Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15
                               Journal of Discourses,
                                      Volume 15
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 /
          Brigham Young, April 28th, 1872
                           Brigham Young, April 28th, 1872
                         REMARKS BY PRESIDENT BRIGHAM YOUNG,
                  Delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                         Sunday Afternoon, April 28th, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          I am very happy for the privilege of meeting with the Latter-day
          Saints, and I have reason to be thankful that I am able to speak
          a little to them. It brings many things to our reflections and
          causes many thoughts to arise. When we look over the human family
          what a variety we see and especially upon the subject of
          religion. We take Christianity, for instance, and as nations, as
          people, we believe in and on the Lord Jesus Christ. Most of
          Christian professors believe in the ordinances, or some portions
          of the ordinances of the house of God. Most of Christians believe
          in the breaking of bread, in blessing it and partaking of it in
          remembrance of the broken body of our Savior; also in taking the
          cup, consecrating it and then partaking of it, in remembrance of
          his blood that was shed for the sins of the world. And then take
          up the hundreds of different denominations and what a motley mass
          we present in our faith, feelings, sympathies, judgment, passions
          and conduct; man against man, priest against priest, people
          against people. Now let the Christian denominations come here:
          "Yes, the Latter-day Saints believe in taking the Sacrament, it
          is true, but what a pity," say they. "They profess to believe on
          the Lord Jesus Christ. Oh dear! I wish they did! Yes, they seem
          to manifest great confidence in the atonement, in the ordinances
          and commandments. I wish they were a better people! What a pity
          it is that they are such an outlawed, sinful race of beings as
          they are! What a pity!!" "How we Christians do pity the
          Latter-day Saints." Then again, how we Latter-day Saints do pity
          the Christians! What a spectacle! And see us, as Christians,
          warring with each other! What for? For our pure faith, for our
          holy desires, for our great charity to each other, for the love
          of Christ, for the salvation of the souls of the children of men. 
          Now is not this a spectacle to present to angels? Why if the Lord
          Almighty was not beyond the conception of humanity in charity and
          love, in mercy and longsuffering, in patience and kindness to his
          creatures, where would we have been ere this? We would have been
          weltering in his wrath, we would have been drinking his hot
          displeasure. But he is more merciful than we are. I have thought
          a great many times I was very thankful I was not the Lord
          Almighty. I should be consuming my enemies. How I should contend
          against those who hate me. I am glad I am not the Lord. And to
          see the Latter-day Saints here following the example of the
          Savior when he took his disciples into an upper room, and bade
          some of them go and prepare to partake supper with him the last
          time before his crucifixion. He took the bread and blessed and
          brake. "Take and eat ye all of this, for this is my body in the
          New Testament." He took the cup and blessed it; "Drink ye all of
          this, for this is my blood in the New Testament." Here we are
          doing the same to-day. What more? Do this until I come, for I
          will neither eat nor drink any more with you in this capacity
          until I drink anew with you in my father's kingdom on this earth.
          Will he do it? Certainly he will. "Do this in remembrance of me
          until I come." We are doing this to-day. Do not other Christians
          do the same? They do. How do we Latter-day Saints feel towards
          them? Were we to yield to the carnal passions of the natural man
          and we had the power of the Almighty we would spew our enemies
          out of our mouths, yes, we would hiss them from the face of human
          society for their evils, their malice, for the revenge and wrath
          they have towards us. But we are not the Almighty. I am glad of
          it. I am happy in the reflection that I have not the power, and I
          hope and pray I may never possess it until I can use it like a
          God, until I can wield it as our Father in heaven wields it, with
          all that eternity of majesty, glory, charity, with his judgment,
          discretion, and with every faculty of compassion. I am happy in
          the reflection that I do not possess the power. I am glad you
          elders do not, I am really glad you do not. Will he ever grant
          power to his Saints on the earth? Yes, they will take the
          kingdom, and possess it for ever and ever; but in the capacity
          they are now, in the condition that they now present themselves
          before God, before the world and before each other? Never, never!
          until we are sanctified, until we are filled with the wisdom of
          God, with the knowledge of God, will he bequeath the power that
          he has in reserve for his Saints; never will the Saints possess
          it until they are prepared to wield it with all that judgment,
          discretion, wisdom and forbearance that the Lord Almighty wields
          in his own capacity, and uses at his pleasure? How do you feel
          about it, brethren? Do not you wish sometimes you had power to
          pinch their ears? Do not you wish you had power to stop them in
          their mad career? Let the Lord Almighty do this. You think his
          eye is upon the work of his hands? It is. His ears are open to
          the prayers of his children, he will hear their prayers, he will
          answer their desires; and when we as a people possess the
          abundance of that patience, that longsuffering and forbearance
          that we need, to possess the privileges and the power that the
          Lord has in reserve for this people, we will receive to our
          utmost satisfaction. We shall not have it now. The Lord says, "I
          can not give it to you now." This church has now been traveling
          over forty-two years--forty-two years the sixth day of this month
          since it was organized with six members. What have we learned? We
          assembled in Missouri, at the place of gathering on the borders
          of the Lamanites, and there we bought our farms and built our
          houses; but could we stay there? Were we prepared then to enter
          into Zion, to build up the Zion of God and possess it? We were
          not, we must suffer. "You Latter-day Saints, you, my children,"
          says the Lord, "are not prepared to receive Zion." Why, we have
          heard detailed by Elder Carrington the conduct of Elders at the
          present time, dishonest in the matter of a few shillings or
          dollars. Dishonest, covetous, selfish, grasping for that which is
          not our own; borrowing and not paying; taking that which does not
          belong to us; dishonest in our deal; oppressing each other. Are
          we fit for Zion? I say nothing to the Christian world with regard
          to this. Let them bite and devour as much as they please, it does
          not belong to the Latter-day Saints at least. Could we stay in
          Independence? No, we could not. What was the reason? Here are
          some hearing me talk who were there--some who are aged, some here
          who were then children and infants, some who were born there. But
          we stayed a very few years--two or three--and we must get up and
          march. Why did we leave? Why the enemy is upon us, our enemies
          are gathered around us, our foes are besetting us on every hand.
          There goes a house burned up; there is a man that is whipped;
          there is a family turned out of doors! What is the matter with
          all you Latter-day Saints? Can the world see? No. Can the Saints
          see? No, or few of them can; and we can say that the light of the
          Spirit upon the hearts and understandings of some Latter-day
          Saints is like the peeping of the stars through the broken
          shingles of the roof over our heads, when we are watching through
          the silent watches of the night and behold the glimmer of a
          twinkling star. "Oh yes, I see, I see, that we are not prepared
          to receive the kingdom." Another one says, "Yes, I can see, we
          were too selfish." Another one says, "I see, the wicked must be
          prepared for their doom as well as the Saints for their
          exaltation, and that the wicked are a rod in the hands of God to
          chasten the Saints." Here are the two classes--the righteous and
          the unrighteous, and the righteous must be prepared by suffering
          and by rendering strict obedience to the commandments of heaven.
          It seems to be absolutely necessary in the providence of Him who
          created us, and who organized and fashioned all things according
          to his wisdom, that man must descend below all things. It is
          written of the Savior in the Bible that he descended below all
          things that he might ascend above all. Is it not so with every
          man? Certainly it is. It is fit then that we should descend below
          all things and come up gradually, and learn a little now, and
          again, receive "line upon line, precept upon precept, here a
          little and there a little." But hark, do the people hear it? Do
          the people understand it? Scarcely! scarcely! Do the Latter-day
          Saints understand these principles, and are we prepared to
          receive Zion? Are we prepared to receive the Kingdom and are we
          prepared for the blessings that God has in reserve for his
          children? Stop, think, consider, look around us! How is it? Are
          not the sordid things of this life before our eyes, and have they
          not thrown a mist before them so that we can not see? Are we not
          of the earth, and still earthy? Certainly we are of the earth and
          still earthy. What do we know of heavenly things? It is very true
          we have the Bible; but when we come to our elders, men of limited
          education and moderate reading, they are able to teach the whole
          Christian world theology. Take them from the anvil, from the
          plow, from the carpenter's bench, or from any occupation, if they
          possess good common ability and the spirit of our holy religion
          that God has revealed in these latter days, they understand more
          of the Bible and the building up of the Kingdom of God than all
          the world besides that are destitute of the priesthood of the Son
          of God. And yet what do we know? Comparatively we have hardly
          learned the first lesson.
          Could our brethren stay in Jackson County, Missouri? No, no. Why?
          They had no learned "a" concerning Zion; and we have been
          traveling now forty-two years, and have we learned our a, b, c?
