy climate.
          We are here in the midst of these peaceful valleys and mountains;
          and I do not believe that we shall ever be driven from here, if
          we do right,--never, no never.
          I have no trouble about this; for I have been in the midst of
          mobs, and they once held a council and determined to murder me
          and my family; but the Lord turned away their anger. This was in
          Missouri. They demanded our arms; but the brethren said they
          would not give them up--that they would sooner die. I said,
          "Brethren, I am captain of this company, and you should listen to
          me and to my counsel, and give up your arms." They did so, and
          by-and-by the hearts of those men were melted, (they were
          Kentuckians, who had been called upon to assist the mob,) and
          they came to us and said, "We will pay you for your arms when the
          war is over." No doubt they talked the matter over, and said,
          "These are good people; therefore let us pay them for their
          arms." At any rate, they paid down their money, but we had to use
          I do not want to detain you, brethren and sisters; but I do
          rejoice that we are in these valleys, where there is nothing to
          induce our enemies to come and drive us. We do not presume that
          they will come, unless they are paid for coming. And if they ever
          do come, it is my earnest prayer that I may be filled with the
          Holy Ghost; then, peradventure, I shall want to carry the flag
          and be foremost in putting our enemies to flight. But if this
          people will retain the Spirit of God, and keep fanning the flame
          of the reformation that is in them, our enemies will not come to
          distress us--we shall not be molested; for no power can disturb
          us so long as we are faithful.
          May God bless us all and preserve us upon the earth, and continue
          our usefulness, until we have redeemed our families and
          friends--till we all are brought up and fitted for his presence;
          which is my prayer, in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Ezra T.
          Benson, September 12, 1852
                         Ezra T. Benson, September 12, 1852
                                LIBERTY, REFORM, ETC.
              Remarks by Elder Ezra T. Benson, made in the Tabernacle,
                      Great Salt Lake City, September 12, 1852.
          As there is an opportunity, I arise to make a few remarks. I
          suppose the same privilege is granted to me that has been given
          to brother Grant.
          I feel that it is a privilege when a man can rise before a
          congregation like this and say what he has a mind to. It is a law
          of liberty. It is certainly like that Gospel which Paul preached
          in his day. He said it was a Gospel of liberty unto all that
          embraced it; and I am well persuaded, even to a certain
          knowledge, that this is the Gospel that you have embraced, and
          that this is the people of the Saints. When we talk about
          liberty, I consider it is liberty to do just about right--to do
          that which shall be for the good of the community we dwell with,
          for the society of the Saints, and the kingdom of God on earth.
          I merely rise to bear testimony to what brother Grant has said;
          and I think, if there is any man in the city who ought to have
          the privilege of saying what he has in mind to, he ought, for he
          is the Mayor of the city. He is a man, therefore who ought to be
          backed up by the people; and I am happy and rejoice to see such a
          spirit manifested in the congregation to-day. From the experience
          I have had, I know it to be right. The remarks are just in time
          and in season, and they are worthy of the attention of every
          civil person in our community.
          We have come into these valleys to do right; we have come to
          build up the kingdom of God; and we have come that the Saints may
          have a place of rest, that the oppressed may go free, and that we
          may be enlightened and strengthened in the principles of the
          Gospel. If we do not take cognizance of the things that are
          before us, how can we expect that this community can dwell here
          in peace? And if we have not faith and spirit and power enough in
          ourselves to put down anything that is not right in our midst, we
          cannot expect to live here long unmolested. It is well that every
          Elder--that every good person who dwells in this community should
          stamp these evil principles that brother Grant speaks of with
          indignation. I have felt since I have been gone on a mission last
          year to Potowatomie County and the States, the force, power, and
          spirit of the men whom he has been speaking of here to-day; and
          so will every Elder who goes abroad.
          It is just as brother Grant has said--that while they could send
          forth their wrath and indignation to the States--while they could
          stir up the mobs and contention in the midst of the people, it
          was first-rate with them; but when the scale began to turn, and
          the God of heaven began to rule and control things for the good
          of this people, it was then, "How do you do? I feel first rate.
          Come and see me, won't you? Come and eat and drink with me at my
          table, and stay as long as you please." Why? Because God is
          ruling things for our good, and softening the hearts of the
          people, and gathering his Saints from the four corners of the
          earth. Brethren, we are serving a God who is able to bring good
          out of evil for the salvation of his chosen people.
          Concerning dram shops, grog shops, whisky shops, and all shops,
          we heard of this before we arrived in the city. We could scarcely
          believe it; and had we given way to our feelings, we could have
          sat down and cried about it as well as not. When we got here, we
          found it to be true. But I think the medicine which has been laid
          before you to day will prove effectual to some of them. I had not
          the least idea, when I rose up here, that the spiritual knockings
          were so close at my heels; and if I am not mistaken, if you do
          not reform before next Saturday night, you will have some
          temporal knockings that are going to do the business up at once.
