Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11
                               Journal of Discourses,
                                      Volume 11
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / George
          Albert Smith, November 15, 1864
                       George Albert Smith, November 15, 1864
                                HISTORICAL DISCOURSE.
            Delivered by Elder George A. Smith, in the Tabernacle, Ogden
                           on Tuesday, November 15, 1864.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          When the Lord appeared to Joseph Smith and manifested unto him a
          knowledge pertaining to the coming forth of the Book of Mormon
          and the work of the last days, Satan came also with his power and
          tempted Joseph. It is written in the book of Job, "Now there was
          a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the
          Lord, and Satan came also among them." In the very commencement
          of this Work, the Prophet Joseph Smith was called upon to contend
          face to face with the powers of darkness by spiritual
          manifestations, and open visions, as well as with men in the
          flesh, stirred up by the same spirit of the adversary to edge up
          his way and destroy him from the earth, and annihilate the work
          which he was about to commence. He thus describes the incident: 
          "In the spring of 1820, after I had retired into the place where
          I had previously designed to go, having looked around me, and
          finding myself alone, I kneeled down and began to offer up the
          desires of my heart to God. I had scarcely done so, when
          immediately I was seized upon by some power, which entirely
          overcame me, and had such astonishing influence over me as to
          bind my tongue so that I could not speak. Thick darkness gathered
          around me, and it seemed to me for a time as if I were doomed to
          sudden destruction. But--exerting all my powers to call upon God
          to deliver me out of the power of this enemy which had seized
          upon me, and at the very moment when I was ready to sink into
          despair and abandon myself to destruction, not to an imaginary
          ruin, but to the power of some actual being from the unseen
          world, who had such a marvellous power as I had never before felt
          in any being--just at this moment of great alarm, I saw a pillar
          of light exactly over my head, above the brightness of the sun,
          which descended gradually until it fell upon me. It no sooner
          appeared than I found myself delivered from the enemy which held
          me bound. When the light rested upon me I saw two personages,
          whose brightness and glory defy all description, standing above
          me in air. One of them spake unto me, calling me by name, and
          said, pointing to the other--'This is my beloved son, hear him.'"
          It was also peculiar in the history of the age, that just at the
          time that God was revealing unto his servant Joseph to raise up
          men to bear testimony of the principles of the Gospel in its
          fulness and simplicity, Satan was at work stirring up the hearts
          of the children of men to a species of religious excitement.
          There were in many parts of the country strange manifestations,
          great camp and other protracted meetings were assembled together
          to worship under the various orders denominated Methodists,
          Campbelites, Presbyterians, Baptists, Unitarians, etc., among
          whom were manifested the development of a spirit which deprived
          men of their strength; they would faint away, or, they would
          manifest a variety of contortions of countenance. There was
          introduced into the Western States a phenomenon called the jerks;
          persons under the influence of religious fanaticism would jerk
          seemingly enough to tear them to pieces.
          When the Church was organized, persons came into it bringing
          along some of these enthusiastic notions, individuals who
          professed to have revelations on every subject, and who were
          ready to banish every moral principle under the guidance of false
          spirits. Joseph the Prophet had also to learn by experience, and
          to teach the Elders and the early members of the Church, how they
          should judge of the manifestation of spirits. (Book of Doctrine
          and Covenants, Sec. 17, Par. 7.)
                    "Wherefore it shall come to pass, that if you behold a
                    spirit manifested that you cannot understand, and you
                    receive not that spirit, ye shall ask of the Father in
                    the name of Jesus, and if he give not unto you that
                    spirit, that you may know that it is not of God: and it
                    shall be given unto you power over that spirit, and you
                    shall proclaim against that spirit with a loud voice,
                    that it is not of God; not with railing accusation,
                    that ye be not overcome; neither with boasting, nor
                    rejoicing, lest you be seized therewith," and refers to
                    Hiram Page who began to get revelations through the
                    medium of a black stone, certain characters appearing
                    on that stone which he wrote down.
                         Notes concerning false revelations,
          Joseph Smith in his history wrote thus:
                           "To our great grief, however, we soon found that
                    Satan had been lying in wait to deceive, and seeking
                    whom he might devour. Brother Hyrum Page had got in his
                    possession a certain stone, by which he had obtained
                    revelations concerning the upbuilding of Zion, the
                    order of the Church, &c., &c., all of which were
                    entirely at variance with the order of God's house, as
                    laid down in the New Testament, as well as our late
                    revelations. As a Conference had been appointed for the
                    first day of September, I thought it wisdom not to do
                    much more than to converse with the brethren on the
                    subject, until the Conference should meet. Finding,
                    however, that many, especially the Whitmer family and
                    Oliver Cowdery, were believing much in the things set
                    forth by this stone, we thought best to inquire of the
                    Lord concerning so important a matter; and before
                    Conference convened, we received the revelation to
                    Oliver Cowdery given at Fayette, New York, September,
                    1830, in the paragraph of which the Lord says: "And
                    again, thou shalt take thy brother, Hyrum Page, between
                    him and thee alone, and tell him that those things
                    which he hath written from that stone are not of me,
                    and that Satan Deceived him; for, behold, these things
                    have not been appointed unto him, neither shall
                    anything be appointed unto any of this Church contrary
                    to the Church covenants, for all things must be done in
                    order, and by common consent in the Church, by the
                    prayer of faith."
          Joseph's history continues:
                    "At length our Conference assembled. The subject of the
                    stone previously mentioned, was discussed, and after
                    considerable investigation, brother Page, as well as
                    the whole Church who were present, renounced the said
                    stone, and all things connected therewith, much to our
                    mutual satisfaction and happiness."
          Some of the Elders journeyed to the westward from the state of
          New York, and built up Branches in the State of Ohio. Elders
          Oliver Cowdery and P. P. Pratt visited Sidney Rigdon who resided
          in Mentor, Geauga county, and was famous in that country as a
          reformed Baptist minister, more familiarly known as Campbelites.
          He had preached the doctrine of baptism for the remission of
          sins, the regular Baptist church having a different view of the
          subject, for they considered "baptism as an outward sign of an
          inward grace," and that in order to be a candidate for baptism he
          must have received a change of heart, changed from a heart of
          stone to one of flesh; he was required to go into the
          congregation and formally renounce the world, the flesh and the
          devil, having given evidence that he was a new creature and was
          prepared for baptism. But the Reformed Baptists held the doctrine
          which I believe was first preached in Ohio, by Sidney Rigdon,
          that a man must reform, that repentance was simply a reformation,
          and the moment that repentance was resolved upon, the candidate
          was ready for baptism; and so far their notion appeared to be an
          improvement upon the general idea entertained, and consonant with
          the Bible view of it, as it was laid down by the Savior and his
          Apostles. But here they stopped, and did not administer the
          laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost, and what was
          further, they contended there was no need of it, that it was all
          done away, and that the written word was all the spirit there
          When the Elders waited on Sidney Rigdon and presented to him the
          Book of Mormon, teaching him the principle of laying on of hands
          for the reception of the Holy Ghost, he received it, as did
          several hundred members of his church, and members of other
          churches in that vicinity, who were baptized in a few weeks. In a
          few days Elders Oliver Cowdery, P. P. Pratt and Ziba Patterson,
          passed on westward, as their mission directed them to the western
          boundaries of the State of Missouri. Sidney Rigdon took a journey
          to the east, as did Edward Partridge for the purpose of visiting
          the Prophet, and these strange spirits of which we have already
          spoken, began to manifest themselves in the churches and Branches
          which had been built up.
          There was at this time in Kirtland, a society that had undertaken
          to have a community of property; it has sometimes been
          denominated the Morley family, as there was a number of them
          located on a farm owned by Captain Isaac Morley. These persons
          had been baptized, but had not yet been instructed in relation to
          their duties. A false spirit entered into them, developing their
          singular, extravagant and wild ideas. They had a meeting at the
          farm, and among them was a negro known generally as Black Pete,
          who became a revelator. Others also manifested wonderful
          developments; they could see angels, and letters would come down
          from heaven, they said, and they would be put through wonderful
          unnatural distortions. Finally on one occasion, Black Pete got
          sight of one of those revelations carried by a black angel, he
          started after it, and ran off a steep wash bank twenty-five feet
          high, passed through a tree top into the Chagrin river beneath.
          He came out with a few scratches, and his ardor somewhat cooled.
          Joseph Smith came to Kirtland, and taught that people in relation
          to their error. He showed them that the Spirit of God did not
          bind men nor make them insane, and that the power of the
          adversary which had been manifested in many instances was visible
          even from that cause, for persons under its influence became
          helpless, and were bound hand and foot as in chains, being as
          immovable as a stick of timber. When Joseph came to instruct
          these Saints in relation to the true Spirit, and the manner of
          determining the one from the other, in a short time a number of
          those who had been influenced by those foul manifestations,
          apostatized. Among the number was Wycom Clark; he got a
          revelation that he was to be the prophet--that he was the true
          revelator; and himself, Northrop Sweet and four other individuals
          retired from the Church, and organized the "Pure Church of
          Christ," as they called it, composed of six members, and
          commenced having meetings, and preaching, but that was the extent
          of the growth of his early schism. John Noah, another of this
          class, assumed to be a prophet, and in consequence thereof was
          expelled from the church.
          Among the early baptisms in Northern Ohio, was a Methodist
          minister by the name of Ezra Booth. He was present when the
          Elders first received the ordination of the High Priesthood. They
          met together in June, 1831, in a log school house in Kirtland, a
          room about eighteen feet by twenty. While they were there, the
          manifestation of the power of God being on Joseph, he set apart
          some of the Elders to the High Priesthood. Ezra Booth was bound,
          and his countenance was distorted, and numbers of the brethren
          looked at him, and thought it was a wonderful manifestation of
          the power of God, but to their astonishment, Joseph came forward
          and rebuked the foul spirit, and commanded it to depart, in
          consequence of which Booth was relieved, and many of the brethren
          were greatly tried at such a singular treatment by the prophet of
          these wonderful manifestations of power.
          Other had visions. Lyman Wight bore testimony that he saw the
          face of the Savior.
          The Priesthood was conferred on a number of Elders, and thirty
          were selected to take a mission to the western boundaries of
          Missouri, and travel and preach two and two by the way,
          travelling without purse or scrip. They did so, building up
          churches. Joseph was required to travel by water, or at a more
          rapid rate to reach there, to meet the brethren and hold a
          Conference in the land of Zion. It was only a short time after
          the return from this mission, that Ezra Booth apostatized as did
          Jacob Scott, Symons Rider, Eli Johnson and a number of others.
          The spirit of apostacy was little known, but when these men
          apostatized they became more violent, more cruel, and manifested
          a greater spirit of persecution than any other enemies. What
          seemed singular, Ezra Booth had been brought into the Church
          through the manifestation of a miracle. The wife of father John
          Johnson had been afflicted with the rheumatism, so as to be
          unable to raise her arm and hand for two years. Her husband had
          believed the work, and she also was believing. She went to Joseph
          Smith the Prophet to have him administer to her, Booth
          accompanied them, for he was well acquainted with the family, and
          the condition of Mrs. Johnson. When the Elders laid their hands
          upon her, she was instantly healed, so that she could use her arm
          and hand as well as ever she could previously. Booth knew this to
          be an instantaneous cure, and soon after witnessing this miracle,
          he was baptized, and ordained an Elder. He having formerly been a
          Methodist minister, commenced preaching the Gospel without purse
          or scrip, and he did so until he found, (using a common
          expression,) it did not pay. Under these circumstances he
          apostatized. While he was in apostacy he searched his cranium for
          some means to justify himself and published a series of lying
          letters in the Ohio Star, a paper printed in Revenna. These nine
          letters had been republished several times as evidence against
          "Mormonism;" and his apostacy culminated in collecting a mob who
          tarred and feathered Joseph Smith, and inflicted upon his family
          the loss of one of its number at Hyrum, Portage county, Ohio.
          Joseph Smith was occupying the room of a house brother Johnson
          was living in, at the same time; it was a two story building, had
          steps in front. The mob surrounded the house, the twins being
          afflicted with measles, Joseph was lying upon a trundle bed with
          one of them. The mob rushed in, gathered up Joseph while in his
          bed, took him out in his night clothes, and carried him out on to
          the top of the steps. Joseph got a foot at liberty and kicked one
          of the men, and knocked him down off the steps, and the print of
          his head and shoulders were visible on the ground in the morning.
          Warren Waste, who was the strongest man in the western reserve
          considered himself perfectly able to handle Joseph alone, but
          when they got hold of him Waste cried out, "do not let him touch
          the ground, or he will run over the whole of us." Waste suggested
          in carrying him to cross his legs, for they said that would make
          it easier for the Prophet, but that was done in consequence of
          the severe pain it would give to the small of the back. He was
          daubed with tar, feathered and choked, and aqua fortis poured
          into his mouth. Dr. Dennison had been employed to perform a
          surgical operation, but he declined when the time came to
          operate. The liquid they poured into his mouth was so powerful,
          that it killed the grass where some of it had been scattered on
          the ground. Joseph is reported by the mob to have said, be
          merciful, when they told him to call upon his God for mercy. They
          immediately, as he began to pray, heard an alarm which made them
          think they were about to be surprised, and left suddenly. Sidney
          Rigdon, who resided near by, had been dragged by the heels out of
          his bed at the same time, and his body stripped and a coat of tar
          and feathers applied. The next morning he was crazy, his head
          greatly inflamed and lacerated. Joseph found his way in from the
          light of the house, the mob having abandoned him. While he was
          engaged in getting off the tar by the application of grease, soap
          and other materials, Philemon Duzette, the father of our
          celebrated drummer, came there, and seeing the Prophet in this
          condition, took it as an evidence of the truth of "Mormonism,"
          and was baptized. These circumstances exposed the life of the
          child, the measles struck in and caused its death, and the whole
          of this persecution was got up through the influence of those
          apostates; and it made it necessary to keep up a constant watch
          lest some violence should be repeated. Luke Johnson informed us
          that Warren Waste was afterwards a cripple, rendered so by
          weakness in the small of the back, and Dr. Dennison died in the
          Ohio Penitentiary where he was incarcerated for procuring an
          abortion, which caused death; Joseph soon after located in
          Kirtland. In Kirtland there were manifestations of evil spirits
          in high places, which might have been considered more dangerous
          than the manifestations in the early establishment of the Church.
          Sidney Rigdon, on one occasion got up to preach, and commenced by
          saying that the Church and kingdom was rent from them and given
          to another people. Joseph was absent, when he came home he found
          Sidney almost like a mad man. He labored with him and with the
          Church, and finally succeeded in convincing him that he was under
          the influence of a false spirit. A man from the State of New York
          by the name of Hawley, stated that while he was working in his
          field, barefoot, the word of the Lord came to him, saying that he
          should start on the instant, and not stop to put on his shoes. He
          came six hundred miles to Kirtland, and went to Joseph with the
          message that he had suffered John Noah, a prophet of God, to be
          cut off from the Church, and that consequently he had lost his
          office; and he had also suffered the women to wear caps, and the
          men he allowed to wear cushions on their shoulders, and for these
          heinous sins he was cut off, and this man had come six hundred
          miles barefooted to bear the terrible message. You might suppose
          such an adventurer coming among us would be regarded as a madman
          by all, but at that time several men were ready to listen to him;
          a Bishop's Council was assembled and an investigation had. During
          the investigation, the subject of women wearing caps and veils
          and having their heads covered was canvassed, and the Bible
          ransacked by Oliver Cowdery and others. When the man was expelled
          from the Church for giving way to the power of false spirits, he
          rose up in a most solemn manner, and proclaimed to the Council
          that they had chosen darkness instead of light. This man went
          through the streets of Kirtland in the night crying in a most
          doleful voice, woe, woe to this people. I understand that brother
          Brigham, hearing this nonsense and noise in the street, jumped up
          out of his bed in the night, took with him a cow hide whip into
          the street, and told that noise person if he did not stop his
          noise he would certainly cowhide him, which caused him to cease
          to annoy the inhabitants with his folly.
          Another prophet arose by the name of Hoton, he had his head
          quarters at the forge in Kirtland. He was the president, and a
          man named Montague was appointed Bishop. They resolved to live
          precisely in accordance with the principles, as they understood
          them, spoken of soon after the day of Pentecost, for they had all
          things common. Their number increased to ten, and they called
          themselves "the independent Church." Persons who had apostatized
          from the Latter-day Saints could be admitted into their party
          upon the terms of entering the room, shaking hands with every
          member and consecrating their property. This church lasted some
          two or three months, when a difficulty occurred between the
          President and the Bishop. The Bishop accused the President of
          being too familiar with his meat barrel; the President, in turn,
          accused the Bishop of being too intimate with his sheets. The
          result was, a split took place between the two chief authorities,
          and the organization ceased to exist.
          There was a prevalent spirit all through the early history of
          this Church, which prompted the Elders to suppose that they knew
          more than the Prophet. Elders would tell you that the prophet was
          going wrong, men who thought they knew all about this work thirty
          or forty years some of them before the Lord revealed it, tried
          "to steady the ark." The Church was constantly afflicted with
          such a class of men.
          I remember well in Zion's Camp, Levi W. Hancock made a fife, from
          a joint of sweet elder, Sylvester Smith marched his company to
          the music of that fife. That fife may be considered almost the
          introduction of martial music among the "mormons." A dog came out
          and barked, when Sylvester Smith was going to kill the dog.
          Joseph said he was a good watch dog, Sylvester became wrathy and
          threatened; finally Joseph reproved him sharply, showing him that
          such a spirit would not conquer or control the human family, that
          he must get rid of it, and predicted that if he did not get rid
          of it, the day would come when a dog would gnaw his flesh, and he
          not have the power to resist it. Some months after the return to
          Kirtland, Sylvester Smith preferred a charge against Joseph the
          Prophet, for having prophecied lies in the name of the Lord, and
          undertook to substantiate that charge on the ground that the
          Prophet had said a dog should bite him, if he did not get rid of
          that spirit, when he had not power to resist. They were three
          days and parts of nights, with the High Council in Kirtland, in
          investigating this charge; one person spoke three hours in behalf
          of the Prophet. Sylvester published a confession which can be
          seen in the Church History, acknowledging his fault.
          The Church in Kirtland were few in number compared with the
          inhabitants of the city of Ogden. We had High Council upon High
          Council, Bishop's trial upon Bishop's trial; and labor and toil
          constantly to settle difficulties and get our minds instructed in
          principle and doctrine, and in the power that we had to contend
          with. I remember very well the organization of the High Council
          at Kirtland as a permanent institution, there had been several
          Councils of twelve High Priests called for special cases, but
          they organized it permanently on 17th Fe. 1834. On the 19th, the
          first case that was brought up was that of Elder Curtis Hodge,
          sen., who while speaking in meeting had gone into a Methodist
          spasm, shouting and screaming in such a manner as caused one of
          the Elders to rebuke him. Brother Hodge was brought before the
          Council for so doing. A great deal of instruction was imparted to
          the people, who were assembled in a room sixteen feet by
          eighteen. The decision was, that the charges in the declaration
          had been fairly sustained by good witnesses, that Elder Hodge
          ought to have confessed when rebuked by Elder Ezra Thayer; also
          if he had the spirit of the Lord at the meetings where he
          hallowed, he must have abused it and grieved it away, and all the
          Council agreed with the decision. The report of this case is in
          Millennial Star, Vol. 15, page 18, and well worthy of perusal.
          In relation to the manifestation of the spirit and a man
          exercising it, he may be guilty of error of manner as well as
          error in matter, and these principles in this way were gradually
          introduced into the minds of the brethren, the Elders being
          instructed all the while now and then, when falling out by the
          way-side. The first Council I ever attended where the Prophet was
          present was at the trial of Doctor P. Hurlburt. This occurred in
          June, 1833. He had been cut off from the Church by the Bishop's
          Council, and a Council of Twelve High Priests, was organized to
          try the case on appeal. Hurlburt did not deny the charge, but
          begged to be forgiven, made every promise that a man could make
          that he would from that day live a virtuous life. Finally the
          Council accepted of his confession, and agreed that he might on
          public confession be restored to the Church again.
          It was at the same Council that Daniel Copley, a timid young man,
          who had been ordained a Priest, and required to go and preach the
          Gospel, was called to an account for not going on his mission.
          The young man said he was too weak to attempt to preach, and the
          Council cut him off the Church. I wonder what our missionaries
          now would think of so rigid a discipline as was given at that
          time thirty one years ago, under the immediate supervision of the
          As soon as this Council had made this decision upon Hurlburt,
          Joseph arose, and said to the Council, he is not honest, and what
          he has promised he will not fulfil; what he has confessed are not
          the thoughts and intents of his heart, and time will prove it.
          Hurlburt stated to the Branch in Thompson, Ohio, that he had
          deceived Joseph Smith's God or the spirit by which he is
          actuated, I have proved that Council has no wisdom, I told them I
          was sorry I confessed and they believed it to be an honest
          confession, I deceived the whole of them and made them restore me
          to the Church. Hurlburt was the author of that work known by the
          name of "Mormonism Unveiled." Booth's letters were reprinted by
          Hurlburt, who is the author of "The Spaulding Story," a book
          which he intended to publish; and in delivering lectures he had
          said he would wash his hands in Joseph Smith's blood. He was
          taken before the court and required to give bonds to keep the
          peace towards all men, and especially towards Joseph Smith. These
          circumstances had some influence, and his fiends arranged that he
          should not publish the book, but put it into the hands of E. D.
          Howe, who resided in Painsville, Ohio. He agreed that he would
          give Hurlburt four hundred copies of the first printed and bound,
          for the manuscript. Hurlburt went round and got subscribers, to
          pay him when the book should be delivered, one dollar each for
          the four hundred. Howe got the books printed and refused to
          furnish Hurlburt with his share, until by a piece of legerdemain
          he got hold of his subscription list and got the four hundred
          dollars, and then he let him have the books. When Hurlburt went
          to supply his subscribers he found they had already been served.
          The Spaulding story in that country was considered so ridiculous,
          that the books could with difficulty be sold at any price; but it
          has now found its way into the scientific journals of the great
          world as a true history of the origin of the Book of Mormon, when
          it is very well known that no statement on this earth could be
          more incorrect or more untrue. Let "Mormonism" be true or false,
          the Spaulding story from beginning to end is an unmitigated
          falsehood. Solomon Spaulding was a Presbyterian minister; he
          entered into the iron trade in Conneaut, Ohio, but failing in
          business he took a notion to write a novel; he wrote a book
          called the Manuscript Found, he took his work to Pittsburg, to a
          man by the name of Patterson to get it printed, but he failed and
          never printed it. It was pretended that it fell into the hands of
          Sidney Rigdon, and that he converted it into the Book of Mormon,
          and induced Joseph Smith to publish it; whereas it is very well
          known that there had no connection ever existed between these
          parties. In the first place, Spaulding never wrote any such work;
          in the next place, Spaulding never had anything to do with
          Patterson, and Sidney Rigdon and him were perfect strangers to
          each other. The first knowledge that Sidney Rigdon had of Joseph
          Smith was when Parley P. Pratt met him in Ohio, and presented him
          a printed copy of the Book of Mormon; yet all this has found its
          way into scientific literature, and you will find it even in the
          North British Review. Hurlburt's failure to destroy "Mormonism"
          was so complete, understanding that he was backed by influential
          men in Mentor and vicinity, that it ended in their disgrace and
          discomfiture, and this was so complete, that the story in that
          country was hardly ever spoken of afterwards. Yet the Spaulding
          story lives among those who make lies their refuge, and under
          falsehood hide themselves.
          The word of the Lord given in September 1831--see Book of
          Covenants, Sec. 21, Par. 4--to make Kirtland a strong hold for
          the space of five years, gave rise to a new development in the
          feelings and sentiments of the Saints. The Prophet said, purchase
          lands in the vicinity of Kirtland; men were induced to buy farms,
          and to go to work and build houses, to quarry rock, and haul them
          on the ground, to build a Temple. We were not then supplied with
          reporters and clerks as we are now, and many of the books that
          were kept have been wrested from the hands of the Church by
          apostates. The foundation of the Kirtland Temple was laid in
          1833, and there is scarcely a scrap of history relating to it to
          be found, not even the names of the twenty-four Elders in their
          order who laid the foundation of it. When the Temple was
          completed there was a great manifestation of power. The brethren
          gathered together to its dedication. We considered it a very
          large building. Some nine hundred and sixty could be seated, and
          there would be room for a few to stand, the congregation was
          swelled to a little over a thousand persons at the time of the
          dedication. It was a trial of faith. The Elders from every part
          of the country had come together. The finishing of the Temple had
          involved a debt of many thousands, and we all came together to
          the dedication. The congregation was so large that we could not
          all get in; and when the house was full, then, of course, the
          doors were closed, and no more admitted. This caused Elder
          Frazier Eaton, who had paid seven hundred dollars towards
          building the house, to apostatize, because he did not get there
          early enough to the meeting. When the dedication prayer was read
          by Joseph, it was read from a printed copy. This was a great
          trial of faith to many. "How can it be that the prophet should
          read a prayer?" What an awful trial it was, for the Prophet to
          read a prayer! The service of the dedication being over, it was
          repeated again on the next day, to accommodate those who had not
          been able to get in on the first day, and all those who had been
          there on the first day, excepting the authorities, being required
          to remain outside, till those who could not get in the day before
          were seated; the result of this arrangement was two days
          The question has often arisen among us, why it is that we do not
          see more angels, have more visions, that we do not see greater
          and more manifestations of power. Any of the brethren that were
          there could have herd testimonies of manifestations in abundance.
          On the first day of the dedication, President Frederick G.
          Williams, one of the Council of the Prophet, and who occupied the
          upper pulpit, bore testimony that the Savior, dressed in his
          vesture without seam, came into the stand and accepted of the
          dedication of the house, that he saw him, and gave a description
          of his clothing and all things pertaining to it. That evening
          there was a collection of Elders, Priests, Teachers and Deacons,
          etc., amounting to four hundred and sixteen, gathered in the
          house; there were great manifestations of power, such as speaking
          in tongues, seeing visions, administration of angels. Many
          individuals bore testimony that they saw angels, and David
          Whitmer bore testimony that he saw three angels passing up the
          south aisle, and there came a shock on the house like the sound
          of a mighty rushing wind, and almost every man in the house
          arose, and hundreds of them were speaking in tongues, prophecying
          or declaring visions, almost with one voice.
          The question arises, where are those men? a number of them who
          manifested the greatest gifts, and had the greatest
          manifestations have fallen out by the way side, you look around
          among us and they are not here. Many who received the knowledge
          of the things of God by the power of his spirit, and sought not
          after signs and wonders, and when the spirit rested upon them
          seemed to produce no visible demonstration, you look around among
          the Saints in the valleys of the mountains, and you find they are
          here with us bearing on high the standard of Zion, or have
          descended into honorable graves. But where you find men who have
          turned away, and have got terribly afflicted with self conceit,
          you will find those, who, on that occasion and similar occasions,
          received great and powerful manifestations, and when the spirit
          came on them it seemed to distort the countenance, and caused
          them to make tremendous efforts in some instances. Sylvester
          Smith bore testimony of seeing the hosts of heaven and the
          horsemen. In his exertion and excitement it seemed as though he
          would jump through the ceiling.
          Brother Cannon in speaking on the subject this morning referred
          to the old adage, soon ripe, soon rotten. God has laid the
          foundation of his kingdom never to be destroyed, and it appears
          wisdom in him to develop gradually power and glory and strength.
          I have always heard it suggested that as the spirit of
          "Mormonism" gathered together the seed of Abraham--mostly the
          sons of Abraham that are mixed among the nations; that the Holy
          Spirit falling upon men, who are not of the pure blood, who had
          the predominance of other blood in their veins, that the
          manifestation is greater, and when great manifestations fall on
          men, great trials immediately follow.
          I have been conversant with early Elders, and I am satisfied that
          a large number of them fell from their positions in the kingdom
          of God because they yielded to the spirit of adultery; this was
          the cause of their destruction. There was an Elder named John
          Smith who lived in Indiana, who was quite popular in that part of
          the country as a preacher. He apostatized, but he did not know
          it. In talking about his faith and how firm it was, he said, I
          have proven the revelation given to Joseph Smith untrue, which
          says if a man shall commit adultery he shall lose the spirit of
          God, and deny the faith. I have proven that not to be true, for I
          have violated that commandment and have not denied the faith. He
          was so blind that he could not see through the darkness that the
          spirit of adultery had placed upon his head, the great apostacy
          which seemed to shake the Church, and tried men's souls.
          Some time after the finishing of the Temple, the brethren under
          the direction of the Prophet had established a bank in Kirtland,
          the paper to be redeemed by specie, and secured by real estate.
          The directors of that bank were members of the Church, and they
          were determined to sustain the credit of that money. The question
          has some times been asked, how much has that bank failed for; it
          did not fail for a single dollar, and yet when it failed there
          was perhaps a hundred thousand dollars of the bank paper out in
          circulation. Warren Parrish was the teller of the bank, and a
          number of other men who apostatized were officers. They took out
          of its vault, unknown to the President or cashier, a hundred
          thousand dollars, and sent their agents around among the brethren
          to purchase their farms, wagons, cattle, horses and every thing
          they could get hold of. The brethren would gather up this money
          and put it into the bank, and those traitors would steal it and
          send it out to buy again, and they continued to do so until the
          plot was discovered and payment stopped. It was the cursed
          apostates--their stealing and robberies, and their infernal
          villainies that prevented that bank being conducted as the
          Prophet designed. If they had followed the counsel of Joseph,
          there is not a doubt but that it would have been the leading bank
          in Ohio, probably of the nation. It was founded upon safe
          principles, and would have been a safe and lasting institution.
          Parrish and his coadjutors professed to have discovered that
          Joseph was not a Prophet, and commenced making a noise about it,
          and went so far as to organize about thirty of the Elders, into a
          new church called the Parrish party, many of them had been a long
          time in the church. That may be considered the time that tried
          men's souls; for a man that would stand up in the streets and say
          he was Joseph's friend, could not get a greater compliment than
          being called a lick skillet. Joseph had few friends; but among
          the leading Elders of the Church, in Kirtland the High Council,
          one of the members of the first Presidency, some of the seven
          Presidents of the seventies, and a great many others were so
          darkened that they went astray in every direction. They boasted
          of the talent at their command, and what they would do. Their
          plan was to take the doctrines of the Church, such as repentance,
          baptism for the remission of sins, throw aside the Book of
          Mormon, the Prophet and Priesthood, and go and unite the whole
          Christian world under these doctrines. Where are they to-day?
          Like a rope of sand that has vanished to the four winds of
          heaven. Many of them have already in dust and ashes lamented
          their fate, they have never been able to prosper in any business,
          or take a leading part in any capacity. This is the result of
          that apostacy; and yet it was so great that Joseph himself and
          his friends had to flee from Kirtland. There was a council there
          when President Young, Brother Brigham as we called him, spoke in
          favor of Joseph, and Jacob Bump who had been a long time a
          Pugilist before he came into the Church, said "how on earth can I
          keep my hands off this man," Brigham said, lay them on if it will
          do you any good. The voice seemingly of an individual, was
          absolutely necessary to say that Joseph had a single friend. You
          look at times of danger, moral and physical, and you will find
          that the spirit of determination and strong will in the breast of
          a single man may save a most terrible panic and disaster. By
          management it was proved that Joseph had friends, and when he had
          gone to the state of Missouri, having fled from Kirtland, he was
          met with coldness by men who were in authority there. All this
          was the result of apostacy. The public funds were held in their
          own name, and another battle had there to be fought, not perhaps
          as severe, but at the same time there was a constant pressure
          seemed to be necessary to give strength to the growing kingdom;
          yet the revelations were that the kingdom should continue to
          prevail. The very fact of the promise of its continuing to
          prevail, signifies that it should have something more or less
          severe to prevail against. God has been with this people and has
          guided them, and dictated them, and is continuing to do so up to
          the present moment, and will continue so to do until the kingdoms
          of this world become the kingdoms of our Lord and his Christ. May
          we be prepared to fulfil our share in this great work, is my
          prayer in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 /
          Brigham Young, December 11, 1864
                          Brigham Young, December 11, 1864
                           TO MERCHANTS, SPECULATORS, &c.
          Remarks by President Brigham Young, delivered in the Tabernacle,
                     Salt Lake City, Sunday, December 11, 1864.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          We are so organized that we can learn but little at a time, and
          the little we do learn should be that kind of knowledge which
          will bring to us as individuals and as a community, temporal and
          eternal salvation. If men were to live until the number of their
          days should be one hundred years, they still would be but
          children in the knowledge of this life, and would only be
          commencing to learn the things which pertain to their temporal
          life, health and comfort, and how to live hereafter. Very few of
          the inhabitants of the earth have the time and priviledge of
          making themselves comfortable in a temporal point of view, before
          they are called to return to their mother earth.
          We have had excellent instructions to-day. They have been
          edifying, comforting and strengthening to the Saints. I will take
          the liberty of referring to a few things the brethren have dwelt
          upon in their remarks. In relation to the contest between Jesus
          and the power of Satan that is upon the earth, brother George Q.
          Cannon has said he is ready to commence the contest anew to-day
          against sin, and the effects of it which have often tried to
          overthrow us as a people. I have been engaged in a contest
          against the devil and his rule, for the last thirty three years
          this present winter. It is that many years since I took the Book
          of Mormon, and went into His Brittanic Majesty's realms to teach
          the Gospel of life and salvation. From that day to this I have
          been contending against the powers of evil, according to the
          little ability God has given me. The kingdom of God is
          reestablished upon the earth; and the Gospel of life and
          salvation must be preached in all the world, that all may be
          judged thereby. Every nation, kindred, tongue and people must be
          warned before the Lord can come out of his hiding place, and
          waste away the wicked who have rejected his warning message. We
          have contended against sin in high places; we still contend
          against it in our own bosoms; for we should seek earnestly to
          gain the victory over sin in ourselves, before we can reasonably
          expect to gain the conquest over sin in others. Until we can
          subdue our own passions, and bring every human feeling and
          aspiration into subjection to the will of God, we are not really
          capable of guiding and dictating others to the full possession of
          victory in the Kingdom of God. To conquer and subdue, and school
          ourselves until we bring everything into subjection to the law of
          Christ, is our work.
          Our Heavenly Father does not always reveal to his children the
          secret workings of his providences, nor does he show them the end
          from the beginning; for they have to learn to trust in him who
          has promised to fight our battles, and crown us with victory, if
          we are faithful as was faithful Abraham. The contest which we
          have now on hand is chiefly against sin in ourselves. "For if we
          sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the
          truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins, but a certain
          fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation which shall
          devour the adversaries." Then let us contend against sin in our
          families, in our neighbors and friends, and strive to restore to
          the inhabitants of the earth and to all the creatures which God
          has made to dwell upon it, that which was lost by the fall of
          man. Our labor will not end until this is accomplished, our work
          completed, and the kingdom is the Lord's. "Know ye not, that they
          which run a race, run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run
          that ye may obtain. And every man that striveth for the mastery
          is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a
          corruptible crown but we an incorruptible." Then let us fight on,
          "For it is the day of the Lord's vengeance, and the year of
          recompenses for the controversy of Zion." He has commenced it
          with this, our once happy nation, and he will continue until
          Jesus shall rule and reign triumphantly in the midst of his
          Saints, over sin, death, and hell. The Lord is gracious and is
          waiting for us to purify ourselves, and thus be better prepared
          to receive the providences of God when he arises to shake
          terribly the earth, and bring to pass the perfect deliverance of
          his people. "For the Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of
          temptation, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to
          be punished." For we are made nigh unto Christ by his blood. "But
          the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, say
          not in thine heart, who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to
          bring Christ down from above:) Or, who shall descend into the
          deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.) But what
          saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy
          heart; that is the word of faith, which we preach. The Lord is
          here with us, not in person, but his angels are around us, and he
          takes cognizance of every act of the children of men, as
          individuals and as nations. He is here ready by his agents, the
          angels, and by the power of his Holy Spirit and Priesthood, which
          he has restored in these last days, to bring most perfect and
          absolute deliverance unto all who put their trust in Him, when
          they are ready to receive it; and, until they are ready, the work
          of preparation must be vigorously progressed in, while at the
          same time we in patience must possess our souls. For what scholar
          can at once make himself acquainted thoroughly with the beginning
          and the end of a finished education? It is a work of time. The
          Lord is gracious and full of kindness to his children, and has
          given them this probation to prepare themselves for his coming,
          and to dwell with him in mansions of glory.
          I wish my brethren and sisters to understand that the contest
          between themselves and the power of Satan is now, to-day, and has
          been ever since the Lord Almighty bestowed his Holy Priesthood
          upon his servant Joseph. When holy angels were sent from heaven
          to call and ordain Joseph Smith, and he to ordain others, the war
          commenced against sin and the power of it, and will continue
          until the earth shall be cleansed from it, and shall be made a
          fit habitation for Saints and angels. The Holy Priesthood has
          been restored expressly for this purpose. There is nothing that
          the Saints can ask, or pray for, that will aid them in their
          progress to the attainment of all the freedom, liberty, power,
          and conquest, that they are capable of desiring and making a good
          use of, that will not be granted unto them, if they will only
          patiently struggle on. I am happy in saying that the Lord is
          doing his work most admirably. Are we progressing as fast as the
          work of the Lord is progressing? He has pled with the people by
          the voice of his Spirit, by the voice of angels, and by the voice
          of his servants; but their ears are heavy. He is pleading now
          with the sword, as well as with the voice of his servants, and he
          will plead with them by tempest and storm, and soon will plead
          with them by famine and by pestilence. The Savior has said: "And
          ye shall hear of wars, and rumors of wars; see that ye be not
          troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is
          not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom
          against kingdom; and there shall be famines, and pestilences and
          earthquakes in divers places. All these are the beginning of
          The men and women, who desire to obtain seats in the celestial
          kingdom, will find that they must battle with the enemy of all
          righteousness every day. "Stand therefore, having your loins girt
          about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;
          and your feet shod with the preparation of the Gospel of peace;
          above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able
          to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet
          of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of
          God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the
          spirit, and watching there unto with all perseverance and
          supplication for all Saints." Thus let every Saint protect and
          guard his little castle against every effort of the enemy to
          assail, and secure a foothold therein. Let us see to it that we
          are ready for the enemy, to baffle him at every point, contending
          bravely against him until he is successfully repulsed.
          With regard to the obedience of heavenly beings, to which
          reference has been made to day; they live pure and holy, and they
          have attained unto this power through suffering. Many of them
          have drank of the bitter cup even to the dregs. They have learned
          that righteousness will prevail, that truth is the foundation of
          their very existence. They have learned that their Father and God
          never commits an evil, that he never proposes an evil, and that
          whatever he dictates is for their good. When an angel is
          appointed to perform a duty, to go to the earth to preach the
          Gospel, or to do anything for the advancement of his Fathers
          kingdom in any part of the great domain of heaven, the vision of
          that angel is opened to see and understand the magnitude of the
          work that is expected of him to perform, and the grand results
          which will grow out of it. That is the reason why the angels are
          of one heart and of one mind, in their faithfulness and obedience
          to the requirements of their Father and God. They can desire and
          ask for nothing that will make them happy, good and great that is
          withheld from them; and life eternal is theirs. Why, then, should
          they not be of one heart and of one mind? They see alike,
          understand alike, and know alike, and all things are before them,
          and, as far as their knowledge and experience extend, they see
          the propriety of all the works of God, and the harmony and beauty
          Those who do not believe in Jesus Christ, in Joseph the Prophet,
          or in the Book of Mormon, in short, all who do not believe as we
          do, or who are out side of this Church and kingdom, love health,
          wealth, joy, peace, light, intelligence, power, eloquence, and
          elegance; they want all these blessings which the righteous live
          for; but they will not live for them. They do not pursue the
          course to put themselves in possession of the very things they
          most desire; they are aiming entirely in the opposite direction,
          and manage always to be too late in obtaining them. Not so with
          the Latter-day Saints, or the Former-day Saints: they were, are
          and will be always just in time to secure the blessings they live
          for. The Saints have their trials, to be sure, to prove their
          faithfulness before God, and they have the experience and
          blessings which spring from them. It is thought by many that the
          possession of gold and silver will produce for them happiness,
          and, hence, thousands hunt the mountains for the precious metals;
          in this they are mistaken. The possession of wealth alone does
          not produce happiness, although it will produce comfort, when it
          can be exchanged for the essentials and luxuries of life. When
          wealth is obtained by purloining, or in any other unfair and
          dishonorable way, fear of detection and punishment robs the
          possessor of all human happiness. When wealth is honorably
          obtained by men, still the possession of it is embittered by the
          thought that death will soon strip them of it and others will
          possess it. What hopes have they in the future, after they get
          through with this sorrowful world? They know nothing about the
          future; they see nothing but death and hell. Solid comfort and
          unalloyed joy are unknown to them. When the faithful Latter-day
          Saints come to the end of their earthly existence, "we know that
          if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a
          building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the
          heavens." The faithful Latter-day Saint knows that the
          dissolution of this mortal house will introduce his immortal
          spirit to freedom from death and punishment, and to the enjoyment
          of the society of the spirits of just men made perfect. To a
          person who has such a glorious hope everything is bright and
          beautiful. If he has but little, he enjoys that little with a
          thankful heart to his Heavenly Father; if he possesses much, he
          is still thankful, not worshiping, or placing his heart upon the
          filthy lucre God has placed in his power to do good with. In
          poverty he feels blest and happy; for his hope is in God, and his
          wealth consists in eternal riches, having laid up treasures in
          heaven where moth doth not destroy, nor rust corrode, nor thief
          break through nor steal. The latter-day Saints have been driven
          from their homes, and their goods have been spoiled; but they
          esteem this as nothing. What do we care for houses and lands and
          possessions? The whole earth is before us and all the fulness
          thereof. The Latter-day Saints are living in the expectation of
          redeeming Zion, when the law shall go forth from Zion, and when
          Jesus will reign king of nations, as he now reigns king of
          Remarks have been made as to our staying here. I will tell you
          how long we shall stay here. If we live our religion, we shall
          stay here in these mountains forever and forever, worlds without
          end, and a portion of the Priesthood will go and redeem and build
          up the centre Stake of Zion. If we leave here, where shall we go
          to? Has any one discovered when we leave this country? In the
          days of Joseph we have sat many hours at a time conversing about
          this very country. Joseph has often said, "If I were only in the
          Rocky Mountains with a hundred faithful men, I would then be
          happy, and ask no odds of mobocrats." And neither do I. Who are
          going to pull up stakes and leave here? If we forsake our God and
          our religion, then woe to us; for then we shall be all apostates
          together, and under such circumstances we have no promise of God
          for our protection; but, if we live in the faith of the Son of
          God, we have the heavens, the power of God and of angels on our
          side. I can tell you, as truly as Elisha said to his servant,
          "fear not; for they that be with us are more than they that be
          with them," (our enemies.) For, "the mountain was full of horses
          and chariots of fire around about Elisha."
          Satan has great power upon the earth, which he will exercise
          against Christ and his kingdom, and we have so to live as to gain
          power to triumph over him, and successfully drive him and his
          adherents from the earth, and introduce everlasting righteousness
          and peace; and we will do it in the name of Israel's God. The
          Lord being my helper, I will never give up the ship; I will never
          leave it, as long as there is an inch of plank left; and it will
          live in wilder seas than have yet assailed it, and come out
          unharmed; in short, it will endure for ever. We may apostatize
          from the faith, and go out of the Church and Kingdom of God, and
          be lost; but this will have no effect upon the progress of the
          Lord's Work, neither can all the powers of hell combined
          accomplish aught against it. The Lord God of Israel has led this
          people from the beginning, and every effort the enemy has made to
          destroy them has only added renewed strength and vigor to the
          cause of truth, although at the time of our great afflictions,
          and while in the straits in which we have been placed, we could,
          naturally speaking, see nothing but death and suffering. The Lord
          has suffered all these things for the perfecting of the righteous
          and the good of his people, and that the wicked may be left
          without excuse. There is not another nation under heaven but
          this, in whose midst the Book of Mormon could have been brought
          forth. The Lord has been operating for centuries to prepare the
          way for the coming forth of the contents of that Book from the
          bowels of the earth, to be published to the world, to show to the
          inhabitants thereof that he still lives, and that he will, in the
          latter days, gather his elect from the four corners of the earth.
          It was the Lord who directed the discovery of this land to the
          nations of the old world, and its settlement, and the war for
          independence, and the final victory of the colonies, and the
          unprecedented prosperity of the American nation, up to the
          calling of Joseph the Prophet. The Lord has dictated and directed
          the whole of this, for the bringing forth, and establishing of
          his Kingdom in the last days. On one occasion, when the Prophet
          was imprisoned, Sidney Rigdon exhorted the Saints to scatter and
          every man do the best he could for himself; "for," said he, "this
          work of the gathering of the Saints we shall not accomplish,
          these Saints will never be gathered again." I took the liberty of
          saying to him that it was my opinion that we should be gathered
          again, and that, by and bye, we should have Joseph with us. Some
          thought it impossible; but we had Joseph again and we gathered.
          The Lord thus proved his people, and tried them whether they
          would apostatize and give themselves up to the power of Satan, or
          be faithful to their calling and to their God under every
          circumstance. The Lord will try this people in all things, as he
          tried Abraham of old, to prove whether they will forsake him, or
          cling to the faith of the Holy Gospel. I have been in this
          Kingdom almost from the beginning; and I have not yet seen
          anything I would call a trial, that I could not willingly and
          joyfully endure; for, "blessed is the man that endureth
          temptation; for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of
          life, which the Lord has promised to them that love him: The Lord
          has thrown his people on several occasions, into circumstances of
          destitution and dependence, to try the leaders of the nation, and
          has thus said unto them, what will you now do for my poor and
          afflicted people; and their reply has been, "We will destroy
          them, if we can." They think they will destroy us yet. In this,
          however, they are mistaken, "for God hath not appointed us to
          wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ."
          Shall we still cling to the faith of Christ, or will we forsake
          the Lord our God, and seek "the friendship of the world which is
          enmity against God?" Before we were driven out of Missouri I had
          a vision, if I would dare to say that I had a vision, and saw
          that the people would go to the east, to the north and to the
          west; but we should go back to Jackson County from the west. When
          this people return to the Centre Stake of Zion, they will go from
          the west. The Lord has used every means to save the nation. He
          has called upon them by night and by day, through His servants
          whom he has sent among them; but they are bent on their own
          destruction. When we were driven from Nauvoo, our Elders went to
          the East to lay our case before the judges, governors, and rulers
          of the different States to ask for an asylum; but none was
          offered us. We sent men through the eastern country to try and
          raise some means for the destitute women and children, whose
          husbands, fathers and brothers had gone into the Mexican war at
          the call of the General Government, leaving their wives and
          children and aged fathers and mothers upon the open prairies
          without home or shelter, and the brethren who went East hardly
          got enough to bear their expenses. The great men of the nation
          were asked if they would do anything for the Lord's people. No;
          not a thing would they do, but hoped they would perish in the
          wilderness. "Therefore," saith the Lord, "behold, the destroyer I
          have sent forth to destroy and lay waste mine enemies: and not
          many years hence they shall not be left to pollute mine heritage,
          and to blaspheme my name upon the lands which I have consecrated
          for the gathering together of my saints." In the year 1845 I
          addressed letters to all the Governors of States and Territories
          in the Union, asking them for an asylum, within their borders,
          for the Latter-day Saints. We were refused such privilege, either
          by silent contempt or a flat denial in every instance. They all
          agreed that we could not come within the limits of their
          Territory or State. Three members of Congress came to negotiate
          with us to leave the confines of the United States, and of the
          public domain. It was understood that we were going to Vancouver
          Island; but we had our eye on Mexico, and here we are located in
          the midst of what was then northern Mexico. Fears have been
          entertained that we shall again be meddled with; but you will
          find that the enemies of the cause of God will have plenty of
          business besides digging gold and silver and fighting the Saints,
          and I trust Utah will be left as unnoticed as it is in the
          President's message. I thank them for what they have done and for
          what they have not done. I thank the Lord that he has led this
          people, and suffered them to be driven from place to place. I
          thank the Lord that we have the words of eternal life; and if we
          live by them, our feet are as sure and as fast as these
          everlasting hills. I know where the Saints will dwell.
          In the mind of God there is no such a thing as dividing spiritual
          from temporal, or temporal from spiritual; for they are one in
          the Lord. There was nothing of a temporal or spiritual nature
          suggested by Joseph Smith in his day, for the action of the
          Latter-day Saints that would not have been beneficial for them,
          if they had, with one heart and mind, performed all he desired
          them to do. We have proposed many things with regard to our
          temporal affairs in these valleys, which, when strictly obeyed,
          have been attended with great benefits. Our action touching our
          grain has greatly benefited this community; it has resulted in
          replenishing the wardrobes of the people throughout the
          Territory, and placed in their possession many thousands of
          dollars. If you have a few hundred pounds of flour to sell, keep
          it by you; by-and-by, you will be offered a good price for it in
          gold. Do not be tempted to sell your breadstuff for a ribbon, or
          a frill, or for some useless trapping; for herein we are exposed
          to danger, when we treat as a light thing the blessings of the
          Lord, and squander them as a thing of naught. Those men and women
          who barter away their breadstuff for naught, trifle with the
          blessings which the heavens have bestowed on them.
          There are brethren who have studied law; but where is there a man
          in our midst now that is worth anything by studying law? Where is
          there a merchant among us who has, year after year, continued in
          the love of the world, that cares anything about the kingdom of
          God? Look out, yemen of Israel, and be careful that you love not
          the world or the things of the world in their present state, and
          in your loftiness and pride, forget the Lord your God. We ought
          to care no more for the silver and the gold, and the property
          that is so much sought for by the wicked world, than for the soil
          or the gravel upon which we tread: "For all that is in the world,
          the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of
          life, is not of the Father, but is of the world, and the world
          passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of
          God abideth for ever." "If any man love the world, the love of
          the Father is not in him." I will refer to our merchants, I mean
          our "Mormon merchants" particularly. What do they say about their
          goods? They do not ask what their goods are worth, or what they
          paid for them, but what will the people give for them? That is
          the price. It is not what their goods are really worth, but "how
          many greenbacks will it take to buy me another stock of goods?"
          It will take a good many. What their goods are worth is not a
          question with them, but what they can get. They will get
          sorrow--the most of them will be damned, there is no doubt of it,
          unless they repent. You will excuse me for talking thus of my
          brethren, but what else can I say about them? I am not speaking
          about my individual feelings towards them, but upon principle. My
          individual feelings are nothing but good towards them. They are
          kind to me, and I have no fault to find with them in their
          dealings with me; but I see the danger they are in. Ye merchants,
          and lawyers, and doctors and speculators, be careful that you
          secure to yourselves eternal life in the kingdom of God, in
          preference to doing anything else. That perfect union, which must
          ultimately be enjoyed by the Latter-day Saints, can only be
          brought about by every man and woman living so as to keep their
          minds pure and unspotted like a piece of clean white paper, being
          constantly free from the love of the world, that the spirit of
          revelation may easily indite upon the heart whatever is the mind
          and will of the Lord. We cannot be truly the members of Christ's
          mystical body without living in this way that the Spirit may
          indite as easily upon the heart the things of God, as these
          brethren, our reporters, can write with ink on paper. In this way
          you have the witness within yourself, and "need that no man teach
          you only as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is
          truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall
          abide in him." May the Lord bless the righteous. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / John
          Taylor, December 11, 1864
                           John Taylor, December 11, 1864
                                      FUTURE OF
            Remarks by Elder John Taylor, made in the Tabernacle in Great
                      Lake City, on Sunday, December 11, 1864.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          We meet together, as intelligent beings, desirous of
          understanding something of our common origin, our present
          existence, and our future destiny. We meet to find out something
          in relation to our Heavenly Father, in relation to His
          providential dealings with the human family, in relation to His
          policy and designs pertaining to us, and in relation to the
          object of our creation; and to know something, if possible,
          pertaining to that world that lies beyond our present scene of
          action. These are some things among the many that we are desirous
          to know, to comprehend, to find out if possible. We further wish
          to pursue a course that shall be acceptable to our God and
          Father; having partaken of a portion of His Holy Spirit we are
          desirous to be taught more perfectly the things pertaining to the
          kingdom of God, we are desirous of cultivating His Holy Spirit,
          and to draw from the fountain of light and intelligence; from the
          spirit of revelation that flows from God; and the spirit that
          dwells in us, comfort, consolation, and intelligence; that we may
          feel that we are the sons and daughters of God, that we are
          walking in the light of His countenance, that we are doing the
          things that are pleasing and acceptable in His sight, that our
          own consciences are producing satisfactory evidence to our minds
          that our conduct and acts are acceptable before the Lord, and
          that the Holy Ghost also bears testimony to us that we are His
          children, doing His will, walking in the light of His
          countenance, helping to establish His kingdom on the earth, and
          to fulfil the varied duties we are placed here upon the earth to
          attend to. These are some of the ideas and feelings which all
          good men and women entertain in relation to the past, the
          present, and the future. Notwithstanding, we have many
          weaknesses, infirmities, follies, and foibles; yet, at the same
          time, when we are filled with the spirit which flows from the
          Lord our Heavenly Father, these are generally the feelings which
          we entertain. We feel a spirit of gratitude to our Heavenly
          Father for the blessings that we have received from His hands;
          and when we look upon things as they exist around us, in our
          nation, and in other nations, we certainly have great cause to
          cultivate feelings of thankfulness when we reflect upon the
          position of the world, and view the darkness, ignorance, folly,
          superstition, wickedness, corruption and evil that is spread
          abroad, and which prevails over the face of the earth. When we
          reflect that light and intelligence have beamed forth from the
          heavens, that God in his mercy has made manifest His will to the
          human family; that in the plenitude of His mercy and goodness He
          has restored the Holy Priesthood, and placed us in communication
          with Himself; that he has taught us not only how to pray but how
          to approach unto him for the forgiveness of our sins, for the
          reception of the Holy Ghost, for instruction and guidance in
          relation to all matters pertaining to our fathers, relative to
          this world and to the world that is to come, we certainly have
          great cause of gratitude to our Heavenly Father for the many
          mercies and blessings He has conferred upon us. Wherever we turn
          our attention we can find cause of gratitude to our Heavenly
          Father for the blessings that we enjoy, and we can truly say, as
          was said by a certain person of old, "The lines are fallen unto
          me in pleasant places; yea, I have a goodly heritage." The Lord
          has revealed unto us the principles of eternal truth, so "That"
          (unlike the world) "we henceforth be no more children, tossed to
          and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the
          sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait
          to deceive." But our feet are established upon the rock of
          eternal truth which has been revealed from the heavens, for the
          benefit, blessing, and exaltation of the human family, in time
          and in eternity. How very different is our position in relation
          to this from what it was before we heard the Gospel. Then we were
          surrounded with ten thousands influences, notions, and ideas
          which might be right, or which might be wrong; we had no test, no
          rule, no principle whereby to guide our lives or our conduct; we
          could not find any person on the earth that knew anything about
          the principles of eternity; we never heard anything further than
          opinion before we embraced this doctrine; we had the opinion of
          commentators, of divines, philosophers, and politicians, nothing
          but opinion without certainty to guide our erring feet. We were
          desirous, perhaps as much so as we are to-day, to do right, we
          were perhaps as zealous then as we are now in pursuing the course
          that we thought might be satisfactory to our Heavenly Father; but
          we knew not what would please Him. The world of mankind to-day
          are just in the position that we were then in, they have no more
          certainty, evidence, or knowledge than we had before we embraced
          the principles of eternal truth--and, in fact, the truth does not
          exist in the world, or, if it does exist, it is unknown to the
          men of the world; they are unable to discern between truth and
          error, light and darkness, between the things of God and the
          things of man.
          The Lord has revealed to us the principles of eternal life. It is
          not a matter of mere thought, of mere opinion; our principles are
          not ideal, but they are facts, not notions; they are truths, not
          opinions; they are certainties--things that we know and
          comprehend for ourselves. Nothing can be more forcible, nothing
          can be a stronger evidence, if we want any evidence, than the
          testimony or evidence which the Lord has communicated unto us
          Paul said when he was speaking to the people, "And my speech and
          my preaching was not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in
          demonstration of the Spirit, and of power; that your faith should
          not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God." Again,
          "If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater:
          for this is the witness of God which he hath testified of his
          Son. He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in
          himself; he that believeth not God, hath made him a liar, because
          he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son." Every
          person who embraced the gospel in that day enjoyed an evident
          testimony of which the world were ignorant. They received an
          inspiring intelligent assurance which was imparted by the Holy
          Ghost unto all those who receive the gospel both in former and in
          latter times, and hence they that believe have the witness in
          When the Elders were sent to preach the gospel, they were told to
          call upon the people to repent and be baptized in the name of
          Jesus for the remission of sins, and they should receive the Holy
          Ghost. This was told to the people in ancient days, and no
          stronger testimony than this could be given to the heart of man;
          nothing is greater evidence that the Lord is with His Elders that
          go forth bearing the precious seeds of eternal life than this. An
          Elder is the minister of God, His representative on the earth; he
          acts by His authority, in His name, and God sanctions his acts,
          and proves to him and to those who receive the gospel, that he is
          the messenger of God. The Lord has told him to go and preach
          baptism for the remission of sins, and that when people repented
          and were baptized for the remission of sins, and had hands laid
          upon them for the reception of the Holy Ghost, that they should
          receive the Holy Ghost, and have evidence for themselves, as they
          received and knew formerly under the administration of the
          ancient apostles. Thus every person so baptised and administered
          to has evidence undoubted within himself, and every Elder has a
          testimony that God is with him and sanctions his acts; and as an
          Elder could not impart the Holy Ghost without the authority and
          power of God, so the person receiving the Holy Ghost could not
          partake of it without the Lord's administration through the
          You may use the reasoning of men, you may bring into requisition
          the strongest oratorial powers, and all this will fail to
          convince any man, without the Spirit of God. You may bring the
          brightest talent to bear, and collect the strongest evidence it
          is possible for man to produce, but in the absence of the Holy
          Ghost all this will pass away like an idle dream, or with passing
          remarks such as, "That man is a very eloquent man, the principles
          he advances are evident, plain, and reasonable, but then it don't
          concern us at all, we are not interested in the matter," etc.;
          but when the Spirit of eternal truth, emanating from God,
          operates upon our spirits, which are a part of deity, if you
          please, when there is a union formed, and an intercourse opened,
          and intelligence communicated, then the persons who possess this
          intelligence, this knowledge, this comforting influence, this
          strong assurance that is imparted and can be imparted only from
          spirit to spirit; when persons receive this, they then have for
          themselves an assurance that no earthly argument or philosophical
          demonstration can possibly impart. We are a part of deity, that
          is, our spirits are a part, as it were, of the Great Jehovah,
          that have been struck from His eternal blaze--eternal
          intelligence and light and life.
          When the light that is in heaven communicates with the light
          within us; when the Spirit that dwells in the bosom of the
          Almighty dwells in ours, and an intercourse is opened between
          heaven and us, we are then placed in a position to understand
          that which it would be impossible to comprehend upon any natural
          principle known to us, and hence it is written, "For what man
          knoweth the things of a man save the spirit of man which is in
          him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of
          God." In order that men may indeed become the children of God, He
          has introduced in the first principles of the gospel the means of
          their becoming possessed of His Spirit through baptism and laying
          on of hands by those having authority, being sent and ordained
          and authorized by Him that they may receive the Holy Ghost. What
          can be a stronger evidence to any man than an evidence of this
          kind? It is not something that affects the outward ear alone; it
          is not something that affects simply his judgment, but it affects
          his inner man; it affects the spirit that dwells within him; it
          is a part of God imparted unto man, if you please, giving him an
          assurance that God lives. This is a thing of very great
          importance, more so, perhaps, than many people imagine. A man
          receives an assurance that God lives, and not only that God
          lives, but that he is a son of God, because he feels that he has
          partaken of His spirit, the spirit of adoption; and hence it was
          said concerning the Saints of old, "For ye have not received the
          spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the spirit
          of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself
          beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of
          The Saints of old received a spirit whereby they were enabled to
          say Abba, Father, or, my Father. Now, reflecting upon this, what
          strong confidence is imparted unto the Saints of God, giving them
          an assurance that no person has, and that no person can have,
          unless they adopt the same means, in order to partake of the same
          blessings or to be administered to in the same way, and receive
          through the same medium, that same spirit of intelligence which
          nothing but the Holy Ghost can impart. When persons receive this
          they are enabled to say, My Father. What were they enabled to say
          before? Did they know anything about their Father or About their
          God? Did they know anything about their origin, or did they know
          anything really in relation to the future?
          What can you find among the world like this anywhere, among the
          most pious, best, the most honorable, pure, and virtuous, what
          can you find among them? Only, simply, "we try to do the best
          that we can, and we hope it will be well with us hereafter; we
          hope our great Heavenly Father will be merciful to us." They can
          make no further advances than that, without the gift and blessing
          of the Holy Ghost. They hope certain things, they believe in
          certain things, they pray for certain things, they desire certain
          things, but they have no assurance in relation to them. Nothing
          but the Holy Spirit proceeding from the Father and the Son can
          impart unto us that intelligence which is necessary to place the
          Church and Kingdom of God upon a sure and firm basis. The Lord
          has introduced this among us. It is no matter what language a man
          may speak, or what country he lives in, no matter what his former
          profession or circumstances, here is the Gospel of eternal life
          and truth proclaimed by the weakest of God's Elders, which he has
          chosen and set apart to preach the words of eternal life in all
          the world. Wherever people receive the words of truth that that
          Elder has preached unto them and obey them by baptism, and have
          hands laid on them for the reception of the Holy Ghost, they all
          feel alike, no matter what country they were born in, what their
          religion, politics, social ideas, or anything else; whether Jew
          or Gentile, bond or free, they are all one in Christ Jesus.
          We have people gathered together in this Territory from all parts
          of the earth; they have all been baptized into one baptism, and
          all have par taken of one spirit, and that one spirit proceeds
          from the fountain of light and truth. It would be impossible,
          under any other circumstances, to unite people together as our
          people in the mountains are united. It would be impossible for
          all the reasoning powers of man to bring about any such result;
          nothing but the power and Spirit of God could accomplish it.
          We all feel alike in regard to the great principles of eternal
          truth. Why do we feel alike? Because we have all partaken of one
          spirit, which proceeds from our Heavenly Father, it is the Holy
          Ghost. How does it affect us? It affects our spirits. And
          although we do not understand, sometimes, one another's speech,
          and are ignorant of the ideas entertained by one another; and
          although the habits, customs, and manners are diverse and various
          among the different nations from which we have come, we still are
          one in sentiment, one in faith and in confidence, and one in
          I have heard men in the United States thank God with their whole
          heart for the spirit imparted to them and for the blessings of
          the everlasting Gospel; I have heard them do the same in France
          and in Germany, and I have heard them do the same among other
          nations whose language I was not acquainted with. The same spirit
          inspires the whole--it is the spirit of God, imparted through
          obedience to his laws, and through the administration of the
          Gospel through the Holy Priesthood, or by means of the Elders he
          has sent forth, and whose acts He sanctions by imparting the Holy
          Ghost on whom they lay their hands; and hence we are one, having
          been baptized into one baptism, and partaken of the same spirit,
          and hence we have assurance, and are constituted as no other
          people are under the heavens. We possess that evidence and
          assurance which the world cannot give, neither can the world take
          it away; and hence, we go forth with a steady unerring aim with
          regard to the future. We know, individually and collectively,
          what we are doing, and if there be those among us who do not
          comprehend all things, yet we do know that we have partaken of
          the Holy Ghost. We feel like the man that was born blind, who was
          healed by the Savior. The Pharisees said to the healed man, "Give
          God the praise, we know that this man is a sinner." He answered
          and said: "Whether he be a sinner or not, I know not; one thing I
          know, that, whereas I was blind, now I see."
          All the sons and daughters of God who are living their religion,
          and faithfully keeping the commandments of God, can render a
          reason for the hope that is within them, and can answer the whys
          and the wherefores for the movements of the Church and kingdom of
          God upon the earth. They may not know what is going to be the
          result of this, that and the other; but they do know that they
          have received the Holy Ghost, and that God lives--that they have
          received a principle, whereby they are enabled to say, Abba
          Father--My Father. And this is life eternal, that they might know
          Thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent."
          Hence we have partaken of a portion of eternal lives, and have
          begun to live for ever. It was upon this principle that Jesus
          spake to the woman of Samaria, when he asked her for a drink. Now
          there was a strong enmity existing between the Jews and the
          Samaritans, and she thought it singular when Jesus asked her for
          a drink of water. "Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou
          knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith unto thee, give
          me to drink; thou would'st have asked him, and he would have
          given thee living water." "Whosoever drinketh of this water,
          shall thirst again; but whosoever drinketh of the water that I
          shall give him, shall never thirst; but the water that I shall
          give him, shall be in him a well of water springing up into
          everlasting life."
          Did the world know who these Elders are that go forth among them
          bearing the precious seed of eternal life; could they comprehend
          and realize it, they would ask of them, and they would give them
          water which would be in them a well springing up into eternal
          life; for they are the representatives of God on the earth, going
          forth with authority from Him to impart unto the world the Holy
          Ghost, and lead them into the paths of life. We have partaken of
          this Holy Spirit, and hence there is confidence manifested in all
          our movements and actions as a people. 
          Who among the true saints of God ever doubts as to the destiny of
          this kingdom? Who that has the spirit of revelation--the spirit
          of truth--ever dreams that this kingdom will ever be overthrown?
          They quake in the north, and in the south; they wonder what the
          end will be--whether they will gain that victory or lose that
          battle; whether we are going to be divided into two separate
          nations, be consolidated in one, or divided into a great many.
          These are matters that puzzle the wisest of our statesmen. If we
          have any wise men in the United States, and in the nations of
          Europe or the earth, let them manifest their wisdom and put the
          world right.
          The Latter-day Saints have no wonder what is going to become of
          them, it never enters into our minds that anything will transpire
          that will overthrow the Church and kingdom of God on the earth.
          What man that is a Saint and has in his possession the gift of
          the Holy Ghost, that does not know that the kingdom of God is
          onward? We know that we shall overcome every opposing power. No
          matter what transpires, what effect has it on us? None at all. It
          only affects the weak and vacillating, that have not lived their
          religion and followed the light of the Holy Spirit in them, they
          may fear; but the men and women of God, those who live in the
          light of the countenance of the Lord, and cherish the Holy Spirit
          in their bosoms, having no other feeling but the final triumph of
          the kingdom of God on the earth, they know nothing else.
          What inspired the ancient prophets to know that the time would
          come when the Saints of God should take the kingdom, and the
          greatness of it under the whole heavens should be given to them
          and He whose right it is, should rule and reign, and have
          dominion? The same Spirit that dwells in us proceeds from the
          same God that inspired the prophets of old, developing the same
          truths, making manifest the same things, and unfolding the same
          principles. We have confidence in relation to these matters; and
          hence men that understand this, who live their religion, feel
          perfectly satisfied in regard to any or all the events that shall
          transpire on the earth.
          We were driven out of Missouri--we were driven from one place to
          another in Missouri, before we were driven out altogether; then
          we were driven from Illinois to this Territory. But what of that?
          I know some men who thought the work was at an end. I remember a
          remark made by Sidney Rigdon--I suppose he did not live his
          religion--I do not think he did--his knees began to shake in
          Missouri, and on one occasion he said, "Brethren, every one of
          you take your own way, for the work seems as though it had come
          to an end." Brigham Young encouraged the people, and Joseph Smith
          told them to be firm and maintain their integrity, for God would
          be with his people and deliver them. I never saw a time that the
          Saints enjoyed themselves better than when they, apparently, were
          wading through the deepest troubles; I never saw them more full
          of the Holy Ghost, and take more joyfully the spoiling of their
          goods. Why was this? Because they had that spirit within them of
          which we are speaking, and they knew what would be the result of
          all these things. When we left Nauvoo, we sang joyfully--
          "On the way to California,
                 In the spring we'll take our journey;
                 Far above Arkansas fountains,
                 Pass between the Rocky Mountains."
          When it was asked us, "Where are you going?" our reply would be,
          "We hardly know; we are going somewhere, and God will protect us,
          and all is right and well in Zion, and all is peace, and all will
          be peace to those who will love God and keep his commandments;
          because his kingdom is established upon the rock of ages, and it
          is God's business to take care of his Saints, and all is well."
          And when the nation with which we are associated is shaken to its
          centre and crumbles to pieces (it is pretty well shaken now,
          notwithstanding what our President seems to say about it, that
          everything is very prosperous, and that we have more men now than
          before the war), notwithstanding all this, it is crumbling and
          falling, and it will continue to fall and to crumble, until it is
          no more, and by and bye there will be an end of it. Not so with
          the kingdom of God; it will stand, and continue to exist and
          spread and go forth, and correct principles--principles of
          eternal truth and light and revelation from God--will be
          unfolded, and intelligence that dwells with the gods will
          continue to be imparted to this people, and God will be their
          God, and they will be His people, and He will continue to lead
          them on from strength to strength and from knowledge to
          knowledge, until they understand all correct principles that can
          be known on the earth, until they are enabled to redeem
          themselves and their posterity, and then establish the kingdom of
          God on the earth until the kingdoms of this world shall become
          the kingdoms of our God and His Christ, and He shall reign for
          ever and for ever. And to this end God has imparted unto us the
          spirit of intelligence and wisdom that is unfaltering,
          unwavering, and unchanging, and that will live and abide for
          ever. Have we not cause to be grateful to God our heavenly
          Father? I think we have. We enjoy peace, we enjoy happiness, we
          enjoy the Holy Ghost, we enjoy communication with our heavenly
          Father, we enjoy an association with the holy Priesthood, we have
          the revelation of God in us, and God has undertaken to lead His
          people on from strength to strength, from intelligence to
          intelligence, from knowledge to knowledge, until they are able to
          see as they are seen, and know as they are known. And He is going
          to establish a reign of righteousness and introduce a correct
          form of government, even the government of God, the laws of God,
          the revelations of God to guide and direct in all things: He will
          be our guide in philosophy, in politics, in agriculture, in
          science, in art, and in everything that is calculated to
          enlighten and impart intelligence, and give knowledge of the laws
          of nations, of the laws of nature, of matter, and of all laws
          that regulate all things pertaining to time and to eternity. He
          will continue to instruct and to make manifest, and to put us in
          possession of those principles that will exalt us and prepare us
          to dwell with the Gods. We look on the future; we looked on it
          years ago, and we knew that the kingdom of God would roll on, and
          we know so to-day, only our faith and knowledge is becoming more
          stable, more established. We know that this kingdom will continue
          to spread and to increase. Who can deprive us of that knowledge?
          No earthly influence or power, or reasoning can do it; hence, we
          are perfectly satisfied in relation to these things. And while we
          know this is taking place and that a reign of righteousness will
          be introduced that will be calculated to exalt and ennoble the
          human family, and make the earth a paradise and to blossom as the
          rose, and make the wilderness and desolate places glad, and the
          government and kingdom of God exist from the rivers to the ends
          of the earth; whilst we are attending to these things, we are
          also attending to other things, we are securing to ourselves an
          everlasting exaltation, we are learning God and His laws, and the
          whisperings of His Spirit, whereby we can be saved and exalted
          and be brought to a closer union and connection with Him by
          covenants and ordinances, and anointings, and endowments, and
          blessings, that He is revealing and unfolding. We are learning to
          build temples where we can receive instruction, and revelation,
          and ordinances to be performed both for the living and the dead,
          for ourselves, progenitors, and posterity, and bless the human
          family throughout, that we may be saviors on Mount Zion and the
          kingdom be the Lord's. We are learning to secure for ourselves
          mansions with our heavenly Father, that where He is we may be
          also. Jesus said, "I go away; but if I go, I will come and
          receive you to myself, that where I am there you may be also,"
          &c. We are preparing ourselves for those mansions, and others are
          helping to prepare mansions for us who are behind the veil. We
          shall operate for those who are there, and they for us; for they,
          without us, cannot be made perfect, nor we without them. We are
          forming an alliance, a union, a connection, with those that are
          behind the veil, and they are forming a union and connection with
          us; and while we are living here, we are preparing to live
          hereafter, and laying a foundation for this in the celestial
          kingdom of God. Ought we not to call upon our souls, and upon all
          that is within us, to bless the name of the God of Israel, and to
          forget not all His mercies? Ought we not to be seeking
          continually to glorify God in our bodies and spirits, which are
          His? Ought we not to be seeking to have our passions and desires
          and appetites in obedience and subjection to the will of God?
          Ought we not to be seeking to control our will and desires, and
          have everything yielding obedience to that Spirit which emanates
          from our heavenly Father? Ought we not to be seeking to promote a
          union with every godlike principle, with everything that is
          lovely and amiable, and divest ourselves of all our evil passions
          and propensities, and follies and waywardness, and seek to draw
          near unto God ourselves, and also to draw our families near unto
          Him, and seek to cultivate the Holy Ghost, that it may be in us a
          well of water springing up into everlasting life, that we may be
          worthy to be citizens of the kingdom of God; and that hereafter
          we may enjoy an immortality of happiness with our progenitors and
          our posterity, and with our God in the eternal world, even in
          this world, when it shall be redeemed and sanctified and be made
          May God help us to keep his commandments, in the name of Jesus
          Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / George
          Q. Cannon, November 13, 1864
                         George Q. Cannon, November 13, 1864
                           PERFORMANCE OF TEMPORAL DUTIES.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / George
          Q. Cannon, November 13, 1864
                           PERFORMANCE OF TEMPORAL DUTIES.
            Remarks by Elder George Q. Cannon, made in Kaysville, Sunday,
                                 November 13, 1864.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          It is with very peculiar feelings, my brethren and sisters, that
          I stand before you this morning to address you upon the
          principles of life and salvation. In rising before you I request
          your faith and prayers, that I may have the Spirit of the Lord to
          dictate unto me those thoughts and reflections and instructions,
          which will be profitable unto us. I feel myself that the Spirit
          of the Almighty is here; I have enjoyed it very much this
          morning. While listening to the singing, I felt that the singers
          had the Spirit of God resting upon them.
          We can enjoy ourselves while we are met together to-day; it is
          our privilege to have a goodly outpouring of that Spirit which
          fills our hearts with joy, with peace, light and intelligence. If
          we concentrate our minds upon the object which has called us
          together, exercising faith in our Father and God, these meetings
          will be counted among the most delightful associations of our
          lives. I do not know that I ever enjoyed myself so happily under
          any circumstances, as I have in meeting with my brethren and
          sisters in conferences and in meetings like these that we have
          had yesterday and to-day. At these meetings we can throw aside
          the cares that press us from day to day, and concentrate our
          minds upon the blessings which pertain to the kingdom of God and
          to the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and understand to a greater extent
          than we can probably on ordinary occasions, how much the Lord our
          God has favored us in revealing unto us His everlasting Gospel,
          and in sending unto us His servants, authorized to administer
          unto us the ordinances thereof. When we are in meetings like the
          present, we can think about these things and ponder upon them,
          and our hearts are filled with renewed feelings of thanksgiving
          and gratitude to God for His abundant mercies to us as
          individuals and as a people. Since my arrival home from abroad
          this last time, I think that I never have experienced such a
          feeling of thanksgiving, joy, and happiness as I have during the
          last two or three weeks. My feelings have been peculiarly solemn,
          and I have often felt as though it would be a great luxury to get
          off in some corner alone and weep for joy for all the blessings
          God has so bountifully bestowed on us as a people, and upon
          myself as an individual. The older we grow, and the more the
          kingdom becomes developed, the more apparent are the blessings
          heaven bestows upon us. He must be indeed blind who cannot see
          that we are a people highly favored of God our Father, especially
          if it should be his lot to go forth among the nations, and come
          in contact with the evil which abounds in other countries. I
          believe there is a feeling of gratitude and thanksgiving
          pervading the breasts of the Saints generally, which causes them
          to appreciate the kindness of the Lord towards them. This feeling
          should increase more and more within us every day we live.
          The remarks which were made yesterday by the brethren who spoke
          were to me highly edifying; I rejoiced greatly in them, and I
          could echo the feeling expressed by Brother Woodruff when he
          said, we were the most blessed people on the face of the earth,
          in having a father in our midst who talks unto us in such
          plainness and simplicity the principles of life and salvation.
          While Brother Brigham was speaking unto us and dwelling upon the
          plain and simple principles of the Gospel, and those things
          necessary for us to observe in order that we may become developed
          before our heavenly Father, I felt that it requires constant
          teaching and admonition on the part of the servants of God to
          keep us in mind of our duty; it requires the servants of God to
          be stirred up continually to diligence in preaching the plain and
          simple principles of the Gospel to the people, that they may be
          duly impressed therewith. Notwithstanding all we have heard, and
          we have heard a great deal of the principles of righteousness, we
          still require to be admonished day by day concerning our duty. It
          seems to be one of the weaknesses of human nature that we are apt
          to forget the principles of truth and righteousness, and to give
          way to influences that are not of God. We are placed in this
          existence for the express purpose of learning to overcome all
          these things. One of the great objects, as I imagine, which God
          has in view in sending us here upon the earth, is to give us
          experience in the influences of the earth that we may contend
          with them successfully and overcome them, that when we pass
          beyond the vail we may be in a position to comprehend them to a
          greater extent than we could had we not come here and felt the
          influences to which human nature is subject. I have thought that
          we, as a people and as individuals, do not sufficiently realize
          the importance of keeping guard upon ourselves, and upon our
          feelings, and of resisting the influences that surround us.
          While the brethren were speaking upon one point, namely, the
          disposition of some people to imbibe spirituous liquor, it
          brought some reflections to my mind connected with the influences
          that prevail throughout the various portions of the earth. I
          believe there are places and circumstances in which people can be
          placed, where there are influences of this character brought to
          bear upon them that are more difficult to resist than there would
          be under other circumstances and in other places. I have often
          heard it remarked by the brethren, and I have remarked it myself,
          that in some places there is a greater disposition entertained by
          the people to commit adultery and indulge in kindred sins of this
          description than there is in this country. There seem to be
          influences in the atmosphere in those lands of such a character,
          that unless a person is on his guard and constantly watching and
          resisting them, he will be led down to destruction by them. A
          spirit and disposition will creep over the people unless they are
          careful, to lead them astray in the direction which I have named.
          This is undoubtedly the case. There are spirits in the atmosphere
          that are filled with that disposition, and who seek to influence
          those with whom they are brought in contact, impressing those who
          are in the tabernacle of flesh to indulge in the same sin.
          There are influences in the atmosphere that are invisible to us
          that, while we are here upon the earth, we ought to resist with
          all our might, mind, and strength--influences which, if we would
          be led by them, would lead us to destruction--influences that are
          opposed to the Spirit of God--influences that would bring upon us
          destruction here and hereafter, if we would yield to them. These
          influences we have to resist. We have to resist the spirit of
          adultery, the spirit of whoredom, the spirit of drunkenness, the
          spirit of theft, and every other evil influence and spirit, that
          we may continually overcome; and, when we have finished our work
          on the earth, be prepared to govern and control those influences,
          and exercise power over them, in the presence of our Father and
          God. I have no doubt that many of my brethren and sisters have
          sensibly felt in various places and at various times evil
          influences around them. Brother Joseph Smith gave an explanation
          of this. There are places in the Mississippi Valley where the
          influence or the presence of invisible spirits are very
          perceptibly felt. He said that numbers had been slain there in
          war, and that there were evil influences or spirits which affect
          the spirits of those who have tabernacles on the earth. I myself
          have felt those influences in other places besides the continent
          of America; I have felt them on the old battle grounds on the
          Sandwich Islands. I have come to the conclusion that if our eyes
          were open to see the spirit world around us, we should feel
          differently on this subject than we do; we would not be so
          unguarded and careless, and so indifferent whether we had the
          spirit and power of God with us or not; but we would be
          continually watchful and prayerful to our heavenly Father for His
          Holy Spirit and His holy angels to be around about us to
          strengthen us to overcome every evil influence.
          When I see young men indulging in drunkenness and in stealing, I
            come to the conclusion that they are led captive by the evil
           spirits around them. We call it the spirit of the evil one; but
           he has numerous agencies at work, even as the Lord has numerous
           agencies to assist him in bringing to pass the consummation of
            His great designs. The adversary has numerous agencies at his
            command, and he seeks to control and lead to destruction the
          inhabitants of the earth who will be subject to them. If we could
            see with our spiritual senses as we now see with our natural
              senses, we should be greatly shocked at the sight of the
           influences that prompt us to disobey the counsels of God or the
            Spirit of the Lord in our hearts. But we cannot see them, for
          they are spiritually discerned; and he who discerns the most, is
           the most fully impressed by the Spirit of God; he who does not
           discern, has not profited by the instructions given to him, and
           yields to those evil influences in an unguarded moment, and is
          taken captive in his blindness. He who is imbued with the Spirit
           of God is sensibly aware when the evil power approaches; but he
            does not welcome it to his bosom; he resists it with all the
           might and strength God has given unto him, and he obtains power
           over it, and it no more troubles him; if it does, its influence
                          is more weakened than previously. 
          We often talk about and desire to see angels. Every person who
          has joined this Church has had a desire to have revelations from
          God our Heavenly Father, and have knowledge poured out upon him
          as it was poured out in abundance upon the prophets of old. I
          merely suppose that this is so with everybody else, because I
          have these feelings myself, and judge others in this respect by
          myself. But, until we can learn to control and resist those evil
          influences that are now invisible, I think it would be
          unprofitable to have the administration of angels personally or
          visibly unto us. Until we can do this, I do not expect that we
          can have those other blessings profitably bestowed upon us. I do
          not expect that in the providence of God we will be favored with
          those other blessings until we can listen unto and obey the
          counsels of those appointed to preside over us. I know it is
          natural for people to be anxious to have some ministering spirit
          wait on them, and reveal itself unto them. For my own part, my
          reflections have caused me to view this in a different light than
          I viewed it in the beginning. I then thought it would be a great
          blessing to have that favor bestowed upon me. But when I have
          reflected upon the character and calling of the men whom God has
          called and sent in this generation--when I have thought of
          Brother Joseph Smith, and his greatness, his magnanimity, and his
          faith, I have thought, and still think, it is one of the greatest
          blessings of God upon me to have been permitted to behold his
          face and to listen to his teachings. I feel the same now towards
          the present leaders of Israel. I am satisfied that this
          generation has been honored by as great prophets as ever stood
          before God upon the earth, excepting the Lord Jesus Christ; and
          how could I expect, if I disobeyed Brother Joseph Smith's
          counsel, that I could be favored with the presence and
          instruction of any being further advanced than he was when he was
          in the flesh? And so I feel in relation to Brother Brigham, whom
          we now have with us; he is one of the noblest sons of God, a man
          whom God has endowed with the wisdom of eternity, with the power
          in part that is exercised in its fulness by the Gods of eternity.
          If we disobey his counsel, disregard his warning voice, and are
          careless respecting his teachings and the teachings of those
          associated with him, we are indeed unworthy of the presence of
          personages who have been glorified and who now dwell in the
          presence of God. I do not expect the day to come when this people
          will be favored with the administration of angels--with the
          presence of those holy and immortal beings--until we can learn to
          appreciate the teachings and instructions of the men of God in
          our midst. When that day does come that this people will
          implicitly obey the voice of those whom God has placed over them,
          and give heed to every instruction imparted to them by the spirit
          of revelation through the servants of God, then I shall expect
          visits from holy angels, and the glory and power of God to rest
          upon us to that extent it has never done hitherto; but I cannot
          well expect it before that time arrives, because if these
          blessings were to be bestowed upon us before we are prepared to
          receive them, I should fear they would turn to our condemnation,
          as they have done to many in the early history of this Church.
          There is nothing that we, as a people, have needed since our
          settlement in these valleys, and I may say since the organization
          of the Church, connected with the kingdom of God, in
          intelligence, in wisdom and counsel, that we have had to wait
          for. We have had line upon line, precept upon precept, here a
          little and there a little, from the beginning unto the present
          time, and there never was a day, an hour, a moment, from the
          organization of this Church unto the present time that we, as a
          people, have been destitute of the voice of God and the
          instruction of the Holy Ghost. While this is the case, and we
          have abundance of teachings poured out upon us, and we should
          refuse to obey any of them, we need not expect visitations from
          higher personages, coming down to administer unto us and impart
          unto us things that we could know, if we would only learn to be
          obedient to the counsels and instructions we now receive. It is
          necessary that we should be taught and instructed in the things
          of the kingdom of God, and that our faith should be developed to
          such an extent that we will have great confidence in those who
          labor in our midst and who preside over us. It is for this
          purpose that the Gospel is sent forth by the hand of the servants
          of God unto the inhabitants of the earth. The Lord says through
          his servant Joseph Smith, in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants,
          "Wherefore I, the Lord, knowing the calamity which should come
          upon the inhabitants of the earth, called upon my servant Joseph
          Smith, jun., and spake unto him from heaven, and gave him
          commandments; and also gave commandments to others, that they
          should proclaim these things unto the world, and all this that it
          might be fulfilled which was written by the prophets; the weak
          things of the world shall come forth and break down the mighty
          and strong ones, that man should not counsel his fellow man,
          neither trust in the arm of flesh, but that every man might speak
          in the name of God the Lord, even the Saviour of the world; that
          faith also might increase in the earth; that mine everlasting
          covenant might be established; that the fulness of my Gospel
          might be proclaimed by the weak and the simple unto the ends of
          the world, and before kings and rulers."
          This is the reason of the Gospel being preached, that faith might
          increase within us, and that the New and Everlasting Covenant
          might be established in our midst. These things were preached
          unto us in the beginning, because it is necessary that man should
          be impressed with the importance of the Gospel and plan of
          salvation which God has revealed, and that he might have
          confidence in the words of the servants of God. We have to learn
          that those who are worthy to be entrusted with our salvation, and
          with the direction of the affairs of the kingdom of God, are also
          worthy to be entrusted with the guidance of temporal affairs in
          the same kingdom. It was a difficult lesson to learn in the
          beginning. The people of God could not understand, in the
          beginning, that Brother Joseph had wisdom sufficient to direct
          them in their temporal affairs as well as in their spiritual
          affairs. While the Church was in Kirtland it was a lesson they
          had not learned; they could admit that Joseph was a prophet of
          God, and chosen of Him to establish His kingdom on the earth, but
          they would not admit that he had wisdom sufficient to direct them
          in temporal affairs, and they had to be whipped, scourged, and
          driven from place to place before they could really believe that
          the servants of God had this wisdom; but, by-and-by, this
          knowledge dawned upon them, and they began to see that men,
          chosen of God to establish righteousness and build up His
          kingdom, had also wisdom concerning temporal affairs, and that
          the same God who made the earth so beautiful for the habitation
          of His saints--He who organized the heavens and controls the
          movements of the heavenly bodies, that same God had power to give
          Brother Smith wisdom to guide them in temporal affairs. This is a
          lesson that we have had taught unto us from that time until the
          present; and to-day I feel as though we were but poor scholars,
          and that there are many things yet to be impressed upon our
          understandings connected with this lesson. 