          "Oh," say a good many, "I think we have." Have we learned our a b
          ab? Have we got as far as b a k e r, baker? Have we got through
          our first speller? Have we learned multiplication? Do we
          understand anything with regard to the building up of the
          kingdom? I will say, scarcely. Have we seen it as a people? How
          long shall we travel, how long shall we live, how long shall God
          wait for us to sanctify ourselves and become one in the Lord, in
          our actions and in our ways for the building up of the kingdom of
          God, that he can bless us? He defends us, it is very true, and
          fights our battles. When we were driven from Missouri and had to
          leave the State, I recollect very well, Gov. Boggs said, "You
          must leave;" Gen. Clark said, "You must leave;" the mob said,
          "You must leave," and we had to leave. And after we had signed
          away our property, I'd see a widow send up her little boy to
          brother Such-a-one, "Will you let me go to your timber land and
          get a load of wood for my mother?" "Tell your mother that I have
          got no more timber than I shall want, I do not think I can spare
          her a load of wood." I recollect very well of telling the
          Latter-day Saints, there and then, "I hope to God that we never
          will have the privilege of stopping and making ourselves rich
          while we grind the face of the poor; but let us be driven from
          State to State until we can take what we have got and dispose of
          it according to the dictation of the spirit of revelation from
          the Lord. Said I, "You will not stay here;" but long faces would
          come down, you know, with a gentle, mild scowl, "I can't spare
          you a load of wood." Excuse me. When are the Latter-day Saints
          going to be prepared to receive the kingdom? Are we now? Not at
          all! We are prepared for some things, and we receive just as fast
          as we prepare ourselves. Well, what can we do, what more can we
          do? We can do just what we please to do. It is in our power to do
          just what we please to do with regard to sanctifying ourselves
          before the Lord, and preparing ourselves to build up his kingdom:
          Have we not the liberty to build this Temple here? We have,
          although earth and hell are opposed to it, and arrayed against
          it. Have we not the privilege of preaching the Gospel to the
          nations? We have. Have we not the privilege of uniting our faith
          and our efforts for the benefit of the whole community? Yes, we
          Now come down, for example, to our present circumstances and
          condition. Year after year, I labored with our merchants to unite
          their efforts together to supply the wants of the people without
          taking from them everything they had got; and when I assembled
          these merchants some years before we entered into our present
          co-operative institution in this mercantile trade, said I, "Will
          you unite your efforts and your means, and start a business here
          that we can put goods into the hands of the people that we will
          not take their last sixpence? Have a calico dress at forty cents
          a yard when it should be only eighteen, twenty or twenty-two, and
          so on and so forth." After a long conference one of the gentlemen
          present got up, walked the room back and forward, and finally
          said, "President Young, if you will furnish the money we will do
          as you say," as much as to say, "It is none of your business what
          we do with the means that we have." I dropped the conversation
          and said to myself. "Well then, gull the people, take what they
          have got."
          You recollect a man here in the time of the Buchanan war by the
          name of A. B. Miller. He was a merchant here for Russell and
          Majors. Our people were not merchandising much then. Well, the
          merchants met together and wanted to put up their goods to a
          certain notch, a dollar a pound for sugar, for instance. This A.
          B. Miller--a gambler, though there were a great many good things
          about him, he just turned in and damned them. Says he,
          "Gentlemen, to turn in and cut the throats of these 'Mormons,'
          and take what they have got, we might do, but for being so damned
          mean as to ask a dollar a pound for sugar, I will not do it."
          Now then, is this co-operative institution one step towards
          bringing the people to a union? Yes, but it is a very small one,
          and there is danger of it growing into a condition that will
          cease to be one step in the right direction. Let men say, "Here
          is what God has given me, do what you please with it," and we
          shall be in the path of progress. But how is it now? "Brother,
          have you paid any tithing? You have made fifty thousand, ten
          thousand, a hundred thousand, one thousand or five hundred
          dollars as the case may be, have you paid any tithing?" "Well, no
          I have not yet, but I think perhaps, I will by and by;" and this
          is said with stammering tongue, faltering voice, and covetous
          heart. Who gave you your money and possessions? Who owns this
          earth? Does the Devil? No, he does not, he pretended to own it
          when the Savior was here, and promised it all to him if he would
          fall down and worship him; but he did not own a foot of land, he
          only had possession of it. He was an intruder, and is still: this
          earth belongs to him that framed and organized it, and it is
          expressly for his glory and the possession of those who love and
          serve him and keep his commandments; but the enemy has possession
          of it.
          Now then, a few other items, brethren and sisters. Can you do
          anything for the poor? "Well I do not know, but I can give you
          fifty cents to gather the poor." "Brother, can you pay that debt?
          You recollect you borrowed some money of a widow woman in
          England. Do you recollect you borrowed a little money of such a
          brother? Can you pay that?" "Well yes, I am going to." You heard
          what Brother Carrington said about it, what fellowship does the
          Lord Almighty have for such men? I think not the least. What
          fellowship do angels have for such men? I should think not much.
          What fellowship do I have for them? Not one particle. What ought
          to be done with them? I will answer the question--they ought to
          be disfellowshipped by the Saints: they are not fellowshipped in
          the heavens, and they ought not to be here.
          "Well, now then, Brother Brigham, what are you at, what do you
          want?" I want you to do just that which will displease the
          enemies of the kingdom of God, and that which will please the
          Lord Almighty and the heavenly host to perfection. What is that?
          Do as you are counseled to do by the spirit of revelation from
          the Lord. What is the cry against us? "Brigham Young has too much
          influence! All the people hearken to Brigham Young! All these
          poor deluded Latter-day Saints take his counsel!" I wish it was
          so. If this were the fact you would see Zion prosper upon the
          hills and upon the plains, in the valleys and in the kanyons, and
          upon the mountains. Go to with your might, seek unto the Lord
          your God until you have the revelations of the Lord Jesus christ
          upon you, until your minds are open, and the visions of heaven
          are plain to you. Then follow the dictations of the spirit, and
          watch Brother Brigham, and see if he counsels you wrong. I hope
          to see the time when I can say to the Latter-day Saints, if I
          preside over them, go and do this or that, and not ask a sixpence
          of this man or a dollar from that, or a hundred dollars from
          another. "Here is what I have, it is the Lord's. He has given me
          all that I possess, it is only committed to my charge to see what
          I will do with it. The heavens are his, the earth is his; the
          gold and silver are his, the wheat and fine flour are his, the
          wine and the oil are his; the cattle upon a thousand hills are
          his. I am his, I am his servants, let the Lord say what he wants.
          Here I am, with all thou hast given me." How displeasing this is
          to the devil is it not? I can not help it, this is the true track
          and path for the Latter-day Saints to walk in. Walk up, O ye
          Latter-day Saints, and wake up! Come to the Lord, forsake your
          covetousness, your back-slidings, forsake the spirit of the
          world, and return to the Lord with full purpose of heart until
          you get the spirit of Christ within you, that you, like others,
          can cry, "Abba Father, the Lord he is God and I am his servant."
          Do you think it would be difficult then for us to accomplish
          anything we undertook? No. Very true the enemy, this potent foe
          that we have to contend with, we know but little about him, very
          little; but he is watching every avenue of the heart, rapping at
          every door and every window, and if there is a crevice between
          the clapboards, through the roof, or the brick or adobie wall, he
          throws a dart into the feelings of each and every individual.
          "Take care, think for yourselves, judge for yourselves; do not be
          led astray, do not you wander off after these deluded people, and
          their delusion. Be careful, there is danger in believing in the
          Lord, there is danger in being a Saint; there is great danger in
          you yielding your judgment in another man." Oh, what a pity!
          Where do you get your judgment? Where did it come from? What is
          your judgment? I tell you that the judgment of the world now is
          pretty much for all to do just as they please if they possibly
          can, to the injury of their neighbors, for their own
          Can I not use my judgment in doing well just as much as in doing
          evil? Am I not just as independent in performing a deed of
          charity as a deed of cruelty? I contend that I am, what do you
          say? Have I not got my liberty just as much, and exercise it just
          as freely, in feeding the poor and clothing the naked as I have
          in turning them out of doors, or in lifting myself up against God
          and his anointed? Has a man got to apostatize from this kingdom,
          from the faith of Christ, to be independent? Am I not as
          independent in believing in the Lord Jesus Christ as I am in
          denying him? Am I not as independent in believing the Gospel as I
          am in believing in the whisperings and mutterings of these
          spirits that are floating through the air, rapping at everybody's
          door, sometimes tearing the clothes off their beds, rapping,
          thundering and telling this, that and the other? You hearken to
          that still small voice that whispers eternal truth, that opens
          the visions of eternity to you that you can discern, understand
          and follow, and the foul spirits that throng the air, and that
          fill our houses if we let them in, will not have power over you.
          Be just as independent as a God to do good. Love mercy, eschew
          evil, be a savior to yourselves and to your families, and to your
          fellow beings just as much as you possibly can, and go on with
          your independence and do not yield yourselves servants to obey an
          evil principle or an evil being.