          I was called upon by the Prophet in Nauvoo to engage in temporal
          knocking, and we knocked one grocery bottom side up, and away it
          went, grog, glasses, tobacco, snuff, the Devil, and all. (Voice
          in the stand: "And the Devil went with it") Now, the same spirit
          is in the City of Great Salt Lake. The same spirit that dwelt in
          the Prophet of God dwells in the hearts of this people; and all
          we want is for the world to be given and the deed is performed.
          Let me tell you, if we had the power to accomplish this thing in
          Nauvoo, the way we have got it here is not weak. We have the
          power to knock temporally. We will knock them into a cocked hat.
          All we want is for the Mayor to say the work, and it shall be
          done. I know there are Elders here before me who would do the job
          up clean to night, if necessary, and cleanse the city of these
          Is far as merchants are concerned, I care but little about them,
          I believe every word that brother Grant has said: they would
          flood this valley with shin-plasters, and carry away our gold. If
          there is a banking institution to be given to this people, let it
          be done by the President of the Church, and let us have the
          benefit of it, and not men who would cut your throats to get your
          money from you. I do not expect, however, that they will trouble
          me any, for I do not seem to get hold of much money. I am a
          stranger to it. I do not want any shin-plasters. I am a Democrat,
          so far as that goes, and believe in a hard currency, until God
          shall establish another; and if he goes in for shin-plasters, I
          am in for them too. I want the brethren who have them to return
          the paper to the counters to-morning, and know if they possess a
          disposition to cash them. If they do, they will redeem them. You
          would look well walking round here with fifty thousand dollars of
          worthless paper in your pocket. Who is there in this community,
          Jew or Gentile, who will do right, but what has been blessed an
          prospered, and has the good feelings of this people?
          I can go to St. Louis as poor as I am; and notwithstanding what
          has been said to hurt the credit of this people, I can get as
          many goods as I could wish, even if I have not a single dollar in
          my pocket. I could get all I could get brought over the Plains.
          But I did not go for gold and silver, nor did the Elders who went
          with me. We went to do good to the kingdom of God. Have we done
          it to your satisfaction? ["Yes."] May God bless you then; and may
          you continue to be blessed and prospered to your satisfaction,
          and put every evil thing away from your sight. I know you can do
          it, and all will be right.
          It is not temporal things we are after, nor temporal knockings;
          but you, brethren, who keep dram-shops, go and put them away, and
          put your bottles away, and say you will spread no more poison
          among this people until you are commanded. If a man cannot get a
          living here without selling whisky--without keeping a little
          dram-shop, it is time he was going somewhere else; for be assured
          you will never get rich here by selling whisky. It is a curse to
          this people, and it will rest upon you that follow that business.
          I have not been commanded to say what I have this afternoon, but
          it rests upon my own shoulders. If I talk wrong to this people, I
          am willing to be chastised by my brethren all the time. If men
          take the liberty of going to St. Louis, and there using my name,
          we will say what we please, and in any place we please. Neither
          are we afraid to say it in St. Louis, or in any other place. We
          are ready to meet it anywhere. Brethren, look out for temporal
          knockings, for we are on hand. God bless you! Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Parley
          P. Pratt, December 26, 1853
                         Parley P. Pratt, December 26, 1853
             An Address delivered by P. P. Pratt, at the Fourteenth Ward
                     School-house on Monday, December 26, 1853.
          My friends,--As we are assembled on this occasion, I desire to
          speak upon the subject of education. I consider that we never
          lived in a more important time than we do now. The Lord has
          something for every member of has Church and kingdom to perform,
          for he has a great work to do. I consider that every faculty we
          possess should be called into action; and this work is so
          important, that no time should be lost. Hence we see the
          necessity of schools, that we and our children may be prepared to
          perform all that the Lord requires of us. What kind of a
          qualification is necessary for us to perform this work? The first
          thing necessary is for us to obtain the good Spirit of the Lord,
          and then keep it. Without this we cannot do much good. If the
          Lord wants a railroad built, or any great manual labour
          performed, which the Saints are not yet able to do, he inspires
          the nations of the earth to perform the work, as they have the
          means to do it with, notwithstanding the nations know not God,
          neither do they serve him. We are not prepared to do the work of
          God acceptably, unless we keep his commandments. In order to
          enjoy his Spirit, we must pursue a course of life that will meet
          his approbation--we must do the things that God requires of us.