          We have to learn that, in the first place, the Lord sent His
          servants forth to preach the principles of the Gospel, to impress
          upon the inhabitants of the earth the necessity of believing in
          Jesus Christ as the Saviour of the world, repenting of their
          sins, and being baptized for the remission of them, and receive
          the Holy Ghost by the laying on of hands, and it was hoped and
          expected that when the Holy Ghost descended upon men and women
          they would be filled with the spirit of obedience, and that their
          understandings would be so awakened that they would begin to
          comprehend the object God had in view in restoring the
          everlasting Gospel to the earth. It has had that effect, but it
          has been slowly manifested; it has dawned upon us ray by ray,
          gradually opening our minds to the comprehension of the great
          work the Lord has established on the earth; and to-day, after
          years of experience, the Church of Christ has barely commenced to
          comprehend the great work God had in view in establishing His
          kingdom on the earth. But we are learning it now more rapidly
          than we have in past years. The knowledge is being brought home
          to us to a greater extent, because we are in a position where we
          can be better taught these things than before. We are beginning
          to understand that there is something, besides that which
          concerns our spiritual welfare, needed for the upbuilding of the
          kingdom of God on the earth; we begin to understand that the Lord
          wishes us to be a people wise in the arts and sciences, full of
          understanding and wisdom in the building up of cities, in the
          erection of beautiful habitations and magnificent temples, and in
          the exhumation of minerals from the bowels of the earth, and
          their proper application for the beautifying of the cities of
          Zion and the convenience of God's people. We begin to understand
          that the Gospel has been revealed to show unto us the object of
          our existence, that it affects every action of our lives from
          birth to the grave, and that we cannot do anything but what is
          comprehended in the Gospel. We hope our children will learn this
          lesson better than we have, and to a greater perfection than we
          have learned it. As I have said, it is necessary in the first
          place that we should have confidence in the servants of God--in
          the affairs that pertain unto our eternal salvation, and we would
          suppose we might trust them with the direction of our temporal
          affairs, if, indeed, temporal and spiritual can be divided, which
          really cannot be done. 
          There is one point we should be guarded against, and the brethren
          have endeavored to impress it upon our minds, that is, in our
          seeking to develop the resources of the earth and build up cities
          and temples and the various works that are incumbent on us, that
          we should not forget to keep our minds right before the Lord,
          that we should have his Holy Spirit abiding within us. When the
          cares of every day life increase upon us, in the business of
          forming settlements, pioneering and performing our labors from
          day to day, we are too apt to forget that we should constantly
          seek to God with the same fervor and diligence for His aid as we
          do for spiritual blessings. I find that I have to be careful
          while engaged in business, for I know that the tendency of my
          mind is to devote all my thoughts and all my time and attention
          to the business that is in hand--that happens to occupy my
          attention at the time. This is the tendency of people generally,
          and we have to guard against it, and for which we have to be
          reproved, that we may not yield to it to so great and extent as
          to drive the Spirit of God from us. There is no necessity for
          this. If we grieve the Spirit of God when we are performing our
          temporal duties, it is because we allow the one idea to absorb
          our attention too much. While we are engaged in these duties, we
          should have the Spirit of God resting upon us, as if we were
          engaged in preaching the Gospel.
          It is recorded in the Book of Mormon that when the Nephites were
          oppressed by the Lamanites, who would not suffer them to pray
          orally unto God, they prayed in their hearts, while engaged in
          their labors, for the blessings of God to be granted unto them,
          for His deliverance to be extended to them, ant that their
          enemies might not have power to hold them in bondage; and the
          word of the Lord came to them and whispered peace, and told them
          that the day of their deliverance was nigh at hand, the day in
          which He would emancipate them from the thraldom of their
          enemies. This is a good example for us to follow. It is possible
          for us to bring ourselves into such a condition that we can pray
          unto God in our hearts, no matter what labor we are performing.
          We are exhorted to pray constantly unto Him, and it is possible
          for us to concentrate our thoughts on the things of God while we
          are doing our labor, and our thanksgivings can ascend silently
          unto God, and they are not unheard by Him, and His blessing can
          descend upon us, and His joy can fill our hearts, and we can
          become the happiest and the most blessed people upon all the face
          of the earth. I know it requires a struggle to concentrate our
          thoughts on the things of the kingdom of God, while we are
          engaged in business; but this is one of the things which we have
          to train ourselves to and to overcome.
          I am pleased to see our people developing the resources of the
          earth as they are. It is gratifying to see them enjoying the
          blessings of the earth, to see them wearing clothing of home
          manufacture, and to see their houses carpeted with home-made
          carpets; to see the sisters wearing beautiful dresses, spun with
          their own hands, is more pretty to my mind than brocade silk or
          satin, or fine cloth imported from foreign parts. In these things
          I can see the independence of our people being gradually secured.
          I will bring my remarks to a close, praying God to bless you, my
          brethren and sisters, and those who may speak unto us, and to
          fill them with His Holy Spirit, and also those who listen to
          their sayings, that their hearts may rejoice together with
          exceeding great joy before Him, which is my prayer in the name of
          Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / Orson
          Hyde, December 18, 1864
                            Orson Hyde, December 18, 1864
                                       ON THE
          Remarks by Elder Orson Hyde, made in the Tabernacle in Great Salt
                      Lake City, on Sunday, December 18, 1864.
                              Reported by E. L. Sloan.
          I feel thankful, my brethren and sisters, for the privilege of
          once more meeting with you in this tabernacle. I feel thankful
          that so many of us are spared to meet together.
          I need not reiterate in your hearing, that we are living in a
          most important day and age of the world, equally important to the
          Saints of the Most High as to the rest of mankind; for the
          present is fraught with events that should admonish us to live
          near to the Lord, and to keep ourselves unspotted from the world.
          We have been tried in adversity. Many of us know what it is to be
          in the very depths of poverty and privation; and we now seem to
          have advanced into a measurable prosperity, in order that we may
          be proved and tried in another manner, and let it be known in the
          heavens and to the just on the earth whether we are able to abide
          prosperity as well as adversity.
          There are so many things before me and in my mind, that I hardly
          know what to speak upon and call your attention to. I do not know
          that it matters much, for the Saints are interested in everything
          that is good, comforting, and cheering to the heart. I will say,
          however, that what was written beforetime was written for our
          profit and instruction, that we, through an understanding
          thereof, might have patience and hope. A great enterprise was
          determined upon by our Heavenly Father, and for this purpose he
          seemed to have inspired a certain individual with the
          manifestations of his will in dreams, and visions of the day,
          perhaps, also, of the night, and that individual was Joseph of
          old. It appears that in this son of the Patriarch Jacob, the
          germs of greatness and power were manifest, not only to himself
          in his own reflections and thoughts, and by reason of the
          manifestations he received of the Divine will, but, also, to the
          satisfaction of his brethren, that he was likely to aspire to, or
          be elevated to, dominion and government over them. This roused
          their envy and jealousy until they could not endure his presence.
          They sought to rid themselves of him, and contrived various plans
          and means to accomplish it, especially after he had told them his
          dream, that their sheaves had made obeisance to his sheaf as they
          were binding in the harvest-field. And then, to cap the climax,
          he told them he had had another dream, in which the sun and the
          moon and the eleven stars had made obeisance to him. Not only was
          he to have dominion and power over his brethren, but his father
          and mother, as well, were to recognize his power.
          This created a jealousy that was satisfied only in his separation
          from them, and they sold him to certain Ishmaelitish merchants,
          who bore him away, a slave, into Egypt. Little did they think, as
          they saw him take his departure with the camels of those
          merchants, that he was but a pioneer to open a way before them,
          and that they would actually have to follow on his track and seek
          succor at his hands. But in process of time it proved to be true,
          for the country from which he had been expelled, sold as a
          bondman and thrust away by force, was visited by famine, and he,
          by the interposition of Providence, was elevated to power in the
          land to which he had been banished. He had become a prince in
          that land, and its revenue and riches were under his control. His
          brethren were forced by famine to go down there; so were his
          father and their little ones. When they came to him and found him
          occupying a princely state, it was overwhelming to them. They
          bowed down to him. He was a prince! The Almighty had blessed him
          and made him strong in the land to which they had banished him.
          Their very jealousy and envy had placed him on the road to
          greatness and power, and they were themselves compelled to seek
          succor from the brother they had hated and banished.
          I have adverted to but few circumstances connected with the
          history of these individuals, for it would consume too much time
          to enter further into them. But enough has been said to show you
          the analogy that follows: We have been expelled from a certain
          country because our enemies discovered in us germs of power and
          greatness which aroused their jealousy and hatred, and they were
          determined to be rid of us. When they saw us leaving, to cross
          the vast plains that stretched before us, as we turned our backs
          upon the homes we had made with much labor and toil, they
          flattered themselves that they were rid of any dominion of ours,
          either real or imaginary. But little did they think when they
          were doing so, that they were forcing us on to a track they would
          have eventually to travel themselves. This was hid from their
          The Saints did cross the plains to leave that country, and here
          we are; and who better than ourselves can appreciate the
          circumstances that now attend us? The Almighty has blessed us in
          this country; He has poured His blessings bounteously upon us,
          for which every heart here should beat with gratitude to the Most
          High. While war is desolating the country from which we came, we
          are here in peace, for which we should be thankful now that we
          are here. That element that drove us away, not, perhaps, the
          first, but that very element is beginning to follow in our track.
          What is its policy? The policy, no doubt, is to cease to invade
          us by force or arms. But another is adopted, more easily
          accomplished. What is it? Why, "We will oil our lips, and smooth
          our tongues, and ingratiate ourselves into your favor; we will
          mingle and co-mingle with you as brothers, and lead you away; we
          will contaminate you, and by pouring wealth into your laps, we
          will make you indifferent to your God, your faith, and your
          covenants." The object is to destroy those germs of greatness
          which Heaven has planted in our souls, at which they feel
          alarmed--germs of greatness which, if cultivated, will lead us to
          wield a power to which the nations will have to bow, as the
          nations had to bow to that Joseph who was sold into Egypt. 
          Another circumstance I will call your attention to. In the first
          place, every great enterprise is attended with its difficulties,
          its hardships, and oppositions, for there must needs be
          opposition in all things. We are told that in the year 1492 this
          American continent was discovered by Christopher Columbus. Look
          at the exertions made by him to obtain the necessary means to
          effect the discovery. It required ships, means, and men to enable
          him to make his way across the trackless deep to find a country
          which, to him, seemed necessary to balance the earth. The Spirit
          of God came upon him, and he had no rest day nor night until he
          accomplished what the Spirit wrought upon him to do. He went
          first to one place and then to another to procure help. He
          applied to different crowned heads, and received rebuffs and
          discouragements. He was poor; the plans of Jehovah are mostly
          carried out by humble and poor individuals. So it was with
          Columbus; he was poor, but daring and persevering, and with a
          soul formed within his bosom to undertake and prosecute the great
          enterprise that was to bring to light a vast continent reserved
          in the providence of God as the theatre of great events in a
          period that was then in the future. By the aid of Ferdinand and
          Isabella of Spain he obtained three small vessels, old and almost
          rotten, poorly manned and badly provisioned. It was not because
          they believed he would be successful, but like the unjust judge
          with the poor widow, they desired to get rid of his
          importunities. The unjust judge had no very strong feelings in
          favor of the widow, but that he might be rid of her importunings,
          he hearkened to her prayer. So did they serve Columbus. They said
          they would fit him out and send him away, and he might go on his
          explorations for the imaginary country he fancied lay towards the
          west. If they had had any faith that he would be successful, they
          would have fitted him out with the best ships that any navies of
          the time could have afforded, manned with sufficient men and
          supplied with all the necessary equipments; and then they would
          have said, "Go and prosper, and the God of the seas pioneer your
          course." But they had no faith in the enterprise; they wanted to
          stop his importunings and get rid of him.
          When we look back at our history we find a certain analogy in it
          to that of this man. Our enemies wanted to get rid of us. We
          applied to the powers that were for aid and succor. What did we
          receive in response to our applications? Silence in some cases;
          contempt in others. And when we had to sell out, it was not with
          old rotten ships that they paid us, but with old rotten wagons,
          old spavined horses, and other things equally worthless. Then
          they said, "Go and do the best you can." They thought they had
          given us an outfit that would last us until our destruction would
          be consummated; they imagined it would last us until we got
          beyond what they pleased to call civilization; but thinking that,
          perhaps, we might live through all, they demanded five hundred of
          our best men, while in camp in the wilderness, leaving our camp
          to the care of cripples and old men and women, in the midst of an
          Indian country. But we lived.
          Little did Ferdinand and Isabella think that Columbus was leading
          the way that all Europe would have to follow. If they had so
          thought, they would have given him better ships and a better
          outfit. But when they found he had opened a new country, rich and
          bountifully productive, behold the surface of the ocean was
          whitened with the sails of vessels, bearing their living freights
          crowding to seek fortune on the new continent that spread itself
          invitingly before them. All Europe, figuratively speaking,
          followed in his track, and spread themselves over the face of the
          land. But see what these adventurers have come to. This country,
          discovered by him, is enveloped in war; and if you live a few
          years longer, you will see much of the land that has been blessed
          with unequalled prosperity, from the east to the west, a
          wilderness and a desolation; and this will be in consequence of
          the abuse of the blessings bestowed upon it by those who enjoyed
          them. If I mistake not, a certain Senator said to a Senator from
          Louisiana, "What are you going to do with Louisiana?" "Why," was
          the reply, "Louisiana was a wilderness when we bought her from
          France, and if she secede we will make her a wilderness again."
          If the land does not become a wilderness and a desolation, we do
          not see correctly--we do not understand correctly the revelations
          which the Almighty has given us. The Scripture says, that in the
          last days His people will go forth and build up the waste places
          of Zion. But they must first be made desolate, before they can be
          called "the waste places of Zion." Then the hands of the Saints
          will be required to build them up.
          Compare the coming of the Saints here with the banishment of
          Joseph into Egypt, and the manner in which Columbus was sent off
          on his perilous exploration, and note the conclusion that
          follows. The world dreaded the germs of greatness which they saw
          in the Saints. They dreaded the power that seemed to attend them.
          They were almost at war with us because we were united. They
          disliked the idea of our being politically one. They wanted us to
          be of different parties. But when they saw we were united, they
          said, "There is a power that is destined to make them great, to
          exalt them." And let me say here to the Saints, be you united and
          be one with your leader, and you will as surely ascend to power
          and elevation in the earth as Joseph of old did in the land of
          Egypt. We are here, and in unity. We are not destroyed. When I
          look at our condition at the present time, I cannot but feel that
          we should be thankful to the Lord every day of our lives.
          I was once in business, in the East, in the mercantile line, and
          we used to sell our common unbleached factory at 16 2-3rd cents
          a-yard. A yard of factory brought a bushel of oats. When I see
          that the Saints can now get three yards of factory for a bushel
          of oats--three times as much for their produce in this
          "God-forsaken country," so called by some, as we could get when
          we were in the east, I have said, what but the hand of God could
          have done it? I feel that the hand of God is over this people.
          Then why, in the day of prosperity, should we permit our hearts
          to run after the things of this world, and not permit our
          feelings and affections to be centred in this kingdom, and use
          the riches of this world as we use the waters of the ocean,--not
          enter into them to be engulphed by them, but glide over them to
          power and greatness as the ship moves onward to her destined
          I am glad of the privilege of being with you to-day, and of
          speaking a few words to you. In fact, I never felt more thankful
          to God, nor had feelings of greater joy in the principles of life
          than I have to-day. I feel glad that I am counted worthy to bear
          the name of my master Jesus. We are doing our best to build up
          the kingdom of our God in that part of the Territory where my
          time is principally spent, and I presume you are doing the same
          here. I say to the Saints, in the day of prosperity beware of
          pride, beware of worldly mindedness, beware that we be not
          ensnared by the things of this world. Let me tell you, the
          judgments of the Almighty are beginning to be poured out upon the
          nations of the earth. A great portion of the nations that will
          not repent will be eventually swept away before the just
          judgments of Heaven. And if the Elders are sent forth to bear the
          truth to the nations, they will go, as it were, in the trough of
          a wave, as the billows of tribulation and destruction pass over
          the nations, retiring before another wave comes; and thus, by the
          voice of mercy and the words of truth, the nations will be
          prepared for their doom.
          Brethren and sisters, be faithful,--be true to the Lord our God.
          Though you should not get so much of this world's goods, be sure
          your hearts are in unison with the God of Heaven. May the peace
          of Israel be and abide with you, and with those who guide the
          destinies of Israel from this time henceforth and for ever. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 /
          Brigham Young, January 8, 1865
                           Brigham Young, January 8, 1865
                       FOR FUTURE GLORY.--DANGER OF APOSTACY.
          Remarks by President Brigham Young, delivered in the Tabernacle, 
                       Great Salt Lake City, January 8, 1865.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          I am more and more convinced of the inability of man to receive
          intelligence to any great amount at any one time. Some have an
          understanding of what they commit to the keeping of their
          memories, while others commit to repeat again, and that is the
          end of it. Some can remember things for years that have been told
          them, and still not understand what was told them; while others
          can receive more into their understandings, and retain more in
          their memories, than others can, and still not be qualified to
          repeat that which they can remember and understand. Why I make
          these remarks is, because that I see around me, and feel within
          me, the defects which are occasioned by the weakness which is in
          man through the fall. I would not, however, say that a person
          entirely free from the effects of the fall of man could learn
          knowledge to any great amount at one time, though he might be
          able to learn more than a man would who is under the influence of
          the fall.
          I will make a few remarks, in the first place, in regard to the
          ordinance of administering bread and wine, which ordinance we
          attend to every first day of the week. This is a very solemn
          ordinance. The Christian world accepts it, in preference to any
          other, as one of the ordinances of the house of God. With some,
          this ordinance is the first and the last; and with others this
          ordinance is not thought to be of sufficient importance to be
          attended to. I wish to say to the Latter-day Saints, and also to
          those who do not believe in the fulness of the Gospel, that this
          ordinance, which we are now attending to this afternoon, is, in
          reality, no more sacred than any other ordinance of the house of
          God in the eyes of Him who has instituted the same. The validity
          of one divine law is the same as the validity of another with our
          Father and God. We partake of bread and water to witness that we
          remember Jesus Christ, who gave his life a ransom for us, and
          that we are willing to keep His commandments. He has said, "Do
          this in remembrance of me," when He ate His last supper with His
          disciples; and He also said, "But I say unto you, I will not
          drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I
          drink it new with you in my Father's kingdom." We should desire
          to remember Him in all sincerity, and when we partake of these
          emblems, do it with an eye single to His glory, and to the
          building up of His kingdom, also for our own perfection,
          salvation, and glorification therein. In like manner we should
          receive and obey all the ordinances of the house of God; and I
          hope and trust that we shall live to our profession so strictly,
          and so closely adhere to the commandments of the Lord, that we
          shall never hear the painful sound that Saints and sinners are
          one; this I should abhor. I pray that the Latter-day Saints will
          live so that God, Jesus Christ, and the angels will love them,
          and the devil and all his hosts will hate them. I have never yet
          been able to discover in all my researches in sacred history that
          a Gospel hater, a Jesus Christ hater, and a God hater ever spoke
          well of Saints, either in the former or in the latter days, but
          have ever sought occasion against them from the most trifling
          circumstances. We have an instance of this, when the disciples of
          Jesus, in passing through the cornfield, being hungry, began to
          pluck the ears of corn, and eat; the Pharisees, seeing this, said
          to Jesus, "Behold, thy disciples do that which is not lawful to
          do upon the Sabbath day." You may read at your leisure the answer
          of the Savior. This was a trick of the devil to bring evil upon
          Jesus and His disciples. Satan and his followers think no better
          of the Saints now than they did in the life time of the Savior,
          and I hope never to see the day when they will find favor in the
          eyes of the wicked. It is true, some will backslide, leave the
          Church of Jesus Christ, and receive the spirit of the world and
          the love of it, and, finally, be lost; but the great body of the
          Saints, I most fervently believe, will never amalgamate with
          I will now say a few words relating to the subject which was
          presented to the people this morning. Inquiries were made by the
          speaker, why we have not seen God; why we are subject to sin; why
          we are in this fallen world? I will briefly answer these queries.
          If our Father and God should be disposed to walk through one of
          these aisles, we should not know him from one of the
          congregation. You would see a man, and that is all you would know
          about him; you would merely know Him as a stranger from some
          neighboring city or country. This is the character of Him whom we
          worship and acknowledge as our Father and God: when He is
          disposed to visit a house, a neighborhood, or a congregation, He
          does it at His pleasure; and although He may be seen by mortals
          in this character, yet no man can see Him in His glory and live.
          When the Lord sends an angel to visit men, He gives him power and
          authority to appear to the people as a man, and not as an angel
          in his glory; for we could not endure the presence even of an
          angel in his glory. No mortal man has ever seen God in His glory
          at any time and lived. We may have seen the Lord and angels many
          times, and did not know it. I will be satisfied with seeing and
          associating with His children whom I now behold, for there is not
          a son or daughter of Adam and Eve before me to-day but what is
          the offspring of that God we worship. He is our Heavenly Father;
          He is also our God, and the Maker and upholder of all things in
          heaven and on earth. He sends forth His counsels and extends His
          providences to all living. He is the Supreme Controller of the
          universe. At His rebuke the sea is dried up, and the rivers
          become a wilderness. He measures the waters in the hollow of His
          hand, and meteth out heaven with a span, and comprehendeth the
          dust of the earth in a measure, and weigheth the mountains in
          scales, and the hills in a balance; the nations to Him are as a
          drop in a bucket, and He taketh up the isles as a very little
          thing; the hairs of our heads are numbered by Him, and not a
          sparrow falleth to the ground without our Father; and He knoweth
          every thought and intent of the hearts of all living, for He is
          everywhere present by the power of His Spirit--His minister the
          Holy Ghost. He is the Father of all, is above all, through all,
          and in you all; He knoweth all things pertaining to this earth,
          and He knows all things pertaining to millions of earths like
          The Lord Jesus Christ might come among us and we would not know
          Him; and if he were to come in our midst and speak unto us
          to-day, we might suppose Him to be one of our returned
          missionaries; and if He was to make himself known unto us, some
          might say to Him, as it was said by one of old, "Lord, show us
          the Father, and it sufficeth us." He would simply say, "He that
          hath seem me hath seen the Father, and how sayest thou, then,
          shew us the Father?" It is written of Jesus, that, besides His
          being the brightness of His Father's glory, He is also "the
          express image of His person." The knowledge of the character of
          the Only Begotten of the Father comes to us through the
          testimony, not of disinterested witnesses, but of His friends,
          those who were most especially and deeply interested for their
          own welfare, and the welfare of their brethren. We have no
          testimony concerning the Savior's character and works, only from
          those who were thus interested in His welfare and success, and in
          the building up of His kingdom. It has been often said, if a
          disinterested witness would testify that Joseph Smith is a
          prophet of God, many might believe his testimony; but no person
          could be believed, by any intelligent person, who would testify
          to a matter of such importance, and who would still view it as a
          thing in which he had no interest. But they who are interested,
          who know the worth of that man and understand the spirit and the
          power of his mission, and the character of the Being that sent
          and ordained him, are the proper persons to testify of the truth
          of his mission, and the character of the Being that sent and
          ordained him, are the proper persons to testify of the truth of
          his mission, and they are the most interested of any living upon
          the earth. So it was with those who bore witness of the Savior,
          and of His mission on the earth.
          If Jesus should veil His glory and appear before you as a man,
          and witness of himself as being the image of his Father, would
          you believe that he was really Jesus Christ and that he told you
          the truth? And if you believed His words, would you not wonder
          exceedingly to hear that our Father and God is an organized being
          after the fashion of man's organization in every respect? Such,
          however, is the case. One of the prophets describes the Father of
          us all, saying, "I beheld till the thrones were cast down, and
          the Ancient of days did sit, whose garment was white as snow, and
          the hair of his head like the pure wool; his throne was like the
          fiery flame," etc. The prophet further says, "thousand thousands
          ministered unto him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood
          before him," etc. Again, "and, behold, one like the Son of Man
          came with the clouds of heaven and came to the Ancient of days,
          and they brought him near before him." Now, who is this Ancient
          of days? You may answer this question at your pleasure, I have
          already told the people. But the Savior would answer the question
          as to the appearance of the Father of us all, by saying, "Look at
          me, for I am the very express image of My Father." Then if the
          Father is precisely like his Son Jesus Christ, where is the man
          here in the flesh that is precisely like the Savior? We have not
          seen Him in person, but there are men on the earth who have seen
          Him in vision. As to whether the Savior has got a body or not is
          no question with those who possess the gift and power of the Holy
          Ghost, and are endowed with the Holy Priesthood; they know that
          he was a man in the flesh, and is now a man in the heavens; He
          was a man subject to sin, to temptation, and to weaknesses; but
          He is now a man that is above all this--a man in perfection.
          And what shall we say of our Heavenly Father? He is also a man in
          perfection, and the father of the man Jesus Christ, and the
          father of our spirits; He lives far above the influence and power
          of sin, and holds in his hands the destinies of all. We have not
          seen the person of the Father, neither have we seen that of the
          Son; but we have seen the children of the Father, and the
          brethren of the Savior, who are in every way like them in
          physical appearance and organization. Although mankind of the
          same color look alike, yet there exist expressions of the
          features by which one person can be distinguished from another.
          The human family all resemble one another in the main
          characteristics of humanity, and all resemble the Savior who died
          for us; and could we see him in the flesh, as he appeared to the
          ancients, we should very likely find that some men are more like
          him that others in feature and form, as we often see men who are
          more like Joseph Smith than others are. God is our Father, Jesus
          Christ is our Elder Brother, and we are all brethren, and of one
          family, and our Heavenly Father is subjecting us to sin, misery,
          pain, and death for the exquisite enjoyment of an exaltation.
          This will answer my mind for the present with regard to the
          character of our Father and our God, and with regard to our
          The reason of our being made subject to sin and misery, pain,
          woe, and death, is, that we may become acquainted with the
          opposites of happiness and pleasure. The absence of light brings
          darkness, and darkness an appreciation of light; pain an
          appreciation of ease and comfort; and ignorance, falsehood,
          folly, and sin, in comparison with wisdom, knowledge,
          righteousness, and truth, make the latter the more desirable to
          mankind. Facts are made apparent to the human mind by their
          opposites. We find ourselves surrounded in this mortality by an
          almost endless combination of opposites, through which we must
          pass to gain experience and information to fit us for an eternal
          progression. Those who are enlightened by the spirit of truth,
          have no difficulty in seeing the propriety and the benefit to us
          of this state of things. Like heavenly beings, we are endowed
          with the power of free volition; for God has given to mankind
          their agency, making them amenable to him for their sins, and
          entitling them to blessings and rewards for the good they do, and
          according to their faith in him. It is the wish of our Heavenly
          Father to bring all his children back into his presence. The
          spirits of all the human family dwelt with him before they took
          tabernacles of flesh and became subject to the fall and to sin.
          He is their spiritual Father, and has sent them here to be
          clothed with flesh, and to be subject, with their tabernacles, to
          the ills that afflict fallen humanity. When they have proved
          themselves faithful in all things, and worthy before Him, they
          can then have the privilege of returning again to his presence,
          with their bodies, to dwell in the abodes of the blessed. If man
          could have been made perfect, in his double capacity of body and
          spirit, without passing through the ordeals of mortality, there
          would have been no necessity of our coming into this state of
          trial and suffering. Could the Lord have glorified his children
          in spirit, without a body like his own, he no doubt would have
          done so.
          We read that there is nothing impossible with God. In a broad
          sense there is not; but in another sense there are things he
          never attempted and never will. He will not exalt a spirit to
          thrones, to immortality, and eternal lives, unless that spirit is
          first clothed in mortal flesh, and with it, passes through a
          mortal probation, and overcomes the world, the flesh, and the
          devil through the atonement made by Jesus Christ and the power of
          the Gospel. The spirit must be clothed as He is, or it never can
          be glorified with him. He must of necessity subject his children
          to the same, through a strict observance of the ordinances and
          rules of salvation. To attain to this glory, it is required that
          we love and honor his name, reverence his character and the
          ordinances of his house, and never speak lightly of him, of his
          Son Jesus Christ, or of those who bear His Priesthood; never
          speaking evil of dignities, who are clothed with the authority of
          Heaven; for to all such it will be said, "Depart from me, ye
          cursed," etc. I say to all, honor God and his Holy Priesthood,
          which he bestows upon mankind expressly for the purpose of
          bringing them again into his presence, with their resurrected and
          renewed tabernacles, for exaltation and glory.
          I cannot on the present occasion say all that I would on these
          matters. The riches of eternity and the marrow of life are
          embraced in them; they are full of life to all who desire life,
          they will increase life to those who live, and give life to those
          who seem to have no life. It is as easy to understand these
          principles when the mind is opened by the Spirit of the Almighty,
          as it is to understand one of the simple lessons in the child's
          first reader. Here are some of the twelve apostles listening to
          what I have to say; they have heard me speak at length upon these
          doctrines, and they have been taught from time to time for years
          past. The speaker this morning possessed a sweet, loving spirit,
          and gave us a lovely discourse, but did not think of these things
          which have been told him time and time again. I would exhort my
          brethren to read the Scriptures, and seek earnestly for the
          Spirit of the Almighty to understand them; and this great
          subject, at which I have merely glanced, will appear to them in
          all its simplicity and grandeur. Let each man so live that he may
          know these things for himself, and be always ready to give a
          reason of the hope within him to all who may ask it. I am trying
          to be a Latter-day Saint, and I think I shall conquer. I may come
          short in a thousand things; but I think I shall receive my reward
          as a faithful servant of God, which I hope to do, and I also hope
          you will. Let us live so that we may still add to our present
          stock of knowledge, and have the disposition within us to do even
          better than we have hitherto done; although I do not know that I
          could do better than I have done since I have been in this
          kingdom: if I were to live my life over again, I should be afraid
          to try it, lest I might make the matter worse instead of better.
          Let us live so that the oracles of truth, the words of life, and
          the power of God shall dwell within us constantly. You will not
          hold these remarks long in your memories, and although they are
          printed and you can read them at your leisure, yet they may lie
          upon the book shelf neglected, and the mind remain barren of the
          true information they contain.
          The whole world has gone after Lucifer; they follow the lusts of
          their eyes and the wicked desires of their depraved minds; they
          have all gone after sin, except a few, and all hell seems bent on
          making those few apostatize from the truth; but they cannot
          destroy the kingdom of God. Some few will be dazzled by the
          tinsel show and fair pretensions of the world, and be led away
          from the truth by the silken cords of the enemy of all
          righteousness; but they do not know the misery of the world. When
          they get into hell, they would be willing to be preached to, that
          they might get out, if they could. It would be well for all who
          wish to apostatize to do so, and give your room for others who
          want it. We are told that we must be tried in all things; there
          may yet remain a few things in which we have not yet been tried,
          and in some things we have been tried pretty well.
          Who is for God and his kingdom? I can tell you truly that there
          are more for the kingdom of God than there are against it. This
          is a pleasing reflection. We have on former occasions made known
          to the people the state of the wicked after death; if they will
          not listen to the testimony of the servants of God, let them
          taste of the sufferings of the damned and drink of the bitter cup
          to the dregs, and then they will very likely call for mercy. May
          the pure in heart ever be enabled, through the mercy of the Lord,
          to shun suffering, and not be obliged to pass through the great
          misery that many will who have turned away from the truth,
          forsaken the principles of life and salvation, and their God,
          until they are destroyed. This we cannot help. Let the pure in
          heart, and all those who desire the truth, magnify their calling,
          and they will have all the sorrow and misery they want. Still,
          the faithful servants and handmaidens of the Almighty never have,
          nor never will, suffer like the wicked have and will. The
          Latter-day Saints, in all their drivings, and persecutions, and
          sufferings in consequence thereof, have not begun to suffer the
          distress, the heart wringing, the great woe and slaughter that
          now spread gloom over our once happy land. If we could behold at
          one glance the suffering that is endured in one day through the
          war which is now depopulating some of the fairest portions of the
          land, we should become sick at heart and cry to God to close the
          vision. It is the kingdom of God or nothing with us, and by the
          help of the Almighty we shall bear it off triumphantly to all
          nations, gather Israel, build up Zion, redeem Israel, and Jesus
          Christ will triumph, and we shall reign with him on the earth,
          and possess it and all its fulness with him. May the Lord bless
          you. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / George
          Q. Cannon, November 27, 1864
                         George Q. Cannon, November 27, 1864
                         OF STRIVING TO INCREASE OUR FAITH.
            Remarks by Elder George Q. Cannon, made in the Tabernacle in
             Great Salt Lake City, Sunday afternoon, November 27, 1864.
                              Reported by E. L. Sloan.
          The remarks made by the brethren this afternoon, and all through
          the day, have been to me exceedingly edifying and instructive. If
          I could impart to you one tenth of the feelings and reflections
          that have been awakened in me by them, I would be satisfied. So
          many points have been touched upon that I think every person
          present has felt to rejoice for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit
          which we have enjoyed. There is one point in relation to the
          great work with which we are identified, and its further
          movements, to which I wish to refer. It has been alluded to this
          afternoon that some entertain the idea that we may have to leave
          these upper valleys and retire to the more southern ones before
          our enemies. For my part, I cannot believe this. I never have
          believed it. I believe we are in the very place which God
          designed we should occupy; and I believe with all my heart the
          words of President Young, when he spoke respecting our movement
          south and the sacrifice we made of our homes here, which we were
          willing to put the torch to and burn sooner than our enemies
          should possess them. He said, when we came back again, that we
          had begun to return,--to retrace our steps in the path we had
          been compelled to tread by the inhumanity of our enemies, and we
          would re-occupy the lands from which we have been driven. I felt
          then that it was true, and still feel so; and, to me, it looks
          like childishness for any of us to cease improving the advantages
          our Father and God has given us in this valley and in the valleys
          north, south, east, and west.
          The Lord has blessed us to a very great extent. He has constantly
          poured out upon his servants the spirit of instruction and
          revelation. There has been no move that it has been necessary for
          us, as a people, to make that we have not been forewarned of by
          our leaders; and when they counsel us to take measures for the
          improvement of our city or the adjacent country, or for doing any
          thing that will make us great and powerful, it is our duty, being
          the mind and will of God, to adhere to and obey their counsels
          and instructions; and he who would think by word, or thought, or
          expression to weaken the effect of that counsel, is an enemy to
          the Zion of our God;--he who would try to weaken the counsels of
          the Presidency is an enemy in disguise, and unless he drives that
          spirit from his heart, he will sooner or later be found arrayed
          in the ranks of the enemies of God and truth. There is but one
          course that can be pursued in safety, and that is the course
          pointed out by those who are placed to preside over us. It may
          seem unnecessary to say so; but it is necessary. It seems, at
          times, as though we had not sufficiently learned the lesson of
          obedience, and it requires the servants of God to continually
          remind us of these things, and impress it upon us that in this
          path alone can we obtain salvation.
          The Lord told us years ago that we were called to lay the
          foundation of a great work. The Latter-day Saint who looks to his
          own benefit alone and does not recognize the extent of the work
          and its influence upon the people--not only upon the people
          gathered together here, but upon the nations of the earth has
          failed to comprehend the position he occupies as a serant of God;
          and, unless he changes his course, instead of increasing in the
          things of God, he will decrease, and the Spirit of the Lord will
          not be with him to the extent it would be, were he alive to his
          duties and responsibilities as a servant of God. We are engaged
          in a work that affects ourselves, our neighbours, our posterity,
          and progenitors, and all the nations of the earth, and it will
          not do to be blinded by petty interests; to think in relation to
          the counsel to bring out the waters of Jordan, for instance, is
          it going to benefit my farm or my city lot? To reason in this way
          betrays a narrowness of mind that does not harmonize with the
          greatness of the work we are engaged in. If we look at matters in
          this light, we are not worthy to occupy the position we hold.
          While Brother Joseph W. Young and Brother Gates were speaking, my
          mind reverted to the history of Joseph, who was sold into Egypt,
          the progenitor, perhaps, of the greatest portion of this
          congregation. An axiom came to my mind, that history repeats
          itself. And the great majority of us who are his descendants are
          not unlikely to accomplish a work similar to that which he
          accomplished. You know what has been meted out to us by our
          brethren. It has been our fortune, like him, to be dreamers. Like
          him, we related our dreams to our brethren, and they acted
          towards us as his brethren did towards him. They said, "We will
          not have this dreamer to rule over us." They put him into a pit,
          and afterwards sold him to the Ishmaelites, and he was carried to
          Egypt, where they thought they would never see him or hear from
          him again. But God overruled their acts, and the fulfilment of
          the dreams for which they sold him into slavery was brought about
          by that very means. So our brethren, instead of owning the truth
          of our visions, acted towards us as the brethren of Joseph did
          towards him. They would not own the power of God, nor look upon
          us as their benefactors, but abused us and treated us cruelly,
          driving us from their midst; yet out of it God will bring
          salvation to the remnant which is left of them.
          You may depend upon it, we are repeating the history of the past.
          We will yet have to feed our brethren in the flesh; we will yet
          be the head and will extend unto them the salvation and
          deliverance, spiritually and temporally, which they need. We can
          see plainly that the Lord is overruling circumstances for the
          accomplishment of this end. Shall we not, then, be willing agents
          in his hands, and seek with all the energy of our nature to do
          what he requires of us? I believe this is the feeling of every
          Latter-day Saint, and those who love righteousness are determined
          in their hearts to do all that is required of them by the
          servants of God. There is no one under the sound of my voice
          to-day but has felt happiness in doing what has been required of
          him by the servants of God. This is the secret of the power
          wielded by President Young over this people. Because they have a
          living and abiding testimony of the Spirit with them when doing
          their duty, their hearts are filled with joy, thanksgiving, and
          happiness; but when they take an opposite course, and go contrary
          to what is required of them by the servants of God, they feel
          miserable, they know they have taken a wrong course, and, if they
          are wise, they repent speedily of their sins and are obedient to
          the counsel given.
          I hope to see the day when we will have land and water, food and
          fruit, and evrything that is pleasing and useful, everything that
          is necessary for the comfort and well-being of man, to enjoy
          ourselves and share with those who come to us and live with us.
          And I know the measures taken by our leaders now will be attended
          with these results, if we abide their counsels. Whenever there
          has been a failure in carying out any measure that has been
          counselled, it has been because of a lack of faith on the part of
          those to whom the counsel has been given. It is time we should
          begin to think what we are going to be, and rise above those
          little petty feelings that are characteristic of the world. We
          should allow our minds to be filled with the Spirit of God to
          such an extent that we can have enlarged thoughts and views. We
          should feel to say that "anything which benefits my brethren and
          sisters, whether it furthers my interests or not, let it be done;
          let the community be blessed, whether my personal interests are
          prospered or not by the course taken." The person who cherishes
          this feeling will be sure to receive temporal prosperity.
          I know we live in the kingdom of God and serve a liberal Master,
          and though we may be called upon to make what we may view as
          sacrifices, if we do so willingly and liberally, God will give to
          us a liberal reward. "The liberal deviseth liberal things, and by
          liberal things shall he stand," was said by one of old, and can
          be said in truth of the day in which we live. If we act upon this
          principle, God will deal with us in a similar manner. I know this
          to be true, and that God will reward us with every blessing we
          need, as a people, if we take the course that is pointed out.
          There is no circumstance or difficulty we have to contend with
          but what is for our good, and will ultimately prove so, if we are
          faithful. No matter what labor we are required to perform, we are
          in the very position, and doing the very work, God requires at
          our hands. It is necessary for our development and increase in
          the faith of the Lord Jesus. This is a glorious consolation to
          I know that everything will be overruled for our good if we do
          right. No matter how difficult circumstances may be to bear at
          the time they are for our good, and God watches over us; his
          angels are round about us all the time. The spirit of prophecy
          and the angels of God are continualy with His servant Brigham;
          and when the people receive and act upon his counsel, it results
          in good to them. May God bless us, and fill us with more faith
          and power, that we may go forth in mighty strength to accomplish
          the work of our God on the earth. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / George
          Albert Smith, January 22, 1865
                        George Albert Smith, January 22, 1865
              Remarks by Elder George A. Smith, made in the Tabernacle,
                   Great Salt Lake City, Sunday, January 22, 1865.
                              Reported by E. L. Sloan.
          We have heard a very practical discourse this afternoon from
          Elder Woodruff, one which is calculated to cause all persons to
          consider for themselves whether they are pursuing such a course
          as is in accordance with the law of righteousness, instead of
          following the wickedness spoken of which exists in the world.
          Considerable has been said on various occasions to show us that
          great efforts have been made to teach the principles of religion,
          and to make known to the children of men what they should do to
          be saved; but professing Christians have unfortunately become
          very much divided in their opinions as to the proper way of
          obtaining this salvation. "And he said unto them, Thus it is
          written, and thus it behooved Christ to suffer, and to rise from
          the dead the third day; that repentance and remission of sins
          should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at
          Jerusalem. And ye are witnesses of these things." Such is the
          record of Luke of the last commandment given by the Savior of
          mankind to his Apostles when they went forth to preach the
          Gospel, and communicate to the human family a knowledge of the
          way by which they could be saved. He commanded that repentance
          and remission of sins should be preached in his name, among all
          nations, beginning at Jerusalem. "And," said he, "ye are
          witnesses of these things." The witnesses were the Apostles sent
          forth to deliver the message entrusted to them, and to administer
          the ordinances by which salvation could be attained. "And he gave
          some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and
          some, pastors and teachers; for the perfecting of the saints, for
          the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ;
          till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge
          of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the
          stature of the fulness of Christ; that we henceforth be no more
          children tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of
          doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby
          they lie in wait to deceive."
          Now, when these Apostles--these witnesses--went forth, in
          obedience to the injunction of their Master, they preached
          repentance to the people; they called upon the human family to
          believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, bearing testimony, as they were
          witnesses, that it behooved Christ to suffer and rise again from
          the dead, that the way might be opened for the human family to
          obtain a remission of their sins. Let us inquire what they
          taught. The very first lesson, as we find it recorded by the same
          writer, Luke, after the Apostles had borne testimony of the
          coming of the Savior, of his death and resurrection, to the
          representatives of the various nations assembled at Jerusalem on
          the feast of Pentecost--a testimony which excited so much
          interest as to cause an outcry among them of, "Men and brethren,
          what shall we do?"--the very first lesson was, "Repent and be
          baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ, for the
          remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy
          Ghost." This, the first delivered message to the nations of the
          earth, after the ascension of the Savior, that we have any record
          of, was plain and simple--easily comprehended and easily obeyed.
          But in a few generations after, we find that those plain and
          simple doctrines--the doctrines of repentance and the remission
          of sins through the ordinance of baptism, and the doctrines which
          they continued to preach of the laying on of hands and the
          ministration and power of the Holy Ghost, which the Savior
          promised should be a comforter and should teach and instruct and
          lead those who received it into all truth--we find that those
          doctrines became unpopular. The Apostles foresaw this, in their
          warnings to the children of men, and cried out, "Beware lest any
          man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the
          tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after
          Christ." Look through the writings of these holy men, and you
          will find them replete with prophecies concerning the degeneracy
          of mankind in the last days. They declared that, "Men shall be
          lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud,
          blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy; without
          natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent,
          fierce, despisers of those that are good; traitors, heady,
          highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God, having a
          form of godliness, but denying the power thereof, from such turn
          away;" and furthermore, "The time will come, when they will not
          endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap
          to themselves teachers, having itching ears; and they shall turn
          away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables."
          This is prophecy--history reversed. In the writings of the
          Apostle Peter, we find these prophetic warnings repeated, and if
          we search what is called Church History, we find the result in
          exact conformity with the declarations made. In the year 1830,
          such was the condition of the world. Take a Bible in your pocket,
          at that time, and go into any of the large cities in
          Christendom--the city of London for instance--and inquire, as you
          enter a large edifice devoted to religious worship, what church
          is this? "This is St. Paul's;" and this? "This is St. Peter's;"
          and this? "St. Jude's;" and so on. Have you any apostles here? I
          find they were set in the Church, according to the Bible I have
          in my pocket. "Oh, no; they are all done away." Have you any
          prophets? "No; they are all done away." Have you any inspired men
          here? "No; they are all done away." Do you baptize in water here
          for the remission of sins? "Oh dear, no; we sprinkle babies when
          they are brought here; but baptism for the remission of sins is
          no longer needed."
          If you had searched through Christendom, you would have found
          this to be the condition of affairs, religiously, among
          professing Christians, when God in his abundant mercy sent forth
          from the heavens an angel "having the everlasting Gospel to
          preach to them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation,
          kindred, tongue, and people." When this angel delivered his
          message to Joseph Smith, to lay the foundation of the Church upon
          the original basis, it was as the prophet Isaiah describes it, in
          language which some would be inclined to say had been written
          quite recently, if they did not believe in prophecy. "Behold, the
          Lord maketh the earth empty, and maketh it waste, and turneth it
          upside down, and scattereth abroad the inhabitants thereof. And
          it shall be, as with the people, so with the priest; as with the
          servant, so with his master; as with the maid, so with her
          mistress; as with the buyer, so with the seller; as with the
          lender, so with the borrower; as with the taker of usury, so with
          the giver of usury to him. The land shall be utterly emptied, and
          utterly spoiled; for the Lord hath spoken this word. The earth
          mourneth and fadeth away, the world languisheth and fadeth away,
          the haughty people of the earth do languish. The earth, also, is
          defiled under the inhabitants thereof; because they have
          transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken the
          everlasting covenant; therefore hath the curse devoured the
          earth, and they that dwell therein are desolate; therefore, the
          inhabitants of the earth are burned, and few men left."
          Here is set forth, in the utmost plainness, why this great
          destruction, this utter cleaning out of wickedness, should be;
          because mankind had "transgressed the laws, changed the
          ordinance, broken the everlasting covenant; therefore hath the
          curse devoured the earth, and they that dwell therein are
          desolate; therefore, the inhabitants of the earth are burned and
          few men left." The storm of desolation and destruction has barely
          commenced; and all who would avoid it must come back to the
          original platform, beginning with faith, repentance, and baptism
          for the remission of sins, and lie according to the principles of
          that Gospel that was revealed from heaven, with apostles and
          prophets, with powers and blessings, accompanied by the gifts of
          wisdom, of knowledge and understanding, to bless, and save, and
          exalt mankind, and which will spread among the honest in heart of
          every nation, kindred, tongue, and people, until the kingdoms of
          this world become the kingdoms of our Lord and his Christ. May
          God bless us, and enable us to live worthy the high honor of
          being associated with such a work and participants in its
          blessings, in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / John
          Taylor, January 18, 1865
                            John Taylor, January 18, 1865
          Remarks by Elder John Taylor, made in the Tabernacle, Great Salt
                            Lake City, January 18, 1865.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          We have gathered out from the people of the world into these
          valleys to be distinct and separate from them as a Church and a
          people. If I can answer the desires of my mind, in relation to
          this matter, I should like to show you in what respect that
          separation consists; what relation we sustain to God, to his
          Church and kingdom, and to the world. It is a very broad and
          comprehensive subject, and one that requires our consideration. A
          good deal has been said lately about our associations with the
          world, and our being separate from the world, and about many of
          us being entangled with the world. It is well for us, as events
          transpire, to try if we can, to comprehend the position that we
          occupy in relation to these matters. We are really a peculiar
          people, that is, our views differ from those of the rest of the
          world generally, and that is not confined alone to our religion,
          but to our social system, to our politics, and to most of the
          affairs associated with human life. As a people, we present
          to-day a strange anomaly among the nations of the world. Unlike
          the rest of the nations, we have come out here to be separate
          from all other people, and we have notions and principles of a
          religious nature, differing very materially from all the rest of
          The continental nations of Europe are very differently
          constituted to what we are; they are generally a distinct people,
          but they have more or less become amalgamated years ago, and at
          present have assumed a degree of nationality, having their own
          peculiar theories, customs, and ideas of religion and politics,
          and their own notions and standards of a social system. Their
          systems have been codified to a certain extent,--have been taught
          in their schools, their lyceums, and their churches, and been
          discussed in their legislative assemblies, and form what is
          generally termed ideas nationale,--they have been written about,
          thought about, lectured about, and preached about. There are
          certain mediums through which the ideas of those nations flow
          generally, which differ according to the position they occupy
          politically and religiously, and the kind of government which
          they are under. These theories and systems are peculiarly
          influenced and modified by the peculiar languages through which
          their ideas are conveyed. Those nations are organized under
          strictly political principles or systems--their organizations are
          almost exclusively of a political nature, although they have
          arrangements pertaining to church government which regulate and
          control in many instances the consciences of their subjects. They
          have a certain kind of religion in which they generally are, no
          doubt, conscientious, and which is sustained by law.
          The United States differ from them; for, although organized on
          political principles, yet, they have no religion which they
          acknowledge as such, nationally, leaving the people free to
          worship as they please.
          We differ from all the rest. We have come together simply upon
          religious principles; we believe that God has spoken, that the
          heavens have been opened, that a connection has been formed
          between the heavens and the earth in our day. We believe that God
          has commenced to establish his kingdom upon the earth, and to
          teach mankind those principles that are calculated to bless and
          exalt them in time and in eternity. For this reason we have
          assembled together, and for this reason we build temples and
          administer ordinances in those temples which have been revealed
          unto us from the Most High. Now, as there are no other people
          anywhere under the heavens that have these ideas but ourselves,
          we may, indeed, be called a peculiar people--a people separate
          and distinct from all others. We are not composed of one
          particular family of the human race; we cannot be called Germans,
          we cannot be called English, we cannot be called Americans, or
          French, or Italians, Swiss, Portuguese, or Scandinavians. You
          cannot call us by any nationality, in particular, for we are
          composed of the whole. The nationality we are now in possession
          of is brought about simply, in the first place, as I have already
          stated, upon religious grounds.
          The Elders of this Church have gone forth to those different
          nations and have preached the words of life, and have made known
          unto the people of those nations the things which the Lord hath
          communicated unto them, and the people in those nations who have
          received the principles of truth preached to them, all who could
          have gathered themselves together as we find ourselves to-day in
          this Territory, a distinct, religious brotherhood--if you please,
          a distinct nationality, differing from all others. True, we are
          associated with what is called the United States of America, in a
          territorial capacity, and acknowledge that authority and submit
          to its rule; we are really under the constitution of the United
          States. We have among us Federal officers who represent the
          United States government, and in this respect, so far as
          submission to law is concerned, and so far as the constitution of
          the United States is concerned, we are really associated with
          them, and form part and parcel of that government, and, at the
          same time, are just as loyal, and just as patriotic as any other
          portion of the United States; and we are bound always to admit
          another great fact, which is, that we are under the constitution
          of the law of Heaven.
          There is a theory which has prevailed to a great extent in the
          United States lately, among what is called the dominant party of
          the present day, which is denominated the "higher law." Whether
          they understand anything about that higher law or not I am not
          prepared to say; but there is a law that we are placed under that
          is really and emphatically a higher law. The higher law, of which
          those parties speak, refers particularly to the liberation of the
          negro, wherein they conceive that that is paramount to everything
          else, and that to it all barriers and obstacles, whether of
          constitution or law, shall give way; but that is a question which
          I shall not discuss here this afternoon, but leave it to other
          The position that we are placed in is very different; we are
          gathered together here, as I have stated before, on religious
          principles, which was the first inducement to our gathering
          ourselves together. We furthermore believe, that being gathered
          together, it is our right to worship God according to the
          dictates of our consciences; we believe other things, also, that
          have been communicated unto us, that have been spoken and written
          about very plainly and extensively, viz., that God will establish
          his kingdom upon the earth, irrespective of what my opinion may
          be, or yours, or what the opinions of the government of France,
          of the United States, or any nation of the earth may be; we
          believe this is a deed that will actually be accomplished, and
          that God will introduce a rule and government of his own upon
          this earth, and that all nations, all rule, all power, all
          government, all authority, will have to submit to that rule, that
          government, and that authority; that is, this government will
          spread and extend until "all nations (to use a very familiar
          expression among all parties) shall bow to the sceptre of King
          Emmanuel." That expression is very commonly used, and very little
          understood; still, at the same time, it is in common use
          throughout the religious world generally. We believe it; we
          believe, too, that it will be literally fulfilled; that all
          nations will be overthrown; that these kingdoms, and governments,
          and powers, and authorities that exist on the earth, will be
          broken and destroyed, and that God will introduce a government
          and rule and dominion of his own.
          These are some of our views. There are many people that have
          believed in these things, many religious parties have written
          about them; they have expected them, and believed in them; they
          have been part and parcel of their faith: there is nothing,
          remarkable, therefore, about this. But when we go a little
          further and say, we believe that we are the people, then it
          places things in another position.
          Theory is one thing in relation to these matters, and the
          practical part is another thing. We do believe it, and we
          honestly acknowledge that this is that kingdom which the Lord has
          commenced to establish upon the earth, and that it will not only
          govern all people in a religious capacity, but also in a
          political capacity. "Well," say some, "is not that treason?" I do
          not know that it is; it is not treason against the Lord, and I do
          not know that it is treason against the government of the United
          States, or any other government. I have yet to learn that I, or
          any other person, or nation have power or authority to control
          the Almighty in his acts. I think that when he has a mind to, he
          will turn and overturn, and revolutionize, and bring to pass his
          purposes without asking me or any other person or power on the
          earth any odds, and we cannot help ourselves. It is merely a
          matter of faith with me and others, and it may be of knowledge
          also in regard to the designs and purposes of God in relation to
          this earth, and in relation to this people associated with him;
          but who do we interfere with politically, whose rights are
          proscribed by us, or what law is broken? None. We respect, honor,
          and obey the Constitution and laws of the nation with which we
          are associated. This is simply our faith or knowledge, as the
          case may be; it is the faith of this community that this is that
          kingdom that the Lord has commenced to establish upon the earth.
          The way that he has brought us together is, as stated before, by
          preaching the Gospel unto us through his servants, repentance and
          the remission of sins through baptism in water in the name of the
          Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, and the laying on of
          hands for the impartation of the Holy Ghost.
          I remember some years ago being in the city of Paris, in France;
          there were a great many reformers there, as well as refugees from
          different parts of Europe. I had a long conversation with a Mr.
          Krolikeski, a gentleman from Poland, about the Gospel. He then
          was associated with a certain portion of the red republican party
          in France, with that particular branch of them that embraced the
          doctrines that those people professed that came to Nauvoo when we
          left--the followers of Mr. Cabot. After talking with him for some
          time on the principles of the Gospel, and what was calculated to
          be brought about in the earth, he turned to me and said, "Mr.
          Taylor, do you propose to bring about a revolution in the earth,
          and to introduce another state of things through the principle of
          repentance, of faith, and baptism, etc.?" "Yes, sir, that is the
          way we understand it." "Well, I wish you every success, but I am
          afraid you will not be able to accomplish anything."
          I suppose he thought that the gate was very straight, and the
          road there too narrow to accomplish any national purposes, and,
          as Jesus said, "that few there were that found it."
          Said I to him, you are trying to bring in a great reformation and
          you think you are going to accomplish something; we will compare
          notes. It is a number of years now since we left the city of
          Nauvoo; it was a large city then, and surrounded by a rich
          country, that we cultivated. In consequence of our religious
          views we could not stay there; we were persecuted and driven, and
          had to go into the wilderness, had to carry with us our husbandry
          utensils, seed, grain, tools of every kind, and provisions, a
          distance of over thirteen hundred miles by land, with ox-teams,
          into an unknown and unexplored country among the savages of the
          desert. You and your people came to our vacated city, lived in
          our houses already built for you; you came to gardens and fields,
          already in a state of cultivation; you had every facility for
          improvement and progression. Now, sir, what is the difference
          between the two people? In reading your communications from
          Nauvoo, which I frequently read, every time you issue your paper
          you call for more money and means to help them to carry out their
          plans, and to progress in building up their city. On the other
          hand, our people, situated far away among the red skins of the
          forest, are sending out hundreds and thousands of dollars to help
          to gather the poor there. Now, which is progressing the most, you
          or they? "Well," says he, "I have nothing to say." I think he
          will have still less to say to-day than then.
          We expect still to continue to progress and to advance in
          religious intelligence, in political intelligence; in religious
          power, and in political power; we are still expecting to carry
          out our social principles, which differ very materially from
          others. Our marriage system is different from that of others--of
          that which is called the religious world at the present time--the
          Christian world, if you please; and this marriage system of ours,
          at the first sight, appears to them as it did to us at first
          sight, the most revolting, perhaps, of anything that could be
          conceived of. Whatever others may have thought about it, I know
          what was thought about it by those who first embarked in it. If
          they could have plowed around the log, according to a facetious
          remark of President Lincoln, or burned it, or done anything else,
          they would have done it, rather than have entered into it; but
          they could not, and they had to take it up as the word of the
          Lord. It was not a matter of their own choice; it was the will
          and the commandment of the Almighty, for the guidance of his
          people. In this we differ materially from others; they think that
          they are right in their views, we know that we are right in ours,
          and therefore we are satisfied. We expect, then, that these
          principles that we have received, and principles that will
          continue to be imparted unto us by our Heavenly Father, will
          spread, and increase, and go forth, and obtain the pre-eminence
          and a position among the nations of the earth. We do not expect
          that we shall ever be converted to any of their religious
          systems, or to any of their social systems. We know what we have
          received emanates from God; and knowing that, we stand upon it,
          and cleave to it as the rock of ages, knowing that no power under
          the heavens is able to overturn it, therefore we stand secure.
          The Lord has a design to speak, to instruct, to guide, to direct
          us in all our affairs, whether it relates to this world or to the
          world that is to come, and we are desirous to be taught of Him,
          and being taught of Him, we are then desirous to communicate the
          intelligence we receive unto others.
          Some people will say, "You are harsh, you are exclusive, you do
          not wish to associate and to mix with others." To a certain
          extent we do, and to a certain extent we do not. To a very great
          extent we feel very much interested in the welfare and happiness
          of the human family. I very much question whether greater
          philanthropy has been developed among any other people under the
          face of the heavens than among this people. I am at the defiance
          of any body, or class of men, or nation, to show that greater
          sacrifices, so to speak, have been made anywhere than have been
          made among the Elders of this Church to promulge among the people
          that dwell upon all the earth the things that God has revealed
          unto them. Can you point out another people who have exhibited
          the same degree of intelligence, earnestness, and zeal in
          travelling from nation to nation, from city to city, by land and
          sea, over mighty oceans and desert wastes, even to the ends of
          the earth in order to promote the happiness and well being of
          their fellow men? There are no philanthropical societies existing
          in the world, that have done what the Elders of this Church have
          done, they cannot be produced. Are we misanthropists? No. We are
          cosmopolitans, citizens of the world, and have implanted in our
          bosoms the spirit of the living God, which prompts us to seek for
          the welfare and happiness of all the human family. All this, and
          more, we have done, and I very much question whether you can find
          anybody that would dispute it. They would say we are in error:
          that they have a right to say, and to think, if they please; but
          there is not one who can say in truth that we have not done all
          we claim to have done. We believe that god has spoken, and that
          he has organized his church and kingdom upon the earth; that he
          has and does communicate his will to his church; and believing
          that, we went forth as heralds of life and salvation to proclaim
          to the nations of the earth the things God has communicated unto
          us. Did we go to preach to the people for their gold, for their
          silver, and for their precious things; for their clothing, or for
          anything they possess; for honor or for fame? No; but we were
          pointed at as speckled birds, we were opposed and persecuted in
          every town where we set our feet, and nothing but the power of
          God and the power of truth could have sustained the Elders in
          promulging those principles God gave them to communicate to the
          world. They had with them the power of God and the power of
          truth, which prevailed, so far as we see it this day--so far as
          it has had its influence, and so far as it has operated upon the
          human mind--so far as it has gathered the Saints of God, and so
          far as it has preserved them in the position they now occupy.
          This being the case, then, we cannot be charged with being narrow
          and contracted in our views--we cannot be charged with seeking to
          injure any class of men, for we have sought to benefit everybody
          that would be benefited by us, we have sought to benefit them
          every way in regard to their circumstances--in regard to their
          faith--in regard to their politics, and in regard to their
          bodies, to their souls, in regard to time and to eternity. There
          are thousands in this Territory to-day that are now well off that
          never would have owned one foot of land in the world anywhere
          else. What have we done besides? We have helped one another, sent
          out our teams by the hundreds and by the thousands, and our
          means, to assist those who could not assist themselves. Why?
          Because they were desirous to come, and we were willing to help
          them to come. Millions of dollars have been expended in this
          thing alone among the people. Can we in justice be called
          niggardly and contracted in our feelings? Can it be said that we
          have not shown liberality? It would be folly and madness to talk
          so; and, to say the least of it, it would show a lack of
          knowledge of the history of this church and people, and the
          position they occupy. I say, further, that if this nation had
          listened to the voice of Joseph Smith in a political capacity,
          they would have been saved this war that has now overtaken them:
          but they would not be saved; and I have sometimes been reminded
          of the position that Jerusalem occupied on a certain occasion
          when Jesus Christ spake by the spirit of revelation prophecying
          the events about to take place, he said, "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem,
          thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent
          unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together,
          even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye
          would not! Behold your house is left unto you desolate," etc. He
          then went on to tell them that Jerusalem should be overthrown and
          not one stone should be left standing upon another, that it
          should be trodden down of the Gentiles, etc. Could Joseph Smith
          or Jesus Christ help being the communicators of such tidings?
          They could not. Could Jesus Christ prevent the wrath of God
          overtaking the Jews and plunging them into irrevocable ruin? No.
          Could Joseph Smith, or this people, have hindered anything that
          has overtaken the nation of the United States? They could not.
          They have had warning of the approaching evil for the last thirty
          years, and they had the opportunity of knowing what would have
          saved them, but they would not be saved. Is it wrong, cruel, and
          oppressive to try and save a people when you see that people or
          nation rushing headlong to the brink of a precipice? Is it wrong
          to tell them to hold on or they will be destroyed? You would
          rather call it the voice of a friend; all good men would, and, as
          far as bad men are concerned, we care little about them.
          Now, we are here, and those events spoken of are transpiring and
          will transpire, and we cannot help it, and President Brigham
          Young cannot help it; these judgments are the decrees of fate,
          they will roll on--they have got to come and we cannot hinder
          them. What are we aiming at now? We want to save ourselves if we
          can, we want to know how to save ourselves as rational
          independent beings that have got souls to save--beings that are
          eternal. We want to know how to save ourselves and how to save
          progenitors, and lay a foundation to save our posterity after us,
          and also to save all that can be saved of the world--all that are
          in the reach of salvation, and, if possible, root out the chaos
          and confusion that every where exist in the political world; form
          and stablish correct principles that shall emanate from the great
          Eloheim, and that shall elevate the nations of the earth from the
          degradation in which they are wallowing to-day, and exalt them on
          high, that they may be prepared to receive teachings and
          instructions from God, and, if possible, be saved in his kingdom.
          These are things that we are trying to accomplish; our hearts are
          full of blessings, full of kindness, full of consideration, full
          of long suffering, full of a desire to save, bless, and exalt all
          that are within the reach of salvation. That is the worst injury
          that we ever did to any of the human family, and these are the
          worst desires that we ever had towards any of them. What do we
          wish to do for ourselves? We wish to purify ourselves from every
          kind of corruption--from all the leaven of gentilism, so to speak
          (I make use of that term, because it is generally comprehended
          among us to mean the leaven of the world of corruption and of
          evil of every kind), and to try to save ourselves and purify
          ourselves in our spirits, in our bodies, in our feelings, and to
          seek for intelligence from God, and from all correct sources,
          that we may be of a truth representatives of God upon the earth.
          This is what we are aiming at, and we wish, if we can, so to
          conduct ourselves that God will not be ashamed of us, that holy
          angels will not be ashamed to associate with us, and that all our
          communications, doings, and associations may be of that nature
          that will at all times secure the smile and the approbation of
          our Heavenly Father, that when we get done with this work, and
          the world and the affairs of the world, so far as this present
          existence is concerned, we can say as Paul said, "I have fought
          the good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the
          faith;" I have done my duty, honored my calling, and now there is
          a crown laid up for me, and for all who love the appearing of our
          Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. 
          These are some of the feelings that throb in our bosoms, and
          these are the things we wish to accomplish for ourselves and for
          others. Is there any lack of philanthropy in this, any lack of
          good feelings towards any of the human family? No. "Then why do
          you not associate with everybody? Why do you not receive
          everybody into your houses? Why do you not let everybody do as
          they please, etc. Why do you not allow everybody to corrupt
          themselves if they wish to, and corrupt you if they please, and
          introduce their corruptions among your people?" The reason why we
          do not do these things is, because we have not a mind to. We
          think there is a very great distinction between the one and the
          other--we think there is a great difference between building up
          the kingdom of God and submitting to the power of the devil; we
          think there is a very material difference between associating
          with the Saints of God, or honorable men of the earth, than with
          the opposite class of persons. We think we have a perfect right
          always to choose what kind of company we keep and who we
          associate with. "But Bishop Wooley denounces the gentiles
          sometimes;" perhaps he has good reason to. I do not know whether
          ever he denounces any of the folks called Mormons or not; but I
          know one thing, if he did his duty he would denounce them. I know
          that there are a great many, both among those that are called
          gentiles and those that are called Mormons, that do not act as
          gentlemen ought to act, much less as Saints of the Most High.
          I wish this people to understand one thing, that there is a very
          material difference between treating men with courtesy and
          kindness, acting in a spirit of civilization, and trying to
          introduce correct principles among them, and permitting them to
          introduce their devilism among us; there are rules of etiquette
          among other nations and peoples, just as much as there are here.
          I have seen things practised here by men, both by saints and
          sinners, that would not be tolerated in any other nation more
          than they would be here. I have seen acts in public, and I was
          going to say in private--although I do not enter much into the
          private acts of men, and do not wish to--but I have seen acts in
          public that would not be tolerated upon any consideration in any
          decent society; but persons committing such acts would be
          promptly turned out of that society. It is not because a man has
          a few dollars in his pocket, anywhere that I have been, that he
          is allowed to push himself and crowd himself into anybody's
          family he thinks proper, and seek to corrupt that family; no such
          things are tolerated anywhere among people who profess to be
          guided by correct principles, and shall we tolerate them here?
          No. It is usual in other countries, before a man can be received
          into society, that he must bring with him a reputation from
          reputable men; he is expected to have introductory letters before
          he can be introduced to them and associate with them, and not
          because he is in the shape of a man and walks on two legs. Why,
          baboons do that. Before I should allow strangers to come into my
          family and mix with my wives and daughters, I should want to know
          who they were, where they came from, what their instincts were,
          and what was their moral and religious character. As a head of a
          family, I have a right to know these things; I have a right to
          know what influences are brought in and around my house, what
          spirits predominate there, and I have a right to know what a
          man's religion is.
          "But do you not allow liberty of conscience?" Yes. You can
          worship what you please--a donkey or a red dog--but you must not
          bring that worship into my house; I do not believe in your gods,
          I believe in the God of Israel, in the Holy Ghost, in the spirit
          of truth and intelligence, and all good principles; and if you
          want to worship your gods, worship them somewhere else, and if
          anybody else wants to worship them, they can do so: you can go on
          to one of those mountains and worship your gods, or if you are
          living in a house here, you can be a worshipper of Buddha if you
          please; but I do not want it in my house, and I do not want the
          spirit that you have--the spirit of those gods, visible or
          invisible; I do not want their teachings, spirit, nor influences.
          Who does not know that the world is corrupted? Who does not know
          that it has been recommended by the authorities in the city of
          Washington, and unblushingly published in the public prints, to
          send to Utah a lot of nice young men to prostitute our young
          women? Shame on such a nation, yet such things have been
          published and proclaimed here. You may see people come here
          smiling and bowing, and very polite, and "wont you let me take
          your daughter to a party?" No, nor yourself either, not unless I
          have a mind to; I will have a say in that, for I want to know who
          dances with my wives and daughters, and whether they have a
          reputation or not, and if they have a reputation, what kind of
          people they are. This I have a right to do in a social capacity,
          independent of all religion, and I mean to do it. I will now turn
          the tables another way round. Did you ever see any of the Elders
          of this Church out abroad among the nations try to crowd
          themselves upon any people, and seek to go into their balls and
          assemblies, or families, contrary to rule and to the principles
          laid down? No, never. Did you ever hear of them wanting to take
          their daughters to balls and parties, etc? No, never. We claim
          the same kind of treatment from you; if we want your company we
          will ask it; if we do not ask it, you may consider that you are
          not wanted. We know and understand the spirit of the times to a
          certain extent.
          "Do you mean to say that all the gentiles are bad men?" Not by
          any means; there are a great many good, honorable, high-minded
          men; we have met with many such abroad; we have met with
          gentlemanly, courteous treatment from strangers--I have, and so
          have others--and we have met with such here. We would not be
          behind any gentleman in reciprocating gentlemanly and courteous
          behavior; we wish to treat all good men as brothers, and no
          gentleman will object to what I now say. But I am sorry to say,
          that a great many are not of this class. Let us look at our
          position for a little while if you please. We are here in the
          midst of the mountains; there is a dreadful war raging in the
          east, and all kinds of characters are flocking here from that
          war, good and bad, and who knows who they are? We know one thing;
          vigilant committees in neighboring mining settlements are cutting
          the throats of some and hanging others. How do we know who we
          have here? Very likely cut-throats, blacklegs, gamblers,
          guerrillas, and murderers, all gathered here together; and here
          is an honest, industrious people, and we do not choose to
          associate with strangers until we know who they are, and we think
          we are perfectly right in so doing.
          Our object is to serve God and keep his commandments, and let the
          right, and the might, and the truth bear rule, and that right, by
          the help of God, we will maintain. We do not choose such
          associates, we want to know who it is we are talking to. I would
          dislike very much to have a murderer to sit down at my table and
          be placed under the disagreeable necessity of dragging him out by
          the neck. We have a right to know these things, and we mean to
          know them. We mean to take care of ourselves and pursue a course
          that is right in the sight of God. We mean to purify ourselves as
          far as we have power, and by the help of God, and cleave to the
          right and maintain it. May God help us to do it, in the name of
          Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 /
          Wilford Woodruff, January 22, 1865
                         Wilford Woodruff, January 22, 1865
             Remarks by Elder Wilford Woodruff, made in the Tabernacle, 
                   Great Salt Lake City, Sunday, January 22, 1865.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          I am called upon to occupy a little time this afternoon. I will
          found my remarks upon the following words, viz.:--He that walketh
          in the paths of godliness, righteousness, and truth hath not
          fellowship with the blasphemer and the ungodly. I am satisfied
          that in whatever path the children of men walk, whether that path
          be good or evil, the longer they follow it the more desire they
          will have to remain therein; and I am perfectly satisfied, also,
          that any servant of God who faithfully keeps his commandments and
          enjoys the spirit of the Lord, and walks in the light thereof
          continually, feels that anything which is contrary to this is
          unpleasant and disagreeable to him. No man who thus walks can be
          pleased and edified in hearing the name of God blasphemed, or in
          associating with the ungodly and with those who honor not the
          name of the Lord. Every person has more or less influence in the
          society where he moves, and becomes responsible not only for his
          acts, but for the influence he exercises over others. Those
          persons who will not receive the Gospel of Christ, and do not
          keep the commandments of God, and will not lay these things to
          heart, are entirely ignorant of the joy, the consolation, the
          gratification, and the blessings which are received and enjoyed
          by walking in the paths of the righteous and the godly.
          The good and the evil is presented to all, and the light of
          Christ enlighteneth all that cometh into the world, according to
          their capacity and the position they occupy upon the face of the
          earth; the spirit of the Lord operates upon all persons, more or
          less, throughout the course of their days, whether they live
          under a gospel dispensation or not. Those who live under what is
          called civilized rule are taught the moral law--the ten
          commandments--they are taught not to lie, not to swear, not to
          steal, in short, not to do those things that are counted ungodly,
          unholy, and unrighteous in the midst of society. When parents
          teach their children these principles in early youth, they make
          an impression upon their minds, and as quick as children arrive
          at years of accountability, early impressions will have an
          influence upon their actions and throughout the rest of their
          lives. Children so impressed and so trained are ever after
          shocked when they hear their associates swear and take the name
          of God in vain; and if ever they learn to swear, it first
          requires a great effort to overcome their early impressions.
          Persons who are addicted to stealing, if they have not been
          actually taught to steal in their youth, their minds have not
          been sufficiently imbued with the principles of honesty by their
          parents and guardians.
          There is a great responsibility resting upon parents in all
          communities and societies, and especially with the Latter-day
          Saints. I was brought up under the Blue Laws of Connecticut, when
          Presbyterianism ruled throughout the State as the religion of
          that State; and I dared no more go out to play on a Sunday than I
          dared put my hand in the fire--it would have been considered an
          unpardonable sin. We should not attend a ball and dance; we durst
          not attend a theatre, and from Saturday night, at sundown, to
          Monday morning, we must not laugh or smile, but we must study our
          catechism; this we had to do whether we were members of the
          church or not. My father was not a member of any church. This
          early teaching had its effect upon me. Where Presbyterians,
          Baptists, and other sects have taught the youth and mankind in
          general good wholesome principles of morality, so far it has had
          a good effect upon the generation around them. It is true they
          had not the gospel, apostles, pastors, teachers, and
          presidents,--inspired men to teach them how to be saved. Their
          religion was according to the tradition of their fathers; the
          true Gospel was not manifested in their time, yet they had a
          great many good moral principles which had a good effect and a
          salutary influence upon all those who were affected and
          influenced by them. Wherever there is an influence that leads
          anybody to good, or to do good, so far I feel to acknowledge the
          hand of God in it; for I believe that every thing that leads to
          good and to do good is of the Lord, and everything that leads to
          evil and to do evil is of the wicked one.
          I feel to thank the Lord for any good moral principles which have
          been taught me in my childhood. I am satisfied there have been
          tens of thousands of the human family since Jesus Christ and the
          ancient apostles were slain and the church went into the
          wilderness, who have acted up to the best light they had; for
          they have had moral principles among them, and they have lived up
          to their religion, millions of them, according to the best light
          they had, and they will have their reward for so doing. In the
          early days of my life, if a man cursed or swore, lied or stole,
          or broke any of the moral commandments of the Lord, it was looked
          upon as a disgrace, as not being comely and good, or right, in
          the sight or moral people in that day. Whenever a man did do
          wrong, so far he had an influence more or less, and those that
          were good would not hold fellowship with him.
          We now live in another age and dispensation, and most of us who
          live in the valleys of the mountains have received the Gospel of
          Christ, which has been revealed unto us in our day and
          generation, and we have great respect unto the name of the Lord
          according to the light and knowledge which we have; we have
          respect unto the ordinances of the house of God, and that respect
          is increased with us according to the increased light and
          knowledge which we have. We wish to carry out the commandments of
          the Lord as far as we have knowledge in the things of the kingdom
          of God, and feel disposed always to do that which is right. It
          grates upon the ears of the faithful Latter-day Saint when he
          hears the name of the Lord blasphemed; he cannot fellowship the
          person who does it, and you do not find him in that kind of
          company, no matter whether the blasphemer is a professed Mormon
          or of the wicked world. No matter what their profession, if men
          live their religion and honor God, they will not fellowship the
          ungodly. There is no man that lives his religion in this church
          and kingdom that can associate with any person who blasphemes the
          name of God; he will not stay in any such society, but feels
          himself disgraced if he were to countenance by his presence such
          blasphemy, and this is so with all men who love the Lord and
          desire to honor his name, no matter where they may be, or what
          their position on the earth.
          We live in a wicked generation. There is a change in the world
          now from what it was fifty years ago. There is a great change in
          comparison to the days of my youth. There is more sin committed
          now in one gentile city in twenty-four hours than used to be
          committed in a hundred years. From the time I can remember until
          I was twenty years of age, there was but one murder committed in
          the New England States. When it was generally known that a man
          had murdered his wife and had to be hung up between the heavens
          and the earth, it caused a great sensation throughout that
          country. The murders committed to-day have become so numerous
          that they do not think it worth while to publish them; newspaper
          editors would rather give the space in their papers to
          advertisements, they pay better. Wickedness of every kind has
          increased upon the face of the earth; darkness covers the earth,
          and gross darkness the minds of the people. The whole earth seems
          to be deluged with profanity and abominations of almost every
          kind. This is as true as it is lamentable to think about. The
          Lord has sent his Gospel in its fulness; we have preached it to
          the nations, and sin and iniquity have increased a thousand fold
          since the Gospel has been offered to them and they have rejected
          it. The light which they formerly had is withdrawn from them, and
          the powers of evil have taken possession of them, and reign
          universally over the nations; yet, notwithstanding this it is no
          reason why we should follow in the same path. It is for us to
          walk in the path of virtue, righteousness, truth and godliness,
          honoring God and those things that will exalt men to His favor.
          This way is open before us--it is open to all men. The Gospel of
          Jesus Christ has been revealed in its fulness, glory, and beauty,
          and offered to this generation; and every man and woman who has
          been willing to accept the Gospel can see and understand the
          blessings there are to be enjoyed in embracing it. There are
          blessings offered to this generation in the Gospel which they
          have had no knowledge of before. There are blessings pertaining
          to the Gospel in every age that the world were ignorant of until
          the Gospel was first presented to them.
          The Lord gave the holy Priesthood to Adam and to his sons; he
          gave to him the keys of the kingdom, and all things pertaining to
          salvation and eternal life. Adam and all his posterity for some
          centuries possessed and held the priesthood, even down to the
          days of Enoch and Noah, and the Lord saved the world as far as he
          could by those principles; but the hearts of men desired to do
          evil, and evil increased in the world until men became subject to
          vanity to sin, and to the temptations of the devil; they yielded
          to his influence, and the consequence was, after a few
          generations, and during the days of Noah, they hardly could find
          a righteous man--a man who was willing to walk in the path of
          righteousness and truth, and so the Lord brought a judgment upon
          the world.
          The Lord has introduced the Gospel in a number of dispensations,
          and few have embraced it. It is so in this age of the world. The
          Lord has commenced to warn the world in our day, and has
          commenced to save all who will obey his word, that they may
          receive an exaltation and glory in his presence. He has revealed
          his Gospel and established his kingdom to save the nations, as
          far as they will be saved; and we have the same Gospel and
          Priesthood that Adam had, and the same apostleship that has ever
          been revealed to any generation of men. This we present to the
          world--it is in our midst; and the Lord has sent forth his
          proclamation to save this generation, which is submerged in
          wickedness, and corruption and abominations of every description.
          Many of us have embraced this Gospel, and I will say again, if we
          live our religion we will have no disposition to walk in the
          paths of sinners, to blaspheme the name of God, nor will we have
          fellowship for persons who do it. Dollars and cents will not buy
          or lead those astray who have embraced the Gospel and live their
          religion. I know that a man who has been faithful in his prayers,
          and has become acquainted with the operations of the Holy Spirit
          and the blessings of it, has no desire to turn from the paths of
          truth to walk in the ways of the ungodly, for the path of truth
          and righteousness is the only path of safety.
          We are sent into this world to accomplish a great purpose, and to
          fulfil the object of our creation we must observe the
          commandments of God, and obey the ordinances of his house, and
          walk in them while we live in the flesh, that when we have done
          with this body we can go back into the presence of our Father and
          our God and receive in fulness the blessings and promises made to
          his children. Any man or woman that falls short of this, falls
          short of fulfilling the object of their creation. We have
          everything to encourage us to do right and to keep the
          commandments of God, and to be faithful unto death, that we may
          have a crown of life. We have but little time to live here--the
          labor of this probation is very short; and when we can really
          understand that our future destiny--future happiness, exaltation,
          and glory, or our future misery debasement, and sorrow all depend
          upon the little time we spend in this world, I can say that it is
          not to the advantage of any man under the heavens to spend his
          time in doing wrong--it is no advantage to any man to blaspheme
          the name of God, he makes no money by it, it brings him no joy,
          happiness, or honor. And again, if a man ever obtains any
          blessings from any quarter, he has got to obtain them from the
          Lord, for the devil has no disposition to bless, and will not
          bless the children of men; but he labors to lead them astray from
          the paths of righteousness and truth.
          Those persons who will not walk according to the light they have,
          must sooner or later inherit sore afflictions to themselves; they
          do not have joy, and happiness, and salvation like that person
          who obeys the commandments of God and constantly does that which
          is right. The wicked are always in fear. There is no inducement
          for a man or a woman to commit sin--it is not a paying business.
          It is better for us to serve the Lord; for those who serve the
          Lord morning, noon, and night are happy, whether they be rich or
          poor. I have often thought that I never saw this people more
          happy than in their seasons of greatest poverty, drivings, and
          afflictions for the word of God and the testimony of Jesus. The
          Spirit of God has been with them, and in their humility and
          sufferings the Holy Ghost, the Comforter, has been their constant
          companion, and they have been filled with joy and consolation,
          and have rejoiced before the Lord for all these things. They
          would not have felt so if they had not been trying to keep the
          commandments of the Lord.
          As a people, we never were as greatly blessed in this world's
          goods as at the present time. The Lord has planted our feet in
          the valleys of these mountains where we can worship our God in
          safety and peace, where we can kneel down in our family circles
          in the morning and at evening, and offer up our prayers and
          thanksgivings before the Lord, and we can teach these principles
          to our children, and attend our meetings to listen to the
          servants of the Lord teaching the principles of eternal life. I
          trust that the Latter-day Saints will not suffer a desire for the
          wealth of this world to turn their footsteps aside from the paths
          of their duty towards God and one another--from rectitude,
          righteousness, holiness, and godliness before the Lord. If we
          should see a man that holds the Priesthood mingling with the
          profane who blaspheme the name of God, and seems to fellowship
          that kind of society, you may mark that man; he enjoys not the
          spirit of his religion, the Holy Ghost dwells not with him, or,
          if he enjoys it at all, it is but in a small degree, and when he
          enters into that kind of society it will leave him.
          It does not pay any person to do wrong, and the present
          generation will suffer the chastening hand of God, and that
          severely, because that wickedness predominates throughout the
          whole world, and the name of the God of Israel is not honored,
          but is almost forgotten by the children of men, only when they
          remember him to blaspheme his holy name. As wickedness increases
          in the world, we should increase in righteousness, in faith, and
          in knowledge, that we may have an increased degree of the spirit
          of God dwelling with us, and it will take of the things of the
          Father and show them unto us, that we may be strengthened to
          magnify our calling as Saints of the Most High, doing the will of
          God and building up his kingdom. We should in our lives show that
          we are the friends of God and each other's friends, and in doing
          this we shall be happy; and whether Jacob is great or small, in
          righteousness the kingdom of God will gain strength, for the
          heavens are full of knowledge, to be revealed for the use of the
          children of God as fast as they are prepared to receive it. We
          shall never see the time when we shall cease to progress and
          increase in knowledge, for we are the children of God, and if we
          are faithful in fulfilling the object of our creation, keeping
          the commandments of God as we are guided and directed to do, the
          knowledge is boundless that this people have yet to receive. We
          are in the school, and in a great measure we are still little
          children in the knowledge of the things of the kingdom of God;
          yet, how great and glorious are those principles that we are in
          possession of to-day when we compare them with our position and
          advancement ten years ago, or before we heard the Gospel of Jesus
          Christ. We were then under the traditions of our fathers--many of
          them good, though some of them were false and of no profit. With
          all the teachings we had and the Bible before us, we did not know
          the first step to take to secure to ourselves eternal life, for
          there was no man to teach us. Since that day we have heard the
          voice of apostles and prophets, some on this side and some on the
          other side of the vail, and they are all engaged in building up
          the kingdom of God in this the dispensation of the fulness of
          These principles are worth more than gold and silver to us, and
          are sweeter than honey or the honey comb to the faithful, for in
          them we receive exaltation and salvation both for the living and
          the dead. They are the same principles that saved our fathers,
          the prophets and saints of old, and they without us, cannot be
          made perfect, nor we without them. I rejoice in the Gospel, for
          it is the power of God unto salvation to all those that believe,
          both Jew and Greek. When men reject the Gospel they injure
          themselves, not God or his Saints; they turn the key against
          themselves that opens the door of salvation to all believers.
          Anciently, the world was at war with the Savior, and there has
          always been a great opposition to the introduction of the Gospel
          of Jesus Christ from the beginning of time to this day. There has
          always been in the unregenerated world a spirit of warfare
          against the kingdom of God. Joseph Smith was an obscure
          individual when Moroni, the Angel of God, revealed unto him the
          Gospel of Jesus Christ, and gave into his hands the records of
          the Nephites. The hearts of men were stirred up against him, and
          the devil is a personage that has knowledge and great power, and
          he possesses that power, and has ever since he has been upon the
          earth. He has so much power that he leads at his will almost the
          whole of the generations of the earth. By his power the hearts of
          men were stirred up against Joseph Smith when he received the
          administration of an angel, because it was the germ of the
          establishment of the kingdom of God. The devil knew when the
          angel delivered that record to Joseph Smith that it was the
          foundation of a system that would overthrow his kingdom. The
          drivings, etc., that this people have passed through has not been
          because they have been breakers of the law, nor because they have
          been more wicked than others, but because they were laying the
          foundation of the kingdom of God that would grow, and increase,
          and rule, and reign until it fills the whole earth and brings the
          world into subjection to its authority and sway, and prepare the
          way for the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ, who is king of kings
          and Lord of Lords, who will come and reign over the whole earth;
          and all other kingdoms, and presidents and governors, and their
          subjects will be obliged to acknowledge that Jesus is the Christ.
          The Latter-day Work which we represent will bind the power of the
          devil which has held sway among the children of men for 180
          generations. Then it is not strange that the devil should become
          mad and stir up the wicked to make war against it. The Lord will
          inspire his servants and give them ability to maintain this
          kingdom upon the earth. He is at the helm. I would not give much
          for it if He was not the author of it; it could not stand without
          Him against the great power that is waged against it.
          Why is this warfare? It is not because it is Satan's kingdom or
          any part of it; if so, his kingdom would be divided against
          itself; but it is because it is the kingdom of God, and it has
          got to be planted in the earth, and it will continue until the
          scene is wound up, and Christ descends in the clouds of heaven,
          and the holy angels with him, and the dead in Christ shall rise
          first to meet him at his coming. The Lord Almighty will sustain
          the kingdom and back up his servants and their testimony, and he
          will send judgments, and plagues, and afflictions, and destroying
          angels, and visit the wicked nations with an overwhelming
          destruction. All this is the work of God, and we cannot help it
          if we would. The Lord has decreed that he will build up his
          kingdom in this day and age of the world, and he has decreed that
          it shall accomplish the work it is intended to do, and stand for
          ever. The earth belongs to the Lord. When the devil and his host
          were sent from heaven because of disobedience, they came to this
          world. And wherever the children of men are, there also those
          evil spirits exist to tempt the children of men to do evil, and
          everything that leads to destruction, and misery, and woe
          originates from that source, and everything that leads to
          exaltation, virtue, holiness, goodness, glory, immortality, and
          eternal life is from the hand of God. The Lord is the strongest
          power, and he will prevail at last. In this I rejoice, because
          the earth belongs to him and we belong to him, and if we have any
          blessing, we have got to receive it at his hands. When the first
          missionaries went to England, disembodied spirits sought to
          destroy them, and had there not been an angel of salvation
          present, they would have been slain; nothing but the power of God
          saved them. The visions of their minds were opened, that they saw
          many of the devils that sought their destruction, although not in
          the body but in the spirit, and they stood before them like
          wicked, hideous men, come to destroy them. We had this same power
          to contend with in London. Sometimes they are invisible, and
          sometimes they are in the tabernacles of men. In Carthage jail
          they came in the bodies of men, and were under the influence of
          the devil, and succeeded in shedding the blood of the Prophet,
          and thought they would overthrow the Church and kingdom of God.
          This evil power is manifest and visible more and more as we
          progress in the kingdom of God.
          Let us try to live our religion, and try to be the friends of
          God; and let us make war against the works of the devil. Let us
          seek to overcome ourselves, and all our evil impressions, and
          bring our bodies in subjection to the law of Christ, that we may
          walk in the light of the Lord, gain power with him, and assist in
          sanctifying the earth and in building up temples, and in
          attending to the ordinances of the house of God, that we may be
          saviors of men, both of the living and the dead.
          These are our privileges, and the blessings which the God of
          heaven has put in our hands. Is there any thing in all the
          dominions of the devil of more value to us than the blessing of
          our God, given to us through the organization of his kingdom? We
          have everything to encourage us, and to give us faith and
          peserverence in the work of God. If we do our duty we shall
          prosper, and progress, and spread abroad, and the stakes of Zion
          will be strengthened and her cords lengthened, and ere long we
          shall have power to return and build up the centre stake of Zion,
          and the waste places thereof, and we shall accomplish all we have
          been called to do. May God bless us and give unto us his Spirit
          to guide us in all things. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / George
          Q. Cannon, January 1, 1865
                          George Q. Cannon, January 1, 1865
            Remarks by Elder George Q. Cannon, made in the Tabernacle in
                       Great Salt Lake City, January 1, 1865.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          My prayer and desire is that while I shall attempt to speak unto
          you this afternoon, I may be led and dictated by the Spirit of
          God, and I presume that this is the desire of all the Saints who
          have assembled themselves together for the purpose of worshipping
          our Father and God this afternoon in this tabernacle.