          God bless you. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 /
          Wilford Woodruff, April 6, 1872
                           Wilford Woodruff, April 6, 1872
                          DISCOURSE BY ELDER WILFORD WOODRUFF,
           Delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, April 6, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          Through the mercy and loving kindness of our Father in the
          heavens we are again permitted to meet in a general conference of
          the Church of Jesus christ of Latter-day Saints. Forty-two years
          ago this day this church was organized with six members, by a
          prophet of the living God, raised up in these last days by the
          administration of angels from God, and ordained unto all the keys
          and powers of the Melchizedek priesthood and apostleship, and of
          the kingdom of God on the earth. According to the best knowledge
          we have, 1842 years ago to-day, the Lord Jesus was crucified on
          Mount Calvary for the sins of the world. The 6th day of April is
          a very important day in many respects. It has certainly been very
          interesting to the Latter-day Saints to watch the history and
          progress of this Church and kingdom during the last forty-two
          years. This is one of the most important generations that men, or
          God, or angels have ever seen on the earth: it is a dispensation
          and generation when the whole flood of prophecy and revelation
          and vision given through inspired men for the last six thousand
          years is to have its fulfillment, and especially in relation to
          the establishment of the great kingdom and Zion of God on the
          earth. Joseph Smith was one of the greatest prophets God ever
          raised up on the earth, and the Lord has had his eye upon him
          from the foundation of the world. Any man who has ever read the
          book of Isaiah, which we frequently have quoted to us, can see
          that he, with other prophets, had his eye upon the latter-day
          Zion of God. He says in one place, "Sing O heavens, rejoice O
          earth, break forth into singing, O ye mountains, for the Lord
          hath comforted his people, he will have mercy upon his afflicted.
          But Zion said: The Lord hath forsaken me, and my Lord hath
          forgotten me," "Ah," says the Lord, "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."
          The Lord never created this world at random; he has never done
          any of his work at random. The earth was created for certain
          purposes; and one of these purposes was its final redemption, and
          the establishment of his government and kingdom upon it in the
          latter days, to prepare it for the reign of the Lord Jesus
          Christ, whose right it is to reign. That set time has come, that
          dispensation is before us, we are living in the midst of it. It
          is before the Latter-day Saints, it is before the world; whether
          or not the people have more faith in the promises of God now than
          they had in the days of Noah makes no difference, the unbelief of
          men will not make the truth of God without effect. The great and
          mighty events that the Lord Almighty has decreed from before the
          foundation of the world, to be performed in the latter days are
          resting upon us, and they will follow each other in quick
          succession, whether men believe or not, for no prophecy of
          Scripture is of any private interpretation, but holy men of God
          spake as they were moved upon by the Holy Ghost, and what they
          said will come to pass; though the heaven and the earth pass away
          not one jot or title of the word of the Lord will go unfulfilled.
          Some of us have lived in and been intimately acquainted with this
          church for the last forty years, a very few more than that, and
          some less; but where is the Latter-day Saint or any other person
          who has ever seen this church or kingdom go backward? No matter
          what position we were in, whether exterminated by the order of
          Governor Boggs of Missouri, or whether we lay, sick and
          afflicted, on the muddy banks of the Missouri river; whether it
          was Zion's Camp going up for her redemption; whether it was the
          pioneers coming to these mountains, making the roads, building
          the bridges, killing the snakes and opening the way for the
          gathering of the people, no matter what our circumstances may
          have been, this kingdom has been onward and upward all the day
          long until the present hour. Will it ever go backward? No, it
          will not. This Zion of the Lord, in all its beauty, power and
          glory is engraven upon the hands of Almighty God, and it is
          before his face continually; his decrees are set and no man can
          turn them aside.
          There never was a dispensation on the earth when prophets and
          apostles, the inspiration, revelation and power of God, the holy
          priesthood and the keys of the kingdom were needed more than they
          are in this generation. There never has been a dispensation when
          the friends of God and righteousness among the children of men
          needed more faith in the promises and prophecies than they do
          to-day; and there certainly never has been a generation of people
          on the earth that has had a greater work to perform than the
          inhabitants of the earth in the later days. That is one reason
          why this church and kingdom has progressed from its commencement
          until to-day, in the midst of all the opposition, oppression and
          warfare which have been waged against it by men inspired by the
          evil one. If this had not been the dispensation of the fulness of
          times--the dispensation in which God has declared that he will
          establish his kingdom on the earth never more to be thrown down,
          the inhabitants of the earth would have been enabled to overcome
          the kingdom and Zion of God in this as well as in any former
          dispensation. But the set time has come to favor Zion, and the
          Lord Almighty has decreed in the heavens that every weapon formed
          against her shall be broken. And if we take the history of any
          man, from the days Joseph Smith received the plates from the hill
          Cumorah, and translated the Book of Mormon by the Urim and
          Thummim, until to-day, whoever has raised his hand against this
          work has felt the chastening hand of Almighty God upon him; and I
          am at the defiance of the world to show me a president, governor,
          judge, ruler, priest or anybody else on the earth who has taken a
          stand against this kingdom who is an exception, and you may
          search their whole history. We have outlived several generations
          of our persecutors. Where are the men who tarred and feathered
          Joseph Smith in Portage County, Ohio? Where are the men who drove
          this people from Kirtland? Where are the men who drove the Church
          and kingdom from Jackson County, Missouri? Where are the men who
          undertook to kidnap the prophet while in Illinois? Where are they
          who drove the Latter-day Saints from Illinois into these
          mountains? Trace their whole history and see for yourselves. The
          fact is many of them are in their graves, awaiting their final
          judgment. And in the whole history of this people and their
          remarkable preservation, the invisible hand of God is as plainly
          to be seen as it has been in the history of the Jews from the
          days of Christ until now; and it will continue until this scene
          is wound up. 
          We are led by men who are filled with inspiration. Joseph Smith
          was a man of God, through the loins of the ancient Joseph who,
          through the wisdom which God gave him, redeemed his father's
          house after having been sold by his brethren into Egypt. All the
          blessings that old father Jacob pronounced upon Joseph and upon
          the sons of Ephraim, his son and grandsons have rested upon them
          until this day. Joseph Smith was through that lineage. In his
          youth he was inspired of God, and was administered to by angels.
          Under their guidance and counsel he laid the foundation of this
          work, and lived long enough to receive all the keys necessary for
          bearing off this dispensation. He lived long enough to have these
          individuals administer unto him--John the Baptist, Peter, James
          and John the Apostles, Elisba and Elijah, who held the keys of
          turning the hearts of the fathers to the children and the hearts
          of the children to the fathers; and Moroni, who held the keys of
          the stick of Joseph in the hands of Ephraim to come forth in the
          latter day, administered in person to Joseph Smith, and gave him
          these records and instructed him in the things of God from time
          to time until he was qualified and prepared to lay the foundation
          of this work. The Prophet Joseph lived to see the Church
          organized with apostles and prophets, patriarchs, pastors,
          teachers, helps, governments, and all the gifts and graces of the
          spirit of God; to give the Twelve Apostles their endowments and
          to seal upon their heads all the authority and power that were
          necessary to enable them to fulfil their missions. Why did the
          Lord take him away? He laid down his life, and sealed his
          testimony with his blood that it might be in force upon the heads
          of this generation, and that he might be crowned with crowns of
          glory, immortality and eternal life; that he might go to the
          other side of the vail, and there organize the Church and kingdom
          in this last dispensation. He and his two brothers were taken
          away into the spirit world, and they are at work there, while
          Brigham Young and the quorum of the Twelve were preserved on the
          earth for a special purpose in the hands of God. These things are
          true, and the hand of the Lord has been over Brigham Young,
          although now he is under bonds and a prisoner, and has his
          privileges curtailed for the world of God and the testimony of
          Jesus. Yet in the midst of all this he is calm and composed
          before the Lord, and has his mind open to the things of God. He
          still lives in the midst of this people and will live as long as
          the Lord wishes him to remain in the flesh to guide the affairs
          of Zion.
          I will say to the Later-day Saints that we have been more blessed
          in this land than has any other dispensation or generation of
          men. The Lord has been at work for the last three hundred years
          preparing this land, with a government and constitution which
          would guarantee equal rights and privileges to the inhabitants
          thereof, in the midst of which he could establish his kingdom.