          The people may be looking for some mysteries from me to-day; but
          the older I grow, I feel to be the more simple. What are the
          means ordained of God for the benefit of our children as well as
          ourselves? I do not now refer to the obeying of the ordinances of
          the Gospel alone, for that we all know to be necessary for both
          ourselves and children. But what were those means laid down in
          1830? We are informed in the commandments and law of the Church
          given unto us, that "It is the Teacher's duty to see that the
          Church meets together often, and also see that all the members do
          their duty." Do this people do this? No. Our children are or
          should be all members of the Church, for they should be baptised
          at eight years of age; but do they meet together often to pray
          and speak one to another, or even all the parents of the
          children? They do not. Then they do not do their duty. All
          officers in the Church are teachers, except the Deacons, and they
          are Assistant-Teachers. Who should be exempt from meeting
          together often if any exceptions should be made? It should be the
          mother with her nursing infant, who cannot go. All others should
          meet together often; and when they come together, the Teacher
          that presides should see that each one takes part in their turn
          and do their duty. Can the Teacher find any member, either
          parents or children, that don't pray. If so, he can find those
          that do not do their duty; for when you were baptised you
          covenanted to keep the commandments of God, and he has commanded
          us to pray. Us, each member should take a part. Which of you can
          find a teacher in our schools that would spend all his time in
          hearing one or two children say their lessons and all the rest
          remain idle? You would turn such a teacher out of doors. The Lord
          is not less wise than man. He has so arranged the school for his
          children that each one is required to do his duty. As all
          officers are Teachers, it should be the duty of some one--the
          Bishop, or some one under his direction, to see that the children
          and young people, as well as all the others in each Ward, are
          collected together, and that they be taught to pray and to speak,
          and be instructed in all things that are necessary; for we and
          our children should learn and understand, and improve upon every
          branch of science, knowledge and duty that is necessary for us,
          as well as to confine ourselves to any one of those branches.
          Moroni said it was necessary for the people to meet together
          often to pray, speak, and teach. When I go abroad, and the people
          do not do any better, and are so wild, I do not know any better
          answer than that we do not do our duty to them. The question
          arises, What is the matter with our children? They are full of
          vigour and spirit, and they want some way to let it out. But if
          the Latter-day Saints will do their duty, and gather their
          children together and train their minds in that channel in which
          they have soon got to walk, in following the footsteps of their
          parents in bearing off the kingdom of God, we shall hear no more
          complaint about them. Is this a mystery--a new thing? No. It is
          according to the revelations and commandments of God, and it
          should be taught and practised in every Ward in this city and in
          every Branch of the Church wherever it exists, lest we come under
          condemnation. The people of Zion once were told that they were
          under condemnation, and would remain under it until they
          remembered to do the things that were taught them. If we met
          together often and did our duty, what time should we have to be
          idle? None at all. If all men, and women, and children met
          together to pray and teach, they would feel that they must live
          consistent with their professions, and they would in a great
          measure cease to do evil. Then how long would it be before the
          Spirit of God would rest upon our children? And how long would it
          be said that "I am sorry that we have got to fort up, because the
          children of my neighbours are so bad that they will spoil mine?"
          Not long; but it would be said, "I am glad that we can be
          together--that we can have such good schools and prayer-meetings;
          and the children have such a good spirit, that it encourages mine
          to good works." We have to be called to this, for we have to be
          tried in all things; for if we were not, we should not differ
          from the Gentiles, who will neither borrow nor lend. The Gentile
          priests have not been tried in the kanyons and many other places,
          as our Elders have; but we have been tried in a manner that it
          has taught us to help each other to teach each other. When our
          children meet to sing, pray, and speak, some may not want to do
          it. They may say it is too great a trial for them; yet they can
          do it. With a little practice, that feeling will pass away. Let
          the names of all in the Ward be taken and given to the Teacher,
          whether it be the Bishop or any one that takes the lead of the
          school or meeting, and let him call upon each one in their turn
          to pray or speak. Should any young man say, "I wish to be
          excused, for I got drunk the other day, and would not like to
          speak," you then are the very one that ought to pray, and repent,
          and do better. But what shall I say? Say that you got drunk, and
          ask the school to forgive you, and that you mean to do better (if
          you do intend to). This would be a good speech, if you could say
          nothing more. But if you don't intend to do better, tell them so;
          say you intend to get drunk every chance you can get, and do all
          the mischief you can: then the Teacher will know what to do with
          you--cut you off from the Church, and have no more trouble with
          you. Let the child say, "I have been thinking of this work, and
          mean to keep the commandments of God," or something of this kind,
          if he can say it in truth; but speak the truth at all times. You
          could say something, and you would increase in confidence. Some
          one may think, "If I should speak or pray, I should spoil the
          English language." No matter. In your prayers you do not need to
          say a great many things to make a speech; but begin by saying
          "Our Father, who art in heaven;" then ask for those things that
          you want and have faith to obtain, and not ask for a thousand
          things that you don't expect to get. And how may things can we
          think of that we should thank the Lord for! No matter how broken
          your speech, you can ask for what you want of men. But the child
          does not often ask the parent for anything worth a hundred
          dollars, for they would not expect to get it; but they would ask
          for bread when they were hungry, in confidence and get it. I
          would ask the Lord for things according to my wants and faith, as
          Elijah did when he asked for rain, when there had not been any
          for three years and six months. What would you think to hear
          brother Pratt pray, and saying, "O Lord, give me some bread
          to-day?" This I have had to do all my life. I ask God daily for
          those things which I want. Now, do not mock God by asking him for
          those things you do not expect to get.