          There is one point that was alluded to this morning by Brother
          Lorenzo Snow, in his remarks, which struck me with a great deal
          of force. It was in relation to the Saints entertaining a feeling
          of gratitude to God for the blessings he has bestowed upon
          us--that the Lord loves those who entertain such feelings, and
          who appreciate the blessings and kindness he bestows upon them.
          This truth accounts for the frequency with which the Elders, when
          led by the Spirit of God and speaking unto the people, dwell upon
          the many blessings, and privileges, and favors we have received
          since our obedience to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. To many
          persons, such frequent allusions to the blessings and favors that
          we enjoy, and the privileges that have been bestowed on us as a
          people, seem unnecessary, and in the ears of some not acquainted
          with us and our character, and with the principles we have
          espoused, sound like egotism; but I can, myself, recognize a
          great propriety in this style of preaching or exhortation. I can
          see that there is a necessity for it; that we should be
          continually stirred up to remember the Lord our God and the
          favors which he has bestowed upon us from the time we embraced
          the Gospel until now; and not only from that time, but from the
          earliest period of our infancy to this time, because his
          kindness, and providence, and long suffering have not been
          extended to us alone since we have embraced the Gospel, but from
          the time of our birth until now.
          The Lord has said that he is angry with none except those who
          acknowledge not his hand in all things. He is angry with those
          who do not acknowledge his hand in the various dispensations of
          providence meted out to man.
          It is right that we, as a people and as individuals, should be
          continually grateful to God for what he has done for us. Unless
          we appreciate these blessings, it is not likely they will be
          increased upon us--it is not reasonable that greater blessings
          than those already received will be bestowed upon us; but if we
          are humble, meek, and filled with thanksgiving and gratitude to
          our Father and God under all circumstances, appreciating and
          putting a high value on the mercies he extends unto us, it is
          more than probable that those blessings and mercies will be
          increased upon us according to our wants and necessities, and we
          shall still have increased cause for gratitude and thanksgiving
          before him.
          While the brethren were blessing the bread, it struck me how
          grateful we ought to be for the blessings which God has
          guaranteed unto us--the great and the inestimable
          blessings--through the death of our Lord and Saviour Jesus
          Christ. How grateful we ought to be every day that we live, that
          our Father and our God has provided a way and means of salvation
          for us, that before we were born and took upon us the form of
          mortal men and women, the Lord in his mercy, and in his wisdom
          and kindness, had provided a way whereby we should be redeemed
          from the power of Satan, from the power of death, and be brought
          back into his presence, and be clothed with immortality and all
          the blessings which attend such a condition. Every time we
          partake of the sacrament, our hearts should swell with
          thanksgiving and gratitude for God's mercy unto us in this
          respect; yet it is too frequently the case with these blessings,
          as with many other blessings which God has bestowed upon us,
          their being so wide-spread prevents us from appreciating them as
          we should were they confined to a few of us and were not bestowed
          upon all the family of man. The blessings of air, of water, of
          the earth--the blessings that all the family of man enjoy in
          common one with another--because they are so widely spread and so
          universally enjoyed, are not appreciated as are other blessings
          which are more confined in their application and in the result
          which attends them to the children of men. The blessings of the
          air we breathe, the earth upon which we tread, of the water which
          courses down in crystal streams to satisfy our wants, and all the
          blessings that are so bountifully bestowed upon us, ought to be
          as much the cause of thanksgiving to our Heavenly Father as
          though they were confined to a few families only. And so, also,
          the great blessings of that salvation, which is extended
          universally, through Christ, to all the children of men who will
          be obedient to his requirements, ought to be appreciated just as
          much as though confined to us alone, to a few families, or to a
          small portion of the community which occupies these valleys.
          The Lord has truly provided for us a plan of salvation that is as
          wide as eternity, that is God-like in its nature and in its
          origin; it is intended to exalt us, his children, and bring us
          back into his presence. For this purpose our Lord and Savior came
          in the meridian of time. His blood was shed that an expiation
          might be made by which the plan of salvation could be completed,
          that we, whose bodies would otherwise continue subject to an
          everlasting sleep in the grave, might have our mortal tabernacles
          resurrected and brought into the presence of our Father and God,
          there to dwell eternally.
          It should be a subject of thanksgiving and gratitude to us that
          we have the privilege of comprehending the truth sufficiently to
          derive the full benefit of the salvation which is offered unto us
          through the death of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ; because
          we are assured in the word of God that there is a class, who
          through their sinfulness and neglect of the privileges and
          opportunities granted unto them, and their disobedience to the
          requirements of God, are cut off from the full benefits of that
          salvation which they would enjoy were they more obedient. But
          unto us is offered the salvation in its fulness, extended through
          the death of Jesus. After we have done with this mortal life we
          are promised a glorious resurrection in the first resurrection,
          and that our bodies shall not sleep in the tomb any length of
          time, only so long as is actually necessary to fulfil the
          requirements of the Lord.
          Through the revelations of the truth, which have been made unto
          us, we are promised all that men and women could ask. All that
          God has ever promised to his faithful children we will receive,
          even every blessing that is necessary for our eternal happiness
          in the presence of God, if we will live subject to the
          requirements he has made of us in the gospel of Jesus Christ.
          This should be a constant theme of thanksgiving in our hearts,
          and I believe it is so; I really believe that the Latter-day
          Saints are the most grateful people upon the face of the earth; I
          believe they give evidence of it in their actions. There is,
          however, room continually given unto us for improvement in this
          respect. We cannot be too grateful; we cannot get to a point
          where there is a necessity for us to slacken in this respect; and
          the more we comprehend of the purposes of our God, the more
          grateful and more full of thanksgiving we will be. I notice that
          among those who are not as fully acquainted as they should be
          with the principles of the Gospel, there is more ingratitude and
          a greater disposition to murmur, and a greater lack of
          thankfulness, than among those who are educated--educated, I
          mean, in the knowledge of the truth, in the principles of life
          and salvation. I notice that among those who have the most
          experience, and have made the greatest advancement in the things
          of God, there is the greatest disposition to be thankful and
          grateful, and to pour out their souls in prayer before God; and I
          notice as the Saints increase in the knowledge of the truth, and
          the comprehension of the principles of life and salvation, their
          disposition in this direction increases with their knowledge.
          Looking at it with the world's view, we have abundant cause to be
          thankful; but to look at it through the light of the Spirit of
          God, our gratitude and thanksgiving should be unbounded to God;
          there should be no limit to it in our hearts every time we
          reflect on our position and on the blessings that have been
          bestowed upon us. What people on the face of the earth to-day can
          compare with us in temporal blessings? And when we look at the
          blessings we enjoy, as Saints of the Most High, from the stand
          point from which the Latter-day Saints should view this work, how
          can we limit the feelings which should animate our hearts
          continually with praise to our Father and God?
          When unprejudiced strangers look upon us, they see our temporal
          advantages, and they think we are a blessed and happy people; but
          there are other blessings that we enjoy. We enjoy promises which
          are extended unto us, of which strangers know nothing--of which
          they have not the least conception; blessings and promises which
          no man can comprehend, except they who have received the Spirit
          of God. We have blessings, we have favors we have causes of
          peace, of which the human family know nothing. While our hearts
          are burning with joy, with happiness and with peace; while the
          Spirit of God is descending upon us and we are filled therewith,
          they who look upon us cannot see or comprehend the spirit that we
          are of--they cannot understand the feelings that animate our
          hearts, they only see us as natural men and women; they know not
          that power which has been communicated unto us and been poured
          out upon us. While we feel as though we could sing Hosannah to
          God and the Lamb, they cannot see anything to cause us to have
          such feelings, because they have not access to that power--to
          that fountain of knowledge, of light, and wisdom, which our God
          has opened unto us as a people. We have, then, in addition to the
          temporal advantages which God has bestowed upon us, abundant
          cause for gratitude on other points.
          There will be no time in the vast future when our cause for
          thanksgiving and for gratitude will cease; for the more we know
          and the more we comprehend the purposes of God, the more
          gratitude we will have. The angels who surround his throne
          indulge in thanksgiving and praise to God and the Lamb to a
          greater extent than we can do, because their causes for
          thanksgiving are greater; they have attained to a glorious
          exaltation, and they bask in the sunshine of the presence of the
          great Eternal. Although they are there, they still have cause to
          sing Hosannah to God and the Lamb; though they are in possession
          of such great blessings, dwelling as they do in a state of
          immortality, and freed from the power of Satan, sin, and death,
          they, nevertheless, see causes for thanksgiving to God our
          Father; and the nearer we approximate to them and to their
          perfection, the more we shall have of this feeling in our hearts,
          the more causes of thanksgiving we will perceive, and the more
          frequently we will express these feelings.
          There is no time that we can conceive of throughout the vast ages
          of eternity, if we continue our onward progress, when we will
          become cloyed in our religion and in our worship of God; it will
          not be a matter of form with us, a duty that will be wearying and
          onerous upon us; on the contrary, it will increase in its
          pleasures. These are reflections connected with the truth as
          revealed to us, which are cheering. If we will let our
          imaginations stretch into the future, there will be no time when
          we will arrive at such a condition that we will, through
          weariness, relax our efforts and our exertions, and cease to feel
          thanksgiving and gratitude; but there will be increased causes
          contributed continually to prompt us to indulge in these feelings
          more and more, and take pleasure in their indulgence.
          There never was a people on the face of the earth to whom the
          same promises have been given as to us. Others, who have preceded
          us in the enjoyment of the blessings of the Gospel, have looked
          forward to the time of their decease, and have seen that after
          they should pass away, the work they then were engaged in would
          disappear form the earth; they saw that the power of the
          adversary would be again wielded to great effect among men, and
          that their labors would be comparatively lost sight of through
          the evil that would prevail upon the earth. But this is not the
          case with us; unto us are extended promises which have never been
          extended to any other people who have lived upon the earth from
          the days of Adam to this time; unto us a promise is given that
          this kingdom shall stand for ever, that it shall not be given
          into the hands of another people, that it shall roll forth,
          increase, and spread abroad until it fills the whole earth--until
          all the inhabitants of the earth can dwell in peace and safety
          under its shadow, being freed from misrule, oppression, and every
          evil that exists among the inhabitants of the earth; that a reign
          of truth and righteousness shall be inaugurated, the reign of God
          and of his Son Jesus Christ on the face of the earth.
          This is the promise which has been extended unto us, and the work
          is committed unto us and to the dispensation in which we live.
          Such a promise was not extended unto Enoch, unto Noah, unto
          Abraham, or unto any of the prophets who succeeded them down to
          the days of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. When the apostles
          asked the Lord Jesus about the restoration of the kingdom, he
          parried their question; it was not for the people who lived in
          that dispensation to participate, while in the flesh, in the
          blessings of the restoration of the kingdom of God on the earth
          and its final establishment in the latter days. It was reserved
          for the great and last dispensation of the fulness of times, that
          great dispensation in which we now live, when the Gospel should
          be restored to the earth in its fulness, and the eternal
          Priesthood be revealed; when every angel and every prophet who
          have lived upon our earth should revisit the earth again, and
          bestow every key and all power and authority which they held on
          the man who was elected to stand at the head of this
          We live in this day, and our posterity will participate in the
          blessings of this dispensation, if we and they should be
          faithful. In looking forward to our future generations for the
          next thousand years, we are not under the necessity of beholding,
          in vision, our posterity straying into darkness in such a manner
          as to close the heavens and shut off the communication between
          God and man. God has taught us differently: he has taught us that
          instead of the heavens becoming more closed, and communications
          less frequent and seldom received, truth will be more abundantly
          bestowed on man; instead of angels ceasing to communicate with
          man, angels will communicate with him more and more until man
          shall bask in the full light of eternity.
          These are the prospects that are extended to us as individuals
          and as a people. Hence, I have said that we have greater cause
          than any other people that ever lived to be thankful to our
          Father and God for what he has done for us and promised unto us;
          yet, do we understand it, do we appreciate it? When we hate the
          Spirit of God resting upon us, and our minds are enlightened by
          it, I presume we do to some extent; we feel then that we would
          constantly witness unto God by our acts that we really appreciate
          his kindness in permitting us to come forth at such a time and be
          associated with such a people. But when the counsels of God come
          to us through his servants, and they are contrary to our
          prepossessed notions, we forget that the inspiration of the
          Almighty is with our brethren, that the power of the Highest is
          with them, and, as Brother Snow alluded to Jonah this morning, if
          we do not go to Tarshish, we frequently go somewhere else to
          avoid doing the things that God requires at our hands.
          Now, the day has come when we, as a people, will have to listen
          to the voice of the servants of God, to the instructions of the
          Almighty through his servants, and obey them as implicitly as
          though God was in our midst. Yet, how often is it the case that,
          when we have counsel imparted unto us, we feel as though we had
          some suggestions to make that would make that counsel better and
          more applicable to us. I have seen the Spirit of God grieved, and
          the understanding of the man of God beclouded by men taking such
          a course as this. When the servant of God has been under the
          inspiration of the Almighty to counsel a certain course, somebody
          has stepped forward and suggested something different, and by
          that means the counsel of God has been darkened, the spirit of
          revelation has been grieved, and the benefit which otherwise
          would be, has not been received.
          I have seen this under various circumstances, and I have looked
          upon it as an evil and something we should never do. When the
          counsel of God comes through his servants to us, we should bow to
          that, no matter how much it may come in contact with our
          pre-conceived ideas; submit to it as though God spoke it, and
          feel such a reverence towards it as though we believed that the
          servant of God has the inspiration of the Almighty resting upon
          him. While many are willing to admit that the servants of God
          understand everything connected with the work of God, and with
          the various departments of it on the earth, they think there are
          some kinds of knowledge which they possess in a superior degree
          to them who preside over us. They will admit that the servants of
          God may possess all the knowledge that is needed to spread the
          Gospel and have it carried to the remotest regions, to build up
          Zion; but there is something connected with their particular
          calling that, they think, they understand to a far greater extent
          than he or they who are appointed to preside over them.
          This feeling is not unfrequently manifested. The persons who
          exhibit it would be reluctant to say in words that this is their
          feeling, but they express it in their actions. This causes an
          interference with the Spirit of God, and frequently counsel is
          darkened by men taking this course. I know that if we follow
          implicitly the counsel of God's servants when they are inspired
          to give counsel, even if they may not know everything about the
          matter, we will be blessed if we bow to it, and God will overrule
          everything for good, and it will result as God wishes it.
          It is a great thing for us to have the counsel and instruction of
          the Almighty in our midst. The servants of God are inspired by
          the power of the Holy Ghost, and the revelations of Jesus are
          within them; and if we follow their counsels strictly, we shall
          be led into the presence of God, and I know that they are the
          only men on the earth who have this power, authority, and
          knowledge. If we take a course of this kind, you can readily
          perceive how harmoniously every thing connected with the work of
          God will roll forth; beauty and order will be witnessed in all
          the ramifications of the kingdom of God at home and abroad, and
          salvation will be extended unto us.
          My prayer and desires are, that the Lord will bless you, and that
          we may have the Spirit and the power of God resting upon us.
          Which may God grant, in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / John
          Taylor, February 5, 1865
                            John Taylor, February 5, 1865
             Remarks by Elder John Taylor, made in the Tabernacle, Great
                      Salt Lake City, Sunday, February 5, 1865.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          I have felt much impressed with the beautiful hymn which our
          choir has just sung, speaking of our Heavenly Father and our
          return again into his presence. We frequently talk about our
          Father who is in heaven, and we delight to dwell upon our
          relationship with him, and anticipate with pleasure the time when
          we shall behold his face, regain his presence, and rejoice with
          him, with the Savior, and with the spirits of the just made
          perfect, in the eternal world. The Lord has revealed a great many
          good and great things unto us, but yet we seem scarcely to
          appreciate the privileges with which we are surrounded and
          blessed, nor to comprehend exactly our true relationship to our
          Heavenly Father.
          I was very much pleased with some remarks made by President Young
          in relation to our Father two or three weeks ago, wherein he
          describes him as being like ourselves, and possessing the power
          to associate with us, and, that if we were to gaze upon him we
          should see a person like ourselves; yet he is spoken of as being
          able to read the thoughts of our hearts, and that a sparrow
          cannot fall to the ground without his notice. There are some
          peculiar expressions in the Scripture and in the revelations that
          we have had given to us, which we may term Scripture, if you
          please, pertaining to our Father who is in heaven. We are told in
          one place that "He is the light that enlighteneth every man that
          cometh into the world." We are told, also, "That every good and
          perfect gift proceeds from the Father of lights, in whom there is
          no variableness nor shadow of turning." We are told in some of
          our revelations, which the Lord has given to us in these last
          days, that "He is the light that is in the sun, and the power
          thereof by which it was made; that he is the light that is in the
          moon, and the power by which it was made; that he is the light
          that is in the stars and the power whereby they were made; and
          that is the same light that enlighteneth the understanding of
          man." According to some of our systems of philosophy, and the
          ideas that theologists would entertain in relation to this
          matter, these remarks would appear strange and incongruous.
          We have been led generally to suppose that the light which
          enlighteneth the understanding of man is what is termed of an
          intellectual character, and differs materially from the solar
          light, or the light of the sun; but if we examine these things
          critically, we shall find that there is mixed up with the
          philosophy of the heavens and the earth things that have been
          altogether out of the reach of human philosophy; that all true
          intelligence, all true wisdom, all intelligence that is of any
          use or benefit to the human family, proceeds from the Lord; that
          he is the fountain of truth, the source of intelligence, and the
          developer of every true and correct principle that is known to
          man upon the earth; that there is no branch of wisdom, of
          science, of philosophy, of good, sound common sense but what
          proceeds from him; and we shall furthermore learn, when we come
          to be acquainted more particularly with heavenly things than we
          are at the present time, that every thing associated with God and
          with his economy, whether upon the earth or in the heavens is
          strictly reasonable and philosophical; and that the only reason
          why we do not comprehend many things that are revealed in former
          times, is because we are not acquainted with the philosophy of
          the heavens, nor the laws that govern the intelligences in the
          eternal worlds. The philosophy of man, of the earth, and of the
          things with which we are surrounded, is deep--it is abstruse; it
          is difficult of comprehension even by the most enlightened mind
          and the most comprehensive and enlarged intellect.
          One great reason why men have stumbled so frequently in many of
          their researches after philosophical truth is, that they have
          sought them with their own wisdom, and gloried in their own
          intelligence, and have not sought unto God for that wisdom that
          fills and governs the universe and regulates all things. That is
          one great difficulty with the philosophers of the world, as it
          now exists, that man claims to himself to be the inventor of
          everything he discovers; any new law and principle which he
          happens to discover he claims to himself instead of giving glory
          to God.
          There are some ideas that have occurred to me lately in relation
          to man, if I could only express them, which I consider have been
          revealed by listening to the communications of others, and
          through the inspiration of the Spirit of the Lord. There is
          something peculiar in the organization of man, particularly in
          regard to his mind. We can think, we can reflect, we can conceive
          of things, we can form our judgment of events that are
          transpiring around; but it is difficult for us to perceive or to
          comprehend how those things are accomplished, and by what process
          they are brought about. A man, for instance, can store up in his
          memory thousands and tens of thousands of things. A good
          linguist, for example, can retain in his memory thousands of
          words in his own language, and thousands and tens of thousands in
          other languages, and he can draw upon these when he pleases, and
          remember their significations. I can remember the time, some
          years ago, when no person could tell me a passage in the Bible
          but what I could turn to it; I could not remember every passage,
          but I knew their connections and could tell others where they
          could find them.
          President Young's memory is remarkable in regard to names and
          persons. I have travelled with him throughout the length and
          breadth of this Territory, and I do not know that I have ever yet
          seen him come in contact with a man whose name he did not
          remember and the circumstances connected with him. There is
          something remarkable in this.
          Again, on theological subjects, a man will remember not only all
          the doctrines which he himself believes, but also the doctrines
          of various systems of religion that exist in the world, and be
          enabled to separate, to describe, or define them. Now, the
          question is, where are all these things stowed away? What book
          are they written in; where are they recorded? A man may travel
          over the earth, he may visit towns, cities, and villages, and
          gaze upon oceans, seas, rivers, streams, mountains, valleys, and
          plains; upon landscapes and different kinds of scenery, and make
          himself acquainted with all the vegetable world, and these
          pictures and this intelligence is carefully laid away somewhere.
          He may study chemistry, botany, geology, astronomy, geography,
          natural history, mechanics, the arts and sciences, and every
          thing in creation which man is capacitated to receive and store
          it away in his memory from the time of his youth up to old age.
          There is something very remarkable in that. And then the question
          arises, how do we judge of those things? If a man sees a thing,
          how does he see it? There is something very remarkable in the
          construction of the human eye; it is something like these
          photographic instruments that receive impressions, only he gazes
          upon them and his eye takes them in, and the scene he gazes upon
          is actually imprinted upon what is called the retina of the eye;
          and one thing after another is recorded, until thousands, and
          tens of thousands, and millions of things are laid away through
          that medium, and he is enabled to see any of these things
          whenever he pleases; his will can call them forth, and they pass
          in panoramic form before his vision from some source, where they
          are deposited and registered; all those things that he has gazed
          upon, that he has handled with his hands, or felt by the sense of
          touch, he can call up at his pleasure. There is something
          remarkable in this when we reflect upon it. Men talk about this
          registry being in the brain, but mens' heads do not get any
          larger. When men get what is called the "big head," it is because
          there is nothing in their heads. The heart gets no bigger, the
          body no larger, and yet all these records are laid away
          Let us examine the Scriptures in relation to some things, and see
          what they say concerning man. "But there is a spirit in man, and
          the inspiration of the Almighty giveth it understanding." We
          learn from this that there is a spirit in man in addition to this
          outward frame, to these hands, these eyes, this body, with all
          its powers, and appliances, and members; there is a spirit, an
          essence--a principle of the Almighty, if you please--a peculiar
          essence that dwells in this body, that seems to be inseparably
          connected therewith.
          We are told in a revelation which the Lord has given unto us,
          "That the body and the spirit is the soul of man"--that the two,
          when combined, form what is termed in Scripture the soul. Now,
          then, according to this, man would be what may be termed a
          natural and a spiritual being--a being connected with the
          tabernacle that is associated with this earth, and earthy, and
          another being that is connected with the heavens, or heavenly;
          some would term it a temporal and a spiritual organization. It is
          difficult, however, to find words to convey ideas correctly in
          relation to these matters; our language is meagre when we speak
          of heavenly things, because it is made for earthly beings, and
          not for the heavenly; and therefore it does not embrace with that
          distinctness and clearness those heavenly forms of speech which
          might convey to our intelligence more clearly those ideas we can
          better reflect upon than we can express. But, suffice it to say
          that there are two natures, if you please, mixed up in the human
          body; the one is what we term material, and the other, some would
          call it, immaterial; but then, that is not a right phrase--the
          one is earthly, or pertaining to the earth, that is, liable to
          decay; the other is heavenly, more spiritual--an essence or being
          that cannot be destroyed; and hence, says Jesus in speaking
          concerning this, "And I say unto you, my friends, be not afraid
          of them that kill the body, and after that, have no more that
          they can do. But I will forewarn you whom you shall fear. Fear
          Him, which after he hath killed, hath power to cast into hell;
          yea, I say unto you, fear Him."
          The body itself is a very remarkable structure or machine. Let me
          refer to some few items associated with it--to the mediums
          through which we receive the intelligence of which we speak. For
          instance, the eye. How is it that you receive impressions into
          the eye? Just in the same way as impressions are received by a
          daguerreotype instrument, and they are planted there in what is
          termed the retina of the eye; there are placed there a number of
          small nerves which receive these impressions and convey the
          intelligence somewhere, in some manner, that it is laid away in
          some place where it can be called up. When we reflect upon and
          witness their peculiar powers, we discover operations that are
          very remarkable, comprehensive, accurate, and mysterious; you can
          see a mountain to the distance of fifty miles, and your eye will
          take it in and receive the impression; you can gaze upon a
          thousand objects, and your eye will register them all, and will
          convey an exact likeness of them, so that you can describe by
          language, if you have the power to use it, a true resemblance of
          the objects your vision takes in, so nice and so precise are the
          figures conveyed to the human mind through the instrumentality of
          the eye; so acute, so impalpable, so ethereal and refined is its
          action and power, that its susceptibilities approach very near to
          the spiritual, although it is temporal, so called.
          Again, the power of smell is very peculiar; perfumes of various
          kinds will last for years, and their various odors can be
          distinguished by you. Take, for instance, a Tonquin bean, or a
          rose. The former is very small, and yet it continues to emit or
          exude, year after year, myriads of small, infinitesimal
          particles, without any sensible diminution, all of which are
          charged or impregnated with its own peculiar aroma; and convey
          this delicate, impalpable matter to the organs of the nose, and
          so exquisitely sensitive are the nerves associated with the nasal
          organ, that the minuteness of this touch, and the peculiar odor
          of the Tonquin bean, the rose, or any other peculiar aroma, is
          conveyed as distinctly to the understanding as words or signs of
          any kind can convey impressions to the human mind. This, indeed,
          mysterious, yet strictly demonstrative, although, like the
          capacity of the eye, it approaches the spiritual or ethereal.
          Our sense of hearing is also another remarkable instance of the
          peculiar sensitiveness of the organs of the human system. While I
          am speaking to you, there is not in this vast assembly a man,
          woman, or child that does not hear my voice at this time; all
          present can distinguish every word I say. How do they hear it? My
          voice causes a vibration in the atmosphere, the same as when a
          stone is thrown into the water; the water undulates, and a
          succession of waves are produced, which, if undisturbed, spread
          in continuous increasing circles, until the disturbing force is
          exhausted. So, in like manner, the action of the voice operates,
          or vibrates, upon the atmosphere, which is full of impalpable
          atoms or globules that undulate, vibrate and rush against each
          other with great rapidity above, below, around, carrying with
          great accuracy and distinctness, and conveying the sound so
          correctly, that every man and woman hears alike; the sound is
          conveyed in an inexplicable manner to the drum of the ear. The
          nerves are affected, and those nerves convey intelligence to the
          congregation I am now talking to--to the understandings of those
          who hear me.
          We are made in the image of God, we were designed by the
          intelligence of God, and the organs we have are the same kind of
          organs that the Gods themselves possess. I consider that the body
          and the spirit are connected together in some inscrutable,
          indefinable, and intelligent manner; that, if we comprehended,
          would be a greater wonder and mystery to us than anything that we
          have already referred to.
          Now, then, let me speak of another subject immediately connected
          with this. President Young remarked; and we are informed in the
          Scriptures, and that was one of the things that led me to reflect
          about some of these matters, as well as in our own revelations,
          something like this, that "God sees and knows the acts of all
          men." We read something like this, "But I say unto you, that
          every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account
          thereof in the day of judgment." Now, this is a remarkable
          declaration. Look at the millions of human beings that inhabit
          this earth, and that have inhabited it from the creation up to
          the present time. It is supposed, generally, by the best
          authorities, that from eight hundred to a thousand millions of
          people live upon this earth at the same time, that is, this has
          been the case for a great many generations at least; they are
          coming and going continually, they pass into the world by
          thousands and tens of thousands, and go out of it in the same way
          daily; a daily stream of this kind is coming and going. Then, if
          we could discover the thoughts and reflections of these numerous
          millions of human beings, look at the wisdom, the intelligence,
          the folly, the nonsense, the good and the evil that is connected
          with every one of them, it is so vast and complicated that the
          human mind could not receive it, and it seems as if it would be
          almost a thing impossible for God to gaze upon the whole of
          them,--to comprehend the whole, and judge of the whole correctly.
          How shall this be done? My understanding of the thing is, that
          God has made each man a register within himself, and each man can
          read his own register, so far as he enjoys his perfect faculties.
          This can be easily comprehended.
          Let your memories run back, and you can remember the time when
          you did a good action, you can remember the time when you did a
          bad action; the thing is printed there, and you can bring it out
          and gaze upon it whenever you please. As I stated before, if you
          have studied language, you can call that out at pleasure; you can
          show the distinction between the different parts of speech very
          readily. If you have studied mechanism, your mind will go to the
          place where you saw a certain machine, and you will go to work
          and make one like it. If you have travelled in cities, you can
          tell what kind of houses and streets composed the different
          cities you passed through, and the character of the people you
          associated with; and you can ruminate upon them, and reflect upon
          them by day or by night whenever you think proper, and call the
          things up which you did and saw. Where do you read all this? In
          your own book. You do not go to somebody else's book or library,
          it is written in your own record, and you there read it. Your
          eyes and ears have taken it in, and your hands have touched it;
          and then your judgment, as it is called, has acted upon it--your
          reflective powers. Now, if you are in possession of a spirit or
          intellectuality of that kind, whereby you are enabled to read
          your own acts, do you not think that that being who has placed
          that spirit and that intelligence within you holds the keys of
          that intelligence, and can read it whenever he pleases? Is not
          that philosophical, reasonable, and scriptural? I think it is.
          Where did I derive my intelligence from that I possess? From the
          Lord God of Hosts, and you derived your intelligence from the
          same source. Where did any man that exists or breathes the breath
          of life throughout this whole universe get any intelligence he
          has? He got it from the same source. Then it would be a very
          great curiosity if I should be able to teach you something and
          not know that something myself. How could I teach you A, B, C, if
          I did not know the alphabet, or the rudiments of the English
          Grammar, or anything else, if I did not know it myself? I could
          not do it. Well, then, upon this principle we can readily
          perceive how the Lord will bring into judgment the actions of men
          when he shall call them forth at the last day. Let me refer to
          some things in the Scriptures pertaining to this matter.
          Nebuchadnezzar had a dream, in which he saw a variety of things
          pass before him. By-and-by the dream was taken from him, and he
          could not remember it; and he called upon the magicians, and
          soothsayers, and astrologers to give unto him the dream and the
          interpretation thereof, but they said it was too hard a thing for
          them to do; they could not give the king this information, for
          nobody can know these things but the Gods whose dwelling is not
          with flesh. They believed, as we do, that there is a Being that
          had spirit and intelligence above the other gods, and that he
          alone could unravel those mysteries. Finally, the king sent for
          Daniel, and Daniel knew nothing about it until he prayed unto the
          Lord, and the Lord showed it to him; for the Lord had given the
          dream to Nebuchadnezzar, and if he had given it to one, he could
          to another. He could read it in Nebuchadnezzar's mind or spirit
          in the record which He kept. He revealed the same thing to
          Daniel, who said unto the king, "Thou sawest a great image; its
          head was of gold, its arms and breast of silver, its belly and
          thighs of brass, its legs of iron, and its feet and toes part of
          iron and part of clay." When Nebuchadnezzar heard the dream which
          he had forgotten, he gave glory to the God of Israel, because he
          could reveal secrets and manifest things which had been
          manifested to him. We look at things again on natural principles,
          according to things that we can judge upon by our natural senses.
          A man gazes upon a thing in the day-dime, he goes to sleep, his
          senses are gone, he wakes up in the morning, and he remembers the
          things he had forgotten in his sleep--they are remembered as
          fresh as ever. There have been men afflicted by what the
          physicians call catalepsy; they lose their senses for a period of
          time, sometimes for years, and in that state they are entirely
          ignorant of their former existence; they do not know any events
          that transpire, they cannot read their own register; but the
          moment their senses come to them, they reflect and begin at the
          place they left off when they became deranged. Man sleeps the
          sleep of death, but the spirit lives where the record of his
          deeds is kept--that does not die--man cannot kill it; there is no
          decay associated with it, and it still retains in all its
          vividness the remembrance of that which transpired before the
          separation by death of the body and the ever-living spirit. Man
          sleeps for a time in the grave, and by-and-by he rises again from
          the dead and goes to judgment; and then the secret thoughts of
          all men are revealed before Him with whom we have to do; we
          cannot hide them; it would be in vain for a man to say then, I
          did not do so-and-so; the command would be, Unravel and read the
          record which he has made of himself, and let it testify in
          relation to these things, and all could gaze upon it. If a man
          has acted fraudulently against his neighbor--has committed
          murder, or adultery, or any thing else, and wants to cover it up,
          that record will stare him in the face, he tells the story
          himself, and bears witness against himself. It is written that
          Jesus will judge not after the sight of the eye, or after the
          hearing of the ear, but with righteousness shall he judge the
          poor, and reprove with equity the meek of the earth. It is not
          because somebody has seen things, or heard anything by which a
          man will be judged and condemned, but it is because that record
          that is written by the man himself in the tablets of his own
          mind--that record that cannot lie--will in that day be unfolded
          before God and angels, and those who shall sit as judges. There
          will be some singular developments then, I think. If this is to
          be the case, as was said formerly, "What manner of persons ought
          we to be in all holy conversation and godliness?" There is, in
          fact, something in this, that in a partial degree can be read
          even on this earth. There are men who profess to be phrenologists
          and physiologists who profess to read character, and perhaps some
          man, from a knowledge of human nature and from a study of the
          human mind, can, upon natural principles, unfold a great many
          things. And there is associated with this Church such a gift as
          is called the discerning of spirits; but it is one of those
          things which we see in part and understand in part, etc.; "but
          when that which is in part is done away, and that which is
          perfect has come, then we shall see as we are seen, and know as
          we are known." That is only a part of what the other will be the
          perfection of. When we get into the eternal world, into the
          presence of God our Heavenly Father, his eye can penetrate every
          one of us, and our own record of our lives here shall develop
          all. I do not say that he will take trouble to read everybody. We
          read concerning the apostles in former times, that when Jesus
          should sit in judgment, they should be seated upon twelve
          thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel; and it is also
          written, "Know ye not that the Saints shall judge the world?" Who
          will be judges of the world in this generation? You, yourselves,
          who understand the laws of the Priesthood must say, Now, then, if
          these things are so, it behoves us to consider and ponder well
          the paths of our feet, it behoves me to be careful what I do,
          what doctrines I advance, what principles I inculcate, and see to
          it that I do my duty before God, and the angels, and all men, for
          I cannot obliterate the record which is written here. If I am
          engaged in business transactions of any kind, it behoves me to
          know what I am doing; that I am dealing as I would wish men to
          deal with me; if I do not, the record is there. I think we read
          somewhere, that if our own conscience condemn us, God is greater
          than our conscience; "if our own hearts condemn us, God is
          greater than our hearts." If I be a father and have charge of
          family, it behoves me to know what kind of an example I set
          before them, and how I conduct myself; it behoves both fathers
          and mothers to know that they are making a record of their doings
          that they will not be ashamed of. It behoves children to know
          what kind of a course they take towards their parents, and
          towards the building up of the kingdom of God upon the earth. If
          I am an Elder in Israel, or whatever office I hold in the Church,
          it behoves me to comprehend my position, know myself, and act as
          a Saint of God in all things, which may the Lord help us to do in
          the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / Heber
          C. Kimball, February 19, 1865
                         Heber C. Kimball, February 19, 1865
             Remarks made by President Heber C. Kimball, at Centerville,
                                 February 19, 1865.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          I desire most humbly to talk very simply to my brethren and
          sisters. It is as much my duty as it is the duty of any other
          member of this Church to learn how to be a Saint. I have got to
          learn how to be a truthful man, an honest man, an upright man,
          and I have got to make myself competent, through faithfulness to
          God and my brethren, to teach others with propriety. It is a
          common saying "Do as I say but not as I do;" but I want to do
          just as I teach you to do without any deviation. There is not
          anything in my calling that will justify me in doing wrong. It
          would be nonsense for me to undertake to preach righteousness,
          virtue, truthfulness, and justice, and not be a righteous,
          virtuous, and just man myself. You hold hood which I hold; it is
          no matter what office you hold in that Priesthood, and it has all
          emanated out of the holy Apostleship, making these different
          offices and callings branches of the Apostleship. We all have a
          Priesthood to honor, which it is impossible for us to do unless
          we honor ourselves; and all who hold the Priesthood and honor
          themselves, are worthy of honor; and it is impossible to honor
          the Priesthood in that man and not honor the vessel that holds
          We can command the respect of all men as a people by making
          ourselves self-sustaining, by acquiring a knowledge of all kinds
          of mechanical business; and our sisters can make themselves
          honorable by learning to knit, weave, and spin; how to make a
          harness for a loom, and how to warp the yarn, after they have
          spun and colored it. Every young woman who calculates to be wife
          and a mother, should make herself acquainted with these matters.
          Is there any female in our society too good to learn and work at
          this home industry? I think not. If there are any who consider
          themselves so, they are also too good to wear home-made clothing.
          The Priesthood is also with the woman, because she is connected
          with the man, and the man is connected with his God. Being so
          connected, we must all be honorable if we are good.
          The earth is enlightened by the same light which enlightens our
          eyes, which is the light of Christ, which enlighteneth every son
          and daughter of Adam and Eve who cometh into the world, and it is
          the same light by which I see you this morning. And we have, in
          addition to this, a holy Priesthood, and have been commanded to
          go forth and preach the Gospel, and teach the ways of life to all
          men, and not to be taught by unbelievers. We are also instructed
          to lead all meetings as we are dictated by the Holy Ghost. The
          spirit of truth is the spirit of revelation, which we may all
          possess, for it is the privilege of all Latter-day Saints so to
          live and honor God as to receive of his attributes and nature in
          greater perfection, and become more like Him. We are the sons and
          daughters of God; we have proceeded from him through the laws of
          generation, the same as my children have proceeded from me. God
          is the great father of our race, and as a man is not perfect
          without the woman, neither is the woman without the man in the
          Lord; they depend upon each other, and are necessary to each
          other for the propagation of our species.
          I enjoyed myself very much at your party last night. Such social
          gatherings are always good in their effects, so long as we keep
          within the purview of the religion of Jesus Christ in all such
          exercises. It is my privilege and duty to live so as to become a
          good man, as much so as any man in this Church and kingdom. Being
          an Apostle does not excuse me in the least from the performance
          of every duty which the religion of Jesus makes binding upon me;
          and, as far as I am concerned, I live as faithfully as possible,
          considering the failings of mortality which I have in common with
          all men. There is not a day passes over my head that I do not bow
          before the Lord once, twice, or thrice; that is the way I have
          got to live, in order to be a good man, and retain the light of
          the Holy Spirit to guide me into all truth; and the same
          faithfulness is required of you, because you are members of the
          same body and of the same Priesthood. We should all be alive in
          the performance of our duties. We cannot live the religion of
          Jesus and not pray. I have had an experience in this Church of
          some thirty-two years. I commenced to pray before I heard of the
          Work of the last days, and I have prayed every day from that day
          until the present time. I have never been in a circumstance or
          place wherein I could not pray, if I was disposed to do so. As
          faith without works is dead, being alone, so our religion is of
          no benefit to us without prayer. I cannot live and be prospered
          in the kingdom of God only by a faithful attendance to every
          duty. When Jesus Christ came to the world as the messenger of
          life and salvation, he called upon all the ends of the earth to
          come unto him and be saved, for besides him there is no Savior.
          He also said, I am the true vine and my Father is the husbandman,
          that is, he proceeded from the Father; and he further says to the
          twelve, "And ye are the branches;" and he exhorted them to abide
          in him even as he abideth in the Father. In doing this they
          partake of the same spirit. If we abide not in Him, we become
          like a limb that is dead and ready to be burned.
          My being one of the First Presidency of the Church does not
          excuse me from living my religion; but I should, on that account,
          be more faithful, and show an example to the flock of Christ, and
          constantly be alive to know how things are progressing in the
          Church, and be dictated by the Holy Ghost in every act of my
          life, that I may have power to discern the spirits of men, and be
          able to give unto them the very counsel that my Father in heaven
          would give them if he were here himself. I endeavor to take this
          course, and when I give counsel, I do not run against Brother
          Brigham, because I am led by the same spirit. You call these
          things little things, but they are as big things as I know of;
          these things lie at the root of the matter, and from them spring
          the fruits of righteousness. The main roots of a tree are fed by
          the little fibres, and from them spring the trunk, and the
          branches, and the fruit. Let us cultivate those principles which
          lie at the root of all righteousness, that our professions and
          works may accord with each other, instead of being contented with
          a mere form of godliness, without power or foundation. This
          Church is founded upon eternal truth; its roots run into
          eternity, and all the power of the devil and wicked men may seek
          its overthrow in vain, for it will triumph over death, hell, and
          the grave. I know this. I know it by revelation--by the Spirit of
          God, for in this way my Heavenly Father communes with me, and
          maketh known unto me his mind and will. I have never seen him in
          person, but when I see my brethren I see his image, and I
          discover the attributes of God in them. Then let us honor our
          bodies and spirits, which are made in the likeness of him who has
          created all things and upholds them by his power.
          I have never seen a time since I entered this Church when there
          was greater necessity for this people living faithfully than now.
          It is a very prosperous time, and we are gaining property fast;
          and many, I fear, are losing sight of everything else but the
          riches of this world; and, were you to warn them of it, they are
          so blinded by the deceitfulness of riches, that they would not
          believe a word you say. The more people stray away from God the
          harder it is to make them sensible of their danger; and the more
          light that men and women possess, the easier it is to correct
          them when they go astray; because they are more like the clay
          that is in the hands of the potter, and they can be moulded and
          fashioned according to the will and pleasure of the master
          potter. We have got to walk very faithfully before our Father in
          heaven, and strive with all our might to honor the covenants we
          have made with him in his house.
          I do not say but that you are just as good men and women in this
          place as in any other place in the mountains; yea, I admit that
          the people are better in the country towns than in Great Salt
          Lake City, for the froth and scum of hell seem to concentrate
          there, and those who live in the City have to come in contact
          with it; and with persons who mingle with robbers, and liars, and
          thieves, and with whores and whore-masters, etc. Such wicked men
          will also introduce themselves into Davis County, and among all
          the settlements throughout these mountains; but where the people
          are truly righteous and just, wicked men can do them no harm;
          were the people all righteous who profess to be Latter-day
          Saints, they would constantly be on their watch against the
          encroachment of a wicked power. The wicked and corrupt who have
          settled in our community are taking a course to lead away those
          who are willing to be led away from the truth--those who have
          turned away from God; and it will be for our good, as a
          community, if such persons will leave and never again return to
          our Territory, unless they can do so with a determination to
          serve God and keep his commandments. I love those who love God;
          they are more precious to me than gold, and silver, or
          Do we live our religion as faithfully as we might? Are we not in
          the habit of telling lies now and them? Oh, yes, we tell
          occasionally a white lie, or a little catnip lie, once in a
          while. We should be perfectly truthful and honest in all our
          sayings and dealings with all men, especially with those who
          serve the same God that we do, and are in the bonds of the same
          religion. How to do this is one of the great mysteries of the
          kingdom of heaven. By telling these little fibs we lose the
          spirit of the Lord and get into darkness, then the simplest truth
          becomes a mystery to us; but when our minds are enlightened by
          the spirit of truth, everything is plain and clear to the
          understanding. People get an idea that there is no sin in little
          lies, or catnip lies. You read in the Book of Mormon, where it is
          said that the devil goeth about deceiving the children of men,
          and tells them to lie a little, and steal a little, and take the
          advantage of your neighbour a little, and speak against thy
          neighbors a little, and do wrong a little here and a little
          there, and thus he leadeth them with silken cords, as it were,
          down to destruction. It is just as much a crime to steal a penny
          or a cent as it is to steal a quarter of a dollar--the quarter of
          a dollar is more in value than the cent, but what difference is
          there in the crime? These little things we are apt to pass over
          unnoticed, but they will operate materially against your
          obtaining that glory with you design to inherit in the next
          existence. If little wrongs are not checked, they will lead on to
          greater ones, until we are cheated out of our salvation. By
          checking these little wrongs, as they are called, we become more
          grounded and rooted in the faith of Christ, as a tree is rooted
          and grounded in the earth.
          We ought not to take a course to injure each other. A man holding
          the Priesthood of the Son of God, a High Priest for instance,
          will try to destroy the influence of a better man, causing him to
          walk in sorrow, that he, the High Priest, may step over him and
          get to some particular distinction; but as the Lord lives, and as
          the sun shines, such men will be deceived in their designs, and
          will receive in full the measure they have tried to measure out
          to others. In our deal with each other, it is better to give a
          man a dollar than to take a cent from him; by wronging a man of a
          dollar or a few cents, you may thereby cause a division between
          yourself and one of your best friends. What for? For a poor,
          miserable dollar. I have been, and am now, subject to many
          weaknesses that I would guard you against, but I am trying to
          fortify myself and overcome every evil that is in me. 
          I will relate a little incident in my own experience to
          illustrate the selfishness of the human heart, and how by
          perseverance it can be overcome. I have lately been at work
          putting down some carpets in the endowment rooms. I had a piece
          of good carpet myself, and a spirit came upon me which whispered,
          "Brother Heber, you may just as well put that carpet into the
          endowment house as let it lie on one of your floors." Before I
          got it out of doors to move it to the endowment house, my
          generous feeling puckered up and a thought came to me, that the
          Church was fully able to carpet its own rooms. I took the carpet
          and put it away again. In a day or two afterwards a thought came
          to me like this, "Heber, you had better take that carpet and use
          it in the Lord's house, for before the spring it may be eat up
          with moths." I looked at the carpet again, after bringing it from
          its hiding place, and said to myself, "That is really a pretty
          carpet; it is almost too good to put down in that house," and I
          put it away again. The thought came to me again, "You had better
          put it in the endowment house and beautify the Lord's house with
          it, for the Lord may notice it, and he will, no doubt, see you
          dressing up and adorning his house." I seized the carpet again
          and dragged it out of doors at once, and placed myself between it
          and the door, saying to the carpet, "You do not go back again
          into that room any more." I presume that nearly all of you have
          had just such feelings and just such fightings against the power
          of evil in yourselves, and against carrying into effect your good
          and generous intentions.
          The other day my wife was sick; she came to me and requested me
          to pray to the Lord that she might be healed. The matter passed
          from my mind. The day following this I remarked to her that I had
          not seen her looking so well for some time previous. She replied,
          "I am perfectly sound." I had forgotten about her request that I
          should pray for her, and had not done so; but she was healed
          through her honesty, faith, and integrity towards the holy
          Priesthood. She reverenced and honored it; the Holy Spirit saw
          it, and the angels of God saw it, and she was healed by the power
          of God, without the laying on of hands. It was with that
          circumstance as it was anciently. "The centurion answered and
          said, Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldst come under my
          roof; but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed."
          We who hold the Priesthood do not honor each other as we ought in
          our intercourse with each other; if we do not honor each other,
          how can we expect to be honored by God and by his Holy Spirit,
          who seeth us and is cognizant of all we do. We must try to
          overcome all unpleasant and unkind language towards each other,
          and strive to have our intercourse such as angels will applaud.
          It is written, "resist the devil and he will flee from you." Some
          people do not believe that there are any devils. There are
          thousands of evil spirits that are just as ugly as evil can make
          them. The wicked die, and their spirits remain not far from where
          their tabernacles are. When I was in England, twenty-eight years
          ago next June, I saw more devils than there are persons here
          to-day; they came upon me with an intention to destroy me; they
          are the spirits of wicked men who, while in the flesh, were
          opposed to God and his purposes. I saw them with what we call the
          spiritual eyes, but what is in reality the natural eye. The
          atmosphere of many parts of these mountains is doubtless the
          abode of the spirits of Gadianton robbers, whose spirits are as
          wicked as hell, and who would kill Jesus Christ and every Apostle
          and righteous person that ever lived if they had the power. It is
          by the influence of such wicked spirits that men and women are
          all the time tempted to tell little lies, to steal a little, to
          take advantage of their neighbor a little, and they tell us there
          is no harm in it. It is by the influence and power of evil
          spirits that the minds of men are prejudiced against each other,
          until they are led to do each other an injury, and sometimes to
          kill each other.
          We are the sons and daughters of God if we are faithful and honor
          our calling, and he has respect unto one as much as unto another.
          In a revelation given to Joseph Smith, it is written, "And again
          I say unto you, let every man esteem his brother as himself; for
          what man among you having twelve sons and is no respecter of
          them, and they serve him obediently, and he saith unto the one,
          be thou clothed in robes, and sit thou here; and to the other, be
          thou clothed in rags, and sit thou there, and looketh upon his
          sons and saith, I am just?" In this way the Lord looks upon this
          people, and I feel to say, God bless this people with all the
          power I have got, and with all the good feeling, and with all the
          Priesthood of the Son of God I bless you in the name of Jesus
          Christ, and I pray for you and for all this people. Oh, how I
          desire for us all to be one; for if we are not one, we must see
          sorrow. Brother Brigham says, If we live our religion and keep
          the commandments of God, we shall never be moved. That is true.
          If we are ever disturbed again by our enemies, it will be because
          we are unfaithful. The first Presidency of this Church and others
          may be just as righteous and holy as our Father in heaven, and
          yet a portion of this people can, by their wrong doing, bring
          sorrow and suffering upon us. The first Presidency, and thousands
          of others in this Church, are not guilty of crime; we have done
          right all the time, and we have to suffer for those who are
          punished for their sins. When one or two among a family are
          wayward and break the laws of the land, see what sorrow, and
          tears, and disgrace it brings upon the whole family. It is just
          so with us. But oh! my desires are for you to do right, and honor
          your calling, and work faithfully under the dictation of
          President Young and others who are co-workers with him in the
          great Work of the last days.
          I feel that I would be willing to work day and night to do my
          brethren and sisters good. I want the rising generation to come
          forth and secure their blessings in the house of the Lord, that
          they may be saved from the evil into which they might otherwise
          fall. If our sons could fully and clearly see the propriety of
          living their religion, they would from this day cease to mingle
          with wicked persons; and our daughters, too, if they understood
          the consequences, would never be found giving themselves in
          marriage to wicked men. As parents and teachers, we should try
          with all of our ability to impress upon the minds of our young
          people, by precept and example, principles of truth, that they
          may not remain uncontrolled and exposed to all the allurements of
          sin. We should tie them to us by the saving principles of the
          Gospel. I want to see this people established in peace, and in a
          way that they can sway the sceptre of King Emmanuel over the
          whole earth before I lay my body down to sleep a short time in
          the grave.
          Let us remember that the liberal man deviseth liberal things, and
          by his liberality he shall live. I can tell you a hundred
          instances where I have been poor and penniless, and did not know
          what course to take, and the evil one would tempt me and seek to
          make me bow down in sorrow, but I would rise up in the name of
          the Lord, shake off my cares, exclaiming, I know that my Father
          in heaven lives and has respect for me; then I have been blessed,
          and my way has been opened before me. "Seek and you shall find,
          knock and it shall be opened unto you. Draw near to God and he
          will draw nigh unto you." Oh! what a great comfort it is to know
          that you live in the favor of your Father in heaven. If I am
          faithful, I know it is not in the power of any man upon earth to
          throw an obstruction between me and Him.
          Truth has sprung from the earth, and righteousness has looked
          down from heaven, and they have met and have kissed each
          other--they are one. It should be just so with those who possess
          the holy Priesthood of the Son of God; it never will lead one man
          to contend against another, and the angels of God never will
          cause any person to contend about any of the follies of this
          world, for all the glory of this world is perfectly worthless
          without God. The life of man is but a few days, and these few
          days well spent will be spent to secure a place in the heaven of
          eternal rest. Seeing that we have only a few days allotted us to
          secure so great a blessing, why can we not be faithful every day
          and every hour of our lives; and why do we yield the point to
          wicked influences and spend our precious moments in that which
          yieldeth no profit? 
          We shall soon pass away and return again with renewed and
          immortal bodies that will not be subject to sickness and death;
          then shall we have plenty of time and opportunity to adorn the
          earth and make it glorious, as we should be doing now, in order
          to gain an experience by which we may be profited hereafter. We
          came here into this world to gain an experience and to serve God
          and keep his commandments. May peace be with you, and comfort and
          consolation be multiplied upon you and all the Saints in these
          valleys and in all the world. I do not fear the wicked, they can
          do nothing against the truth; let us be troubled about doing
          right ourselves, and I am willing to risk all the rest. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / John
          Taylor, March 5, 1865
                             John Taylor, March 5, 1865
             Remarks by Elder John Taylor, made in the Tabernacle, Great
                       Salt Lake City, Sunday, March 5, 1865.
                              Reported by E. L. Sloan.
          As we travel along through what is sometimes called this "vale of
          tears," there are many thoughts that occupy our minds, and many
          subjects for reflection present themselves, sometimes concerning
          the living and sometimes concerning the dead. However, it is with
          the living that we have to do at the present time, and it is
          "Life and the pursuit of happiness" that ought to occupy the
          attention of all intellectual beings. Mankind have various views
          and ideas in relation to the attainment of happiness upon the
          earth, and also after we leave the earth; and those views and
          ideas that are entertained by us in relation to these matters
          influence, to a greater or less extent, our actions and
          proceedings in life. We look at things through another medium,
          and judge of them from another stand-point, than which they are
          generally viewed by the inhabitants of the earth. We look upon it
          that the greatest happiness that we can attain to is in securing
          the approbation of our Heavenly Father, in fearing God, in being
          made acquainted with his laws--with the principles of eternal
          truth, and with those things that we consider will best promote
          not only our temporal, but our eternal happiness.
          There are a great many men in the world who, in the abstract,
          would say this is correct--that it is very proper for man, who is
          made in the image of God, to fear him. They would sing as Wesley
                 "Wisdom to silver we prefer,
                  And gold is dross compared with her:
                  In her right hand are length of days,
                  True riches and immortal praise," &c.
          But then, when we come to scan the matter more minutely, we find
          that it is, really, only in the abstract that these things are
          viewed, and that people, generally, carry their religion very
          easily. They wear it very loosely about them. They do not enter
          into it with that earnestness and zeal which we, as a people,
          generally do. Hence, there is quite a difference between them and
          us in these particulars. Men generally suppose that it is well
          enough to fear God on Sunday, and perhaps attend to religion a
          little during the week, but not much; that a course of the latter
          kind would interfere too much with the daily avocations of life;
          and that it would be almost impossible for the generality of
          mankind to attend to these things in the way that we, as a
          people, believe in. Preaching, for instance, they believe must be
          done by a man specially set apart for the purpose, who by that
          means obtains his living, just as another man would in the
          profession of law, or in any other avocation or trade. In the
          Church of England, with which I was first connected--inducted
          into it when a boy, or rather a child-- they have not only
          ministers to read their prayers, but clerks to say amen for them,
          so that the people have literally nothing to do but go to
          meeting. Men may profess religion and be drunkards, riotous,
          fraudulent, debauchees, &c.; yet that does not make much
          difference, for when they die and are put into consecrated
          ground, the minister, in reading the service for the dead,
          declares that their bodies are committed to the dust "In the sure
          and certain hope of a glorious resurrection." I used to think
          when a boy, if such men went to heaven, I should not wish to be
          in their society; but if there were more apartments than one, I
          should like to select my company.
          It must be a very pleasing sort of way for people to do just as
          they please when living, and be considered very genteel and
          fashionable, and then when they die, instead of running the risk
          of being dammed, as they do among the Methodists, have a sure and
          certain hope of a glorious resurrection. I have studied the
          theories and views of many other Christian denominations,
          particularly Methodists, Baptists, Presbyterians, and various
          sects of what is called Protestantism, and a similar
          inconsistency runs through them. A man may be a robber, a
          murderer, a blasphemer, in fact, no matter how wicked he is, if
          they can only get him converted or born again immediately before
          he dies, it is all right; if they can get him to receive religion
          and believe in Jesus, even though he is about to be hung for some
          horrible crime--murder in the most aggravated form--he is
          prepared to enter into the kingdom of heaven to enjoy the society
          of God and angels; while another man, who may have been moral,
          upright, honorable, charitable, and humane, is consigned to
          everlasting burnings because he has not been converted or born
          again. Yet many of these people are sincere in their convictions,
          both among teachers and taught, among priests and people. I used
          to think, what becomes of the justice of God under such
          In relation to these matters we differ very materially from them,
          as well as in other things. We are what may emphatically be
          called a kingdom of priests. But with us, we do not get so much
          pay for so much work done in the discharge of the duties
          appertaining to the Priesthood, in the sense in which the
          religious world look for such remuneration. We have to preach, to
          attend to the duties of our callings, to administer in the
          ordinances of God, and to carry the Gospel to the nations of the
          earth, trusting in God, without salary or pecuniary reward. That
          is a thing the religious world do not think of, nor believe in
          doing. The idea of having faith in God about temporal things is a
          something they cannot understand; they cannot reconcile it with
          their philosophy; though they profess any amount of faith in the
          Lord in spiritual things. There is a very material difference
          between them and us about these matters.
          The same thing runs throughout almost every subject on which we
          reflect and exercise thought upon. Many people suppose, because
          we differ from them religiously, that we are opposed to them and
          that we are their enemies. We feel a good deal as Paul felt
          concerning the Israelites when he said, "My daily prayer is, that
          Israel may be saved." Yet Israel persecuted him because he did
          not believe as they believed in many things. We differ from
          others in political matters to a great extent. We have other
          ideas from what they have. We cannot help it. We reason upon
          certain things and reflect upon them, and use our judgment about
          them; and when we see things that are wrong, we consider they are
          wrong, and so state it, and believe that nothing can make a wrong
          into a right, nothing can turn an error into a truth; and hence
          there is quite a difference of feeling sometimes arises in
          relation to many of these things. We believe, for instance, in
          our religious matters, that God ought to govern us. We believe
          that when we are called upon to perform any labor or service of
          any kind, it is part of our religious faith that we must perform
          that, independent of any consequences whatever. No other people
          have got this religious feeling. Do you think you could
          transplant a number of the Church of England people into these
          valleys in the condition they were in when we came here? No, you
          could not. They would want to know where their living was to come
          from, and how they were to be sustained. You may go to the old
          Methodists, that are yet more zealous, and they would not do it.
          When the rush was made for the California gold mines here,
          shortly after they were discovered, a certain number of priests
          went with them to dig gold, and to take care of their souls, I
          suppose, at the same time. But then there was supposed to be gold
          to pay for it. And, as the Scriptures say, "As with the people,
          so with the priest," they all travelled in the one road.
          With us a few, it is true, have gone after gold--a few straggling
          ones here and there have wandered in search of it; but the
          generality of our Elders, while some few have gone in this
          direction, have been away travelling through the nations of the
          earth, trying to help forward the best interests and happiness of
          the human family, and inculcating those great principles which
          God has revealed from the heavens for the salvation of man;
          travelling, too, without purse or scrip. I remember, during the
          time of the gold fever, everybody wished to see me, where I was
          travelling, because they wanted to know something about the gold,
          and they thought I was acquainted with the neighborhood where it
          was obtained. They were surprised that our Elders should be
          leaving the prospects of such wealth, and going forth on a
          mission such as we are going on, so profitless and dishonourable
          in the estimation of men. But the Elders who did it were so
          infatuated, as some people would say, that they would go forward
          to the ends of the earth to preach what was viewed as
          imposture--a something that was considered to be opposed to
          everything good. It was to them astonishing that men would leave
          this gold that exerts so powerful an attraction upon the minds
          and bodies of men; their motives and acts were not comprehended.
          But our Elders did it, and hence we differed very materially from
          others in relation to these matters.
          We differ from them, also, with regard to our political views,
          for they are based on our religious faith; we believe in God, and
          therefore we fear him; we believe he has established his kingdom
          upon the earth, and therefore we cling to it; we believe that he
          is designing to turn, and overturn, and revolutionize the nations
          of the earth, and to establish a government that shall be under
          his rule, his dominion, and authority, and shall emphatically be
          called the government of God, or, in other words, the kingdom of
          God. There is nothing strange, however, in this; for a great many
          parties, both in the United States and in the governments of the
          old world, have believed in the kingdom of God being established
          in the last days; it has been a favorite doctrine, both among
          Socialists and Christians, and much has been said and written
          about it, theoretically. The difference between them and us is,
          they talk about something to come; we say that it has commenced,
          and that this is that kingdom.
          Well, but do you not hold allegiance to the government of the
          United States also? Do you not believe in the laws and
          institutions thereof? Yes, we have always sustained and upheld
          them; and although we have had many very heavy provocations to
          make us feel rebellious and opposed to that government, yet we
          have always sustained it under all circumstances and in every
          position. When they tried to cut our throats, we rather objected
          to that, you know. We had some slight objection to have our heads
          cut off and be trampled under foot; we did not think it was
          either constitutional or legal. But when they took their swords
          away from our necks and said that we might enjoy the rights of
          American citizens, that was all we wanted.
          There is, however, a kind of political heresy that we have always
          adopted. We have always maintained that we had a right to worship
          God as we thought proper under the constitution of the United
          States, and that we would vote as we pleased. But some people
          took a notion to say "they would be damned if we should." We told
          them, however, that was a matter of their own taste; that we
          would seek to be saved and yet we would do it. It has always been
          a principle with us, and in fact is given in one of our
          revelations, "that he who will observe the laws of God need not
          transgress the laws of the land." It has always been a principle
          inculcated by the authorities of this Church, and taught by our
          Elders, never to interfere with the political affairs of any
          nation where they might be--that is, as Elders. They go forth
          with the Gospel of peace, to preach to the people, and not to
          interfere with their political institutions. If a mission of that
          kind should be given at any future time, all well and good. I
          have always so represented our belief, and acted accordingly,
          wherever I have been, and so have my brethren in England, in
          France, in Germany, and in all nations where I have been. I have
          always adhered to the laws of the nation where I sojourned. In
          the United States we stand in a political capacity, in this
          Territory, as part and parcel of the United States. We occupy
          that position; we are obliged to do so; we cannot help ourselves
          if we wish it, but we do not wish it. We are a number of men
          here--a multitude of people, men, women, and children, occupying
          quite an extensive Territory, with settlements extending over a
          distance of 500 miles in length. What the amount of population is
          I am not prepared to say; but I am prepared to say that, as a
          population, as a people, as a Territory, we have always been
          loyal to the institutions of our government, and I am at the
          defiance of the world to prove anything to the contrary. When we
          left--I was going to say the United States--what did we leave
          for? Why did we leave that country? Was it because its
          institutions were not good? No. Was it because its constitutions
          was not one of the best that was ever framed? No. Was it because
          the laws of the United States, or of the States where we
          sojourned, were not good? No. Why was it? It was because there
          was not sufficient virtue found in the Executive to sustain their
          own laws. That was the reason, gentlemen. Is this anything to be
          proud of? It is a thing that should make every honorable American
          hide his head in shame; and all reflecting, intelligent, and
          honorable men feel thus.
          It is well understood that executive officers, whether State or
          Federal, are bound by the most solemn oath, to sustain the
          constitution and laws of the United States and of the States
          where they reside; and where those concerned aided in, or
          permitted, the expulsion of forty thousand American citizens from
          their homes, they stood perjured before their country and God;
          and this huge suicidal act of ostracism proclaimed them enemies
          of republican institutions and of humanity; traitors to their
          country, and recreant alike to its laws, constitution, and
          institutions. "But it was only the damned Mormons. It was only
          them, was it not?" Who were these "damned Mormons?" We cannot
          help thinking about these things just the same as we do about
          religious matters. Why, these "damned Mormons" were American
          citizens; and the constitution and laws of the United States, and
          of the several States, guaranteed, just as far as guarantee is
          worth anything, to these "damned Mormons" just the same rights
          and privileges that they did to the blessed Christians. But we
          came here. Now, what is the use of trying to hoodwink us and tell
          us that we have been very well treated? They know we cannot
          believe them, and that no rational, intelligent, honorable man
          would expect us to believe them; such assertions are an outrage
          at variance alike with common sense and our own experience. But
          did we rebel? No, we did not act as the Southern States have
          done. We came here; and, in the absence of any other government,
          we organized a provisional state government, just the same as
          Oregon did before us. Thus, in the midst of this abuse heaped
          upon us, we showed our adherence to the institutions and
          constitution of our country. If bad men bore rule, if corrupt men
          held sway--men who had neither the virtue nor the fortitude to
          maintain the right and protect the institutions and constitution
          of this, shall I say, our once glorious country,--if men could
          not be found who possessed sufficient integrity to maintain their
          oaths and their own institutions, there was a people here found
          of sufficient integrity to the constitution and institutions of
          the United States not to abandon them. That has been our feeling
          all the time, and it is based, also, upon that belief considered
          by a majority of the people of this and other nations as
          erroneous and false. Again when, after these things had
          transpired, we petitioned the United States to give us either a
          territorial or a state government, did that show anything
          inimical to the institutions of our Government? Verily, no; the
          very fact of our doing this proclaimed our loyalty and attachment
          to the institutions of the country. We got them, and had given
          unto us, a territorial government. We were recognized once more
          as citizens of the United States. We had sent among us Governors,
          appointed by the United States; Judges, a Secretary, Marshal, and
          all the adjuncts, powers, and officers with the territorial
          government. By them, in many instances, we have been belied,
          traduced, abused, outraged, and imposed upon. Have we retorted
          against the United States? No, we have not. Is it the duty of
          Federal officers, governors, judges, and other officers coming
          into our midst, secretaries, Indian agents, etc., to conspire
          against the people they come among? Is it their duty to traduce,
          abuse, vilify, and misrepresent them? In other places such men
          would be summarily dealt with. We have borne these things from
          time to time. They were not very much calculated to strengthen
          the attachment that we had so often and so strongly manifested to
          the government of which we form a part. Still, we have been true
          to our trust, to our integrity, and to the institutions and
          constitution of our country all the time in the midst of these
          Through some of these misrepresentations and a corrupt
          administration, a pretext was found to send an army out here. We
          heard the report sounding along from those plains that they were
          coming to destroy and lay waste. What, a government destroy its
          own offspring? An army raised against an infant Territory? The
          cannon and the sword, the rifle and the pistol, brought to spread
          death and desolation among a peaceful people. Is that
          republicanism? Are those the blessings of a paternal government?
          Is that the genius of those institutions that were framed to
          protect man in the enjoyment of all his rights, and to guarantee
          equal rights to all men? Would that country be an asylum for the
          oppressed? Would it be a place of refuge or protection to any
          one? What was left for us to do under those circumstances but to
          act as men and American citizens? To fall back on our reserved
          rights, and say to those political gamblers who would stake the
          lives of the citizens of a Territory in their damning games. Back
          with your hosts, touch not God's anointed, and do his prophets no
          harm. Was there anything wrong in that? No; I would do it ten
          thousand times over under the circumstances, under this
          government or any other on the face of the earth, with God to
          help me. No man, no government has the right, at the instigation
          of traitors, to destroy innocent men, women, and children. God
          never gave them such a right, the people never gave it to them,
          and they never had it. True, after a while, some
          peace-commissioners came along; why did they not come before and
          inquire into matters? Because of the lack of virtue and integrity
          among those who professed to rule the nation, and because of a
          desire to make political capital out of our destruction. Does
          that alter the institutions of our country o interfere with the
          Constitution of the country? Verily no. And our hearts beat as
          fervent in favor of those principles to-day as they ever did. But
          we feel indignant at the rascals who would try to betray those
          principles bequeathed to the nation. We cannot help it. We reason
          upon these principles the same as we do upon other things.
          But we frequently hear, "You are not loyal." Who is it that talks
          of loyalty? Those who are stabbing the country to its very
          vitals. Are they the men that are loyal? Those who are sowing the
          seeds of discord; those who are perjuring themselves before high
          Heaven and the country they profess to serve? Are these the loyal
          men? If so, God preserve me and this people from such loyalty
          from this time, henceforth, and for ever. We look at these things
          from another stand-point, and view them in a different light
          entirely from most others.
          We had a grand celebration yesterday. I was there, and much
          pleased to see the brethren turn out as they did. I was glad to
          hear the remarks of Judge Titus. They were very good; very
          patriotic. I wish the principles then advanced could always be
          carried out; that is the worst I wish. Sometimes people think we
          are acting almost hypocritically when we talk of loyalty to the
          constitution of the United States. We will stand by that
          constitution and uphold the flag of our country when everybody
          else forsakes it. We cannot shut our eyes to things transpiring
          around us. We have our reason, and God has revealed unto us many
          things; but never has he revealed anything in opposition to those
          institutions and that Constitution, no, never; and, another
          thing, he never will. 
          But did not Joseph Smith prophecy that there would be a rebellion
          in the United States? He did, and so have I scores and hundreds
          of times; and what of that? Could I help that? Could Joseph Smith
          help knowing that a rebellion would take place in the United
          States? Could he help knowing it would commence in South
          Carolina? You could not blame him for that. He was in his grave
          at the time it commenced; you killed him long ago; but you did
          not do away with the fact that this state of things should exist.
          If the Lord--we all talk about the Lord, you know, Christians as
          well as "Mormons," and about the providences of God, and the
          interposition of the Almighty--if the Lord has a design to
          accomplish, if there is a fate, if you like the word any
          better--and some infidels as well as Christians believe strongly
          in the doctrine of fate--if there is a fate in these things, who
          ordered it? Who can change its course? Who can stop it? Who can
          alter it? Joseph Smith did not instigate the rebellion in South
          Carolina, for he was not there. I heard yesterday from our former
          representative in Congress--Mr. Hooper--that when in Washington
          in that capacity, he was approached by two members of Congress
          from the South who said we had grievances to redress, and that
          then was the time to have them redressed, stating what great
          support it would give the Southern cause if Utah was to rise in
          rebellion against the government. He told them we had
          difficulties with the government, but we calculated they would be
          righted in the government or we would endure them. This has been
          uniformly our feelings. "What is your opinion of the war?" some
          would ask. If I had had the management of some of those things
          long ago, I would have hung up a number of Southern fire-eaters
          on one end of a rope and a lot of rabid Abolitionists on the
          other end, as enemies and traitors to their country. That is not
          very disloyal, is it?
          We look at things through a different medium than some do, and we
          feel perfectly calm, perfectly tranquil with regard to our status
          and what is to come religiously, politically, and every other
          way. One of our sisters showed me a letter the other day which
          she had received from a gentleman in New York; he was one of
          those psychologists who profess to be investigating mind and its
          operations. He asked her in his letter something like
          this:--"Have you got among you the vision of prophecy?" I do not
          know that I give the words exactly. She came to me to see what
          she should say in reply. Said I, "Tell the gentleman he does not
          know the question he is asking, and he would not understand the
          answer if he had it." The psychology and philosophy that is
          trying to examine the human mind through the medium of human
          intelligence, without the aid of the Spirit of God, can never
          find it out. It was written of old that "no man can know the
          things of God but by the Spirit of God;" and if they do not know
          it, you cannot teach it unto them, unless they get a portion of
          that Spirit.
          I am not surprised at men marvelling at our proceedings and
          wondering at the course we pursue, and in relation to our views.
          It cannot be expected that they can do anything else. Jesus said
          to Nicodemus, when he came to talk with Him concerning the things
          of the kingdom of God, "Except a man be born again, he cannot see
          the kingdom of God." And if he cannot see it, how can he
          comprehend it? How can a man comprehend a thing which he cannot
          see? So it is with the truth, because no man knows the things of
          God but by the Spirit of God. "Then you place yourselves on a
          more elevated platform than anybody else?" This we have the
          arrogance to do; but we have the honesty to acknowledge that it
          is from God we receive all, and not through ourselves; and that
          is why the world will not acknowledge nor believe in the
          philosophy of the heavens and the earth, of time and eternity;
          that all things are within the grasp of the intelligence of that
          mind that is lighted up by the light of the Spirit of God. But
          how vague and uncertain are the ideas of those who have not that
          Spirit! Look at the arguments, not only of the divines of the
          present day but of past ages, in regard to their religious views;
          look also at the difference of opinion of the best philosophers
          in regard to the science of life. There is nothing tangible,
          nothing real, nothing certain. Nothing but the Spirit of God can
          enlighten mens' minds. Standing on this platform, we view all
          things of a political and religious nature associated with the
          earth we are living on as being very uncertain, intangible, and
          unphilosophical. We expect to see the nations waste, crumble, and
          decay. We expect to see a universal chaos of religious and
          political sentiment, and an uncertainty much more serious than
          anything that exists at the present time. We look forward to the
          time, and try to help it on, when God will assert his own right
          with regard to the government of the earth; when, as in religious
          matters so in political matters, he will enlighten the minds of
          those that bear rule, he will teach the kings wisdom and instruct
          the senators by the Spirit of eternal truth; when to him "every
          knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus is the
          Christ." Then "shall the earth be full of knowledge like as the
          waters cover the sea." Then shall the mists of darkness be swept
          away by the light of eternal truth. Then will the intelligence of
          Heaven beam forth on the human mind, and by it they will
          comprehend everything that is great, and good, and glorious.
          In the meantime, it is for us to plod along in the course God has
          dictated, yielding obedience to his divine laws, and be
          co-workers with him in establishing righteousness on the earth;
          and with feelings of charity towards all mankind, let our motto
          always be, "Peace on earth and good will to men."
          May God help us to do so, in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / Heber
          C. Kimball, April 31, 1859
                          Heber C. Kimball, April 31, 1859
             Remarks made by President Heber C. Kimball, April 31, 1859.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          It is some time since I have occupied much time in this stand. I
          want you, brethren, sisters, and friends, and all that live, to
          understand that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,
          the kingdom of God, is the same to-day as it was thirty years
          I think it is twenty-seven or twenty-eight years since I came
          into this Church. My friends and relatives said it would come to
          naught probably in about a year. I told them it was a Church and
          kingdom which God had set up, and it never would come to naught;
          and I now say, it never will be overcome worlds without end. I
          know this just as well as I know I see you to-day. I knew it when
          I first became a member of this Church but not so well as I do
          to-day. All the nations upon this earth will crumble back to
          their mother earth, but this Church will stand for ever; so you
          may set your hearts at rest upon that point.
          Things are as we see them to prove our integrity towards God and
          his cause; for everything that can be shaken and overthrown will
          not stand, and that which cannot be shaken will remain. And those
          who stand will be like the gleaning of grapes after the vintage
          is done. So it will be with this people. It mattereth not what
          takes place, for it cannot affect the truth, but makes it shine
          brighter and brighter in the eyes of those who cleave to it, and
          bring forth the fruits of righteousness.
          Joseph Smith was a prophet of the Most High, and laid the
          foundation of this great Work, and established the holy
          Priesthood upon the earth, and God gave many revelations through
          him for our guidance. He said many a time while he was living, "I
          am laying the foundation, and you, Brother Brigham, and your
          brethren the Twelve Apostles, with those who are connected with
          you in the holy Priesthood, will rear a great and mighty fabric
          upon it; you will bear off the kingdom." And so it will be.
          Wicked men and wicked spirits may bring into requisition all the
          wisdom and cunning they possess to devise plans to overthrow this
          kingdom, but all their deep-laid plots will fail. They cannot do
          a thing to hinder the progress of this Work, but everything they
          do will promote it and bring it more and more into notice, from
          this time henceforth and for ever. I know it, and all hell cannot
          prevail against it; for Jesus says, "And upon this rock will I
          build my church, and the gates of hell cannot prevail against
          it." It is the same church that he established in his day which
          he has renewed unto us, with the same Priesthood and the same
          authority, and the Lord God will back up this kingdom and cause
          it to spread like a thrifty plant, and bring about his great
          purposes by the hands of those who cleave to it.
          You may think me too absolute in my language; but how can I be
          too positive in that which I know? Were I to say I know you are
          in this tabernacle, would any language be too absolute? Just as
          certainly do I know that this Work is true and cannot be
          overthrown by the world; although they may seek to kill, and
          destroy, and persecute the Saints of God to the death, they never
          will prevail against it.
          It would be well for every one of us to live the religion we
          profess and let our light so shine that others may see our good
          works and be led to honor the Lord, and do unto one another as we
          would wish others to do unto us and stick to the faith and
          principles of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. As the Apostle Paul
          says in his epistle to the Hebrews, "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 towards God, of the doctrine of
          baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection from the
          dead, and of eternal judgment." But let us go on unto perfection,
          keeping our covenants and vows we have made with each other, with
          our God, and with the holy angels, and then we shall be blessed
          all the day long.
          When a man backslides and loses the spirit of the Gospel, it is a
          hard case for that man to redeem himself and gain that communion
          with his God, with angels, and with the Holy Ghost, which he had
          in the beginning. Therefore, continue in the faith, progressing
          from grace to grace unto perfection. This is my exhortation and
          teaching unto you who profess the faith of Jesus Christ. Let us
          live our religion, repent and forsake all our sins, lie not,
          deceive not, steal not. 
          There is not a horse, ox, cow, sheep, or anything else that is
          stolen in this Territory, but what it is said the Mormons have
          done it. Though, doubtless, there are men who profess to be
          Latter-day Saints that are thieves. And as I said the other day
          to a person while talking on this matter, if a man will steal
          from a Gentile, he will steal from me, and vice versa. An honest
          man will be honest with all men.
          This is the religion I have believed and practised ever since I
          have been a member of this Church, and before I embraced any
          religious profession, I was taught this by my mother and
          teachers; for I came from a Christian country--from old
          Vermont-and they are all Christians there, of course. How can
          those of the New England States be otherwise who have held up so
          nobly for their Christianity? They are much extolled for their
          righteousness. I was there taught to be righteous, and I used to
          say, like many others there, it was pretty hard for a man to be a
          righteous man and get any property; for they, in that country,
          were a pack of knaves who would take the teeth out of your head
          if you did not keep your mouth shut. That was the kind of
          Christianity I was brought up amongst, and I came to these
          mountains to get among a people that worship the Lord God in
          spirit and in truth.
          Then armies, merchants, gamblers, the scum of the Eastern States
          followed upon our trail; but this is no excuse for me to do wrong
          and be unrighteous. If the strangers who are passing through to
          California wish to trade with me, I will deal as righteously with
          them as with my brethren. This kind of religion I have practised
          from my youth up. 
          As for the emigration this year that is passing through our
          country to California, let me tell you they are pretty fine
          fellows; they are as civil a set of men as I ever saw pass
          through these mountains; they mind their own business; they are
          not damning everybody and swearing they will kill the first
          Mormon they come across. Why is this? I expect all those kind of
          characters came with the army, and all the rest are civil men
          travelling west to find riches. May God bless them and help them
          to do right. There is not one of them but what will be blessed in
          doing unto others as they wish others to do unto them. 
          Would there be any trouble in this world if all would take that
          course? Would there be any war, mobs, confusion, desolation,
          poverty, and distress, as you now see it in the United States and
          in the old countries? One half of the population of the world is
          starving for the want of the actual necessaries of life, while
          the other is living in pomp, and splendor, and extravagance;
          still, we all come from the same Father and God. It is
          astonishing to see the wrangling and confusion of this world. I
          came here with my brethren to get rid of fighting and contention.
          I have been driven five times, and tamely submitted to be robbed
          of my home and possessions. I have but two articles now which I
          had when I was first married, except my wife; one is a tea
          canister of my own making, of brown earthenware, and the other is
          a chest made by President Brigham Young.
          God bless you, peace be with you, brethren and sisters, and with
          all the righteous, wherever they be, in this Church or out of it,
          it mattereth not to me; for I love a good and virtuous man, of
          whatever profession, who would do to me as he would wish me to do
          by him. Even so. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / George
          Q. Cannon, March 19, 1865
                          George Q. Cannon, March 19, 1865
                            CONDITION OF THE SAINTS, ETC.
            Remarks by Elder George Q. Cannon, made in the Tabernacle in
                        Great Salt Lake City, March 19, 1865.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          A number of excellent remarks have been made to-day in our
          hearing by the brethren who have spoken, to the truth of which,
          the Spirit of God accompanying them has borne record in our
          hearts. The Elders testify to the truth of the principles that we
          have embraced, and to speak upon them is as delightful a treat as
          we can have. There is nothing more delightful to the human mind,
          properly constituted, than to listen to the words of life and
          salvation spoken under the inspiration of the Holy Ghost; they
          are sweeter than the sweetest honey, and more satisfying than the
          best and most nutritious food; because they fill our spirits with
          joy and gladness, and we feel benefited, and refreshed, and
          strengthened by them, and then we occupy a closer relationship to
          our Father and God than before hearing his word. These are my
          feelings to-day, and they always have been whenever I have
          attended a meeting where the Spirit of God has prevailed. 
          A remark was made to-day which called up some reflections in my
          mind respecting us as a people. The speaker said that we were
          called illiterate and uneducated, and that we were despised
          because of our ignorance--because of the class of society from
          which the mass of us have been gathered. This, doubtless, is the
          feeling that is entertained in many parts respecting the
          Latter-day Saints. The remark brought into my mind a number of
          reflections respecting the position that Jesus occupied, that
          Jesus who is at the present time acknowledged, by all Christians
          at least, to be the greatest Being that ever trod the footstool
          of the Almighty. I thought of his lowly position, humble and
          obscure birth, and the surroundings he was brought up under; how
          he must have been despised by those who knew him when they heard
          the declarations which he made respecting his relationship to God
          our Father in heaven, and when they saw the men who had been
          appointed by him to proclaim the Gospel of salvation to the
          people, and also those associated with him. But now, as I have
          already stated, there is no doubt in the minds of those who
          profess to be Christians, that this same Jesus is the Son of God,
          the Creator of the world; that by him and through him all things
          were and are created, and that unto him we owe the salvation we
          have all received, and which we will eventually receive when we
          attain to the fulness of the glory promised unto us. It is not
          always they who are called from the humblest classes who are the
          most illiterate in the true sense of the word; at least, it is
          not the case with us as a people, nor with any people who have
          ever been called to the knowledge of the Gospel, o upon whom he
          has bestowed the power to administer the laws of salvation.
          I reflect with great pleasure upon the prospects before us, and
          upon the past history of our people, and the wisdom God has given
          unto his servants, and to this people, to establish his truth,
          and to proclaim it unto the inhabitants of the earth, to
          accomplish his purposes in building up the kingdom he has so long
          promised he would establish in the latter times no more to be
          thrown down. When we see how God made choice of his servant
          Joseph, and brought him from obscurity and from the midst of
          ignorance, and bestowed upon him the wisdom of eternity, how he
          trained him in that knowledge which is necessary, both temporal
          and spiritual, to enable him to organize this great people--I
          call us a great people, not because of our numbers, but because
          of our prospects, our power, and our organization--He gave him
          wisdom necessary to organize His kingdom upon permanent
          principles, that it might grow like a seed planted in good
          ground--small in the beginning, but germinating and growing until
          it becomes a great and mighty tree. It was by means of the wisdom
          God gave unto Joseph Smith that he was enabled to organize the
          kingdom of God upon the earth out of the contending, conflicting
          elements in Babylon, upon principles that will cause it to
          increase until it shall spread over the whole earth. He not only
          gave this wisdom to his prophet Joseph, but he has also given it
          to his prophet Brigham, whom he has endowed with power and wisdom
          to take hold of His work where Joseph left it when he passed
          beyond the vail, and carrying it forward until, in the eyes of
          all observing and thinking men, it is the greatest wonder of the
          present age.
          It is a wonder that when all nations of the earth are full of
          contention, strife, and disunion, when they are warring in deadly
          strife one against another, when they have not the power to
          cement themselves together, that there has been one man in the
          midst of the nations who has had such controlling influence that
          people have been gathered together from every nation, creed, and
          church, speaking a great variety of languages--men and women
          trained under different influences, circumstances, and habits. It
          is a wonder to see them collected as this people are to-day, to
          see them united and dwelling in peace, to see them governed by
          the slightest whisper of him God has appointed to preside, to see
          every obstruction moved from the path of the onward progress of
          the kingdom of God; not only this, but to see this wisdom
          developing itself though all the ramifications of that kingdom,
          to see it filling the breasts of those occupying the various
          offices in the Church--to see Bishops, Bishops' Counsellors,
          Presidents and Presidents' Counsellors, Apostles, High Priests,
          Seventies, Elders, Priests, Teachers, and Deacons filling the
          various offices assigned unto them to perform; though the same
          knowledge fills them to a less extent, still that spirit and that
          power are increasing in them which give promise unto them that
          the organization with which they are connected will become great,
          and mighty, and overwhelming in the midst of the earth. 
          We are called uneducated, illiterate, but there is a wisdom which
          is being developed in the midst of this people, and they are
          being trained in those principles that will make them great and
          mighty before God and man. We can see this now, but, with the eye
          of faith, we can see much more in the future, when the nations
          will seek for that wisdom which is alone in the possession of
          this people--a wisdom that will save them from the calamities and
          the evils that are coming upon them. It is not far distant. It
          will not be very long before men will seek to be taught of this
          people the principles that pertain to this and the next world.
          Though they now pretend to despise them, that knowledge is,
          nevertheless, in the midst of this people alone. They understand
          the principles that will save men--not only men individually, but
          as nations and communities, from the evils with which they are
          threatened here and hereafter. They have been obtained by us in
          the same manner in which they were obtained by Jesus Christ, by
          Peter, and by those associated with him; they have been obtained
          by the knowledge, and light, and intelligence of heaven, bestowed
          on men in answer to prayer and faith properly exercised. There is
          something very delightful and consoling in the reflection that
          men and women, no matter how ignorant, if they become acquainted
          with the principles of the Gospel, will become wise unto
          salvation, and be elevated and be developed, and continue to
          increase in everything that is great and desirable before God and
          man. We see this promise, which the Gospel holds out to us, being
          We talk about the glory which is in store for us, and well we may
          talk about it, because we have, to a certain extent, had a
          foretaste on the earth of those promises, the fulness of which we
          shall enjoy in that world to which we are all hastening. We can
          see the effects of the Gospel upon the minds of the people, and
          upon our own minds; we see the people being morally developed in
          everything that will make them mighty before God. I know that the
          Lord, for a wise purpose, has called the noblest spirits that he
          had around him to come forth in this dispensation. He called them
          to come in humble circumstances, that they might receive the
          experience necessary to try and prove them in all things, that
          they might descend below all things, and gradually begin to
          ascend above all things; there was a wise design in this, and we
          see it carried out at the present time.
          I take great delight in these things; it is a great pleasure to
          reflect upon this Work; for, view it which way you will, look at
          it from any standpoint, there is something attractive and lovely
          connected with it. We can all have this enjoyment, there is no
          defect or flaw in the system; there is nothing about it, if we
          had the power, that we could improve or make better. That is a
          great consolation to us; it is not the work of man, a
          cunningly-devised fable man has constructed. It is not made to
          suit our peculiar tastes and views, but it is eternal; it has
          always existed, and it accords with our being, and with the laws
          of our being, because the plan of salvation emanated from the
          same eternal source that we emanated from, and everything
          connected with us and this system is in perfect harmony. There is
          nothing conflicting between the perfect laws of our nature and
          the laws of God, revealed in the Gospel. It is this that makes it
          so beautiful, that causes it to have such an elevating effect
          upon us; and we have to live in agreement with it, in order to
          eventually be exalted in the presence of our Father and God;
          which, may God grant, may be our happy lot, in the name of Jesus
          Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 /
          Brigham Young, May 15, 1865
                             Brigham Young, May 15, 1865
          Remarks by President Brigham Young, delivered in the Tabernacle, 
                Great Salt Lake City, Sunday afternoon, May 15, 1865.
                              Reported by E. L. Sloan.
          I will say to you, and wish you to inform your neighbors, that on
          the morrow I expect to start with some of my brethren on a short
          trip north. I do this lest some might suppose that we are going
          to leave you. If we would live according to our acknowledgments
          in the holy Gospel, according to the faith we have embraced, and
          according to the teachings we receive from time to time, we never
          would be in the dark with regard to any matters we should
          Much is taught the Saints by the Elders of Israel concerning
          their religion, the way we should live, how we should deal with
          each other, how we should live before God, what our feelings
          should be and the spirit we should possess. If we live according
          to our covenants, we will always enjoy the light of truth; and if
          we live faithful enough, we shall enjoy the blessings of the Holy
          Ghost to be our constant companion. In such case no person would
          turn either to the right hand or to the left, in consequence of
          the motives, the sayings, or the doings of this one or that one;
          but they would march straightforward in the path that leads to
          eternal life; and if others stepped out of the way, they would
          walk straight along. Without the power of the Holy Ghost, a
          person is liable to go to the right or the left from the straight
          path of duty; they are liable to do things they are sorry for;
          they are liable to make mistakes; and when they try to do their
          best, behold they do that which they dislike. 