          The kingdom is established, the work of god is manifest in the
          earth, the Saints have come up here into the valleys of the
          mountains, and they are erecting the house of God in the tops
          thereof, for the nations to flow unto. A standard of truth has
          been lifted up to the people, and from the commencement of this
          work the Latter-day Saints have been fulfilling that flood of
          revelation and prophecy which was given formerly concerning this
          great work in the last days. I rejoice in this, and also because
          we have every reason to expect a continuation of these blessings
          unto Zion. We have always had a vail over us, we have had to walk
          by faith all the day long until the present time: this is the
          decree of God. When we were driven from Jackson County, Clay
          County, Caldwell county, Kirtland, and finally from Nauvoo into
          these mountains, we did not see and understand what lay before
          us: there was a vail over our faces, in a measure. It has been
          the same with the people of God in all ages. At that time we
          could not see this tabernacle, and the five hundred miles of
          villages, towns, cities, gardens, orchards, fields, or the desert
          blossoming as the rose as we see them to-day. We came here and
          found a barren desert: we were led hither by inspiration, by a
          law-giver, by a man of God; the Lord was with him, he was with
          the pioneers. If we had not come here we could not have fulfilled
          the prophecies which the prophets have left on record in the
          stick of Judah as well as in the stick of Ephraim--the Bible and
          the Book of Mormon. We have done that, and we can look back
          twenty-four years and see the change that has been effected since
          our arrival; but who can see the change that will be effected in
          the next twenty-four years? No man can see it unless the vision
          of his mind is opened by the power of God. The Lord told Joseph
          Smith to lay the foundation of this work; he told him that the
          day had come when the harvest was ready, and to thrust in the
          sickle and reap; and every man who would do so was called of God
          and had this privilege.
          The Lord has sent forth the Gospel, and it is offered to the
          children of men as it was in ancient days; men are required to
          have faith in Jesus Christ, repent of their sins, and to be
          baptized for the remission of them, and the promise is that they
          shall receive the Holy Ghost, which shall teach them the things
          of God, bring things past to their remembrance, and show them
          things to come.
          What principle has sustained the Elders of Israel for the last
          forty years in their travels? They have gone forth without purse
          or scrip, preached without money or price; they have swam rivers,
          waded swamps, and traveled hundreds of thousands of miles on foot
          to bear record of this work to the nations of the earth. What has
          sustained them? It has been this power of God, this Holy Ghost,
          the spirit of inspiration from the God of Israel that has been
          given to his friends on the earth in these latter days. The blood
          of Israel has flowed in the veins of the children of men, mixed
          among the Gentile nations, and when they have heard the sound of
          the Gospel of Christ it has been like vivid lightning to them; it
          has opened their understandings, enlarged their minds, and
          enabled them to see the things of God. They have been born of the
          Spirit, and then they could behold the kingdom of God; they have
          been baptized in water and had hands laid upon them for the
          reception of the Holy Ghost, and they have received that Holy
          Ghost among every Gentile nation under heaven wherever the Gospel
          has been permitted to be preached; and here they are to-day, from
          all those nations, gathered in the valleys of the mountains. And
          this is but the beginning; it is like a mustard seed, it is very
          small; but the little one is to become a thousand, and the small
          one a strong nation. The Lord will hasten it in his own time.
          Zion shall be called a "City sought out." The Lord is watching
          over us.
          I wish to say to the Latter-day Saints, we must not forget our
          position, nor the blessings that we hope for. All that we expect,
          we have got to inquire of the Lord for. Some of our brethren, as
          has been said here, have suffered a little through the spirit of
          bigotry and persecution that is in the world. I wonder many times
          there is not a great deal more of it. The Lord Almighty is going
          to make a short work in the earth; lest no flesh should be saved
          he will cut his work short in righteousness. The Lord is putting
          his hook into the jaws of the nations. He holds Great Babylon in
          his hands as well as Zion. He will control the children of men;
          and, as the Lord God lives, if the Latter-day Saints do their
          duty--live their religion and keep their covenants, Zion will
          arise, put on her beautiful garments, be clothed with the glory
          of God, have power in the earth, and the law will go forth from
          Zion and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. Then let our
          prayers ascend into the ears of the Lord God of Sabbaoth, for he
          will hear them, that the wisdom of the wise may perish and the
          understanding of the prudent be hid. Our weapons are faith,
          prayer, and confidence in God, for he is our friend if we have
          any, and we are his if he has any on the face of the earth. The
          Lord will work with us, and we should work with him; therefore,
          brethren, let us live by faith, walk by faith, overcome by faith,
          so that we may enjoy the Holy Spirit to guide and direct us. All
          the institutions pertaining to the work of God in these latter
          days are going to progress, Zion is bound to arise, and to arrive
          at that position in our great future that he Prophets have seen
          by prophecy and revelation.
          I want to say a few words to the sisters, who have been referred
          to this morning--the Female Relief Societies. Our mothers,
          sisters, wives and daughters occupy a very important position in
          this generation, far more so than they realize or understand. You
          are raising up your sons and daughters as plants of renown in the
          house of Israel in these latter-days. Upon the shoulders of you
          mothers rests, in a great measure, the responsibility of
          correctly developing the mental and moral powers of the rising
          generation, whether in infancy, childhood, or still riper years.
          Your husbands--the fathers of your children, are messengers to
          the nations of the earth, or they are engaged in business, and
          can not be at home to attend to the children. No mother in Israel
          should let a day pass over her head without teaching her children
          to pray. You should pray yourselves, and teach your children to
          do the same, and you should bring them up in this way, that when
          you have passed away and they take your places in bearing off the
          great work of God, they may have principles instilled into their
          minds that will sustain them in time and in eternity. I have
          often said it is the mother who forms the mind of the child. Take
          men anywhere, at sea, sinking with their ship, dying in battle,
          lying down in death almost under any circumstances, and the last
          thing they think of, the last word they say, is "mother." Such is
          the influence of woman. Our children should not be neglected;
          they should receive a proper education in both spiritual and
          temporal things. That is the best legacy any parents can leave to
          their children. We should teach them to pray, and instil into
          their minds while young every correct principle. Ninety-nine out
          of every hundred children who are taught by their parents the
          principles of honesty and integrity, truth and virtue, will
          observe them through life. Such principles will exalt any people
          or nation who make them the rule of their conduct. Show me a
          mother who prays, who has passed through the trials of life by
          prayer, who has trusted in the Lord God of Israel in her trials
          and difficulties, and her children will follow in the same path.
          These things will not forsake them when they come to at in the
          kingdom of God.
          I want to say to our mothers in Israel, your children are
          approaching a very important day and age of the world. In a few
          more years their parents will pass away. We will go where our
          brethren have gone--to the other side of the vail. Our children
          will remain and will possess this kingdom when God's judgments
          await the nations of the earth, when war, calamity, sword, fire,
          famine, pestilence and earthquake will stalk abroad and distress
          the people. Our children should be prepared to build up the
          kingdom of God. Then qualify them in the days of childhood for
          the great duties they will be called upon to perform; and that
          God may enable us to do so is my prayer for Christ' sake. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 / George
          Albert Smith, April 7, 1872
                         George Albert Smith, April 7, 1872
                        REMARKS BY PRESIDENT GEORGE A. SMITH,
                  Delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                           Sunday Morning, April 7, 1872.
                             (Report by David W. Evans.)
          We are again assembled this morning to continue the duties and
          services of our Conference, and I am requested by President Young
          to state that he is in the enjoyment of comfortable health and in
          excellent spirits. He regrets very much the circumstances which
          render it inexpedient for him to meet with you this morning, and
          hopes the time may soon come when he will again enjoy that
          privilege, also the privilege of bearing testimony to the
          glorious work of the last days, in the public congregation. He
          desires and appreciates the prayers and faith of the Saints; he
          thinks that it is quite proper that any man before he is
          thoroughly qualified to rule shall learn to be ruled--that he
          shall learn to obey before he learns to command. All these
          lessons in their time and in their season are proper for us to
          When we realize the malignity of the spirit of persecution which
          is aimed at the Latter-day Saints in these valleys, we need not
          wonder that we have to contend with vexatious lawsuits and with
          illegal and unjustifiable prosecutions, for the influence of the
          pulpit and the press when controlled by the spirit of lying is
          very great for evil, but God is greater--his power is more
          omnipotent; and although thousands of prophets, priests and wise
          men in the earth have been compelled to lay down their lives for
          the cause of Zion, and for the sake of the principles of the
          gospel of peace, and in doing so they have acquired honors that
          could not be attained in any other way; their reward is certain,
          eternal and sure.
          I wish to call the attention of the elders who have been in years
          past, on missions, to one important item of duty. It is well
          known that our emigration annually brings some thousands of
          persons among whom our missionaries have labored and with whom
          they are acquainted, and among whom are many who still look to
          them for fatherly advice and encouragement, but many of the
          elders who return immediately forget that they have been
          missionaries. When they reach home they perhaps find their
          affairs a little deranged, business having stopped in their
          absence, money making or procuring the means of living having
          gone rather behind hand, they drop right into a groove as it were
          to catch up, and they forget their duties, and the people whom
          they have been acquainted with and who have treated them with
          kindness and generosity are also frequently forgotten and
          neglected. The emigrants come into these valleys and fall perhaps
          under influences that are wrong and wicked, for men inspired with
          a spirit of hostility to the work of God will take more pains to
          poison their minds than those who feel all right do to give them
          correct information. I wish to say to all such elders and to all
          the brethren, that when they get home their mission is not
          consummated, and that when new comers arrive we should take pains
          to look after their welfare, give them counsel and instruction,
          aid and comfort, and realize that we are missionaries all our
          lives, and that it is our duty to instruct such in the things of
          the kingdom, to encourage them and set before them principles of
          intelligence, such as will be for their benefit.