          When the children come to meeting, and any one should stand out,
          and would not speak or pray, they will soon come to it, for they
          would not like to be out of fashion, and we should make praying,
          speaking, and righteousness fashionable. Then it would not be a
          trial to do our duty; and all could be taught, and our follies
          and errors be corrected. The Teachers should be very particular
          that all the members speak, pray, and do their duty. What, if we
          should neglect this branch of the kingdom, and our children
          should be called to make their first speech, and that should be
          before Congress or before any body of men where it required
          confidence, care, and wisdom to present their views in a clear,
          distinct, and understanding manner. I would not be in that
          situation for a thousand dollars. But let our children commence
          speaking together, and learn while they are children. And their
          minds should be stored with good things in the days of their
          youth; for what good would it do this people to live till the
          coming of Christ, if they were not doing the work of God and
          preparing themselves for it, but spending their time in
          All of us may not be called to go on missions, but all should
          live in such a manner that they may be useful in the kingdom of
          God. Every woman should help her husband to fulfil his mission.
          If I am an Apostle? She may be engaged in helping in the
          apostleship. And every sister that desires it can find an
          opportunity of doing good in the kingdom of God.
          How many of you in former days have spoken with delight of the
          work that was promised you should perform, in you patriarchal
          blessings,--that you should teach and instruct the Lamanites, not
          only in the Gospel, but in domestic labours. This mission is now
          about to open before you. I hope all will be ready to fulfil it;
          and if all set a good example before them, it will do much good;
          but if some set a bad example before them, it will do great evil,
          and they will say, "Mormon like Indian; good Mormon and bad
          Mormon, good Indian and bad Indian."
          I have not said anything about our letters. The Regency are
          getting out a new alphabet; and when we learn our letters
          ourselves, we will teach others. We should improve all our time
          to a good advantage. We have no time to spend in reading novels
          or false things. Read the best books--the Bible, Book of Mormon,
          Doctrine and Covenants, and those things that contain truth. Do
          you think the people read those books enough? No. Now, do not
          neglect those things. We want the knowledge those books
          contain--the prophecies and doctrines, &c.
          Is there one thing that we can neglect and do our duty? No; for
          while we neglect those things, we can pray for more faith? No.
          Can we do our duty as parents, by reading novels or permitting
          our children to do it, and neglect history, prophecy, and the
          revelations of God, which contain his commandments unto us, and
          those principles whereby we become exalted and saved in his
          presence and be purified? We cannot. May God bless you! Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 /
          Jedediah M. Grant, June 28, 1854
                          Jedediah M. Grant, June 28, 1854
                                    APOSTASY, &c.
           Remarks by President Jedediah M. Grant, made in the Tabernacle,
                        Great Salt Lake City, June 28, 1854.
          I am pleased that this Conference convened upon the 27th, for it
          is a date written indelibly upon our memories.
          We have been blessed in hearing the testimonies which have been
          borne by Presidents Young and Kimball, and Elder Taylor. I think
          the majority of this congregation, though they might not be able
          to bear as strong a testimony as those who have spoken, can bear
          testimony that the Lord our God, by the inspiration of the Holy
          Ghost, has revealed to them that Joseph Smith, while he lived,
          was a Prophet of God, inspired by the revelations of the Almighty
          to unfold the eternal truths of heaven to a perishing world.
          I believe that the feelings of this people respond to the
          testimony that has been borne to-day; and if we should wait here
          for all this people to express their feelings in relation to
          their confidence in Joseph Smith as a messenger of heaven, and in
          the revelations of God through him, we should have to wait many
          There are some things we know by seeing, and other things we know
          by hearing, tasting, smelling, &c.; but the light of the Eternal
          Spirit that brought us out of darkness into the Church of God is
          the great abiding testimony of this people.
          Indeed, men have apostatized after they have seen and heard
          Joseph, after they have seen angels, after they have seen the
          sick healed, and after they have spoken in tongues and
          prophesied, and had the interpretation of tongues. You will
          recollect that long since I gave you my advice in relation to the
          proper time a man ought to apostatize. My advice was that he
          should never apostatize in a dark and cloudy day--never when he
          felt bad--never because he felt hard towards his brother or
          brethren in the Church; but when he apostatized, he should wait
          for a clear day, when everything around him is prospering; and
          then, before he apostatized, he should ask counsel.
          In relation to men's apostatizing, I recollect in the upper room
          of the Temple in Kirtland, Ohio, when we were assembled there, a
          very noted man, by the name of Sylvester Smith, bore testimony of
          what he had seen of the Prophet of God, of angels, &c. He said he
          wanted to bear testimony and continued to say, "I have spoken by
          what you call the Holy Ghost; the eyes of my understanding have
          been touched, and I have seen convoy after convoy of angels; I
          have laid hands on the lame, and they have leaped like a hart; I
          have spoken with tongues and had the interpretation thereof; I
          have seen the sick healed time after time;--but let me tell you,
          everything I have seen and everything you have seen is the height
          of idiotism." This was Sylvester Smith, after he apostatized.