          I mention my intended trip, because I do not want to hear, when I
          return that Brother Brigham, or Brother Heber, or somebody else,
          "has slipped away"--that "there is something the
          matter"--"something that is not right"--somebody saying "there is
          an evil of some kind, and we want to know it;" "why don't you
          come right out with it?" "If you do not come back so-and-so, we
          will leave."
          It was said here to-day, that very few have embraced the truth,
          considering the great number of the inhabitants of the earth. It
          can hardly be discovered where those few are. It is astonishing
          to relate facts as they are. The Elders go forth and preach the
          Gospel to the nations; they baptize the people,--hunt them up
          from place to place; yet, if you take the names of those who have
          been baptized, have the one-fourth ever been gathered? No. Is not
          this strange? Do they keep the faith and stay in the midst of the
          wicked? No, they do not. The kingdom of God is living and full of
          spirit; it is on the move; it is not like what we call
          sectarianism--religion to-day and the world to-morrow; next
          Sabbath a little more religion, and then the world again; "and as
          we were, so we are; and as we are, so we shall be, ever more,
          amen." It is not so with our religion. Ours is a religion of
          improvement; it is not contracted and confined, but is calculated
          to expand the minds of the children of men and lead them up into
          that state of intelligence that will be an honor to their being.
          Look at the people who are here--the few that have gathered--and
          then look back at the branches you came from. How many have
          gathered? Where are the rest of those who composed those
          branches? It is true that occasionally one will remain and keep
          the faith for many years; but circumstances are such in the
          world, that they eventually fall away from it, if they remain
          It was truly said here to-day, that the spirit we have embraced
          is one, and that we will flow together as surely as drops of
          water flow together. One drop will unite with another drop,
          others will unite with them, until, drop added to drop, they form
          a pond, a sea, or a mighty ocean. So with those who receive the
          Gospel. There never was a person who embraced the Gospel but
          desired to gather with the Saints, yet not one-fourth ever have
          gathered; and we expect that a good many of those who have
          gathered will go the downward road that leads to destruction. It
          seems hardly possible to believe that people, after receiving the
          truth and the love of it, will turn away from it, but they do.
          Now, brethren and sisters, proclaim that Brothers Heber and
          Brigham, and some others, will be gone for a few days; though I
          do not promise to preach to you when I come back. I do not intend
          to preach while I am away, but I expect to attend meeting when I
          return; so that you can see that I am with you in readiness to
          meet the requirements of my calling. This should satisfy you
          about my being absent for a few days.
          I expect to be absent, some time from now, for quite a while. I
          do not say I will be absent, but I expect to be. I expect to take
          the back track from here. When we came back from the south, I
          told the brethren this. When we shall go is not for me to say. If
          the people neglect their duty turn away from the holy
          commandments which God has given us, seek their own individual
          wealth, and neglect the interests of the kingdom of God, we may
          expect to be here quite a time--perhaps a period that will be far
          longer than we anticipate. Perhaps some do not understand these
          remarks. You are like me, and I am like you. I cannot see that
          which is out of sight; you cannot see that which is out of sight.
          If you bring objects within the range of vision--within the power
          of sight--you can see them. These sayings may be somewhat
          mysterious to some.
          Some may ask why we did not tarry at the centre stake of Zion
          when the Lord planted our feet there? We had eyes, but we did not
          see; we had ears, but we did not hear; we had hearts that were
          devoid of what the Lord required of his people; consequently, we
          could not abide what the Lord revealed unto us. We had to go from
          there to gain an experience. Can you understand this? I think
          there are some here who can. If we could have received the words
          of life and lived according to them, when we were first gathered
          to the centre stake of Zion, we never would have been removed
          from that place. But we did not abide the law the Lord gave to
          us. We are here to get an experience, and we cannot increase in
          that any faster than our capacities will admit. Our capacities
          are limited though sometimes we could receive more than we do,
          but we will not. Preach the riches of eternal life to a
          congregation, and when the eyes and affections of that
          congregation are like the fool's eyes, to the ends of the earth,
          it is like throwing pearls before swine. If I can actually reach
          your understandings, you will know just what I know, and see just
          what I see, in regard to what I may say. 
          Take the history of this Church from the commencement, and we
          have proven that we cannot receive all the Lord has for us. We
          have proven to the heavens and to one another that we are not yet
          capacitated to receive all the Lord has for us, and that we have
          not yet a disposition to receive all he has for us. Can you
          understand that there is a time you can receive and there is a
          time you cannot receive, a time when there is no place in the
          heart to receive? The heart of man will be closed up, the will
          will be set against this and that that we have opportunity to
          receive. There is an abundance the Lord has for the people, if
          they would receive it.
          I will now lead your minds directly to our own situation here,
          leaving the first organization of the people, their gathering,
          etc., and come to our being now here. Some have been here six
          months some one year, some two, some five, some six, some ten,
          and some seventeen years this summer. Now, I will take the
          liberty of bringing up some circumstances and sayings to connect
          with the ideas I wish to present in regard to our wills,
          dispositions, opportunities, etc.
          It was said here to-day, by Brother William Carmichael, that he
          had proved a great many of the sayings and prophecies of Joseph
          to be true, and also the prophecies of Heber and others. Now you,
          my brethren and sisters, who have been in the habit of coming
          here for the last ten, twelve, or fifteen years, have you not
          been told all the time, at least as often as once a month, that
          the time would come when you would see the necessity o taking
          counsel and laying up grain? It has been said that Brother
          Brigham has prophecied there would be a famine here. I would like
          to have any one show me the man or woman who heard Brother
          Brigham make that statement. I did not make that statement; but I
          have said you would see the time when you would need grain--that
          you would need bread. You have seen that time. Brother Heber said
          the same thing. But you never heard me saying the Lord would
          withdraw his blessings from this land while we live here, unless
          we forfeit our rights to the Priesthood; then we might expect
          that the earth would not bring forth.
          We have had a cricket war, a grasshopper war, and a dry season,
          and now we have a time of need. Many of the inhabitants of this
          very city, I presume, have not breadstuffs enough to last them
          two days; and I would not be surprised if there are not
          seven-eighths of the inhabitants who have not breadstuffs
          sufficient to last them two weeks. Has the Lord stayed the
          heavens? No. Has he withdrawn his hand? No. He is full of mercy
          and compassion. He has provided for the Saints. No matter what
          scarcity there is at present, He gave them bread. If they go
          without bread, they cannot say the Lord has withheld his hand,
          for he has been abundantly rich in bestowing the good things of
          the earth upon this people. Then why are we destitute of the
          staff of life? Comparing ourselves with our substance, we might
          say we have sold ourselves for naught. We have peddled off the
          grain which God has given us so freely, until we have made
          ourselves destitute. Has this been told us before? Yes, year
          after year.
          How will it be? Listen, all who are in this house, is this the
          last season we are going to have a scarcity? I will say I hope it
          is, but I cannot say that it is, if the people are not wise. Some
          sow their wheat, and after the Lord has given one hundred-fold of
          an increase, they sell that at one-fourth of its value, and leave
          themselves wanting. The last time I spoke upon this subject I
          tried to stir up the minds of the people regarding it; I want
          them to reflect upon it.
          At our Semi-Annual Conference last fall, the Bishops were
          instructed to go to each house and see what breadstuffs were on
          hand. Why? "Because the time is coming when they will want
          breadstuffs." It comes to my ears every day that this one and
          that one is in want. "Such a one has had no bread for three
          What was told you last harvest? "Sister, you had better get a
          chest, or a little box, for there is plenty of wheat to be
          had--it is not worth a dollar a bushel--and you had better fill
          your box with it." "Oh, there is plenty of it; there is no
          necessity for my emptying the paper rags out of my box, or my
          clothes out of the large chest where I have them packed away; my
          husband can go and get what he wants at the tithing store." They
          would not get the wheat and the flour that was then easy to be
          obtained, and now they are destitute. Why could they not believe
          what they were told? They ought to have believed, for it was
          true; and in all these matters, the truth has been timely told to
          the people. And here let me say to you, that instead of our
          having plenty here, with nobody to come to buy our substance--to
          purchase our surplus grain--the demand for what we can raise here
          will increase year by year.
          Are we going to live our religion--to be the servants and
          handmaids of the Almighty? Are we going to continue in the faith,
          and try to grow in grace and in the knowledge of the truth? If we
          are, the prophecies will be fulfilled on us. We shall have the
          privilege of seeing the blest, and will be blest. 
          I look at things as a man looking philosophically; I look at
          things before us in the future as a politician, as a statesman,
          as a thinking person. What is going to be the condition of this
          people and their surrounding neighbors? Do we not see the storm
          gathering? It will come from the north-east and the south-east,
          from the east and from the west, and from the north-west. The
          clouds are gathering; the distant thunders can be heard; the
          grumblings and mutterings in the distance are audible, and tell
          of destruction, want, and famine. But mark it well, if we live
          according to the holy Priesthood bestowed upon us, while God
          bears rule in the midst of these mountains, I promise you, in the
          name of Israel's God, that he will give us seed-time and harvest.
          We must forfeit our right to the Priesthood before the blessings
          of the Heavens cease to come upon us. Let us live our religion
          and hearken to the counsel given to us.
          And here let me say to you, buy what flour you need, and do not
          let it be hauled away. Have you a horse, or an ox, or a wagon, or
          anything else, if it takes the coat off your back, or the shoes
          off your feet, and you have to wear moccasins? sell them and go
          to the merchants who have it to sell, and buy the flour before it
          is hauled away. Why did you not buy it when it was cheap? There
          is a saying that wit dearly bought is remembered. Now buy your
          wit, buy your wisdom, buy your counsel and judgment, buy them
          dearly, so that you will remember. You were last fall counselled
          to supply yourselves with breadstuffs, when flour could have been
          bought for whistling a tune, and the seller would have whistled
          one-half of it to induce you to buy. Why have the children of
          this world been wiser in this day than the children of light?
          Have not there been Saints enough before us for us to learn by
          their experience, and revelations enough given for the Saints now
          not to be in the background? It is mortifying that the children
          of this world should know more about these things than the
          children of light. We know more about the kingdom of God. Take
          these young men, sixteen or eighteen years old, or these old men,
          or some who have just come into the Church, and let them go into
          the world, and, with regard to the kingdom of God, they can teach
          kings and queens, statesmen and philosophers, for they are
          ignorant of these things; but in things pertaining to this life,
          the lack of knowledge manifested by us as a people is
          disgraceful. Your knowledge should be as much more than that of
          the children of this world with regard to the things of the world
          as it is with regard to the things of the kingdom of God.
          Take your money or your property, brethren and sisters, and buy
          flour; or shall I hear, to-morrow morning, "I am out of bread"?
          Why not go down street and sell your bonnets and your shawls,
          sisters, and not wait? "Why, some good brother will feed us." But
          that good brother has not got the flour. "I am not going to buy
          any; I will trust in the Lord; He will send the ravens to feed
          me." Perhaps the faith of some people is such that they think the
          Lord will send down an angel with a loaf of bread under one arm
          and a leg of bacon under the other--that an angel will be sent
          from some other world with bread ready buttered for them to eat;
          or that it will be as was said of the pigs in Ohio, when it was
          first settled; it was said the soil was so rich that if you hung
          up one pound of the earth two pounds of fat would run out of it,
          and that pigs were running through the woods ready roasted, with
          knives and forks in their backs. My faith is not like that.
          A bother told me, when speaking of the rotation of the planets,
          that he could never believe that the earth did rotate. Said I,
          "do you believe that the sun which shone to-day shone yesterday?"
          "Yes." He had not faith to believe that the earth turns round,
          but he believed that the sun moved round the earth. Now, said I,
          take your measuring instruments. If the earth rotates upon its
          axis each given point upon it moves 24,000 miles in twenty-four
          hours; while, if the sun goes round the earth, it must travel
          over a circle, in the same time, of which 95,000,000 is about the
          semi-diameter. He had not faith to believe that the earth could
          turn on its axis in twenty-four hours, but I showed him that he
          had to have millions and millions more faith than I had, when he
          believed the sun went round the earth.
          My faith does not lead me to think the Lord will provide us with
          roast pigs, bread already buttered, etc. He will give us the
          ability to raise the grain, to obtain the fruits of the earth, to
          make habitations to procure a few boards to make a box, and when
          harvest comes, giving us the grain, it is for us to preserve
          it--to save the wheat until we have one, two, five, or seven
          years' provisions on hand--until there is enough of the staff of
          life saved by the people to bread themselves and those who will
          come here seeking for safety.
          Will you do this? "Aye, maybe I will," says one, and "maybe I
          wont" says another; "the kingdom that cannot support me I don't
          think of much account; the Lord has said it is his business to
          provide for his Saints, and I guess he will do it." I have no
          doubt but what he will provide for his Saints; but if you do not
          take this counsel and be industrious and prudent, you will not
          long continue to be one of his Saints. Then, continue to do
          right, that we may be His Saints; sow, plant, buy half a bushel
          of wheat here, and a bushel there, and store it up till you get
          your five or seven years' provisions on hand.
          The war now raging in our nation is in the providence of God, and
          was told us years and years ago by the Prophet Joseph; and what
          we are now coming to was foreseen by him, and no power can
          hinder. Can the inhabitants of our once beautiful, delightful,
          and happy country avert the horrors and evils that are now upon
          them? Only by turning from their wickedness and calling upon the
          Lord. If they will turn unto the Lord and seek after him, they
          will avert this terrible calamity, otherwise it cannot be
          averted. There is no power on the earth, nor under it, but the
          power of God, that can avert the evils that are now upon, and are
          coming upon, the nation.
          What is the prospect? What does the statesman declare to us? What
          does he point us to? Peace and prosperity? brotherly-kindness and
          love? union and happiness? No! no! calamity upon calamity; misery
          upon misery.
          Do you see any necessity, Latter-day Saints, for providing for
          the thousands coming here? Suppose some of your brothers, uncles,
          children, grand-children, or your old neighbors, fleeing here
          from the bloodshed and misery in the world, were to come to you.
          "Well, I am glad to see you; come to my house; come, uncle; come,
          grandson; come, aunt; I must take you home." But what have you to
          give them? Not a morsel! "The country was full of food; I could
          have obtained it for sewing, for knitting, for almost every kind
          of work; I could have procured it a year ago, but it grated on my
          feelings to have it offered to me for my work. I am sorry to say
          I have nothing in the house, but I think I can borrow," when you
          ought to have your bins full, to feed your friends when they come
          It is not our open enemies who will come here. I told the people
          last year that the flood and tide of emigration were conservative
          people, who wished in peace to raise the necessaries of life, to
          trade, etc.--peaceful citizens. What do they come here for? To
          live in peace. Were they those who robbed us in Missouri and
          Illinois? No.
          The time is coming when your friends are going to write to you
          about coming here, for this is the only place where there will be
          peace. There will be war, famine, pestilence, and misery through
          the nations of the earth, and there will be no safety in any
          place but Zion, as has been foretold by the Prophets of the Lord,
          both anciently and in our day.
          This is the place of peace and safety. We would see how it would
          be if the wicked had power here, but they have not the power, and
          they never will have, if we live as the Lord requires us to.
          (Amen, by the congregation.)
          Buy flour, you who can; and you, sisters, and children too, when
          harvest comes, glean the wheat fields. I would as soon see my
          wives and children gleaning wheat as anybody's. And then, when
          the people come here by thousands, you will be able to feed them.
          What will be your feelings when the women and children begin to
          cry in your ears with not a man to protect them? You can believe
          it or not, but the time is coming when a good man will be more
          precious than fine gold.
          It is distressing to see the condition our nation is in, but I
          cannot help it. Who can? The people en masse, by turning to God
          and ceasing to do wickedly, ceasing to persecute the honest and
          the truth-lover. If they had done that thirty years ago, it would
          have been better for them to-day. When we appealed to the
          government of our nation for justice, the answer was, "Your cause
          is just, but we have no power." Did not Joseph Smith tell them in
          Washington and Philadelphia, that the time would come when their
          State rights would be trampled upon?
          Joseph said, many and many a time, to us, "Never be anxious for
          the Lord to pour out his judgments upon the nation; many of you
          will see the distress and evils poured out upon this nation till
          you will weep like children." Many of us have felt to do so
          already, and it seems to be coming upon us more and more; it
          seems as though the fangs of destruction were piercing the very
          vitals of the nation. 
          We inquire of our friends who come here, the emigration, how it
          is back where they came from. They say, you can ride all day in
          some places but recently inhabited and not see any inhabitants,
          any plowing, any sowing, any planting; you may ride through large
          districts of country and see one vast desolation. A gentleman
          said here, the other day, that 100 families were burned alive in
          their own houses, in the county of Jackson, Missouri; whether
          this is true is not for me to say but the thought of it is
          painful. Have you, Latter-day Saints, ever experienced anything
          like that? No! You were driven out of your houses, I forget the
          number, but you were not burned in them. I have said to the
          Saints, and would proclaim it to the latest of Adam's generation,
          that the wicked suffer more than the righteous.
          Why do people apostatize? You know we are on the "Old Ship Zion."
          We are in the midst of the ocean. A storm comes on, and, as
          sailors say, she labors very hard. "I am not going to stay here,"
          says one; "I don't believe this is the Ship Zion." "But we are in
          the midst of the ocean." "I don't care, I am not going to stay
          here." Off goes the coat, and he jumps overboard. Will he not be
          drowned? Yes. So with those who leave this Church. It is the old
          Ship Zion, let us stay in it. Is there any wisdom in all doing as
          we are all told? Yes.
          While Brother Woodruff was talking about the notable text given
          by Brother Hardy to a gentleman in England, when speaking of the
          Mormon creed, I thought I could incorporate a very large
          discourse in the application of that creed. "To mind your own
          business" incorporates the whole duty of man. What is the duty of
          a Latter-day Saint? To do all the good he can upon the earth,
          living in the discharge of every duty obligatory upon him. If you
          see anybody angry, tell them never to be angry again. If you see
          anybody chewing tobacco, ask them to stop it and spend the money
          for something to eat. Will you stop drinking whisky? Let me plead
          with you to do so. And if the sisters would not think it
          oppressive, I would ask them to not drink quite so much strong
          tea. And if I make an application of these remarks in my own
          person, it is my business to point out these things and to ask
          you to refrain from them. It is the business of a Latter-day
          Saint, in passing through the street, if he sees a fence pole
          down, to put it up; if he sees an animal in the mud, to stop and
          help to get it out. I make such acts my business. When I am
          travelling, I stop my whole train and say, "Boys, let us drive
          those cattle out of that grain and put up the fence." If I can do
          any good in administering among the people, in trying to have
          them comprehend what is right and do it, that is my business, and
          it is also your business. Let us preach righteousness, and
          practise it. I do not wish to preach what I do not practise. If I
          wish to preach to others wholesome doctrine, let me practise it
          myself--show that example to others I wish them to imitate. If we
          do this, we will be preserved in the truth. We wish to increase;
          we do not wish to become aliens to the kingdom of God.
          When people's eyes are opened and they see and understand how
          heinous it is to turn away from the truth, were they to reflect,
          and ask, "Shall I ever leave the faith? ever turn away from the
          kingdom of God?" it would make them shudder; there would be a
          chill over them from their heads to their feet; they would feel
          to say, "No, God forbid!"
          It was said here this morning that no person ever apostatized
          without actual transgression. Omission of duty leads to apostacy.
          We want to live so as to have the Spirit every day, every hour of
          the day, every minute of the day; and every Latter-day Saint is
          entitled to the Spirit of God, to the power of the Holy Ghost, to
          lead him in his individual duties. Is no one else entitled to it?
          No. But this wants explanation.
          Here, perhaps, is a good Presbyterian brother, a good Baptist
          brother, or, perhaps, a good Catholic one. Are they entitled to
          that degree of the Spirit of God that we are? No; but they are
          entitled to light. And there is one saying I heard here to-day
          that I will repeat;--Whenever any one lifts his voice or hand to
          persecute this people, there is a chill passes through him,
          unless he is lost to truth and the Spirit of God has entirely
          left him. He feels it day and night; he feels the Spirit working
          with him. And the Spirit of the Lord will strive, and strive, and
          strive with the people, till they have sinned away the day of
          grace. Until then, all are entitled to the light of Christ, for
          he is the light that lighteth every man who cometh into the
          world. But they are not entitled to receive the Holy Ghost. Why
          not, as well as Cornelius? That bestowal of the Holy Ghost was to
          convince the superstitious Jews that the Lord designed to send
          the Gospel to the Gentiles. Peter said, well, now, brethren, can
          you forbid water to baptize these, seeing the Lord has been so
          merciful to them as to give them the Holy Ghost? And he baptized
          them; and that was the opening of the door of the Gospel to the
          I pray the Lord for you; I pray for you to get wisdom--worldly
          wisdom; not to love the things of the world, but to take care of
          what you raise. Try to raise a little silk here; you know we are
          raising cotton. Try to raise some flax, and take care of it. Try
          and make a little sugar here next fall; I understand that article
          is now fifty cents a pound in New York. As was is wasting the
          productive strength of the nation, do you not think it becomes us
          to raise sugar, corn, wheat, sheep, etc., for the consumption of
          the old, the blind, the lame, and the helpless who will be left,
          that we may be able to feed and clothe them when they come here?
          We will feed and care for them, for there are thousands of them
          who are good people, who have lived according to the best light
          and truth they knew. And by-and-by the prejudices that exist
          against us will be wiped away, so that the honest can embrace the
          I do not want "Mormonism" to become popular; I would not, if I
          could, make it as popular as the Roman Catholic Church is in
          Italy, or as the Church of England is in England, because the
          wicked and ungodly would crowd into it in their sins. There are
          enough such characters in it now. There are quite a number here
          who will apostatize. It needs this and that to occur to make some
          leave. If "Mormonism" were to become popular, it would be much as
          it was in the days of the early Christians, when no one could get
          a good position unless he was baptized for the remission of sins;
          he could not get an office without he was baptized into the
          Suppose this Church were so popular that a man could not be
          elected President of the United States unless he was a Latter-day
          Saint, we would be overrun by the wicked. I would rather pass
          through all the misery and sorrow, the troubles and trials of the
          Saints, than to have the religion of Christ become popular with
          the world. It would in such case go as the ancient church went. I
          care not what the world thinks, nor what it says, so they leave
          us unmolested in the exercise of our inherent rights. Take a
          straightforward course, and meet the jeers and frowns of the
          Unpopular. "Oh! dear, how they are despised and hated, those
          'Mormons!'" Did not Jesus say that his disciples should be hated
          and despised? Said he, "They hate me, and they will hate you
          also." Has it ever been otherwise? He said, emphatically, "In the
          world ye shall have persecution, but in me ye shall have peace."
          What is proved by people's leaving us, before the heavens, before
          the angels, and all the prophets and holy men who ever lived upon
          the earth? You will see every man and woman, when they once
          consent to leave here. I don't care what name they are known by,
          whether Morrisites, Gladden Bishopites, Josephites, or any other
          ite, they make friends with the wicked--with those who blaspheme
          the holy name we have been commemorating here this afternoon, and
          they are full of malice and evil. Whenever any person wants to
          leave here, the thread is broken that bound him to the truth, and
          he seeks the society of the wicked; and it proves to every one
          who has the light of truth within him, that this is the kingdom
          of God, and that those who leave are of Anti-Christ.
          Be steadfast, always abiding in the truth. Never encourage malice
          or hatred in your hearts; that does not belong to a Saint. I can
          say in truth, that with all the abuse I have ever met, driven
          from my home, robbed of my substance, I do not know that a spirit
          of malice has ever rested in my heart. I have asked the Lord to
          mete out justice to those who have oppressed us, and the Lord
          will take his own time and way for doing this. It is in his
          hands, and not in mine, and I am glad of it, for I could not deal
          with the wicked as they should be dealt with.
          My name is had for good and evil upon the whole earth, as
          promised to me. Thirty years ago Brother Joseph, in a lecture to
          the Twelve, said to me, "Your name shall be known for good and
          evil throughout the world;" and it is so. The good love me, weak
          and humble as I am, and the wicked hate me; but there is no
          individual on the earth but what I would lead to salvation, if he
          would let me; I would take him by the hand, like a child, and
          lead him like a father in the way that would bring him to
          Would we not rather live as we are living than to become one with
          the spirit of the world? Yes. Do not be anxious to have this
          people become rich and possess the affection of the world. I have
          been fearful lest we come to fellowship the world. Whatever you
          have, it is the Lord's. You own nothing, I own nothing. I seem to
          have a great abundance around me, but I own nothing. The Lord has
          placed what I have in my hands, to see what I will do with it,
          and I am perfectly willing for him to dispose of it otherwise
          whenever he pleases. I have neither wife no child, no wives nor
          children; they are only committed to me, to see how I will treat
          them. If I am faithful, the time will come when they will be
          given to me. 
          The Lord has placed it in our power to obtain the greatest gift
          he can bestow--the gift of eternal life; He has bestowed upon us
          gifts to be developed and used throughout all eternity--the gifts
          of seeing, of hearing, of speech, etc.--and we are endowed with
          every gift and qualification, though in weakness, that are the
          angels'; and the germ of the attributes that are developed in Him
          who controls, is in us to develop. We can see each other, hear
          each other, converse with each other, and, if we keep the faith,
          all things will be ours. The Saints do not own anything now. The
          world do not own anything. They are hunting for gold--it is the
          Lord's. If my safe had millions of gold in it, it would be the
          Lord's, to be used as he dictates. The time will come when those
          who are now dissatisfied will not be satisfied with anything; but
          the Saints who live their religion are and will be satisfied with
          everything. They know the Lord controls, and that he will control
          and save the righteous.
          May the Lord help us to be righteous and to live our religion,
          that we may live for ever. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 /
          Brigham Young, June and July, 1865
                         Brigham Young, June and July, 1865
                               SUMMARY OF INSTRUCTIONS
           Given by President Brigham Young to the people, on his visit to
                 Juab, and Sanpete Counties, in June and July, 1865.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          The Latter-day Saints in these mountains are growing in grace and
          in favor with God and his servants, and we feel to bless them as
          parents, as children, as school teachers, as musicians, as
          singers, as Elders in Israel, and as Saints, in all their
          employments and honest pursuits. As soon as the people spread out
          from Great Salt Lake City to form a new settlement, we have
          visited them to instruct and encourage them; in this we feel
          satisfied that we have done our duty. We are still travelling
          from settlement to settlement, and have great joy in visiting and
          talking to the Saints, and in blessing them. When I leave home to
          visit the Saints, I leave all in the hands of God, and would not
          swerve from the fulfilment of my duties as a preacher of
          righteousness, and as the leader of this great people, if it
          should save my property from being burnt to ashes. This has been
          my course from the beginning.
          It gives us great joy to see the public manifestations of welcome
          which the people give everywhere. The little children who take
          part in these demonstrations, dressed in their best, receive
          impressions they can never forget; time cannot wear them out;
          they are impressions of respect and honor to the leaders of
          Israel. It is a duty we owe to our children to educate and train
          them in every principle of honor and good manners, in a knowledge
          of God and his ways, and in popular school education. I am happy
          to hear the little children sing, and hope they are also learning
          to read and write, and are progressing in every useful branch of
          I feel happy; I feel at peace with all the inhabitants of the
          earth; I love my friends, and as for my enemies, I pray for them
          daily; and, if they do not believe I would do them good, let them
          call at my house, when they are hungry, and I will feed them;
          yea, I will do good to those who despitefully use and persecute
          me. I pray for them, and bless my friends all the time.
          We are now located in the midst of these mountains, and are here
          because we were obliged to go somewhere. We were under the
          necessity of leaving our homes, and had to go somewhere. Before
          we left Nauvoo, three Members of Congress told us that if we
          would leave the United States, we should never be troubled by
          them again. We did leave the United States, and now Congressmen
          say, if you will renounce polygamy you shall be admitted unto the
          Union as an independent State and live with us. We shall live any
          way, and increase, and spread, and prosper, and we shall know the
          most and be the best-looking people there is on the earth. As for
          polygamy, or any other doctrine the Lord has revealed, it is not
          for me to change, alter, or renounce it; my business is to obey
          when the Lord commands, and this is the duty of all mankind.
          The past of this people proves that we are better able to take
          care of ourselves than any other people now living. This fact
          stares the world in the face. When we first came to these
          mountains, as pioneers to develop their resources, we were poor,
          and had been scattered and peeled by our enemies, yet our trust
          was in God. We are now not only able to feed ourselves, but to
          feed thousands who travel through our settlements, and give them
          protection from the savage foe who otherwise would have infested
          this region and made it dangerous to travel. We must watch and
          pray, and look well to our walk and conversation, and live near
          to our God, that the love of this world may not choke the
          precious seed of truth, and feel ready, if necessary, to offer up
          all things, even life itself, for the kingdom of heaven's sake.
          We must not love the world, nor the things of the world, until
          the world is sanctified and prepared to be presented to the
          Father with the Saints upon it; then they will inhabit if for
          ever and ever.
          We are living in a country where we are subject to be endangered
          by aggressions from a savage foe, and I would advise the people
          to dwell together in cities, and not in a scattered condition.
          When men and women cannot live together in a community, close
          enough for self-defence, it denotes a lack of fellowship and
          friendship, a lack of those brotherly and neighborly feelings
          which should exist in the bosoms of all true Saints. When I see
          men and women inclined to withdraw from the community, and
          children from their parents, I know that there is a spirit of
          alienation in them which they should not possess. There are
          persons who say they believe in Joseph the Prophet, in the Book
          of Mormon, in the gathering of the house of Israel, in the
          building up of Zion, and in all the blessings promised to the
          Church and kingdom of God upon the earth; but they do not like to
          be quite so nigh their neighbors; they want to be off on one
          side, from under the influence of city regulations, and from
          under the eye of their Bishop. When I see this feeling
          manifested, I fear those persons have never felt that brotherly
          felling that belongs to the spirit of our religion; if they ever
          did have it, they certainly do not possess it when they entertain
          such desires. I would like to see a disposition manifested to
          live close to the meeting-house, or to the school-house, where
          the Saints can attend the public worship of God and can send
          their children to school, where they can live so that their
          children can associate together and form lasting friendships,
          that may serve them for good in a day to come, and where they can
          pass the dreary winter months in associations with people who are
          informed, and are capable of educating them in singing, in
          mathematics, spelling, and other branches of education; and when
          they want to recreate, that they can mingle together in the dance
          without having to go long distances through the snow and the
          cold; and that in the case of sickness or accident of any kind,
          they may be within the reach of sympathetic hearts and the hand
          of kindness and benevolence, being ever ready to receive kindness
          or to give it to their neighbors. Those who possess these desires
          manifest plainly the spirit of the Gospel.
          This people are improving; they are improving in the cultivation
          of the soil, in the study of horticulture, both theoretically and
          practically, and in all matters that are calculated to multiply
          around them every substantial comfort of life. Yet we are
          imperfect, we are weak, and we cannot see afar off, though I
          think we can see as through a glass darkly, and comprehend the
          outlines of many things; if we cannot see all the details, we can
          see the future of this people and the destiny of the nations. We
          should love the earth--we should love the works which God has
          made. This is correct; but we should love them in the Lord, as I
          think the majority of this people do; for what people would have
          done as this people have, were it not for the kingdom of heaven's
          sake? They have forsaken their homes, and friends, and country to
          come up to these mountains to serve God and build up his kingdom
          on the earth.
          We are doing well, notwithstanding all our failings and
          weaknesses; but the Lord would like to have us a little more
          diligent; he would like us to cleave a little more closely to the
          things of his kingdom, have more of his Spirit, and know more of
          him and of one another, that complete and perfect confidence may
          be restored. The confidence which would exist among all people is
          gone, and the wise men of the world are aware of this fact, but
          they are at a loss to know how to recover it. The Latter-day
          Saints alone know how to do this; they know how to sustain
          themselves and restore the confidence which has been lost. We are
          actually restoring this confidence. The people abroad who have
          confidence in our Elders, and in their testimony, are baptized in
          water according to the ancient pattern, and are born of the
          water, and are also born of the Spirit, and receive a testimony
          from the heavens for themselves. This is the only way in which
          confidence can be restored among men.
          All men ought to understand that confidence is one of the most
          precious jewels that they can possibly possess on the earth, and
          when we have the confidence of a good man or woman, we never
          should allow ourselves to do an act that would in the least
          degree impair it. It is an absolute truth that the confidence of
          this people in the men God has placed to lead them is daily
          increasing, and the confidence of the heavens is increasing in us
          in the same ratio as our confidence increases in one another. It
          will not do to lie to and deceive one another; neither will it do
          to cease to chasten and reprove the people when it is necessary
          to do so. There is no people on the earth that can bear to be
          spoken to in the language of reproof, and have their faults laid
          open before them, as this people can. All who are in possession
          of the Holy Spirit of truth receive such reproofs as kindnesses,
          and are thankful. In this way we go on from truth to truth, and
          from light to light.
          It is interesting to follow this people from the beginning of
          their existence--through all their drivings and persecutions up
          to the present time. It will be seen that they have steadily
          increased in numbers, in righteousness, and in power and
          influence up to this day. Note the increase of love, of joy and
          of peace; our peace flows like a river: it is glorious.
          Hallelujah; praise the God of heaven, for He has spoken from the
          heavens and has called us to truth and virtue, and wishes to put
          into our possession the wisdom of eternity; this to us is a
          matter of great joy. If we will do right and seek the Lord with
          all our hearts, he will give unto us everything our hearts can
          desire. The earth is before us, heaven is before us, and the
          fullness of eternity is before us, and it is for us to live for
          all our hearts can desire in righteousness.
          We have enemies; they are with us all the time, prompting the
          Saints to do wrong, that their minds may be darkened, and they be
          plunged into sorrow and grief. Are we ready to receive an enemy?
          We should be as ready to meet and enemy in one capacity as in
          another. Every time the enemy throws us off our guard, and we
          give way to temptation, he gains so much; he weakens us and
          strengthens himself; when we resist temptation, it strengthens
          the Saints and weakens the enemy. We should be ready for all
          emergencies at all times, in all places, and under all
          circumstances, meeting the enemy at the door, and not waiting
          until he takes possession of the house. We should at all times be
          well qualified by faith, by the power of the Holy Spirit of the
          Gospel which we possess, and be well fortified on every
          side,--this we should do spiritually; this we should do
          temporally. If the enemy finds that we are prepared, he will be
          very apt to keep out of doors.
          The earth is before us, and all the blessings of the earth. There
          is not a man who is called now to receive the blessings which
          pertain to the spiritual world, and the things of eternity, but
          what is first called to learn how to sustain his natural life
          here in this world. This life is worth as much as any life that
          any being can possess in time or in eternity. There is no life
          more precious to us in the eye of eternal wisdom and justice than
          the life which we now possess. Our first duty is to take care of
          this life; and in this duty we are, as a people, tolerably
          I do not think that another community can be found anywhere more
          capable of taking care of themselves than are the Latter-day
          Saints. It is true that we do not raise our own tobacco: we might
          raise it if we would. We do not raise our tea; but we might raise
          it if we would, for tea-raising, this is as good as country as
          China; and the coffee bean can be raised a short distance south
          of us. Our ladies wear imported silk, when in reality this is one
          of the finest silk countries in the world. The mulberry tree
          which produces the natural food of the silk worm, flourish on all
          our bench lands, and our climate is adapted to the healthy
          condition of the silk worm. I would recommend the planting and
          propagating of the mulberry tree as shade trees, and as
          ornamental trees; they also yield a great abundance of excellent
          fruit. Let our cities and gardens be adorned with trees that are
          both ornamental and useful. Our young ladies can be amused and
          profitably employed in feeding that useful insect, in winding and
          spinning their silk into sewing silk, and into yarn, which can be
          converted into silks and satins of the finest texture and
          quality; for we have in our community artisans who can do this
          work as well as it can be done in any country in the world. We
          can sustain ourselves; and as for such so-called luxuries as tea,
          coffee, tobacco and whiskey, we can produce them or do without
          them. When we produce our food and clothing in the country where
          we live, then are we so far independent of the speculating,
          money-making world outside, whereas, if we were to dig gold, and
          make this our business, then should we become slaves to the
          producers of food and clothing, and make fortunes for speculators
          and freighters; and instead of working to build up Zion and its
          interests, we should be labouring to build up gentile
          institutions and gentile interests. When this people are prepared
          to properly use the riches of this world for the building up of
          the kingdom of God, He is ready and willing to bestow them upon
          us. If the Latter-day Saints will walk up to their privileges,
          and exercise faith in the name of Jesus Christ, and live in the
          enjoyment of the fullness of the Holy Ghost constantly day by
          day, there is nothing on the face of the earth that they could
          ask for, that would not be given to them. The Lord is waiting to
          be very gracious unto this people, and to pour out upon them
          riches, honor, glory, and power, even that they may possess all
          things according to the promises He has made through His apostles
          and prophets.
          I refer to this, having my eye particularly on the chastisement I
          gave the merchants last fall and spring Conferences. I said then,
          what I will say anywhere, for it is as true as the sun shines.
          Are our merchants honest? I could not be honest and do as they
          do; they make five hundred percent on some of their goods, and
          that, too, from an innocent, confiding, poor, industrious people.
          What do this people, who have been gathered from the
          manufacturing and rural districts of foreign countries, know
          about speculation? Nothing. Where they lived they worked by the
          day or by the week for so much, and then would buy so much bread
          and so much meat, &c., with their wages. Here, when they have a
          dollar instead of a farthing, they do not know what to do with
          it; but the merchants are ready to say give it to us for a piece
          of rag. If they do not repent they will go to hell. They have
          made fortunes out of the poor Saints. What do you thing about
          them? I know how God looks at them, and I know how I look at
          them. They have got to devote the riches they have gathered from
          this poor people to the building up of the kingdom of God, or
          they and their riches will perish together. I mean this to apply
          to our merchants that are here, and to those who are scattered
          through the Territory. I am speaking of our Mormon merchants.
          When a gentile merchant comes here he gives us to understand that
          he is here to make all the money he can out of the Mormons; we
          know how to take him; but when men come and say they are
          Latter-day Saints, brethren, Mormons, the people trust them as
          friends and are deceived and suffer through their avarice.
          I like to see men get rich by their industry, prudence,
          management and economy, and then devote it to the building up of
          the kingdom of God upon the earth, and in gathering in the poor
          saints from the four corners of the earth; and I am pleased to
          say that our rich brethren are doing well. I have no fault to
          find with our brethren who are merchants, in regard to their deal
          with me as an individual; they are kind to me. I believe they
          would give me half they are worth, if I were to ask them for it. 
          The Lord will bestow riches and honor upon this people as fast as
          they can receive them and learn to take care of them in the Lord.
          We all have faults; fault could be found with our mechanics and
          with our common labourers, as well as with our merchants. Yet,
          notwithstanding all our faults, where is there as good a
          community of people upon the earth, or as good looking a one, or
          as wise and knowing a one as the Latter-day Saints in this
          Territory? Let us continue to improve until we are filled with
          the knowledge of the truth. We have yet much to learn. It is
          necessary that the people be taught how to live with each other,
          and enjoy each other's society in peace, and in the light of the
          Holy Spirit of the gospel which we have embraced, that every
          minute of our lives may be a scene of peace. We should learn to
          live with our neighbours without contention, learning to do good
          to each other.
          To build up the kingdom of God is our business; we have nothing
          else on hand. When will we see and understand the general
          principle of building up the kingdom of God on the earth? When
          shall we see the interest of the whole of God's people sought by
          each person instead of an individual interest? The question in
          our minds ought to be, what will advance the general interests of
          our settlements and increase intelligence in the minds of the
          people. To do this should be our constant study in preference to
          how shall we secure that farm or that garden, or to saying, I
          want that house, and I do delight in that horse, and this
          carriage, &c., so much so that we cannot worship our God in
          public meeting or kneel down to pray in our families without the
          images of earthly possessions rising up in our minds to distract
          them and make our worship and our prayers unprofitable. Until a
          selfish, individual interest is banished from our minds, and we
          become interested in the general welfare, we shall never be able
          to magnify our Holy Priesthood as we should.
          On to-morrow (June 27) it will be twenty-one years since Joseph
          Smith was killed, and from that time to this the Twelve have
          dictated, guided and directed the destinies of those great
          people. Can you not discern clearly that this kingdom grows? In a
          few years more those who composed the Church in the days of
          Joseph Smith will be found only one here and one there. It will
          soon be hard to find one who knew the Prophet Joseph. The kingdom
          has made rapid strides in advance, and prospered amazingly in the
          last twenty-one years. We have travelled abroad into the
          world--into the wide field--and have scattered the seed of truth
          broad-cast, and gathered from the crude masses our brethren, our
          sisters, their children, and all those who have received the
          truth, and cemented them together by the power of the Holy
          Priesthood, into a great people. In this the hand of God is
          visible to all, in acknowledging the labors of His servants, and
          this people as His people. I can witness one fact, and so can
          others, that by paying attention to the building up of the
          kingdom of God alone we have got rich in the things of this
          world; and if any man can tell how we can get rich in any other
          way, he can do more than I can. We leave our business and our
          families and go out to preach the peaceable things of the
          kingdom, and pay attention to that, never thinking of our
          business or our families, except when we ask the Lord to bless
          our families in common with all the families of the Saints
          In my first administrations in the gospel, in the rise of this
          church when I went out to preach, I would leave my family and
          friends in the hands of the Lord, and I gave them no further
          thought, but my mind looked forward and my thoughts were, I am
          going among strangers, how can I present myself to that
          congregation to which I am going to speak this afternoon, this
          evening, or to-morrow morning; how can I draw their attention to
          the principles of the Holy Gospel, and engage their feelings to
          that degree that they will inquire about the truth and embrace
          it. I did not think about wife, children, home, native land or
          friends; but my thoughts were on the great work before me. This
          should be the state of our feelings continually. The prosperity
          of the kingdom is before us; we see it as we see one another in
          this congregation; we see the spread of the people and their
          increase. Thousands of children are born yearly in Utah; we have
          an immense immigration among us in this way; and still we are
          sending Elders abroad to gather in the honest in heart from
          foreign lands. Sixty Elders have gone out this spring, men of
          experience, character, ability and good standing in society--men
          who can be depended upon.
          The increase of our children, and their growing up to maturity,
          increases our responsibilities. More land must be brought into
          cultivation to supply their wants. This will press the necessity
          of digging canals to guide the waters of our large streams over
          the immense tracts of bench and bottom lands which now lie waste.
          We want our children to remain near us, where there is an
          abundance of land and water, and not go hundreds of miles away to
          seek homes. In these great public improvements the people should
          enter with heart and soul, and freely invest in them their
          surplus property and means, and thus prepare to locate the vast
          multitudes of our children which are growing up, and strengthen
          our hands, and solidify still more--make still more compact our
          present organized spiritual and national institutions. The river
          Jordan will be brought out and made to flow through a substantial
          canal to Great Salt Lake City. When this is done, it will not
          only serve as a means of irrigating, but it will form a means of
          transportation from the south end of Utah Lake to Great Salt Lake
          City. Thus we will keep labouring, and preaching, and gathering
          the people, and the Lord will keep blessing and sustaining us,
          until the land is full of Saints, and they begin to spread out,
          to hive forth, seeking for room to dwell, until the earth shall
          be full of the glory of the Lord and His Saints. 
          We are greatly blessed as a people. We have had peace here for
          many years. To-day we are able to meet together to speak to each
          other, to strengthen and do each other good; and by forsaking our
          fields for a season, to gather together to worship our God, I can
          assure you that our crops will be better than they would be if we
          were to spend all our time in our fields. We may water and plant
          and toil, but we should never forget that it is God who gives the
          increase; and by meeting together, our health and spirits will be
          better, we will look better, and the things of this world will
          increase around us more, and we will know better how to enjoy
          At Mount Pleasant, in San Pete county, and Elder wished to give
          out a notice for the brethren to water their wheat immediately,
          for it was suffering. I requested him to allow me to give out the
          notice for him, which he did; and I gave out the appointment,
          informing the saints that if they would place guards sufficient
          to keep their homes from Indian depredations, fires, &c., and the
          rest of the men, women, and children attend our meetings, I would
          promise them, in the name of Israel's God, better crops than if
          they did otherwise. This was on Wednesday, and in the night there
          came a beautiful shower, and we continued to have showers, until
          at Manti, on Sunday, we were under the necessity of suspending
          our meeting in the Bowery, and repairing to the meeting-house;
          the earth was thoroughly soaked, and vegetation was refreshed,
          and the people were satisfied. I notice this incident merely to
          show that if we will do our duty, and be faithful to our God, He
          will never be backward in dispensing His mercies liberally to us.
          We should spend a portion of our time and means in training our
          children, and a most effective way is to do it by example. If we
          wish our children to be faithful to us, let us be faithful to God
          and to one another. If we wish them to be obedient to us, let us
          be obedient to our superiors. Parents should manifest before
          their children all that they wish to see exhibited in them.
          Whatever a husband requires of a wife, or of a child, in
          obedience, in meekness, in submission, manifest before them all
          that you require of them. Example is better than precept. When we
          present precepts they should correspond with our own example.
          I say to fathers, mothers, and to the whole Priesthood of the Son
          of God, if we expect to sanctify ourselves and the earth upon
          which we tread, we must begin that work in our own hearts; let
          them be pure and holy, and devoted entirely to the service of
          God, then will the earth become sanctified and holy under our
          feet; we shall begin to spread abroad and enlarge our borders
          with greater power when we can conquer ourselves and be able to
          exercise a good influence over our friends and neighbors. We do
          many wrongs which we would not do if we knew better, and so it is
          with our children. You may remember it and lay it to heart, and
          if you wish, write it in your journals, that some of the best
          spirits that have ever been sent to earth are coming at the
          present time, comparatively speaking.
          Solomon said, "He that spareth his rod hateth his son," but
          instead of using the road, I will teach my children by example
          and by precept. I will teach them every opportunity I have to
          cherish faith, to exercise patience, to be full of long-suffering
          and kindness. It is not by the whip or the rod that we can make
          obedient children; but it is by faith and by prayer, and by
          setting a good example before them. This is my belief. I expect
          to obtain the same as Abraham obtained by faith and prayer, also
          the same as Isaac and Jacob obtained; but there are few who live
          for the blessings of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob after they are
          sealed upon them. No blessing that is sealed upon us will do us
          any good, unless we live for it. Whereas, if we are faithful,
          there is nothing which is calculated to please the eye, to
          gladden the heart, to cheer and comfort the body and spirit of
          man, everything in the heavens, with the fullness of the earth,
          its pleasures and enjoyments, with perfect health, without pain,
          with appetites made pure, all this, and more that has not yet
          entered into the heart of man to conceive, the Lord has in store
          for His children. This earth, when it shall be made pure and
          holy, and sanctified and glorified and brought back into the
          presence of the Father and the Son, from whence it came at the
          time of the fall, will become celestial, and be the glorified
          habitation of the faithful of this portion of the great family of
          our Heavenly Father.
          Abraham was faithful to the true God, he overthrew the idols of
          his father and obtained the Priesthood after the order of
          Melchizedek, which is after the order of the Son of God, and a
          promise that of the increase of his seed there should be no end;
          when you obtain the Holy Priesthood, which is after the order of
          Melchizedek, sealed upon you, and the promise that your seed
          shall be numerous as the stars in the firmament, or as the sands
          upon the sea shore, and of your increase there shall be no end,
          you have then got the promise of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and
          all the blessings that were conferred upon them. 
          How many of the youth of our land are entitled to all the
          blessings of the kingdom of Heaven, without first receiving the
          law of adoption? When a man and woman have received their
          endowments and sealings, and then had children born to them
          afterwards, those children are legal heirs to the kingdom and to
          all its blessings and promises, and they are the only ones that
          are on this earth. There is not a young man in our community who
          would not be willing to travel from here to England to be married
          right, if he understood things as they are; there is not a young
          woman in our community, who loves the gospel and wishes its
          blessings, that would be married in any other way; they would
          live unmarried until they could be married as they should be, if
          they lived until they were as old as Sarah before she had Isaac
          born to her. Many of our brethren have married off their children
          without taking this into consideration, and thinking it a matter
          of little of importance. I wish we all understand this in the
          light in which heaven understands it.
          Those whom I once knew as little boys are growing out of my
          recollection; these young men know nothing but Mormonism. They
          are in some instances called wild and ungovernable; but these
          wild boys, properly guided and directed, will make the greatest
          men who have ever lived upon this earth; and I want them to throw
          aside their diffidence and come up and shake hands with me, and
          say, "How do you, brother Brigham," for I feel warmly towards
          them. I say to our young men, be faithful, for you do not know
          what is before you, and abstain from bad company and bad habits.
          Let me say to the boys sixteen years old and even younger, make
          up your minds to mark out the path of rectitude for yourselves,
          and when evil is presented, let it pass by unnoticed by you, and
          preserve yourselves in truth, in righteousness, virtue and
          holiness before the Lord. You were born in the kingdom of God; it
          is to be built up; the earth has to be renovated, and the people
          sanctified, after they are gathered from the nations, and it
          requires considerable skill and ability to do this; let our young
          men prepare themselves to aid and do their part in this great
          work. I want you to remember this teaching with regard to our
          We are hated and despised as a people, and every one who hates
          this people, hates the God of heaven; and when men lift their
          hands against the Latter-day Saints, they lift them against the
          Almighty. We are the men and women who will renovate the earth,
          redeem it, and restore all things through the strength of Him who
          has paid the debt for us, and who has been and is still willing
          to help us, and give unto us every blessing we need. Our religion
          is worth everything to us, and for it we should be willing to
          employ our time, our talent, our means, our energies, our lives.
          Let the Latter-day Saints be separate from the ungodly, and learn
          to live within themselves; and let us cease to give to them the
          proceeds of our hard toil for that which does not profit us. Any
          man in this church and kingdom who will cater to a gentile for a
          little money will be poor in time and in all eternity. To those
          who plead poverty, and contend that they must take wicked and
          corrupt men into their houses to board them, etc., for a living,
          I promise poverty, unless they repent, and turn from the error of
          their ways. So long as we will fellowship unholy and wicked
          persons, so long God and angels and holy men will not fellowship
          May God bless you as parents, as children, as Elders in Israel,
          as musicians, and as sweet singers; may He bless your houses, you
          barns, your fields, your flocks, and your herds, your cities and
          the ranges around them, the mountains, the timber and the waters,
          and greatly comfort you, and enable you to pursue the journey of
          life so as to land safely in the haven of eternal rest. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 /
          Brigham Young, June 18, 1865
                            Brigham Young, June 18, 1865
            Remarks by President Brigham Young, delivered in the Bowery,
                           Salt Lake City, June 18, 1865.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          I wish the strict attention of the congregation, which is so
          large and widely spread under this low bowery that I fear it will
          be with difficulty that I can make myself heard by all. To
          persons who wish to understand and improve upon what they hear,
          it must be very annoying to only hear the sound of the speaker's
          voice and not be able to comprehend its signification.
          The gospel of life and salvation has again been committed to the
          children of men, and we are made the happy partakers of its
          blessings, and my sincere desire is that all may improve upon the
          words of life which have been revealed from the heavens in our
          day. It is written, "And this is life eternal, that they might
          know Thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom Thou hast
          sent." All nations, tribes and communities of men worship
          something, it may be a stump, a stock, a tree, a stone, a figure
          moulded in brass, iron, silver, or gold, or some living creature,
          or the sun, the moon, the stars, or the god of the wind and other
          elements, and while worshiping gods which they can see and
          handle, there dwells within them a crude and undefined impression
          of a great Supreme and universal Ruler whom they seek to
          represent and worship in gods made with their own hands; but
          where he is located, what his shape and dimensions and what his
          qualifications are they know not. The Apostle Paul found the city
          of the Athenians wholly given to idolatry; and they called him a
          "babbler," because he preached unto them Jesus and the
          resurrection. He disputed in the synagogue with the Jews and with
          the devout persons, and in the market daily with them who met
          with him; and standing, in the midst of Mars-hill, he said, "Ye
          men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too
          superstitious. For as I passed by and beheld your devotions, I
          found an altar with this inscription, 'To the Unknown God.' Whom,
          therefore, ye ignorantly worship, Him declare I unto you."
          The Athenians knew not what to worship, and it seems they were
          willing to worship a god unknown to them, very likely under the
          impression that he might be the true God, whom they had tried to
          represent no doubt in various ways.
          Wherever the human family dwell upon the face of the earth,
          whether they are savage or civilised, there is a desire implanted
          within them to worship a great, Supreme Ruler, and not knowing
          Him, they suppose that through offering worship and sacrifice to
          their idols they can conciliate his anger which they think they
          see manifested in the thunder, in the lightning, in the storm, in
          the floods, in the reverses of war, in the hand of death, etc.,
          etc.; thus they try to woo his protection and his blessing for
          victory over their enemies, and at the termination of this life
          for a place in the heaven their imaginations have created, or
          tradition has handed down to them. I have much charity for this
          portion of the human family called heathens or idolators; they
          have made images to represent to their eyes a power which they
          cannot see, and desire to worship a Supreme Being through the
          figure which they have made.
          There is a Power that has organised all things from the crude
          matter that floats in the immensity of space. He has given form,
          motion and life to this material world; has made the great and
          small lights that bespangle the firmament above; has allotted to
          them their times and their seasons, and has marked out their
          spheres. He has caused the air and the waters to teem with life,
          and covered the hills and plains with creeping things, and has
          made man to be a ruler over His creations. All these wonders are
          the works of the Almighty ruler of the universe, in whom we
          believe and whom we worship. "The earth rolls upon her wings, and
          the sun giveth his light by day, and the moon giveth her light by
          night, and the stars also giveth their light, as they roll upon
          their wings in their glory, in the midst of the power of God.
          "Behold all these are kingdoms, and any man who hath seen any or
          the least of these, hath seen God moving in his majesty and
          All people are conscious of the existence of a Supreme Being:
          they see Him or His power in the sun, in the moon and in the
          stars, in the storm, in the thunder and in the lightning, in the
          mighty cataract, in the bursting volcano, or in the powerful and
          disgusting reptile, etc. He is also described by some as having
          no form, attributes, or power, or in other words, "without body,
          parts or passions," and, consequently, without power or
          principle; and there are persons who suppose that He consists
          entirely of attributes universally diffused. Not knowing God they
          worship His works that manifest His power and His majesty, or His
          attributes which manifest His goodness, justice, mercy and truth.
          According to all that the world has ever learned by the
          researches of philosophers and wise men, according to all the
          truths now revealed by science, philosophy and religion,
          qualities and attributes depend entirely upon their connection
          with organised matter for their development and visible
          Mr. Abner Kneeland, who was a citizen of Boston, and who was put
          into prison for his belief, in an essay which he wrote, made this
          broad assertion: "Instead of believing there is no God, I believe
          that all is God."
          We believe in a Deity who is incorporated--who is a Being of
          tabernacle, through which the great attributes of His nature are
          made manifest. It is supposed by a certain celebrated philosopher
          that the most minute particles of matter which float in space, in
          the waters, or that exist in the solid earth, particles which
          defy the most powerful glasses to reveal them to the vision of
          finite man, possess a portion of divinity, a portion of infinite
          power, knowledge, goodness and truth, and that these qualities
          are God, and should be worshipped wherever found. I am an infidel
          to this doctrine. I know the God in whom I believe, and am
          willing to acknowledge Him before all men. We have persons in
          this church who have preached and published doctrines on the
          subject of the Deity which are not true. Elder Orson Pratt has
          written extensively on the doctrines of this church, and upon
          this particular doctrine. When he writes and speaks upon subjects
          with which he is acquainted and understands, he is a very sound
          reasoner; but when he has written upon matters of which he knows
          nothing--his own philosophy, which I call vain philosophy--he is
          wild, uncertain, and contradictory. In all my public
          administration as a minister of truth, I have never yet been
          under the necessity of preaching, believing or practising
          doctrines that are not fully and clearly set forth in the Old and
          New Testaments, Book of Doctrine and Covenants, and Book of
          The Book of Mormon, which we firmly believe to be the word of God
          to nations that flourished upon this continent many centuries
          ago, corroborates the testimonies of the writers of the Old and
          New Testaments, and proves these books to be true. They were
          given to us in weakness, darkness and ignorance; I will, however,
          give the translators of King James's version of the Bible the
          credit of performing their labor according to the best of their
          ability, and I believe they understood the languages in which the
          Scriptures were originally found as well as any men who now live.
          I have in my life-time met with persons who would persist in
          giving different renderings, and make quotations from the dead
          languages to show their scholarship, and to confuse and darken
          still more the minds of the people. To all such I have always
          felt like saying, there is the Bible, if you are capable of
          giving us a more correct translation of it than we have, it is
          your duty to do so. The Old and New Testaments have always
          answered my purpose as books of reference. Many precious parts
          have no doubt been taken from them; but the translation which we
          have, has been translated according to the best knowledge the
          translators possessed of the languages in which the ancient
          manuscripts were written, yet as uninspired men they were not
          qualified to write the things of God.
          I believe in one God to us; as it is written, "For though there
          be that are called gods, whether in heaven or in earth (as there
          be gods many, and lords many); but to us there is but one God,
          the Father, of whom are all things, and we in Him; and one Lord
          Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by Him," and, "They
          were called Gods unto whom the word of God came." I believe in a
          God who has power to exalt and glorify all who believe in Him,
          and are faithful in serving Him to the end of their lives, for
          this makes them Gods, even the sons of God, and in this sense
          also there are Gods many, but to us there is but one God, and one
          Lord Jesus Christ--one Saviour who came in the meridian of time
          to redeem the earth and the children of men from the original sin
          that was committed by our first parents, and bring to pass the
          restoration of all things through His death and sufferings, open
          wide to all believers the gates of life and salvation and
          exaltation to the presence of the Father and the Son to dwell
          with them for ever more. Numerous are the scriptures which I
          might bring to bear upon the subject of the personality of God. I
          shall not take time to quote them on this occasion, but will
          content myself by quoting two passages in the 1st chapter of
          Genesis, 26th and 27th verses. 'And God said, let us make man in
          our image, after our likeness; and let them have dominion over
          the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the
          cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing
          that creepeth upon the earth. So God created man in his own
          image, in the image of God crated he him; male and female created
          he them."
          I believe that the declaration made in these two scriptures is
          literally true. God has made His children like Himself to stand
          erect, and has endowed them with intelligence and power and
          dominion over all His works, and given them the same attributes
          which He himself possesses. He created man, as we create our
          children; for there is no other process of creation in heaven, on
          the earth, in the earth, or under the earth, or in all the
          eternities, that is, that were, or that ever will be. As the
          Apostle Paul has expressed it, "For in Him we live, and move, and
          have our being." "Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God,
          we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or
          silver, or stone, graven by art or man's device." There exist
          fixed laws and regulations by which the elements are fashioned to
          fulfill their destiny in all the varied kingdoms and orders of
          creation, and this process of creation is from everlasting to
          everlasting. Jesus Christ is known in the scriptures as the only
          begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth, and it is
          written of Him as being the brightness of the Father's glory and
          the express image of His person. The word image we understand in
          the same sense as we do the word in the 3rd verse of the 5th
          chapter of Genesis, "And Adam lived an hundred and thirty years,
          and begat a son in his own likeness, after his image." I am quite
          satisfied to be made aware by the scriptures, and by the Spirit
          of God, that He is not only the God and Father of Jesus Christ,
          but is also the Father of our spirits and the Creator of our
          bodies which bear His image as Seth bore the image of his father
          Adam. Adam begat many children who bore His image, but Seth is no
          doubt more particularly mentioned, because he was more like his
          father than the rest of the family.
          We bear the image of our earthly parents in their fallen state,
          but by obedience to the gospel of salvation, and the renovating
          influences of the Holy Ghost, and the holy resurrection, we shall
          put on the image of the heavenly, in beauty, glory, power and
          goodness. Jesus Christ was so like His Father that on one
          occasion in answer to a request, "Show us the Father," He said,
          "He that hath seen me hath seen the Father." The strongest
          testimony that can be bone to the minds of men is the testimony
          of the Father concerning the Son, and the testimony of the Son
          concerning the Father, by the power of the revelations of the
          Spirit, which every man who is born of woman possesses more or
          less, and which, if mankind would listen to it, would lead them
          to the knowledge of God, and ultimately, assisted by the
          ordinances of the gospel, into His presence.
          If there is anything that is great and good and wise among men,
          it cometh from God. If there are men who possess great ability as
          statesmen, or as philosophers, or who possess remarkable
          scientific knowledge and skill, the credit thereof belongs to
          God, for He dispenses it to His children whether they believe in
          Him or not, or whether they sin against Him or not; it makes no
          difference; but all will have to account to Him for the way and
          manner in which they have used the talents committed unto them.
          If we believe the plain, broad statements of the bible, we must
          believe that Jesus Christ is the light that lighteth every man
          that cometh into the world; none are exempt. This applies to all
          who possess the least degree of light and intelligence, no matter
          how small; wherever intelligence can be found, God is the author
          of it. This light is inherent according to a law of
          eternity--according to the law of the Gods, according to the law
          of Him whom we serve as the only wise, true and living God to us.
          He is the author of this light to us. Yet our knowledge is very
          limited; who can tell the future, and know it as the past is
          known to us? It is a small thing, if we were acquainted with the
          principle. Were we acquainted with this principle, we could just
          as well read the future as the past. 
          The Latter-day Saints believe in Jesus Christ, the only begotten
          Son of the Father, who came in the meridian of time, performed
          his work, suffered the penalty and paid the debt of man's
          original sin by offering up Himself, was resurrected from the
          dead, and ascended to His Father; and as Jesus descended below
          all things, so He will ascend above all things. We believe that
          Jesus Christ will come again, as it is written of Him: "And while
          they looked steadfastly toward Heaven as He went up, behold, two
          men stood by them in white apparel; which also said, Ye men of
          Galilee why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus which
          is taken from you unto heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye
          have seen Him go unto heaven."
          Strange as it may appear to many we believe that Jesus Christ
          will descend from heaven to earth again even as He ascended into
          heaven. "Behold, He cometh with clouds, and every eye shall see
          Him, and they also which pierced Him: and all kindreds of the
          earth shall wail because of Him." He will come to receive His
          own, and rule and reign king of nations as He does king of
          saints; "For He must reign, till He hath put all enemies under
          His feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death." He
          will banish sin from the earth and its dreadful consequences,
          tears shall be wiped from every eye and there shall be nothing to
          hurt or destroy in all God's holy mountain.
          In view of the establishment of the kingdom of God upon the earth
          by Jesus Christ, John the Baptist proclaimed, that the kingdom of
          heaven is at hand. "Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make His
          paths straight;" and, "John did baptize in the wilderness, and
          preach the baptism of repentance, for the remission of sins."
          Jesus Christ sent His disciples to preach the gospel to every
          creature, to the king and the peasant, to the great and the
          small, to the rich and the poor, to the bond and the free, to the
          black and the white; they were sent to preach the gospel of
          repentance and remission of sins to all the world, and "He that
          believeth and is baptized shall be saved, but he that believeth
          not shall be damned; and these signs shall follow them that
          believe: In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak
          with new tongues; they shall take up serpents, and if they drink
          any deadly thing it shall not hurt them, they shall lay hands on
          the sick and they shall recover." 
          The Latter-day Saints, this strange people as they are called,
          believe and practice this gospel; they believe that the acts of
          the creatures, in the performance of the ordinances, prove to the
          heavens, to God, to angels and to the good who are upon the
          earth--to their brethren and to those who are not their brethren
          in a church capacity--to those who believe and to those who do
          not believe, that they are sincere in their belief before God and
          man. Every doctrine and principle that is laid down in the Old
          and New Testaments for salvation, this people will persist in
          believing and practicing; and, for so doing, they have become a
          byword, and are wondered at by the orthodox Christians of the
          19th century, who are truly astonished that anybody, in this
          enlightened age, should emphatically believe that the Lord and
          His servants anciently spoke the truth, and intended their words
          should be believed and practiced by all who desire salvation. It
          is our privilege, if we so wish, to disbelieve the words of God
          or a part of them; but we choose rather to believe all the words
          of God, and are trying to observe all of His precepts, to purify
          the Lord God in our hearts.
          There cannot be found a people upon the face of the whole earth
          who are more perfect in the belief and practice of the gospel of
          Jesus Christ than are the Latter-day Saints, and there exists no
          people who are more easily governed. We have been gathered from
          many nations, and speak many languages; we have been ruled by
          different nationalities, and educated in different religions, yet
          we dwell together in Utah under one government, believe in the
          same God and worship Him in the same way, and we are all one in
          Christ Jesus. The world wonder at this, and fear the union that
          prevails among this, as they are called, singular people. Why is
          this? It is because the Spirit of the Lord Almighty is in the
          people, and they follow its dictates, and they hearken to the
          truth, and live by it; this unites them in one, and causeth them
          to dwell together in peace; and were it not for pettifogging
          lawyers and judges who are among us, a law suit would not be
          heard of in Utah from one year's end to another. When many of
          these people come to Utah they are poor and houseless, but they
          go to work and labor away with all their might, without a murmur,
          under wise and judicious guidance, and in a short time they are
          able to gather from the soil, the water and the air, the
          essential and solid comforts of life.
          When a lawyer comes into the church, if he happens to have a
          little common sense left, and will take to ploughing and
          cultivating the soil, there is a chance for him to make a man of
          himself; but if he follows his former customs and habits, the
          chances are against him, he may ruin himself, lose the Spirit of
          the Lord, if he ever possessed it, and go back into midnight
          It is through the proclamation of the gospel that this great
          people have been gathered from their homes in distant parts of
          the earth. It is not in the power of man to accomplish such a
          work of gathering thousands of men, women, and children from
          different nations to a distant inland country, and unite them
          together and make of them a powerful nation. They heard the sound
          of the gospel, they repented of their sins, and were baptized for
          the remission of them, and received the Holy Ghost by the laying
          on of hands; this Spirit caused them to gather themselves
          together for the truth's sake; they came here because the voice
          of the Lord called them together from the ends of the earth. They
          needed not to be persuaded to gather themselves together, for
          they knew it was the will of God by the power of the Spirit which
          they had received through the ordinances of the gospel. Here sits
          brother George D. Watt, our reporter, who was the first man to
          receive the gospel in a foreign land; there had not been a word
          spoken to him about gathering to America; but he prophesied that
          the land of America was the land of Zion, and that the Lord would
          gather His people to that land in the last days, and thus he
          prophesied by the Spirit of prophecy which he had received by
          embracing the gospel.
          Wherever the gospel is preached in all the world, and the people
          repent, are baptized, and receive the Holy Ghost by the laying on
          of hands, that Spirit teaches them that America is the land of
          Zion, and they begin straightway to prepare to gather, and thus
          the Lord is building up His kingdom in our day. Were it not that
          I possess the Spirit of truth which reveals to me the purposes of
          God, it would appear to me a strange work and a wonder; but I can
          understand that the Lord is feeling after the inhabitants of the
          earth, and teaching the honest in heart the truth, and diffusing
          His Spirit among them, and offering to all men life and
          If the message which the Lord is sending among the nations is
          rejected by them, they will crumble and fall, and cease to exist.
          The set time has come for the Lord to favor Zion; He is sending
          His servants to the uttermost parts of the earth to declare the
          truth to the inhabitants thereof, which they can receive or
          reject, and be saved or be damned. This is a hard saying--who can
          bear it? A gentleman asked the Prophet Joseph once if he believed
          that all other sects and parties would be damned excepting the
          Mormons. Joseph Smith's reply was, "Yes, sir, and most of the
          Mormons too, unless they repent." We believe that all will be
          damned who do not receive the gospel of Jesus Christ; but we do
          not believe that they will go into a lake which burns with
          brimstone and fire, and suffer unnamed and unheard of torments,
          inflicted by cruel and malicious devils to all eternity.
          The sectarian doctrine of final rewards and punishments is as
          strange to me as their bodiless, partless, and passionless God.
          Every man will receive according to the deeds done in the body,
          whether they be good or bad. All men, excepting those who sin
          against the Holy Ghost, who shed innocent blood or who consent
          thereto, will be saved in some kingdom; for in my father's house,
          says Jesus, are many mansions. Where is John Wesley's abode in
          the other world? He is not where the Father and the Son live, but
          he is gone into what is called hades, or paradise, or the
          spirit-world. He did not receive the gospel as preached by Jesus
          Christ and His apostles; it was not then upon the earth. The
          power of the Holy Priesthood was not then among men; but I
          suppose that Mr. Wesley lived according to the best light he had,
          and tried to improve upon it all the days of his life. Where is
          the departed spirit of that celebrated reformer? It occupies a
          better place than ever entered his heart to conceive of when he
          was in the flesh. This is a point of doctrine, however, which I
          have not time to speak upon at large now, even if I had strength
          to do so.
          The Lord sent His angel and called and ordained Joseph Smith,
          first to the Aaronic and then to the Melchizedek Priesthood, and
          Joseph Smith ordained others. He baptized believers and confirmed
          them and organized the church. The Lord revealed to him that
          order which is now in our midst with regard to our organization
          as a people, and there is no better among men. It is the
          government of the Lord Almighty, and we think it is very good.
          The Lord is again speaking to the children of men, who have
          opened their ears to hear, and their hearts to understand; He
          communicates His will to this people, although they may be
          ignorant and guilty of a thousand wrongs, and some will
          apostatize; yet we are the best people upon the earth, the most
          peaceable, the most industrious, and know the best how to take
          care of ourselves of any people now living who are not the people
          of God; and what we do not know God will teach us, and what we
          cannot do He will help us to perform, if we continue to do His
          will and keep His commandments; for in doing this we shall live,
          grow and increase in numbers and in strength, and I pray that we
          may grow in grace and in the knowledge of the truth, for without
          this we are nothing. To me it is the kingdom of God or nothing
          upon the earth. Without it I would not give a farthing for the
          wealth, glory, prestige and power of all the world combined; for,
          like the dew upon the grass, it passeth away and is forgotten,
          and like the flower of the grass it withereth, and is not. Death
          levels the most powerful monarch with the poorest starving
          mendicant; and both must stand before the judgment seat of Christ
          to answer for the deeds done in the body.
          To us life is the sweetest of all enjoyments. A man will give all
          that he has for his life, yet it is compared to a span length,
          and is swift to its termination like the shuttle that passeth
          over the weaver's beam. Even when denied the enjoyment of health
          and of worldly comforts and conveniences, still will men cling to
          life to the last. The kingdom of God secures unto the faithful
          eternal life, with wives, children, and friends, in glory
          immortal, and in eternal felicity and bliss. Life eternal in His
          presence is the greatest gift that God can bestow upon His
          children. This life is nothing in point of duration in comparison
          with the life which is to come to the faithful, and for that
          reason we say that in this life it is the kingdom of God or
          nothing to us. With the kingdom of God and the facilities it
          offers for an everlasting progression in godliness until we know
          all things as our Father in Heaven knows them, there is no life
          of grater importance than this life, for there is no life in
          heaven or on earth to the true followers of Jesus Christ that is
          not incorporated in His gospel. Those who reject the gospel, when
          it is proclaimed to them by the authority of heaven, cannot know
          the Father and the Son, and are cut off from the eternal life
          which this knowledge alone gives.
          We are in the hands of the Almighty as a people, and He is able
          to take care of us. We entertain no antipathies against any
          person or community upon this earth; but we would give eternal
          life to all, if they would receive it at our hands--we would
          preach the truth to them and administer to them the ordinances of
          the gospel. But, it is said, you believe in polygamy, and we
          cannot receive the gospel from your hands. We have been told a
          great many times that polygamy is not according to Christianity.
          The Protestant reformers believed the doctrine of polygamy.
          Philip, Landgrave of Hesse, one of the principal lords and
          princes of Germany, wrote to the great reformer Martin Luther and
          his associate reformers, anxiously imploring them to grant unto
          him the privilege of marrying a second wife, while his first
          wife, the princes, was yet living. He urged that the practice was
          in accordance with the Bible, and not prohibited under the
          Christian dispensation. Upon the reception of this letter,
          Luther, who had denounced the Romish church for prohibiting the
          marriage of priests, and who favored polygamy, met in council
          with the principal Reformers to consult upon the letter which had
          been received from the Landgrave. They wrote him a lengthy letter
          in reply, approving of this taking a second wife, saying:--
          "There is no need of being much concerned for what men will say,
          provided all goes right with conscience. So far do we approve it,
          and in those circumstances only by us specified, for the gospel
          hath neither recalled nor forbid what was permitted in the law of
          Moses with respect to the marriage. Jesus Christ has not changed
          the external economy, but added justice only, and life
          everlasting for reward. He teaches the true way of obeying God,
          and endeavours to repair the corruption of nature."
          This letter was written at Wittemburg, the Wednesday after the
          feast of St. Nicholas, 1539, and was signed by Martin Luther,
          Philip Melancthon, Martin Bucer and five other Reformers, and was
          written in Melancthon's own handwriting.
          The marriage was solemnised on the 4th of March, 1540, by the
          Rev. Denis Melanther, chaplain to Philip. Philip's first wife was
          so anxious "that the soul and body of her dearest spouse should
          run no further risk, and that the glory of God might be
          increase," that she freely consented to the match.
          This letter of the great Reformer's was not a hasty conclusion on
          their part that polygamy was sanctioned by the gospel, for in the
          year 1522, seventeen years before they wrote this letter, Martin
          Luther himself, in a sermon which he delivered at Wittemburg for
          the reformation of marriage, clearly pronounced in favor of
          These transactions are published in the work entitled "History of
          the variations of the Protestant churches."
          Ladies and gentlemen, I exhort you to think for yourselves, and
          read your Bibles for yourselves, get the Holy Spirit for
          yourselves, and pray for yourselves, that your minds may be
          divested of false traditions and early impressions that are
          untrue. Those who are acquainted with the history of the world
          are not ignorant that polygamy has always been the general rule
          and monogamy the exception. Since the founding of the Roman
          empire monogamy has prevailed more extensively than in times
          previous to that. The founders of that ancient empire were
          robbers and women stealers, and made laws favoring monogamy in
          consequence of the scarcity of women among them, and hence this
          monogamic system which now prevails throughout all Christendom,
          and which has been so fruitful a source of prostitution and
          whoredom throughout all the Christian monogamic cities of the Old
          and New World, until rottenness and decay are at the root of
          their institutions both national and religious. Polygamy did not
          have its origin with Joseph Smith, but it existed from the
          beginning. So far as I am concerned as an individual, I did not
          ask for it; I never desired it; and if I ever had a trial of my
          faith in the world, it was when Joseph Smith revealed that
          doctrine to me; and I had to pray incessantly and exercise faith
          before the Lord until He revealed to me the truth, and I was
          satisfied. I say this at the present time for the satisfaction of
          both saint and sinner. Now, here are the commandments of the
          Lord, and here are the wishes of wicked men, which shall we obey?
          It is the Lord and them for it.
          I pray that the Spirit of Truth may find its way to each heart,
          that we may all love the truth more than error, and cling to that
          which is good that we may all be saved in the kingdom of our God.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 /
          Brigham Young, August 1-10, 1865
                          Brigham Young, August 1-10, 1865
                               SUMMARY OF INSTRUCTIONS.
           Given by President Brigham Young to the people of Box Elder and
                         Cache Counties, August 1-10, 1865.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          I wish to present some counsel unto to the people on the subject
          of their temporal life and point out to them what is their true
          interest in regard to merchandising. I would propose to the
          brethren that they keep their grain until they can get money for
          it, then put that money into the hands of business men, and let
          them purchase goods with it, which the people can freight
          themselves, and thus let every ward in the Territory supply
          themselves from abroad with what they really require; by so
          doing, the people will have the handling of the means which the
          Lord has given them, and the greater portion of it will not go
          into the pockets of speculators to enrich and fatten strangers,
          but the large profits, which they have made and carried out of
          the country, will remain here to improve the country, and to
          improve our condition as a people. We sell our grain to the
          merchant, and receive our pay in goods. The grain he has bought
          of us, he sells to the army, or to mail contractors for a greatly
          increased price, which affords him a large profit upon his goods,
          and upon the wheat which his goods have bought, and all this he
          gets in money.
          Let the past ignorance and folly suffice us, and instead of
          giving away our strength for naught, let us enjoy the full
          benefit of our labors ourselves. Why not appoint in every ward of
          the Territory a good business man, who is filled with integrity
          and truth, to make contracts for the people of the ward, and let
          the convention prices be the rule or not sell? Why not draw money
          for our grain and spend it ourselves, instead of allowing those
          who have no interest with us to handle it for us and pocket
          fortunes which we should enjoy and lay out in redeeming the earth
          and in building up the kingdom of God in all the world? We can do
          this if we will.
          We have yet much to learn, and we are learning little by little,
          and I do think that we shall yet come to understanding in
          sustaining ourselves, building up the kingdom of God, renovating
          the earth, keeping our enemies from our midst, sanctifying
          ourselves and the earth, that the latter may be finally
          celestialized to dwell in the presence of our Father and God. If
          we could all see and understand things as they are, we would heap
          up the riches of this world. What for? To gather the poor from
          among all nations, and buy out every foot of land that is for
          sale upon the continent of America. We should be the most
          industrious and the most economical of any people upon the face
          of the whole earth. We should waste nothing, but make everything
          in some way or other minister to our wants and independence.
          Everything which we use to feed the life of man or beast, not a
          grain of it should be permitted to go to waste, but should be
          made to pass through the stomach of some animal; everything,
          also, which will fertilize our gardens and our fields should be
          sedulously saved and wisely husbanded, that nothing may be lost
          which contains the elements of food and raiment for man and
          sustenance for beast.
          Time is allotted unto man wherein to labor and perform his work
          under the sun; if our time is properly employed and judiciously
          divided to our varied duties and labors, each man and woman
          performing his or her part faithfully, the land would be filled
          with real wealth, and there would be an abundance of means to
          prosecute every labor and every private and public improvement
          which we desire to make for our own comfort and convenience and
          that of our friends and neighbors and the community at large.
          Were we to pursue this course faithfully, and continue so to do,
          eternal permanency would be added to the general peace and
          freedom which we now enjoy, and we never would be brought into
          bondage again in any respect by the power of the enemy, but we
          would continue to live and serve the Lord until the earth would
          be sanctified and the saints inherit it for ever and ever.
          A few words upon the subject of example; and these I speak
          particularly to my brethren, the Elders of Israel, yet they will
          apply to all classes of mankind. It is a rule with me, and always
          has been, to request nothing of the people that I am not willing
          to do myself, to require no obedience of them that I am unwilling
          to yield. Experience has taught me, that example is the best
          method of preaching to any people. It is written--"Then spake
          Jesus to the multitude, and to His disciples, saying, the Scribes
          and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat: all, therefore, whatsoever
          they bid you observe, that observe and do: but do not ye after
          their works: for they say and do not." If we teach righteousness,
          let us also practice righteousness in every sense of the word; if
          we teach morality let us be moral; let us see to it that we
          preserve ourselves within the bounds of all the good which we
          teach to others. I am sure this course will be good to live by
          and good to die by, and when we get through the journey of life
          here, what a consolation it will be to us to know that we have
          done as we have wished others to do by us in all respects. This
          is my doctrine.
          Let us, as teachers of righteousness, not only teach the whole
          law of God, but do it ourselves. And when we pray, let us not ask
          our Heavenly Father to do that for us which we would not help Him
          to do were it in our power. When our brethren, who have the cause
          of God at heart pray, we invariably hear them ask Him to cleanse
          the earth from sin, and sanctify it and prepare it for the Lord
          to dwell upon. While we thus pray, we should be employed in
          sanctifying ourselves first, and then in redeeming and
          sanctifying the earth, for this the work we are called to
          perform, aided by the Almighty. We pray the Lord to preserve the
          righteous and to let the wickedness of the wicked come to an end,
          and "O Lord defend Thy people and fight their battles." We should
          be prepared and be as ready and willing to defend ourselves as we
          are that the Lord should be ready and willing to defend us. We
          should be as ready and willing to fight our own battles as to
          have the Lord fight them for us. We should be just as willing to
          exercise the ability God has given to us to clothe ourselves, to
          build comfortable habitations for ourselves and our families, as
          He has been willing to bestow that ability upon us. We should be
          just as willing to learn to govern and control ourselves, and to
          abide in the truth, as we are to have the Lord assist us in doing
          so. When we fully perform our part, the Lord will not be backward
          in performing all that He has promised, if He should have to
          waste away and utterly destroy nations and kingdoms to do it.
          We all believe that the Lord will fight our battles; but how?
          Will He do it while we are unconcerned and make no effort
          whatever for our own safety when an enemy is upon us? If we make
          no efforts to guard our towns, our houses, our cities, our wives
          and children, will the Lord guard them for us? He will not; but
          if we pursue the opposite course and strive to help Him to
          accomplish His designs, then will He fight our battles. We are
          baptized for the remission of sins; but it would be quite as
          reasonable to expect remission of sins without baptism, as to
          expect the Lord to fight our battles without our taking every
          precaution to be prepared to defend ourselves. The Lord requires
          us to be quite as willing to fight our own battles as to have Him
          fight them for us. If we are not ready for an enemy when he comes
          upon us, we have not lived up to the requirements of Him who
          guides the ship of Zion, or who dictates the affairs of his
          The Lord has promised to provide for His Saints, to feed them and
          clothe them; but He expects them to plough and plant, sow and
          reap, and prepare their bread from the increase of the soil. It
          is just as reasonable to suppose that He will raise our grain and
          fruit for us while we are sunning ourselves, or lying in a state
          of inactivity in the shade--that He will grind our wheat and make
          it into cakes for us--as to expect that He will fight our battles
          when we will not make a motion towards preparing for self-defence
          against any enemy that may approach us. We cannot expect that the
          Lord will fight our battles if we sell our powder and lead and
          arms to the Indians, and leave ourselves unarmed and defenceless.
          If we do this, He will leave us to ourselves to suffer for this
          great neglect, as we should have to suffer or want of bread, if
          we did not take the proper precautions to raise it from the
          ground when it would be in our power to do so. If we wish to
          preserve ourselves from suffering cold in the winter, it is
          expected that we build houses and provide fuel. Now, the Lord
          will not do this for us, when we have the material all around us
          and the strength to perform the labor required. If we wish to
          keep our cattle from perishing, it is necessary to lay up fodder;
          the winter may be severe or it may be mild; but in taking the
          precaution of laying up fodder, we are prepared for either a mild
          or a severe winter. The Lord has endowed us with ability to
          gather from the elements around us every material which is
          necessary for food, raiment, and shelter. We know how to raise
          sheep, and how to manufacture their wool into cloth. We know how
          to raise flax, and cotton, and hemp, and silk, and how to make
          them contribute to our comfort. We know how to raise grain and
          fruit in abundance, and what to do with them when we have raised
          them; and we hope to know how to use weapons of defence as well
          as any other people or nation, if ever necessary, which I hope
          and pray will never be necessary. We should always be willing and
          ready to obey every good and wholesome law, whether it be to arm
          ourselves as the law directs, to train in the ranks, to labor
          with our hands, to preach the Gospel, to pray or to pay tithing;
          for those who obey in all things will enjoy the spirit and
          blessings of the kingdom of God in time and in eternity. Those
          who refuse to do their part for the maintenance of the public
          peace and the public security are not worthy o the fellowship of
          the Saints, and should be severed from the church.
          It is required by the laws of the Territory of Utah of every male
          citizen from eighteen to forty-five to be armed and equipped and
          ready for any duty he may be called upon to perform as one of the
          militia of the county; and if any refuse to obey the laws of the
          land, I would try them before their bishops for that as readily
          as I would if they were to refuse to pay a just debt; and if they
          would not repent, I would sever them from the church, and give
          them over to the laws of the land. I do no know that there is one
          person in the Territory who would refuse to perform military
          duty; there are strangers in our midst; but I very much doubt if
          one could be found who would refuse to do military duty.
          I look upon the Saints with delight; they are my pride; they are
          my glory; in fact, this is the family that our heavenly Father
          has selected as His chosen children, although many may yet leave
          it and go away; but here are my fathers, my mothers, my sisters,
          my brothers, here are my friends and associates, and here is my
          joy. I have never desired to be in any place only where the
          Saints live; I have never desired to associate with any other
          people. I know that we must become of one heart and one mind in
          all things, to fulfil the requirements of heaven in the building
          up of the kingdom of God upon the earth. We enjoy ourselves in
          our public amusements, but our greatest joy is to meet, as we
          have now met, to instruct each other in the principles and faith
          of the holy Gospel, that we may increase in faith, in knowledge,
          in understanding, and in the power of God to obtain all that is
          for us, and to grow in grace and in the knowledge of the truth as
          Jesus Christ did when He was upon the earth. 
          Prepare to die, is not the exhortation in this church and
          kingdom; but prepare to live is the word with us and improve all
          we can in this life that we may be the better prepared to enjoy a
          better life hereafter, wherein we may enjoy a more exalted
          condition of intelligence, wisdom, light, knowledge, power,
          glory, and exaltation. Then let us seek to extend the present
          life to the uttermost, by observing every law of health, and by
          properly balancing labor, study rest, and recreation, and thus
          prepare for a better life. Let us teach these principles to our
          children, that, in the morning of their days, they may be taught
          to lay the foundation of health and strength and constitution and
          power of life in their bodies. Let us teach them good manners,
          orderly conduct and good behavior in every respect; and as soon
          as they can understand what you mean, teach them to be strictly
          honest, truthful and virtuous, that they may grow up in Christ
          their living head. Some of the brightest spirits who dwell in the
          bosom o the Father are making their appearance among this people,
          of whom the Lord will make a Royal Priesthood, a peculiar nation
          that He can own and bless, talk with, and associate with.
          I wish to present before the people the subject of a telegraph
          wire through our settlements. It is a subject which is worthy of
          our attention, and an enterprise which, when completed, will be
          of immense benefit in many ways to our country. This work we can
          do almost entirely within ourselves. We can get the poles from
          the mountains and plant them; the wires and insulators we shall
          be under the necessity of importing from abroad, and for which we
          must pay money. We can sell our grain and get the money. The
          freighting we can do ourselves.
          Cache Valley should be strong enough to poll three thousand
          votes, and the people are well able to sustain a printing press.
          I think that sufficient news could be collected in Cache Valley
          to make a small sheet interesting, and I have no doubt talent
          sufficient to produce communication both instructive and amusing.
          I would also recommend the establishment in Logan of a machine
          shop for the general good of the people in this and the
          neighboring valleys.
          We know the Gospel to be true by the spirit of revelation, "For
          what man knoweth the things of a man, save by the spirit of man
          which is in him? Even so the things of God knoweth no man, but by
          the spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the
          world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the
          things that are freely given to us of God." It is our privilege
          to live so as to know the voice of the good shepherd for
          ourselves, and to understand the will of God concerning us as
          individuals. When we live so as to enjoy the glory of our
          religion, then is our life a happy one, and our hope is bright
          that we shall secure to ourselves life everlasting in the
          presence of our Father and God.
          The religion of Jesus Christ is a matter-of-fact religion, and
          taketh hold of the every-day duties and realities of this life.
          When people go to meeting in the so-called Christian world, they
          expect to hear the sayings of Jesus Christ explained and enlarged
          upon and dressed up and polished by the learning of men to make
          them fit for the ears of the professors of the 19th century; or,
          they expect to hear some of the dark sayings of the ancient
          prophets expounded, and how the Lord used to manifest himself to
          the people in the days of old, and how He spoke to them, and gave
          them dreams and visions and wonderful manifestations, and what a
          delightful thing it was for them to gather out from the wicked
          world and be organised by Him, and how they enjoyed themselves in
          their social capacity, and what good times they all had in
          ancient days; and thus they extol the ancients to the heavens,
          tell of the doings of Adam, of Enoch, of Noah, of Abraham, of the
          patriarchs, of the prophets, of Jesus and His Apostles; and go on
          to tell about the resurrection, and describe the mysteries and
          joys thereof on the one hand and the torments of the damned in
          that lake of fire and brimstone and bottomless pit to which they
          are to be consigned on the other, and who are going to have their
          blood spilled, and their spirits spilled, etc. At the close of
          such a meeting the exclamation heard on all sides is, what a
          glorious meeting we have had, what a glorious sermon we have
          listened to; when I would not give the ashes of a rye straw for
          the whole of it as to the amount of real practical good it does
          the people, more than in a moral point of view. 