          I wish further to say to the Elders and to the brethren who have
          emigrated, that they should remember their friends they visited
          before they came here, or when they were on missions in the old
          world. Remember the poor family that went without their
          provision, perhaps, to give you a feast, or the family that to
          make you warm and comfortable gave up their beds to you,
          themselves enduring cold, discomfort and inconvenience to do so;
          or the family that opened their doors to shelter you from the
          storm when their neighbors hooted and scouted them, as it were,
          for entertaining a stranger. You missionaries in your experience
          have all met with such families, and many of them are there yet
          without the means to get here. Perhaps they have said to you,
          "Will you help me when you get home?" and you may have given them
          a look of encouragement, a half promise, or expressed a hope that
          you might be able to do so. Have you forgotten it? Perhaps a
          little effort on your part and on the part of your neighbors
          might bring these families to this country and place them in a
          position to acquire lots, farms, and homes of their own, redeem
          them from thraldom and bondage worse than slavery, and place them
          in a position of independence on their own soil, enjoy the fruits
          of their own labors and help to build up and develop the rising,
          spreading glory of Zion.
          I have heard there is an Elder who, when on a mission borrowed
          some money of a widow that had not means enough to get away, but
          had a little she could spare until she could acquire enough to
          bring her family here; and that Elder, peradventure, has
          forgotten to pay it. I have heard there is such an Elder in Utah.
          Shame on him if there is! Under such circumstances we should not
          only pay punctually and faithfully what we owe, with good and
          reasonable interest, but all of us European missionaries should
          be prepared to do something handsome annually to help those from
          the bondage and thraldom in which we found them, and where they
          must remain until means are obtained to deliver them. I am
          calling now for the donation to the Perpetual Emigration Fund. A
          hundred thousand Latter-day Saints in Utah, and can we not help a
          few thousand that yet remain in the old missions, and bring them
          here? "Well," some may say, "they will apostatize if they come."
          That is all right, they must have the privilege. I understand
          that we have brought some men here with the Fund that have
          apostatized, betrayed the Saints and done all in their power to
          stain their garments in the blood of the prophets; but that is
          not our fault, it is theirs. We should gather the Saints and they
          themselves are responsible for the use they make of the blessings
          which God bestows upon them, even if they come through our hands
          and exertions. Look at the tens of thousands of families now in
          Utah in comfortable circumstances with houses, farms, wagons,
          cattle and horses of their own, many of them with carriages, and
          these families taken by the contributions of the Latter-day
          Saints from the most abject servitude and poverty from the bowels
          of the earth, from within the walls of factories, where but for
          this fund they must have remained for their lives; but now they
          are in comparative independence and enjoying the blessings of
          After President Young returned from St. George for the purpose of
          voluntarily placing himself in the custody of United States
          Officers, as is well known, I received a letter from an eminent
          gentleman in the State of Massachusetts, who said that the
          prosecution against him could be nothing more nor less than a
          put-up job, and that the people of the country understood it as
          such; "and the fact is," said he, "Brigham Young has done more
          for the benefit of large bodies of people than any other living
          man on the earth." That is true. By the inspiration of Almighty
          God through his servant Brigham Young, this Fund was organized,
          and he has been the President of it, and through his energy and
          enterprise and the aid of the Latter-day Saints--his friends--he
          has gathered tens of thousands that could never have owned a rod
          of ground or a house as long as they lived, but would have been
          at the mercy of employers who looked upon them only as a portion
          of their property, and the question with them has been how much
          of this man's labor can I get for the smallest pittance; but
          through the exertions and counsels of President Young and his
          brethren they have been delivered from this bondage and placed in
          comparative independence. I say God bless such a man,
          (Congregation said Amen) and God bless every man and every woman
          who will contribute to carry out this glorious purpose.
          I am very anxious to wake up the Elders to labor at home, to keep
          alive in the hearts of the Saints the spirit of truth. While all
          those who so desire are free to apostatize, it should not be for
          the want of proper information, care and instruction, or in
          consequence of the neglect of the Elders to do their duty. I
          exhort the Latter-day Saints to unite in carrying on the work of
          gathering. A few years ago we thought that we would gather them
          all. When we had raised what means we could, and had expended it,
          we found the Elders were baptizing about as fast as we were
          bringing the Saints away. That is all right. Let us get the old
          and faithful Latter-day Saints away, and keep baptizing all that
          desire to be baptized. In the Scandinavian Mission the number of
          baptisms keep up, and some years a little more than keep up, with
          the emigration. There are families from year to year that can be
          brought away by a little assistance; they have part means, and
          only need a little more to emigrate. I do think that the history
          of the Perpetual Emigration Fund is a wonderful one. The
          Latter-day Saints in Utah sent from here two hundred wagons one
          year, three hundred another year, four hundred the next, and for
          two years five hundred wagons each year, each wagon having four
          yoke of oxen, or their equivalent in mules and horses, and bore
          all the expenses consequent upon bringing people across the
          Plains, bringing from one to four thousand persons a season. This
          is certainly creditable, and it has been done through the
          influence of Brigham Young and the united efforts of a
          free-hearted and noble people. We have got a railroad now and do
          not have to send the wagons; the business assumes another shape.
          The emigration is brought here with less labor and in less time,
          but with more outlay.
          I have now laid before you my views on the emigration of the poor
          Saints from abroad. Consider upon and think about them. Make your
          calculations, and feel in your pockets and contribute to help on
          the work, and carry with you to all the settlements of the Saints
          a spirit that shall bring home to Zion the brethren and sisters
          from abroad. In that way the work can continue. May God bless all
          who aid in this glorious work is my prayer in the name of Jesus.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 /
          Brigham Young, April 28, 1872
                            Brigham Young, April 28, 1872
                         REMARKS BY PRESIDENT BRIGHAM YOUNG,
                  Delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                           Sunday Morning, April 28, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          A word to the Latter-day Saints. Good morning. (Congregation
          responded, "Good morning.") How do you do? (Congregation replied,
          "Very well.") How is your faith this morning? ("Strong in the
          Lord," was the response.) How do you think I look after my long
          confinement? (Congregation replied, "First rate.") I do not rise
          expecting to preach a discourse or sermon, or to lengthen out
          remarks. I spoke a few minutes yesterday in the school, but I
          found that it exhausted me very soon. I will say a few words to
          you. The Gospel of the Son of God is most precious. My faith is
          not weakened in the Gospel in the least. I will answer a few of
          the questions that probably many would like to ask of me. Many
          would like to know how I have felt the past winter, and so much
          of the spring as is now past. I have enjoyed myself exceedingly
          well. I have been blessed with an opportunity to rest; and you
          who are acquainted with me and my public speaking can discern at
          once, if you listen closely to my voice, it is weak to what it
          used to be, and I required rest. I feel well in body and better
          in mind. I have no complaint to make, no fault to find, no
          reflections to cast, for all that has been done has been directed
          and overruled by the wisdom of Him who knows all things.
          As to my treatment through the winter, it has been very
          agreeable, very kind. My associate, my companion in tribulation,
          I will say, has acted the gentleman as much as any man could. I
          have not one word, one lisp or beat of the heart to complain of
          him. He has been full of kindness, thoughtful, never intruding,
          always ready to hearken and, I think, in the future, will be
          perfectly willing to take the counsel of his prisoner. So much
          for Captain Isaac Evans. I will say this to you, ladies and
          gentlemen, you who profess to understand true etiquette, I have
          not seen a gentleman in my acquaintance that possesses more of
          the real spirit of gentility, caution and of true etiquette than
          Captain Evans. He has passed the window where I have lodged
          through the winter every morning to his breakfast and every
          afternoon; he has walked in the street in front of my office and
          on the opposite side, and he has never yet been seen gazing and
          looking at my buildings, or to see who was at the window, or even
          look at my window. He has never looked into the second room in my
          office unless invited there--never. Can you say that for other
          gentlemen? They are very scarce; there are very few of them.
          I have no reflections to cast upon these courts. How much power,
          ability or opportunity would I have to possess, do you think, if
          all were combined, to disgrace them as they have disgraced
          themselves? I have neither the power nor the ability,
          consequently I have nothing to say with regard to their conduct.