          This was the testimony of an apostate, which is conclusive proof
          to me that a man may see the hosts of heaven--the chariots of
          Israel and the horsemen thereof, and gaze on the glory of God,
          and be filled with the Holy Ghost; and unless he retains the
          Spirit of God, he will apostatize. Therefore my advice to the
          Saints has been, and is, and whenever I give you good advice in
          the future, it will be the same, that you propose in your hearts
          never to depart from God or from his people, only when you are
          filled with the Holy Ghost; and then when you do it, ask counsel
          of his servants.
          I felt glad when brother Brigham nominated John Smith, the son of
          Hyrum, to be our Patriarch. I have been acquainted with his
          father personally. I have lived with him for years, and I know
          the spirit that is in his son; and I know the Lord God has
          promised to bless his children, and that his Spirit will rest
          upon the son, to unfold and teach the eternal truths of heaven to
          bless the people of God.
          I would rather have a young man to fill this office than an old
          man who is filled with the leaven of sectarianism. Give me a man
          who was raised by a "Mormon" father and a "Mormon" mother, and
          raised up in the faith from his childhood. That is the man I want
          to bless me and the people of God.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Heber
          C. Kimball, August 28, 1852
                          Heber C. Kimball, August 28, 1852
            Remarks by President Heber C. Kimball at a Special Conference
           held in the Tabernacle, Great Salt Lake City, August 28, 1852.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          We have come together to-day, according to previous appointment,
          to hold a special Conference, to transact business a month
          earlier than usual, inasmuch as there are Elders to be selected
          to go to the nations of the earth; and they want an earlier start
          than formerly. There will probably be elders chosen to go to the
          four quarters of the globe to transact business, preach the
          gospel, &c.
          I recollect reading in one of the revelations, in the Book of
          Doctrine and covenants, where the Lord says--"If a man, inasmuch
          as he is an Elder, has a desire in his heart to preach the
          Gospel, he it is that is called to preach the Gospel." On the
          other hand, the Scriptures, or some of the other revelations of
          God, say that "many are called, but few are chosen." When a man
          has that desire in his heart, he is called; but, perhaps, not a
          great many will be chosen to go forth and preach the Gospel.
          I suppose you are all aware, by the information that we have
          received from our brethren the Apostles, who have lately returned
          from foreign missions, that the work of God has commenced in many
          nations of Europe and upon the islands of the sea. Still there
          are many nations where the Gospel door has not yet been opened in
          a direct way. Though the foundation has been laid for the
          introduction of the Gospel among them, and indirectly the door
          has been opened to all nations,--that is, it has been opened into
          the main room; still there are a great many adjacent rooms
          leading from that, that have yet to be opened with the smaller
          I want to say one thing before we proceed to the business of
          calling and setting apart those who have to go from this place to
          the nations this season. We have made a selection of a
          considerable number of Elders to leave home and go abroad. This
          may be repugnant to the feelings of some: they may think it is a
          hazardous undertaking. But at the same time, to go now is nothing
          to compare with going out to preach the Gospel fifteen years ago,
          when they had to go, not only without purse or scrip, but without
          any knowledge that there was a friend to take them by the hand
          when they arrived at their destination. Now they cannot go to any
          part of the world, scarcely, but they will find themselves among
          the Saints.
          It is a pleasure to preach the truth. I will say, to those who
          love to do the will of the Father, as it was with Jesus Christ;
          for says he, "Father, not my will, but thine be done;" I wish to
          know nothing but thy will, and that I will do until I spend my
          life. Did he not do this? He did. You require that same spirit
          and determination to carry out the same purpose; and I beg and
          beseech of you, brethren, you that shall be chosen, when you are
          elected, to go, if you don't live until you get to the United
          States; for when men are called and set apart to the ministry to
          go to the nations of the earth, if they refuse to go, it is death
          to them--that is, to their characters as faithful Elders in
          Israel: they go down and not up, backward and nor forward. I
          merely speak of this from my own experience, for I have had one
          in this Church of upwards twenty years. I was raised up as it
          were with the Prophet; I lived with him to the day of his death.
          As to our present Prophets and Elders, brother Brigham Young I
          have lived with, with him I have travelled, and with him I have
          suffered. I have eat and slept with him, and been by his side
          almost my whole life. I could say with propriety, and I can say
          it with truth, that Joseph Smith was a Prophet of God, a Seer, a
          Revelator, an Apostle of Jesus, and was ordained directly under
          the hands of Peter, James, and John; and he died a Prophet, and
          Hyrum died a Patriarch of Jesus--a father in Israel.
          Brother Brigham Young is the successor of Joseph Smith; and a
          better man never lived upon the earth, nor ever sought the
          interest of this people more fervently from morning until night,
          and vice versa, than he has done. Did he not travel in the days
          of Joseph? He did, from the time he came into the Church until
          the death of Joseph; and so did I. Did we ever hesitate for one
          moment? No, not for a moment.