          When people are hungry they need substantial food; when they are
          thirsty they need substantial drink. Moses' smiting the rock
          would not have benefitted the people in the least, if water had
          not gushed out. It is the duty of the true minister of Christ to
          instruct the people of God how to get their food to-day, and to
          teach them by precept and example how to become an independent
          nation. How long shall we have the privilege of ending to New
          York, St. Louis, or other places to buy our goods? Babylon will
          surely fall. It may be said that we shall always be poor without
          commerce, we shall always be poor with it, unless we command it;
          and unless we can do this, we are better without it. Instead of
          sending our wealth abroad to purchase artificials, why not try to
          make them ourselves, or do without them? Why not continue our
          endeavours until we can manufacture cotton cloth as fine as these
          children are wearing today? Why not raise flax and prepare it
          with care, and continue our efforts until we can make linens of
          every description and quality? This home industry should be
          persevered in from year to year with the view to our ultimate
          independence of a foreign market. This is our duty. It is true we
          do not do it. Instead of our young ladies letting the time hang
          heavily upon their hands, or instead of being engaged in some
          useless and profitless employment, they would enjoy much more
          real peace of mind to be engaged in the production of some useful
          material of some kind, it may be of silk, of linen, of woollen,
          of straw, or of artificials and ornaments manufactured from
          paper, feathers, or other material produced at home.
          Every effort of this kind made by our sisters has its weight in
          the struggle which we should all make to cut ourselves entirely
          loose from any dependence upon those who have no other aim in
          view but our final dismemberment as a society, and our utter
          overthrow as a people. The Lord requires this of us; it comes
          within the pale of our duty; and in addition to this, to
          live--for it is the first and foremost of all He requires of
          us--so that we shall know the voice of the good Shepherd always;
          to lie so that we shall know the truth when we hear it, and our
          heart shall say amen to it. If there are any who have never heard
          the Gospel until to-day, and wish to know how to serve God, begin
          by repenting of your sins, and by being baptised for the
          remission of them, and receive the laying on of hands for the
          gift of the Holy Ghost, and ever after live so as to be able to
          say, "my conscience is void of offence towards God and man."
          The Lord rules in the heavens, and does His pleasure among men. I
          will here say as the Lord live, if this people will be faithful
          in the performance of every duty, they will never come upon a
          field of battle to fight their enemies. There is no man among
          them who trifles with the counsel given to him to be armed and
          equipped and ready for any emergency but what has lost the spirit
          of God more or less. If the Saints neglect to pray, and violate
          the day that is set apart for the worship of God, they will lose
          His spirit. If a man shall suffer himself to be overcome with
          anger, and curse and swear, taking the name of the Deity in vain,
          he cannot retain the Holy Spirit. In short, if a man shall do
          anything which he knows to be wrong, and repenteth not, he cannot
          enjoy the Holy Spirit, but will walk in darkness and ultimately
          deny the faith. Every good and wholesome law we should obey
          strictly, and do it with a good and honest heart. If we will
          pursue this course, the Lord Almighty will put hooks in the jaws
          of our enemies, and lead them whithersoever. He will.
          It is far better to die in a good cause than to live in a bad
          one; it is better to die doing good than to live doing evil. To
          the Saints of latter-days who do their duty to the best of their
          knowledge, I promise peace; but I have no promise of God for
          those who do not do their duty. When I speak of our duty it
          applies to all, male and female. It is the right of the mother
          who labors in the kitchen, with her little prattling children
          around, to enjoy the Spirit of Christ, and to know her duty with
          regard to those children; but it is not her duty and privilege to
          dictate to her husband in his duties and business. If that mother
          or wife enjoys the gift and power of the Holy Ghost, she will
          never intrude upon the rights of her husband. It is the right and
          privilege of the husband to know his duty with regard to his
          wives and children, his flocks and his herds, his fields and his
          possessions; though I have seen women who, I thought, actually
          knew more about the business of life than their husbands
          themselves did, and were really more capable of directing a farm,
          the building of a house, and the management of flocks and herds,
          etc., than the men were; but if men were to live up to their
          privileges this would not be the case; for it is their right to
          claim the light of truth and that intelligence and knowledge
          necessary to enable them to carry on every branch of their
          business successfully.
          It is the right and privilege of every Elder in Israel to enjoy
          the Holy Ghost, and the light of it, to know everything which
          concerns himself and his individual duties, but it is not his
          right and privilege to dictate his superior in office, nor to
          give him counsel, unless he is called upon to do so, then he may
          make suggestions; and if the people of a ward are living in the
          faithful performance of their several duties, their faith and
          their prayers will be concentrated before the Lord, in the name
          of Jesus, for and in behalf of their bishop, that he may know his
          business and be made fully capable to fulfil the duties of his
          calling to the honor of God and the salvation of the people.
          Wherever a man is appointed to preside, he should preside in the
          dignity of his office, and be able to discriminate between his
          duties as a presiding officer in a branch, he being a high priest
          we will say, and the duties of the bishop. I am gratified to say
          that such a thing does exist in the midst of this people that one
          man can preside as a president and another as a bishop, in the
          same ward, and not quarrel with each other; each one has the
          privilege for himself of knowing his duty by the revelations of
          the Lord Jesus Christ. And if all presidents and bishops were
          inspired by this spirit, they never would have any difficulty,
          but they would see eye to eye. It is the duty and privilege of
          the Twelve Apostles to have the Holy Ghost for their constant
          companion, and live always in the Spirit of Revelation, to know
          their duty and understand their calling; this is also the duty
          and privilege of the First Presidency of the church.
          In the setting forth of items of doctrine which pertain to the
          progress and further building up of the kingdom of God upon the
          earth, and the revealing of His mind and will, He has but one
          mouth through which to make known His will to His people. When
          the Lord wishes to give a revelation to His people, when He
          wishes to reveal new items of doctrine to them, or administer
          chastisement, He will do it through the man whom He has
          appointeth to that office and calling. The rest of the offices
          and callings of the church are helps and governments for the
          edifying of the body of Christ and the perfection of the Saints,
          etc., every president, bishop, elder, priest, teacher, deacon and
          member standing in his order and officiating in his standing and
          degree of priesthood as ministers of the words of life, as
          shepherds to watch over departments and sections of the flock of
          God in all the world, and as helps to strengthen the hands of the
          Presidency of the whole church. A sister who receives the gift of
          tongues is not thereby empowered to dictate her president, or the
          church. All gifts and endowments given of the Lord to members of
          His church are not given to control the church; but they are
          under the control and guidance of the priesthood, and are judged
          of by it. Some have erred upon this point, and have been led
          captive by the devil.
          Whenever there is a disposition manifested in any of the members
          of this church to question the right of the President of the
          whole church to direct in all things, you see manifested the
          evidences of apostacy--of a spirit which, if encouraged, will
          lead to separation from the church and final destruction;
          wherever there is a disposition to operate against any legally
          appointed officer of this kingdom, no matter in what capacity he
          is called to act, if persisted in, it will be followed by the
          same results; they will "walk after the flesh in the lust of
          uncleanness, and despise government. Presumptuous are they,
          self-willed; they are not afraid to speak evil of dignities.
          Whereas angels, which are greater in power and might, bring not
          railing accusations against them before the Lord."
          In all our daily pursuits in life, of whatever nature and kind,
          Latter-day Saints, and especially those who hold important
          positions in the kingdom of God, should maintain a uniform and
          even temper, both when at home and when abroad. They should not
          suffer reverses and unpleasant circumstances to sour their
          natures and render them fretful and unsocial at home, speaking
          words full of bitterness and biting acrimony to their wives and
          children, creating gloom and sorrow in their habitations, making
          themselves feared rather than beloved by their families. Anger
          should never be permitted to rise in our bosoms, and words
          suggested by angry feelings should never be permitted to pass our
          lips. "A soft answer turneth away wrath, but grievous words stir
          up anger." "Wrath is cruel, and anger is outrageous;" but "the
          discretion of a man deferreth his anger; and it is his glory to
          pass over a transgression."
          All that we possess and enjoy are the gifts of God to us, whether
          they be in earthly substance, physical constitution, or mental
          power; we are accountable to Him for the use we make of these
          precious gifts, and it is the imperative duty of all the sons and
          daughters of Adam and Eve to pay their tribute to Him who has
          created all things, and who is now pouring from the heavens
          instructions upon the people that they may know how to live here
          and return again into His presence. It is not our privilege to
          waste the Lord's substance upon the lusts of the flesh, nor to
          devote one day of time to vanity and sin, or to any employment
          which will tend to death. We are willing to acknowledge that we
          receive all our blessings both temporal and spiritual, from the
          munificent hand of God; but we are not always willing that He
          should advise us how to use His blessings, when they are in our
          hands, in the best possible way to build up His kingdom on the
          earth. O, consistency, thou art one of the fairest jewels in the
          life of a Saint. We ask God to bless us with houses and lands,
          and possessions, chariots and horses, etc. When we plough our
          fields, and sow grain and plant vegetables, we pray to the Lord
          for good crops, to give us a great increase; and when we have
          gathered in the abundance which He has sent us until our barns
          are full and there is no room for more, then we ask no odds of
          the Lord, and are impatient and rebellious in our feelings, when
          dictated and advised as to how this fullness of the Lord's
          blessings should be disposed of for the individual and general
          good of the community. This remark will not apply to all; but
          when the word of the Lord comes to the people, which it does all
          the time, every man and woman professing to be Latter-day Saints
          should say amen, and then straightway fulfil it to the letter.
          We calculate to continue to visit and preach to the Saints until
          all shall see eye to eye upon this matter, and become of one
          heart and of one mind in all things, and become perfectly united
          in building up the kingdom of God upon the earth, and wipe out
          wickedness from the world. I thank God that I now live in a
          community where I can live from one year to another and not hear
          the name of God blasphemed, and all the butter and eggs and flour
          that the people take to Bannack and other places would not hire
          me to be obliged to listen to it. All may not feel as tenacious
          on this point as I do; some care not how much the names of God
          and of Jesus Christ are blasphemed in their presence, if they can
          only sell their butter and eggs; or, "only give me a dollar for
          your breakfast or dinner, and I care not how much you swear and
          curse in my house and in the presence of my family." I would not
          hear the name of God blasphemed as some who profess to be
          Latter-day Saints do for all the gold that has been taken from
          the mines of California.
          May the Lord bless His people. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 /
          Brigham Young, October 9, 1865
                           Brigham Young, October 9, 1865
           Remarks by President Brigham Young, at the General Conference,
                          Salt Lake City, October 9, 1865.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          I wish now to deliver a few short discourses to the Latter-day
          Saints, and it does not matter which of them I deliver first,
          because they are all of equal interest and importance to the
          Saints, and will be spread upon the pages of the Deseret News for
          them to read at their leisure in that order that may suit them.
          The first item that presents itself to me is, to call upon these
          sisters--they forming an important element of the kingdom of God
          in the last days--to listen to the will of God concerning them,
          that they go to now and manufacture from straw, grass, or any
          other fitting material that grows in these valleys, their bonnets
          and hats, and cease to sell the barley, the oats, the wheat, etc,
          to buy imported ones, or when the wheat, and the oats and the
          barley are all sold, get your husbands to run into debt for that
          which you can as well make yourselves as not. I am satisfied that
          we can make, from material grown in these valleys, bonnets and
          hats as beautiful to look upon as any that have ever been
          imported to this Territory. I am addressing myself to the ladies
          of the kingdom of God, to those who know how to keep their
          houses, furniture and beds pure and clean, who can cook food for
          their husbands and children in a way that it will be clean,
          tasteful and wholesome. The woman that can do this I call a lady.
          In this view I differ from the world generally; for the lady of
          the world is not supposed to know anything about what is going on
          in the kitchen; her highest ambition is to be sure and be in the
          fashion, at no matter what cost to her husband or father; she
          considers that she may as well be out of the world as out of the
          There has been a great deal said upon the subject of Home
          Manufacturing; and the article of straw is the readiest to come
          at of any other material of which clothing is made. Now, my
          sisters, will you hearken to those who spend all their time to do
          you good, who traverse the world over to gather the Saints, to
          preach the Gospel, make believers and gather them together that
          they become Saints--will you hearken to this counsel and obey it?
          Rye should be sown in the spring, and cut in the proper season,
          and cured as it should be to make good straw for hats and
          bonnets, and our boys and girls should braid it, and have it made
          up, and save the immense amount of ready means which we have to
          pay out for that article alone. Will the sisters belonging to the
          kingdom of God do this? I might call for a vote of those who are
          present, and no doubt you would enter into a covenant to perform
          this duty, and many very likely would not give the matter another
          thought. I will not ask you to vote; but I will ask you to do
          this as a duty, and to commence right away in this city by wards,
          and form yourselves into societies for the accomplishment of this
          purpose, and see that the little boys and girls, instead of their
          running wild in the streets, throwing the dust and dirt into
          their hair and garments from morning until night, are brought
          into the house, their skins and clothes washed clean, their hair
          combed neatly, and they set to braiding straw. This will teach
          them to be industrious, and save them from contracting habits of
          indolence and slothfulness, and be the means of introducing an
          important branch of industry into our country. How much better
          this would be than to let our children waste their time in
          unnecessary play; they need time to study, time for recreation,
          and time to be engaged in some useful employment. It is the duty
          of parents to see that the time of their children is properly
          appropriated to pursuits of usefulness, profit and advantage to
          themselves, to their parents or guardians, and to the kingdom of
          God at large, that they may grow up to become efficient and
          worthy citizens of that kingdom.
          Bishops, will you see that enough rye is sown to supply the wants
          of the people of your wards, and see that the crop is harvested
          when it should be to make good straw for braiding? If you will do
          this, and the people will not avail themselves of making their
          own hats and bonnets, there is no complaint can be attached to
          you. I have raised crops of rye from year to year, and invited
          the people to use the straw for making bonnets and hats; but no;
          the merchants had imported bonnets, and our ladies preferred
          going to the stores and buying them. When will this people become
          Saints indeed? Not until they observe every counsel that is given
          to them of this kind, doing with their might the things that are
          required of them. I know it is the will of the Lord that this
          people should manufacture what they wear and consume; and, in
          addition to its being the will of the Lord, the liability of our
          being cut off from supplies, through being so far distant from
          the great manufacturing districts, teaches us that it is wisdom
          and true economy that we should adopt this course. The money
          which this community has expended in hats and bonnets for men,
          women, and children in the last year would bring scores and
          hundreds of the poor Saints from the old countries to these
          valleys of Utah. Is it wise in us, and pleasing to the Lord, for
          us to place the means he has blessed us with where it does not
          belong, while our sons and our daughters, instead of idling away
          their time or being employed in that which does not profit them
          or us, might be engaged in preserving such means among us to be
          applied in the further progress of the work of God?
                 My next discourse will be upon merchandising. We are
          here in these valleys of the mountains organised as a people; and
          we know how we came to be here; and we know the designs of God,
          and the designs of our enemies concerning us; we know the
          distinction which is drawn between this people and the world;
          these things we understand. Now, we propose to the Bishops,
          presiding Elders and leading members of the church, who are here
          assembled to represent the kingdom of God upon the earth, and to
          all those who are not here, who act in these capacities in the
          various places where there are Saints gathered together, to do
          their own merchandising and cease to give the wealth which the
          Lord has given us to those who would destroy the kingdom of God
          and scatter us to the four winds, if they had the power. Cease to
          buy from them the gewgaws and frivoulous things they bring here
          to sell to us for our money and means--means that we should have
          to bring the poor here, to build our temples, our towers,
          ornament our public grounds and buildings, and to beautify our
          cities. For, as merchandising has been generally conducted here,
          instead of having our means to perform these public works, it has
          been borne away by our enemies by the million.
          I wish the brethren, in all our settlements, to buy the goods
          they must have, and freight them with their own teams; and then
          let every one of the Latter-day Saints, male and female, decree
          in their hearts that they will buy of nobody else but their own
          faithful brethren, who will do good with the money they will thus
          obtain. I know it is the will of God that we should sustain
          ourselves, for, if we do not, we must perish, so far as receiving
          aid from any quarter, except God and ourselves. If we have not
          capital ourselves, there are plenty of honorable men whom our
          brethren can enter into partnership with, who would furnish and
          assist them whenever they should receive an intimation to that
          effect. I know it is our duty to save ourselves; the enemy of all
          righteousness, will do nothing to help us in that work, neither
          will his children; we have to preserve ourselves, for our enemies
          are determined to destroy us. I know it is the duty of this
          people to build up themselves; for our enemies will not build us
          up, but they will do their uttermost to tear us down. This will
          not apply to all; but there are enough to bark, and yelp, and
          growl, and snarl till the peaceable, good meaning man dare not
          open his mouth. We have thousands of warmhearted friends who dare
          not say anything in favour of this people. We have friends in
          Congress who wish us to become a State in the Union; but they
          dare not tell of it. No, let them only say in their own districts
          that they would vote for Utah to become a State, and that would
          be their political grave, and they know it. If nobody will speak
          for us, let us speak for ourselves; if no person else will do
          anything for us, let us do something for ourselves. This is
          right; it is politically right, religiously right, nationally
          right, socially and morally right, and it is right in every sense
          of the word for us to sustain ourselves.
          Let us save that money which we spend for bonnets and hats, and
          the trimmings that are upon them. You may ask me if I think my
          family will start out with a good example in this direction; I
          hope they will. If we will be diligent in this kind of economy,
          and make all we can within ourselves, and send out as little of
          our ready means as possible, it will place at our control means,
          which we do not now command, to gather thousands of the poor
          What I am now about to say is on the subject of the use of
          tobacco. Let us raise our own tobacco, or quit using it. In the
          years '49, '50, '51, '52, and '53, and so long as I kept myself
          posted respecting the amount expended yearly by this people at
          the stores for articles of merchandise, we spent upwards of
          100,000 dollars a year for tobacco alone! We now spend
          considerably more than we did then. Let us save this ready means
          in our country by abstaining from the use of this narcotic, or
          raise it ourselves. By so doing we will have that amount of means
          to circulate in channels of usefulness and profit which will add
          to our strength, to our permanency, and to our influence and
          importance as a great people. But when we place hundreds of
          thousands of dollars in the hands of those who are not of us,
          whose homes are not with us, who spend nothing to build up our
          country, but come here merely to make fortunes to spend
          elsewhere, we give them so much of our strength, and we are
          proportionately weakened. This is poor economy, and is
          displeasing to the Lord, because it retards the development of
          His purposes.
          I will not call upon you to enter into a covenant to do this, for
          some might break their covenants and that would be a sin, but I
          want what you do in this matter to be prompted by a desire to
          bring to pass some permanent profit and good to yourselves and to
          the cause which we represent. I want you to do it as I have done
          it myself. I have never made a covenant since I entered this
          Church only to do good and serve the Lord our God, and in every
          possible way aid in developing His purposes. The Lord gave me
          strength to lay aside tobacco, and it is very rarely indeed that
          I taste tea or coffee; yet I have no objection to aged persons,
          when they are fatigued and feel infirm, taking a little stimulus
          that will do them good. It is wrong to use narcotics, for the
          nervous system is destroyed or injured thereby; but we should
          maintain a healthy action of all the powers of the body, which
          should be devoted to the service of our Father and God in
          building up His kingdom on the earth.
          Now, brethren, bishops, presiding elders, influential men, men of
          property and money will you go to now and gather up the means in
          your settlements and set some good reliable men to merchandising
          in every settlement, men who, if they make anything, will devote
          it to the building up of the kingdom of God upon the earth. I
          care not how much a man makes, if he only devotes it to proper
          uses, or how rich he may be if he make a right application of his
          riches. It is the bad use that men make of their wealth which God
          objects to. Go to, my brethren, and prepare yourselves forthwith
          to import the goods you must have, and never admit of a store
          being started in your neighbourhood again that you cannot
          control. It may be asked how can you prevent it? By never
          spending a dollar with any who will not aid in developing the
          country and in building it up.
          It is the duty of this people to do their own merchandising, and,
          if I had the power, I would prevail upon them to take care of
          themselves, to provide for themselves, and use their means in a
          way to benefit and bless themselves, instead of pouring into the
          laps of those who will squander and make an ill use of it, who
          will use it to sustain the power of the enemy in his operations
          against the kingdom of God. This is right, and who can say aught
          against it? Nobody but a fault-finder or an accuser. As it has
          always been, and will be yet for some time, when the sons of God
          assemble together, Satan will be on hand as an accuser of the
          brethren, to find fault with those who are trying to do good.
          What I have said on this matter will answer my purpose.
          There is another item which I will now notice, and until we learn
          such things I will promise you that we shall never inherit the
          Celestial Kingdom. We are gathered together for the purpose of
          learning what to do with this present life and with the present
          blessings bestowed upon us. If we do not learn these lessons, how
          can we expect to be trusted with the riches of eternity; for he
          that is faithful over a few things shall be made ruler over many
          things. The item I wish to refer to is the great loss which the
          people of this Territory suffer yearly in stock. I have talked
          about it heretofore many times, and tried to prevail upon the
          brethren to save their stock. When we are blessed with an
          increase of cattle, and we disregard this blessing which the Lord
          bestows upon us, we thereby incur His displeasure, and lay
          ourselves liable to punishment. What earthly father would bestow
          blessings upon a son with satisfaction and pleasure while that
          son would continue to squander them and gamble them away for
          nothing? After a time that father would withhold his favors, and
          bestow them upon the more worthy child. The Lord is more merciful
          than we are; but there may be a termination to His gifts, if we
          do not receive them with gratitude and take good care of them
          when we have them in our possession. Let the people take care of
          their cattle and horses, and the man who does not do it will lay
          himself liable to censure in the eyes of justice.
          Listen to this advice, for here is economy. We have to gather the
          people, to send our Elders forth into the world to preach the
          Gospel to every creature; and when the people are gathered, there
          is probably not one family to fifty out of those who are brought
          here that knows anything about cultivating the earth, raising
          cattle, or doing anything to sustain themselves; we have to teach
          them this after they come here. We have importuned and plead with
          and instructed the people on these topics all the day long,
          rising early and continuing late until now; and many, a great
          many, have profited by our labors. The citizens of this city are
          tolerably comfortable; a great many of them have an abundance of
          fruit, and they enjoy it. It is very healthy for them and their
          children to eat in the season thereof, and it helps many to
          sustain their families pretty comfortable; and then they raise a
          few chickens, and they have one or two pigs in the pen, and a cow
          to give them milk and butter; though as the cows are now fed they
          are not very profitable to their owners.
          I have lamented much that the people do not take the precaution
          to feed their cows. Let those who have cows in the city sow a
          little lucerne seed in their gardens, say three or four rods
          square, and see that it is well cultivated, and you can feed your
          cows with a little of this two or three times a day, and take a
          little oats or wheat for your labor and get it chopped, and feed
          them a little of that every day and give them the weeds you pull
          out of the garden, and the slops from the kitchen. In this way it
          is not difficult to keep a cow the year round. But take a cow six
          or seven miles over Jordan for a few dry weeds, and be all day or
          as long as she remains there, without water and without shade,
          when she returns to the river he fills herself with water and
          comes home looking very full, yet hungry enough to crop the
          currant bushes where she can reach them, and eat the weeds from
          under our fences. This is not right. Raise lucerne, plant a few
          hills of corn, and take off the outside leaves of your cabbages
          and give to her; sow your beets and carrots, and what you do not
          use for greens, save and give to the cow. Save everything that
          she will eat, and fed it to her in a way that she will relish it
          and eat it all up; feed it to her fresh, and not suffer it to rot
          about the kitchen and the doors to become a sickly nuisance to
          your children.
          By taking this course, you can as well milk eight quarts of milk
          twice a day as two, according to the quality of the cow and the
          kind of feed you give her. Thus you have your milk and a little
          butter, and your meat of your own raising, and your eggs and
          chickens, and your fruit; and you have a living here off an acre
          and a quarter of land. Such a little farm well tilled and well
          managed, and the products of it economically applied, will do
          wonders towards keeping and educating a small family. Let the
          little children do their part, when they are not engaged in their
          studies, in knitting their stockings and mittens, braiding straw
          for their hats, or spinning yarn for their frocks and
          underclothing. If this people would strictly observe these simple
          principles of economy, they would soon become so rich that they
          would not have room sufficient to hold their abundance; their
          store-houses would run over with fullness, and their vats with
          new wine.
          Now, cultivate your farms and gardens well, and drive your stock
          to where they can live through the winter, if you have not feed
          for them. Do not keep so many cattle, or, in other words, more
          than you can well provide for and make profitable to yourselves
          and to the kingdom of God. We have hundreds and thousands of fat
          cattle upon the ranges, and yet we have no beef to eat, or very
          little. Kill your cattle when they are fat, and salt down the
          meat, that you may have met to eat in the winter and some to
          dispose of to your neighbors for their labour to extend your
          improvements. Lay up you meat, and not let it die on your hands.
          Such a course is not right. Cattle is made for our use, let us
          take care of them.
          I have now a proposition to make to the Latter-day Saints; and
          here is the strength and power of Israel to listen to it. It is
          to send five hundred teams to the Missouri river next
          season--five hundred good teams, with four yoke of oxen forward
          of a good wagon, to bring all the poor who have a mind to come to
          these valleys. There are hundreds of the Saints who can get to
          the frontiers, but no further; and rather than leave their homes
          in the old countries and be left among strangers in a strange
          land, they stay at home. What do you say, shall we send down five
          hundred teams next season? [The Conference was unanimously in
          favor of this movement.] I would suggest that we take cattle and
          wagons from Utah. The wagons that are made in the east now are
          not so good as they were years ago. The demand has made good
          wagon timber scarce, and it is rather difficult now to get as
          good wagons as we got a few years ago. Before the time of
          starting, you will be furnished with a circular of instructions.
          May the Lord bless you. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / Heber
          C. Kimball, October 6, 1865
                       OTHERS' SINS, NO JUSTIFICATION OF OURS.
           Remarks by President Heber C. Kimball, delivered in the Bowery,
                       Great Salt Lake City, October 6, 1865.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          Brethren and sisters, may the very peace of our God be upon you,
          upon all Israel, and upon all those who love our Lord and Saviour
          Jesus Christ in all the world.
          The more we grow in the Spirit of the Lord Jesus, the more are we
          inclined to extend the blessings of our God to all men, women and
          children who love Him. We are called to a very exceeding high
          calling, namely, to be messengers of life and salvation, holding
          the Priesthood of the Son of God for the redemption of the world.
          What manner of men ought we to be? Of all men upon the earth our
          morality should be the best, and our light should not be hid
          under a bushel but should be on the top of a bushel to be seen of
          all, that our good works may be known, and that by our good
          example we may influence others to do good and to trust in and
          serve God. Every man can exercise an influence for good or for
          evil in his sphere, and in the circle wherein he moves.
          How often people justify themselves in doing wrong because Mr. or
          Mrs. So-and-So did so; or in conducting themselves like foolish
          persons in imitation of somebody's foolish example! People
          generally are disinclined to acknowledge their faults and forsake
          them, but this we ought to do, purely because we love the right,
          doing it independently, and in defiance of the evil customs and
          examples with which we are surrounded. Every man ought to receive
          the truth wherever he finds it. Some would rather receive the
          truth only from the First Presidency and the Twelve; but we
          should acknowledge it, let it come from what source it may. Every
          person should learn to govern himself and live in this world so
          as to secure life everlasting; and to do this, we must identify
          ourselves with our Father and our God, being grafted into Him by
          the ordinances of the Gospel, and through faithfulness being
          conformed to His image, partaking of His heavenly nature as the
          graft which is put into the roots of a tree partakes of the sap
          and nature of the tree, bringing forth the fruits of
          righteousness, drawing nourishment, life and strength for ever
          from the great source of all life and good. There is no other way
          for us to identify ourselves with God. Being baptized into Christ
          we put him on and become one with Him, as he was baptized into
          His Father and became one with His Father; and thus we are all
          one in Christ Jesus. We are made one with the Father and the Son
          by observing His word, His law and His ordinances.
          If I were to commit an impropriety, another person would not be
          justified in doing the same thing. If I violate the law of God I
          shall be condemned and will not escape upon the plea that
          somebody else did the same. Every man must answer for his own
          sin. It is true we have our weaknesses. How? I am afflicted with
          rheumatic pains, or the infirmities of old age, or I am naturally
          consumptive, etc. These are weaknesses of the flesh; but may it
          be termed a weakness when men wilfully violate a plain,
          well-known law of God? The Lord requires nothing of His creature
          which they cannot perform. We are subject to the weaknesses of
          human nature, but they are not crimes, neither should they stand
          in the way of our doing all the good in our power while we live
          in the flesh, and as little harm as possible. It is a sin to
          break any of the commandments of God. When a person bears false
          witness, it is a sin; or when a person steals, it is a sin; and
          these sins must be accounted for, either in time or in eternity,
          by the person who commits them.
          We have come to this Conference from all parts of the Territory
          to be reminded of our duties, and to obtain strength in the
          worship of the Lord, and we are a good-looking people, and
          greatly blessed of the Lord. Our happiness consists not in the
          possession of earthly wealth so much as in the possession of that
          Spirit which it is our right to obtain and cherish.
          The short sentence, "Do right," embraces a great deal, and
          extends over the period of man's life, embracing all his daily
          duties. It is right for us to build that Tabernacle; it is a work
          which all the people of the Saints in these mountains are engaged
          in; and the more faithful we are in paying our tithing, these
          public works will progress the more vigorously. We all know what
          the word of the Lord is on the subject of paying tithing, and the
          use to be made of the means thus collected, namely--to build
          temples and tabernacles, and to establish the kingdom of God
          generally. The Israelites built a tabernacle in the wilderness
          wherein they deposited their holy things, which were afterwards
          removed into the temple at Jerusalem. When our temple is
          completed, it will be used for the administering of the holy
          ordinances of God; it will be for the use of the Priesthood to
          give endowments to the people. It is just as requisite that that
          temple should be built as it is that we build houses for our
          wives and children to dwell in, because the service of our God is
          not so acceptable of Him in a temporary place of worship when His
          people can make a permanent one after the pattern which is
          pleasing to Him. Let us pay our tithing faithfully, and when we
          do that there will be no trouble in making any public improvement
          we desire to make; we can bring out the rivers and large streams
          of these valleys into canals for the purposes of transportation
          and irrigation, and become enriched by the facilities which these
          mountain streams offer unto us.
          This is the head-quarters of Zion, and the law shall go forth
          from Zion and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. The Lord gave
          the law through Joseph when he was here, and now he gives it
          through President Brigham Young. The law shall go forth from Zion
          unto all nations, and the word of the Lord is, "Look unto me, and
          be ye saved, all the ends of the earth; for I am God and there is
          none else." All who will not comply with this call will be
          damned. The Elders who have faithfully fulfilled their missions,
          warning all men who came within the sound of their voices, have
          identified themselves with the Savior, and with the Father, and
          with the Holy Ghost; and the Holy Ghost will abide with all such
          if they continue faithful; and herein consists the authority and
          power of every faithful servant of God in this and in all ages of
          the world.
          When a man revolts against the work of God and against the
          counsels of his servants, and will not be subject to the Holy
          Ghost which dwells in him, he commits treason against God, and
          against his authority on the earth, and neither the Father, nor
          the Son, nor the Holy Ghost will take up their abode with such a
          man, and he may bid farewell to the guidance of good angels.
          We should so live that we can have the spirit of truth
          sufficiently to judge between truth and error, between him that
          serveth God and him that serveth Him not. It is every man's right
          so to live, for a people that are informed and intelligent are
          much easier led and directed in the truth than a people that are
          untaught and ignorant. It is for the purpose of instructing the
          Saints that we need the Temple and Tabernacle erected; and thanks
          be to God that he acknowledges our labors in the small house we
          are now using for the purpose of giving endowments; and those who
          keep their covenants made in that house will reap the blessings
          promised to them; while those who look upon their endowments as a
          light thing, and trifle with the things of God, will meet with
          desolation which they cannot avoid; but in doing so they are
          deceiving themselves and will bring upon themselves sorrow and
          wretchedness, and finally destruction.
          To be a Saint is an individual work, and it is out of the power
          of God, angels, or men to make a Saint of a man who is determined
          to be a sinner. If a man will revolt against God and his
          authority on the earth, he has a right to do so, as much so as
          Lucifer had a right to turn away from his Father and God. Men are
          damned or saved by acting upon their agency, in receiving or
          rejecting the revealed truths of heaven. The majority of the
          members of this Church are the very elect of our God. There are
          some that are not so good, who care not for God, for His servant
          Brigham, for Heber, nor for the Twelve Apostles. But the day will
          come when the Lord will choose a people out of this people, upon
          whom he will bestow his choicest blessings. Think of the great
          numbers who were baptized into this Church when the Work first
          commenced in England, and how few there are who have stood to
          this day:--"many are called but few are chosen."
          Notwithstanding this sifting out of the unfaithful, the Lord has
          got a chosen people in these valleys of Utah, and He desires them
          to become self-sustaining, and fully able to control the trade
          and traffic of these mountains for their own profit and
          advancement. In view of this we wish our brethren to import their
          own merchandize, establish stores in their towns and cities, and
          trade with one another, and thus keep the wealth which we create
          among ourselves, making every effort in our power to bring about
          the redemption of Israel, and the great Work of our Father and
          God. This may be the means of destroying some through the
          deceitfulness of riches; but Jesus Christ will save all whom the
          Father hath put in his power to save, and great efforts will be
          made by the wicked one to destroy, if it were possible, the very
          elect; but as Jesus Christ hath said, "My sheep hear my voice,
          and will follow me, and a stranger they will not follow."
          All who profess to be Latter-day Saints will not be saved in the
          celestial world, for they cannot abide the celestial law, but all
          will attain to the glory which they can abide. Every righteous
          thing that we do in this mortality is a rudimental lesson in the
          celestial law of our God. Let us go to with our might mind, and
          strength to abide the celestial law, as it shall be revealed to
          us from time to time, until we can abide its fulness, that we may
          ultimately be introduced into the presence of our heavenly Father
          to dwell with him for ever more. Whatever the Prophet and
          President of the Church tells us to do that we should do, for he
          is directed by the unerring Spirit of the Almighty to counsel
          this people. We are connected with him in the Lord, and we talk
          and pray together upon all subjects concerning the progress of
          this people; and it is for him to decide, and give the law to
          Israel; and all who do not abide it must suffer the consequence
          of their disobedience; and all those who obey it will obtain the
          blessings which are promised to faithfulness and obedience.
          I desire to do right and to bring about that which is good. I
          have no other desire in my heart than to make all the acts of my
          life praise God. When I go into a ballroom I can there
          contemplate upon the things of God and praise Him in the dance.
          Virtue cleaveth to virtue, and light to light, and if we receive
          them they will have a place in us. I shall, the Lord being my
          helper, try to be a Saint and live my religion. I have come to
          this Conference with a determination to hear the word of God and
          be a Saint. We are blessed of the Lord now more than all the
          people upon the face of the earth, and we ought to be faithful to
          His commandments every moment of our lives, for we owe all we
          have and are to His beneficent bounty, and all should be devoted
          to His interest, or in other words, to our own interests by
          devoting all to the building up of His kingdom.
          No man has a right to commit sin, nor to intrude upon the rights
          of his neighbor. It is our privilege to do right, to serve God
          and keep his commandments, and follow faithfully the counsels of
          President Brigham Young in all things The world is mad at what
          they call the one-manpower, but they need not find fault with the
          "Mormons" for this, when the same thing is so faithfully upheld
          almost everywhere. For instance, the General Government sends a
          Governor to the Territory of Utah; the Territorial legislature
          can make laws and this one man can veto every one of them, making
          them of none effect. Brigham Young will always exercise an
          influence over this people for good, and I am going to help him,
          and the Twelve Apostles will help him, and so will all the
          faithful Saints of God in all the world. We shall prosper and God
          will bless all this people for the righteous' sake that dwell
          among them, for there is just as good a people here as ever did
          live in any part of the earth, according to their blessings and
          privileges. God has his elect here, and he is gathering them from
          the four quarters of the earth; and like a net that is cast into
          the sea, he gathers good and bad, that out of the multitude which
          he brings over the sea in ships he may gather His chosen people.
          Thirty years ago the whole Church was under condemnation because
          they had neglected the new and everlasting covenant, even the
          Book of Mormon and other revelations God had given to them, and
          they were driven by their enemies, for they were under
          condemnation at that early day of our history. How is it with us
          now? There are scores of this people who never look at those
          books. The Book of Mormon is the ensign which God has lifted up
          to the nations in the last days, and we are not justified when we
          in our feelings neglect or forsake it. I take much comfort in
          reading those books which the Lord has given us through Joseph
          Smith. The Book of Mormon was written by the Spirit and power of
          God; the man that will read it faithfully will be filled with
          light and with truth. We should hold everything in reverence that
          God has revealed in the latter-day and in former days; but that
          which is revealed for us more nearly concerns us.
          This Church and kingdom will prevail; it is the kingdom of God,
          and he will bear it off, and there is no power on earth nor in
          hell can stay it in its progress from this time henceforth and
          for ever. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / Orson
          Hyde, October 7, 1865
                             Orson Hyde, October 7, 1865
           Remarks by Elder Orson Hyde, delivered in the Bowery, in Great 
                Salt Lake City, General Conference, October 7, 1865.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          By the request and permission of my brethren, I have the pleasure
          of rising up in the midst of the Saints to say a few words to
          them this morning. I feel very thankful to the Lord our God that
          I still have a name and a place among his people, that I am
          permitted to meet with them in General Conference, to speak of
          the goodness of our Father in Heaven, and to join in worship with
          the general assembly of the Church of God. We are favored, truly,
          with fine weather; this is not only a great blessing to us, but
          it is a great blessing to our friends and brethren who are
          journeying on the plains to join us in our localities here. First
          and foremost, brethren and sisters, I will say that, on Thursday
          evening I arrived in this city from the south--from my field of
          labor. As I came near the borders of the city I came in contact
          with a very disagreeable smell, arising from the decomposition of
          some animal that had been hauled out on the outside to remove the
          nuisance from the city. When I passed a certain line I entered
          the city and beheld shady trees and fruit trees laden with fruit,
          and experienced with delight the agreeable odor from the ripening
          fruit. The contrast was as agreeable as it was great. It
          immediately occurred to my mind that our brethren who are
          crossing the plains might come in contact with dead bodies that
          had been removed from among the Saints, I mean dead as to the
          spirit life of God in them, for they must of necessity come in
          contact with these ere they could reach the city of the Saints. I
          believe that the evil things that could be said of the Saints are
          said around the borders, and those that are coming here to find a
          home have these things to encounter, that are quite disagreeable,
          and it requires of a little perseverance and faith to force their
          way through and to arrive here untarnished by the evil that meets
          them on the way. But when they can come with the Spirit of the
          Lord--with the spirit of the Saints in them--they forget all
          those disagreeable things on the borders, and their minds are
          charged with a heavenly influence, when they find themselves
          among the Saints here in peace and in truth.
          Five years ago, the 10th of last June, I left this city to bestow
          my labors in another part of the heritage of our God, in the
          county generally known as that of Sanpete. At the time I went
          there, there were six efficient settlements, the largest of which
          would not exceed 125 or 130 families. According to the ability
          which the Lord has given me, in connection with my brethren who
          have been laboring more or less with me, the industry of the
          Saints, and the blessings of the Lord, the settlements have now
          increased to fifteen in number. They advanced southward until it
          was deemed expedient and necessary in the Legislature of last
          winter to organize two new counties namely, the Sevier county and
          Piute county. The land in these counties that is susceptible of
          cultivation is mostly occupied with settlements, which, in
          several places in these new counties, are quite large.
          We have had some difficulties to encounter, and all those who are
          acquainted with the establishment of new settlements in new
          localities, are not ignorant that there is always more or less
          difficulty to contend with; especially when they are so remote
          from what may be termed headquarters, or from the sources of aid
          and succor. We have enjoyed generally, very good health; we have
          had some little sickness among children, and several have died.
          There is a good deal of ambition among our people to cultivate a
          great quantity of ground, the result of which is, that we
          cultivate our lands poorly in comparison to what we would if we
          were contented with a smaller area, and would confine our labors
          to it. We have found some difficulty with regard to water, and
          complaints have been made about a scarcity of water in many
          places when, indeed, I suppose the Lord has apportioned the water
          to the amount of land he intended should be cultivated. I do not
          think that the things are passed over unnoticed by Him without
          some kind of arrangement or calculation. He understands perfectly
          well what the elements are capable of producing, and how many of
          His people may be established here or there with profit and with
          advantage. I have labored most industriously since I have
          acquired a little experience myself, to induce my brethren to
          direct their energies upon smaller tracts of land; for I have
          noticed where men would attempt to raise a crop off forty acres
          of land that they could not get their crops in season, and
          frequently the frost came early and destroyed a great portion of
          them. This is bestowing our labor for that which does not profit.
          Now, would it not be better to confine our energies to a small
          tract of land, put in our crops in due season, have ample time to
          do it, do it well, and then it would only require on-half or
          one-third the amount of water to mature them, and they would
          mature in advance of the frost?
          I do not know how it is in other sections of the country, but I
          presume it is more or less with them like the circumstances I
          will relate. I have known men, single handed, attempt to raise
          twenty-five and thirty acres of grain, when it is more than any
          one man can well do; the result is, they find themselves troubled
          to get the water; they run from break of day until dark at night,
          wearing themselves out, and with all they can do they cannot
          bestow that attention upon their fields which they need, and they
          only get from eighteen to twenty bushels of wheat to the acre.
          When men have confined themselves to ten acres of land, having
          plowed it well the season before, all the foul weeds killed out
          and the soil left clean, the seed sown at an early day in the
          Spring, and put in in good order, I have known such fields to
          produce from forty to sixty bushels of good plump wheat to the
          acre. Besides, when fields are so cultivated, less water is used;
          the necessary labor can be performed without being hurried, and a
          plentiful harvest of golden sheaves reward the toil of the
          This season, in all probability, our crops will fall short of
          other years some thirty thousand bushels of wheat by reason of
          the early frosts. While I regret this loss, I am happy to say
          that there is plenty of good wheat in the granary, or in the
          Egypt of Utah; and I think the loss this year, through early
          frosts will aid very much in enforcing the principles which I
          have endeavored to advance namely, to confine our labors to
          smaller tracts of land and put in our crops in good time; that
          while they are growing luxuriantly and yielding bountifully,
          filling our bins with golden grain, we are not worn out with toil
          before the days allotted to us to live are expired; but we still
          have our strength, time to build comfortable houses for our
          families to live in, barns and sheds, and to prepare shelter for
          our stock.
          I find the longer we live in these valleys that the range is
          becoming more and more destitute of grass; the grass is not only
          eaten up by the great amount of stock that feed upon it, but they
          tramp it out by the very roots; and where grass once grew
          luxuriantly, there is now nothing but the desert weed and hardly
          a spear of grass is to be seen.
          Between here and the mouth o Emigration kanyon, when our
          brethren, the Pioneers, first landed here in 47, there was an
          abundance of grass over all those benches; they were covered with
          it like a meadow. There is now nothing but the desert weed, the
          sage, the rabbit-bush, and such like plants that make very poor
          feed for stock. Being cut short of our range in the way we have
          been, and accumulating stock as we are, we have nothing to feed
          them with in the winter and they perish. There is no profit in
          this, neither is it pleasing in the sight of God our Heavenly
          Father that we should continue a course of life like unto this.
          Hence, in my labors I have exerted an influence, as far as I have
          been able, to cultivate less land in grain and secure to
          ourselves meadows that we might have our hay in the time and in
          the season thereof, shades for our stock, barns, and stable for
          our horses, and good houses for our families, where they may be
          made comfortable and happy, and that we may not be everlasting
          slaves, running, as it were, after an ignus fatuus, or jack in
          the lantern, following a false light, but that we may confine
          ourselves to a proper and profitable course of life. I do say
          that a man's life consisteth not in the abundance of the things
          that he possesses, nor upon the vast amount he extends his
          jurisdiction over, but it consists in a little well cared for,
          and everything in order. When we confine ourselves and our labors
          to small tracts of land, we shall then find time to do everything
          that is necessary to be done; but if we branch out so largely in
          plowing, sowing and reaping, we have no time to make necessary
          improvements around our homes and in our cities; in fact, we have
          so much to do that we can do nothing at all.
          Now I speak of these things, my brethren, not because I think
          that they are the most edifying to you, but I speak of them
          because I consider that a temporal salvation is as important as a
          spiritual one. It is salvation in every respect that we are
          laboring to obtain, not only to make ourselves comfortable and
          happy, so far as the physical energies of the body are concerned,
          but, also, that the mind should not constantly be on the strain
          day and night. There should be a little time for relaxation and
          rest to both body and mind, that while our bodies are resting the
          mind may be fresh to plan and arrange for our personal comfort
          and how to make everything snug and tidy around us. How much more
          agreeable is life when everything is in order and good regulation
          is maintained in and around our homes and cities. This is what I
          have endeavored, in my weak way to instil into the minds of the
          Saints. In some instances I have been successful, and where men
          have adopted the course I have suggested they have invariably
          borne testimony in its favor I would rather have half a dozen
          cows in the winter, and have them well taken care of, than to
          have twenty and have fourteen of them die for want of feed and
          proper attention, which would leave me only six. I would rather
          only have the six to begin with then I would not have the
          mortification of seeing so many suffer and die. In the present
          condition of the ranges, we cannot indulge in the hope of raising
          such large herds of stock as we have done heretofore; but we have
          got to keep about what will serve us, and take care of them well;
          then we can enjoy ourselves, and we are not the authors o misery
          to any part of creation.
          We are trying to get into this way; it is a slow operation, and
          it seems that men's inordinate desire for wealth and extensive
          possessions is hard to overcome. They hate to be limited; they
          think their fields are not large enough for their strength; but
          it is a good thing to have a little strength on hand all the
          time, and not let out the very last link, because there might be
          an emergency that would really require it. If we drive a pair of
          horses all the time at their utmost speed they are soon worn out;
          and if you want to make a trip very speedily you cannot do it,
          your animals are run down, you have not husbanded their strength,
          and they are not capable of performing the journey you wish;
          whereas, if they are properly driven, judiciously fed, and their
          strength properly husbanded, when you want to make a sudden dash
          you have the power to do it. We are not unlike, in this respect,
          to other portions of the animal creation. Perhaps I have said
          enough upon this subject.
          We have had our difficulties to encounter in the south; it has
          not all sunshine and fair weather with us, but we have got along
          as well as we could. Perhaps that is saying too much, it is
          saying a good deal; I do not know that I dare say it. I look back
          frequently upon my past life and find many places that I think I
          could have bettered; but were I to live my life over again I do
          not know that I could do any differently. I will, however, let
          the past take care of itself and for the future seek to do the
          will of God and keep myself in subjection to it.
          I have no objections to men obtaining wisdom and learning from
          books whether old or new; that is all right and good enough; but
          I consider it is better to have the Spirit of God in our hearts
          that we may know the truth when we hear it; and not only know it
          when we hear it, but be capable by that Spirit of bringing forth
          things that we never heard. I feel that it is our privilege,
          brethren and sisters to have this principle dwelling within us;
          and when I see men laboring through books, ancient and modern, to
          find but little that is good, I am reminded of those who run over
          forty acres of land in a superficial manner, and only reap a
          little, when a small quantity of land, well watered and well
          cultivated, would be sure to yield a rich harvest.
          I want to speak a few words now in relation to our position. We
          look back to the days of Abraham, and we consider him to be a
          great man. Truly, he was a great man; he was among the first of
          great men in this world, according to our limited knowledge.
          There were great men before his day, but we are not so well
          acquainted with the revelations given previous to his time, nor
          with the men that lived before him, as we are with Abraham, and
          with the revelations given to him and to prophets subsequent to
          his time. The Lord called him away from the worship of idols,
          telling him to separate himself and go into a land He would show
          him. He was guided by that Spirit that always guides aright, so
          he came into the land of Canaan. The Lord told him to look
          "northward and southward, and eastward and westward; for all the
          land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed
          for ever. And I will make thy seed as the dust of the earth; so
          that if a man can number the dust of the earth, then shall thy
          seed also be numbered." The Lord promised to make him a great
          ruler, a prince, and the father of the faithful. I want to ask
          the Latter-day Saints if the field is not wide enough, and if it
          is not the good will of our Father in heaven to make Abrahams of
          every faithful man of God that lives on the earth at this
          day?--if it is not according to the loving kindness of our
          Heavenly Father to bless every faithful man of God as he blessed
          Abraham? It seems so to me. Abraham had several wives, and he had
          children. Is not the same blessing extended to us? That if
          Abraham was to be a prince and a ruler, and his posterity become
          numerous, may we not, if faithful to our God and to our
          covenants, be as Abraham? Shall there be any end to our
          posterity? May they not be as numerous as the stars in the
          firmament, and as the sands upon the sea shore? Abraham may be in
          advance of us; he lived in an earlier period; but we are
          following up in the same track. Although we may not be called
          upon to yield up an only son, as Abraham was, yet, may we not
          enjoy through faithfulness the blessings, and honors, and
          privileges that he did? I see nothing in the way of it. I believe
          it is according to the goodness, and generosity, and loving
          kindness of our Father in heaven. Now, the Jews boasted that they
          were the literal descendants of Abraham; and notwithstanding
          their unrighteousness, stubbornness of heart, blindness of mind,
          and unbelief, they considered themselves heirs to all the
          promises made unto Abraham, and a distinguished and honored
          people. Jesus came to them, and taught and instructed them, and
          would have saved them, but they would not allow him to be their
          Savior; hence he said, "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest
          the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how
          often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen
          gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not." The
          Savior began to reason with them on one occasion; they answered
          and said unto him, Abraham is our father. Jesus saith unto them,
          "If ye were Abraham's children, ye would do the works of Abraham.
          Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye
          will do; he was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in
          the truth, because there is no truth in him," etc. Now, they are
          the people to whom the promises were made, of whom it is said
          they should be remembered for ever, and that too with loving
          kindness and favor. It was understood that they would be
          chastened if they went astray but the Lord would always remember
          them on account of their fathers.
          They that are the children of Abraham do the works of Abraham.
          What did Abraham do? The Spirit of the Lord came upon him, and
          the voice of the Lord was heard by him, and when the Lord
          commanded him he obeyed; when he was commanded to offer up his
          only son, his darling Isaac, he prepared to do so. Abraham, no
          doubt, felt all the sympathies of a kind-hearted father but still
          the voice of God to him was paramount to all things else, and he
          laid his son upon the alter and was about to slay him; and while
          the knife was aimed at the life of the lad, showing that Abraham
          was fully bent to do the will of God and follow out the
          instructions given him, and angel's voice from on high said,
          Abraham spare thy son; I have tried and proved you; now I have
          the evidence that you will not withhold anything from me; there
          is a ram in the thicket, take him and offer him up instead; and
          Isaac was accepted in a figure and was saved. Abraham went on in
          obedience to the requirements of Heaven and faltered not. Now,
          then, if we will do the works of Abraham, we are the children of
          Abraham. The natural seed of Abraham rejected the offers of
          mercy, and it was said of them, "Reprobate silver shall men call
          them, because the Lord hath rejected them." Again, Paul says,
          "For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that
          circumcision, which is outward in the flesh." Their true line of
          connection with Abraham was broken because of unbelief, and
          Heaven regarded it no more. But here is a new institution, hence,
          says Jesus, except a man be born again he cannot see the kingdom
          of God, and except a man be born of water and of the Spirit he
          cannot enter into the kingdom of God. To be born again is
          necessary to be a child of Abraham--to be a child of God. We are
          to be born of water and of the Spirit. What will the Spirit do
          for us if we give place to it and allow it to act according to
          its office in our own bosoms, and oppose it not, doing nothing to
          grieve it and to paralyze its force and influence upon our
          systems? Will it not create us anew in Christ Jesus, making our
          flesh, blood, and bones anew, creating the whole creature anew,
          being born from above and sanctified unto God? It seems so to me.
          It was said to Jesus, "Behold, thy mother and thy brethren stand
          without, desiring to speak with thee." But he answered and said
          unto him who told him, "Who is my mother? and who are my
          brethren? And he stretched forth his hand toward his disciples,
          and said, Behold my mother and my brethren! For whosoever shall
          do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same is my
          brother and sister and mother." I do not know that I understand
          the exact meaning of the word sanctification, it is a very
          commonly used word; what I understand by it is, that the
          sanctifying influences of the Spirit of God is that influence
          which purges us from every thing that is worldly, selfish, and
          contrary to the mind of God: and the creature who is sanctified
          can say, "Our Father who art in heaven," because he is born from
          above. Now, the presumption is, if a child is born to me, that
          child inherits my spirit--my nature--by virtue of his birth and
          "being begotten by me." If we are, then, begotten of God and born
          of his Spirit, we inherit the qualities of the Deity himself.
          Then may we not all become Abrahams? It seems to me that the
          Almighty can furnish territory enough, room enough: for He is not
          limited: and this world and all other worlds are subject to him.
          He controls, governs, and manages them, and they are to provide
          ample room for the existence and increase of His faithful
          I do not pretend to understand the secret springs that are
          subject to the Almighty's touch, but suffice it to say that I
          know they exist, and that He can touch them aright; and that if
          we will serve Him and honor Him and keep His commandments, He
          will touch them every time in our favor. I do not feel that the
          kingdom of God is going to be overthrown, that the wicked are
          going to prevail against it. I would have great mercy upon the
          wicked, so far as they will repent and obey the Gospel; but if
          they will not repent and obey the Gospel, if they will love
          unrighteousness and practice it all the day long, they cannot be
          acknowledged as the children of God, but will be accounted
          enemies of the Most High, and will be overthrown.
          I wish to put the most charitable construction upon the purposes
          of all men. When the army was sent up to Utah under Johnston,
          their design was to overthrow the "Mormons" in these valleys; for
          they considered our religion a dangerous error, though this was
          not their manifest and avowed reason. They, however, did us no
          harm, and that great army, the flower of the United States, was
          broken to pieces and scattered hither and thither. They exhibited
          to all men and to the heavens their purpose, but God saved his
          people. What did they get for their reward? Look at the fields of
          Virginia and Tennessee. Look on the battle-fields in the South
          that have been drenched with blood; the nation has been clothed
          with mourning, sorrow, and wretchedness, and this is their reward
          for seeking to fight against God and to overthrow his kingdom. Do
          they look at it so? They do not. And they will spurn this
          testimony as they would the testimony that Joseph Smith was a
          Prophet of God, was armed with the Spirit of God, and carried
          life and death on his tongue. The nation has had a bloody war and
          a sore time of suffering, and many a heart will ache and be
          filled with sorrow after this day; it will take a long time to
          heal up the deadly wound it has inflicted upon the nation, a long
          time to cure up the sore, and while it is being cured up in one
          place, I have thought there is danger of it breaking out in
          another place. The whole organization of the nation has been
          infected with a disease that seems to be incurable: perhaps it
          may be cured, but I cannot say how this may be. Is the trouble
          ended? I do not apprehend that it is; they may cry peace and
          safety, but I do not think there is a good foundation for it. If
          they will provoke further calamities, after the severe reproof
          that has been given, further calamities will come upon them.
          It is perfectly right to look at things as they really are. Here
          is, perhaps, a million of men to be disbanded that have been
          accustomed to live not by agricultural and mechanical pursuits,
          but they have been accustomed for the last few years to live by
          destroying the fruits of the ground and the productions of
          mechanical labor; by destroying men, women, and children, and
          laying towns and cities in flames, and they have had joy in the
          work of their hands. When this multitude of men are turned loose,
          are they going to adopt their former course of industry? Some
          may, but I fear the majority of them will not; the great mass of
          them have learned to do otherwise, and they are like so many
          firebrands scattered over the land.
          When I was young I used to read about a day that should burn as
          an oven, and all the proud and they that do wickedly shall be as
          stubble. I then had an idea that a sheet of fire would come down
          from heaven and burn up the ungodly; that the sun would be
          darkened and the moon turned to blood and the stars fall from
          heaven. I look at things in another point of light now; I now
          consider that the elements, the agents of destruction, are right
          here to accomplish that work, and the revelations of God will be
          fulfilled; for God has put in their hearts to fulfil his will,
          and they shall make the whore of all the earth desolate and
          naked, and shall eat her flesh and burn her with fire. That great
          day of burning is beginning; we have had a few drops before the
          shower; it will wax worse and worse, and men will continue to
          deceive and be deceived until the earth shall be burned up. The
          word of the Lord is, "Come out from her, my people, that ye be
          not partakers of her sins and receive not of her plagues."
          In conclusion, let me say that I know this is the work of God, I
          know it to be the truth of heaven, I know that Joseph is a
          Prophet of the Most High God, and I know that he gave the mind
          and will of Heaven to the world in the days of his mortal life. I
          know that President Brigham Young is the man now chosen of God to
          guide the destinies of this people, and I say, May the Lord bless
          him, and those that are connected with him, and those that listen
          to his counsel; and may the blessing of God be upon all Israel,
          and His wrath and indignation be upon all that hate Him, in the
          name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / George
          Albert Smith, October 7, 1865
                        George Albert Smith, October 7, 1865
                              PROSPERITY OF THE SAINTS.
            Remarks made by Elder George A. Smith, in the Bowery, General
                 Conference, Great Salt Lake City, October 7, 1865.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          It is with very great pleasure that I have listened to the
          instructions and counsels of my brethren at this Conference. In
          fact, the season of Conference is a period of reflection with me.
          It is eighteen years ago yesterday when the first October
          Conference was held in this valley under the shade of a hay
          stack, and it served an abundant means of shading all that
          attended. As we are here assembled now, it would require an
          extensive hay stack to create a shade sufficient to accommodate
          the assembly, and there is but a very small representation here
          from the settlements of the Territory, though there are
          considerable numbers from some of them--trains of fifty or sixty
          wagons loaded with persons to attend Conference. Those of us who
          are in this city, and who have not had the privilege of
          travelling through the settlements, can form very little
          comprehension of the extent, strength, and population of the
          Territory, and of the amount of labor, toil, and the results of
          that toil and labor which are progressing throughout.
          President Young has devoted a large portion of his time since
          last Conference, associated with a number of Elders, in
          travelling and visiting the Saints. He has visited, perhaps,
          one-half of them, after travelling about eighteen hundred miles.
          Our Territory is said to be sparsely settled, but our location
          renders it necessary that wherever a settlement exits it shall be
          of considerable size, in order to carry out the necessary
          arrangements for protection and cultivation. It is seldom that a
          small settlement can do this successfully. I have been pleased
          with the suggestions offered by President Hyde in relation to the
          better cultivation of the soil; for when we go to the expense of
          taking out water, of keeping up dams, making requisite canals,
          repairing tunnels and smaller ditches and water sects, it would
          seem really sound policy that every foot of land thus watered, in
          order to make it effective, should be cultivated in the best
          possible manner. If the Lord had seen proper to send rains from
          heaven to water our lands sufficiently and gratuitously as in
          other places, we might spread over the land and cultivate the
          soil without so much labor on our part. If the suggestions which
          have been made are duly considered and applied throughout the
          Territory, the result will be the production of from one to three
          times more of the necessaries of life on the same area.
          So far as the unity of the people is concerned, I have felt to
          rejoice the past season; I have accompanied the President this
          summer, except when on his last trip to Cache Valley, during
          which I was on a journey to the South with Elder Amasa Lyman. We
          held twenty-four meetings. It is really an expressive and
          singular incident that we live to visit so many climates
          inhabited by Saints in so short a time. We passed near the snow
          region in July, went directly into a semi-torrid zone to see the
          effects of all the changes in this variety of climate,
          thermometer at Washington 110 in the shade, all within our own
          borders. Our settlements may be compared to a thrifty tree,
          throwing out annually a new growth more extended and more
          vigorous. While President Young and company passed on south,
          Elders F. D. Richards and A. M. Musser took another direction
          through the new counties of Sevier, Piute, and Kane, through a
          chain of new settlements never before visited, only in part, by
          some of the Twelve, visiting on their route some 600 families. It
          is really astonishing to reflect that such an extent of
          settlements have been thrown out. We have been gratified very
          much with the efforts and exertions made by our brethren who were
          sent on missions to our cotton region in opening and enlarging
          the settlements there. They have met with many difficulties of
          which their northern brethren have very little conception. The
          soil along their streams in many places is composed of such loose
          material that it is almost impossible to carry a water ditch
          through it for irrigation, the soil of the banks dissolving in
          the water like sugar in coffee; dams are washed away by frequent
          bursting of clouds. You may take the best fields in the vicinity
          of St. George, and the annual expense of keeping up their canals
          and dams for irrigation has been 15 dollars per acre, and yet the
          courage, energy, perseverance, and diligence of the brethren have
          not failed, but they continue to construct dams, and contend with
          the natural obstacles that lie in their way to the permanent
          improvement of the country. This perseverance, which will
          eventually bring forth an abundant supply of the needful staples
          which can be successfully produced in that climate, is very
          commendable; to support themselves by producing their own
          breadstuff is true political economy. Notwithstanding the number
          of mechanics sent there, they have not sufficient to supply the
          wants of the people. There are many towns without a blacksmith,
          plasterer, mason, or carpenter. A considerable number of these
          could find employment and make themselves good homes in many of
          the southern settlements. We would direct the minds of the
          brethren to this item.
          There is much land that can be cultivated in wheat with flood
          water that cannot be made to produce cotton, in consequence of
          drouth later in the season. The raising of bread this year has
          not interfered to any great extent with the culture of cotton,
          the supply of which has been greater than last year; and
          two-thirds of breadstuff necessary has been produced to supply
          the inhabitants, the other third must be brought from the north.
          Many vineyards have come into bearing, and extensive new
          vineyards have been planted, and the efforts at cultivating more
          breadstuffs have proven successful; and if the brethren continue
          their efforts an ample supply will be produced for home
          consumption without materially lessening the breadth cultivated
          in cotton and vines. While my brethren are contending with these
          obstacles I sympathize with them, and rejoice when I see them
          victorious. As I passed through the mineral lots in St. George I
          saw their barren aspect, and saw the men working on them to
          conquer those combined chemical elements which eat up everything
          that grows, and though the rocks and fences of sandstones were
          dissolving before them, yet men are conquering this soil and
          making it produce. Nearly three-fourths of all the fruit trees
          planted in St. George have been unsuccessful, yet the place is
          looking like the Garden of Eden, showing that perseverance,
          faith, and energy will conquer everything. It is a delightful and
          pleasant locality. I name these things because we are interested
          in them, and wish the brethren to realize that those brethren on
          that mission have spent the accumulated property of many years,
          and many of them are successful; some are yet struggling to make
          a start, and it is with them as the old adage has it, while the
          grass grows the cow starves; but they are not discouraged; their
          eyes look bright their spirit is determined, and I was pleased to
          hear Elder Snow speak of the good spirit they felt, and that they
          were determined to overcome. A people possessed of such great
          energy aided by the ready co-operation of their brethren in the
          north, are bound to conquer that desert and not only make it
          blossom as the rose, but make one of the most delightful regions
          of the earth. I would suggest to all persons who go there to
          fulfil what is required of them, and not forget that it is
          necessary to carry the staff of life with them, that those that
          are there, and those that are going, may be provided with ample
          supplies of bread; it is better to have a little over when the
          next harvest comes than to go two or three weeks without bread.
          May the blessings of God be upon Zion, and may her cords be
          lengthened and her stakes strengthened, that she may be blessed
          continually with that wisdom, knowledge, and intelligence that
          guide the head and inspire the body. We are improving in
          everything; we must continue to improve until the light of life
          shines throughout the whole earth; for our business is to be like
          a city set upon a hill, or a candle set upon a table, to
          illuminate the earth, and bring all to a knowledge of the truth,
          life, and peace. May God enable us to be so is my prayer, in the
          name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / John
          Taylor, October 7, 1865
                            John Taylor, October 7, 1865
                        REVELATION FROM GOD, TRUE KNOWLEDGE.
          Remarks by Elder John Taylor, delivered in the Bowery, Great Salt
                   Lake City, General Conference, October 7, 1865.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          It is good to meet together as we are met on the present
          occasion. It is good to speak on the goodness of God, and it is
          pleasant and instructive to hear; we enjoy a privilege that is
          not possessed by any of the inhabitants of the earth except
          ourselves; it is a privilege which, when properly understood by
          the Saints, they will esteem to be greater than any other earthly
          blessing that can be bestowed upon them. We assemble together in
          a different capacity from that of any other people; we meet here
          as the representatives of God upon the earth. Yet occupying the
          high position that we do, blessed as we are with the light of
          truth, with the Holy Priesthood, with the fullness of the
          everlasting Gospel; in possession of light and intelligence that
          is not imparted unto others, but of which they are ignorant, we
          stand emphatically as God's elect, as His representatives on the
          earth; at the same time, there is mixed up with us a great amount
          of weakness, infirmities, and follies, and we need continually
          the aid, teaching, and protection of the Almighty God to govern,
          guide, lead, and direct us in the right path.
          As I before stated, we stand in a different position to the
          Almighty and to the world from that of any other people. To us
          God has revealed his will; He has opened the heavens to us; among
          us He has organized the Holy Priesthood, and revealed those
          principles which exist in the eternal world; of us He has made
          messengers of life and salvation, to us He has communicated his
          law, and from us He expects obedience and a ready co-operation
          with Him in bringing to pass those great events that must
          transpire in the building up and establishment of the kingdom of
          God in the last days. The Lord is anxious to do us good, to
          enlighten our minds, to inform our judgment, to unfold unto us
          His will, and to strengthen us and prepare us for the great
          events that must transpire in these last days. He is desirous to
          show us how to save ourselves, how to bless ourselves, temporally
          and spiritually, intellectually, morally, physically, politically
          and in every possible way that He is capable of bestowing his
          blessings upon fallen humanity. He is desirous to perform a great
          work upon the earth, to bring a bout a great revolution among
          men; to establish correct principles of every kind, and to make
          the earth and the inhabitants thereof fulfil the measure of their
          creation, and prepare all that are capable or worthy to receive
          everlasting life and exaltation in the celestial kingdom where he
          dwells. He is desirous of making use of us as his instruments in
          the development of this great work in which He has engaged.
          We have been in the habit of reading the words of the prophets in
          relation to the establishment of the kingdom of God, and what
          they have said, and the Spirit by which they were inspired. We
          have reflected a good deal upon what the Lord would do in
          relation to establishing correct principles upon the earth in the
          last days. We have read about these things, and we have believed
          them in part; and as the Spirit of God has beamed upon our minds,
          latterly we have been enabled to comprehend more fully some of
          the things that the prophets in ancient times wrote about, but of
          which they understood very little and we can only understand them
          as we are taught; we can only comprehend the designs of God as he
          reveals them to us; we can only understand our duty as the Spirit
          of God makes it manifest, either through the Elders of Israel or
          by the revelations of God to ourselves, or both.
          It is in vain for the Elders of Israel to teach the principles of
          truth unless the people are prepared to receive them; and it is
          vain for the Lord to communicate his will unto the people unless
          the people possess a portion of his Spirit to comprehend
          something of that will and the designs of God towards them, and
          towards the earth upon which they dwell. Nor can the Lord work
          with them unless they are prepared to co-operate with him in the
          establishment of his kingdom upon the earth.
          There are a great many things of which we speak that seem to be
          very simple, and very unnecessary, in the estimation of some, for
          us to talk about. We have herd in this Conference reports from
          different parts of the Territory about their crops, about the way
          the land is cultivated about the kind of improvements the people
          are making, about the prospects that lie before them for
          sustaining themselves with all the common necessaries of life
          etc. And some people think that we might when we convene together
          talk about something else--about something which they would
          designate as being more spiritual. We meet together as men of
          intelligence, as men possessing natural wants, who have natural
          bodies, which bodies have to be clothed, to be fed and provided
          for; we meet together as rational individuals and as heads of
          families, who have children growing up that need, in the first
          place to be instructed in the common laws of life, and in those
          things that are necessary to promote our common well-being. The
          first thing that devolves upon all human beings, so far as I can
          comprehend it is to provide a way for their own sustenance. One
          of the very first commandments that God gave to Adam was, when He
          placed him in the garden, He told him to dress or till it, so
          that he might be able to provide for his necessities. The fiat of
          the Almighty, at the time when Adam was expelled from the Garden
          of Eden was to him, "In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat
          bread;" that we cannot avoid. By this inscrutable law we are
          compelled to attend to some of the first necessary affairs of
          life or to go without bread and necessarily die. Consequently,
          when we talk about land and possessions, an inheritance, etc., we
          talk about things that are some of the first necessaries
          pertaining to human existence. We live by breathing the air that
          God gives us, by drinking the water that He causes to flow for
          our sustenance, and by cultivating the earth in order that we may
          partake of the products of the earth. This is one of the first
          duties pertaining to man, and hence when we meet together to form
          new settlement as part of the body politic--as part of the
          kingdom of God, it devolves upon all of us always to ascertain
          how we can sustain ourselves in the position in which we are
          placed. Hence, when we hear of any difficulties, such as we have
          heard of in the south at various times, and from other sources,
          pertaining to the existence of man, it causes a thrill of feeling
          to go through the whole of the people that form part of the
          kingdom of God; for if one member of the body suffers they all
          suffer with it; and if one member of the body rejoices the rest
          rejoice with it. When we hear from the south as at the present
          time, that they are raising their bread, and that there is every
          reasonable prospect of them being enabled to sustain themselves,
          we feel comforted by the report. When we hear from the north of
          the destruction made by the early frosts and yet, notwithstanding
          this disaster of the prospects that lie before them, and the
          encouragement that they hold out to us of the prosperity of their
          settlements there, and that they will be able to provide for
          themselves, we feel comforted thereby and feel thankful to the
          God of Israel that He is providing for and taking care of his
                 We believe that the kingdom of God is a temporal
          kingdom as well as a spiritual and eternal kingdom, to use this
          expression according to our comprehension; and when men are
          deprived of the common necessaries of life, and have not
          wherewith to sustain themselves, they have but very little time
          to attend to religious matters, and they cannot be of much
          benefit to their brethren in helping to establish the kingdom of
          God upon the earth. But when, on the other hand, we see that the
          Saints are blessed in the north, in the south, in the east, and
          in the west; when we see them industrious, persevering, diligent,
          and using all lawful measures to provide for themselves, and
          their families, and those that depend upon them; and when we see
          them cultivating the Spirit of God in them and living their
          religion, cleaving close to the Almighty and drawing blessings
          from his hand, then we acknowledge the hand of God in all things,
          and feel to bless the name of the God of Israel. Every one of
          these things is of great importance to the Saints of God, and we
          feel interested in all these matters. Are they prospering in the
          south? We acknowledge the hand of God in it. Is the climate
          tempered in the north? We acknowledge the hand of God in it. Do
          the rains descend upon our parched land and cause it to bring
          forth luxuriantly? We acknowledge the hand of God in it; and so
          we do in everything that we see, and in everything that we have
          to do with; for we read "that the wrath of the Almighty is
          kindled against none but those who do not acknowledge his hand in
          all things."
          We are gathered together here as a peculiar people; we differ, as
          I stated before, in almost every respect from the world of
          mankind with which we are surrounded. The Lord gives to them
          seed-time and harvest, summer and winter, and pours the rich
          blessings of heaven into their laps; He gives them mechanical
          talent and ingenuity; He inspires them with a knowledge of the
          arts and sciences; He has been pouring upon them the rich
          blessings of intelligence and of plenty for ages, but they do not
          acknowledge his hand. Men boast of their own intelligence, of
          their own wisdom, of their own power, might, and
          understanding--this is a general rule, with but few exceptions.
          They feel a good deal like the king of Babylon did when in his
          pride he rose up and said, "Is not this great Babylon that I have
          built? have I not done these things by my wisdom, by my
          intelligence, by my power and might?" With us it is different. We
          are indebted to God for the first rays of light and intelligence
          that ever beamed upon us. Who among us knew the first principles
          of the Gospel of Christ until we heard them from the Elders of
          Israel? There is not a man among us that did; there is not a man
          in existence to-day that knows them, only as they have been
          communicated to him from God. Who told us that it was right to be
          baptized in the name of Jesus for the remission of sins? Who
          taught us it was right to receive the Holy Ghost by the laying on
          of hands? Who taught us that it was right that there should be an
          authority given by God to man to enable him to officiate legally
          in His name, and that everything in the shape of religion upon
          the earth was spurious and not of Him? It was communicated to
          Joseph Smith by the opening of the heavens, by the ministering of
          Holy Angels, and by the voice of God. Until that voice was heard,
          until these communications were made known, the inhabitants of
          the world were wrapped in ignorance; they knew nothing about God
          nor the principles of eternity, nor the way to save themselves
          nor anybody else. 
          We have nothing to boast of in this particular. I do not speak of
          these things by way of boasting, but I speak of them to
          acknowledge the hand and mercy of God towards us as a people.
          What would a man give in exchange for his soul? We are told that
          a man will give all he hath for his life; what will he give,
          then, in exchange for his soul, or has he anything to barter for
          it? What is it that hath loosed us from the shackles of
          ignorance, error, superstition, and folly with which we were
          bound? It is the light of heaven, the revelations of God, the
          ministration of the Holy Priesthood that has imparted to us
          intelligence in relation to these things; without this it is
          impossible that we could follow anything in relation to them. Who
          is there in the world that understands anything of God, or his
          will? They cannot be found; they know nothing of Him. It would be
          needless to talk about the folly of many of their priests, and
          their ideas and notions in relation to these matters. What do
          they know of God? They tell us he is a spirit. What else? That He
          is without "body, parts, and passions." Some tell us that He sits
          on the top of a topless throne, etc. It is not necessary to enter
          into these matters; we know them, and we do not wish, at the
          present time, to reflect upon them. I am simply reflecting upon
          my own ignorance as one of them. When I was among them I was a
          teacher, and what did I know? Simply nothing. I knew nothing of
          God, of the principles of eternal truth and life, and I could not
          find anybody anywhere that knew any more than I did. I am
          indebted to "Mormonism," to the light of truth, to the
          revelations of God, to the administrations of the Holy
          Priesthood, for all the knowledge, and light, and intelligence
          that I may possess in relation to these matters; and this is the
          case with all of us; we were all unacquainted with God, with the
          Holy Priesthood, and with the way to obtain eternal life; and the
          same ignorance that beclouded our minds, previous to the opening
          of the heavens to Joseph Smith and the coming forth of the
          fulness of the Gospel through him, beclouds the rest of the world
          at the present time. They know not where they are going to, nor
          where they came from. I used to ask myself sometimes questions
          like the following:--Who am I? Where did I come from? What am I
          doing here? What is the object of my existence? Who organized the
          world, and for what purpose was it organized? Could I answer
          them? No; and nobody else could answer them for me; for they know
          nothing about thee things,--neither priest, nor philosopher, nor
          statesman, nor any man that I could associate with, could unravel
          these questions; they could not tell the whys and the wherefores
          in relation to some of these simple things that have been given
          to us.
          The Gospel, we are told in one place, is "the law of the spirit
          of life in Christ Jesus," and "it hath made us free from the law
          of sin and death." We are told in another place that it is "good
          news and glad tidings;" but, if we comprehend it correctly, the
          Gospel holds the keys, through the Priesthood, of the mysteries
          of God; the Gospel "brings life and immortality to light;" and
          wherever it exists, in whatsoever bosom it dwells, whoever has
          engaged in the propagation of the Gospel, has a knowledge of life
          and immortality; it is that which unveils the heavens, and
          without it men are ignorant in relation to the future, and of
          that salvation of which they talk so much. The Gospel places men
          in communication with the Lord, so that they can understand
          something of God, and something of His law, and without the
          Gospel they cannot understand anything about Him; and hence some
          will think one thing about Him and some another. Whoever has
          possessed the Gospel, whether in former or in latter times, it
          has brought life and immortality to light to them; it shows men
          who they are and what they are; it shows them something about
          God; and it was said in former times that, this is life eternal
          to know God, and Jesus Christ whom he hath sent. Without the
          Gospel it would be impossible for men to have any knowledge of
          God, or of Jesus Christ whom he hath sent. Hence, when Jesus
          asked the question of his disciples, "Whom do men say that I, the
          Son of Man, am?" they answered him, "Some say thou art Elias, and
          some say thou art Moses, and some that thou art one of the
          prophets risen from the dead." "But whom say ye that I am?" Peter
          answered, "Thou art the Son of the Living God." Jesus said unto
          him, "Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona, for flesh and blood hath
          not revealed this unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven;
          and thou art Peter, and upon this rock will I build my church and
          the gates of hell shall not prevail against it."
          How did Peter know that He was the Christ? He knew it by
          revelation; he had the Gospel, and the Gospel brings life and
          immortality to light, and reveals unto the human family the
          existence of a God and their relationship to him. We are indebted
          to God for light, for the intelligence we enjoy, for the
          knowledge of the Gospel that is placed within our reach.
          Now let us proceed a little further in relation to these matters.
          God is desirous of benefiting us, and for this reason he has
          revealed unto us his will; for this reason he has opened the
          heavens and communicated with us. God is desirous of establishing
          his law, his authority his kingdom, his dominion among men. He is
          desirous to be obeyed by the human family and to have them submit
          to his teachings to his guidance, and to his direction. He is
          desirous of establishing correct principles among mankind that
          will do them good, that will bless them, that will exalt them,
          that will prepare them to fulfil their destiny upon the earth,
          and the first step that he has taken is to impart unto them,
          through obedience to the principles of the Gospel of Christ, the
          Holy Ghost, and only through that can they comprehend God or his
          laws. "Except a man be born again he cannot see the kingdom of
          God; and except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he
          cannot enter into the kingdom of God." We sometimes feel a little
          indignant at the actions of men around us; we think that they act
          strangely and so they do. We think that they are very full of
          prejudice, and so they are; we think that they are very wicked
          and show a very malignant spirit toward us, and are desirous to
          injure us, and we have often been astonished at this when we have
          been abroad in the world; we have seen very honorable,
          high-minded men and women that fear God and work righteousness,
          and yet there is an array of prejudice and persecution against
          them that would almost astonish us. What is the matter? They do
          not see things as we see them; there is a thick veil over them;
          they are something like the people that Jesus spoke about in his
          day when he prayed, "Father, forgive them, for they know not what
          they do." They know not the light and intelligence of the Holy
          Ghost, and, consequently, they do not understand our position,
          and they are led by other influences they know nothing about.
          They do not see the kingdom of God, nor can they. I do not care
          what their wisdom is, nor their intelligence; I do not care what
          school they were taught in, or who was their teacher; I care
          nothing about the extent of their capacity, reading, or
          intelligence acquired or possessed; unless they have possessed
          the Spirit of the living God, they cannot comprehend the affairs
          pertaining to the kingdom of God. Well, but are there not many
          very honorable and high-minded men in the world that are not
          Latter-day Saints? Yes; but they do not see the kingdom of God
          any more than Nicodemus did when he came to Jesus by night. We
          stand upon a different platform from what they do, and we have to
          make many allowances for their conduct and actions towards us.
          They do not understand our designs, nor what we are after. Why
          are we gathered together? Because God has called us and we are
          willing to obey him; because God sent a message to the nations of
          the earth, and we possessed a portion of the Spirit of God; and
          when the Elders of Israel came forth to teach us the words of
          life, as Jesus Says, "My sheep hear my voice, and they know me,"
          etc, the word of life was sown broadcast among thousands, and
          millions of the human family arose and believed it at first, as
          much as you and I did; but the cares of the world, and the
          deceitfulness of riches, and the influences with which they were
          surrounded choked the precious seed, and it could not bring forth
          fruit. These influences, more or less to the present time, prey
          upon our minds and darken and benumb our feelings and interpose
          between us and our Heavenly Father.
          What is it that we are aiming at, and who are we seeking to
          injure in the world? Who have been injured by us? There is no man
          living who can speak the truth and say he has been injured by
          this people. He does not exist; and whenever they make statements
          of that kind, you may brand them as liars. Who have we interfered
          with? What people have we deprived of their rights? Among whom
          have we sown the seeds of sedition or injury of any kind? Have we
          gone to the North or South and interfered with any of the
          Territories or States surrounding us? No man that tells the truth
          can say so, for we have never done it; we have no need to do it;
          it is not in our hearts to do it; we cannot do it while we live
          our religion. The Lord is trying to teach us if he can, and we
          are trying to teach each other, if we can; so that we may be
          elevated and exalted in the scale of intelligence, morality
          virtue, honesty, and truth; and with regard to anything and
          everything that tends to exalt and ennoble the human mind. This
          is what we are after, and what the Lord is desirous to make of
          We emanated from Him; we are His children, and not only His
          children temporally and spiritually, but we are united to Him by
          covenant to serve Him; we have covenanted to serve Him in
          baptism; we have covenanted to serve Him in our endowments, to
          keep His commandments, and walk according to the laws of life.
          The Lord is desirous to root out error from among us--from me,
          and from you, and from all of us; to tear away error, and
          superstition, and vice, and vanity and folly, and pride, and evil
          of every kind; to show us the beauty of holiness, the excellency
          of truth; to show us every principle that is calculated to build
          us up, and bless us with life and health and our posterity after
          us, worlds without end.
          And what does the Gospel show us? It shows us who our Father is;
          it shows us our relationship to Him, and to our earthly father;
          it shows us our duty towards our children, our duty towards our
          wives, and wives their duty towards their husbands; it enters
          into all the ramifications of human existence.
          As God is our Father, and the organizer of these bodies, and of
          this earth on which we live, He wants to teach us all, principles
          that will be calculated to exalt us and exalt the earth on which
          we live. If anybody has any fault to find with us in any part of
          the world, it is that we seek to fear God and work the works of
          righteousness; and if we cannot be swayed from the principles of
          truth by any power under heaven, our society is ignored.
          How often has it been told us, "Gentlemen, if you would only lay
          aside your religion and become like us, and live as we do, then
          we will all be good neighbors together." How often have we had to
          listen to such stuff and nonsense; like them, serve the devil,
          commit iniquity, go down to darkness and the shades of death, and
          live and die without God and without hope in the world, as they
          would have us to do, and die and be damned. God forbid, we will
          not do it. (Amen.) Our desire is to serve God; we know the ways
          of life, for God has taught them to us. We know in whom we have
          believed, for God has revealed it to us. We know the Gospel is
          true, because the Gospel has made manifest itself to us, and we
          feel satisfied with regard to the course we are taking, and God
          being our helper, we will pursue it to the end. God is our
          friend, and we are the friends of God.
          It was said this morning that we might all be Abrahams. Abraham
          was the friend of God; we are the friends of God, and if we are
          not his friends, he cannot find them on the earth; if we are not
          his friends, he cannot find friends who dare do as we do--who
          dare cleave to the truth in the midst of shame, obloquy,
          persecution, and reproach. But we till live, and the truth still
          lives, and the kingdom of God still exists; and when the kingdoms
          of the world crumble to pieces and "become like the chaff of the
          summer threshing-floor, and no place found for them," we shall
          still live; for we have within us the seeds of eternal life, and
          no man can take them from us.
          We have begun to live for ever, and feel to rejoice and be glad
          under all circumstances, and to sing "Hallelujah, for the Lord
          God Omnipotent reigneth, and will reign until he hath put all
          enemies under his feet." We are striving to help God to do that
          which he desires to do; and what is that? It is to benefit
          How often have we heard President Young, President Kimball, and
          others say to the people, "Why not go to work and plant orchards
          it is a very little thing to talk about; why will you not make
          good fences, and make good gardens, and build good, comfortable
          houses, and try to make yourselves happy and comfortable." We now
          see the fruits of these things and we begin to eat the fruits of
          our obedience to those instructions and to realize the benefit of
          them: our fields teem with plenty, our peach trees, and apple
          trees, and plum trees are laden down with fruit, and we possess
          the good things of this earth in abundance. Is there any harm in
          all this? We are taught, also, to love one another; there is
          nothing bad about that. Husbands are taught to love their wives,
          and wives are taught to love their husbands, and children to obey
          their parents; these are good principles, and they have been
          taught to us all the day long. We have been taught to pay our
          tithing, that we might acknowledge to God that we are his people,
          and that if he gave us all we ask, we might give one-tenth back
          to him, and by that act acknowledge his hand. Does the Lord care
          about these things? No. Yes. No. Yes. Yes. No. He does not care
          about them, so far as they benefit Him, but He does, so far as
          they develop perfection in the Saints of God, and show that they
          acknowledge his hand as the author and the giver of every
          blessing they enjoy. One of the prophets says, "The gold and the
          silver are His, and the cattle upon a thousand hills." If you
          want gold, you will have to go a little further away from here.
          People think it is strange that the "Mormons" do not develop the
          gold in these mountains; but those who understand the mind of
          God, understand that he has a protecting care over his people,
          and that we are in his hands, and that he will sustain us. 
          That we do not develop the gold in these mountains is not strange
          to the Saints of God. He has wisely planned for our sakes in a
          thousand ways. We can remember the time when we could not raise
          peaches to eat, and it was a doubt whether an apple tree would
          grow or not. Now go and look at your orchards; there is not a
          better peach growing country in the world than this. How is this?
          God has blessed the elements for our sakes, and also the earth;
          but let the Saints leave this place, and it would return again to
          its wilderness condition; the wicked could not live here; they
          could not live here before we came, and they could not if we went
          away; consequently, if any of them think that they could by any
          means or stratagem drive us away to possess themselves of our
          property, it would not do them one particle of good if they got
          it, for God blessed it for our sakes. He blesses the land for our
          It is hard sometimes to realize this. What does the Lord say to
          ancient Israel in one place? "Wherefore it shall come to pass, if
          ye hearken to these judgments, and keep and do them, that the
          Lord thy God shall keep with thee, the covenant and the mercy
          which He sware unto thy fathers: and He will love thee, and bless
          thee, and multiply thee; He will also bless the fruit of thy
          womb, and the fruit of thy land, thy corn, and thy wine, and
          thine oil, the increase of thy kine, and the flocks of thy sheep,
          in the land which He sware to thy fathers to give thee. Thou
          shalt be blessed above all people; there shall not be male or
          female barren among you, or among your cattle." "The Lord shall
          cause thine enemies that rise up against thee to be smitten
          before thy face; they shall come out against thee one way, and
          flee before thee seven ways." Then the curses are enumerated that
          should come upon them if they forsook the Lord their God and
          observed not his statutes. While the children of Israel obeyed
          the Lord their God the land abounded in wine, corn, and oil, and
          they vanquished their enemies. When they departed from God and
          disobeyed his laws, those calamities which were promised them
          through disobedience fell upon them to the very letter even to
          this day. Their temple was destroyed, and not one stone left upon
          another, as the Savior told, and the ground upon which it stood
          was plowed up by the Romans in search for gold which they
          expected to find there.
          It is sometimes hard for us to realize that we are in the hands
          of God, and that he controls, and manages, and guides our
          affairs. This is the thing we wish to understand, and wish the
          people to understand that our confidence is in Him. People talk
          sometimes about what they are going to do with the "Mormons," and
          the rumor flies that we are going to be rooted out, destroyed,
          and overthrown. We shall, when God says so, and not before. The
          Lord knew in former times how to put a hook into the jaws of the
          enemies of Israel, and he knows just as well where to place it
          to-day. The nation in which we live and all nations are in the
          hands of God; and so are we, and our enemies cannot help
          themselves nor avert the destiny that awaits them. He will
          accomplish his purposes towards them, and they cannot help it,
          and towards us, and they cannot help it. Then we are all in the
          hands of God, like clay in the hands of the potter, to be
          moulded, and trained, and fashioned according to the designs of
          God and according to his will.
          As it regards any of those outside influences, we need not fear
          in relation to them; we need not fear anything they can say and
          do, for they can do nothing but what God permits. He will let
          them wander about on Hams Fork, and live on mule flesh for a
          while; and they were a little independent about things and would
          not take a little salt when we sent it to them; did they harm us?
          did they destroy us? No. Why? Because God would not let them. He
          controlled them, and He now controls and governs kings, and
          rulers, and magistrates, and generals, and officers, and
          authorities, though they may not know it; but He says unto them,
          as He said to the waves of Jordan, "Hitherto shalt thou go and no
          further, and here shall thy proud waves be stayed."