          It is before the world; it is before the Heavens continually. The
          Lord has known the thoughts of the hearts of the children of men,
          and he has overruled all for his glory, and for the benefit of
          those who believe and obey the truth in Christ. I will say this:
          when they started out with a writ for your humble servant, and I
          had news of it before it was served, I told my brethren that all
          their efforts would avail them nothing, and that they would end
          in a grand fizzle. Do you think we have come to it? I think we
          Have you nothing to say, brother Brigham concerning the Supreme
          Court of the United States? A few words. I am happy to learn that
          there are yet men in our government who are too high-minded, too
          pure in their thoughts and feelings to bow down to a sectarian
          prejudice, and to hearken to the whinings and complaints of
          prejudiced priests, or those who are wrapped up in the nutshell
          of sectarianism; men of honor, nobility, judgment and discretion;
          men who look at things as they are and judge according to the
          nature thereof without any discrimination as to parties or
          people. I am thankful that this fact does exist. Have they
          decided in favor of the Latter-day Saints? Yes. Why? Because the
          Latter-day Saints are on the track of truth; they are for law,
          for right, for justice, for mercy, for judgment and equity,
          consequently they are for God. Would I admire the conduct of a
          jurist on the bench who would decide for a Latter-day Saint if he
          were guilty? If he would justify a Latter-day Saint and condemn a
          Methodist? No, I would despise him in my heart. I might look upon
          him with pity, it is very true, and without malice, anger or
          bitterness, and pity him in his ignorance; but if he was a man of
          knowledge and understanding I would condemn him as quickly for
          justifying a Latter-day Saint, or one called a Latter-day Saint,
          or one called a Latter-day Saint, in evil, as I would a
          Methodist. And a man who sits as President of the United States,
          as a Governor of a State or Territory, or as a judge upon the
          bench, or a member of a legislative assembly, who would reduce
          himself to the feelings, and narrow contracted views of partyism,
          is not fit for the place. As I said before a gentleman here, I
          think it was last summer, who was stump-speeching through the
          country and proclaiming his right to the Presidency "he that most
          desires an office is the least fit for it." Perhaps I made a
          mistake in that declaration, for though on general principles it
          is true, it may not be true in every case. Some may desire an
          office for the sake of the good work that they perform, seeing
          that others have abused it. This is as much as I wish to say upon
          these subjects.
          As I shall probably desire to speak a little in the afternoon, I
          shall soon bring my remarks to a close. I will say a few words
          with regard to the Perpetual Emigration Fund. Perhaps you have
          had a good deal said to you in the course of this Conference
          concerning gathering the poor, but if you have I have not learned
          it. I have not heard of any man coming forward and putting down
          his name for a thousand or two thousand dollars. At the
          commencement of the Conference I donated two thousand dollars for
          the gathering of the poor, but I have not heard of anybody adding
          another figure to mine or placing one under it. How is it? It is
          very true we gather the Saints, and when they get here and gather
          around them the comforts of life, and become the possessors of a
          little wealth, the spirit of the world enters into a few of them
          to that degree that it crowds out the Spirit of the Gospel. They
          forget their God and their covenants, and turn to the beggarly
          elements of the world, seek for its riches and finally leave the
          faith. But we had better gather nine that are unworthy than to
          neglect the tenth if he is worthy. If they come here, apostatize
          and turn our enemies, they are in the hands of God, and what they
          do will be to them everlasting life or everlasting condemnation.
          For the good, for the wise, or for the froward and the ungodly,
          it is our duty to do all we can. It is our duty to preach the
          Gospel to the nations of the earth, to gather up the pure in
          heart, and to lend a helping hand to the poor and needy; to
          instruct, guide and direct them, and when they are gathered
          together to teach them how to live, how to serve their God, how
          to gather around them the comforts of life, and glorify their
          Father in heaven in the enjoyment of the same.
          When I cast my eyes upon the inhabitants of the earth and see the
          weakness, inability, the shortsightedness, and I may say, the
          height of folly in the hearts of the kings, rulers, and the
          great, and those who should be wise and good an noble; when I see
          them grovelling in the dust; longing, craving, desiring,
          contending for the things of this life, I think, O foolish men,
          to set your hearts on the things of this life! To-day they are
          seeking after the honors and glories of the world, and by the
          time the sun is hidden by the western mountains the breath is
          gone out of their nostrils, they sink to their mother earth.
          Where are their riches then? Gone for ever. As Job says, "Naked I
          came into the world." Destitute and forlorn, they have to travel
          a path that is untried and unknown to them, and wend their way
          into the spirit world. They know not where they are going nor for
          what. The designs of the Creator are hidden from their eyes;
          darkness, ignorance, mourning and groaning take hold of them and
          they pass into eternity. And this is the end of them concerning
          this life as far as they know. A man or a woman who places the
          wealth of this world and the things of time in the scales against
          the things of God and the wisdom of eternity, has no eyes to see,
          no ears to hear, no heart to understand. What are riches for? For
          blessings, to do good. Then let us dispense that which the Lord
          gives us to the best possible use for the building up of his
          kingdom, for the promotion of the truth on the earth, that we may
          see and enjoy the blessings of the Zion of God here upon this
          earth. I look around among the world of mankind and see them
          grabbing, scrambling, contending, and every one seeking to
          aggrandize himself, and to accomplish his own individual
          purposes, passing the community by, walking upon the heads of his
          neighbors--all are seeking, planning, contriving in their wakeful
          hours, and when asleep dreaming, "How can I get the advantage of
          my neighbor? How can I spoil him, that I may ascend the ladder of
          fame?" That is entirely a mistaken idea. You see that nobleman
          seeking the benefit of all around him, trying to bring, we will
          say, his servants, if you please, his tenants, to his knowledge,
          to like blessings that he enjoys, to dispense his wisdom and
          talents among them and to make them equal with himself. As they
          ascend and increase, so does he, and he is in the advance. All
          eyes are upon that king or that nobleman, and the feelings of
          those around him are: "God bless him! How I love him! How I
          delight in him! He seeks to bless and to fill me with joy, to
          crown my labors with success, to give me comfort, that I may
          enjoy the world as well as himself." But the man who seeks honor
          and glory at the expense of his fellow-men is not worthy of the
          society of the intelligent.
          Now, a few words to my friends here--my colleagues the lawyers,
          and others. I gave a little counsel here, I think it is a year
          ago this last sixth of April, for the people of this Territory
          and through these mountains not to go to law, but to arbitrate
          their cases. I will ask if they do not think they would have
          saved a good deal of money in their pockets if they had taken
          this counsel? And to see our streets lined with lawyers as they
          are! Why they are as thick as grogshop used to be in California.
          What is the business of a lawyer? It is the case with too many to
          keep what they have got, and to gather around them wealth, to
          heap it up, but to do as little as possible for it; to give a
          little counsel here, and a little counsel there. What for? To
          keep their victims in bondage. Say they: "Let us stick to him as
          long as he has a dollar in his pocket."
          I will tell you a story. A man was going to market, a pretty
          wicked swearing man, with his cart full of apples. He was going
          up hill, and the hindboard as the Yankees call it--the Westerners
          call it the hindgate, slipped out of his cart, and his apples
          rolled down the hill. He stopped his team and looked at the
          apples as they rolled down the hill, and said he, "I would swear
          if I could do justice to the case, but as I can not I will not
          swear a word." I will not say a word more than to class
          dishonorable lawyers with other dishonest men.
          Now what are the facts? Why this world is before us. The gold,
          silver and precious stones are in the mountains, in the rivers,
          in the plains, in the sands and in the waters, they all belong to
          this world, and you and I belong to this world. Is there enough
          to make each of us a finger ring? Certainly there is. Is there
          enough to make us a breast pin? Certainly there is. Is there
          enough to make jewelry for the ladies to set their diamonds and
          precious stones in? Certainly there is. Is there enough to make
          the silver plate, the spoons, platters, plates and knives and
          forks? There is. Is there enough to make the goblets to drink out
          of? There is. There is plenty if we want to make the wine casks
          of gold, there is plenty of it in the earth for all these
          purposes. Then what on earth are you and I quarrelling about it
          for? Go to work systematically and take it from the mountains,
          and put it to the use that we want it, without contending against
          each other, and filching the pockets of each other. The world is
          full of it. If it goes from my pocket it is still in the world,
          it still belongs to this little ball, this little speck in God's
          creation, so small that from the sun I expect you would have to
          have a telescope that would magnify millions of times almost to
          see it; and from any of the fixed stars I do not expect that it
          has ever been seen only by the celestials--mortals could not see
          this earth at that distance. And here people are contending,
          quarreling, seeking how to get the advantage of each other, and
          how to get all the wealth there is in the world; wanting to rule
          nations, wanting to be president, king or ruler. What would they
          do if they were? Most of them would make everybody around them
          miserable, that is what they would do. There are very few men on
          the earth who try to make people happy. Occasionally there have
          been emperors and monarchs who have made their people happy but
          they have been very rare. But suppose we go to work to gather up
          all that there is in the bosom and upon the surface of our mother
          earth and bring it into use, is there any lack? There is not,
          there is enough for all. Then do look at these things as they
          are, Latter-day Saints, and you who are not Latter-day Saints,
          look at things as they are. And I do hope and pray for your
          sakes, outsiders, and for the sakes of those who profess to be
          Latter-day Saints, that we shall have good peace for a time here,
          so that we can build our furnaces, open our mines, make our
          railroads, till the soil, follow our mercantile business
          uninterrupted; that we may attend to the business of beautifying
          the earth. I see around me a few of my neighbors who are
          beautifying their gardens. How beautiful! There is one here in
          the Seventh Ward--Mr. Hussey's, I never drive out but I want to
          drive by it. How much better that looks than it would be for him
          to quarrel with his neighbors! Beautify your gardens, your
          houses, your farms; beautify the city. This will make us happy,
          and produce plenty. The earth is a good earth, the elements are
          good if we will use them for our own benefit, in truth and
          righteousness. Then let us be content, and go to with our mights
          to make ourselves healthy, wealthy, and beautiful, and preserve
          ourselves in the best possible manner, and live just as long as
          we can, and do all the good we can.