          Jesus sought to do the will of his Father in heaven; so it was
          our duty to do the will of Joseph; and now it is the duty of us
          all to do the will of brother Brigham, for he reveals to us the
          will of God, which is his will. We will do his will as an Elder,
          as a Prophet, as an Apostle of Jesus Christ, holding the same
          keys that Peter of old held--the same that Joseph Smith held as
          an Apostle. You all believe this, don't you, without an
          exception? Well, if this is your faith--if this is your
          determination, I want you should manifest it by raising your
          right hands, and saying Aye.
          [A literal forest of hands was the result of this call, and the
          spacious hall trembled when a simultaneous "Aye" burst forth from
          the mouths of over two thousand persons.]
          There it is, and it cannot be any other way.
          I say to those who are elected to go on missions, Go, if you
          never return; and commit what you have into the hands of
          God--your wives, your children, your brethren, and your property.
          Let truth and righteousness be your motto; and do not go into the
          world for anything else but to preach the Gospel, build up the
          kingdom of God, and gather the sheep into the fold. You are sent
          out as shepherds to gather the sheep together; and remember that
          they are not your sheep: they belong to Him that sends you. Then
          do not make a choice of any of those sheep; do not make
          selections before they are brought home and put into the fold.
          You understand that. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / George
          Albert Smith, August 28, 1852
                        George Albert Smith, August 28, 1852
              Remarks by Elder George A. Smith at a Special Conference
           held in the Tabernacle, Great Salt Lake City, August 28, 1852.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          What has been said, brethren and sisters, is verily true. The
          kingdom of God has been built up by his distinguished blessings
          and the exertion and energy of those whom God has called to bear
          it off. When men refuse to fulfil their callings and magnify them
          in the proclamation of the fulness of the Gospel to the nations
          of the earth, they certainly lay the foundation for their own
          ruin. When men, on the other hand, become so puffed up in their
          own estimation as to think that the kingdom of God could not roll
          forth without their mighty exertions, they fall into
          transgression; they are fools in Israel, and their greatness will
          vanish like smoke.
          The fact is, God has planned for us the best sieve that could be
          imagined. He is determined to sift the nations with the sieve of
          vanity, and he has placed us here on the edge of the mountains,
          where a little shaking of the winds will cause everything without
          weight easily to slide off to the diggings; and in this way the
          work of sifting is going on daily, and hourly, and yearly, from
          time to time, according to the nature of the materials that
          happen to be thrown upon the sieve.
          No doubt many of us may be called upon, if not to-day, at some
          other time, to bear the message of the Gospel of salvation to the
          nations of the earth; for this was one of the commandments of the
          Prophet. He enjoined upon us that we preach the Gospel to all
          nations--that we should send forth the word to all people. This
          responsibility has been laid upon the Priesthood of the Church,
          and they are required to fulfil his commandment. There is not an
          Elder, a Priest, a Teacher, or a member of this Church but what
          bears a share of this responsibility.
          The missions we will call for during this Conference are
          generally not to be very long ones: probably from three to seven
          years will be as long as any man will be absent from his family.
          If any of the Elders refuse to go, they may expect that their
          wives will not live with them; for there is not a "Mormon" sister
          who would live with a man a day who would refuse to go on a
          mission. There is no other way for a man to save his family; and
          in order to save himself, he must fulfil his calling and magnify
          his Priesthood in proclaiming the fulness of the Gospel to the
          nations of the earth; and this certainly ought to be greatest joy
          to the family of any man who feels the importance of building up
          the kingdom--that he is actually considered worthy, in these last
          days, to be one of the number to go forth, as one of the horns of
          Joseph, to push the nations together, to gather out the honest in
          heart, to run for the prize which we all labour for.
          I feel deeply interested in these matters, and I hope and pray
          that every man who is called upon to go forth on missions to
          preach the Gospel may have the faith of the Church upon his head,
          and that they all may lift up their voices in faith before the
          people, that the light of truth may be a lamp in their path; and
          that, by their exertions and the blessings of God, it may be
          lighted up in distant nations.
          I recollect a little incident in history, that is told of William
          the Conqueror. After he had been king in England twenty years, he
          became very corpulent. In consequence of a little joke upon his
          corpulency by the French king, he declared war, and the
          declaration was made in these words:--"Tell my fair uncle I will
          pay him a visit, and I will bring along tapers enough to set all
          France on fire." You may suppose we are sending but a few
          Elders--probably not more than one hundred or one hundred and
          fifty; but we intend to continue the work, and send out Elders
          enough to set the world on fire, spiritually.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / John
          Taylor, August 28, 1852
                            John Taylor, August 28, 1852
                             CONDITION OF THE WORLD, &c.
                Remarks by Elder John Taylor at a Special Conference
           held in the Tabernacle, Great Salt Lake City, August 28, 1852.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          Brother George was talking about setting the world on fire. I
          think, when the Elders have travelled through the world as far as
          some of us have, and seen the rottenness and weakness of their
          institutions--the folly and corruption that everywhere prevail,
          they will find that it is pretty near time, as the Prophets have
          said, for it to be burned up, and all its works.