          We are in the hands of God, and we are trying to do the things
          God requires of us to do, and that is, to establish his kingdom
          and his laws--his government. Where do we get the laws of God
          from? We get them by revelation through the medium He has
          appointed; and if we keep these laws, the blessing o God will be
          with us, His Spirit will attend us, He will bless us in all our
          endeavors, and we shall bring to pass the great designs of the
          Almighty that have been spoken of by the Holy Prophets. It is for
          us to keep the commandments of God, whether they refer to
          temporal or to spiritual things; whether they relate to this
          world or to the world to come. We should seek to know God and
          cleave unto him, carry out all his purposes, and he will lead us
          in the paths of life.
          I am glad that the Spirit of the Lord rests upon the President
          and people at this Conference. We are here to talk about these
          things, to preach, and sing, and pray, and commune with one
          another and with the Lord, and to try to get full of the Spirit
          of light, that we may go from this Conference and communicate it
          to others.
          May God help us to do his will and keep his commandments, in the
          name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / George
          Q. Cannon, October 8, 1865
                          George Q. Cannon, October 8, 1865
                                RICHES OF THE GOSPEL.
           Remarks made by Elder George Q. Cannon, in the Bowery, General
                 Conference, Great Salt Lake City, October 8, 1865.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          I appreciate very highly the privilege that I have this morning,
          and that I have had during this Conference, in meeting with the
          Saints; it is the first Fall Conference I have had the
          opportunity of attending for sixteen years. These are, indeed,
          precious privileges which God, our Heavenly Father, has given
          unto us; these opportunities which we now have of assembling
          ourselves together and dismissing the cares that press us from
          week to week and month to month, casting them aside to
          concentrate our minds and our thoughts upon the things of His
          kingdom, devoting our attention to those heavenly principles
          which have produced so much happiness and peace in our midst. It
          is good for us to thus devote a portion of our time to the
          worship of our God. I do not know how the Conference felt; but,
          for myself, after the vote was taken yesterday to continue our
          Conference a week or a month if it were necessary, or as long as
          the servants of God should feel inclined to continue it, I
          experienced a great relief in my feelings; I felt that that
          restraint was removed which had, to a certain extent, oppressed
          us, with the view of hurrying through the business and getting
          done by this evening. I thought that it was right, and I felt a
          spirit of freedom that I had not experienced before, and I
          presume that all the Saints felt alike on this subject. There is
          nothing more important for us to attend to than that which we are
          engaged in to-day. We cannot think of anything that is of greater
          importance to us, as individuals and as a people, than this
          service. It is a delightful work--a labor of love that our
          Heavenly Father has guaranteed unto us the privilege of
          performing. The organization that we now behold, the wonderful
          fruits and results which have attended us from the beginning, and
          that are so delightful to contemplate to-day, have all sprung
          from the service that we are now engaged in. We may devote time,
          as it is necessary we should, to the labors of this life--to
          plowing, to sowing, to harvesting, to building settlements, to
          accomplishing the labors that devolve upon us of a temporal
          character; these labors are important and necessary, but they are
          no more necessary than those that we are now engaged in; they are
          no more necessary than that we should assemble ourselves together
          frequently to listen to the word of God, to be instructed in the
          principles of life and salvation by those who have been our
          fathers in the Gospel.
          It is necessary that we should examine ourselves, bring ourselves
          to the light of truth, to learn whether we are taking the right
          course: like the mariner, when he returns to port, he compares
          his ship chronometers with the correct time on shore, to see
          whether they have been keeping true time and are in good
          condition to enter upon another voyage to enable him to obtain
          his bearings correctly, that he may not lose himself when he is
          on the trackless ocean. We can come to Conference in this manner
          and examine ourselves like men returning from a mission after an
          absence of years among the nations. They come back desirous of
          comparing themselves with their brethren in Zion, saying, like
          Paul of old, that they have indeed not run in vain; ascertaining
          for themselves that the Spirit that they have been possessed of,
          and the course that they have taken, are the Spirit and course
          that their brethren in Zion have been possessed of and taken.
          There is a great deal of profit to be derived from association of
          this character. It is necessary that we should be brought very
          frequently to a sense of our condition, of our dependence upon
          God, of our relationship to him, of the obligations that rest
          upon us as his children, and servants, and handmaidens. We cannot
          do this as we should when we neglect opportunities like this;
          but, when we come together and our hearts are filled with prayers
          and anxious desire before God for his Holy Spirit to be poured
          out upon us we then can see if we have erred, if we have gone
          astray if we have done anything wrong and displeasing in the
          sight of our Father. These things are brought to our minds, and
          we see ourselves in the light of the Holy Spirit, we renew our
          strength before the Lord, and our determinations to go forth and
          serve him with greater diligence and faithfulness in the future
          than we have done in the past.
          There is a mine of wealth in the Gospel of Jesus Christ that is
          yet comparatively undiscovered by us. We see the world around us
          digging here and there, and wandering over valleys and mountains
          in search of hidden treasures; they spend their days and nights
          in searching for those things and in planning by what means they
          can obtain them; but we have, in the Gospel of the Lord Jesus
          Christ which has been revealed unto us, an inexhaustible mine of
          wealth that is eternal. There is room for us to continually
          exercise every faculty of our minds and of our bodies in
          searching out the deep and inexhaustible riches of the Gospel of
          Jesus Christ which has been committed unto us. We have already
          partaken to some extent of this wealth; we already have realized
          to some extent its richness, its abundance; and what we have
          already obtained of it should be an incentive to us to be still
          more diligent and persevering in seeking with earnestness and
          faith unto God to give unto us of his power, and more and more of
          his Spirit, and of that wealth which He alone possesses, that we
          may go on increasing in eternal riches on earth to be prepared to
          enjoy them throughout eternity. That man is truly rich whatever
          his worldly circumstances may be, who improves the opportunities
          he has, and who seeks with all diligence to obtain all the
          blessings that pertain unto the holy religion of our Lord and
          Savior Jesus Christ. There are those, however, whom I have met
          with who profess to be good Latter-day Saints, who seem to be
          satisfied with the profession of their religion, who seem to be
          satisfied with the fact that what is called "Mormonism" is
          superior to everything else that is taught among men. I presume
          they are of that class of whom President Young has spoken--men
          who have been compelled to bow in submission to the truth because
          they could not contradict nor gainsay it; and that they have
          become connected with this system has seemed to be enough for
          them; but is it enough?
          In one sense it ought to be enough for us to know that we have
          received the truth and be satisfied with it, yet we should
          continue to seek with energy and with faith to partake of those
          blessings and of that power which our Father and God has to
          bestow upon us. If we would seek to be possessed of these things
          with the same diligence the world seeks for earthly riches, there
          is not a soul within the sound of my voice but what will be
          refreshed, filled, and satisfied with the blessings God will
          bestow upon him or upon her. It is a characteristic of the Gospel
          of Jesus Christ to not be easily exhausted; on the contrary, it
          is always attractive. You hear it to-day, as you heard it thirty
          years or thirty-five years ago, and it possesses as many charms
          and as many attractions now as then; repeating it does not wear
          it out--does not make the subject threadbare--does not deprive it
          of its interest; but, on the contrary, its interest increases as
          years roll over our heads; as they pass by our interest in the
          work of God, and our love for it, and our appreciation of its
          greatness, increase. In this respect it differs from everything
          else we know of; it satisfies every want of man's nature. Is
          there a want you can think of, is there anything, in fact,
          connected with man's existence here, spiritual or temporal,
          mental or physical, that the Gospel of Jesus Christ does not
          satisfy? If there is, I have failed to discover it. It
          comprehends everything; it gives light and it gives intelligence,
          it gives wisdom upon every department of human life, it satisfies
          every longing desire of the soul. 
          Before the Gospel reached you, my brethren and sisters who have
          received it since you were of mature years, there were wants that
          existed which now no longer exist; there were longing desires
          which you indulged in and which were ungratified by that which
          you could obtain from the world, that are to-day gratified to
          their fullest extent; there is no desire of your heart there is
          no feeling of your soul, that cannot be satisfied legitimately
          and consistently with your nature in the Gospel of the Lord Jesus
          Christ. You know how you were, those of you who embraced the
          Gospel in Babylon--you know how you were when the Gospel found
          you; there was, to quote a familiar expression, an aching void
          within you. There were desires of your soul, or of your spirit,
          which could not be gratified by the chaff and husks fed unto you
          by the so-called teachers of the day; there were aspirations for
          knowledge, for truth and for God, that nothing could satisfy; you
          sought in vain for their gratification; you searched on the right
          hand and on the left, you inquired here and there, but you could
          not get the knowledge you needed; there was no one who could give
          you the satisfaction you yearned after; but no sooner did you
          hear the truth; no sooner did you hear the sound of the
          everlasting Gospel, and the voice of a man endowed with the
          Priesthood, than you felt that you had found the pearl of great
          price, you felt that the desire of your heart was about to be
          gratified, and that if this religion proved true, if these
          statements and testimonies could be relied upon, then that which
          you had so long sought for and desired was within your grasp.
          Men may strive to repress these yearnings and desires after
          knowledge, as priests and teachers do today throughout the earth;
          they may ridicule and deny their existence, but there is that
          within us, as children of God, which speaks louder and has more
          force, potency and effect than the traditions of our fathers or
          the teachings of our former priests and teachers ever had; there
          is the voice of nature there is the voice of heaven in our
          hearts, which calls for revelation from God, which calls for
          knowledge, which calls for certainty, which calls for something
          that is tangible and that can be relied upon, and which man with
          his man-made systems and with his fooleries, cannot gratify nor
          supply by any means in his power. We hear men constantly talk
          about the delusion that exists here, and about the folly of men
          seeking for revelation and knowledge from God. The man must be an
          idiot who talks so; he who makes such assertions does not
          understand the human character. If he had studied himself he
          would have seen that there was something within himself which
          claimed more than that which man can give--that there was a voice
          within him which demanded and called loudly for truth--tangible,
          reliable truth--something that could be understood and that came
          from God. If this were not so, why do we see so many men running
          hither and thither after knowledge, after spirit-rappers,
          astrologers, fortune tellers, and phrenologists, to tell them
          their fortunes and reveal something relating to the future; they
          will do anything that will give them any idea of their future.
          These may be the perversions of the feeling, yet you see the
          manifestations of this want cropping out in various forms all
          over the earth, among every people, and even among the heathen.
          When it is not governed by truthful principles, it is found
          running astray, and leading men and women astray who are guided
          by it.
          Wherever human nature exists, there is found a desire for the
          knowledge of truth, a want of that which pertains to God and to
          eternity, and this want or desire cannot be repressed. There is
          no power on earth that can repress it; men's traditions may
          stifle it; but when the spirit is allowed to operate freely and
          unrestrained, it breaks through all these barriers and brushes
          aside these cobwebs to seek for truth--pure truth as it comes
          from the Eternal; and when it once obtains a taste from the
          fountain of truth and can drink freely, it is refreshed, and the
          one great desire of the heart is satisfied. This is as it has
          been with us, my brethren and sisters; hence the contentment that
          prevails through our valleys and settlements; hence the peace
          that is to be observed in our families. Peace broods over Zion;
          there is life and buoyancy in the hearts of the children of Zion.
          Why is this? It is because we have received that which we have
          desired; because we are living in harmony with the laws of our
          being; it is because the wants of our nature are being gratified
          through the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. If there be any
          among us who are not satisfied, if there be any among us who are
          wandering hither and thither, looking for something that they do
          not have, they are the ones who have committed sin and
          transgressoon; they are the ones who have grieved the Spirit of
          God; they are the ones who have forfeited their claims upon God
          for his spirit and his love, and they go with their souls
          unsatisfied, seeking for contentment but finding it not. If there
          be any among us who are thus seeking, they form a class that is
          distinct from the faithful, humble Saints of God who live their
          religion and work righteousness.
          It should be a cause of thanksgiving and gratitude with us that
          God, our Heavenly Father, in the abundance of his goodness and
          mercy has revealed unto us his everlasting Gospel; that in his
          kindness he has sent his Holy Angels from the heavens with the
          truth, and the power, and authority to administer the truth, and
          the ordinances pertaining to the truth, unto the inhabitants of
          the earth. Yes God in his mercy has visited our planet where
          darkness reigned, where confusion and ignorance had spread their
          dread consequences, and all were like the blind groping for the
          wall, when the voice of God sounded from the heavens and broke
          the long silence that had existed for so many generations.
          Brother Brigham has said that in his young days when he looked at
          the inhabitants of the earth he was reminded of an ant hill in a
          state of excitement, with the ants running hither and thither
          without aim or purpose. Now, this was the condition of ourselves
          and fathers when the sound of the everlasting Gospel came to the
          earth. The inhabitants of the earth were running hither and
          thither, and there was none to guide them, no one to control
          them, no voice to be heard among the children of men saying with
          authority, "Here is the way, walk ye in it;" there was none to
          say, "Thus saith the Lord;" not a voice inspired of God, to be
          heard from pole to pole, from east to west; but all were
          ignorant, all were confused, all were dark. But since the Gospel
          has been restored, since it was received by Brother Joseph Smith,
          the Prophet, and preached to the people, and they listened to the
          testimony of God, what a change has taken place in the character
          of some portion of the population of the globe since that time.
          There are principles and qualities that have been and are being
          developed for the last thirty-five years, that were supposed to
          have no existence among men; it was supposed that they had
          disappeared, that they never would be restored again. The key of
          knowledge through which the Apostles wrought such wonders in the
          days in which they lived was no longer to be found among men; but
          as soon as the Holy Priesthood was restored to Joseph Smith--for
          he received the power and authority from heaven, and through him
          the principles of heaven were restored to the earth--then what a
          change we behold! From the midst of the chaos that existed, order
          has been produced; from the midst of the strife that everywhere
          prevailed, union has been brought to light; from the midst of
          confusion and war, peace has been established; and we see
          qualities developed now in the midst of our fellow-men which we
          supposed never could have existed again. What is this
          attributable to? Says one, "It is attributable to imposture and
          delusion." So they said in the days of our Lord and Savior Jesus
          Christ; but, let them say as they please, we enjoy these fruits;
          for, whereas we lived in strife, we now live in peace; whereas we
          lived in confusion, we now live in the midst of good order;
          whereas we lived in ignorance, we now live in the midst of
          knowledge, we bask now in the light of eternity in the rays of
          that light which surrounds the throne of God our Heavenly Father,
          and our souls are satisfied, and we can rejoice and be glad, and
          thank God from morning until night for having bestowed upon us
          his everlasting truth. Why should it not be so?
          We are taught to believe that the Gospel is the power of God unto
          salvation to every soul that believes. Salvation from what? "Oh,"
          says one, "salvation to our souls." It is the power of God unto
          salvation--the salvation not only of our spirits, but of our
          bodies. In ancient days it saved the Jews, the Greeks and the
          Barbarians from error, from evil of various kinds, and it will in
          like manner save us. In heaven, we believe, it produces order,
          peace, and happiness; and we expect, when we leave here, to go to
          a sphere where, under the influence of the Gospel, every good
          quality of our nature will be developed. Why should we not
          receive, by the application of those heavenly principles to us
          and our lives here on the earth, the same results? They have
          produced them in days gone by, they are producing them now, and
          will continue to produce them as long as we live in accordance
          with them. 
          Now, my brethren and sisters, there is nothing left for us to do
          but to be faithful to that which has been revealed unto us. The
          evidences which we have received are of that character that we
          will be under the heaviest condemnation unless we live agreeably
          to the principles God has given unto us. We cannot plead, as many
          can, that we are ignorant; we cannot make excuses of this kind,
          for we are not ignorant; we are in the enjoyment of knowledge. We
          never went to prayer in our lives, in secret, and supplicated God
          in faith for the blessings that we needed, that we did not
          receive the desires of our hearts, and we arose from our knees
          feeling that God was with us and that his Spirit and power were
          near unto us and resting upon us. There never was a time, from
          the day that we became Latter-day Saints to this day, that we
          have asked in humility and meekness for any blessing and have had
          to arise from our knees dissatisfied and empty; but we have
          always received those blessings that have been necessary for us
          when we have asked in faith. What a blessed and glorious
          privilege is this! When we are in trouble, in the midst of
          affliction, and harrassed by our enemies we can go unto Him, who
          is the Author of our being, unto Him who created all things, who
          has the power to control our enemies and pour out our souls in
          prayer and in supplication, and feel that the record has been
          made, that the incense of our hearts has ascended acceptably unto
          God, and is treasured up there, and held in remembrance by his
          Holy Angels in his presence. What a glorious privilege is this
          that we have, as a people and as individuals, no matter how bowed
          down in sorrow, no matter how deep the affliction that may be
          around us, this is an unfailing source of strength that God has
          given unto us, and to this may be attributed the wonderful
          preservations that we have experienced from the beginning. 
          How diligently our enemies have sought to destroy us, to destroy
          the Holy Priesthood from the earth and kill the Lord's anointed!
          How often has it seemed that they were just upon the point of
          closing upon us, when it seemed that no earthly power that could
          be exerted could save us from destruction! To whom shall we
          attribute these wonderful deliverances which we have experienced?
          Shall we attribute them to mortal power? Oh, no; we have learned
          too well how weak and futile is mortal power. But what is it
          attributable to? To the faith that God has implanted in us
          through the revelation of the truth unto us. It is attributable
          to his having rent the vail of darkness that has covered the
          earth and revealed himself unto us. It is attributable to His
          having opened up the channel of communication between Himself and
          us. Yes, there is a channel of communication between this people,
          the men and women who compose this people, and the throne of our
          Father and God; and our prayers have ascended acceptably in His
          ears, and they have been registered on high, and they will be
          answered in their time. There never has been a prayer offered up
          in faith, meekness, and humility from the day this Church was
          founded until now, but has reached the ears of the Lord, and is
          registered in His presence, and will be fulfilled, sooner or
          later, upon the earth we inhabit, upon our posterity and upon the
          wicked who have afflicted us. Is not this a glorious consolation?
          Do not your hearts swell with gratitude and thanksgiving to God
          when you reflect upon this? It has been as a wall of strength
          surrounding us; it has been greater than the munitions of rocks
          and the lasting hills that have been reared like a mighty bulwark
          around our homes. The prayers of the faithful servants of God,
          which have been exercised from the beginning in behalf of Zion,
          have been a tower of strength. Shall we call ourselves Latter-day
          Saints and fail to appreciate and make a right use of the
          privileges and blessings which our God has given unto us? If we
          do, we are unworthy of them; and if we continue to do so, the
          privileges and the blessings which we may enjoy will be withdrawn
          from those who do so and given to those who appreciate them, and
          who are more worthy of them. You may depend upon that, as surely
          as you may depend that night will come in the course of a few
          hours when the earth has performed its diurnal revolution.
          If I were to ask you to-day, my brethren and sisters, what you
          would take for your standing and your privileges as Latter-day
          Saints, is there anything that you could name? Is there anything
          on earth that would be sufficient in your estimation to induce
          you to barter off the standing you have in the Church of God and
          the privileges you enjoy as members of his Church? There is
          nothing. You would say, if the wealth of the world were to be
          laid at your feet in exchange, you would spurn it as a thing of
          naught. But Satan does not tempt us in that style; he knows
          better. He understands our nature more perfectly than this. The
          experience he has gained in the past has enabled him to
          understand the best way of approaching the human heart, how he
          can best beguile us and insidiously lead us astray by temptations
          that are most effective. If a man who was in the enjoyment of the
          Spirit of God one year ago had been told that yesterday, on the
          7th of October, a trifling temptation would be presented to him
          of a certain character (and that at the time he would think
          contemptible) and he would yield to it, he would be astonished;
          he would scarcely believe it. "What! will I barter the wealth
          that God has given me, the wealth of the Gospel, the wealth of
          freedom which is contained in it? What! will I barter the joy,
          peace, and happiness that I now have for so contemptible a
          temptation as that? Will I do it? No; I will not." Yet the year
          passes away and the 7th of October comes to hand, the temptation
          is presented, and the man who thought himself so impregnable in
          the truth, and thought that he could not be tempted and seduced
          from it, falls a victim, and to what? to the wealth of the world?
          No; but to something that is so truly contemptible, mean, and
          low, that it is a matter of astonishment to everybody who knows
          him how he could be overcome by it.
          By this we see the power of Satan, the knowledge of Satan, and
          his cunning. He understands the avenues through which he can
          approach us best; he knows the weaknesses of our character, and
          we do not know the moment we may be seduced by him, and be
          overcome and fall victims to him. Our only preservation is in
          living near to God, day by day, and serving him in faithfulness,
          and having the light of revelation and truth in our hearts
          continually, so that, when Satan approaches, we will see him and
          understand the snare that he has laid for us, and we will have
          the power to say, "O no; God being my helper, I will not yield to
          it; I will not do that which is wrong; I will not grieve the
          Spirit of God; I will not deviate from the path that my Father
          has marked out for me; but I will walk in it. "Can we do this
          without the light of the Spirit? No; we cannot see where the path
          upon which we have entered will lead to; we cannot tell what the
          results will be; but when the light of the Spirit of God
          illuminates our minds and we are enlightened by it, we plainly
          see the results; and if we do not see them at the time, the Lord
          soon reveals them to us, and shows us that if we continue to take
          that course we will grieve his Spirit and fall victims to the
          As I said in the beginning of my remarks, there is wealth in the
          Gospel of Jesus Christ of which we have little knowledge to-day.
          There is an eternity of truth and knowledge, principle after
          principle, law after law, until every quality of our nature, of
          that God-like nature which we have inherited from our Father and
          God, shall be fully developed; until we shall be made capable of
          associating with God and angels through eternity. The Gospel that
          has been revealed unto us contains the principles that will bring
          this about. As we progress in it we will receive additional
          knowledge, additional light and intelligence, and our souls will
          be more and more satisfied. I rejoice exceedingly in this, I
          thank my God for it, because my soul is satisfied in this Gospel,
          and I know it would not have been anywhere else. I know there is
          every good thing for us if we will live the religion of the Lord
          There is this difference between God and Satan in the treatment
          of mankind. Satan is perfectly reckless as to what the
          consequences may be of anything he may give to the children of
          men. He will heap temptation upon temptation before them, give
          them honor, riches, and position, and, if necessary, he will give
          them revelation. What for? To damn them. He does not care
          anything as to what may become of them; but he offers them all he
          can control without judgment or discrimination. God does not do
          so. What is the course God has taken with us from the beginning
          to the present time? Is there a parent in the congregation who
          has watched as carefully over his children as God has over us? Is
          there a parent in the congregation who has withheld improper
          blessings as carefully from them as God has from us? He has
          watched over us tenderly and kindly, giving us a blessing here
          and a blessing there, a revelation here and a revelation there, a
          precept here and a precept there, as we could bear them,
          developing our experience, and knowledge, and our wisdom, leading
          us gently and safely in the path that will bring us into his
          presence. This is the difference between God and Satan; but I can
          only give you a little idea of it. Our Heavenly Father is a
          loving and a kind and beneficent Parent. He, himself, has trod
          the path we are now treading. He is familiar with every step of
          the road, with all the meanderings of this life; for he has had
          the experience in it. He knows how to guide us and how to time
          his blessings to our wants; and when you feel impatient and
          dissatisfied because he does not give you more than you now have,
          and when you are afflicted and bowed down in sorrow and pain, let
          the reflection enter into your hearts to comfort you, that our
          Father and God, our Lord and Savior Jesus christ, trod the path
          we are now treading, that there is no affliction and sorrow that
          we are acquainted with, or can be, that the Lord has not already
          had an experience in; and he knows our condition, he knows what
          is good for us. If we need a gift and a blessing, he knows when
          to bestow it upon us. This ought to comfort us; it ought to cause
          us to rejoice and be glad, and our hearts to be filled with
          thanksgiving continually before the Lord our God for his abundant
          mercy and kindness unto us his children.
          Can we think of anything that would be good for us, or that we
          ought to possess that Satan can offer unto us, that we will not
          obtain if we are faithful? Will he present unto us a good outfit
          by going to California or to any other place? If we are only
          patient, and abide our time, and serve God faithfully, he will
          bestow on us far more than that. There is no good thing that may
          be presented to us that we cannot obtain in the Gospel. We may
          let our minds range over the earth and think of the greatness and
          glory possessed by kings and potentates, these things are all
          embraced in the Gospel as a reward for the Saints, who will enjoy
          even greater blessings than these through their faithfulness. We
          talk about kings and nobles, and we have admired their glory; but
          the day is not far distant when there will be thousands of men in
          Zion holding more power, and having more glory, honor, and wealth
          than the greatest and the richest of the nobles of the earth. The
          earth and its fulness are promised unto us by the Lord our God,
          as soon as we have the wisdom and experience necessary to wield
          this power and wealth. Shall we not be patient, then, and
          diligent when we have so much assistance given unto us? Shall we
          not plod unwearingly and unmurmuringly forward in the path God
          has marked out for us, when we have the help, the comfort, and
          the consolation which he gives us day by day?
          We are not working for that which is in the distance, and toiling
          for the reward that is far removed, and that we have to look
          forward to; but we are receiving our reward as we go along, even
          the rich blessings of heaven, day by day and hour by hour, and we
          rejoice in them; and if we are houseless and friendless--that is,
          so far as the world is concerned--we have within us a wealth of
          comfort and joy that the world know nothing of; they cannot give
          it, they cannot take it away, for it comes from God. Why should
          we not be encouraged, then, under these circumstances? If the
          Latter-day Saints conduct themselves so as to receive
          condemnation, their condemnation will be most severe, for they
          have light, they have knowledge, they have blessings the superior
          of which no other people that we have any account of ever
          received in the same length of time on the earth. Well, I rejoice
          in these things. I do not wish to occupy your time any longer. My
          prayer is, that God will bless you and us all, and enable us to
          appreciate the great salvation he has committed unto us, for
          Christ's sake. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / George
          Albert Smith, October 8, 1865
                        George Albert Smith, October 8, 1865
                                 SYNOPSIS OF REMARKS
            By Elder George A. Smith, delivered in the Bowery, Great Salt
                   Lake City, General Conference, October 8, 1865.
                               Reported By G. D. Watt.
          It is somewhat of an undertaking to address so large an assembly.
          I bear my testimony to the truth of the restoration of the
          everlasting Gospel and this Work which God has commenced in these
          latter days.
          It has been the earnest desire of my heart, from the time I
          received the ordinance of baptism in 1832, to be able to fulfil
          my duties as a Saint, and to perform those things which were
          required of me as an individual--to watch over myself and keep
          out of mischief; that I might be prepared, when my work is
          accomplished on the earth, to inherit the blessings and glory of
          that King in whose service I am enlisted. I presume that a large
          proportion of the Saints have kept these things in mind, though I
          am astonished when I reflect upon the great number with whom I
          have been acquainted that are not now to be found, and of whom we
          have no report only that they have gone off this, that, or the
          other way.
          This reminds us of the parable of the sower that went forth to
          sow, as described by our Savior; some of the good seed fell among
          thorns, and they grew up and choked it; some fell by the way
          side, and the fowls gathered it up; some fell upon stony ground
          where it had not much depth of earth, and it came up quickly, and
          when the sun was up it was scorched and withered away; and some
          fell upon good ground and brought forth thirty, sixty, and an
          hundred fold. This is the substance of the parable, and the
          kingdom of God in the last days is certainly very much like unto
          Among the great number who have entered into the fold of Christ,
          by baptism, few have remained faithful to the present time. There
          were men among us whose hearts were faint--who felt that it would
          not do to gather here, because peradventure, it was the greatest
          undertaking of any age. To attempt to settle a whole people,
          situated as we were, in the midst of a howling desert a thousand
          miles from supplies was too great an undertaking in the eyes of
          many, and they dared not risk it. It required faith, courage,
          energy, daring, and perseverance, almost beyond description, to
          lead a people into the heart of the great American desert and
          establish settlements. We now see travellers arrive here by
          stage, who are proud of the achievement of having crossed the
          Rocky Mountains. It required a people full of faith, energy and
          devotion to the cause of God, and a willingness to abide every
          counsel given by the servants of God, to come here; and also
          required a large amount of faith, patience, energy, self-denial,
          and long-suffering to stay when they got here.
          I presume it was over three years after we came before a score of
          men in the valleys ever believed that an apple, peach, or plum
          could be grown here, and when the few men who had the faith and
          the determination to set an example began to produce their
          peaches, plums, and apples, and exhibit them, many opened their
          eyes with astonishment. Who on the face of the earth would think
          that at an altitude of four thousand four hundred feet above the
          level of the sea, and in latitude nearly forty-one, and near the
          southern limit of the isothermal line, such nicely-flavored
          delicate fruit could be raised!
          We came to this land because it was so desert, desolate, and
          God-forsaken that no mortal upon earth ever would covet it; but
          as Colonel Fremont reported that at the mouth of Bear River, in
          the early part of August, his thermometer stood at 29 Fah.,
          three degrees below freezing point, which would kill grain,
          fruit, or vegetables, our enemies said, "You Mormons may go there
          and welcome," chuckling to each other over what seemed to them
          our annihilation. We had been driven several times; our homes had
          been devastated both in Missouri and Illinois; we had been robbed
          of everything, and some came here with the little that they
          gathered up from the smoking ruins of their habitations. The
          priests sent compliments to each other rejoicing that those
          "Mormons" (who had been making the people acquainted with the
          principles of the Gospel by teaching them that the Bible meant
          what it said) had gone into the heart of a desert, never more to
          be heard of, for the Indians would destroy and grim want would
          consume them. The newspapers recorded the joy and gratification
          felt at the Utter end of "Mormonism." Governor Thomas Ford wrote
          as follows in the title page of his History of Illinois:--"An
          account of the rise, progress, and FALL of Mormonism."
          Notwithstanding, however the many drawbacks and difficulties
          encountered in the shape of drouth, crickets, grasshoppers, and
          the cold, sterile climate, the Spirit of the Lord was hovering
          over the Great Basin; as linguists tell us the Spirit of the Lord
          brooded over the face of the waters anciently, so it brooded over
          the Great Basin and the climate became genial and soft. I never
          was at the crossing of the Sevier river in summer, for seven
          years after our settlements in Iron county had been established,
          without experiencing frost; and now the Sevier valley produces
          luxuriant fields of grain and vegetables in the season thereof,
          in every place where the water has been taken out from the mouth
          of that river to the head of it, nearly nine thousand feet above
          the level of the sea. Who has done this? God and the Saints have
          done it! The Saints have had faith and walked over the land with
          the Holy Priesthood upon them and blessed and dedicated it to the
          Lord, and have labored according to the counsels of God, and the
          work has been accomplished.
          To have told the Mountaineers ten years ago that grain could be
          raised in the upper valleys of the Weber, where they encountered
          heavy frosts every month in summer, would have incurred their
          ridicule; but the genial influence of the Spirit of the Almighty
          has softened the rigor of the climate, and the flourishing
          counties of Morgan and Summit are the result. 
          In 1853, an expedition went out from Provo city after some
          Indians that had stolen stock. They went up the Provo river and
          encamped near where the city of Heber now stands, in the middle
          of summer. On their return they reported to me that they were
          nearly frozen, and that much of the wild vegetation was killed by
          the severity of the weather, and that it would be useless ever to
          attempt to raise grain there. I suppose that Provo valley this
          season, with all its losses, will raise not less than thirty
          thousand bushels of grain and vegetables. With a little
          reflection we can readily perceive that the Lord God of Israel
          has blessed these mountains and valleys which have been dedicated
          and set apart by His servants for the gathering together of His
          people and the establishment of His latter-day work upon the
          Go to Pottawatomie, Iowa; Nauvoo, Illinois; or Kirtland, Ohio,
          and ask for apples and peaches, and you will find them few and
          far between. In February 1857, I visited my former field of labor
          in Western Virginia, and inquired of an old friend for fruit; his
          reply was, "My peach trees are all killed, and I have not been
          able to raise any peaches for six years." Have you any good
          apples? "Not an apple that is fit to eat; our trees are all
          diseased and many of them have perished." This condition of
          things was very general. It is so wherever the Saints have lived
          and been driven away--their glory has departed to return no more,
          until the land is dedicated and consecrated to God and occupied
          by the Saints.
          We had to produce the necessaries of life from the ground, for we
          had not the means to send abroad eleven hundred miles to
          purchase. In a short time after the Pioneers settled this country
          some twenty-five thousand pilgrims to the land of gold passed
          through this Great Basin; a large portion of them came here
          destitute, and they are indebted to the inhabitants of these
          settlements for the preservation of their lives.
          California is indebted to the Latter-day Saints for its present
          greatness. We opened its gold mines, explored its country,
          explored and made the three principal roads leading there, and
          ran the first ship load of American emigrants into the port of
          San Francisco, then called Yerba Buena. We are the men that
          developed the resources of the Pacific Coast, and then we fed
          those tens of thousands passing through to that land, who would
          have starved and perished on the deserts had we not provided them
          with bread while they travelled the roads we made, to go to the
          The passengers on board the ship Brooklyn not only brought to the
          Pacific Coast their valuable library, but a printing press, which
          they established at Yerba Buena--now San Francisco, and from
          which was issued the California Star in 1847-8. We are the
          Pioneers of the great west. The Latter-day Saints established the
          first printing press in Western Missouri, the Evening and Morning
          Star, published at Independence in 1832-3, and the Upper Missouri
          Advertiser, in 1833, by W. W. Phelps. After the destruction of
          the printing office by the mob, the press was removed to Liberty,
          and was for years used to print the only newspaper printed west
          of Booneville, Mo., excepting the Elder's Journal, published for
          a short time in Far West.
          We were the Pioneer settlers of Western Iowa, making the road and
          bridging the streams from the vicinity of Keeosaqua to the
          Missouri river, nearly three hundred miles. We established the
          first paper at Council Bluffs, published by Elder Orson Hyde,
          entitled the Frontier Guardian, in 1848-9 and 50.
          The Omaha Arrow, published by Joseph E. Johnson, was the first
          paper published in Nebraska, who subsequently published the
          Huntsman's Echo at Wood river.
          We introduced the culture of wheat and fruit in Western Missouri
          and Iowa, improved agriculture in California, and developed the
          resources of these mountains, making the roads and showing men
          how to travel them safely.
          While all this has been done for our country, and we have
          comparatively tamed the savage and held in check his wild and
          blood-thirsty nature, that the inhabitants of the world could
          travel across the deserts without being robbed and murdered, we
          have been the subject of vile scandal, simply because our
          religious views were different from those of the hireling clergy
          who occupy the pulpits of Christendom. We taught that men should
          preach the Gospel without pure or scrip--preach it freely; and a
          man who depended upon a congregation for a salary by which to
          obtain his black coat and fit-out, was ready to denounce
          preaching without purse and scrip as a heresy; why? Because it
          would reduce him to the necessity of going to some useful
          calling, instead of making merchandise of the Gospel, which God
          has made free. It endangered his bread and butter; and thus
          priestcraft has raised a constant howl that the Mormons were
          leagued with the Indians. Why? Because we crossed the plains and
          the Indians did not rob us. The reason the Latter-day Saints
          crossed the plains and the Indians did not rob them was, they
          organized their companies camped in order, kept up guards,
          treated the Indians with kindness and respect, seeking no quarrel
          with them, and passed right along. When the Indians look down
          from the hills on one of our trains and see it camped, they know
          it is a "Mormon" train; they see a nice corral, and a guard out
          with the cattle who are carefully attending to their duty. When
          they come up they get a kind word. When night comes the "Mormons"
          kneel down to pray; they do not blaspheme the name of God. The
          Indians see all this and conclude not to interrupt that company,
          for they might get hurt--the "Mormons" having always provided
          their companies with sufficient arms for protection. That is the
          way the Latter-day Saints travel through these mountains
          uninterrupted. How is it with others? They would organize a
          company on the frontiers, travel a while in that condition,
          quarrel who should be captain, and divide into five or six
          squads; and by the time they got to the Sierra Nevada there would
          be only two families together, and they would divide their wagon
          and make it into two carts, and separate, if they were not afraid
          of the Indians. This way of scattering presents a temptation to
          the red men which is really very hard for them to resist, for the
          plains cannot boast of being safer than the streets of New York,
          Philadelphia, and Washington, where millions are expended to pay
          police to guard and protect the property and lives of white men
          from the depredations of white men.
          We can but have a deep feeling of sympathy when we realize the
          grievous afflictions that have befallen our common country. We
          look at the cause. When the Latter-day Saints organized their
          first settlements in Missouri--when they undertook to lay the
          foundation of Zion, although there was no charge which could be
          brought against them for violating any law, constitutional or
          moral, yet, because they introduced a new system of religion, the
          hireling clergy, the priestcraft of the world, arose against them
          to destroy them. As Governor Dunklin, of Missouri, said, "There
          are ample provisions in the Constitution and laws of the State to
          protect you, but the prejudice is so great among the people
          against you, that it is impossible to enforce these laws." There
          is a great deal said about the origin of the trouble between the
          North and the South; some said it was the almighty negro; but the
          fact is, the people did not respect the Constitution of our
          country; for the Latter-day Saints were driven in violation
          thereof from Jackson County to Clay and from Clay to Caldwell and
          Davis counties, and then from the State of Missouri to Illinois,
          and from Illinois to the Rocky Mountains, robbed and plundered of
          their property, their women ravished, their leaders murdered, and
          there was not a solitary man arose to enforce the laws or the
          Constitution in our defence. When the President of the United
          States was applied to, all he would say was, "Your cause is just,
          but we can do nothing for you." As soon as the Saints had found a
          shelter in the Rocky Mountains, this feeling of lawlessness went
          rampant throughout the Union. Men despised the statutes and the
          laws with which they were bound, and it was mob upon mob, army
          against army, until the whole country has been deluged in blood
          and craped in mourning. When will the nation repent of these
          follies and maintain those institutions God has introduced for
          the perfection of mankind? When will they hold the Constitution
          sacred and inviolable, and seek no longer to prostitute it for
          the destruction of the innocent? Until this is done they may
          expect to see sorrow and woe, which will increase upon their
          heads until they shall repent.
          Brethren, we should consider these things within ourselves. We
          commenced to make our settlements here under these circumstances,
          and here we have found a shelter. It has been a home for the
          oppressed, and a shelter to everybody that desired rest. The
          weary traveller has had a chance here to refresh himself and
          enjoy the blessings that are to be enjoyed in these valleys and
          no man's rights have ever been trampled upon.
          It is true we have had a species of animals pass through here
          that Alfred Cumming, in imitation of General Zachary Taylor, used
          to call "Camp poicks," newspaper reporters, who, Cumming
          declared, prostituted not only the body but the soul, by selling
          themselves for a penny-a-line to lie; publishing their lies to
          the world as scandal upon the heads of the Saints. They come here
          and drink of the mountain water, partake of fine potatoes, and
          turnips, and luscious strawberries, and feast upon the fruits of
          the valleys--the products of our industry--and then go off and
          defame the people, and try to get armies sent here to destroy the
          Saints. We care very little about these things; but when that
          species of animals appear among us, we look upon them as we do
          upon a serpent; we calculate they intend to bite, and all we ask
          of them is, to do as they generally have done, tell such big lies
          that nobody in their right senses can believe them.
          We have had another class of animals in the shape of Federal
          Officials. We have had fifty-eight of them, part of whom came
          here and conducted themselves like gentlemen; but we have had one
          thing always to consider, with one or two exceptions--very
          honorable ones,--they have scarcely ever sent anybody here that
          could get a place anywhere else. If they could get an appointment
          in any other Territory or a magistracy in the District of
          Columbia, or a clerkship in a Department, or the appointment of a
          weigher or gauger in the Custom House they would never come to
          Utah. Coming to Utah was the last thing and the last place for a
          man perfectly desperate for the want of an office. As the
          Secretary of State said when he sent Perry E. Brochus here to be
          judge, he had to send him somewhere to get him "out of the way;"
          and when he would not stay here, he was immediately sent to New
          We have generally known what the qualification of men was, and
          understood it precisely when they came. Their qualification
          generally was that they had performed some dirty work for some
          successful politician. A few that have come here have done as
          well as they knew how, with a mediocrity of talent--that is, if
          they had bright talents they seldom displayed them; and the
          majority of them come in here, open their eyes (putting one in
          mind of chickens just come through the egg-shell, when they get a
          sight of the light for the first time), and exclaim, "There are
          awful things here! tremendous things here!" and they begin to
          make reports, and print and publish them, go off to California
          and write for a year in succession there, drawing their salaries
          to report how things are in Utah. All these things we have had to
          encounter; but our industry, our economy and prudence, our
          loyalty, and our firm and determined adherence to the
          Constitution of the United States, have carried us through the
          whole of it.
          The administration of President Buchanan brought the power of the
          Government to bear against us. The traitor, General A. S.
          Johnston, was sent with what was then called by Secretary Floyd
          the best appointed army that was ever fitted out by this
          Government since its formation. General Scott issued orders to
          keep the troops massed and in hand, the supply trains to be kept
          with the main body of the army. The newspaper press of the
          country asserted that this army was to cause the blood of the
          Elders and Saints to flow in the streets of Great Salt Lake City.
          The mails being stopped, and the ordinary sources of
          communication closed, it was supposed the "Mormons" would be
          ignorant of the movements until the army came upon them like a
          thunder cloud. The Governorship was tendered to a number who were
          unwilling to come out with a formidable army but were willing to
          come without. Benjamin McCullough, of Texas, declined the honor
          on the ground that a confirmed old bachelor ought not to
          interfere with polygamy. Colonel Alfred Cumming accepted the
          office, and his appointment was hailed with general acclamation
          by the enemies of Utah, as he was considered a man of desperate
          character, who had on one occasion compelled even Jeff. Davis to
          apologise. When Governor Cumming arrived here and investigated
          the matter, he was satisfied that the Administration had been
          duped, and he made official reports to Washington that the
          charges against the Saints were totally unfounded, and the
          Administration let the whole matter fizzle out, and Uncle Sam,
          the generous old gentleman, had to submit to his pocket being
          picked to the tune of about forty millions of dollars--the cost
          of the Utah expedition.
          The lies upon which the Administration had acted were, that we
          had driven the judges from the country, had burned the Utah
          Library and the records of the courts of the Territory. When the
          matter was investigated it was discovered that the judges had
          gone off to the gold mines, where they could get some feet, or on
          other speculations, where they stayed until their time was out,
          not forgetting, however, to draw their salaries. The Library and
          court records, never having been disturbed, were found all right.
          I have been truly astonished at the character and conduct of a
          large portion of the Government officials we have been brought in
          contact with. One of them, Governor Harding, was presented by the
          grand jury of the 3rd Judicial District of the United States
          Court as a nuisance, and he was removed by Mr. Lincoln's
          Administration immediately after.
          Whenever a bill is presented before Congress to benefit the
          people of Utah in any way, it is generally referred to a
          committee, and there it dies. What is the reason? There is not a
          man in either House of Congress that dares to record a vote
          calculated to favor the people of Utah, for the mass of the
          inhabitants here are "Mormons." It is admitted that we have
          established ourselves in the desert under the most trying
          circumstances, making a half-way house for travellers between the
          Mississippi and the Pacific, rendering it safe to establish mail
          and telegraph lines; but the member who would record a vote in
          favor of this people in any way, the first thing he would hear
          would be his denunciation in every pulpit of his district by the
          black-coated gentry, and that would make his political grave. I
          sympathise with that class of men, as many of them otherwise
          would be willing to extend the same privileges, donations of land
          to settlers, means to erect public buildings, open highways, and
          sustain schools, as to other Territories.
          We have never had one dollar from any source to aid in the cause
          of education. We have built our school houses, hired our school
          teachers, paid the school bills for our poor--have done
          everything that has been done in education, without one dollar of
          encouragement from the parent Government. I have been astonished
          at this. I suppose it is the policy of the Government to extend
          the facilities of education, but it has not been done here; not
          one solitary dime has been received by Utah, while millions upon
          millions have gone into the treasuries of other states and
          Territories for school purposes from the Federal Government.
          This is the freest people on the face of the earth. By a faithful
          observance of the laws and Constitution of our country, and by
          obedience to the principles of our holy religion, we can enjoy
          the greatest amount of freedom. 
          The foundation has been laid, and the building will be erected
          upon it. God is at the helm, and no power can destroy his
          May God bless us, and enable us to fulfill our high destiny, is
          my prayer, in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / Daniel
          H. Wells, October 8, 1865
                          Daniel H. Wells, October 8, 1865
                        ETERNAL LIFE REVEALED IN THE GOSPEL.
           Remarks by President Daniel H. Wells, delivered in the Bowery,
                Salt Lake City, General Conference, October 8, 1865.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          It is with joy and satisfaction indescribable to myself that I
          enjoy the privilege, brethren and sisters, of standing before you
          at this Conference this afternoon.
          It is known to a great majority of you that I have been to Europe
          on a mission. I am glad that I have been to that country and that
          I have been permitted to return to these valleys again. Whether I
          go away or return is all one to me, inasmuch as I am called to
          act in the Church and kingdom of God; and where the Lord appoints
          me to act is where I wish to be; that is my place and position,
          and it is my delight to be subservient unto the call, and unto
          the counsel of those who hold the authority to dictate in the
          Church and kingdom of God. If I know myself, that is the place I
          wish to occupy at all times and on all occasions, and it gives me
          great satisfaction if I can fill that place, and perform the
          mission and duties required of me to perform, in that way that
          shall be pleasing to them and unto my Father in heaven; for if I
          please them I shall please Him, and if I please Him I shall
          please them.
          I feel grateful for the privilege of being a member of the Church
          and kingdom of God, and of being willing to do his bidding and
          abide the counsels of his servants. I feel happy in this calling,
          and to be associated with a people whose bosoms beat responsive
          with mine in regard to the great principles of the Gospel of
          salvation which has been revealed in these days for the guidance
          of the children of men upon the earth, that all people may avail
          themselves of these privileges and principles the same as we have
          done, if they choose it. They have this option within themselves,
          to obey and walk in the ways of life and salvation or to reject
          them; they can do as they please when the principles of salvation
          are made known unto them; they have their agency, and inasmuch as
          they will adopt them, they can enjoy the privileges which we now
          enjoy, and they cannot obtain them upon any other principle. As
          we have heard this morning, everything that is worth having we
          can obtain through the principles of the Gospel, and they are for
          the people of God.
          The whole world, we may say, have gone a whoreing after other
          gods, and they worship not the God of Israel, the true God. They
          do not know Him, nor do they take the pains to know Him whom to
          know is life eternal, as we read in the Scriptures. What can the
          world tell you about Him? Nothing; they do not know Him. How are
          we to learn God whom to know is eternal life? We learn to know
          Him through the principles of the Gospel. He is revealed to man
          through the authority of the Holy Priesthood, which has been
          established among the children of men through the revelations of
          the Lord Jesus Christ to His servants. What did we know about Him
          who is our Father, previous to receiving this latter-day Work?
          Could we tell anything about the relationship that existed
          between God and his children? anything about the object of God in
          bringing man upon the earth? We knew nothing about this nor about
          the laws which should govern and control him to bring him to
          exaltation in the presence of God. In ignorance of these great
          principles, mankind come upon the earth, they live and they die.
          They do not know how to subserve the purposes of the Almighty in
          their own being, how to accomplish the object of their creation
          and the end of their being on the earth. They cannot learn the
          things of God without the Spirit of God. I have in my own feeble
          way tried to teach the people concerning the things of God, to
          teach them who God our Heavenly Father is, or in other words, the
          ways of eternal life, and the relationship which exists between
          God and man; to teach them those principles which will subserve
          their being on the earth while they tarry here, and the laws
          which the Almighty has revealed for them to obey. I have borne a
          faithful testimony to the children of men, so far as I have had
          the power, while I have been on my mission, and Have endeavored
          to do what good I could whenever an opportunity presented itself.
          But I have often times felt as though the people did not wish to
          know the things I had to teach them, and that they might as well
          be left with their idols. I have felt that my testimony has
          rebounded back upon me, for they cared not to know the things of
          God. The world treat the revelations of God to Joseph Smith in
          the last days as an idle dream. They do not care to investigate
          it because they think it is a humbug and beneath their notice;
          they treat it with contumely and disrespect; they are united
          almost universally in rejecting it, in passing it by while the
          kingdom of God is actually transpiring upon the earth, and before
          the face and eyes of the whole world, and they mark it not; they
          have eyes and cannot see, ears and cannot hear, hearts and cannot
          comprehend nor understand, or if they do understand, will not
          obey the truth, but they will reject it. But does this conduct
          make it any less true? No, my good friends, No.
          We read in the good book that "strait is the gate and narrow is
          he way which leads to eternal life, and few there be which find
          it." If the world wish to be saved in the kingdom of God, let
          them take heed to the words of his servants that are abroad in
          the earth, for they have the authority of the Holy Priesthood,
          the authority of heaven; the angel of God has come and restored
          the Gospel to the earth in these last days, and we know it, and
          feel able to bear this testimony to all the world, and it has
          already gone as it were upon the wings of the morning to all the
          world. Let the people reject it if they can afford to do so; we
          know they cannot afford to reject it; it is the most expensive
          thing they ever rejected; they had better receive it if they knew
          what would be for their best good. The authority of the Holy
          Priesthood is here upon the earth, and all people can avail
          themselves of it if they think proper to do so. Why do not the
          world do it? That, however, is their own affair: if we are
          faithful and acquit ourselves as men of God, we thereby clear
          ourselves of the blood of this generation. The communication has
          been opened up between the heavens and the earth. Do you know it,
          Latter-day Saints? You do. Do the world know it? They may if they
          will take the proper course to put themselves in possession of
          this knowledge, but they do not care to know it; they are like
          the blind that are led by those who are blind, and they will all
          fall into the ditch together.
          I have felt a pride in speaking to the people in different
          nations and countries, of telling them that there is a place
          where good men may gather together, where men and women of
          integrity dwell, where the rights of all men are protected; that
          there is a place upon the footstool of God where the rights of
          mankind can be enjoyed and respected, where all can have the
          liberty of worshipping God according to the dictates of their
          conscience; that there dwells a people who are for God: there the
          earth has been reclaimed and is being brought in subjection to
          the rule of the God of Heaven, and the predominating feeling is
          for God. I have felt proud in bearing this testimony, and
          pointing my finger to Utah, where good men and women may dwell in
          peace and where good order and good government prevail, and the
          people are in subjection to Heaven's rule. Who is doing this?
          You, Latter-day Saints. Where else can such a thing be found?
          Nowhere. Abroad in the world evil influences predominate
          everywhere, but here it is not so. Not but that there is evil
          here, more or less: I expect to find it. If it were not mingled
          up with the people of God, then the wheat and the tares would not
          grow together until harvest, as the parable of the Savior plainly
          intimates would be the case, and this would supply grave reasons
          against it being the Church and kingdom of God. The kingdom of
          heaven is like unto a net cast into the sea, which gathers both
          good and bad. I expect this is the characteristic of the Church
          of God here; but still, the predominating influences are for God,
          the great majority of the people are submitting themselves to
          high Heaven's rule, and seeking with all their might to establish
          the kingdom of God upon the earth, and it is extending abroad,
          lengthening its cords and strengthening its stakes. It is a great
          blessing to live in such a place as this; a great blessing to be
          a citizen of the Church and kingdom of God upon the earth, and to
          hail from Zion. The world may treat you with contempt, but let
          them laugh who wins; and who will win if the Latter-day Saints do
          The world are in ignorance with regard to the principles that
          will save mankind; they do not know of any principles that will
          save any portion of mankind either here of hereafter--they do not
          know how to save themselves. They have a pretty good government
          in England, and I like that country pretty well for a great many
          things. You can go there and bear your testimony, and tell the
          truth, and be protected by the laws of the country; you can do
          that without being exposed to much danger of being mobbed, as the
          Latter-day Saints have been in this country, although there is
          some opposition; but the people stand in fear of the
          administrators of the law, because they will administer it even
          in protection of the Latter-day Saints. It is a nice little
          island, the island of Great Britain; and there dwell upon it a
          great many good, warm-hearted people, and I love them. There are
          a great many people there who are trying to know the ways of
          eternal life, and they will treat the ministers of salvation with
          more respect than in many other countries. I am glad to be
          associated with such a people.
          There are many persons who belong to the Church in foreign
          countries who would be glad to be gathered with the people here,
          and there are many who, although they do not belong to the Church
          and kingdom of God, still feel to realize and know that there is
          something necessary to be done. They have no confidence in the
          organized systems of religion of the present day. They can see no
          consistency in them, and suppose that everything in the shape of
          religion is a humbug. "Mormonism" has sprung up in the same age,
          and they condemn it without examination as being like all the
          rest, nothing more than an idle dream. Talk to them about
          revelation; yes, they have false revelations, and if they have
          false revelations and false spirits, does it prove that there are
          no true ones? The very reverse is the fact, and they would find
          true revelation and true spirits if they would only seek for them
          in the right way.
          We, as Latter-day Saints have cause to be thankful that we have
          found out the way of eternal life because we have had the blessed
          privilege of living in this day and age of the world in which the
          Gospel of salvation has been revealed for the guidance of the
          children of men; that we have been recipients of that knowledge
          which leads to eternal life and salvation in the presence of God;
          that we have been gathered out from the world that we may not
          partake of her abominations and of the plagues which are to come
          upon her; that this land has been consecrated and dedicated to
          God; that it has been held for the Latter-day Saints to occupy,
          to plant, and build, and inhabit, and that in consequence of this
          the land has been made to bring forth for the sustenance of His
          people who have been gathered out from where the wicked rule and
          the people mourn.
          Those who have embraced the Gospel in foreign lands sigh for
          deliverance, and the hope of this deliverance is the only ray of
          light that burns in their souls, and that gives them joy;
          although they live with their whole lives oppressed, this beam of
          gladness has found its way into their souls through the
          principles of the Gospel, and hence they are less oppressed in
          their feelings than many others. A hope springs up in their
          bosoms that the time will come for their deliverance from the
          oppression under which they groan. Many of you have been
          delivered from those bonds, and from that oppression. You may
          have suffered poverty and sickness, and been afflicted in many
          ways, and perhaps have found things different than what you
          anticipated in many respects in this your newly adopted country
          yet you have been delivered from a land where oppression reigns,
          and have been placed in a land of liberty--in a country where you
          can expand and grow, where you can plant your children with a
          hope that they may rise to importance in the kingdom of God, to
          something beyond what you and your forefathers have been enabled
          to do in the land where you have formerly lived, that you and
          your offspring may dwell where virtue, peace, and industry may
          meet with their reward.
          How is it in many of those old countries with the poor?--and it
          is with this class that we have the most to do; for some cause,
          known perhaps best to Him that rules on high, it is the poor who
          embrace the Gospel, who receive the Gospel who receive the
          message of good tidings, it is to them a theme of gladness and
          joy more than to any other class of men. Hundreds and thousands
          of them are out of employment, their stores gone, and they have
          no resources but what arise from their daily labor, and they are
          on the borders of starvation. The dearth in cotton has thrown
          thousands of people out of employment upon the cold charities of
          the world. How is it here, saying nothing about religion? Here a
          man can get a little land, and in a short time gather around him
          the necessaries of life upon which he can subsist and let the
          world wag as it will; his condition is improved, and he may hope
          to rise to wealth and influence. How is it there? Why he may
          tread in the path in which his fathers trod, but can go no
          further--can advance no higher in the scale of existence; if
          times are good he may subsist, and that comfortably--I am
          speaking of the poor classes, those that the Gospel most
          generally find, to them such a deliverance as the Gospel offers
          is glad tidings of great joy, for they can plant themselves where
          their children can rise above what their fathers have been. This
          is what many thousands of the Latter-day Saints have accomplished
          by emigrating from that country to this, and many more thousands
          will be benefited in the same way.
          This is only one of the benefits which the Gospel confers upon
          those who obey it; it benefits man whenever it touches him,
          temporally and spiritually, religiously, morally, and
          politically; it gives him an understanding of life; it teaches
          him how to live and how to exalt his being to the standard of
          heavenly intelligence; how to bring up his children and educate
          them in a proper manner, and how to avail himself of the
          facilities and advantages which the sciences and arts present to
          advance the purposes of the Almighty in the redemption of the
          human race; teaching him not only how to live in time, but in all
          eternity; giving him knowledge how to stand forth like a man of
          God in the world to subserve His purposes.
          The Latter-day Saints have the most cause of any people on earth
          to rejoice continually in Him who has bestowed upon them the
          proud position which they occupy; for the authority of Heaven is
          here, and the wisdom of Heaven is here, and you can find it
          nowhere else. I had the privilege of telling the people in those
          old countries that the sanctuary o the Lord was not with them;
          but in order to get the blessings necessary to qualify them to
          enter into the presence of God, they would have to go to that
          place where the people of God are abiding, where they shall be
          strengthened and become even a great and mighty nation; and I
          thank God that there is a people on the earth that can no longer
          be ignored by the great and mighty o the earth, for they have
          attained a standing and a position that must be respected. They
          may ignore this people if they think they can afford to do it,
          and we can afford to wait and see the purposes of the Almighty
          roll forth on the earth better than any other people can, because
          we are on the safe side; we have more time to wait. If the wicked
          knew when it is well with them, they would hasten to make their
          peace with the Almighty for his judgments are abroad upon the
          earth, and who can stay his hand. They are upon the wicked, and
          they know and feel it.
          The great mass of mankind are ready to ridicule the people of
          God, they are ready to ridicule his servants because they stand
          forth and declare that an angel of the Almighty has come to
          restore the Gospel in its fullness, and that Joseph Smith was
          called of God to be his Prophet; all this they say is nonsense,
          and they reject it without inquiring into the reason why they
          reject it. If they can afford to do this, we can afford to live
          our holy religion and bear their contumely and reproaches better
          than they can afford to give them. Such abuse hardly ruffles my
          feelings, if they will only keep their hands off; and if there is
          any danger of violence of that sort, we shall be apprised of it;
          there is not much danger in them, that is, unless they can take
          you by surprise. If the Latter-day Saint is on his guard,
          panoplied with the armor of righteousness, he may walk through
          the earth without being molested, because the Spirit o the
          Almighty will show him where the danger lies, and he can ward it
          off; and wisdom will be given him to absent himself from those
          places where danger is and turn away in another direction. Wisdom
          will be given him also what to say and what to do under every
          circumstance. The great evil that besets the path of the Saints
          is when they depart from the principles of eternal truth and
          rectitude, and betray their trust; for this they place themselves
          in the power of the enemy; and this they do when they are asleep,
          not when they are wide awake, and they are led little by little
          until they make shipwreck of their faith and go headlong to the
          devil, which they would not do while walking in the ways of
          righteousness. Have I felt that I have been in deadly peril? Yes,
          many times, if the enemy could have had his way. Sometimes I have
          felt like buckling on pistols, and at other times I would feel
          perfectly safe without them. In my travels no man has had the
          temerity to come up to my face and insult me; but I have heard
          the grinding of their teeth; I have heard what they would say to
          me addressed to somebody else. As I have already said, I cannot
          express to you the feelings of joy and gladness which pervade my
          whole soul upon my return home and to meet with so friendly a
          people; you cannot imagine what big feelings it gives me to have
          the privilege of meeting with the Saints in this and in other
          countries. Wherever I meet the Saints I feel that I always have
          known and been with them. Why is this? Because they have partaken
          of the same Spirit that I possess, and it runs from soul to soul
          like oil, or like water, or electricity, pervading each and every
          Saint wherever I have met them in any country. It is good when
          you are far distant from Zion to meet a people who will receive
          you with such a spirit and feeling. It is different now to what
          it has been with some of the Elders who have gone forth to preach
          the Gospel in the early days of the Church, when they found none
          to receive them possessed of a kindred spirit. After they had
          made known the message of heaven and found a people willing and
          glad to receive it, they soon found friends, and they found the
          same friends I found, namely, and honest-hearted people in
          ignorance with regard to the principles of life and salvation;
          they have been made acquainted with those principles, and there
          are many others who have not yet been made acquainted with them,
          although the Gospel has reached the ears of many of the
          inhabitants of the earth, and we have established ourselves in
          the earth as Latter-day Saints--the sons of God--in other words
          the Almighty has established his Church and kingdom on the earth
          with the authority thereof, and it is no longer to be ignored by
          the people of the world; it is a fixed fact.
          I do not know what they will do next, but I expect they will be
          found trying to do their utmost against it. I do not look for
          anything else. The Latter-day Saints expect to do a great work
          when they seek to dig down the hill of error which has
          accumulated for six thousand years on the earth; this they expect
          to do with the Gospel and by the blessings of God and his power
          assisting them, and so continue their labor until the earth is
          redeemed and brought back again to its pristine glory and
          perfection, and the kingdom of God rules and predominates all
          over its face, and the power of the wicked be essentially broken,
          and law and good order prevail everywhere, and men learn war no
          more. These may appear high-swelling words, and they may appear
          absurd to the millions of the earth. It does not matter to me how
          absurd they look, the facts in the case remain the same; all
          these things will be fulfilled in the own due time of the Lord;
          this Work has already commenced and is now transpiring before the
          face and eyes of all men. It is not done in a corner, but before
          the whole world in the tops of the mountains; our light is not
          hid under a bushel, but it is set upon a hill, that all the world
          may see it. The truth of the Almighty is being made known in
          these last days and it is a mighty testimony to the people, and
          they will be sorry if they do not take heed to it. There cannot
          be a grate testimony to the world than the living existence of
          this people in the tops of the Rocky Mountains, and all people
          can see it.
          I rejoice in this work; let it roll forth and my heart is glad. I
          feel proud to be associated with such a people; I feel proud that
          such a people exist; I feel glad and rejoice exceedingly in my
          soul, that I have lived in this day and age of the world, and
          have the privilege of bearing this testimony to the nations, and
          of becoming a citizen of the kingdom of God; of aiding to lay a
          foundation to build upon for time as well as for eternity, that
          we may come forth in the great hereafter and become associated
          with the Gods of eternity. What do the world know about all this?
          Simply nothing.
          I have been absent from home about eighteen months; during that
          time I have attended meetings in England among the different
          Conferences; I have been to Scandinavia on a short visit, and
          have been engaged in the Office at Liverpool in the publishing
          department a portion of my time. I felt exceedingly to rejoice in
          my labors and had pretty good health, for me, as a general thing;
          although I have felt as though I could have done more if my
          health had been better. I felt to regret that I could not do half
          as much as I wanted to do; this was the only feeling of regret
          which accompanied me on my return. I have not accomplished half
          as much as I would liked to have done. It seems a long way to
          travel, considerable time spent in coming and going, for so short
          a mission, but with me it is all right to go or to stay; so long
          as I am useful in the Church and kingdom of God, it does not
          matter to me where my time is spent as long as I live.
          The joy and gladness which I feel in meeting with my brethren
          again in this place is inexpressible. Some of them have told me
          that they intended to give an expression of their gladness at my
          return, and were disappointed at my entering the city sooner than
          they expected I would. I will take the will for the deed; the
          good feelings which prompted the wish to do that I think more of
          than any manifestation or demonstration that might have occurred.
          I know there exists in the bosoms of my brethren towards me a
          good and genial feeling that mingles with the feelings in my own
          breast. I realize that I have the faith and prayers of my
          brethren, and have realized their efficacy in many dangers, both
          by sea and by land, while I have been travelling to preach the
          Gospel, while I have been writing, while I have been afflicted in
          sickness, and while I have had difficulties to overcome. In all
          these circumstances I have felt buoyed up by that feeling which
          beats responsive in your hearts and my own. I have had the
          benefit of your prayers and appreciate them; they have been
          answered upon my head, and this is a living testimony to me,
          also, that your prayers are heard, and that you have learned how
          to approach God in an acceptable manner to find favor in his
          eyes, and have your prayers answered. My health is much better;
          the journey to Europe has done me good, and God has done it. This
          is His work, and we are His people.
          We talk about having done this and that; but it is the Lord who
          has done it, and we are merely instruments in his hands of
          accomplishing His purposes in the earth. It is a great honor to
          be an instrument in the hands of God of establishing His kingdom,
          and of bringing forth His purposes in the last days. The Saints
          are based upon the eternal rock of truth, and they will stand
          when the refuge of lies is swept away; they are those who will be
          found wise in their generation, and with oil in their lamps, and
          they will be the ruling and governing class of mankind; they will
          possess the earth, and the kingdom under the whole heavens will
          be given unto them.
          If we read the Bible we find that God has placed in His Church
          Apostles, Prophets, Pastors, Teachers, gifts and blessings for
          the edifying of the Saints and the work of the ministry, etc.;
          but the religious world in the 19th century say that these are
          all done away; they are satisfied to read about what the ancients
          enjoyed, and go hungry and naked themselves. When you go into an
          hotel for dinner you read the bill of fare, and actually partake
          of the good things therein noted. We should think a man either
          crazy or a fool who would read the bill of fare and exclaim
          against eating the savory food it describes. The Bible cannot
          ordain a person with authority to stand forth and obey himself
          and administer the ordinances of the house of God to others. "No
          man taketh this honor upon himself but he that is called of God
          as was Aaron;" and how can a man be called of God as was Aaron
          without immediate revelation from Him? If Jesus had to be
          baptised unto the baptism of repentance to fulfill all
          righteousness, who else should be exempt? He went down into the
          waters and was baptized, and the voice of God said, "This is my
          beloved Son in whom I am well pleased, hear ye him." He said to
          Nicodemus, "Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit he
          cannot enter into the kingdom of heaven." This is recorded in the
          Bible which the Christian world acknowledge to be their rule of
          faith. I exhort them to live to it. There is nothing said in the
          Bible about sprinkling, and the world baptize means immersion,
          and the world may quibble about it as much as they please. It is
          through these principles and this administration from under the
          hands of the servants of God that we receive the Holy Ghost,
          which will lead into all truth, and to an increase of knowledge
          in the things of God; through this channel we learn to know God,
          whom to know is eternal life. That Spirit which lighteth every
          man that cometh into the world, causeth mankind to seek after the
          truth and to become anxious after their eternal welfare, and to
          know about their hereafter. You may travel in every country and
          you will find this feeling pervading mankind; for everybody,
          except the infidel, worships at some shrine, and the infidel says
          there is no God, and does not worship anything. The Scripture
          says to know God is eternal life. How can we now Him and learn
          Him? This is an important question for Latter-day Saints as well
          as for others. How shall we learn to know the only wise and true
          God and Jesus Christ who he has sent and know the relationship
          that exists between Him and His children, and the purpose He had
          in bringing us into this existence?
          Let us keep this our second estate, for having kept our first
          estate we have been reserved to come upon this earth and obtain a
          tabernacle of flesh, pass through this mortality and have the
          privilege of accomplishing the object and the purpose of the
          Almighty in the organization of this earth. Let us be wise in our
          day, and secure unto ourselves those blessings that are for us.
          Let us be true and faithful, and full of that integrity with can
          look Heaven in the face without a blush, clinging to the truth,
          and never swerving from it for a single moment; and may God bless
          us and help us to do so is my prayer in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / Ezra
          T. Benson, October 9, 1865
                           Ezra T. Benson, October 9, 1865
                           EXHORTATION TO HOME-MANUFACTURE.
          Remarks by Elder Ezra T. Benson, at the General Conference, Great 
                          Salt Lake City, October 9, 1865.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          I feel grateful for this opportunity of speaking a few words at
          this Conference, and for the blessings that have been conferred
          upon us during its session.
          We have had a very interesting Conference, and there has been a
          great deal said which is of vital interest to the kingdom of God.
          We have come here to receive instruction for our further progress
          in prosecuting the purposes of God in the future, and for our
          present individual and mutual benefit. Can we carry the spirit of
          these instructions home with us and diffuse it in our families,
          in our wards, and in the different settlements where we, as
          delegates to this Conference, reside? If we an do this, then the
          Saints in the different settlements who have not been at this
          Conference will be equally benefited with us.
          Can we not only treasure up, but carry out, what we have heard
          this afternoon, and manufacture at home all we possibly can? Yes,
          we can do it; and we all feel that we can; and we now feel
          determined in our hearts to commence to do it when we go home
          from this Conference, that we may be benefited and enjoy the
          blessings that it is our privilege to enjoy. Who has made this
          request of us? The President and Prophet of the Church of Jesus
          Christ of Latter-day Saints, whom we have raised our hands to
          heaven to sustain. There is not an Elder in this vast assembly
          that would refuse to go to Europe, or to the islands of the sea,
          were he called to do so by this Conference. To refuse to respond
          to such a call would be a disgrace to him, and a sure token that
          he was weak in the faith, and if he possessed any influence among
          the Saints he would lose it. Now, it is the same Priesthood, the
          same power and authority, that has called upon us unitedly as a
          people, as parents, as children, as families and settlements, as
          the Saints of the Most High, to produce and make among ourselves
          that which we consume, to carry out to the best of our ability in
          all our settlements this very excellent counsel. It is a faithful
          attention to such instructions that will insure our salvation
          here, and our salvation in the celestial kingdom of God
          hereafter; for it is by means of the Holy Priesthood, and the
          keys and power of it, that we shall be led back into His
          The great object and purpose of the religion of Jesus Christ is
          to bring all the faithful back into the presence of their Father
          and God; for all who will abide a celestial law shall have a
          celestial glory, and a celestial glory is the highest glory that
          we have any knowledge of--it is where our Heavenly Father dwells;
          and no faithful Saint can ever feel satisfied short of reaching
          His presence and beholding His face. We are banished from our
          Father in Heaven in this low, sinful world; but we are not
          altogether lost, for He is feeling after us, and if we will
          listen to and obey the counsels of His servants, we shall be
          The brethren have spoken to us with great power during this
          Conference; I never have seen, in all my life, more power resting
          upon the Elders. I feel to bear my testimony to the truth of
          "Mormonism," as the world call it, to the truths that the Prophet
          Joseph Smith has brought forth and to the truth that President
          Brigham Young reveals to this people; these are the truths of
          heaven, and they will lead all who obey them to the possession of
          eternal life. Let us give diligent heed to these things. There is
          plenty for us to do if we are diligent in the things of the
          kingdom of God. How simple and plain are the principles of
          salvation! They pertain to us as mortals, and to this mortal
          world, and they show us that our heaven is here and will be of
          our own making, for we are of the earth, earthy; we came from the
          earth, and the meek will inherit it.
          We have got to learn how to take care of ourselves, and to
          organize the elements around us for our own comfort, and cease
          going to New York, Boston, and other places for supplies. Let our
          young ladies take pride in wearing bonnets made of straw raised
          in the country and braided with their own hands. In doing this
          they have the satisfaction of following the counsel of the
          servants of God, and of aiding a little in attaining our
          independence of foreign markets. Such a course as we have been
          advised to take at this Conference, with regard to home
          manufactures, will affect us for the better more sensibly in the
          future than in the present; but we are apt to think of the
          present and let the future take care of itself. When shall we be
          fully delivered from the corruptions of the world and from the
          influence of the false traditions which our fathers have taught
          us? The sooner we can overcome these, and follow faithfully and
          to the letter the instructions of the Holy Spirit, the better it
          will be for us as individuals and as a people.
          May God bless you, is my prayer in the name of Jesus Christ.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / Amasa
          M. Lyman, October 9, 1865
                           Amasa M. Lyman, October 9, 1865
           Remarks by Elder A. M. Lyman, delivered in the Bowery, in Great
                Salt Lake City, General Conference, October 9, 1865.
                             Reported by David W. Evans.
          I am happy to meet with you, my brethren and sisters, this
          morning, and I simply give expression to my feelings, in
          repeating what has been expressed by others that this Conference
          has been to me one of interest--richly instructive and edifying.
          In the admonitions that have been imparted we have been led to
          see, what in us is weak, dark, and should be improved. And in
          addition to that, the instructions have been rich in suggestions
          as to the ways and means by which we can secure to ourselves the
          blessings of that much needed improvement. While I have listened,
          the inquiry has risen in my mind as to how we, the people of the
          Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, could substantially
          and profitably pursue the labors devolving upon us and honestly
          continue the struggle to become what we are denominated--Saints.
          In the admonition that has been imparted we were truthfully told,
          that we were as yet only in part what we should be as Saints;
          that with all our labors and experience, with all the advantages
          for acquiring knowledge that have characterized our history thus
          far, we have yet much to learn. This truth, it appears to me,
          should be impressed upon the minds of all who think and reflect.
          It is one that is evinced in our conduct and actions as a people.
          There is no one feature in our history that is rendered more
          distinct or plain to be read and comprehended by the reflecting
          mind than this--that we, in all our learning, learn but slowly,
          and have as yet learned comparatively little of that large amount
          that may be learned, and that we yet manifest in our lives but a
          small degree of that perfection that should characterize us as
          the children of God, as the people of the Saints of the Most
          High, who are blessed with the light of the Gospel, ministered to
          them continually in simplicity and in truth. All our meetings,
          like the present, where there is congregated together the largest
          representation of the people of God to be met with in any one
          place, still continue to be characterized by instruction and
          teaching on those principles that it has ever been the object of
          our heavenly Father, and of his servants, to impress upon the
          minds of the Saints.
          Now, how shall we, as the servants and ministers of God, expect
          to see in ourselves, and in the people to whom our ministrations
          extend, a permanent and progressive improvement, as the fruits of
          our labors, unless we, to some extent justly and truthfully
          comprehend the principles that are involved in the work that is
          devolved upon us? It appears to me, as but consistent and
          truthful, that the enlightenment of the people and the
          development in them of the knowledge necessary for their blessing
          and exaltation should legitimately follow the development of
          knowledge and a just comprehension of truth in those who minister
          to them.
          Well, we are almost all teachers and preachers; in some
          relationship in life, in some position in the community, we all
          put on the character of teachers; and when we take into account
          the sum of the evils that exist as barriers between us and the
          enjoyment of a fulness of happiness, when we consider what these
          are, to remove, conquer, and overcome them should be our labor.
          And if the knowledge of God, of truth and of the principles of
          the Gospel is necessary to the accomplishment of this work, it
          should be our business, as servants of God and of the people, to
          learn this lesson ourselves; for it is evident to my mind that
          our attention and devotion to the truth and to such a course of
          action as the knowledge of the truth would suggest to us, is that
          which should regulate us in life, and the extent of our devotion
          to this is always marked and determined by our appreciation of
          its value.
          If we, as a people, were capable of appreciating, and had justly
          estimated the counsels that have been imparted to us continually
          in relation to what is denominated our temporal salvation, our
          devotion to the advice would have produced far different results.
          There would not have been, as there is to-day, a feeling to
          expostulate with the people on the necessity of laying up and
          securing to themselves bread against a time of want. There would
          not be the empty granaries and the comparative lack of that which
          should exist in abundance among the people.
          I do not know what name men may give to the causes that have
          induced this condition of things. In my mind there exists but one
          general reason--our lack of comprehending the truth in relation
          to the nature of the work in which we are engaged; and that with
          all our opportunities of acquiring knowledge and getting
          understanding we are, as has been truthfully told us in the
          fatherly admonitions imparted to us during this Conference, only
          just beginning to be Saints--only just entering on that work, the
          consummation of which will make of us that kind of a people for
          whom the Lord says it is his business to provide.
          Now, perhaps, we may have been to some extent presuming too much
          upon the kindness, charity, and goodness of our heavenly Father.
          We may have fancied, perchance, that he is pledged to preserve us
          irrespective of the course that we pursue, simply because we have
          supposed that we are Saints, because we have been baptized into
          the Church. But this truth cannot be too forcibly impressed on
          our minds--that if it is the business of the Lord to provide for
          his Saints, it is our business exclusively so to live that the
          Lord may have Saints for whom to care and provide, whom He may
          protect, and who may securely rest beneath the shadow of His
          wings, enjoying the blessings of His protection against evil.
          But what is it that will constitute us Saints? A knowledge of the
          work we have to perform, and then a faithful, humble, undivided,
          and unreserved devotion to its accomplishment. That will
          constitute us Saints; that will constitute us teachers in the
          midst of the people; that will constitute us a people to whom the
          ministrations of the Priesthood will extend as a fountain of
          The attainment of this knowledge, the possession of this rich
          understanding, is that to which you and I must reach ere we are
          established in the truth beyond a chance of becoming unsettled.
          This is the way it appears to me. My paths may be crooked, and my
          efforts to attain to this position and condition may be feeble,
          and not only feeble, but they may be characterized by a
          corresponding amount of improprieties and inconsistencies; but
          this is what appears to me to be the great object that is before
          me, that invites my exertions, induces me to labor and
          struggle--not till I am worn out, but until I find the
          realization of my brightest hopes in the possession of that which
          I seek.
          As the Gospel presents itself to me, as the work of God is spread
          out before my mind, so I judge of it, so I appreciate it, so I
          talk about it, so I recommend it to you, my brethren and sisters.
          "Well," says one, "when will we learn?" That depends altogether
          upon ourselves. "Why," says one, "will not the Lord have
          something to do with it?" The Lord has to do with it; and if we
          would be more careful about what we should do, instead of
          troubling ourselves about what the Lord should do, it might
          perhaps result in bringing us to the enjoyment of greater and
          richer blessings. Why, the Lord knows what to do, and He has no
          need of our instruction. The Lord is supposed, by me at any rate,
          to be fully up to all that devolves upon Him in relation to
          ourselves. The Lord is waiting for us to come along; He is only
          waiting for us to come up to that which it is our privilege to
          Some people may suppose, per-chance, that the channels of
          knowledge are not open to all the people, as they are to the few.
          Some may cherish the idea that position, or place in the Church
          and kingdom of God may make a vast difference in the attainment
          of the blessings requisite to our happiness, and to our
          acceptance with God, and to our progress as Saints in the way of
          life. Position may make vast differences, perchance; but I do not
          know of an individual so low, I do not know of an individual so
          poor, but what the fountains of knowledge are as accessible to
          him as to the highest, as well to the last as to the first. It is
          not from the fact that the fountain of knowledge is only open to
          the teachers among the people, that they occupy their position.
          The teachers in the midst of the people are something like what
          we see in our schools. You go into our schools, and if the
          teacher has a large number of pupils in charge, he very likely
          will have recourse to this bit of policy--he takes some of his
          most advanced scholars and gives them the position of teachers
          amongst their school-fellows and associates. Well, does this
          exalt them above the character or capacity of pupils? No! They
          are still learners in the school, and it is just as necessary for
          them to continue their labor for the acquisition of knowledge as
          before. This is the character of the teachers in Israel; that is,
          as I view it. This is the way I view myself as a teacher in the
          midst of Israel--as one upon whom has devolved the duty of
          extending the principles of salvation to those around me. When I
          labor to teach or instruct, I do not feel that they whom I am
          instructing need instruction any more than I do myself. I feel
          that all the necessity that may exist for any increase of wisdom,
          knowledge, and understanding in reference to the humblest soul in
          the kingdom of God, exists in all its force for me.
          Well, with this feeling I look upon the work of God, I think of
          it, I study about it, and then I make my efforts for the
          accomplishment of the duties that seem to devolve upon me. And
          when I get to know more and become wiser with that increase of
          wisdom, shall not need to tell any body, it will be evinced in
          increased propriety of action to the accomplishment of what I
          seek to accomplish. What duty, then, devolves upon us as the
          ministers of God--the Priesthood dispersed and living among the
          people? Why, we should seek for the development in ourselves of
          that knowledge without which we tell the people that neither they
          no we can be exalted to glory and greatness.
          "But," says my brother, "we must tell the people they should be
          correct in the duties of life in its multiplied details." Yes,
          this is good; this must be; but what is it that will correct all
          these matters? My neighbor kindly takes me by the hand to-day and
          says, "Brother Lyman, you can walk in this, that, or the other
          direction, it is safe." It may be ground that I have not explored
          and do not understand, and I feel that his direction and
          instruction are a blessing to me. So is that a blessing which
          shall lead and guide the people until the "day shall dawn and the
          day star shall arise in their hearts," whether it be the kindly
          instruction of teachers who live in their midst, and with whom
          they meet and associate from time to time, or whether it be the
          suggestions of the written history of those who have long since
          passed away, it makes no difference. The history or record
          contained in the Bible presents an example of the right, and it
          is suggestive of right to those who read it, and upon the same
          principle that what could be said to you by the living teacher is
          suggestive of the truth.
          Now, this appears to be what we need; we want to have
          understanding developed within us. Well, what is it? Perhaps if I
          were to describe my notions and views of things, it would not be
          the same as if described by some other man. One of the ancient
          apostles spoke of understanding in such a way that we can judge
          something of what his views were in regard to it. Said he, "We
          know that Jesus has come." It was a great question in New
          Testament times among the immediate successors of Jesus--"Has
          Jesus come, or has he not?" "Has Jesus been and died, or is it an
          imposture?" the same as it is about the Saints now--"Is this the
          work of God or is it an imposture?" Well, now, says the apostle,
          "When that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding
          to determine between those that serve God and those who do not."
          This is what we want; we want understanding, that we may know for
          ourselves that this is the work of God. Why? Until this is
          developed within us there is a chance for uncertainty to hang
          around and cling to us, and a possibility that our feet may be
          moved from the path of rectitude and truth. We may be like men
          whom I have seen that have travelled for a score of years with,
          and have labored in the Church, and have suffered--that is, about
          as far as men have suffered who have not died--and then, after
          the expiration of this time, we find them floating off to the
          east and to the west, to the north and to the south. "Why, good
          brother, what is the matter? I did not believe you would ever
          have left the Church." "Ah!" said he, "I have not found it what
          it was said to be." Such individuals have not understanding
          developed within them; they do not know that this is the work of
          God. The apostle in ancient times knew that Jesus had come,
          because of the gift of understanding by which he was able to
          determine for himself. It is this understanding that, when
          developed in the mind or soul of a man, sets aside all
          uncertainty and silences all doubt. Uncertainty departs from the
          mind at once, and the soul settles in unbroken, undisturbed
          tranquility and repose, so far as the nature of the work in which
          it is engaged is concerned, and the language of that soul is, "I
          know that this is the work of God."
          Now we, as the ministers of God, called from among the people to
          labor among them, should remember all the time, that it is our
          first great duty to learn ourselves, to obtain knowledge and
          understanding ourselves, and then to use all the judgment and
          understanding with which God may favor and bless us, to enlighten
          the people and to lead them onward.
          But, says one, the people have been taught for years, and they
          have not yet leaned; when will they learn? I will tell you. When
          they have been taught long enough they will learn. How? Just as
          you and I when we went to school. We had to study our lessons
          until we could master them, and then that labor was completed.
          I am glad of this continuous principle that seems to mark the
          character of the work of God. If we do not learn in two, five,
          ten, twenty, or thirty years the truth that would make us free,
          still the opportunity is open, still the chance is afforded us to
          learn and to mend our cooked ways. This is why I love the Gospel;
          this is what first fixed a deep and abiding regard for it in my
          affections--the mercy that was in it, the kind forbearance, that
          seemed to have a life like the life of the Almighty--eternal,
          that would never die.
          Let us be encouraged to hope for such an increase of intelligence
          among the people--the fruit of the labors and ministrations of
          the ministry in their midst, as shall develop increasing
          perfection of action among the people, and buy-and-by they will
          know enough of themselves to adopt such a policy as would enrich
          and save them temporally.
          Well, says one, would they not get spiritually saved if they were
          not temporally saved? I do not know. I want to be saved, and I
          would like to be temporally and spiritually saved. If there
          should be any difference between them, I want them both. This is
          the salvation before us. If we had that spiritual salvation
          which, in the language of the Savior, constitutes eternal
          life--the knowledge of God, an understanding of the principles of
          salvation, if we had a sufficiency of divine wisdom, in that
          light would vanish all these dark clouds that exist around us as
          so many drawbacks to our prosperity and to our progress in the
          way of life. In that light we would be able to appreciate the
          value of doing right, above that of doing wrong. This is the way
          the matter appears to me, and I look forward to the time when the
          Saints will be all they should be, as Saints. I hope and labor
          for it, and there is no feeling in my soul but what reaches
          forward with hopeful confidence to a time when the last dark
          cloud shall be moved from the minds, not of every body, but of
          the Saints with whom our labors in this work begun, and with whom
          we have been associated the last thirty years of our lives; of
          the Saints with whom we have endured toil, with whom we have been
          driven, and in whose fate and fortunes we have shared. We expect
          it for them, we hope for it for them, and we labor for it for
          them. Will not you labor with us? We tell you that to know God is
          eternal life, which is simply repeating the truth declared by the
          Savior of the world; and while we impress this repeatedly, again
          and again, on your minds, and bring it to your attention, will
          not you unite with us in struggling for the acquisition of that
          knowledge for yourselves? Why says one, can't you get it for us?
          No; it is all I can do to get knowledge for myself. Well, but,
          says one, can't you impart to us? I can do what I am doing this
          morning--making the best effort in my power, within the compass
          of my ability, to awaken such trains of thought and reflection in
          your minds as will lead you to seek after the truth, and seeking,
          find it. If what I have learned, if the little knowledge I
          possess should have enlightened any other mind than mine, or
          could be possessed by any other individual than me, without his
          action being required for its attainment, things would be
          different from what they are. Our Father has fixed it so that we
          might live, and find the elements of happiness and joy for
          ourselves; and when they were acquired, they would be ours to
          possess, fixed within, the treasure of our own souls, for ever
          ours, constituting our happiness with all its eternal increase
          and greatness.
          Let us wake up and feel that we are the children of God, and that
          as God's children, the object of our being here is to find and
          realize within ourselves that development of our natures that we
          inherit from our Father and God, that will exalt us till we can
          be fit associates for Him, that between Him and ourselves there
          may exist all that wealth of harmony that will constitute the
          happiness of heaven, the bliss and glory of the saved and
          Well, now, to acquire this, what is the labor before us? What is
          necessary? That we turn from evil. Well, how shall we know evil?
          Why our evils are pointed out continually, not only by the feeble
          dawnings of light within us, but by the light of that inspiration
          that burns in the hearts of the servants of God, making their
          comprehensions of truth reach incomparably beyond those who have
          not in such a way devoted themselves to the acquirement of
          knowledge. In that light our weaknesses and follies are brought
          to our understanding, that we may see them, and that seeing and
          comprehending we may go to work and regulate our actions so that
          when God blesses, aids, and strengthens us, we may acquire that
          knowledge that will exalt us above the influence of the ignorance
          that is around us.
          Now, my brethren and sisters, having expressed these few
          thoughts, I hope that we may be able to go away from this
          Conference to our respective homes to live and labor in the great
          work of our Father, and that when the half-year shall have passed
          away, and we are again assembled in this capacity that we may
          feel, and not only feel, but that it may be true, that we are a
          wiser and better people than to-day; and that we may entertain
          more truthful conceptions of God and the character of his work,
          and be acting in a manner better calculated to please Him and to
          secure His blessings upon us, than to-day.
          That this may be our happy lot, and that God's blessings may
          attend our every exertion for the development of Zion on the
          earth, is my prayer, in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / Amasa
          M. Lyman, April 5, 1866
                            Amasa M. Lyman, April 5, 1866
                               MARRIAGE; ITS BENEFITS.
            Remarks by Elder Amasa M. Lyman, delivered in the Tabernacle,
                        Great Salt Lake City, April 5, 1866.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          I am glad to enjoy the privileges that are extended to us on this
          occasion, and to meet with my friends, and to unite with my
          brethren in the ministry to render the occasion instructive and
          profitable. Whether we have much or little to say with regard to
          the great good there is to be secured and enjoyed, I would hope
          that in our efforts we might be blessed and favored in making
          some suggestions to the audience that will be calculated to
          awaken in their minds good thoughts that will lead them to God,
          and to a knowledge of the principles that are involved in its
          From all I have been able to gather from observing the course
          taken by ministers in their labors for the enlightenment of the
          people, I have come to the conclusion that, perhaps, there are
          not very many who will be able of themselves, and within the
          limited circle of their personal labors and exertions, to tell
          everything, even if they should know it, and communicate all that
          may be communicated for the benefit of the people. I believe that
          the servants of God, in their efforts generally, reveal to the
          people the workings of their own minds, under the influences of
          the Spirit of God, and are able to bestow upon them for their
          comfort, encouragement, and aid in the great work in which they
          are engaged, the results of their experience, of their reflection
          and thought. The Gospel that we have received is something that,
          as I view it, bears a direct relationship to our condition here
          and hereafter, and that it proposes to so direct our actions and
          our conduct in life, that they may all be made to assume a proper
          character. When our actions are right they have the character of
          virtues, and virtues commend us to God and to one another.