          Now, brethren and sisters and friends, I have said a few words
          about lawyers; but I could pick up other classes of men just as
          bad, and we can find fault with all. Let us be honest, let us be
          upright, full of charity one toward another; and live as
          agreeably as we possibly can here on this earth that the Lord has
          given to man to cultivate and improve for his own benefit, and to
          prepare it for an everlasting inheritance. There is a great deal
          before us, and it is for us to live so that we will be able to
          perform our part well in this great work. And I say to the
          Latter-day Saints, it is for you to put forth your hands this
          season in emigrating the poor. We will receive any amount. If it
          is not more than a hundred dollars or so, we will be willing to
          receive it. Talk about this people being poor, why we will get so
          rich by and by that we will refuse to pay our taxes; we have got
          so rich now that we cannot pay our tithing. The rich do not
          pretend to pay any tithing, or but very few of them. I think I
          have mentioned one fact with regard to our merchants. A few years
          ago in the other tabernacle, I said that our merchants who lived
          on the business part of East Temple street and professed to be
          Latter-day Saints, if they were not very careful, would deny the
          faith and be damned, and it would be by the skin of their teeth
          if they ever got into heaven. How is it with the rest of us?
          About the same. No matter about this. But here is one of our
          merchants--William Jennings--about whom a great many have remarks
          to make. Well, it is no matter about his trade. I want to say to
          the rest of the merchants that he has paid a good many thousand
          dollars tithing, more than all the rest of them put together.
          That is for William Jennings. We are paying our tithing in the
          Co-operative, I would not consent to go into the business on any
          other terms only that the tithing should be paid on all we made.
          But the other merchants, if they pay tithing on what they make it
          has to come hereafter, for they have never done it yet; and I
          think the more they make the less tithing they pay. But you are
          welcome to give something to the poor; if you will help us a
          little with regard to the emigration we will be very much obliged
          to you, but you will have to trust in God for the future
          God bless you, Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 / John
          Taylor, April 7, 1872
                  Delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                           Sunday Morning, April 7, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                            TRIUMPH OF THE CAUSE OF ZION.
          We are again met, in our Annual Conference, for the purpose of
          hearing the words of life, and of being instructed in the various
          duties and responsibilities that rest upon us, and that we, as
          Latter-day Saints, may be taught principles pertaining to our
          holy faith, and be instructed in the duties devolving upon us in
          the various positions that we occupy; that by a unity of faith,
          purpose and action, we may be able to accomplish something that
          will promote truth, advance the interests of Zion and the
          establishment of the kingdom of God upon the earth.
          We are told that it is not in man to direct his steps, and we
          stand here in a peculiar position under the guidance and
          direction of the Almighty. The Lord has seen fit to reveal unto
          us the everlasting Gospel, and we have been enabled, by the grace
          of God, to appreciate that message of life which he has
          communicated unto us, and we have been gathered from the nations
          of the earth under the influences and auspices of that Gospel. We
          are gathered here for the accomplishment of certain objects
          relative both to ourselves and others, the great leading
          principle of which is--to help to fulfil the designs that existed
          in the mind of the Almighty before the world was, relative to the
          earth and humanity; and I presume that that exhortation which was
          made eighteen hundred years ago to certain Saints, would be just
          as applicable to us to-day as it was to them. They were exhorted
          to "contend earnestly for the faith once delivered to the
          Saints." That, no doubt, sounded very strange to them in that day
          and age of the world; they had had Jesus among them, he had
          preached his Gospel unto them; the light of eternal truth had
          been made manifest, and they had participated in the blessings of
          the Gospel; and yet, under these peculiar circumstances, blessed,
          as it were, with the light of revelation, with Apostles in their
          midst, with a complete church organization, with everything that
          was calculated to enlighten, instruct and lead them on in the
          path of righteousness, they were told to contend earnestly for
          that faith once delivered to the Saints.
          It seems that in the different ages of the world in the past,
          there has existed, as there does to-day, a species of
          self-righteousness, self-complacence, a reliance upon the wisdom,
          intelligence and virtue of man. In that day the Scribes and
          Pharisees, the lawyers and doctors, the great Sanhedrin, the
          pious men, thought they were the peculiar elect of God, and that
          wisdom would die with them. Jesus came among them and told them
          very many unpalatable truths; among others that they were "whited
          walls and painted sepulchres; that they appeared fair on the
          outside, but inwardly there was nothing but rottenness and dead
          men's bones." He told them that for a pretence they made long
          prayers; not that they had any reference to God at all, for God
          had very little to do with them. They did it, he told them, in
          order that "they might be heard of men." They made broad their
          philacteries, (that is a species of writing which they bound on
          all their garments,) with certain passages of Scripture. They
          made them very broad, that they might be considered extra pure,
          virtuous and holy. Jesus called these very pure, holy virtuous
          people, painted sepulchres.
          But there is something else associated with these matters very
          peculiar. Jesus taught the principles of life and salvation--the
          everlasting Gospel. He introduced men into the kingdom of God; he
          organized a pure Church, based upon correct principles, according
          to the order of God. Men were baptized into that Church; they had
          hands laid upon them for the reception of the Holy Ghost, and
          they received it. They had among them Apostles and Prophets,
          Pastors and Teachers, Evangelists and inspired men. The Church
          enjoyed among themselves the gift of tongues, visions, prophecy;
          the sick were healed, the blind received their sight, the deaf
          heard, and the lame leaped for joy; the visions of heaven were
          unfolded to their view, and they had a knowledge of many things
          pertaining to eternity; and yet, with all their light,
          intelligence and blessings, with all their Apostles, with the
          fulness of the Gospel in their midst, they were advised to
          contend earnestly for the faith once delivered to the Saints. The
          Lord has revealed to us many blessings, and I sometimes think
          that we hardly appreciate the light of truth which has been
          developed, the glory that is connected with the Gospel which has
          been restored, the light of revelation which has been
          communicated, the position that we occupy in relation to God,
          angels, our posterity and our progenitors, the hope that the
          Gospel has implanted in the bosom of every faithful Latter-day
          Saint, which blooms with immortality and eternal life; and
          sometimes, when exposed to the various trials with which we are
          encompassed, to the opprobrium and reproach frequently heaped
          upon us by ignorant and evil disposed persons, some of us,
          perhaps, think that our religion is something like that with
          which we are surrounded. We sometimes forget our prayers,
          responsibilities, duties and covenants, and we give way in many
          instances to things which have a tendency to darken the mind,
          becloud the understanding, weaken our faith, and deprive us of
          the Spirit of God. We forget the pit whence we were dug, and the
          rock from which we were hewn, and it is necessary that we should
          reflect on the position that we occupy, upon the relationship we
          sustain to God, to each other and to our families, that our minds
          may be drawn back again to the God who made us--our Father in the
          heavens, who hears our prayers, and who is ready at all times to
          supply the wants of his faithful Saints. And it is sometimes
          necessary that we should reflect upon the position we hold in
          relation to the earth on which we live, to the existence that we
          had before we came here, and to the eternities to come. We should
          not be sluggish and dull and careless and indifferent; but as the
          ancient Saints were exhorted, so let us exhort you
          to-day--contend earnestly for the faith once delivered to the
          The religion of the everlasting gospel did not originate with any
          man or any set of men. It is wide as the world and originated
          with the Great Eloheim. It is a plan ordained by him before the
          world was for the salvation and redemption of the human family.
          It is a thing that men, in various dispensations, under the
          influence and inspiration of the Almighty, have possessed more or
          less; and it is to that we are indebted for all the knowledge,
          and the light, and all the intelligence in relation to eternity.