          But I suppose it is necessary, before the world is burned up,
          that the good wheat should be saved and gathered into the garner,
          and prepare to take a fresh start in peopling the earth and
          placing affairs upon a proper foundation.
          There is no person that reflects upon the condition of the world,
          as it now exists, but his heart must be pained--must be filled
          with sympathy for the inhabitants of the earth. I have gazed upon
          their proceedings myself; I have watched their follies,
          abominations, and corruptions; I have seen them. They seem to me
          to be regardless of God, heaven, hell, eternity, or anything
          else; and there are thousands, and tens of thousands, and
          millions of people upon the continent of Europe that would like
          no better employment than to go into deadly combat and destroy
          one another.
          The people talk about how corrupt we, the Latter-day Saints, are.
          If all they say about us be true, it is only a tithing of what
          you will find in the world. I have told them to look at home--to
          examine their own firesides, and they would find plenty of
          corruption and abomination. They are living without God in the
          world--without hope, and they are dying without hope;
          consequently, they are careless, profligate, and reckless.
          The Lord has shone upon us: he has lit up a candle of
          intelligence in our souls--has imparted to us the principles of
          eternal truth, opened the heavens, and sent his holy angel to put
          us in possession of principles that will exalt us in the scale of
          intelligence among men, and raise us up to be associates of the
          Gods in the eternal worlds.
          I know you have a desire to do these things; but I will tell you,
          there are many things that are calculated to try the feelings of
          Those who have to go out have to put their noses to the
          grindstone, and keep them there, and let them grind at it, and
          not murmur a word; and then, before they are healed, put them
          there again, and bear it all the time, and go along without
          saying anything; for you know it is a sin in the religions world
          to get angry. You need not attempt to without faith in God; and
          you will have need of all the wisdom and intelligence you can
          command. You cannot go and convert the world all at once; for it
          is too far sunken in folly and vice. This reminds me of a dream a
          brother had in France. He said he thought he was trying to kindle
          a fire on the sea-shore. Every time he attempted to light it, a
          wave came and rolled over it, and he could hardly accomplish it
          until the tide began to recede; and then he considered he would
          build up a fire when the wood got dry.
          You need not think of going abroad into the world, and going, as
          the Methodists sing, "on flowery beds of ease;" for a great many
          consider you as impostors, and as a general thing you are looked
          upon as suspicious characters, to say the least of it, and you
          will be closely watched. If you go to those foreign nations, your
          footsteps will be traced. No matter how privately you may make
          your entrance, or how privately you may take your departure, it
          will all be known to the police authorities, and they can give
          all the information required touching your movements.
          It was not more than ten minutes after I had taken the cab and
          started to the railway station to take my last departure from
          France, when one of the high police came to inquire after me. The
          gentleman with whom I stayed was a very affectionate friend to
          me, and he kept the police in conversation for two hours,
          speaking very highly of me. He told them I was a respectable,
          high-minded man, &c. The police told him of every place I had
          been at since I came to Paris; when I came to France; what hotel
          I stayed in; when I went to England, and how long I stayed there;
          when I went to Germany, and how long I stayed there; what books I
          had printed, &c., &c. He gave my friend a most minute account of
          every step I had taken; and all this is recorded in the books of
          the police. They have a congress of police among the nations of
          Europe, by which they can transmit information about every person
          who appears as a public character in any of those nations.
          This is the way you will be watched. If you go to any of these
          nations, it will be necessary for you to use the greatest wisdom
          and prudence, and that you should pray to God to guard you in all
          This police authority did not come after me until I had finished
          my work. I suppose they would not have injured me, for I had
          broken no law; but this is their policy. With it we have nothing
          to do; and I should recommend you strictly to obey all police
          regulations, and never interfere with any national, civil, or
          police institutions or regulations. I suppose they might have
          telegraphed after me, if they wished; but I took another
          course,--not, however, knowing that they were after me. I turned
          off the main route to go by a little seaport town, and I missed
          the whole concern, and was in France a week longer, and they knew
          nothing about me. I was out of their track, and came off safe.
          The Lord blessed me, and I have been blessed as much in these
          nations as anywhere else.
          You may talk about difficulties and what you have passed through
          here and there; but we should not be men, if we did not have
          difficulties to meet with; and we always feel much better when we
          have conquered them.
          This is the difference between us and the world. They meet with
          difficulties, and they quash down under them, while we ride over
          them and become victorious. This is the reason why there are so
          many institutions among the Gentiles that come to naught. They
          meet with difficulties and fall before them: we meet with the
          same, but we have a God at the helm, and we triumph over them.
          Another Elder and myself stayed in a hotel in a small town for
          about a week, and the landlord of which was an infidel. After we
          had been there two or three days, I told the landlord I was a
          religious man. He replied, "Oh, you are religious, are you?