          Virtue, when practiced by us, is the surest and best foundation
          that we can have for confidence, not only in God, but in
          ourselves, and in one another, a degree of which is necessary to
          our happiness, to our comfort and joy. It appears to me that the
          man or woman, whose course of life is such that he or she has no
          confidence in his or herself, properly can have but very little
          in God. As brother Hyde has remarked, the time is near when we
          are to encounter the realities of our religion. I believe it is
          so. We have professed to receive the Gospel and have adopted our
          faith years ago. We have received more or less of a series of
          lessons that have been given to the Saints, from time to time,
          through the revelations of God, as they have been communicated to
          His people.
          There is a feature in our religion that I have thought was but
          little understood; it is like many other things that would be of
          much more value to us if they were well understood; our
          understanding of it is limited as a people, and about that very
          feature in our religion I feel disposed to make a few
          suggestions, as the results of my own thoughts and reflections,
          and of all that has been opened up of the matter in my mind with
          regard to it. As this feature of our religion is now receiving
          considerable attention from the people of the United States, who
          have become deeply concerned in regard to it, probably it would
          be well if we talk a little about it ourselves, that they may not
          be the first to learn, the first to know that which we ought to
          The question arises here, what is it that they have become
          concerned about? Not about our sins; but they have given us
          credit for a great many good things. They can but acknowledge
          that we have been brave in conquering the dangers of pioneering
          our way into an untried land and country; a land that was barren
          of comfort, barren of these things that were necessary to the
          sustaining of human life. They will compliment us to-day for our
          persevering industry, for the toil that we have endured, and for
          the perseverance that we have evinced in working our way, not to
          where we expected to find hidden treasures of gold and silver,
          but to the desert, to find a place so poor, so barren, and so
          forbidding in its aspect that none others would desire it, but
          that we might, in its desolation and isolation from the rest of
          the world, enjoy the poor privilege of living there without
          having our right questioned. They say we were brave. So we were:
          we had good reason to be so; we could not well be anything else.
          We encountered the desert with all its worthlessness and with all
          its unproductiveness, and we not only made bridges and roads, but
          we actually conquered the desert.
          "Why do you not say that the Lord did it?" If I were to say the
          Lord did it, then would you not ask me how the Lord did it? I
          know how he did it, because I saw it done. The Lord led us out
          here, but I know that he walked us on our own feet all the weary
          miles of our journeyings until we reached our destination. I know
          that since all this our friends from the States have come out
          here, and can now partake of our hospitality and feast on the
          fruits of our labor, industry, and enterprise. They are pleased
          at finding a comfortable half-way house between the Atlantic and
          the Pacific, where they can rest, eat our fruit, and enjoy
          themselves; yet they smooth down the wrinkles upon their visages
          (the fruits of indwelling hate), look very grave, and returning
          home lie about us, and represent the people of Utah different
          from what they are.
          We would suppose that they are blind with a holy horror, excited
          in them by the contemplation of a phantom which haunts their
          imaginations continually; they are afraid that the people in Utah
          will do wrong; they have got so far from the confines of
          Christian civilization and refinement that they are fearful, if
          they do not take some action in relation to the Saints, that they
          will go widely astray and perpetrate some great wrong. We have
          been asking them for years to admit us into the Union. Would they
          listen to us? No. Does our constant begging and praying for
          admittance into the Union ever awaken a feeling of sympathy in
          them towards us? It does not. Yet they make out to be so alarmed
          for our moral safety that they seem to have forgotten all the
          festering corruptions of the great cities of the east.
          When the great nation with which we are connected politically
          begin to make our faith the subject of special legislation, is it
          not time that we should know and say something about it? They do
          not complain of any dishonesty and corruption among us; they do
          not tell us that the land is sowed broadcast with iniquity; they
          are not alarmed about this, but they are alarmed because men out
          here in Utah dare marry a wife honorably and fearlessly, and then
          publicly own her as his wife. This is all they complain of. If we
          will only ignore this, I do not know but they will admit us into
          the Union. Do you think we had better ignore this little bit of
          our religion, or have we really determined within ourselves,
          soundly and sentimentally, whether it is actually necessary,
          proper, right, and just. If we could only slip it off and get
          admitted into the Union, it might be an advantage to us; but if
          it is worth enough to cling to, even if we have to live out of
          the Union, we ought to know it, that we may be the better able to
          make a good trade when we do trade. It is simply plural marriage
          that they complain of. They corrupt themselves elsewhere all over
          the world; but out in Utah men actually presume to marry women
          honestly; they presume to consider this the best course to be
          pursued to maintain the purity of man and woman.
          How shall we determine anything about the value of plural
          marriage, so that we may know whether it is worth anything or
          not? I do not know any way better than by determining first
          whether single marriage is of value or not--whether it extends
          any advantages or not to those who are parties to this
          relationship. Were we to ask the multitudes of the earth what the
          institution of marriage is worth, what the amount of blessing and
          salvation that accrues from it, to those who are parties to it,
          we should, no doubt, receive for a reply, "We do not know." A man
          marries a wife to keep his house, to do the drudgery to become a
          slave who shall do the labor about his place, and become the
          creature of his wants and wishes. Does he entertain any ideas of
          any value that pertains to the institution of marriage beyond
          this; if he does, it is but little. A great many men live in the
          world, and throughout all their lives they never appreciate the
          value of marriage in such a way as to ever induce them to marry;
          they think they can get along better in single life.
          How can we be led to an understanding, in a limited degree, of
          the many advantages that result to men and women who are
          honorably married? Why, look at the evil and the corruption, and
          consequent wretchedness that curse the condition of that broad
          margin of women that never are made to feel the responsibility,
          comforts and blessings resulting from a pure, and healthy, and
          virtuous marriage. Where is this state of things to be found? In
          every Christian community that I know anything about. It is the
          root of that festering corruption that is eating out the core and
          vital energies, and sapping the foundation of life in the race of
          man. It is found in every community where it is declared that a
          man shall marry one wife only, and it shall be considered a
          virtue; but to marry a second wife while the first wife is alive,
          is considered a crime and punishable by confinement in prison, or
          the payment of a fine, because it is a sin. What, this in a
          Christian land? Yes, this in a Christian land! Christianity of
          the most approved kind is advocated where it exists. In the same
          thoroughfare the victims of corruption and vicious passion, and
          the devotees of Christianity jostle against each other. In the
          same locality edifices, whose lofty towers point to heaven, and
          wherein are held sacred the paraphernalia of Christian worship
          casts its lengthening shadows over the dens of corruption and
          crime, where the victims of passion and unhallowed lust live to
          drag out a miserable existence; in the reeking corruption which
          is the result of their own sins. The religious sanctuary and the
          brothel flourish together; they have their development there; in
          that land we see woman in her most wretched condition. We first
          see her in the morning of her life, innocent and pure--innocent
          as innocence itself, pure as the spirit that comes from God. In
          this condition we see her enter upon her life's journey. We meet
          with her when she has progressed, when she has trod far in the
          path of folly, degradation, wretchedness, and sin; but she is
          innocent no more. Are the blessings of home extended around her
          any more? No. Has she the blessings of the warm sympathy of kind
          friends any more? No; they are frigid and cold; the warm heart
          gushing out the blessings of friendship is closed against her;
          she is not fit to be associated with any more; she is unfit to be
          welcomed to the society of her more fortunate sisters; and,
          consequently, she is not welcome to return to a pure and better
          life, could a disposition be awakened in her to do so, and she
          seeks for the means of prolonging that worthless life as best she
          can find them. If she carries personal charms, they are to feed
          the wishes and satiate the appetite of the gloating libertine;
          for he will give her money. When those charms have faded from her
          form--when youth is passed and followed by decrepid old age, she
          becomes the loathsome thing that no one claims or desires, for
          which none manifests any warm sympathy and affectionate regard.
          This is the fate of a class of women who were born pure and
          innocent as you, my sisters, were born, situated as you were,
          bearing the same relationship to high heaven by creation as you
          bear, yet she drags out her miserable existence to her resting
          place, the grave, when death terminates her suffering and
          wretched existence; no father was there, no mother was there, no
          kind sister to weep over her departure, no bother had regard for
          her, no kindred relationship to pay so much as the tribute of a
          single tear on the spot where her frail dust found its last
          resting place.
          This is the unwept, friendless fat of an extensive class of our
          erring sisters. What do we call them? Oh, she is merely "a common
          woman on the street," "prostitute," which means a woman, created
          by and bearing the image of God our Heavenly Father--a woman
          prostituted to become the victim of passion--passion unhallowed,
          impure passion in man who should have guarded her virtue with the
          most scrupulous care, with the most vigilant watchfulness,--man
          who should ever have recognized in her his sister, who should
          have regarded her as the personification of the purity and
          innocence of heaven itself, and who should never have made her
          the victim of his unholy passion. But she has fallen, and this
          terminates her wretched career. If she leaves an offspring, the
          vile stain of bastardy is attached to it, and her children are
          cast out of society, like their disgraced mother; they are
          discarded and shunned by what is called refined and Christian
          society; no paternal provisions are made for them, no paternal
          care and anxiety is cherished in relation to them. The state only
          sees in them, if males, prospective soldiers, who for a little
          pay are marshaled to fight its battles, and bleed and die upon
          the battle field. If any of them happened to be brave, can
          venture further and kill more than his associates, the
          probability is that he will gather to himself the honor, and the
          glory, and respect which his frail mother failed to secure.
          This is the most favorable termination of the earthly career of
          that class of unfortunate women and their children. I appeal to
          you, who are honorable wives and mothers, if you do not think
          there is real, unmitigated misery in this? Or do you think that
          it is merely something of my picturing? I am not here to treat
          you to empty romance. The tithing of all the misery,
          wretchedness, and crime that exist among the female sex, or our
          race, in the great Christian cities and heathen cities of the
          world, cannot be told; it would be vain for me to undertake to
          tell it all. I have instanced what I have, that you who are wives
          and mothers may see something of what you have been saved from,
          by being blessed with the opportunity of becoming honorably
          married. You are saved from all the wretchedness which
          characterizes the life and death of your unfortunate sisters.
          Does marriage possess any value, then? Would it not be a very
          good thing if the blessings arising from it, which you enjoy,
          could be extended to all? Why is it not so? Because monogamic
          Christianity says it shall not be extended to all. This
          Christianity is like the prophets bed, "shorter than that a man
          can stretch himself on it; and the covering narrower than that he
          can drop himself in it." I do not know that the prophet thought
          anything of Christianity as it now exists in the world, although
          this figure is very apt in its fitness to it. Comparing monogamic
          Christianity with the prophet's covering, it may be of a fine
          texture and good, as far as it goes, but it is decidedly too
          small. This is unquestionably the fault with a Christianity that
          does not extend the mantle of salvation to all who should be the
          recipients of its blessings. If all men and all women in a
          community were honorably married, you can readily understand one
          thing, that there would be no prostitution of women in that
          community, there would be an end of the corruption of man in that
          community, there would be no illegitimacy there. You can see,
          then, that it is only a question of advantages resulting from a
          pure marriage to all the inhabitants of any community, who can be
          blessed by such an institution of marriage; only introduce this,
          and the cause of all this sin and moral and physical degeneracy
          would have an end.
          "But then," says one, "is it right?" "We should have no
          objections to a plural marriage if we could only believe that it
          was right." How in heaven's name you would have to feel, to feel
          that it is wrong, I cannot imagine. You say that when one wife is
          married to a man, there is in that transaction nothing but what
          is religious; nothing but what is godly, healthy, pure and good;
          it is good enough to go to church with; it is something you can
          pray about; you can have it sanctified by the presence of the
          priest. It is sacred; it is so commendable that the most
          fastidious will hardly blush at the idea of a man's marrying one
          wife. He who marries one wife is considered an honorable man, and
          his wife finds a place among honorable women, and their children
          are honored upon the same plane that is secured to them by the
          character and standing of their honored parents in the community.
          They have their entry into society; it smiles upon them and
          extends to them its patronage, and their path is the path of
          honor from the time they open their infant eyes and gaze upon the
          surrounding objects in the midst of which life to them has a
          beginning, and though all the subsequent stages of the lengthened
          way. These blessings come to them because their parents were
          honorably married and kept sacredly the vows that made them
          husband and wife. Their marriage was virtuous and just. What a
          pity it is that this state of things could not be extended to
          all. I allude to this single marriage because I want you,
          Latter-day Saints, that are before me to-day, to begin to think,
          if you never have, to begin to reason, if you never have, that
          you may know and understand, if it is only to a limited extent,
          the reasons that exist why marriage is a pure, holy, and saving
          Says one, "The Bible says it is." But suppose the Bible did not
          say so, would that make any difference? If a woman were
          associated in the relationship of wife with an honorable man who
          kept his marriage vow, would it change the fact that there would
          be purity, innocence, truthfulness, and virtue in this that could
          not be found elsewhere--that could not occur without the same
          intimate relationship between man and woman--aside from the
          covenant that makes them man and wife. 
          We say, then, if this is the reason why in Heaven's wisdom it was
          ordained that man and woman should be married, it was simply to
          regulate the actions of man and woman in the most sacred, holy,
          high, and responsible relationships that exist between them, to
          preserve in man and woman the fountain of life in purity, that
          there might be given to earth a people in purity, and free from
          the taint of inherent corruption. How do I know that? Because
          that it only requires the careful and continued observance of the
          law of marriage, as God has revealed it, to preserve man and
          woman in purity.
          Then what bearing has a pure marriage upon the interest of the
          world that it should be necessary to introduce it as one of the
          leading features in the great work of God, developed and
          established in this our day for the prosecution of his will and
          purposes in the salvation of mankind? Has it any bearing at all
          upon the purity of man and upon the race? From the little
          reflection that I have bestowed upon the matter, I have learned
          to regard it as the world's great necessity--the great necessity
          of the race to-day, and it is God's greatest necessity in
          reference to the salvation of the world, and to the development
          of His universal empire of peace and righteousness over all the
          earth. Why? Because I have learned that there has been, and that
          there is still in existence, operating and producing its deadly
          effects, a system of physical degeneracy that is telling
          fearfully upon the history of the race.
          The Bible tells us that men used to reach a longevity that
          extended to near a thousand years; this was near six thousand
          years ago. To say that this is not true would be to question the
          validity of the Bible, and I would not dare to do that, however
          presumptuous I may be in a thousand other things. We are
          descendants of that same race who enjoyed the blessing, if it was
          a blessing, of an extended longevity; yet the statistics of
          to-day relating to the average life of the human race show that
          it extends to a fraction over a quarter of a century. Should
          anybody be alarmed at this? If they not know the causes which
          have led to it they will not be; but if they have a knowledge
          sufficient to understand that if the race has so degenerated,
          physically, in five thousand years that the term of a man's life
          is reduced from near a thousand years to a quarter of a century,
          the question would be awakened in their minds as to how narrow a
          margin of time is left for the continuation of our race on the
          earth before it becomes entirely extinct--that there will not be
          a man, woman, or child to awaken the cheerless condition of the
          desolate earth with the music of their voices and the light of
          their smiles. They have ceased to be.
          It used to be told us when we were children that the world was
          coming to an end. We thought it was coming to an end; that
          something was about to be revealed from somewhere that would burn
          it up. We see that the world is actually approaching desolation,
          to a point beyond which it would not be possible for human life
          to be extended. Is there nothing alarming in this? To me there
          is. I pore over, in my own mind, what my prospects are as a
          servant of God. I have entered upon this work, which we
          denominate the work of God, and which comprises the building up
          of the kingdom of God and the extension of the government of God
          over all the earth, carrying with it the blessings of the rule of
          righteousness and peace, and it promises that I am going to be a
          prince and a ruler over countless millions of intelligent beings
          like myself. Where are they all coming from? Why, they will be
          your children. That cannot be; for as the human race is fast
          wearing to an end, there would not any of my children be left in
          a few generations more. You are, no doubt, mathematicians enough
          to see this. I give the Lord credit in my feelings for having
          known this long before I did; and hence I say that plural
          marriage is the great necessity of the age, because it is a means
          that God has introduced to check the physical corruption and
          decline of our race; to stop further contributions to the already
          fearful aggregate of corruption that has been developed as the
          result of sin in man and woman. What will that do? It will take
          off a great tax from the recuperative energies of the race by
          relieving them from the necessity of contending with increasing
          corruption beyond its present limits; that man may begin to live
          until he attains to the age of a tree, as he lived before he
          first began to sin and violate the laws of his being. It is to
          effect this that the Lord has introduced plural marriage. "But,"
          says one, "why do you not prove it from the Bible?" You can read
          the Bible yourselves. I want to know, see, read, and understand,
          as it is evinced in the physical condition of the race that these
          are truths, whether the books refer to them or not. If there was
          no revelation to reach us from foreign quarters, it is a
          revelation that is before our eyes; its truth is demonstrated
          within the circle of our own being--within the narrow limits of
          our own observation it is made plain, and we should understand
          and comprehend. When we know this, then we know what the Bible
          may say with regard to polygamy being true, because we find the
          evidence of it in truth itself. That is what polygamy is worth.
          It is simply an extension of pure marriage to all the social
          elements in the community man and woman, that is all.
          Who is it that says there is licentiousness connected with plural
          marriage? It is the libertine; that man that is corrupt himself;
          who has worshipped at the shrine of passion; whose passion
          clamors in his corrupt soul for victims. He dreams of it and
          talks of it; and because the Saints believe in a plurality of
          wives, he thinks there must certainly be a lack of moral purity
          there--virtue must be easy with the people that have more than
          one wife.
          What do you think they have found out? After making experiments
          that have turned out rather futile, they have found out that with
          all their mistaken notions of their deluded fellow-citizens in
          the mountains, the virtue of woman and the sanctity of the
          marriage relationship cannot be invaded with impunity--it is
          guarded with jealousy. The same men that were brave in coming
          over the plains, and energetic in making the roads and in
          building the bridges, etc., are still here, and continue to be
          brave. They have not dared so much in the past that they will
          stop daring now.
          Are you going to say something in support of plural marriage? No.
          I do not wish anybody to tell that I have said a word by way of
          supporting and sustaining plural marriage. Are you ashamed of it?
          No. Do you love it? Yes, I love it because it is true, and stands
          alone, without my aid. "What are you talking about it for, then?"
          That you may understand the truth and know its value, and secure
          to yourselves the blessings that only can accrue from the
          knowledge of the truth. That doctrine is safe and can take care
          of itself; and if you make an application of the truth to
          yourselves, it will take care of you; it will secure you from
          corruption, wretchedness, and death, and give you life and
          immortality; while others will still sink under the accumulating
          weight of corruption, until they go down to hell.
          "But," says one, "I have been looking, but I have not seen much
          change that has taken place in consequence of the introduction of
          polygamy." You are not a very close observer, perhaps. When the
          first edition of Federal officers came out here, we had hardly
          made a beginning in practical plurality of wives; however, it was
          awful times for them; they could only once in a while see a
          woman, and when they did see one, they inquired who she was. "O,
          she is Elder such a one's wife." "Who is that woman over yonder?"
          "She is brother so and so's wife." "Who is that woman that is
          crossing the street?" "She is Bishop such a one's wife." "O, the
          devil, the women are all married out here." They begin to look
          round for a peculiar kind of institution that flourishes so well
          in Christendom, where such prevail, where they make ample
          provisions for the gratification of lustful passion; no odds how
          foul, black, and damning in its consequences, still it can find
          its gratification at those favored institutions. Those Federal
          gentlemen began to look for similar accommodations in Utah; but
          instead of finding them they found school houses and houses for
          the public worship of God, dedicated to the best interests of
          humanity, for the improvement of the condition of our race. Their
          peculiar institutions they could not find here, and they could
          not stay; they went to Washington, and there they began to send
          up awful howls about the sins of Utah, and the necessity of
          active measures by the general government to chastise the Mormons
          in Utah.
          How far they have succeeded is evident. The great Buchanan war
          brought the flower of the army of the United States out here; the
          bran and shots were left behind. They came to correct the poor
          misguided Mormons. For making prostitutes of the women? No. There
          are plenty of them at home; but the Mormons make wives of them,
          and this awakened all their sense of horror. It is this that
          excites our friends in the east--because we think more and better
          of women than they do. That is the foundation of all the
          difficulty; they do not complain of us for any thing else now.
          When the C. V.'s from the west came out here they did not succeed
          any better. Then they thought they would try the negro. He got
          part way out here, got tired, and they turned him out. What they
          will do next to correct our morals is not for me to say. They may
          tell us that we ought to demolish our school houses and put up
          houses of assignation, and keep houses of accommodation, such as
          travellers can find in other countries. They are well pleased
          with our potatoes and johnny cake, but they would be still better
          pleased if we would have the other luxury.
          We fought our way to this country against all the hardships and
          obstacles that stood in our path and, through God's blessing, we
          have overcome them; we have cultivated the land and done the best
          that we could under the circumstances, and we have provided for
          ourselves and for our wives and children as well as we could, and
          we have been contented. If the husbands of Utah were poor, their
          wives were willing to share that poverty with them; they were
          willing to nibble a living from the same dry crust, out of the
          same stinted fare that we partook of, because they were our
          wives, and we regarded them as honorable and as good as
          ourselves, if they behaved as well. This our friends do not like.
          Our business here in the mountains is to develop a community in
          which man and woman shall find, through the extension of
          honorable, pure, just, and virtuous marriage, the legitimate
          position that Heaven ordained them to occupy as wives and
          mothers, husbands and fathers, and a response to every
          requirement of nature, without stepping aside from the path of
          virtue and honor.
          That is what God designed when he commenced this work--"Why did
          He not introduce it at the very commencement of this work?"
          Because He could not--because our ears were not open to hear
          it--our prejudices would not allow us to receive it. If I had
          been talked to about plurality of wives when I was baptized into
          the Church, the Lord may know, but I do not know what I would
          have done. I had to go wandering over the world preaching the
          Gospel years after, had to work longer than Jacob did for a wife
          to get myself in that state of mind that the Lord dare name the
          doctrine to me. We were not aware that any such a thing as plural
          marriage had to be introduced into the world; but the Lord said
          it after a while, and we obeyed the best we knew how, and, no
          doubt, made many crooked paths in our ignorance. We were only
          children, and the Lord was preparing us for an introduction to
          the principles of salvation. "What, the principles of salvation
          connected with marriage?" Yes; because they are nowhere else.
          "Will not our preaching save us, our going to Church, and our
          paying tithing?" People have been preaching, praying, paying
          tithes, building cathedrals and churches, and the deadly work of
          physical degeneracy is still going on until the race is nearly
          upon the brink of extinction. Christianity, as it now is, and has
          been for centuries, has proved entirely insufficient to stop the
          great evil--to check it in its fearful growth.
          The Lord understood this when he talked to the people of Nephi:
          He told them they should have but one wife, and concubines they
          should have none. Why would He not allow them to have concubines?
          I suppose it was because He delighted in the chastity of women.
          This was simply avowing His feeling with regard to that matter.
          Concubinage was displeasing in His sight. He left them at liberty
          to have a wife, but concubines they should have none; informing
          them that when He wanted His people to raise up seed unto Him,
          and if it was necessary they should have many wives He would
          command them. That is simply what He has done. He has commanded
          us. It is well enough now for the brethren and sisters who have
          been in practical polygamy for many years to begin to understand
          something of the nature and object of the institution, that they
          may not trade it off simply for admittance into the Union, or for
          anything whatever that may be offered for its exchange. However
          their enemies may plead to the contrary, the Saints are gathered
          together from all the world, that the provisions of a virtuous
          marriage may be extended to all the social element in the
          community, and that by this there should cease to be developed in
          that community the curse of woman's prostitution or man's
          corruption, and where mothers in Zion can make it their business
          to teach their children the way in which they should go; to
          implant in early childhood principles of truth; to lead them to
          God; to grow around the hearth like plants of righteousness, that
          the saying of the old preacher may be verified, "Train up a child
          in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart
          from it." 
          We are not a numerous people, but we are more numerous than when
          the Lord told Adam and Eve to be fruitful, and multiply and fill
          this their earthly inheritance with intellectual beings like
          themselves. How well that first pair succeeded is evidenced here
          to-day. We need not be discouraged, for we can count thousands
          that are pledged to this work, which is established to re-people
          the world, to fill the earth with virtuous, pure, and holy men
          and women. That is the work that devolves upon us. Should every
          woman be married? Every woman should be married for the same
          reasons that one woman is married, namely, to subserve the same
          high, healthy, and God-like objects of our being. And for the
          same high purpose should every man be married.
          There are certain facts of our existence which we cannot escape
          from. We are men and women. The very reason why I have spoken
          here to-day is that we are men and women; we have come here with
          men's and women's natures, passions, and appetites; and if we are
          ever saved in heaven, we shall be saved as men and women. Our
          business here is to save men and women by teaching them to live
          lives of purity. These are self-evident truths. When we count up
          the men and women that are in the world, we shall find a broad
          margin more of women than men; and there is a numerical
          difference in the sexes, as they are developed in our community
          and every other community. Women must be saved, if the task
          should devolve on a man to marry two or three of them, and treat
          them as honorable wives, bless them, and bless their children,
          provide for them, and teach them principles of purity. When we
          who made this feeble beginning in that matter can bear the
          struggle no longer, we will call around us our stalwart sons and
          daughters, and pledge them before high heaven to devote
          themselves for ever, and their children after them, to the great
          work of man's regeneration.
          Let us get the body improved first, that the spirit may live and
          dwell in a pure tabernacle. When this is done, we can go and
          cultivate the spirit as much as in needful. The world wants a
          religion that will address itself to this task, because it will
          enter into the relationship that exists between man and woman,
          that will purify them and establish within them the seed of
          eternal life. Let us pray always and never faint, and ask God to
          bless us in all that we do, and never do anything that is not
          sufficiently holy that we can ask God to bless; carrying the
          purity of Heaven's religion and ordained principles of salvation
          into every relationship of our lives, and let the Zion of our God
          extend forth upon all the earth from this point. What will become
          of the world? They will live in their corruption until they sink
          and die in it. Our blessings are to build up the kingdom of God
          in purity and in its perfection in these mountains. This is our
          work, and may God help us, is my prayer, in the name of the Lord
          Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / Heber
          C. Kimball, April 4, 1866
                           Heber C. Kimball, April 4, 1866
           Remarks by President Heber C. Kimball, made in the Tabernacle,
                        Great Salt Lake City, April 4, 1866.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          Self-preservation is the first great law of nature. It is true,
          whether it be applied to temporal or spiritual salvation. If a
          man does not try to save himself through the means which are
          provided in the Gospel, he cannot be saved. If people will not
          stop committing sin and learn to do better, my doing so will not
          benefit them. It would be just as reasonable to argue that I can
          eat, drink, breathe, and reflect for them. When a minister of the
          truth arises to address a congregation it aids him much when the
          people give their undivided attention to him; but when their
          attention is drawn off by some trifling interference that may
          occur in the house, their minds are closed to the effects of
          truth, and the spirit of the preacher is grieved, and so is the
          Spirit of the Lord. Paul says, "Let the prophets speak two or
          three, and let the others judge. If anything be revealed to
          another that sitteth by, let the first hold his peace. For ye may
          all prophecy one by one, that all may learn, and all may be
          comforted." "For God is not the author of confusion, but of
          peace, as in all the churches of the Saints."
          No one man knoweth everything, "But the manifestation of the
          Spirit is given to every man to profit withal;" "now there are
          diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit," "dividing to every
          man severally as he will." If we exercise upon the gifts we
          possess in simplicity as little children, striving to do good to
          one another, and to build up the kingdom of God upon the earth,
          then we shall be entitled to greater gifts and greater blessings.
          Let no man lay a snare for his neighbor because of the simplicity
          of his words, and because he reproves in the gate. If the truth,
          simply told, is unwelcome to people, it is because they are
          themselves guilty of sin unrepented of; and by this ye may know
          that ye need repentance.
          The faithful love the truth, though it may be told in the most
          simple manner; it is sweeter to them than honey or the honey
          comb; they are no more afraid of it than they would be afraid of
          eating a piece of good honey. And to the same extent that they
          love the truth plainly and simply told, do they hate a lie, and
          the more so when it is dressed up in the garb of truth to deceive
          the unwary. Truth is the sanctifier of those who love it and are
          guided by it, and will exalt them to the presence of God; while
          falsehood corrupts and destroys, or, to use a common scriptural
          figure, it lays the axe at the root of the tree. As the axe cuts
          down and destroys the fruitless trees that cumber the ground, so
          do wicked acts destroy and overthrow all who persist in them.
          Truth is an attribute of the nature of God. By it he is
          sanctified and glorified. Jesus Christ proceeded from his Father.
          He is called "His only begotten Son," and inherited germs of his
          Father's perfections and the attributes of his Father's nature,
          so that he sinned not. So with us; if the attributes of our
          nature become refined and regenerated by the truth, our offspring
          must inherit those perfections, more or less. Then, how essential
          it is that parents should, by living their religion, improve
          themselves for the improvement of their race. We, too, are the
          children of God, but we are the offspring in the flesh of fallen
          and degenerate parents, and we are prone to sin as the sparks fly
          upward; but by observing the truth, and by following the
          direction of the Holy Priesthood which has been restored in our
          day, we may overcome the evil that is within us and that is in
          the world, begin to improve and perfect the attributes of our
          nature, which are like the attributes of the nature of God, and
          lay the foundation of goodness and truth in our offspring.
          The devil was a liar from the beginning. Truth has no place in
          him; but it being a principle of power associated with all
          goodness, he hates it, and so do all his faithful followers. It
          is written, "And now, verily I say unto you, I was in the
          beginning with the Father, and am the first-born; and all those
          who are begotten through me are partakers of the glory of the
          same, and are the church of the First-born." "Truth is a
          knowledge of things as they are, and as they were, and as they
          are to come; and whatsoever is more or less than this is the
          spirit of that wicked one who was a liar from the beginning." He
          that keepeth the commandments of God receiveth truth and light
          until he is glorified in truth and knoweth all things. Truth is a
          principle of power, and is independent in that sphere in which
          God has placed it to act for itself, as well as intelligence
          also, otherwise there is no existence."
          Under President Young I have presided over the giving of
          endowments for the last fifteen years. Last Saturday there were
          over twenty persons in the house to receive their endowments.
          They came well recommended by their bishops as being worthy,
          good, and faithful members of the Church of Jesus Christ of
          Latter-day Saints. I had previously had an impression that many
          of the people were becoming lukewarm, and even cold, in the
          performance of some of their duties. After the company had gone
          through I gave them a lecture, and it came to me by the Spirit of
          God to try if my impression was correct or not. After instructing
          them that they must not lie, steal, nor bear false witness, etc.,
          I asked them how many of them prayed in their families, and it
          transpired that there were many who neglected their duties in
          this respect; yet they were all recommended by their bishops as
          good, faithful members of the Church of Christ. It made me think
          of the parable of the ten virgins, five foolish and five wise.
          Shall we thus cease to perform our duties, while the wicked are
          striving with all their power to introduce their wickedness in
          our community and into our families; while they are seeking to
          influence our wives and children to be disobedient to us and to
          God? Should we not rather be more faithful in the performance of
          every known duty, that God may hear us when we pray to him for
          strength to aid us to resist the encroachment of evil?
          The revelations which Joseph Smith has given to this people were
          given to him by Jesus Christ, the Savior of the world; and this
          people cannot be blessed if they lightly esteem any of them, but
          they will lose the Spirit, and sorrow and vexation will come into
          their families. The Lord designs that we shall be separate and
          distinct from every other people, and wishes to make us His
          peculiar people, and to raise up for himself a pure seed who will
          keep His law and walk in His statutes. For this purpose did He
          give the revelation on plurality of wives, as sacred a revelation
          as was ever given to any people, and fraught with greater
          blessings to us than we can possibly conceive of, if we do not
          abuse our privileges and commit sin. This doctrine is a holy and
          pure principle, in which the power of God for the regeneration of
          mankind is made manifest; but while it offers immense blessings,
          and is a source of immense power to God's people, it will bring
          sure and certain damnation to those who seek through its means to
          defile themselves with the daughters of Eve. All those who take
          wives from any other motive than to subserve the great purpose
          which God had in view in commanding his servants to take unto
          themselves many wives, will not be able to retain them. Wives are
          sealed to men by an everlasting covenant that cannot be broken,
          if the parties live faithfully before God, and perform with a
          single eye to his glory the duties of that sacred contract. Jesus
          Christ said to the Pharisees, when they tempted him upon the
          subject of a man's putting away his wife, "For the hardness of
          your heart Moses allowed you to give a bill of divorcement, but
          from the beginning of the creation it was not so." "What,
          therefore God hath joined together let no man put asunder."
          I speak of plurality of wives as one of the most holy principles
          that God ever revealed to man, and all those who exercise an
          influence against it, unto whom it is taught, man or woman will
          be damned, and they and all who will be influenced by them, will
          suffer the buffetings of Satan in the flesh; for the curse of God
          will be upon them, and poverty, and distress, and vexation of
          spirit will be their portion; while those who honor this and
          every sacred institution of heaven will shine forth as the stars
          in the firmament of heaven, and of the increase of their kingdom
          and glory there shall be no end. This will equally apply to Jew,
          Gentile, and Mormon, male and female, old and young.
          The words of the Lord to the Church, through Joseph the Prophet,
          in Sep., 1832, will apply very well to many now:--"And your minds
          in times past have been darkened because of unbelief, and because
          you have treated lightly the things you have received, which
          vanity and unbelief hath brought the whole Church under
          condemnation; and this condemnation resteth upon the children of
          Zion, even all, and they shall remain under this condemnation
          until they repent and remember the new covenant, even the Book of
          Mormon and the former commandments which I have given them, not
          only to say, but to do according to that which I have written,
          that they may bring forth fruit meet for their Father's kingdom,
          otherwise there remaineth a scourge and a judgment to be poured
          out upon the children of Zion; for shall the children of the
          kingdom pollute my holy land?" Unless we keep our families in
          order, and instruct our children to be faithful in keeping the
          commandments of God, not suffering our wives and children to
          speak lightly of the Priesthood of the Almighty, and of the holy
          order of marriage which He has revealed for a great purpose,--I
          say, unless we do this, God will visit our families with a
          scourge, and if they continue in their disobedience they will be
          removed out of their place, and their names will not be found on
          the record of the faithful. But, on the contrary, if we are
          righteous and keep faithfully all the commandments of God, we,
          with all that portion of our wives and children who also have
          been faithful, will go into the celestial inheritance prepared
          for us in the presence of our God. Will the unfaithful,
          disobedient, and unbelieving of our families enter with us into
          the celestial kingdom? They will not. The Lord said to Ezekiel,
          "Son of man, the house of Israel to me has become dross." So with
          the unbelieving and disobedient of our families, and of this
          people; they will be separated from the pure silver, to occupy a
          place in the mansions of our Father according to their worth.
          If our wives would remember and keep faithfully the covenant they
          have made, they would observe the laws of their husbands, and
          teach their children to honor every law of God, and to love,
          honor, and obey their earthly father. If I keep my covenants, I
          shall be saved in the presence of God; if I violate them, I shall
          be damned; and so it will be with my family; and what applies to
          me in this respect will apply to all.
          Let us carry out the great purposes of God, and be separate from
          the ungodly. "Woe unto him that has the law given; yea, that has
          all the commandments of God, like unto us, and that transgresseth
          them, and that wasteth the days of his probation, for awful is
          his state." "And woe unto the deaf, that will not hear, for they
          shall perish; woe unto the blind, that will not see, for they
          shall perish also; woe unto the liar, for he shall be thrust down
          to hell; woe unto the murderer, who deliberately killeth, for he
          shall die; woe unto them who commit whoredoms for they shall be
          thrust down to hell; and woe unto them who die in their sins, for
          they shall go to their place and suffer the wrath of God."
          May God bless the righteous; but the men or women who raise their
          voices or use their influence against that holy order of plural
          marriage will be cursed, and they will wither away, for they have
          undertaken to fight against God. "For, behold, the day cometh
          that shall burn as an oven, and all the proud, yea, and all that
          do wickedly, shall be stubble; and the day that cometh shall burn
          them up, saith the Lord of hosts, and it shall leave them neither
          root nor branch."
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 /
          Brigham Young, April 29, 1866
                            Brigham Young, April 29, 1866
          Remarks by President Brigham Young, made in the Tabernacle, Great
                           Salt Lake City, April 29, 1866.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          You have heard what Elder Charles S. Kimball has said this
          afternoon relative to the general belief of the people in the old
          countries,--That Brigham Young reads all letters before they
          leave this county, and if any are not written to suit him, they
          are destroyed by his order! In this way they account for so few
          letters reaching the members of the Church in distant lands from
          their friends here in Utah. I will now make a public request that
          the Saints hereafter cease to bring their letters to me, if there
          are any that have ever done such a thing; and I also request the
          postmasters throughout the Territory to stop sending all foreign
          letters to me for my inspection previous to mailing for abroad;
          that is, if they have ever done such a thing; and for this simple
          reason, that I have so much to do that I cannot possibly pay
          attention to such an extensive amount of reading. If any of you,
          or if any of the people in any part of the Territory have ever
          sent letters to me to read, previous to sending them to their
          friends abroad, be so kind as to take notice and cease to do this
          thing from this time henceforth. If any postmaster has ever sent
          me a single letter to read belonging to any person--Jew or
          Gentile, Saint or sinner--I request him never to do so again; for
          I have such an extensive correspondence of my own, that it is a
          very great labor for me to read and answer what I am obliged to
          do in my business and calling. People who suppose that I can see
          and read the foreign correspondence of this whole community, give
          me credit for an amount of physical and mental endurance which I
          do not possess.
          Brother Charles has strongly requested those who have friends in
          the old country to write to them, and I would make the same
          request, that you write often to your fathers and mothers, and
          brothers and sisters and friends, and acquaintances and
          neighbors, whom you have left behind in those old countries. Tell
          them the truth with regard to the people here, and with regard to
          the country, and when you, who are going to that country, arrive
          there, tell the people the truth.
          In this country there is ample opportunity for people to get
          rich, to gather up property and accumulate and store up wealth,
          and the minds of the people are so occupied in this labor that
          they do not take time to write to their friends, and many not
          even to fulfill their promises to write. Some of those who have
          borrowed money of their friends in the old countries, and
          promised to work when they got to America and send it back again
          to them, have forgotten to do so. I am sorry to be obliged to say
          this. If I could have my way, every man who professes to be a
          Saint would act like a Saint. However, we are trying to be
          Saints. We have embraced the Gospel of the Son of God; we have
          embraced a marvellous work--a work which is a great wonder to all
          people. As the Prophet has said, "Therefore behold, I will
          proceed to do a marvellous work among this people, even a
          marvellous work and a wonder; for the wisdom of their wise men
          shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be
          The brethren have been testifying to the truth of this work, and
          there is not a man or a woman on this earth who receives the
          spirit of the Gospel but what can testify to its truth. We are
          the witnesses of this great work which the Lord has commenced in
          the Latter days. Were you to ask me how it was that I embraced
          "Mormonism," I should answer, for the simple reason that it
          embraces all truth in heaven and on earth, in the earth under the
          earth, and in hell, if there be any truth there. There is no
          truth outside of it; there is no good outside of it; there is no
          virtue outside of it; there is nothing holy and honorable outside
          of it; for, wherever these principles are found among all the
          creations of God, the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and his order and
          Priesthood, embrace them.
          When we talk about making sacrifices for this work, the word to
          me is without meaning; for if a man desires to get a good name--a
          good character--if he wishes to make fast friends, if he wishes
          wealth, comfort, joy, and peace in all of his life here on the
          earth, let him embrace the truth and then live it. When the
          unbeliever has a realizing sense of his own condition, he lays
          down on his bed in sorrow, he wishes things were a little
          different; he lays down in sorrow, and wakes up in doubt, to live
          every hour and minute through the day in anxiety. There may be
          hours and minutes in which people forget themselves; but, when
          their minds dwell upon their situation and being in life, they
          are in doubt, they are in anxiety, darkness, and ignorance; they
          do not know who they are, what they are on the earth for; they
          know nothing of their pre-existence, or comparatively little of
          their present existence, only that they are here in the world,
          and by-and-by they will die and leave the world. Where they will
          go when they leave the world, they know not, and there are many
          who do not care. Some strive to be infidels to a great deal of
          that which is true, to that which it would be to their best
          interest to believe and know.
          If you have truth, you have got what is called "Mormonism," or,
          more properly, the Gospel of life and salvation. It is here, and
          it is nowhere else to the same extent that it is in the doctrine
          that this people say they have embraced. Do they know it all? In
          comparison to what we have yet to learn of the things of God, we
          are but babes and sucklings in the knowledge of God our Father,
          in the knowledge of his work and of the labor and the mission of
          our Lord Jesus Christ, that we profess to be so familiar with. If
          it can be said of us that we are children in the knowledge of
          God, we have progressed tolerably well.
          It has been remarked this afternoon how difficult it is for our
          Elders to go forth and contend with the learning of the age. You
          heard the few remarks regarding the religions of the day, and the
          idea that generally prevails in Christian countries that it
          requires men to be qualified, and learned, and eloquent to stand
          before the people to act as religious teachers. I will give you
          the reason why this is so. When a false theory has to be
          maintained, it requires to be set forth with much care; it
          requires study and learning, and cunning sophistry to gild over a
          falsehood and give it the semblance of truth, and make it
          plausible and congenial to the feelings of the people; but the
          most simple and unlearned person can tell you the truth. A child
          can tell you the truth, in child-like language, while falsehood
          requires the lawyer and the priest to tell it to make it at all
          plausible; it requires a scholastic education to make falsehood
          pass for truth. Anciently, all the people, and the publicans, who
          heard Jesus, justified God, being baptised with the baptism of
          John. But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God
          against themselves, not being baptized of him. When a simple,
          honest hearted man, sent of God with the truth to the world,
          shall question the most learned upholders of false theories, the
          gilding falls off, and falsehood, in all its deformity, stands
          naked and exposed. I have scores of times read from the Bible,
          and the people would declare that it was not the Christian Bible,
          but the "Mormon" Bible I Was reading in; and to convince them to
          the contrary, would have to read the title page.
          Men are educated to promulgate and sustain false theories to make
          money, and to create and uphold powerful sects. "And they teach
          with their learning, and deny the Holy Ghost, which giveth
          utterance." "Because of pride, and because of false teachers, and
          false doctrine, their churches have become corrupted; and their
          churches are lifted up, because of pride they are puffed up. They
          rob the poor, because of their fine sanctuaries; they rob the
          poor, because of their fine clothing; and they persecute the meek
          and the poor in heart because in their pride they are puffed up."
          And all this because the fathers transgressed the laws, changed
          the ordinances, and broke the everlasting covenant delivered unto
          them. The truth is easily understood, and as easily told. The
          agriculturist and the mechanic can tell the truth, and become
          efficient ministers of it, by living faithfully in accordance
          with what they know of the Gospel; for in this way they obtain
          the Holy Ghost, which giveth utterance. Education is a good
          thing, and blessed is the man who has it, and can use it for the
          dissemination of the Gospel without being puffed up with pride.
          "But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound
          the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to
          confound the things which are mighty; and base things of the
          world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen; yea, and
          things which are not, to bring to naught things which are: that
          no flesh should glory in His presence."
          However good and useful a classical education may be in the
          possession of a good and wise man, yet it is not essentially
          necessary for him to have it to tell the simple truth which is
          given to mankind by the revelations of God because it can be told
          by the simple and the unlearned. But if the profession of a
          lawyer is chosen by any person he needs to be educated in all the
          learning of the age to be successful; for it is a hard thing for
          him to make a man appear innocent before a jury of his countrymen
          whom he knows to be guilty. It is a hard matter to make a jury of
          men endowed, not with great learning perhaps, but with hard
          sense, believe that white is black, and that black is white, as
          the case may be, to present the truth in such a way that they
          will believe it as a lie, and a lie in such a way that they will
          believe it as a truth. It requires a lawyer--a man who is well
          schooled in all that men know, to make things appear what they
          really are not.
          That which will apply to law in this case will apply to a false
          religion. We take our young men who have been brought up in this
          community and I care not whether they can read a chapter in the
          Bible or not, if they will repent and seek diligently for the
          Spirit of the Lord, and send them out into the world to preach
          the Gospel, and if they are faithful, they will be able, ere
          long, by the blessing of God, to confound the great and the wise
          of the age in matters of theology. "I thank thee, O Father Lord
          of Heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the
          wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes."
          It was observed here this afternoon that it requires our boys to
          go into the world to preach the truth to know that "Mormonism" is
          true. The older portion of this community embraced the truth
          through the conviction of it, and prayed unto the Lord for the
          light of it, and they received the testimony of the Spirit of
          God; but our children do not know the greatness of their
          blessings and privileges. They are entitled to the Spirit of the
          Gospel from their mothers wombs; they have it with them all the
          time; they are born in it. We say that they are rude, that they
          are rough and unmanageable, etc.; they do not know that they
          possess the light of the Holy Spirit until they go out into the
          world and learn the great contrast--see the blackness of night,
          the thick darkness of error that has settled down like a great
          pall upon the moral and religious world. They hear their fathers
          pray, and they hear the Apostles and Prophets preach, but they
          cannot know that "Mormonism" is true for themselves until they
          have had the privilege of being placed in circumstances to
          exercise faith for themselves, and to pay to God for themselves
          for testimony and knowledge. Then they obtain the power of the
          Holy Spirit, which awakens their senses, and they know for
          themselves that God lives, for he hears and answers their
          I could say something encouraging to parents, if they would heed.
          Let the father and mother, who are members of this Church and
          kingdom, take a righteous course, and strive with all their might
          never to do a wrong, but to do good all their lives; if they have
          one child or one hundred children, if they conduct themselves
          towards them as they should, binding them to the Lord by their
          faith and prayers, I care not where those children go, they are
          bound up to their parents by an everlasting tie, and no power of
          earth or hell can separate them from their parents in eternity;
          they will return again to the fountain from whence they sprang. I
          am sorry that this people are worldly-minded; that they are in
          their feelings and affections glued to the world so much as they
          are. I am sorry to hear Elders of Israel use words, and manifest
          anger and impatience that are unbecoming. Men who are vessels of
          the holy Priesthood, who are charged with words of eternal life
          to the world, should strive continually in their words and
          actions and daily deportment to do honor to the great dignity of
          their calling and office as ministers and representatives of the
          Most High. We are trying to be Saints, and many of the brethren
          sin, and repent, and ask forgiveness, and intend to do better in
          the future, and perhaps to-morrow they lose their temper and
          swear at their oxen, etc. They love the world, and covet their
          fine horses; their affections are upon them, and upon their
          farms, upon their property, their houses and possessions, and in
          the same ratio that this is the case, the Holy Spirit of God--the
          spirit of their calling--forsakes them, and they are overcome
          with the spirit of the evil one, so that they have not strength
          to resist the weaknesses of their nature; and they swear and take
          the name of God in vain, are impatient with their families and
          often abuse them. Such things as these should not be among the
          servants of the Most High.
          If we have possessions, it is because the Lord has given them to
          us, and it is our duty to see that everything we have is devoted
          to the advancement of truth, virtue, and holiness, to beauty and
          excellence; to redeem the earth, and adorn it with beautiful
          habitations, and orchards, and gardens, and farms, and cities,
          until it shall become like the garden of Eden. All that we
          possess belongs to the Lord, and we are the Lord's, and we should
          never lust after that over which he has made us stewards, but we
          should use it profitably to the upbuilding of the Zion of our
          God, to send the Gospel to all the world, and to gather and feed
          the poor. I am thankful that I am able to say these few words.
          May God bless you. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / John
          Taylor, April. 7, 1866
                             John Taylor, April. 7, 1866
                              OUR RELIGION IS FROM GOD.
             Remarks by Elder John Taylor, made in the Tabernacle, Great 
                           Salt Lake City, April. 7, 1866.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          It is good for the Saints to meet together; it is good to reflect
          upon the work of God; it is good to be in possession of His
          blessings; it is a great privilege to enjoy the light of eternal
          truth, and to be delivered from the darkness, the error, the
          confusion, and the iniquity that prevails generally throughout
          the world. There are but very few men in the world who can
          realize the blessings which we enjoy unless their minds are
          enlightened by the Spirit of the living God. There are, in fact,
          comparatively few among the Saints who realize their true
          position, and who can comprehend correctly the blessings and
          privileges that they are in possession of; for men can only grasp
          these things as they are enlightened by the spirit of truth, by
          the spirit of revelation--by the Holy Ghost--which has been
          imparted to the Saints by the laying on of hands, and through
          their obedience to the principles of the everlasting Gospel. If
          men are in the dark in relation to any of these principles, it is
          because they do not live their religion; because they do not walk
          according to that light which has been given to them; because, as
          we have heard here, they do not pray sufficiently, they do not
          deny themselves of evil, and cleave close enough to the
          principles of eternal truth. The Gospel is calculated to lead us
          on from truth to truth, and from intelligence to intelligence,
          until that Scripture will be fulfilled which declares that we
          shall see as we are seen and know as we are known, until one will
          not have to say to another, know ye the Lord, but all shall know
          Him from the least unto the greatest, until the light and
          intelligence of God shall beam forth upon all, and all shall bask
          in the sunlight of eternal truth.
          It is a blessing to have the privilege of meeting together in our
          general Conference, where the Authorities of the Church can
          assemble from different parts of the Territory, and of the earth,
          to learn the law of God, to transact business pertaining to His
          Church and kingdom, and to build up and establish righteousness
          on the earth. We cannot realize the extent of the blessings that
          we enjoy. We are situated differently from any other people under
          the face of the heavens. There is no people, no government, no
          kingdom, no nation, no assembly of people, civil religious,
          political, or otherwise, that enjoy the blessings that we are in
          possession of this day; for whilst others are groping in the dark
          and laboring in a state of uncertainty in relation to the
          position that they occupy, whether political or religious, we are
          free from any surmises or doubts concerning these matters. As it
          regards our political status, we are well acquainted with that;
          we know the destiny of this Church and kingdom; we know the
          position that we occupy towards God and towards the world; we
          know that the Lord will accomplish His own purposes; and having
          this knowledge, we rest perfectly easy in relation to the result.
          We know that the kingdom of God, which is established among us,
          will continue to spread increase, and extend, until it covers the
          earth; and we know that all the plotting, and machinations, and
          designs, and combinations of men and devils will not be able to
          stop it in its progress; but as it has begun to roll forth, its
          speed will continue to accelerate until it has accomplished all
          for which it is designed of God, and until the kingdoms of this
          world shall become the kingdoms of our God and His Christ, and He
          shall reign with universal empire over this earth, and to Him
          every knee shall bow and every tongue confess. Therefore, we have
          no trembling, no feeling of fear, no anxiety or care as to the
          result. All that we have to care about in relation to these
          matters is, that we, individually and collectively, do our duty;
          that we maintain our integrity before God; that we honor our
          Priesthood and our calling; that we pursue a course that shall at
          all times receive the smiles and approbation of the Most High,
          and then as to the result we care not for we know what the result
          will be.
          As it regards our religious status, we feel just the same in
          relation to that, for everything is connected with our religion
          and our God. We are not indebted to any church in existence for
          the position which we occupy, nor for the intelligence we are in
          possession of. We have no need to trace our authority through the
          Popes, or through any other medium, we care nothing about them.
          We do not need either to go to the Roman or to the Greek Church
          to find out whether we are right or wrong, where our religion
          commenced, and whether we are placed on the right or on the wrong
          foundation. We are not under the necessity of searching the
          Jewish records, or any other records, in relation to these
          matters. We are not indebted to any of the schools, academies, or
          systems of divinity, or theology, or any of the religious systems
          extant, nor to any of the heathen nations. There is no nation,
          people, kingdom, government; no religious or political authority
          of any kind that is of an earthly nature, that we have to go to
          in relation to this matter. We disclaim the whole of them; claim
          no affinity to any of them; are not of them nor from them; and,
          consequently, so far as they are concerned, we are perfectly
          independent of them. Our religion came from God; it is a
          revelation from the Most High; it is that everlasting Gospel
          which John saw an angel bring to be preached in all the earth,
          and to every people, nation, kindred, and tongue, crying with a
          loud voice, fear God and give glory to Him, for the hour of His
          judgment is come.
          Then God is the author of our religion; He has revealed it from
          the heavens; He has sent His holy angels for that purpose, who
          communicated it to Joseph Smith and others. Having restored the
          everlasting Gospel, He has sent it forth to all the world, and
          those men who have delivered that Gospel to us have received it
          by revelation directly from God, and have been ordained by that
          authority. If God has not spoken, if the heavens have not been
          opened, if the angels of God have not appeared, then we have no
          religion--it is all a farce; for, as I have said before, we claim
          no kindred, no affinity, or relationship with them--God forbid
          that we should, we do not want it. This, then, is the platform we
          stand upon; this is the position that we occupy before God; for
          this is God's work that we are engaged in. If He has given any
          authority in the last days to mankind, we are in possession of
          that authority; and if He has not, then we have no authority, nor
          any true religion, nor any true hope. I shall not this morning
          enter into all the arguments concerning these matters. All that I
          can say to you is what Paul said in his day, "Ye are His
          witnesses of these things, and so is the Holy Ghost, whom God
          hath given to them that obey Him."
          Brethren, is your religion true, and do you know it? (Voices,
          yes). Yes, you know and realize it; it is written in living,
          indelible characters on your hearts, which nothing can remove. We
          are living witnesses of the truth of God and the revelations
          which He has given to His people in these last days. Well, then,
          we are not concerned about what the nations of the world can do
          against it, for they will crumble and totter, and thrones will be
          cast down, as it is written in the Scriptures. The empires of the
          earth may be dissolved, and all the nations may crumble to
          pieces, and wars, and pestilence, and famine may stalk through
          the earth; this is not our affair; they are not our nations; they
          are not God's nations. Religionists may squabble, and contend,
          and quarrel, and live in difficulty, doubt, and uncertainty in
          relation to their affairs; but that is none of our business, it
          is entirely their own affair. There may be written upon the whole
          world, religious and political, "Mene, mene, tekel, upharsin."
          (Thou art weighed in the balances, and art found wanting) What is
          that to us? It is none of our affair. We are not associated with
          them; our interest is not bound up with them; they have nothing
          which we can sustain. In relation to all these matters we feel
          perfectly easy. If war goes forth and desolates the nations; if
          confusion exist among religious denominations; and if they should
          continue to act as they are doing, like perfect fools, it is
          their own business. The Pope may tremble on his throne, and be
          afraid that France or some other power will not sustain him; it
          is not our affair; we feel perfectly easy and tranquil; all is
          right with us, for we are in the hands of God, and it is his
          business to take care of his Saints; therefore, we feel perfectly
          easy, quiet, and peaceable in relation to all these matters.
          Would they try to injure us? Yes. They never tried anything else,
          and we are not indebted to them for any thing which we enjoy. Did
          any of them help us along in our religious matters? Who are we
          indebted to in this world? Is there a religious society under the
          heavens that we are indebted to for any ideas or intelligence
          which we possess? Not one. Is there any priest in Christendom
          that has helped us forward in the least in our religious career?
          Not one. You cannot find one. Are we indebted to anybody for our
          political status? We are not. Who is there that helps us? There
          has never been a man yet who dared, at any time, to advocate our
          principles and rights in the legislative halls of this or any
          other nation; there has never been a man who has had the honesty,
          and truthfulness, and integrity to do it; they dare not do it,
          because it is unpopular. We dare advocate our principles, and God
          dare help us; and if we enjoy any rights, and privileges, and
          peace--if there are any blessings of any kind that we enjoy--we
          derive them from our Heavenly Father, and we are not indebted to
          any power, government, rule, or authority, religious, political,
          or otherwise, throughout the whole of this habitable globe, for
          any blessings or privileges we enjoy, excepting sometimes, by a
          little persecution they help us to be a little more united,
          that's all; and we do not thank them for this, for it does not
          come with their good will. If their lies shall make the truth of
          God abound to his glory, all right; they will lie on, because
          they are of their father the devil, and his work they will do. He
          was a liar from the beginning; he is the father of lies, and they
          are his children. Therefore, in relation to all of these matters
          we feel perfectly easy.
          I was asked the other day if I would like to go and bear
          testimony before the court in relation to whether polygamy was a
          religious ordinance or not. I answered yes, if they subpoena me.
          They have not done it yet, and I do not know whether they will or
          not. I am quite willing to go and testify to that matter at any
          time. I think I will testify to you here. To begin with, there is
          nothing that I know of, or am acquainted with in this world, but
          what is a part of my religion and mixed up with it. It is all
          religion with me. I was told that the parties desired to know
          whether or not I believed that polygamy was a religious ordinance
          or institution. If this question had been put to me, I should
          have been inclined to ask the parties what they understood by the
          word religion; because, if I could not find out what their view
          of religion was, of course I could not tell whether I, in their
          estimation, had any or not.
          This consideration led me to a few reflections in relation to
          this matter. I had recourse to some of our dictionaries, to find
          out what popular lexicographers said about it. I referred to the
          standard works of several different nations, which I find to be
          as follows:--
          Webster (American), "Religion includes a belief in the revelation
          of his (God's) will to man, and in man's obligation to obey his
          Worcester (a prominent American). 1. An acknowledgement of our
          obligation to God as our creator. 2. A particular system of faith
          or worship. We speak of the Greek, Hindoo, Jewish, Christian, and
          Mahomedan religion.
          Johnson (English), "Religion, a system of faith and worship." 
          Dictionary of the French Academy, "La croyance que l'on a de la
          divinite' et le culte qu'on lue rend en consequence."
          Foi croyance.
          The belief we have in God and his worship.
          German Dictionary of Wurterbuch, by Dr. N. N. W. Meissner, a
          standard work in Germany.
          "Religion, glaube, faith, persuasion."
          Here, then we have the opinion of four of the great leading
          nations of the earth, as expressed by their acknowledged standard
          works, on what they consider to be the meaning of the word
          The German has it--faith, persuasion. The French--faith, belief;
          faith in God and his worship. The English--a system of faith and
          worship. These three are very similar.
          Next we have Webster, American, which is our acknowledged
          standard, and he says, "Religion includes a belief in the
          revelations of God's will to man, and in man's obligation to obey
          his commands."
          This is, indeed, very pointed; and if this definition be correct,
          it would necessarily lead us to inquire, as did Paul of old.
          "Whether is it better to obey man or God judge ye."
          Worcester, another prominent American lexicographer, speaks of
          "Religion as an acknowledgement of God as our creator, and a
          particular system of faith or worship." Here he agrees with the
          French, German, and English. He then quotes from a prominent
          work--"We speak of the Greek, Hindoo, Jewish, Christian, and
          Mahomedan religions." He might very properly have added Mormon.
          Faith, belief, and worship seem to be the prominent idea
          advanced, with the addition of our popular lexicographer Walker,
          who adds to the faith in God, that it must be in the revelations
          of His will to man, and in man's obligations to obey His
          Having now found out what the meaning of religion is, we shall be
          the better prepared to inquire whether a plurality of wives, or,
          as it is sometimes called, polygamy, is a part of our religious
          faith or not.
          The Constitution of the United States says that "Congress shall
          make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or
          prohibiting the free exercise thereof." I have thought of the law
          which Congress has made in relation to polygamy. The question,
          however, necessarily arises, is it constitutional for Congress to
          interfere with religious matters--with the establishment of
          religion, or the free exercise thereof? The Constitution says no.
          Then is polygamy a religious question or is it not? Is it a
          marriage ceremony or is it not? Marriage is received by the Greek
          church as a solemn sacrament of the church; the Roman Catholic
          church and the Church of England also admit marriage to be a
          religious sacrament; and so it is admitted by the great mass of
          religious sects now in the world. These are facts that need no
          proof; everybody is acquainted with them. It is true that in
          France and in the United States magistrates are authorized to
          officiate in solemnizing marriages. But in France, to this day,
          unless they are married by a minister of religion, many of the
          more conscientious feel that they are living in a state of
          Now, in relation to the position that we occupy concerning
          plurality, or, as it is termed, polygamy it differs from that of
          others. I have noticed the usage of several nations regarding
          marriage; but, as I have said, we are not indebted to any of them
          for our religion, nor for our ideas of marriage, they came from
          God. Where did this commandment come from in relation to
          polygamy? It also came from God. It was a revelation given unto
          Joseph Smith from God, and was made binding upon His servants.
          When this system was first introduced among this people, it was
          one of the greatest crosses that ever was taken up by any set of
          men since the world stood. Joseph Smith told others; he told me,
          and I can bear witness of it, "that if this principle was not
          introduced, this Church and kingdom could not proceed." When this
          commandment was given, it was so far religious, and so far
          binding upon the Elders of this Church that it was told them if
          they were not prepared to enter into it, and to stem the torrent
          of opposition that would come in consequence of it, the keys of
          the kingdom would be taken from them. When I see any of our
          people, men or women, opposing a principle of this kind, I have
          years ago set them down as on the high road to apostacy, and I do
          to-day; I consider them apostates, and not interested in this
          Church and kingdom. It is so far, then, a religious institution,
          that it affects my conscience and the consciences of all good
          men--it is so far religious that it connects itself with time and
          with eternity. What are the covenants we enter into, and why is
          it that Joseph Smith said that unless this principle was entered
          into this kingdom could not proceed? We ought to know the whys
          and the wherefores in relation to these matters, and understand
          something about the principle enunciated. These are simply words;
          we wish to know their signification.
          Where is there in the world a people that make any pretensions to
          have any claim upon their wives in eternity? Where is there a
          priest in all Christendom that teaches anything of this kind? You
          cannot find them. Marriage is solemnized until death do them
          part, and when death comes to either party, then there is an end
          to the whole matter, and what comes after death is in the dark to
          them. It was so with us up to the time of the giving of that
          revelation; we had no claim upon one wife in eternity. They had
          obeyed the Gospel as we had; they had been baptized in the name
          of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins as we had; we had been
          married to them according to the laws of the land, and were
          living as other Gentiles were, but we had no claim upon them in
          eternity. It was necessary that one grand truth should be
          unlocked, which is, that man and woman are destined to live
          together and have a claim upon each other in eternity. The
          Priesthood being restored, the key was turned in relation to this
          matter, and the privilege was placed not only within the reach of
          the Elders of this Church, but within the reach of all who should
          be considered worthy of it, to make covenants with their partners
          that should be binding in the eternal worlds; that in this
          respect, as well as in other respects, we might stand as a
          distinguished people, separate and apart from the rest of the
          earth, depending upon God for our religion.
          Previous to this revelation, who in all the world had any claim
          upon their wives in the eternal world, or what wife had a claim
          upon her husband? Who ever taught them any such principle?
          Nobody. Some of the novel writers have noticed it, but they did
          not claim authority from heaven; they merely wrote their own
          opinions and followed the promptings of their own instincts,
          which led them to hope that such a thing might be the case; but
          there was no certainty about it. Our position was just as Joseph
          said: if we could not receive the Gospel which is an everlasting
          Gospel; if we could not receive the dictum of a Priesthood that
          administers in time and eternity; if we could not receive a
          principle that would save us in the eternal world, and our wives
          and children with us, we were not fit to hold this kingdom, and
          could not hold it, for it would be taken from us and given to
          others. This is reasonable proper, consistent, and recommends
          itself to the minds of all intelligence when it is reflected upon
          in the light of truth. Then, what did this principle open up to
          our view? That our wives, who have been associated with us in
          time--who had borne with us the heat and burden of the day, who
          had shared in our afflictions, trials, troubles, and
          difficulties, that they could reign with us in the eternal
          kingdoms of God, and that they should be sealed to us not only
          for time, but for all eternity. This unfolded to us the eternal
          fitness and relationship of things as they exist on the earth, of
          man to man, and of husband to wife; it unfolds the relationship
          they should occupy in time to each other, and the relationship
          that will continue to exist in eternity. Hence it is emphatically
          a religious subject so deep, sacred, and profound, so extensive
          and far-reaching, that it is one of the greatest principles that
          was ever revealed to man. Did we know anything about it before?
          No. How did we get a knowledge of it? By revelation. And shall we
          treat lightly these things? No. The Lord says that his servants
          may take to themselves more wives than one. Who gives to them one
          wife? The Lord. And has he not a right to give to them another,
          and another, and another? I think he has that right. Who has a
          right to dispute it, and prohibit a union of that kind, if God
          shall ordain it? Has not God as much right to-day to give to me,
          or you, or any other person two, three, four, five, ten, or
          twenty wives, as he had anciently to give them to Abraham, Isaac,
          David, Solomon, etc.? Has not the Lord a right to do what he
          pleases in this matter, and in all other matters, without the
          dictation of man? I think He has. Every principle associated with
          the Gospel which we have received is eternal, hence our marriage
          covenant is an eternal covenant given unto us of God. Then, when
          poor, miserable, corrupt men would endeavor to trample us under
          their feet because of the principles of truth which we have
          received from God, shall we falter in the least? No, never. Its
          opposers may croak against it until they go down to the dust of
          death; God will defend his work which he has introduced in the
          latter days; and, the Lord being our helper, we will help him to
          sustain it.
          Associated with this is another important principle--the baptism
          for the dead. One of the prophets has said that, "I will send you
          Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and terrible
          day of the Lord; and he shall turn the hearts of the fathers to
          the children, and the hearts of the children to the fathers, lest
          I come and smite the earth with a curse." This Elias signifies a
          restorer. Jesus said of John the Baptist, in his day, "And if ye
          will receive it, this is the Elias (or restorer) which was for to
          come." "He that hath ears to hear, let him hear." But they would
          not hear: they did not receive it. They beheaded John, crucified
          Jesus, killed his apostles, and persecuted his followers; and
          their temple, nation, and polity were destroyed. But the times of
          restitution spoken of by the prophets must take place; the
          restorer must come "before that great and terrible day of the
          Lord." The hearts of the fathers must be turned to the children,
          and the hearts of the children to the fathers, or the earth will
          be cursed. This great eternal marriage covenant lays at the
          foundation of the whole; when this was revealed, then followed
          the other. Then, and not till then, could the hearts of the
          fathers be turned to their children, and the hearts of the
          children to the fathers; then and not till then, could the
          restoration be effectually commenced, time and eternity be
          connected, the past, present, and future harmonize, and the
          eternal justice of God be vindicated. "Saviors come upon Mount
          Zion to save the living, redeem the dead, unite man to woman and
          woman to man, in eternal, indissoluble ties; impart blessings to
          the dead, redeem the living, and pour eternal blessings upon
          Let us now go back to the action of Congress in relation to
          plural marriage, of which these eternal covenants are the
          foundation. The Lord says, "I will introduce the times of the
          restitution of all things; I will show you my eternal covenants,
          and call upon you to abide in them; I will show you how to save
          yourselves, your wives and children your progenitors and
          posterity, and to save the earth from a curse. Congress says, if
          you fulfill that law we will inflict upon you pains and
          penalties, fines and imprisonments; in effect, we will not allow
          you to follow God's commands. Now, if Congress possessed the
          constitutional right to do so, it would still be a high-handed
          outrage upon the rights of man; but when we consider that they
          cannot make such a law without violating the Constitution and
          thus nullifying the act, what are we to think of it? Where are we
          drifting to. After having, with uplifted hands to heaven, sworn
          that they will "make no law respecting the establishment of
          religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof," to thus
          sacrilegiously stand between a whole community and their God, and
          deliberately debar them so far as they have the power, from
          observing his law, do they realize what they are doing? Whence
          came this law on our statute books? Who constituted them our
          conscience keepers? Who appointed them the judge of our religious
          faith, or authorized them to coerce us to transgress a law that
          is binding and imperative on our consciences? We do not expect
          that Congress is acquainted with our religious faith; but, as
          members of the body politic, we do claim the guarantees of the
          Constitution and immunity from persecution on merely religious
          What are we to think of a United States judge who would marry a
          man to another man's wife. He certainly ought to know better. We
          are told that she was a second wife, and, therefore, not
          acknowledged. Indeed, this is singular logic. If she was not a
          wife, then polygamy is no crime in the eyes of the law; for
          Congress have passed no law against whoredom. A man may have as
          many mistresses as he please, without transgressing any law of
          Congress. The act in relation to polygamy contemplates punishing
          a man for having more wives, not mistresses. If she was simply
          his mistress, then the law is of no effect; and the very fact of
          Congress passing such a law is the strongest possible proof in
          law, of the existence of a marriage covenant, which, until that
          law was passed was by them considered valid. If, then, she was
          not his wife, no person could be punished under that law for
          polygamy. If she was his wife, then the judge transgressed the
          law which he professionally came to maintain.
          In relation to all these matters, the safe path for the Saints to
          take is, to do right, and, by the help of God, seek diligently
          and honorably to maintain the position which they hold. Are we
          ashamed of anything we have done in marrying wives? No. We shall
          not be ashamed before God and the holy angels, much less before a
          number of corrupt, miserable scoundrels, who are the very dregs
          of hell. We care nothing for their opinions, their ideas, or
          notions; for they do not know God, nor the principles which he
          has revealed. They wallow in the sink of corruption as they would
          have us do; but, the Lord being our helper, we will not do it,
          but we will try to do right and keep the commandments of God,
          live our religion, and pursue a course that will secure to us the
          smiles and approbation of God our Father. Inasmuch as we do this
          He will take care of us, maintain His own cause, and sustain His
          people. We have a right to keep His commandments. But what would
          you do if the United States were to bring up an army against you
          on account of polygamy, or on account of any other religious
          subject? We would trust in God, as we always have done. Would you
          have no fears? None. All the fears that I am troubled with is
          that this people will not do right--that they will not keep the
          commandments of God. If we will only faithfully live our
          religion, we fear no earthly power. Our safety is in God. Our
          religion is an eternal religion. Our covenants are eternal
          covenants, and we expect to maintain the principles of our
          religion on the earth, and to possess them in the heavens. And if
          our wives and children do right, and we as fathers and husbands
          do right in this world, we expect to have our wives and children
          in eternity. Let us live in that way which will secure the
          approbation of God, that we, his representatives on the earth,
          may magnify our calling, honor Him and maintain our integrity to
          the end; that we may be saved in His celestial kingdom, with our
          wives, and children, and brethren, from generation to generation,
          worlds without end. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / George
          Q. Cannon, May 6, 1866
                            George Q. Cannon, May 6, 1866
            Remarks by Elder George Q. Cannon, made in the Tabernacle in
                         Great Salt Lake City, May 6, 1866.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          It is very gratifying to me as it must be to all the Saints, to
          hear the testimonies of the Elders who return from their missions
          accompanied by the Spirit of God. There is no position that I
          know of where a man is more likely to derive a knowledge--a fixed
          and reliable knowledge--for himself respecting the work of God,
          than to be called to go to the nations of the earth, without
          purse and scrip, to travel among the people to proclaim unto them
          the restoration of the everlasting Gospel in its fullness again
          to the earth. It is not that there is more power manifested
          abroad than there is in Zion; but the position in which the
          Elders are placed is of such a nature, that they are compelled,
          of necessity, to seek unto God to obtain all the power possible
          for them to receive through faithfulness and diligence. Men are
          compelled, if they have any desire whatever to magnify their
          calling, to live so near unto the Lord that his Spirit and power
          will be with them all the time; for without these blessings every
          man, who has had any experience whatever, well knows it is
          impossible for man to edify and build up the people.
          The Lord, since the establishment of his Church upon the earth in
          these latter days, has performed a great many marvellous works.
          When our minds are enlightened by the Spirit of God, and we take
          a review of the Work from the beginning to the present, the only
          reflection that we can have is one of wonder, that in the midst
          of the many evidences of divinity which have been exhibited to
          the inhabitants of the earth since the foundation of this Work,
          men still justify themselves in the rejection of these principles
          and the denouncement of those who advocate them. It would be
          impossible, in the brief time allotted for our meeting, to
          enumerate all the evidences of the divinity of this Work, which
          are patent to the observer; but, look wherever we will, in
          contemplating this Work in the various changes through which it
          has passed from its first origin to the present we see the hand
          of God manifested and his power exhibited, and these things have
          been no more shown forth in the past than they are being shown
          forth at the present. The present circumstances which surround us
          are of such a nature that every man, who can divest himself
          sufficiently of prejudice and view this Work calmly, must be
          convinced that there is a power greater than that of man
          connected with it.
          This morning, Brother George A. Smith in his narrative of the
          trials through which the Church passed in its early days, alluded
          to the great number of persons who have apostatized from this
          Church. There is a peculiar feature attending those who
          apostatize, of which the parallel cannot be found among any other
          people, except we go back to the primitive Christians--the
          immediate disciples of Jesus. Men may belong to any of the
          so-called Christian sects of the day, and they may renounce their
          belief or dissolve their connection with the religious bodies of
          which they are members, and we do not see that virulence, that
          spirit and disposition to seek for the blood of those with whom
          they were formerly connected, manifested on their part, which are
          manifested by those who have been members of the Church of Jesus
          Christ of Latter-day Saints, and have apostatized therefrom. In
          consequence of this, the inhabitants of the earth are frequently
          deceived. Many honest people may have been deceived through this
          manifestation of hatred, and animosity, and blood-thirstiness on
          the part of those who have been connected with us. They do not
          trace these manifestations to their proper cause, and they jump
          at the conclusion that the people who are so much hated and
          maligned, and whose injury is so diligently sought by those who
          were once connected with them, must of course be a very bad
          people, or there could not be such feelings manifested towards
          them. Men are misled on this point, because they are not
          acquainted with the causes which operate on the minds of those
          who reject the work of God.
          The work of God, from its beginning on the earth until the
          present time, is something that has not a parallel, there being
          nothing like it that we can see elsewhere. There are traits of
          character and manifestations of disposition exhibited by the
          Latter-day Saints which are not to be found elsewhere among men.
          Under the operations of the Gospel upon the people who obey it,
          new motives and new manifestations are brought into existence.
          They may be called new, because they have not been witnessed
          among men for many generations past. And as there are new and
          peculiar features of character developed and exhibited by the
          Saints, so also there are traits manifested by those who oppose
          the Saints, which are diverse from any that the opponents of
          other systems exhibit. This is particularly the case with those
          who have been connected with us, and have apostatized, and
          thereby dissolved that connection.
          We who are Latter-day Saints understand this; some, probably,
          understand it better than others; but still, there is a general
          understanding among the Saints of God respecting this work. We
          know that it is as strict a law of heaven as any other that has
          been given, that the man who enters into this Church, and
          practices impurity, will lose the Spirit of God, and, sooner or
          later, will be opposed to this Work. This is a truth that has
          been proclaimed almost daily in our hearing, from the time the
          Church was organized until now. There is no general truth that
          has been so frequently dwelt upon, and so powerfully enforced
          upon the minds of this people, as this truth to which I now
          allude. We who are connected with this Church, and retain our
          membership with this people, must be pure in our thoughts, in our
          words, and in our actions; we must take a course to retain the
          Spirit of God in our hearts; and if we do not take a course of
          this kind, the Spirit of God will inevitably leave us, and that
          light which has illumined our understandings, that joy and peace
          which have filled our souls and caused us to rejoice exceedingly
          before the Lord will depart from us, and we shall be left in a
          worse condition than we were before we obeyed the Gospel. If we
          turn to the history of the Apostles we find a striking instance
          of this in the case of Judas, one of the twelve Apostles--one of
          the chosen disciples of the Lamb--whom we may suppose was once
          possessed of the Spirit of truth; but he was a hypocrite; he
          broke the commandments of God; he did that which is evil. How did
          this disposition manifest itself? As soon as he chose to dissolve
          his connection with the people of God, did he go and bury himself
          among the rest of the Jews, and from that time say nothing more
          about the work of God he had been connected with? No; but the
          first promptings of his evil heart were to sell his Lord and
          Master--to be his betrayer, and the destroyer of the
          innocent--prostituting the knowledge which he had received to a
          base purpose, distorting and misrepresenting it in such a manner
          that it proved the means of condemning the man who he had
          previously looked upon as his Lord. This is the spirit that will
          manifest itself, the spirit that the ancient Apostles had to
          contend with in the midst of those who were opposed to them, and
          who had formerly been connected with them--false brethren.
          Whenever a man loses the spirit of the Gospel, whenever the
          Spirit of god is supplanted by the spirit of the evil one, that
          man is a fit tool for the adversary to work with and to use to
          effect his accursed purposes in shedding the blood of innocence;
          because he gives way to the spirit of him who was a murderer and
          a liar from the beginning, and whose works have been evil from
          the creation until now. In our day the two spirits are
          manifested, only with more power, with more strength than have
          been witnessed on the earth since the days of the Apostles.
          For generations there has been an indifference manifested by the
          adversary of truth to the systems of religion which have
          prevailed among men. When men partake of error, when they are not
          accompanied by the Spirit of God, when the power and authority
          which God imparts to fulfill his great purposes are not in
          existence among them, then there is an indifference manifested by
          the adversary; religious organizations and religious movements
          are regarded by him with unconcern, because the necessity does
          not exist, under those circumstances, for vigilant exertion on
          his part. But the moment the Holy Priesthood of God is restored,
          being the power and authority imparted by heaven to men, which
          gives them capacity to go forth and administer in the things of
          God, then all hell is moved, all who are under the influence of
          the adversary are at once in commotion, and they seek to destroy
          all those who have the temerity to stand up in the defence of the
          truth and righteousness in the power of the Holy Priesthood of
          the Son of God. This has been the case from the beginning until
          now, from the shedding of the blood of righteous Abel down to the
          time that the last Apostle was slain. There have been feelings
          manifested, dispositions exhibited in connection with this Work
          which have not been seen among men for a great length of time
          before. There have been a faith and devotion, a love and
          integrity manifested by the Saints of God, by those who have
          received the Gospel of Jesus Christ, that have not been seen for
          a long period of time. On the other hand, there have been intense
          feelings of bitterness, hatred, and strife, and murder, and
          everything that is evil, manifested in opposition thereunto. As I
          have said, these manifestations are traceable to the fact that
          God has attempted to do a work again among men at the present
          time, which is an uncommon thing to this generation. If we
          converse with the votaries of modern Christianity about the
          persecutions which the Apostles and Prophets endured, and which
          all righteous men in every age have endured from the hands of the
          wicked, they say that those were ages of barbarism and darkness;
          civilization and enlightenment had not spread their benign
          influences over the inhabitants of the earth; the printing press
          was not in existence, and the benefits that flow therefrom were
          not known and enjoyed by man; they were, consequently, dark,
          uneducated, and ignorant, and therefore superstitious and cruel.
          To such ignorance and darkness do many modern Christians
          attribute the persecutions righteous men met with in former days.
          But in this day, they say, we live in the blaze of Gospel light;
          the Bible is published in almost every language, and extensive
          means have been taken to disseminate the truth, and the
          exhibition of those cruel feelings which were common in ancient
          times are not to be seen now. Thus they delude themselves with
          the idea that they are better than were the fathers, even as the
          Jews did in the days of Jesus when they exclaimed, "If we had
          been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers
          with them in the blood of the Prophets;" and they built the tombs
          of the Prophets, and garnished the sepulchres of the righteous;
          but Jesus said unto them, "Wherefore ye be witnesses unto
          yourselves that ye are the children of them which killed the
          Prophets." "Fill ye up, then, the measure of your fathers."
          To reason with many men upon this subject, and to have them
          reason in return, they would impress you with the idea that the
          antagonism which formerly existed between Satan and God has
          ceased, and that there is a sort of amnesty existing between
          them, and hence Satan does not have that power over the hearts of
          men that he had formerly. This is a very great delusion, and a
          very common one. It is a delusion which has been common to every
          generation when the Gospel has been preached among the
          inhabitants of the earth. Every generation has flattered itself
          that it is a little better than the one that preceded it. Every
          generation has prided itself in its knowledge and great
          advancement in the arts and sciences and its superiority over
          preceding generations; yet the power of the adversary and his
          hatred of righteousness and truth are as great to-day as they
          ever were since the creation of the earth. The moment a man
          undertakes to proclaim true principles--to declare the Gospel of
          Jesus Christ and exhort the people to cry unto God in faith, he
          stirs up in the hearts of the people a feeling of opposition and
          strife which, if he be not acquainted with the cause, strikes him
          with wonder and astonishment. How often has it been the case that
          our Elders in going forth to preach have labored among people who
          were ignorant of the existence of the Church of Jesus Christ of
          Latter-day Saints, and of their principles, or, if they have
          heard anything, it has been but little. This could not be done
          now; but there have been times in the past when it could be done.
          But when Elders could go to places where the people had heard but
          little or nothing about the Latter-day Saints, as soon as they
          commenced declaring to the people that God had spoken from the
          heavens, and exhorted the people to seek unto God, and He would
          answer their prayers as anciently, a spirit of opposition would
          be aroused. This has been so time and time again with our people,
          showing that it is not the evils of the Latter-day Saints, nor
          because they are polygamists, &c., that they are hated; for they
          met with opposition before anything was known of the doctrine.
          This feeling did not have its origin in any of these causes; but
          in the hatred which the adversary always has to the truth, and in
          the power which he exercises over the hearts of the children of
          disobedience, prompting them to go to any and every length to
          prevent the accomplishment of that which God our Heavenly Father
          seeks to bring to pass among the people.
          It is the most foolish thing that people ever attempted to tell
          us that if we were to do so and so, take such and such a course,
          that we should not be persecuted. Men who make such assertions do
          not know this Work; they cannot comprehend it; they know nothing
          about the characteristics of this people, nor the work which they
          are connected with; if they did, they would know that the world
          would love its own, and that it would hate everything that is not
          of the world, and that comes in contact with religious popularity
          in the world, and that everything of this kind is hated by the
          world and by him who is the master of the world.
          My brethren and sisters, we are engaged in the greatest of all
          warfares. No sooner did Joseph Smith receive the Holy Priesthood
          from heaven, and the power and authority to administer the
          ordinances of life and salvation, than this warfare commenced;
          and it has gone on widening and increasing until it has assumed
          its present dimensions; and it will go on increasing until it
          will fill the whole earth--until the warfare that has been
          inaugurated will occupy the thoughts and minds of all the
          inhabitants of the earth, and until one of these powers will
          prevail in the earth. It was said on one occasion by a leading
          statesman of our nation, that the conflict between freedom and
          slavery was irrepressible. It may be truthfully said respecting
          the warfare in which we are engaged that it is irrepressible, and
          it will not terminate until one power or the other succumbs to
          the other. Which power shall succumb? There will be no cessation
          to this strife and contest. One or the other has to ride
          triumphant and hold dominion over this earth. Truth must prevail,
          or error must hold sway.
          God has spoken on this point in unmistakable terms, that it is
          his intention to establish his kingdom and carry on his work,
          which the Prophets in vision had seen from the commencement of
          the earth until now; that it is his intention to roll forth his
          kingdom until it shall fill the whole earth--until the laws of
          the kingdom of God shall be universally respected and obeyed by
          all the inhabitants of the earth; until he whose right it is to
          reign shall sway his sceptre over an obedient earth, or over a
          population who will be obedient to him.
                 On the other hand, a declaration has been made, not by
          the adversary directly but by his emissaries, and those who are
          under the influence of his spirit, that the work of God must
          stand still--that it must go backward and be overwhelmed.
          The contest is not with cannon or with rifles and swords, and
          weapons of this description; but it is, nevertheless, a
          warfare--a warfare between the spirit of darkness and that of
          light--between he who attempts to usurp the dominion of this
          earth and the God of heaven. The war which was waged in heaven
          has been transferred to the earth, and it is now being waged by
          the hosts of error and darkness against God and truth; and the
          conflict will not cease until sin is anguished and this earth is
          fully redeemed from the power of the adversary, and from the
          misrule and oppression which have so long exercised power over
          the earth. Do you wonder, then, that there is hatred and
          bitterness manifested; that the servants of God have had to watch
          continually to guard against the attacks of the enemy; that the
          blood of Joseph and Hyrum, David Patten, and others has been
          shed, and that the Saints, whose only crime was desiring to serve
          God in truth, virtue, uprightness, and sincerity, have been
          persecuted and afflicted all the day long? I do not wonder at it;
          there is no room for wonder in the minds of those who understand
          the work in which we are engaged. 
          This power, which is waging a warfare against us, would shed the
          blood of every man and woman who profess to be Latter-day Saints
          and who try with all their might to live their religion and honor
          the Holy Priesthood. There is no excess of cruelty at which they
          who are influenced by it would stop, no length to which they
          would not go to accomplish their damnable and hellish purposes.
          Why? Because the devil was a murderer from the beginning--he has
          murdered from the beginning; he prompted the first murder, and he
          prompted the last one. It was he who prompted men at all times to
          shed the blood of innocence, and seek by so doing to stop the
          work of God. He induced Judas to betray and shed the blood of
          Jesus Christ--to shed the most precious blood that ever flowed in
          human veins. He it was who stirred men up to commit these
          murders, impressing them with the false idea that some great
          advantage would result from such crimes, and that they would be
          able to check the progress of the kingdom of God and arrest the
          purposes of Jehovah. And it is the same power which is at work
          to-day and that suggested to men to shed the blood of Joseph, and
          instilled into their minds the thought that if they could kill
          him they could thereby interrupt the work of God. But as we see,
          instead of accomplishing what they expected, they have only
          forwarded the purposes of God our heavenly Father.
          In suggesting to men to shed the blood of Jesus Christ, and the
          blood of innocence in every dispensation and age when God has had
          a people on the earth the devil has shown great ignorance and
          blindness, and God has, through his superior wisdom and power,
          overruled all these acts for his own glory, and for the
          accomplishment of his own purposes and the salvation of man upon
          the earth. We shall have his hatred to meet, and no man need
          suppose for a moment that Latter-day Saints can avoid it, for in
          so doing he deceives himself. As long as there is any power on
          the earth that can be wielded by Satan we shall have to encounter
          these things and contend with them; and any man not connected
          with us who imagines that this continued and unceasing warfare is
          going to discourage us, or cause our determination to roll forth
          the kingdom of God to slacken in the least, deceives himself. He
          knows not the men who are engaged in this work, and the power
          which God has bestowed, and the light and intelligence he has
          imparted to us respecting this conflict in which we are engaged.
          God has reserved spirits for this dispensation who have the
          courage and determination to face the world, and all the powers
          of the evil one, visible and invisible to proclaim the Gospel,
          and maintain the truth, and establish and build up the Zion of
          our God, fearless of all consequences. He has sent these spirits
          in this generation to lay the foundation of Zion never more to be
          overthrown, and to raise up a seed that will be righteous, and
          that will honor God, and honor him supremely, and be obedient to
          him under all circumstances. The experience that we have gained
          in this respect in the past is only a foretaste of that which is
          in the future. Those who started in this Work with an
          understanding of its nature, made their calculations that, if it
          were necessary to lay down their lives and sacrifice everything
          that is near and dear to them, they with the Lord's help, would
          do so to break the yoke of Satan and free mankind from the
          thraldom of sin that has so long oppressed them. There is no
          doubt that many have had their lives shortened through the
          cruelty of their enemies; many have been spoiled of their goods
          and have been called upon to make sacrifices, if we may term them
          such, but in our view they are not sacrifices, yet we cannot
          express the idea better than by using this word. The difficulties
          which we have encountered in the past in this respect we shall
          doubtless meet in the future, with this difference, that the
          kingdom of God is gaining power and strength; the people are
          gaining faith and experience, which enable them to endure far
          more than in former days.
          This morning, Brother George A. Smith alluded to circumstances in
          the early history of this people which caused those who called
          themselves Saints to apostatize. While he was speaking I
          contrasted the difference in my mind between the Saints today and
          then. There is a very great difference. Many apostatized then
          from trivial and foolish causes; they were so ignorant of the
          nature of the work of God. Now it is somewhat better understood,
          and apostacy is not near so common as then; people begin to
          understand the mind of the Lord. The adversary has less power and
          influence over the Latter-day Saints than he had in that early
          day. The kingdom of God is becoming more consolidated, and it
          wields greater influence every day; and it will be so from this
          time forward until the Priesthood shall prevail.
          The hatred of the adversary will not be lessened by the lapse of
          time; in fact, I sometimes think that he will make more desperate
          exertions; he will arouse all the inhabitants of the earth by his
          influence, and by slanders, and lies, and storms of vituperation,
          and, by his mists of darkness, endeavor to becloud the
          understandings of mankind, so that they will be deceived
          respecting this Work. We have these agencies at work here.
          I heard a gentleman remark lately, who himself had just arrived
          in the city, that he supposed from the reports that were
          circulated about affairs at this city that all the people here
          were in a blaze of excitement, that men dare not go out of their
          houses, and that a certain class were in danger of their lives.
          Now, we who live here know how false these reports are; yet, it
          shows the nature of the agencies which are at work, and the means
          wicked men use to becloud the understanding and to stir up the
          anger of the powers that be--the Government and its agents--to
          take steps to crush, if possible, this people. Doubtless, we
          shall have this to contend with from this time forward to an
          increased extent, as the kingdom advances and occupies a larger
          share of public attention and a more conspicuous position among
          the nations. But, with the increase of this disposition among the
          wicked, there will be an increase of strength, and power, and
          faith, and experience on the part of the Latter-day Saints.
          I often think about our circumstances to-day, and those which we
          have been surrounded with for some time. Who, do you think, on
          all the face of the earth could enjoy themselves so calmly as we
          do with the influences operating against them that we have
          working against us? We know that men have gone from here with the
          avowed purpose and determination to do all in their power to stir
          up the power of the nation against us, and endeavor to get a
          military force sent here to enforce their obnoxious views. They
          have boasted of this, and have in anticipation rejoiced over the
          fulfillment of their accursed hate. Have these things disturbed
          us as a people? No. I do not know a person in this entire
          community who has lost five minutes' sleep through concern and
          agitation on these points. We have gone to bed as calmly as
          though all mankind were at peace with us, and we had not an enemy
          in the world who sought our injury. What is the cause of this
          calmness? It originated in the experience we have gained. God has
          promised that we shall be delivered. We believe his promise. He
          has delivered us in the past, and he will in the future. It is
          His work, and it is for us to do our duty and leave events with
          Our enemies are only fulfilling their mission as we are
          fulfilling ours. They are accomplishing the works they have
          undertaken, and we are performing those for which we have
          enlisted, namely, the works of God. They are foolish for taking
          that path which leads to their destruction, when they might take
          the opposite course. I have all these thoughts respecting them;
          but then God gives them their agency, and it is not my place to
          quarrel with them about the way in which they exercise that
          agency. If they choose to be the tools of wicked and designing
          men, and of him who is the father of lies, they will get their
          reward according to their works. If we are faithful, if we are
          humble, live our religion, and cultivate the Spirit of God and
          cherish it continually, we will get our reward, and in proportion
          to our diligence. That is a consolation that we have; therefore,
          we have no cause to be disturbed at the wicked. Let them fill
          their destiny and perform their part in the great drama of the
          last days. It is necessary, probably, in the wisdom of God that
          every man and woman on the face of the earth should have the free
          and unrestrained exercise of their agency to do good or evil.
          In speaking about apostacy, it is a remarkable feature connected
          with it and with those who favor apostates and consort with them
          that they are filled with the spirit of fear. It can be
          truthfully aid of the Latter-day Saints, that they are a fearless
          people. Even our enemies give us credit for this--that in the
          midst of dangers and difficulties we are undisturbed and not
          easily appalled. But there is this peculiarity connected with
          apostacy and apostates, and with those who consort with and favor
          them: they are continually in dread of some impending
          danger--some evil that is about to be perpetrated upon them by
          the Latter-day Saints. Go where you will among apostates, you
          will see this feature in their character, but especially in Zion.
          Hence, so many stories about destroying angels, Danites, &c.,
          &c., being among the Saints. The moment a man loses the Spirit of
          God and the spirit of the adversary takes possession of him, he
          is filled with fear; for "the sinners in Zion are afraid;
          fearfulness hath surprised the hypocrites." They say their lives
          are in danger. All the terrible stories that are circulated in
          the east and the west about the people of Utah have their origin
          in the fears of the wicked, in the fears of those who have a
          consciousness within themselves of having committed wrong. No
          honest man or woman need fear; indeed they never fear. What are
          they afraid of? They have done nothing to cause the spirit of
          fear to come upon them. It is only when a man does that which is
          wrong that he receives the spirit of fear. 
          This peculiarity has been manifest from the beginning of this
          Church up to the present time. As was stated here a few Sundays
          ago, it was exhibited by William Law in Nauvoo. He thought that
          somebody had designs against his life. His fear had its origin in
          the spirit of apostacy and adultery with which he was filled.
          Whenever a man indulges in the spirit of apostacy, he begins to
          be filled with fear. Those who have the Spirit of God and love
          their religion have nothing to fear; they can meet their brethren
          and sisters, the angels of God, and even the Lord himself,
          without having that dastardly fear with them. In the knowledge of
          their weakness, and their ignorance, and doing many things
          unintentionally, they feel sorry; but still they are sustained
          with a consciousness of doing no intentional wrong.
          The spirit of evil takes possession of the wicked--the same
          spirit that is possessed by the damned; that spirit seizes upon
          them while they are in the flesh.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 / George
          Q. Cannon, May 6, 1866
          The Latter-day Saints who live their religion partake of the joys
          of heaven; the spirit of it shines in their countenances; it is
          in their habitations; it is around about them, and all who come
          in contact with them feel its influence resting upon them. This
          will increase more and more.
          May God help us to cultivate it, and may we approximate nearer to
          our Father and God, and be able to fight the good fight of faith,
          not laying off our armor, and bravely resist the adversary, and
          carry forward this great Work until it shall prevail throughout
          the length and breadth of the earth, and the sound shall go forth
          that the earth is redeemed and the purposes of God are
          consummated, which may God grant. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 /
          Brigham Young, June 3, 1866
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 /
          Brigham Young, June 3, 1866
                             Brigham Young, June 3, 1866
          Remarks by President Brigham Young, made in the Tabernacle, Great
                            Salt Lake City, June 3, 1866.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          I wish the few remarks which I may now make to be comprehensive
          and instructive. 
          The subject upon which Brother Wells has spoken this afternoon is
          a very intricate one to define. It is very difficult to convey
          even the ideas which we may have respecting the operations of, to
          us, invisible spirits upon the hearts of the children of men; and
          it is very difficult to frame in the mind a system of thinking
          and reasoning upon this subject that is at all satisfactory. It
          is very difficult to form in the mind an even, and unbroken, and
          correct thread of ideas which will truthfully and satisfactorily
          explain the variations which we see in the motives and actions of
          mankind, and to understand the varied motives and feelings of the
          people, and what they design in performing such and such acts.
          There are some who have a correct and clear thread of ideas
          framed in their minds relating to this subject, but cannot convey
          them to their fellow-beings. This is a weakness that I believe is
          inherent to a greater or less degree in each and every one of us.
          The opposition which we find in the hearts of the children of men
          to the Gospel of life and salvation, Brother Wells has been
          setting before us this afternoon in a very able manner. Upon this
          subject I have my own reflections, and my own way of revealing
          those reflections to others.
          The opposition which we see manifested against the truth in this
          our day has been manifested in every day and age of the world
          wherein the Gospel of the Son of God has been preached to the
          children of men. There is no difference to-day in this respect
          from what it was formerly. Our opponents tell us that were it not
          for the doctrine we believe, teach, and practice, there would be
          no difficulty--no strife between the Latter-day Saints and those
          who call themselves Gentiles. We are all Gentiles by birth who
          are not of Jewish descent. We who are called Latter-day Saints
          are Gentiles by birth--we are nationally so. The opposition which
          we have to meet is not because we believe in polygamy. That
          principle is not the real bone of contention, but it is the power
          of Satan against the power of Jesus Christ here upon this earth.
          It is no matter what the doctrines are; it is no matter by what
          name they are called, in what manner they are presented, or by
          whom they are believed; it is the power of God on the one hand,
          and the power of Satan on the other. We can see the workings of
          the two spirits upon the hearts and dispositions of the children
          of men. Opposition to the truth is made manifest by those who
          render themselves servants to obey false principles or false
          ideas, and their actions are directed by the power of Satan
          against the truth of heaven in the persons of those who love and
          advocate it.
          We have been told that when error is introduced it is generally
          done in a most genteel, religious, scientific, and most refined
          and civilized manner. The servants of sin should appear polished
          and pious. It is necessary they should be learned, and be able to
          call to their assistance the accomplishments and elegancies of
          science and art, and the subtle, persuasive power of rhetoric.
          Jesus Christ describes this class of deceivers very forcibly in
          the following words:--"But all their works they do to be seen of
          men; they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders
          of their garments, and love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and
          the chief seats in the synagogues, and greetings in the markets,
          and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi." This external polish is
          really necessary for them as a covering to make successful the
          introduction of false theories and false principles, and to cover
          up licentious and wicked lives.
          The servants of God have truth, and nothing but truth to present
          to the world, that the world may be sanctified by the truth. The
          truth needeth no polish to make it lovely and desirable to those
          who love it. The principles of truth and goodness, and of eternal
          lives and the power of God are from eternity to eternity. The
          principle of falsehood and wickedness, the power of the devil and
          the power of death are also from eternity to eternity. These two
          powers have ever existed and always will exist in all the
          eternities that are yet to come. Although in relation to this
          earth, some time in its future history there will be no death,
          and him that hath the power of death will be destroyed. It is
          written in the Book of Mormon, "For it must needs be that there
          is an opposition in all things. If not so, righteousness could
          not be brought to pass; neither wickedness; neither holiness nor
          misery; neither good nor bad."
          When man is born into the world he is at once subject to the
          influences of life and death and to the innumerable and varied
          vicissitudes which he meets in his passage from birth to the
          grave, to give him an experience which will prepare him to enter
          into and enjoy life everlasting. He is endowed with agency to
          choose either life or death, and must abide the consequences in
          the next life of the choice which he makes in this. Were it not
          that evil exists with good, man could not have been an agent unto
          himself. When the spirit of man enters the earthly tabernacle, it
          is as pure as an angel of God. When man, as a child, is brought
          forth to the light, and begins to live, move, and have a visible
          and an individual being in this world, he is brought in contact
          with the principle of evil--he receives the mark of sin, and as
          passes the usual stages from infancy to manhood, he learns to
          become disobedient to the requirements of heaven, disobedient to
          the laws of man, and disobedient to the laws of his own nature;
          he engenders the spirit of hatred, malice, wrath, strife, and all
          that class of evils which render him unfit to return again to the
          presence of his Father and God; but if he will obey the Gospel
          and walk in the ways of the Lord, his mortal existence and his
          proneness to sin, which he has inherited through the fall, become
          profitable and essentially necessary to the full enjoyment of
          salvation and eternal life.
          These ideas may be profitable to the Saints and aid them in
          understanding to some extent why things are as they are.
          Then the opposition to the truth is not because we have no wife,
          because we have one wife or many wives; it is not because we are
          Socialists and have all things common; it is not because we
          believe in or practice this or that doctrine as individuals and
          as a people; but it is the spirit of him who is an enemy to all
          righteousness that is in the hearts of those who yield themselves
          to obey false principles. Paul, in his writing to the Romans,
          says, "Neither yield ye your members as instruments of
          unrighteousness unto sin; but yield yourselves unto God, as those
          that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of
          righteousness unto God." "Know ye not, that to whom ye yield
          yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are whom ye obey;
          whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?"
          When truth comes, error comes also. When the Gospel of the Son of
          God is introduced among the children of men, it comes with light
          and intelligence, with pure and holy principles. It embraces all
          morality, all virtue, all light, all intelligence, all greatness,
          and all goodness. It introduces a system of laws and ordinances,
          and a code of moral rectitude which, if obeyed by the human
          family, will lead them back to the presence of God. As we were
          exhorted this morning to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, be
          baptised for the remission of sins, receive the laying on of
          hands for the reception of the Holy Ghost, receive the spirit of
          prophecy, the spirit of discerning of spirits, the gift of
          healing, and, in short, all the gifts, and graces, and laws, and
          ordinances of the Gospel, which are for life and salvation. Now,
          the power of Satan is opposed to all this.
          Now, let me state somewhat the reason why the devil appears as a
          gentleman when he presents himself to the children of men. The
          children of men have good principles dwelling within them. When
          their spirits came into this mortal flesh, they brought with them
          the love of all truth, virtue, and goodness; but the sin that has
          contaminated the mortal tabernacle through the fall creates what
          the Apostle Paul, when writing to Timothy, calls a "warfare."
          When Joseph Smith first preached the Gospel to this generation
          the Spirit of God attended it, and that Spirit met an opposing
          spirit, which was the spirit of Satan, exerting his power to lead
          away mankind from the truth to everlasting ruin; while the Spirit
          of the Gospel, the Spirit of the Lord Jesus Christ, sought to
          lead to exaltation and everlasting life. Here are the two powers
          in opposition to each other.
          Now, remember that it is not because we are called "Mormons," or
          Latter-day Saints, that we meet opposition; there is nothing
          odious in mere names and titles. Joseph Smith has as good a right
          to his name as John Smith has to his. There is nothing criminal
          in the simple name of Joseph Smith; yet, he being a servant of
          God and a preacher of righteousness, his name became odious to
          the wicked, and the three simple words, "Old Joe Smith," were
          sufficient to arouse in their hearts every vindictive and
          blood-thirsty desire. It was not, however, this simple name that
          aroused the worst feelings of the human heart against those who
          loved and obeyed the truth; but it was the spirit of Satan
          working in the hearts of the children of disobedience against the
          truth. Why was Joseph Smith, and why are his brethren, so odious
          to those who are not of us? Because we have the words of eternal
          life to offer to the world. The devil is opposed to this, and
          offers resistance to the progress of the spirit of the Gospel by
          arousing the wicked, who are under his influence, to hate, and
          persecute, and annoy in every possible way, the true followers of
          the Lord Jesus.
          Let me say to you, my friends (and if I have foes here I say it
          also to them), there is no spirit inhabiting a mortal tabernacle
          (that has not sinned away the day of grace), but what naturally
          loves and adores the truth, and would bless and honor all those
          who seek to walk in the way of the Lord, were it not for the
          influence and power of evil by which they are controlled. There
          is a constant warfare between the good and the evil. The mortal
          tabernacle is of the earth earthy, and came forth for the express
          purpose of being prepared to serve as a dwelling for the eternal
          spirit; and the spirit has come hero for the express purpose of
          getting a tabernacle; and the sin that is in the fleshy
          tabernacle is against the good that is in the spirit. The Apostle
          Paul, when writing to the Romans, says, "For I delight in the law
          of God, after the inward man: but I see another law in my members
          warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into
          captivity to the law of sin which is in my members."
          It is not the name of a man or the name of a sect which inspires
          this warfare, but it is a war which has always existed, and will
          always continue to exist, between the good and the bad, between
          the power of God and the power of the devil. To those who are not
          instructed in the things of God it appears to be a warfare
          between sects and parties. The votaries of the bad excuse
          themselves for their persecutions of the good by supposing that
          they, themselves, as individuals, or their nations, are about to
          suffer some great wrong from the upholders of the good. As an
          example of this I will quote from the Gospel according to St.
          Luke:--"And the whole multitude of them arose and led him (Jesus
          Christ) unto Pilate. And they began to accuse him, saying, we
          found this fellow perverting the nation and forbidding to give
          tribute to Caesar, saying, that he himself is Christ, a king."
          This is the cunning of the devil, and a means by which he leads
          down to destruction great numbers of the human family. He gets
          the political world to believe that they are, or are going to, be
          infringed upon; he makes the religious world believe that the
          sanctity and rights of their holy religion are in danger, and
          thus he gets them to make his cause their own; they are lashed
          into a frenzy of excitement and hatred against the Saints; every
          high-toned, honorable and truthful feeling of the human heart is
          blunted or entirely subdued in them; they plan for the
          destruction of God's people, and, in many instances, the blood of
          the Saints--the blood of innocence--has been shed by their hands.
          It is written in the book of Revelation: "And the great dragon
          was cast out, that old serpent, called the devil, and satan,
          which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth,
          and his angels with him." 
          Paul in view of the power of the great deceiver and his host
          exhorted the Saints anciently to "Put on the whole armor of God,
          that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For
          we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against
          principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the
          darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high
          places." A great number of those who oppose the truth, and mob
          and rob and kill the followers of the Lord Jesus Christ, know not
          what they oppose, but they are moved to commit depredations
          against the people of God by men who are desperately wicked;
          these are among the bitterest enemies of the truth. The multitude
          in the days of Jesus cried out: "Crucify him." The chief priests
          had delivered him up from envy. Pilate knew this; "but the chief
          priests moved the people that he should rather release Barabas
          unto them. When Pilate inquired what evil he had done, they cried
          out more exceedingly: crucify him." They know not what they did.
          Wherever the Gospel of Jesus Christ has been preached either in
          these or in former days, it has met with a class of men to whom
          the truth looked lovely and God-like, and the spirit within would
          prompt them to embrace it; but they find themselves so
          advantageously connected in the world and have so many interests
          at stake if they should embrace it, they conclude that it will
          not do, and here comes the warfare again. Some few will overcome
          the reasonings of the flesh and follow the dictates of the
          Spirit; while the great majority of this class of persons are won
          over by sordid considerations and cleave to their idols. The good
          spirit tries to overcome the wayward will of the flesh, and the
          flesh, aided by the cunning and power of the devil, maintains a
          strong warfare; but, notwithstanding this great power against
          which the spirit has to contend, the power of God is greater than
          the power of the wicked one; and unless the Saints sin against
          light and knowledge, and wilfully neglect their plain and well
          understood duties, and the Spirit of God is grieved and it ceases
          to strive with them, the Spirit is sure to prevail over the
          flesh, and ultimately succeeds in sanctifying the tabernacle for
          a residence in the presence of God.
          The spirit which inhabits these tabernacles naturally loves
          truth, it naturally loves light and intelligence, it naturally
          loves virtue, God and godliness; but being so closely united with
          the flesh their sympathies are blended and their union being
          necessary to the possession of a fullness of joy to both, the
          spirit is indeed subject to be influenced by the sin that is in
          the mortal body, and to be overcome by it and by the power of the
          devil, unless it is constantly enlightened by that spirit which
          enlighteneth every man that cometh into the world, and by the
          power of the Holy Ghost which is imparted through the Gospel. In
          this, and this alone, consists the warfare between Christ and the
          It is not in my being called a Quaker, a Methodist or a "Mormon"
          that is the true cause of contention between these two great
          powers--Christ and Belial; but it is in the fact that God has
          established His kingdom upon the earth and restored the Holy
          Priesthood, which gives men authority and power to administer in
          His name.
          It has been told us this afternoon, and was this morning also,
          that we must be baptized in order to be saved. Much remains to be
          said on the means necessary to effect salvation in its
          completeness. We might as well say that a beautiful temple could
          be built and all its details completed and finished in a day, as
          to say that we can tell all we know about the plan of man's
          salvation in a short hour and a half or in a day. It is plain to
          every enlightened person that the Lord has introduced fit and
          proper laws by which he will save His children and exalt them
          into his presence. If these laws are not obeyed by the human
          family, they cannot be saved, nor be exalted to the presence of
          God. What will become of all those who will not obey the laws of
          salvation? Will they be confined throughout an endless enternity
          in that bottomless pit, where their worm dieth not, and where
          their fire is not quenched?
          It is necessary that men should become acquainted with the laws
          of God, and the ordinances of His kingdom, and receive of the
          power of the world to come in order to fit them to become angels
          of the devil, and that the devil may have full power over them;
          and these are the only ones who are cut off from every degree of
          salvation. Jesus said, "now is the judgment of this world: now
          shall the prince of this world be cast out. And I, if I be lifted
          up from the earth, will draw all men unto me."
          He has been lifted up, and He will save every son and daughter of
          Adam and Eve, except the sons of perdition, in some kingdom where
          there shall be no more death, no more aches and pains to afflict
          and torment them; and let me assure you that none of those
          kingdoms will be any worse than the one we now inhabit. Jesus
          Christ will draw all men unto him, except those who contend
          against the power of God and against his kingdom until they have
          sealed their own damnation.
          The adversary presents his principles and arguments in the most
          approved style, and in the most winning tone, attended with the
          most graceful attitudes; and he is very careful to ingratiate
          himself into the favour of the powerful and influential of
          mankind, uniting himself with popular parties, floating into
          offices of trust and emolument by pandering to popular feeling,
          though it should seriously wrong and oppress the innocent. Such
          characters put on the manners of an angel, appearing as nigh like
          angels of light as they possibly can, to deceive the innocent and
          the unwary. The good which they do, they do it to bring to pass
          an evil purpose upon the good and honest followers of Jesus
          Christ. Yet the little good, if any, that is in them, they have
          received from God. Lucifer, the son of the morning, has not got a
          good principle, does not say a good word, perform a good act, or
          present a good idea to any people upon this earth or any other
          earth that he has not received from that God whom you and I
          serve. Every thing that is good, every thing that is lovely and
          truthful, virtuous and kind, everything to be admired and desired
          by the pure in heart comes from God, our Father, who dwells in
          heaven. The most wicked person that ever dwelt upon the earth,
          the Lord supports; He gives to him the breath of life, and causes
          His sun to rise upon that poor miserable wretch, who would, if he
          had the power, destroy everything that is good. The Lord our God
          sends His rain upon the just and upon the unjust, and gives food
          and raiment to the good and to the evil; He parcels out the earth
          among his children, and his mercy and loving kindness are over
          all the works of his hands. Though the Lord is thus kind and
          merciful to all, yet he saith, "them that honour me I will honor,
          and they that despise me shall be lightly esteemed."
          In the days before Noah's flood those who served God and kept his
          commandments were prepared to receive glory, immortality and
          eternal life according to the law of the Gospel. When this law
          was given to the people in any age, the kingdom of God was
          established, and the devil and his hosts were made mad even as
          they are at this day.
          We are told that if we would give up polygamy--which we know to
          be a doctrine revealed from heaven and it is God and the world
          for it--but suppose this Church should give up this holy order of
          marriage, then would the devil, and all who are in league with
          him against the cause of God, rejoice that they had prevailed
          upon the Saints to refuse to obey one of the revelations and
          commandments of God to them. Would they be satisfied with this?
          No; but they would next want us to renounce Joseph Smith as a
          true prophet of God then the Book of Mormon then baptism for the
          remission of sins and the laying on of hands for the reception of
          the Holy Ghost. Then they would wish us to disclaim the gift of
          prophecy, and the other gifts and graces of the Holy Spirit, on
          the ground that they are done away and no longer needed in our
          day, also prophets and apostles, etc.
          They want us to yield all these points, transgress the laws God
          has revealed for the salvation of the world, and change all the
          ordinances of God's house, and conform to the dogmas of modern
          Christianity and to the corruptions of the age. Will the
          Latter-day Saints do this? No; they will not to please anybody.
          Shall we have a warfare? We shall; we will war and contend for
          the right, and trust in our God until righteousness is
          established upon the earth, until peace shall reign everywhere,
          until the children of men shall lay down the weapons of their
          warfare and cease to exhaust their ability and ingenuity in
          forming weapons of destruction to slay their fellow men, until
          the minds and affections of mankind shall be turned unto the Lord
          their God, and their energies be directed to beautifying the
          earth and making it like the garden of Eden. We calculate to
          struggle on, and continue to exercise faith and enjoy our
          religion, keeping all the commandments of God, observing the
          ordinances of his house, trying to fulfill all his words,
          trusting in him, and we shall see what this course will come to.
          I can tell the whole world that we shall preach the gospel of
          life and salvation and call upon the children of men to cease
          their wickedness and their warring against God and one another,
          and embrace those saving principles that will lead them to life
          here and to eternal life hereafter. We shall preach on, we shall
          struggle on until the kingdoms of this world shall become the
          kingdoms of our God and his Christ. To be gentle and kind, modest
          and truthful, to be full of faith and integrity, doing no wrong
          is of God; goodness sheds a halo of loveliness around every
          person who possesses it, making their countenances beam with
          light, and their society desirable because of its excellency.
          They are loved of God, of holy angels, and of all the good on
          earth, while they are hated, envied, admired and feared by the
          What, then, is the mission of Satan, that common foe of all the
          children of men? it is to destroy and make desolate. When this
          house was built, every principle, every desire that prompted the
          putting of these materials together, had good for its object in
          making the people comfortable and happy. The desire to build
          cities, open farms, set out orchards and adorn and beautify the
          earth in every possible way is of God. But you say that those who
          do not believe in religion at all do that. Very good, are not
          their lives as much in the hands of God as yours and mine? Does
          He not prompt them day by day to do good, and blessed are they
          who resist not the Spirit. There is a spirit of truth gone forth
          to all the inhabitants of the world. The book of Job says, "but
          there is a spirit in man; and the inspiration of the Almighty
          giveth them understanding." Again, it is written of Jesus, "that
          was the true light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the
          world." "For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither
          cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. But he
          that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made
          manifest, that they are wrought in God."
          There is that in all men which prompts them to do good and
          forsake evil; then there is another principle which prompts them
          to do evil and forsake the good. The few who have moral courage
          enough to yield obedience to the promptings of the Spirit of God,
          bringing themselves in subjection to his will, are the ones who
          compose the church and kingdom of God on the earth, so far as
          they have opportunity. Whatsoever is good is of God, no matter by
          whom possessed or presented. If the devil presents principles
          that are good and pure and lovely, they are not of him, but they
          are of God.
          The devil delights in the work of destruction--to burn and lay
          waste and destroy the whole earth. He delights to convulse and
          throw into confusion the affairs of men, politically, religiously
          and morally, introducing war with its long train of dreadful
          consequences. It is evil which causeth all these miseries and all
          deformity to come upon the inhabitants of the earth. But that
          which is of God is pure, lovely, holy and full of all excellency
          and truth, no matter where it is found, in hell, in heaven, upon
          the earth, or in the planets. Let us live in obedience to the
          good; let us live our religion.
          I do not know that I have explained these things sufficiently
          clear to you. The thread of the whole subject is clearly defined
          in my mind. I know what the children of men are when they come
          upon the earth, and the influence that attends them, and the
          power of satan who lives upon the earth by permission like the
          wicked and ungodly do. Will we live our religion? I hope so. It
          was asked me by a gentleman how I guided the people by
          revelation. I teach them to live so that the Spirit of revelation
          may make plain to them their duty day by day that they are able
          to guide themselves. To get this revelation it is necessary that
          the people live so that their spirits are as pure and clean as a
          piece of blank paper that lies on the desk before the inditer,
          ready to receive any mark the writer may make upon it. When you
          see the Latter-day-Saints greedy, and coveteous of the things of
          this world, do you think their minds are in a fit condition to be
          written upon by the pen of revelation? When people will live so
          that the Spirit of revelation will be with them day by day, they
          are then in the path of their duty; if they do not live according
          to this rule, they live beneath their duty and privileges. I hope
          and pray that we may all live up to our privileges. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 /
          Wilford Woodruff, October 22, 1865
                         Wilford Woodruff, October 22, 1865
           Remarks by Elder Wilford Woodruff, Tabernacle, Great Salt Lake
                                 October 22d, 1865.
                              Reported by E. L. Sloan.
          There is a great responsibility resting upon any prophet,
          apostle, high priest, elder, or any messenger or servant of God,
          who is called to preach the Gospel; and any person who is called
          to preach the Gospel to the children of men is entirely dependent
          upon the Spirit of the Lord for all the principles he may present
          unto those who hear him. Any generation, also, to whom a message
          is sent from heaven, is held responsible for the receiving or
          rejecting of that message.
          It is a very hard matter for the Lord to build up His kingdom
          upon the earth, where the devil has power and dominion over the
          minds of the children of men. It would be impossible for Him to
          do so in this or any other age of the world, unless he found an
          element to work with Him, for the very reason that He has given
          to all men an agency to choose the path in which they will walk.
          This is the reason why there has been so small a portion of time
          since the creation of the world in which God has had an organized
          kingdom upon the earth--when He has had a church that He himself
          has organized, guided, dictated, directed and controlled. The
          devil--Lucifer--the son of the morning, has had great dominion
          here upon the earth; he has had great dominion over the minds of
          the children of men; and the Lord has taken great pains, I may
          say from the creation, to endeavour to establish His kingdom, to
          present His laws upon this earth, and to get the children of men
          to obey those laws that they might fulfil the object of their
          The Lord gave father Adam the priesthood, and the Gospel of the
          Lord Jesus Christ, after the fall. When he went out into the
          dreary world, driven from the Garden of Eden, he received the
          Gospel, he received the priesthood, and he started forth upon the
          face of the earth with the keys of the kingdom of God, to
          endeavour to establish the works of righteousness upon the earth.
          He gave this priesthood to his sons. A number of them were
          ordained high priests. But in the commencement we find not only
          the work of God but the work of the devil manifest in the hearts
          of men. Cain was stirred up in anger against his brother Abel,
          and rose up and slew him, shedding innocent blood, and the power
          of evil commenced in the beginning. We find from the Bible, as
          well as from other revelations which God has given us, that Adam
          and the early patriarchs, those who were willing to be led by the
          law of God in that generation, received the high priesthood, and
          lived to a great age. It is said Methuselah lived to be almost
          1,000 years old, and so did father Adam and others. They held the
          priesthood, and taught their children truth and righteousness to
          establish the kingdom of God in their day and generation. Herein
          is where I say the Lord commenced and laboured to establish his
          kingdom and to guide men to receive the word of the Lord, that
          they might walk in obedience to His laws, fulfil the object of
          their creation and be saved when they got through with this
          probation,--that they might keep their estate and receive an
          exaltation and glory in the presence of God.
          We are informed by revelation that Adam, three years previous to
          his death, "called Seth, Enos, Cainan, Mahalaleel, Jared, Enoch,
          and Methuselah. Who were all high priests, with the residue of
          his posterity who were righteous, into the valley of
          Adam-ondi-ahman," and there bestowed upon them his last
          patriarchal blessing; and he prophesied what would take place
          even till the coming of Messiah, which prophecy is said to be
          written in the Book of Enoch. But men soon began to work
          corruption and unrighteousness on the earth in that early age;
          and in tracing the history of the church and kingdom of God from
          those prophets down, we find that the majority of the human
          family were unwilling to keep the commandments of God or to live
          according to those principles which were revealed to them for
          their salvation. It was but a little time after, comparatively
          speaking, that Enoch, who was acquainted with the teachings of
          Adam and of his fathers who held the holy priesthood, laboured to
          gather the people together to practise righteousness, but the
          majority of them would not be guided by him. He laboured 365
          years, we are informed by revelation teaching them principles of
          righteousness, that they might become sanctified and prepared to
          receive celestial glory, but his labors were not appreciated by
          them. Why did not Enoch remain on the earth and Zion prevail?
          Because wickedness prevailed. The majority of the human family in
          that generation were wicked; they were not ruled over by the
          Lord; and, hence, there were not men enough on the face of the
          earth, in that generation, who were willing to receive the
          Gospel, keep the commandments of God, and work the works of
          righteousness, for Enoch to have power to remain on the earth.
          Therefore it was that the Lord took Enoch and the city of Enoch
          to himself; for we are informed by revelation that the city was
          translated and all its inhabitants. There were not men enough in
          the days of Enoch who were willing to sustain that which was
          right; one part or other had to leave the earth; and the Lord
          translated Enoch and his city and took them home to Himself.
          You may trace the history of the kingdom of God from that time
          down and you will find this prevailing among the nations of the
          earth. They were prone to evil, to sin, to blasphemy, to lie, to
          steal, to swear, to commit adultery, to pollute the earth which
          they inherited, in their day and generation, and hence it was an
          impossibility for the Lord to establish His kingdom among the
          children of men, unless He could find willing minds enough to
          receive that kingdom, to build it up and sustain it and do the
          works of righteousness. The devil did not make this earth. It
          never belonged to him, and never will; but Lucifer was cast down
          to the earth with the third part of the hosts of heaven, and they
          have dwelt here until to-day. They remain here yet; and they have
          had their effect upon the hearts and minds and lives of the
          children of men for nearly six thousand years--from the time that
          man was cast out of the Garden of Eden into the cold and dreary
          The Lord has set His hand many times in different dispensations
          to establish His kingdom upon the earth, He has raised up
          men--noble spirits--who have come forth and tabernacled in the
          flesh at different periods and times. He has inspired those men;
          given them revelations; filled them with inspiration, with light,
          with truth, with the things of the kingdom of God; and many of
          them had the vision of their minds opened to behold the fate of
          the work of God in all generations--the beginning, the middle and
          the end. Many old prophets have seen, by revelation, our day,
          have seen the sorrow, calamity, war and afflictions in various
          dispensations and ages of the world. The earth had become so
          corrupted under its inhabitants in the days of Noah, that the
          word of the Lord came to him to build an ark; he received
          revelation from God to prepare to save himself and his family,
          while the wicked were destroyed. Enoch before him had seen this
          event; he had seen the same things as Noah. The Lord had shown
          him what was in the future. Whenever a generation have corrupted
          themselves and defiled the earth, and the cup of their iniquity
          is full, the Lord has brought judgments upon that generation.
          This we have ample testimony of from the commencement of the
          Noah was 120 years building the ark, we are informed in the
          Scriptures, and during that time he preached the Gospel. How many
          who were willing to believe his testimony? Only eight souls in
          all, including himself. He was very unpopular, I presume, and had
          as much derision heaped upon his head, for building an ark on dry
          ground, as any man that ever lived on the earth. But Noah was a
          prophet and a messenger of God, called to warn that generation
          and to build an ark, and if he had not done it he would have been
          held responsible for the lives of himself and family and all that
          generation. But he had the Spirit of God and was willing to do as
          he was told, whether the doctrine he preached was popular or
          unpopular. He built the ark, and went into it with his family,
          and they were saved. The history of the flood and of the
          salvation of Noah and his family is well known. He performed the
          work assigned him to do, and was saved; and that generation went
          to hell, there to remain until Christ went and preached the
          Gospel to their spirits in prison that they might be judged like
          men in the flesh. So you may trace the history of the kingdom of
          God through the world, generation after generation, and there is
          no generation that we have ever read of, the majority of whom
          have been willing to serve the Lord.
          Look at the days of Abraham, whose faith was so great that he was
          called the father of the faithful. He was an heir to the royal
          priesthood, another noble spirit, the friend of God. He came upon
          this earth, not in a way of light, but through idolatrous
          parents. His father was an idolator. I do not know who his
          grandfather was; but his father had false gods that he worshipped
          and sacrificed to. God inspired Abraham, and his eyes were opened
          so that he saw and understood something of the dealings of the
          Lord with the children of men. He understood that there was a God
          in heaven, a living and true God, and that no man should worship
          any other God but Him. These were the feelings of Abraham, and he
          taught his father's house, and all around him as far as he had
          the privilege. The consequence was, his father and the idolatrous
          priests of that day sought to take his life. In the book of
          Abraham, translated in our day and generation, we are informed
          that Abraham was bound, and those priests sought to take his
          life, but the Lord delivered him from them. One reason why they
          did so was, that he had gone into those places which his father
          considered sacred, and among the wooden gods which were there,
          and, being filled with anger that his father should bow down and
          worship gods of wood and stone, he broke them. When his father
          saw that his son Abraham had broken his gods he was very angry
          with him. But Abraham, trying to reason with his father, said
          that probably the gods had got to fighting among themselves and
          had killed one another. He tried to bring him to reason, but his
          father did not believe they had life enough to kill one another.
          If he had possessed the spirit which his son had, he would have
          said there is no power with these gods; but he did not, and
          Abraham had to flee from his father's house, confiding in the
          Lord who gave many promises to him and concerning his posterity.
          We have no account of the Lord's having organized a kingdom upon
          the earth in that day; but he gave the priesthood to Abraham, who
          taught his children the principles of righteousness. Isaac taught
          Jacob; and Jacob's sons, the twelve Patriarchs, were taught by
          the priesthood, and God gave unto them many great and glorious
          blessings. From that time until the days of Moses we can trace in
          sacred history that the Lord had witnesses on the earth, from
          time to time, who were raised up and bore record of the truth to
          the people. Moses was raised up and led Israel forty years, he
          was a high priest after the order of Melchizedek, and received
          his priesthood from Jethro, his father-in-law, who received it
          through Abraham. Moses undertook to preach the Gospel to the
          Israelites; but they were very dark, very prone to evil, as well
          as the Gentiles around them; and they had not that faith and the
          fulness of inspiration which the Lord desired, to build up his
          kingdom; consequently, they had a law of carnal commandments
          given to them to bring them to Christ. The Lord labored with
          them, and Moses labored with them; he could not leave them for a
          short time but they were ready to turn to idolatry and make a
          golden calf to worship, or something contrary to the kingdom of
          God. Trace this down to the days of Christ and you will find it
          has been a hard matter for the Lord to get people to have faith
          in Him to build up His kingdom. Jesus came in fulfilment of the
          prophecies; He was the Son of God, and a literal descendant of
          Abraham. He came to his own and his own received him not, though
          he was the Son of God. Take the Jews to-day anywhere in the
          world, and they do not believe in Jesus. I do not say this
          because I wish to find fault with them. I have a great love for
          them as a people. But they have rejected the Messiah, and they
          will remain in unbelief until they go back and rebuild
          Jerusalem--which they will do in this generation--and until the
          Messiah comes. The day will come when Judah will know who Shiloh
          is, and that day is not very far distant. Jesus came, organized
          his church and kingdom and sent the Gospel to the Jews; but the
          Jews failed, through unbelief, and the Gospel was given to the
          Gentiles, to whom one of the ancient apostles said, "If God
          spared not the natural branches, take heed lest He also spare not
          you." Did the kingdom of God remain in the days of Christ, with
          apostles, pastors, teachers, and the gift of the Holy Spirit? But
          a little time elapsed until the Lord could not find men enough
          throughout the whole Gentile world who would receive the kingdom
          of God in its purity, embrace its principles and maintain it on
          the earth. Hence there was a falling away; the gifts and graces
          of the Gospel were lost to men; those who held the priesthood
          were overpowered, and put to death by wicked men. The Church went
          into the wilderness, and all that the prophets had spoken
          concerning the kingdom of God in that day had its fulfilment. 
          Christendom professes to believe the Bible; and all we have asked
          of this generation is to believe the Bible, and then they will
          believe that God will establish his kingdom in the last days, for
          the Bible plainly points it out, and shows that the Lord will
          send an angel bearing the everlasting Gospel to them that dwell
          on the earth, that it may be preached to every nation, kindred,
          tongue and people. All the prophets who have spoken of the last
          days have spoken of this work. Daniel saw it and prophesied of
          it. Isaiah, Jeremiah, and all the prophets have referred to it.
          And the Lord sent his angel, in fulfilment of what he declared he
          would do, who called upon a man on the earth, a literal
          descendant of Abraham and of Joseph--one of the promised seed who
          had been prophesied of in ages past and gone, that he would come
          forth and lay the foundation of the kingdom of God. The angels of
          God ministered unto him; his name was Joseph Smith; and he laid
          the foundation of this kingdom, or this congregation would not be
          before me to-day. You are the fruits of the labors he commenced.
          The Lord has said that in the last days his kingdom should not be
          taken from the earth, nor given to another people; but that the
          kingdoms of this world should become the kingdoms of our God and
          his Christ. We have the Bible, the Book of Mormon, the book of
          Doctrine and Covenants, and other revelations of God to this
          effect. Either this is the kingdom of God or it is not the
          kingdom of God. If it is not the kingdom of God, then are we like
          the rest of mankind; our faith is vain, our works are vain, and
          we are in the same condition of ignorance with regard to the
          Gospel and the purposes of God, as the rest of the world. There
          are tens of thousands throughout these valleys, who know that
          this is the kingdom of God. They know this by the revelations of
          Jesus Christ. It is not the testimony of another man that gives
          me the knowledge for myself. If I had not the testimony of truth
          for myself I would not be qualified to build up this kingdom.
          There is no man or woman qualified to build up the kingdom of God
          if they have not the testimony of truth for themselves.
          I will say to this congregation, Jew and Gentile, believer and
          unbeliever, that this is the great kingdom spoken of by Daniel,
          the commencement of the Zion of our God, which every prophet has
          spoken of who has referred to the Zion of the last days. The Lord
          has sworn by himself, because he could swear by no greater, that
          he will establish it in the latter days. But to do this he must
          get a people to work with him. It could not be done otherwise if
          the world stood for a million years, for it is by the agency
          which men hold that he accomplishes his purposes on the earth.
          The Lord prepared the way for this age and generation, and he has
          raised up some of the noblest spirits in this dispensation that
          ever dwelt in the flesh. He ordained Joseph Smith from before the
          foundation of the world, to come forth and lay the foundation of
          his kingdom. Those that knew Joseph know that he was true and
          faithful unto death. He laboured, after he was ordained with
          Oliver Cowdery, fourteen years, two months and twenty-one-days,
          in the establishment of this work, after he organized the first
          branch, with six members on the 6th day of April, 1830. He was
          martyred on the 27th June, 1844. What did he accomplish, raised
          up, as he was, in the midst of a generation as full of tradition
          as the inhabitants of the earth were in the days of Noah, and
          almost as unbelieving as that generation were? He had to combat
          the errors of our forefathers which had been handed down for
          generations. He built upon the same foundation that Jesus and the
          Apostles built upon. He preached the same Gospel accompanied by
          the same ordinances that they preached. He organized the Church
          in the same way, with the same gifts and blessings, and the same
          Spirit accompanied the Gospel to those who believed. The elders
          went forth calling upon the children of men to repent and be
          baptized for the remission of sins, and have hands laid upon them
          that they might receive the Holy Ghost. And the testimony was,
          that if they obeyed the Gospel they would receive that Spirit.
          Did the Lord sustain that testimony by giving the Holy Ghost from
          the heavens? He did, as every faithful man and woman in this
          Church knows and can bear testimony to before God, angels and
          men. This was a great work. He lived until he sent the Gospel to
          the nations of the earth; he built temples, gave endowments to
          the Twelve and others, and told them that they must bear off this
          kingdom. He accomplished all that the Lord required of him, and
          he sealed his testimony with his blood; and his testimony is in
          force to-day. Had Joseph Smith shrunk from the duty which God
          required of him; had he said, "It is unpopular, I will not make
          as much by preaching the Gospel as if I were to let it alone, I
          will only be persecuted," the consequence would have been he
          would have been damned. The Lord would have taken the priesthood
          from him, and held him responsible for the testimony he had given
          him. We are all in this position. If we do not do our duty and
          bear a faithful testimony to this generation, the Lord will hold
          us responsible. This generation, who have shed the blood of
          Joseph Smith and his brother Hyrum and others of the anointed of
          God, are held responsible for so doing before high heaven, and
          the judgments of God will follow them for shedding innocent
          But did the kingdom stop when the prophets were put to death? No,
          for it is the kingdom of God. It fell to the lot of brother
          Brigham Young to receive the priesthood and hold the keys of the
          kingdom. You who have been acquainted with him for the past
          thirty years, know his life. You know what he has accomplished. I
          have traveled many thousands of miles with him, and have been
          familiar with his labors. No man ever lived in the flesh who
          traveled more miles to carry salvation to the children of men,
          who preached more and did more for the redemption of mankind and
          to carry out the purposes of God, during thirty years, than he
          has done and is doing. The Lord has sustained him, for he is
          going to cut his work short in righteousness. He is determined to
          build up his kingdom as he has promised. Did you ever see an
          elder refuse when called upon to go on a mission to preach the
          Gospel? Hardly one in five thousand. This is because they are
          true and faithful unto God. The Spirit of God is in them. The
          Lord has planted that Spirit in them that they might go and work
          to build up this kingdom.
          The world feel to-day concerning "Mormonism" and this people as
          they did in the days of Noah and Lot concerning the revelations
          of God and those who believed them then. But what of it? The
          unbelief of men does not make the work of God of no effect. The
          Lord requires faithfulness at our hands; and if we do not do our
          duty we will be held responsible before high heaven for the use
          we make of the holy priesthood which has been bestowed upon us.
          While I sat and gazed, last Conference, upon the vast assembly of
          elders who were here in this Tabernacle, I thought of the words
          of Isaiah when his mind was opened and he looked in vision upon
          the future. Said he, "Sing, O heavens, and be joyful, O earth;
          and break forth into singing, O mountains; for the Lord hath
          comforted his people, and will have mercy upon his afflicted."
          What do you see, Isaiah, that should cause you to break forth in
          such language as this? I see what the Gods of eternity see. I see
          what all the prophets and patriarchs before me have seen--that
          the Lord Almighty will build up his Zion upon the earth in great
          power and glory in the latter days. Yes, "But Zion said, the Lord
          hath forsaken me, and my Lord hath forgotten me. Can a woman
          forget her sucking child that she should not have compassion on
          the son of her womb? Yea, they may forget, yet will not I forget
          thee. Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands; thy
          walls are continually before me. Thy children shall make haste;
          thy destroyers and they that made thee waste shall go forth of
          thee." Elder Woodruff quoted from the 13th to the 26th verse of
          Isaiah, 49th chap.; the 1, 2, 3, 7, and 8 verses of the 52nd
          chap.; and the 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 13, 14, 15, and 22 verses of the
          60th chap.)
          Thus chapter after chapter he goes on to declare that Zion's
          strength is in the Lord Almighty; and his strength is with her
          because of her faithfulness and integrity. If the elders of
          Israel had the vision of their minds opened to see Zion in her
          beauty and glory, they would have no time to sin or do evil; but
          they would rise up in the strength of the Lord God of Israel and
          accomplish all that he requires at their hands. Zion is yet in
          her weakness, but the little one shall become thousands, and the
          small one a great nation. We talk of the future and of the
          promises of God to us. They are worthy to be talked of, worthy to
          be lived for, and to rejoice over, because they are true.
          We have warned our own and other nations; and so far our garments
          are clear of the blood of this generation. There never were men
          in the flesh who labored harder and tried more to fulfil the
          commandments of God than the elders of this Church have done.
          Some of our elders have traveled over 100,000 miles in thirty
          years to preach the Gospel and build up the kingdom of God; and
          the Lord Almighty has labored with us. 
          I have an anxiety--a strong desire, to see the people of the
          Latter-day Saints--the inhabitants of Zion, rise up and put on
          their strength. I desire to see them increase in the knowledge of
          the truth, in faith and good works, and in the knowledge of the
          things of the kingdom of God. The Lord is not pleased with
          wickedness and sin. Let any man look at our own beloved country.
          There is more crime now committed in ten years in it, than used
          to be in a century. Will the Lord bear with this? No, he will
          not. He has already destroyed two great and powerful nations that
          dwelt on this continent, and the remnants of another are
          scattered over the country in the miserable few who bear the
          marks of the curse of God upon them--the Indians. If men shed
          innocent blood, do wickedly, and work iniquity, the seed that
          they sow they must reap the harvest of. 
          If the Latter-day Saints, to whom the Lord has revealed the light
          and truth of the Gospel, were to prove unfaithful and rebel
          against God, they would be cursed below any people on the earth,
          below even these miserable Lamanites that we see wandering around
          our settlements; for we know more than they or their fathers
          knew; we know better what the mind and will of God is. It is that
          knowledge that has sustained us for the last thirty years, and
          over. We know this is the kingdom of God; that we are the friends
          of God; that the kingdom will stand; and woe be to that nation,
          kindred, tongue or people, to that individual or family under the
          whole heaven that lifts a hand against the Lord's anointed or
          against the friends of God, for they will feel the chastening
          hand of God. We wish this generation well, and we have labored
          hard to try and save them. Whether men believe or disbelieve is
          nothing to us; it is our business to keep the commandments of
          God. If we live so as to keep the Spirit of God with us we will
          have power to do good and to carry out the things which he
          requires at our hands.
          Be true and faithful; do you duty to yourselves, to your country,
          to your God, and to one another. When we do this we shall
          overcome and inherit eternal lives. May God grant that we may do
          so for Christ's sake. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 /
          Brigham Young, June 17, 1866
                       WE DO NOT CARRY IT, BUT IT CARRIES US.
           Remarks by President Brigham Young, in the Tabernacle, in G. S.
                               City, June 17th, 1866.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          The elders frequently refer to the kingdom of God, and to the
          ordinances thereof, and to this people and their duty and
          privilege to roll it forth and to maintain it until it shall
          triumph, and introduce peace and universal brotherhood over all
          the earth. I will inform all the elders of Israel and their wives
          and their children, and also those who are not of us but whose
          eyes are upon the results arising continually from its
          establishment among men, that when the kingdom of God is
          established, if each member of that kingdom singly and
          individually will do his or her duty it will take care of itself,
          for it is a living, self-moving, self-sustaining, independent and
          heaven-ordained establishment.
          The priesthood of the Son of God in its operations comprises the
          kingdom of God, and I know of no form of expression that will
          better tell what that priesthood is than the language given to me
          by the Spirit, namely, that it is a pure system of government. If
          the people who subject themselves to be governed by it, will live
          strictly according to its pure system of laws and ordinances,
          they will harmonize in one, and the kingdom of God will steadily
          move on to the ultimate triumph of truth and the subjugation of
          wickedness everywhere on this earth.
          The establishment of this kingdom is a standing fact--an
          established truth in the eyes of the rulers and people of all
          nations; it is like a city upon a hill that cannot be hid. Its
          great governing power is not confined to one man, or to ten or a
          thousand men, but the Great architect, manager and
          superintendent, controller and dictator who guides this work is
          out of sight to our natural eyes. He lives on another planet; he
          is in another state of existence; he has passed the ordeals we
          are now passing through; he has received an experience, has
          suffered and enjoyed, and knows all that we know regarding the
          toils, sufferings, life and death of this mortality, for he has
          passed through the whole of it, and has received his crown and
          exaltation, and holds the keys and the power of this kingdom; he
          sways his scepter, and does his will among the children of men,
          among Saints and among sinners, and brings forth results to suit
          his purpose among kingdoms and nations and empires, that all may
          redound to his glory and to the perfection of his work.
          This kingdom is governed and controlled by him who knows all
          things; and he will bring forth the righteous, the just, the
          humble and the meek of the earth, all those who serve him and
          keep his commandments to the enjoyment of the fulness of his
          glory. This kingdom or work is proffered to the whole of the
          human family, even to all who will accept it, upon the terms of
          strict obedience to all its ordinances and requirements, and to
          its organization of prophets and apostles, gifts and blessings
          and graces. All may receive it upon these simple terms, and
          become entitled to all its blessings and privileges. When all who
          constitute this kingdom are faithful to its requirements, it
          moves along; the old ship Zion will not stop; upon this we may be
          satisfied, and give ourselves no further trouble.
          When we look abroad upon the world we see mankind running to the
          east and to the west, to the north and to the south, here and
          there. They are thrown upon the great ocean of human affairs,
          without compass, rudder or pilot to guide their little barques to
          a safe haven of rest. They wander to and fro upon the earth; eyes
          have they, but they see not; ears; but they hear not, and they
          know not whither to go to find that joy and peace their hearts
          seek and long for. Their minds individually are confused and
          distracted, and they cannot see the way of safety when it is
          placed before them; yet here it is--this kingdom, a living
          miracle to all its beholders; this is admitted by and astonishes
          the world.
          The great skill and ability of a single man in bearing off this
          people, and in giving this kingdom success as a nation and as a
          community is often referred to. This is a mistaken idea; but
          still the people who know not and understand not the things of
          God, will entertain it. They attribute the success of this work
          to human agency entirely; they are averse to giving the Lord
          Almighty the credit which justly and rightly belongs to him. The
          same disposition was manifested by the Scribes and Pharisees of
          old. In the 9th chapter of the gospel by John, we have an
          instance of this in the case of the man who was born blind, but
          whose eyes were opened by Jesus Christ. The neighbors and those
          who had seen him that was blind, said: "Is not this he that sat
          and begged." They inquired how his eyes were opened. He told them
          and gave the credit of this great miracle to Jesus Christ. The
          Scribes and Pharisees were not willing to give the glory and
          credit of this miracle to the Saviour; and because the man that
          was blind, and could now see, persisted that Jesus was a prophet
          and had opened his eyes, they cast him out.
          If the Father of Jesus christ were here, and should publicly feed
          the multitudes, and clothe them, and build their houses for them,
          they would not be willing to acknowledge God and give him the
          praise and glory and credit that is due to him. This arises from
          the spirit of opposition which is in the hearts of the children
          of men. It is the spirit and power of evil in opposition to the
          power of good that has forever existed, and ever will exist, and
          here is the warfare.
          We are the subjects of the kingdom of God; if we observe its laws
          and ordinances and transgress none of them--neglect none of
          them--lay aside none of them--then the kingdom itself will bear
          off all its members to the haven of salvation and rest. We know
          this; it is our daily experience. How can the world know the
          things of God? They can read about them, but they cannot know
          them without the Spirit of God; "For what man knoweth the things
          of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the
          things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God." They know
          nothing about this kingdom; we do not expect them to know, and it
          is no marvel to us when we reflect upon all that is done by the
          power of Satan against it, for his power will be continually
          exerted against it through the agency of the ignorant and wicked
          of mankind.
          How long will this opposition continue? until Jesus comes to take
          the kingdom and destroys death and him that hath the power of
          death. Will evil all be destroyed? Yes, the evil which pertains
          to this earth; but still the same principle of evil will exist
          elsewhere. Pertaining to this earth death will be swallowed up in
          victory, and Jesus Christ will come and rule and reign over all
          nations as he does in the kingdom of the Saints. Until then, this
          evil power will be exerted to its uttermost to destroy and lead
          astray every man and woman who loves the truth. It is no matter
          to the devil what religion men profess or what they worship, how
          many sacraments they observe, or how many ordinances they pass
          through, so that they are not legally in the possession of the
          priesthood of the Son of God, and will not worship the true and
          living God in the manner he has directed. The devil does not care
          how much religion there is on the earth; he is a great preacher,
          and to all appearance a great gentleman, and it is necessary that
          he should be, and that all his co-workers should be as like their
          great leader and master as possible. They have forsaken the
          fountain of living waters, and hewed them out cisterns, broken
          cisterns, that can hold no water. It is popular now-a-days to be
          religious, it has become the seasoning to a great deal of
          rascality, hypocrisy and crime.
          Here is the kingdom of God, and the Saints should understand,
          that, if they abide in this kingdom they will realize every
          promise made to them in its ordinances and covenants. There can
          be no safety or merit claimed in forsaking the true Church and
          kingdom of God; there is nothing excellent or praiseworthy in
          this act. What would you think of a person who would forsake a
          good staunch ship at sea in a storm and commit himself to the
          mercy of the raging elements? I should think the same of him as I
          would of those who forsake this Church. The devil has blinded
          their eyes to that degree that they recklessly and wilfully
          plunge into sure and certain destruction. The devil and his
          servants give their sanction and support to anything that will
          lead astray the people, even if it is very like the kingdom of
          God, yet a little different to that order of things which the
          Lord has established in his Church for the salvation of mankind.
          Paul writes to the Corinthians. "Now ye are the body of Christ,
          and members in particular. And God hath set some in the Church,
          first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after
          that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments,
          diversities of tongues."
          The same Apostle writes to the Ephesians upon the same subject,
          "He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above
          all heavens, that he might fill all things. And he gave some,
          apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some,
          pastors and teachers: for the perfecting of the Saints, for the
          work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
          Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge
          of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the
          statue of the fulness of Christ." What kind of ministers do the
          modern Christian churches acknowledge? Are they apostles? No;
          they tell us apostles are done away. Are they prophets? No; they
          tell us prophets are no longer needed in the church in this
          enlightened age, in which, they say, all the people bask in the
          sunshine--in the full blaze of gospel light.
          The kingdom of God on earth is a living, moving, effective
          institution, and is governed, controlled, dictated and led by the
          invisible God whom we serve, who is an exalted living being,
          possessing body, parts and passions, who listens to the prayers
          of his Saints, is a reasonable, merciful, and intelligent being,
          who is filled with knowledge and wisdom, who is full of light and
          glory, and the foundations of whose throne are laid in eternal
          truth; whose personal form is perfect in proportion and beauty.
          He loves the good, and is angry with the wicked every day as it
          is written in the Scriptures. He hates the evil that is done by
          evil doers, and is merciful to the repenting sinner. He is
          beloved by all who know him for the attributes he possesses in
          and of himself, in common with all glorified beings who now dwell
          with him, and who will yet be glorified and crowned with crowns
          of glory, immortality and eternal lives. This kingdom of which we
          are citizens has life in itself; and if we individually and
          collectively do our duty, it will move on to intelligence, to
          glory, and to God. We do not have to carry off the kingdom but,
          through our faithfulness, it giveth us the victory, through our
          Lord Jesus Christ.
          I have seen men who belonged to this kingdom, and who really
          thought that if they were not associated with it, it could not
          progress. One man especially, whom I now think of, who was
          peculiarly gifted in self-reliance and general ability. He said
          as much to the Prophet Joseph a number of times as to say that if
          he left this kingdom, it could not progress any further. I speak
          of Oliver Cowdery. He forsook it, and it still rolled on and
          still triumphed over every opposing foe, and bore off safely all
          those who clung to it. "How is it, brother Brigham, that you
          manage affairs, and dictate and guide and direct this kingdom as
          you do? The secret is I know enough to let the kingdom of God
          alone, and it goes of its own accord.
          When King David, together with all the chosen men of Israel,
          thirty thousand in number, arose to bring up the ark of God from
          the house of Abinadab that was in Gibeah, they put it upon a new
          cart, and Uzzah and Ahio the sons of Abinadab drove the new cart.
          When they came to Nachon's threshing floor, Uzzah put forth his
          hand to the ark of God, and took hold of it, for the oxen shook
          it. The anger of the Lord was kindled against Uzzah, and God
          smote him there for his error; and there he died by the ark of
          God. Let the kingdom alone, the Lord steadies the ark; and if it
          does jostle, and appear to need steadying, if the way is a little
          sideling sometimes, and to all appearance threatens its
          overthrow, be careful how you stretch forth your hands to steady
          it; let us not be too officious in meddling with that which does
          not concern us; let it alone, it is the Lord's work. I know
          enough to let the kingdom alone, and do my duty. It carries me, I
          do not carry the kingdom. I sail in the old ship Zion, and it
          bears me safely above the raging elements. I have my sphere of
          action and duties to perform on board of that ship; to faithfully
          perform them should be my constant and unceasing endeavor. If
          every bishop, every president, every person holding any portion
          of the holy priesthood, every person who holds a membership in
          this church and kingdom would take this course the kingdom would
          roll without our help.
          Let each bishop attend faithfully to his ward, and see that every
          man and woman is well and faithfully and profitably employed that
          the sick and aged are properly cared for that none suffer. Let
          each bishop be a tender and indulgent father to his ward,
          administering a word of comfort and encouragement here, a word of
          advice and counsel there, and a word of chastisement in another
          place, where needed, without partiality, wisely judging between
          man and man, caring for and seeking earnestly the welfare of all,
          watching over the flock of God with the eye of a true shepherd,
          that wolves and dogs may not enter among the flock to rend them.
          Let the presidents and apostles and elders do the work the Lord
          has set them to do, and obey the counsel which is given them, and
          the kingdom will continue to roll, to increase in strength, in
          importance, in magnitude and in power, in wisdom, intelligence
          and glory; and no one need be concerned, for it is the kingdom
          which the Lord our God has established, and has sustained by his
          matchless wisdom and power from the beginning to this day. He
          called upon his servant Joseph Smith, jun., when he was but a
          boy, to lay the foundation of his kingdom for the last time. Why
          did he call upon Joseph Smith to do it? because he was disposed
          to do it. Was Joseph Smith the only person on earth who could
          have done this work? No doubt there were many others who, under
          the direction of the Lord, could have done that work; but the
          Lord selected the one that pleased him, and that is sufficient.
          From the spirit and tenor of the ancient Scriptures and
          revelations which we have received, it is plainly set forth that
          there are men pre-appointed to perform certain works in their
          lifetime, and bring to pass certain ends and purposes in the
          economy of heaven. I believe that Jesus Christ was fore-ordained
          before the worlds were to perform the work he came to do; whom
          God "hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the
          worlds." He was ordained to come to this world and redeem it,
          with mankind upon it and all things pertaining to it. "Who hath
          saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to
          our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was
          given us in Christ Jesus before the world began." The Lord has
          ordained some men to the performance of good and some to the
          performance of evil. Pharaoh was ordained to do the work which he
          performed. "For the Scripture saith unto Pharaoh, even for this
          purpose have I raised thee up, that I might show my power in
          thee, and that my name might be declared throughout all the
          earth." The Lord fulfilled his purpose through the wickedness of
          Pharaoh, and the nations beheld his handy-work in bringing the
          children of Israel out of the wilderness. They had a crooked path
          to walk in, and it was made crooked through their disobedience,
          and hard heartedness. They rebelled against the Lord, and against
          his servant Moses, they would not submit to the ordinances of
          salvation which they had in their possession. After they had
          received many chastisements and many blessings and mercies from
          the hand of God, the children of those who left Egypt possessed
          the land of promise. These works were wrought by the hand of the
          Almighty, and so does he with all his people.
          He has set up his kingdom among us, and the people had better
          look to it closely and see that each one is performing his and
          her duty faithfully. If we do this, then all will be well. Will
          the Latter-day Saints do this? I know not what they will do, but
          I fully believe that we are naturally a little rebellious, and
          that we are practically so; we are a little disposed to have our
          own way too much. There is a disposition among mankind generally
          that leads them to the extreme of being damned rather than to
          submit to anything only that which suits them, unless they are
          made to submit by the strong hand of the law.
          As the world is now so were ancient Israel; they were ignorant of
          God's righteousness, and went about to establish their own
          righteousness, not submitting themselves to the righteousness of
          God. We are too much disposed to believe and act like the world,
          not rendering that submission and humble obedience to the
          righteousness of God which would justly accord with our high
          profession. Many are disposed through their own wickedness "to do
          as I damned please," and they are damned. The volition of the
          creature is free, to do good or to do evil; but we are
          responsible to God for our acts, as man is responsible to man if
          he breaks the laws which man enacts. When we boast of our
          independence to act, it would be well for us to remember that we
          are bounded by these limits; if we transcend them and violate the
          laws of God and man, we shall sooner or later be made to suffer
          the penalty, without any reference to our choice whether we are
          willing to suffer that penalty or not. Hence, true independence
          and freedom can only exist in doing right. It is written, "that
          every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account
          thereof in the day of judgment. For by thy words thou shalt be
          justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned." Every item
          will be recorded and all will be known when the books are opened.
          We are acting upon our own responsibility and agency which God
          has given us, if we secretly violate the laws of righteousness,
          and our wicked works are in the dark while we maintain a pious
          and fair exterior; they are nevertheless known; and for every
          evil word and work which we commit, unless repented of we shall
          be brought into judgment and be made to pay the utmost farthing
          of the penalty. The Spirit of the Lord is in the hearts of all
          people to teach them to cleave to good, and to forsake evil. If
          they will listen to the whisperings of this Spirit when the
          Gospel of Jesus Christ is presented to them, whether by the voice
          of his ministers, or in the written word, their minds will be
          enlightened to understand it.
          Before Joseph Smith made known what the Lord had revealed to him,
          before his name was even known among many of his neighbours, I
          knew that Jesus Christ had no true Church upon the earth. I read
          the Bible for myself; I was supposed to be an infidel and to
          content myself with a moral religion. When I was told to believe
          in Jesus Christ, and that was all that was required for
          salvation, I did not so understand the Bible. I understood from
          the Bible that when the Lord had a church upon the earth it was a
          system of ordinances, of laws and regulations to be obeyed, a
          society presided over and regulated by officers and ministers
          peculiar to itself to answer such and such purposes, and bring to
          pass such and such results, and I have not received a revelation
          to the contrary. Such a system answering the description given in
          the Bible I could not find on the earth, and I was not prepared
          to listen to the men who said "lo here" and "lo there," who
          presented themselves, as they said, as true ministers of heaven.
          When I would ask the ministers of religion, if they were prepared
          to tell me how the kingdom of God should be built up; if that
          which is laid down in the new Testament is not the pattern, all
          the reply I could receive from them was; "but you know, my dear
          friend, that these things are done away." They would tell me that
          ordinances were mere matters of ceremony, that belief in Jesus
          Christ was all-essential and all that was really necessary.
          I could only think of the religious world as a mass of confusion;
          and when I visited England I saw it in its perfection. There I
          saw hundreds of men and women down upon their knees in the middle
          of the streets praying for sinners. In that country it rains
          often, and it is then very muddy. I would stop and listen to
          their cries for the power to come down upon them, etc., and
          concluded that that filled the bill exactly for sectarian
          religion as I looked upon it, no acknowledged ordinances, no
          standard, no beacon light, no compass or rudder to guide the ship
          of Zion. In one of their chapels, on one occasion, where a
          Latter-day Saint sister happened to be present, a young man was
          convicted of his sins, and cried out, saying: "What can I do to
          be saved." That sister answered him, and said: "Repent and be
          baptized for the remission of sins, and you shall receive the
          Holy Ghost." They put her down stairs in double quick time.
          Will the inhabitants of the earth receive the truth? They will
          not. Will the Latter-day Saints live the truth? You answer, "I
          mean to be a good Saint;" yet there are contention and abuse here
          and there. We are elders in this Church--ministers of God to
          perfect the people for the coming of the Son of man. Many of us
          have been in this Church for years, and yet we cannot live in
          peace and dwell together in union; and if we cannot do this, how
          can we sanctify the people; and if we cannot live and love each
          other as we should, be as neighbours as we should, serve the Lord
          together as we should, deal with each other as we should,
          fellowship each other as we should how are we going to prepare
          the people for the coming of the Son of man? It is folly in the
          extreme to think of it, unless we set the pattern ourselves.
          I believe it is our duty to imitate everything that is good,
          lovely, dignified and praiseworthy. We ought to imitate the best
          speakers, and study to convey our ideas to each other in the best
          and choicest language, especially when we are dispensing the
          great truths of the Gospel of peace to the people. I generally
          use the best language I can command. We often hear people excuse
          themselves for their uncouth manners and offensive language, by
          remarking "I am no hypocrite," thus taking to themselves credit
          for that which is really no credit to them. When evil arises
          within me let me throw a cloak over it, subdue it instead of
          acting it out upon the false presumption that I am honest and no
          hypocrite. Let not thy tongue give utterance to the evil that is
          in thine heart, but command thy tongue to be silent until good
          shall prevail over the evil, until thy wrath has passed away and
          the good spirit shall move thy tongue to blessings and words of
          kindness. So far I believe in being a hypocrite. This is
          practical with me. When my feelings are aroused to anger by the
          ill-doings of others, I hold them as I would hold a wild horse,
          and I gain the victory. Some think and say that it makes them
          feel better when they are mad, as they call it, to give vent to
          their madness in abusive and unbecoming language. This, however,
          is a mistake. Instead of its making you feel better, it is making
          bad worse. When you think and say it makes you better you give
          credit to a falsehood. When the wrath and bitterness of the human
          heart are moulded into words and hurled with violence at one
          another, without any check or hindrance, the fire has no sooner
          expended itself than it is again re-kindled through some trifling
          course, until the course of nature if set on fire; "and it is set
          on fire of hell."
          If this practice is continued, it will lead to alienation between
          man and wife, parents and children, brethren and sisters, until
          there is no fellowship to be found in the hearts of the people
          for one another. How can we, and be consistent, with the same
          tongue bless God, even the Father, and curse man who is made in
          the similitude of God. Out of the same mouth should not proceed
          blessings and cursings, but bless and curse not. "Who is a wise
          man and endued with knowledge among you? Let him show out of a
          good conversation his works with meekness and wisdom." The wisdom
          that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and
          easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without
          partiality, and without hypocrisy."
          As I have often remarked on former occasions, confidence is lost
          from among mankind; men who are in authority, who sit at the head
          of nations, kingdoms and governments, all fear the knife of the
          assassin, and the torch of the incendiary. Wickedness has
          submerged the world, and confidence and good faith have fled. We
          are trying to restore the lost treasure to the world. Then, let
          me exhort the Latter-day Saints to live a life that is worthy of
          imitation. Envy not those who do better than you do; do not
          pursue them with malice, but try to shape and frame your life by
          theirs. We are trying to govern ourselves, and if we continue
          trying and faint not, we shall assuredly conquer. Let us from
          this time forth live so as to create confidence in all men with
          whom we deal and come in contact; and treasure up each particle
          of confidence we obtain as one of the most precious possessions
          mortals can possibly possess. When by my good actions I have
          created confidence in my neighbour towards me, I pray that I may
          never do anything that will destroy it. I have tried to do this,
          and have constantly endeavored to have it increase within me,
          that when my word is given it may be just as good as the word of
          an angel. Let us seek always to be guided by the spirit of truth
          in our utterances, that we may never say anything which we shall
          afterwards regret.
          The psalmist inquires, "Lord, who shall abide in thy tabernacle?
          who shall dwell in thy holy hill? He that walketh uprightly, and
          worketh righteousness, and speaketh the truth in his heart. He
          that backbiteth not with his tongue, nor doeth evil to his
          neighbor, nor taketh up a reproach against his neighbor. In whose
          eyes a vile person is condemned; but he honoreth them that fear
          the Lord. He that sweareth to his own hurt and changeth not, etc.
          Let every man honour his word that he has given to his neighbor,
          although it may be to his disadvantage and loss, yet in the
          future it will be to his gain. Preserve your honour, and your
          integrity, and ever cherish the confidence that men repose in
          May the Lord bless you. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 /
          Brigham Young, August 12, 1866
                           Brigham Young, August 12, 1866
                                REVEALED FROM HEAVEN.
                 Remarks by President Brigham Young, in the Bowery,
                          in G.S.L. City, August 12, 1866.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          I have a few words to say to the Latter-day Saints this
          afternoon, and if I had time, I have many I could say. I would
          exhort the Latter-day Saints to live in peace, to pursue a course
          that will effectually preserve the peace that is taught them in
          the Gospel of the Son of God, and avoid by every possible and
          righteous means entering into contention, quarreling,
          disputations, law suits, &c., &c.
          You have heard from brother Geo. A. Smith this afternoon a little
          of the history of this Church and people, and the cause of their
          coming to these valleys. I am thankful that the rehearsal of
          those occurrences has ceased to irritate me as it did formerly.
          But we are here, and we wish to enjoy peace; we earnestly desire
          it, and we calculate to have it. We are where our enemies cannot
          come from Carthage and Warsaw before breakfast, and from
          Springfield in two days. We are so far off, and it is so
          inconvenient to bring this people to sorrow and affliction in the
          way it was formerly done, that they consider another plan
          necessary to be instituted. I wish to tell you what it is.
          Brother George A. this afternoon has referred to the lawyers.
          Where the carcass is there will the eagles be gathered together,
          and it seems they think that there is one here to which they are
          gathering. I want them to live here; but I want them to plant
          their own potatoes and hoe them. It would appear that they think
          that a civilized community cannot live long together without
          contention and consequent law suits. I think that a community is
          civilized so far as it is free from contentions, law suits and
          litigation of every kind. We wish our friends to come here, and
          participate with us in the good things the Lord has provided for
          his people; but we do not want contention. When I hear men and
          women say that they will go to a Gentile court to have their
          difficulties adjusted, I think they will go to hell unless they
          refrain from such a spirit.
          The law is made for the lawless and disobedient, not for the
          good, wise, just and virtuous. Law is made for the maintenance of
          peace, not for the introduction of litigation and disorder.
          What is the true relationship of lawyers to the law and to the
          community? They should be the true representatives of peace; it
          should be their business to promote it. I am now taking the
          liberty of discharging a duty I owe to the lawyers in telling
          them what their duty is. They read the law; they do or should
          understand the law of the United States, of the States, and of
          the Territories and cities in which they live, and whenever they
          have an opportunity of telling the people how to live in a way to
          avoid litigation, it is their duty so to do. Then if they wish to
          get a living, instead of picking people's pockets, as is too
          commonly the case, let them have their stores, and bring on goods
          and trade, buy farms and follow the healthy and honorable
          professing of farming, and raise their own provisions, and stock
          enough for themselves and some to part with, and when their
          services are wanted in the law, give it as freely as we do the
          Gospel. It is said by lawyers, "We cannot spend our time without
          some remuneration." You have no need to spend your time only in
          some way to produce means for your subsistence. You can give
          legal advice freely, and pursue an honorable and productive
          business for a living.
          Once I had the pleasure of hearing of a lawyer in old
          Massachusetts, who attended strictly to his duty. He came into
          the western part of Massachusetts and bought him a farm. He was
          probably as sound a lawyer as Boston ever produced. They wanted
          to know why he went to farming instead of following the
          profession of the law. He replied, that according to the present
          practice a man could not answer the demands of his clients and be
          honest. When any of the people would come to him for advice, if
          he was ploughing in the field, he would stop his team and request
          them to tell him the truth, to state the case as it was, keeping
          nothing back on their side of the question. When he had heard
          their case he would advise them to settle the affair without
          going to law, telling them what was right and just. When they
          would ask him what he charged for his advice, he would receive
          nothing; his team had been resting while he had been conversing,
          and he would go to ploughing again. One lawyer has actually lived
          in the United States who did not depend upon the practice of the
          law for a living, but followed a legitimate business and gave
          legal advice freely to all who asked it. In pursuing this course
          he did not follow the practice of picking the pockets of the
          widow and the fatherless.
          We have a few lawyers here, and I know the object of their being
          here. I object to their introducing litigation among this people.
          In some instances it may be necessary to sue men. We have some
          men in this community who are dishonest; they will run into debt,
          and will not pay their debts. What shall we do with such men?
          Shall we sue them? Yes; if they will not pay their debts and have
          the means to do so, sue them; turn them over to the law, which is
          made for such characters, but they should first be deprived of
          the fellowship of the Saints. A man who will run into debt, when
          he has no prospect of paying it back again, does not understand
          the principles that should prevail in a well regulated community,
          or he is wilfully dishonest. In this country no persons need run
          into debt to get bread to feed themselves and their families.
          There is no need to go into the second house in this community to
          ask for food. Those who need can obtain food at the first house,
          in nearly every instance, at which they will apply. This
          community feed the poor and the hungry, and clothe the naked, and
          they will not let the stranger, or those in necessity, ask alms
          without responding to their calls, if it is in their power to
          relieve them. Consequently, there is no need of any person
          running into debt without a prospect of paying. Men in our
          community run into debt to our brethren, and if they are asked
          for the pay, they think it is not saint-like if they are asked to
          sell their stock or put themselves about in the least to pay
          their just debts. I have had to contend for, and defend men of
          business who have sought to do the community good in transacting
          business here, from being imposed upon in this way. But there is
          no need of further explanation regarding this; we all understand
          it; if there are strangers, or any who belong to the church, who
          do not understand it, watch the careers and lives of those who
          have been long in the church and who understand true principle,
          and see whether they pay their debts or not.
          Now, I ask every man and woman who wishes an honorable name in
          the Church and kingdom of God upon the earth, if they have
          entertained any idea of going to law, to banish it from their
          minds at once. We have our Bishop's courts; they can tell us what
          is right. We have our High Councils, and we have also our
          Selectmen here who are sustained by the suffrages of the people.
          If you are not satisfied with the decisions of the Bishop's court
          and the High Council, call upon the Selectmen, and let them judge
          your case. We may be told that it is necessary for us to have a
          lawyer to present our case in a legal manner before the courts;
          but the less we have to do with this class of professional men
          the easier and cheaper will our difficulties be settled. When a
          lawyer is going to court with a case, if you ask him, "do you
          calculate to be honest?"
          "Yes, sir."
          "Most assuredly."
          "Do you expect, in presenting a case to the court, to do anything
          more than to present the facts in the case?"
          "Where do you get the facts which you present before the judge
          and jury?"
          "From the witnesses."
          "Have you men of common sense on the jury?"
          "Yes; the best we can find; they are men of good capacity and
          capable of judging right from wrong."
          Then what good does it do to reiterate the testimony of witnesses
          before the jury? It is an endeavor to make white black and black
          white, to make the jury believe that they do not know anything,
          but that "I know it all," and "I tell you law," &c. Lawyers will
          quote law that has been obsolete for years before a jury who may
          not be so well acquainted with the letter of the law, and this
          they will do to endeavor, if possible, to blind the eyes and
          confuse the minds of the judge and jury, to make out something
          that is different from the facts in the case. Is this the
          business and duty of a lawyer? It is not. His duty is to place
          facts before the court. The jury can hear the witnesses as well
          as the lawyer can, the judge can hear the witnesses as well as
          the lawyer can, and when the simple facts are told, then let just
          men decide.
          It should be considered beneath the profession of a lawyer to
          endeavor to clear the guilty, and place the innocent in bonds or
          bring them into disrepute. I wish to say to that class of
          gentlemen who are here, that if they expect to break up this
          people by lawsuits, I think they will have a hard time. I will
          use my influence with every good man, whether he is in the church
          or out of it, never to think of going to law. What comes of
          litigation? Poverty and degradation to any community that will
          encourage it. Will it build cities, open farms, build railroads,
          erect telegraph lines and improve a country? It will not; but it
          will bring any community to ruin. It draws hundreds of men within
          the circle of its influence, who crowd the court rooms and spend
          days and weeks and months of their precious time for naught, time
          that should be employed in getting lumber from the kanyons, in
          building houses and in providing comfortable means of subsistence
          for their families. Does it make peaceable, honest, and
          industrious citizens? It does not, but it engenders strife and
          habits of intemperance and idleness. Instead of crime being
          lessened by its influence, it only helps to swell the dark
          We have not been broken up, as has been anticipated, by military
          force, and now it is expected that a course of law suits will
          accomplish what the military failed to do. I will say one thing
          to my friends, or to my enemies as they may consider themselves
          (I myself am not an enemy to any man, yet I am an enemy to some
          actions), if you undertake to drive a stake in my garden with an
          intention to jump my claim, there will be a fight before you get
          it; if you come within an enclosure of mine with any such intent,
          I will send you home, God being my helper. You can occupy and
          build where you please, but let our claims alone. We have spent
          hundreds of thousands of dollars in taking out the waters of our
          mountain streams, fencing in farms and improving the country, and
          we cannot tamely suffer strangers, who have not spent one day's
          labour to make these improvements, to wrest out homesteads out of
          our hands. There is land enough in the country: go to and improve
          it, as we have improved the country from its wild state. Is it
          not a strange thing that men cannot see anything only what the
          "Mormons" possess; hence, I swear it, by the Gods of eternity, if
          we are obliged to leave this country, we will leave it as
          desolate as we found it, and we will hunt those who would compel
          us to leave to the last minute. Let us alone, and help us to
          build up cities and towns and villages in these mountains,
          instead of seeking to destroy the few industrious inhabitants
          that are here and have made the country. You cannot destroy this
          community; it never can be done. Remember that. And you men and
          women who think of going to Gentile law to have your difficulties
          adjusted, I would advise you to stop it, and let the lawyers go
          into other business. 
          We have plenty of good lawyers who belong to the Church, and
          there are more coming. I have some friends coming here, as
          eminent lawyers as Massachusetts can produce. I advised them to
          bring their capital and so invest it that they could live without
          depending upon litigation and the practice of the law. Ever since
          this Church was first organized until now we have had to manage
          and scheme to escape the toils and snares of our enemies. We have
          had to ask God for wisdom that we might know how to wind our way
          through the difficulties you have just heard Brother George A.
          Smith relate. Lawyers will plead law for the Latter-day Saints as
          well as for anybody else in the world if they can get their pay
          for it. I have seen too much of this for 34 years past. In the
          days of Joseph Smith lawyers would get together and hatch out a
          vexatious lawsuit; one would agree to defend him and another
          would agree to plead against him, and this with a view to get his
          money. Thousands, and tens of thousands of dollars have been
          collected to pay lawyers' fees. "Brother Brigham, how much have
          you paid?" Not one farthing. I defied our enemies to get anything
          against me wherein I had in any way transgressed the laws of my
          country; and if they tried unlawfully, and with a design to put
          me in bonds, and to get money from me, they would have to run
          some risk. We have had to work and pray in order to get along
          when we had lawyers watching us all the time to get something
          against the leaders of this people whereby they could in some way
          bring a lawsuit against them.
          Now, they suppose that they have got us safely on polygamy. What
          about that? I would say to Congress that if they will pass a law,
          making it death for any man to hold illicit intercourse with any
          woman but his lawful wife, we would meet them half way on that
          ground. It is not uncommon for men who have not been lawfully
          married to any woman, but who pass as old bachelors, to have
          children by several women. A recent case occurred in Europe which
          illustrates this point. Prince Christian of Holstein, who has
          recently married one of the daughters of Victoria, Queen of
          England, has what is termed a morganatic wife in Germany, by whom
          he has several children, yet the first lady in Europe, as Queen
          Victoria is called, with the knowledge of the fact that this
          Prince, who proposed for her daughter's hand, was the father of
          several children by a woman, who to all intents and purposes was
          his wife, accepts him as a suitable match for her youthful
          daughter. The first Court in Europe is not shocked by an alliance
          of this kind, no more than is the first society of this country
          by similar occurrences in the cities east. Men may do as they
          please with women, have numerous children by them, and take as
          many liberties with them as if they were their wives, and yet not
          call them wives, and modern society smiles upon them. But
          whenever a man applies the sacred name of wife to the mother of
          his children, if he happen to have more than one, then the world
          professes to be wonderfully shocked at the idea. What
          Such men will go to hell for ruining innocent women and
          increasing illegitimate children in the land. The community or
          nation that indulge in such practices will be damned. If I have
          wives, I take care of them, and I want my neighbors to let them
          and my daughters alone. Do you understand it? If you do not, and
          should undertake to infringe upon any of them, I will point my
          finger at you. Our young men, and we have many, live virtuous
          lives with regard to illicit communication with the sexes; they
          observe the law which has been given to this people. Ask the
          Lamanites if their women ever complained of being insulted by any
          of our men at any time, and they cannot produce an instance. How
          is it with the outsiders--mountaineers, trappers, hunters,
          soldiers, and other men who have been brought in contact with
          them. What will the Indians tell you about them? By mingling with
          those outsiders the Indians will soon be in the dust. Many of
          them have gone there already by mingling with the Gentiles; the
          seeds of death have been sown among them, and many of them are
          dying off; and they will continue to die through that cause. When
          our Elders go abroad to preach the Gospel, or when they remain at
          home, if they do not live according to the law of God, we sever
          them from the Church, and have no further fellowship with them.
          The doctrine of plurality of wives was revealed to this people
          from heaven, and if heaven had revealed that we should have no
          wife at all, it would have been as faithfully observed as the
          present law, even if it should result in the depopulation of the
          world, according to the profession of the Shaking Quakers. But
          the Lord did not get his kingdom in that way. The kingdoms he
          possesses and rules over are his own progeny. Every man who is
          faithful and gets a salvation and glory, and becomes a king of
          kings and Lord of Lords, or a father of fathers, it will be by
          the increase of his own progeny. Our Father and God rules over
          his own children. Wherever there is a God in all the eternities
          possessing a kingdom and glory and power it is by means of his
          own progeny. I am not going to ask the people whether they
          believe it or not; and I do not want Brother Heber to do it
          either, for it is none of their business. When I tell the truth I
          do not ask any one's testimony to swear to it.
          The economy of heaven is to gather in all, and save everybody who
          can be saved. Do we wish to destroy people? We do not, not even
          those ignorant, blood-thirsty Lamanites. Did we ever destroy? No;
          it is not our doctrine; but our doctrine is to build up and save
          life instead of destroying it. Is it necessary on any occasion,
          and under any circumstances whatever? Yes, let a man meet me with
          a design to kill me, and I am going to get the first blow if I
          can. I have not come to die for the sins of the world as our
          Savior, Jesus Christ, did. It was necessary for him to be killed;
          but it is not necessary for me. It was not necessary for Joseph
          Smith to be killed, if the people had believed his testimony; but
          as the testator has sealed it with his blood, his testimony is in
          force on all the inhabitants of the earth, and wherever it goes
          those who reject it will be damned. Our doctrine is to preach the
          Gospel of life and salvation, and get every man, woman and child
          to believe and embrace it, and live as near to its requirements
          as possible. That is the duty of the Elders of Israel, and it is
          our duty to preserve ourselves, our wives and children, whether
          we have many or few. Why does not our government make a law to
          say how many children a man shall have? They might as well do so
          as to make a law to say how many wives a man shall have.
          There are a few in the Government who will listen to any
          testimony against us, no matter how false. The man who was
          referred to this morning has given testimony against us,
          respecting matters here, which is utterly false. After making
          such infamous statements, that man could not live here
          twenty-four hours, if it were not that we are Latter-day Saints
          who live here. By letting him alone, however, he will kill
          himself. There is also a man down the street who tried to exhibit
          the endowments to a party who was here. You will see what becomes
          of that man. Do not touch him. He has forfeited every right and
          title to eternal life; but let him alone, and you will see by and
          by what will become of him. His heart will ache, and so will the
          heart of every apostate that fights against Zion; they will
          destroy themselves. It is a mistaken idea that God destroys
          people, or that the Saints wish to destroy them. It is not so.
          The seeds of sin which are in them are sufficient to accomplish
          their destruction. Every government of the world has the seeds of
          its own destruction in itself.
          I hope and trust and pray that the government of our country may
          remain, because it is so good; but if they cut off this, and cast
          out that, and institute another thing, they may destroy all the
          good it contains. This, I hope, they will not do; they cannot do
          it. I expect to see the day when the Elders of Israel will
          protect and sustain civil and religious liberty and every
          constitutional right bequeathed to us by our fathers, and spread
          those rights abroad in connection with the Gospel for the
          salvation of all nations. I shall see this whether I live or die.
          May the Lord bless you. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 11 /
          Brigham Young, July 28, 1866
                            Brigham Young, July 28, 1866
             Remarks by President Brigham Young, in Springville, Sunday,
                                   July 28, 1866.
                               Reported by G. D. Watt.
          Brother Ezra T. Benson's remarks referring to our present
          difficulties with the Indians, and prospects of future
          difficulties, should be well considered by this people. As we
          have here an assemblage of the people from other settlements, I
          wish to impress them with the necessity of treating the Indians
          with kindness, and to refrain from harboring that revengeful,
          vindictive feeling that many indulge in. I am convinced that as
          long as we harbor in us such feelings towards them, so long they
          will be our enemies, and the Lord will suffer them to afflict us.
          I certainly believe that the present affliction, which has come
          upon us from the Indians, is a consequence of the wickedness
          which dwells in the hearts of some of our brethren. If the Elders
          of Israel had always treated the Lamanites as they should, I do
          not believe that we should have had any difficulty with them at
          all. This is my firm conviction, and my conclusion according to
          the light that is in me. I believe that the Lord permits them to
          chasten us at the present time to convince us that we have to
          overcome the vindictive feelings which we have harbored towards
          that poor, down-trodden branch of the house of Israel.
          I spoke a harsh word here yesterday with regard to a man who
          professes to be a Latter-day Saint who has been guilty of killing
          an innocent Indian. I say to-day that he is just as much a
          murderer through killing that Indian, as he would have been had
          he shot down a white man. To slay an innocent person is murder
          according to the law of Moses. Not that we believe that the law
          of Moses should, in all its bearings, be observed by us; but we
          believe that it has been fulfilled in a great measure with regard
          to the law of sacrifice. The Lord said to Noah, before the law
          was given to Moses: "Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his
          blood be shed; for in the image of God made he man." Those who
          shed the blood of the innocent at the present day will have to
          pay the penalty here, or come short of receiving the glory and
          the peace which they anticipate receiving hereafter. This may
          appear very hard and unreasonable to some.
          Brother Benson expressed himself as though some of the brethren
          felt like wiping out the Lamanites in these regions, root and
          branch. The evil passions that arise in our hearts would prompt
          us to do this, but we must bring them into subjection to the law
          of Christ.