          Religion is a pack of nonsense.?" I told him I cared as little
          about most of the religion of Christendom as he did; but the one
          I believed in, I told him, would benefit both body and soul, in
          time and eternity. I talked to him a little about it, and he
          began to feel much interested.
          I told him about the success and the prosperity that attended our
          works; and finally he said, "I don't know but I will sell out and
          go to America; for I am tired of France." I said, I will tell you
          where you will find a first-rate place to settle down in that
          country; and I directed him to Iowa. He spoke to an Elder that
          was with him after I had gone away, and said, "I don't like the
          way Mr. Taylor speaks to me." "Why?" said the Elder. "He speaks
          as though he wants to push me off on one side somewhere; and I
          want to go where he is. You have got the right religion; and had
          I found this, I should have been a religious man."
          I talked to another gentleman who came in, who was to be
          introduced to me,--a man of good education, and who talked the
          English language as well as I did. We talked about everything,
          almost, until religion came on in the conversation. When I was
          preparing to leave, the gentleman said, "Oh Mr. Taylor, I wish
          you would stay three or four days more here, and I will introduce
          you to a rich sugar manufacturer; and there is a gentleman living
          in a castle not far from here--I will introduce you to him." They
          felt as sorry at my going away as though I had stayed with them
          twelve months, and they came more than a mile to see me off and
          bid me good bye, and prayed God to bless me before I left.
          You will see many such things as these. I could have introduced
          the Gospel in the whole of that country, and I had time. You will
          find that the Spirit of the Lord will go before you and prepare
          the way. I had men come to me and say, "God bless you!--you are
          the man I dreamed about." That is the kind of feeling that
          operates upon the people in those parts, as well as in the other
          parts of the world. The Spirit of the Lord goes before his
          I recollect associating with some medical professors--American
          gentlemen, who had come to Paris for the purpose of attending
          medical lectures, &c., at l' Ecole de Medicine, and visiting the
          hospitals; and though we were "Mormons," they were glad to have
          our society, and seemed to feel a desire to associate with us. We
          talked "Mormonism" to them, and many other things.
          These men came there, remained two or three months, and went
          away. Nobody cared anything about them, only just as much as they
          paid their way, and that was all. We went there and planted the
          Gospel in the hearts of the people; and they feel as all other
          people do who are members of this Church. The Spirit of God was
          with them, and we could rejoice in the bosom of our friends and
          talk of the things of God and the blessings he gives to his
          people. I looked at these doctors, and I said to myself, You poor
          miserable creatures!--you wander round the world without the
          Spirit and blessings of God, and nobody cares for you, whether
          you live or die, when we come here to plant the standard of truth
          in the hearts of the people, and can rejoice with them in its
          If any of you go into those countries, you will find as
          warmhearted people as you will find anywhere else. Brothers F. D.
          Richard and E. Snow can bear testimony to this. The Gospel has
          the same effect in their hearts as it has in yours. I won't
          occupy your time further. May God bless you, in the name of
          Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 6 / Ezra T.
          Benson, August 28, 1852
                           Ezra T. Benson, August 28, 1852
               Remarks by Elder Ezra T. Benson at a Special Conference
           held in the Tabernacle, Great Salt Lake City, August 28, 1852.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          I feel thankful for the privilege to occupy a few moments a this
          conference, and to give my testimony concerning the work of the
          Lord in these last days.
          I feel thankful that we are here, and that we are blessed with
          the Spirit of truth, which is one of the greatest blessings in
          the kingdom of God. When we have the Spirit of truth dwelling in
          our hearts, we are ready, and not only ready but willing to do
          the things that are required at our hands.
          We have been hearing this morning that there are many that will
          be called to go to the nations of the earth. I feel that I can
          say that there is not an individual that will be called upon, if
          he has the Spirit of the Lord or of "Mormonism" in his heart, but
          what will respond to the call with all his soul. He will feel to
          thank God and his brethren that he is worthy to be called with
          such a high and holy calling as to be a messenger of salvation;
          for I do actually know, by experience, that there is not calling
          under the heavens, among the children of men, that is so
          desirable and so great as to go and preach this Gospel.
          If a man will magnify his Priesthood, he can do more in one hour
          in the vineyard, preaching the Gospel and gathering the Saints in
          one, if he is sent to do so, than he can do here in ten,
          labouring with his hands for himself, for his family, and for the
          kingdom of God on the earth; for it is impossible for us to
          retain the Spirit of God--it is impossible for us to love the
          Lord, or ever keep in good fellowship with this people, unless we
          do as we are told. Inasmuch as there are honest people in the
          earth, scattered among the nations, is it pleasing in the sight
          of God for us to sit down here (unless we are commanded to do
          so,) and refuse to give them the truth? It is perfectly right to
          tarry here and prepare for the Saints who are gathering, unless
          we are commanded otherwise.
          I wish to say a few words to those who shall be called upon to go
          to the nations. The time is now--I feel persuaded of it--for us,
          Elders of Israel, to work while the day lasts--to work while
          there is time and opportunity, while God is softening the hearts
          of the people. Now is the time for the Elders to visit the