          The gospel which you have received you received not of man,
          neither by man, but on the same principle as they received it in
          former days--by the revelation of Jesus Christ, by the
          communication of God to man, and any religion that has not this
          for its foundation amounts to nothing, and any superstructure
          built upon any other foundation will fade and vanish away like
          the baseless fabric of a vision, and leave not a wreck behind.
          One of old in speaking of these things said: If any man build
          with wood, or hay, or stubble, or anything perishable, the day
          would come when it would be burned up and there would be left
          neither root nor branch. But we, as eternal beings, associated
          with an eternal God, having a religion that leads to that God,
          are desirous, as the ancients were, to know something about him,
          to be brought into communication with him, to fulfil the measure
          of our creation and our destiny on the earth, and to help the
          Lord to bring to pass those things that he designed from before
          the foundation of the world, in regard to the human family. God
          has designed to redeem the earth whereon we live. Mankind were
          placed on this earth for a certain purpose, and however erratic,
          foolish and visionary the course of man may have been, the
          Almighty has never altered his purpose, never changed his designs
          nor abrogated his laws; but with one steady undeviating course
          from the time the morning stars first sang together for joy,
          until the earth shall be redeemed from under the curse and every
          creature in heaven and on the earth shall be heard to say:
          "Blessing and glory, honor and power, might, majesty and dominion
          be ascribed unto Him who sits upon the throne and to the Lamb for
          ever;" and throughout all the successive ages that have been and
          that will be, his course is one eternal round. He has had one
          object in view, and that object will be accomplished in regard to
          man and the earth whereon he lives. The only question with us is
          whether we will co-operate with God, or whether we will
          individually work out our own salvation or not; whether we will
          individually fulfil the various responsibilities that devolve
          upon us or not; whether we will attend to the ordinances that God
          has introduced or not; for ourselves to begin with, for our
          families, for the living and for the dead. Whether we will
          co-operate in building temples and administering in them; whether
          we will unite with the Almighty, under the direction of his holy
          priesthood, in bringing to pass things that have been spoken of
          by the holy prophets since the world was; whether we will contend
          earnestly for the faith once delivered to the Saints. These
          things rest with us to a certain extent. God has communicated to
          the Latter-day Saints principles that the world are ignorant of,
          and being ignorant of them they know not how to appreciate our
          feelings. They call good evil, light darkness, error truth, and
          truth error, because they have not the means of seeing the
          difference between one and the other. "But you are a chosen
          people, a royal generation, a holy priesthood," separate and set
          apart by the Almighty for the accomplishment of his purposes. God
          has ordained among you presidents, apostles, prophets, high
          priests, seventies, bishops and other authorities; they are of
          his appointment, empowered and directed by him, under his
          influence, teaching his law, unfolding the principles of life,
          and are organized and ordained expressly to lead the people in
          the path of exaltation and eternal glory. The world know nothing
          about these things--we are not talking to them to-day, they can
          not comprehend them. Their religion teaches them nothing about
          any such things--they are simply a phantasm to them. They have
          not any revelation, they do not profess it. All that they have is
          their Bible given by ancient men of God, who spoke as they were
          moved upon by the Holy Ghost. They repudiate the Holy Ghost, not
          in name, but in reality. Many of them are very sincere; we give
          them credit for that. That is all right, but they do not
          understand our principles, views, or ideas. They could not do as
          we have done; they could not trust in God as our Elders do. Their
          ideas are more material. Ask any of them to go to the ends of the
          earth, as these Elders have done, without purse or scrip,
          trusting in God, would they do it? No, they would not, they would
          see the gospel damned first, and then they would not. They do not
          understand the principle by which we are actuated, we have done
          it and we will do it again, and we will keep doing it; we believe
          in a living God, in a living religion, in the living, vital,
          eternal principles which God has communicated; this is the reason
          why we act as we do, why we talk and believe as we do. Men are
          not supposed to understand our principles. The Scripture says
          that no man knows the things of God but by the Spirit of God. And
          how are they to get that? Just as you got it. And how was that?
          By repenting of your sings, being baptized in the name of Jesus
          for their remission; by having hands laid upon you by those
          having authority for the reception of the Holy Ghost. This is the
          way God appointed in former days, this is the way he has
          appointed in our day.
          And what brought you here? Why the light of revelation--the light
          of truth, the gift of the Holy Ghost, the power of God. That is
          what brought you here. The Gospel you received you received not
          of men, but by the revelations of Jesus Christ; and consequently
          how can men outside comprehend these things? They can not do it,
          it is beyond their reach. They can reason on natural principles;
          they have their own peculiar ideas, but they cannot comprehend
          the Latter-day Saints. "Mormonism" is an enigma to the world.
          Why, they United States have been trying to solve the problem of
          "Mormonism" for years and years; but with all their sagacity and
          intelligence they have not made it out yet; and they never will.
          Philosophy can not comprehend it; it is beyond the reach of
          natural philosophy. It is the philosophy of heaven, it is the
          revelation of God to man. It is philosophical, but it is heavenly
          philosophy, and beyond the ken of human judgment, beyond the
          reach of human intelligence. They cannot grasp it, it is as high
          as heaven, what can they know about it? It is deeper than hell,
          they cannot fathom it. It is as wide as the universe, it extends
          over all creation. It goes back into eternity and forward into
          eternity. It associates with the past, present and future; it is
          connected with time and eternity, with men, angels, and Gods,
          with beings that were, that are and that are to come.
          The Saints of God in all ages had the kind of faith that we have
          to-day. You Latter-day Saints know it, but other men do not. They
          will talk about their nonsense, their ideas and theories, and
          call it the religion of God and the gospel of Jesus Christ. Well,
          I am quite willing they should enjoy their notions. It is all
          right; we would not interfere with them if we could. Our feelings
          in regard to that are just the same as the Lord's. And what are
          his? His ideas are not bound in a nutshell, there is nothing
          contracted about the Almighty. He makes his sun shine on the evil
          and on the good; he sends his rain on the just and on the unjust.
          He is liberal, free, generous, philanthropic, full of benevolence
          and kindness to the human family, and he hopes and desires that
          all men may be saved, and he will save them all as far as they
          are capable of being saved. But he desires that his people shall
          contend earnestly for the faith once delivered to the Saints,
          that as immortal beings they may act in unison with the Almighty,
          that they may be inspired by the principle of revelation; that
          they should comprehend something of their dignity and manhood; of
          their relationship to eternity, to the world that we live in as
          it is and as it will be, and to the worlds that are to come. The
          Lord has no such idea as some of these narrow, contracted
          sectarian people have that we read of. They remind me of a prayer
          of a man I once heard of, who in his prayer said: "Lord bless me
          my wife, my son John and his wife, us four and no more, amen." I
          do not believe in any such thing as that. I think the world on
          which we live was organized for a certain purpose. I think that
          man was made for a certain purpose, and so do you as Latter-day
          Saints. We think that the spirit of man, possessing a body, will
          through the medium of the everlasting Gospel, be exalted; and
          that man, inasmuch as he is faithful, will, by and by, be
          associated with the Gods in the eternal worlds; and while we
          plant and sow and reap, and pursue the common avocations of life,
          as other men do, our main object is eternal lives and
          exaltations; our main object is to prepare ourselves, our
          posterity and our progenitors for thrones, principalities and
          powers in the eternal worlds.
          This is what we are after, and what the ancient Saints were
          after. This is what Adam, Noah, Enoch, Abraham and the Prophets
          were after, that they might fulfil their destiny on the earth,
          and, as one of the old Prophets said, "stand in their lot in the
          end of days," when the books should be opened, when the great
          white throne would appear and he who sits upon it, before whose
          face the heavens and the earth fled away; that we and they, and
          they and we might be prepared, having fulfilled the measure of
          our creation on the earth, to associate with the intelligences
          that exist in the eternal worlds; be admitted again to the
          presence of our Father, whence we came, and participate in those
          eternal realities which mankind, without revelation, know nothing
          about. We are here for that purpose; we left our homes for that
          purpose; we are building temples for that purpose; we are
          receiving endowments for that purpose; we are making covenants
          for that purpose; we are administering for the living and the
          dead for that purpose, and all our objects, and all our aims,
          like the object and aim of inspired men in former days, are
          altogether with reference to eternal realities as well as to
          time. We have a Zion to build up, and we shall build it. We shall
          build it. WE SHALL BUILD IT. No power can stop it. God has
          established his kingdom, it is in his hands, and no influence, no
          power, no combination of whatever kind it may be can stop the
          progress of the work of God. You Latter-day Saints know very well
          that you have not received a cunningly devised fable, concocted
          by the wisdom, ingenuity, talent or caprice of man. All of you
          who comprehend the Gospel comprehend this; you all, male and
          female, if you are living your religion, know this. Men of old
          knew it as well as you; and by and by we expect to live and
          associate with them, with Patriarchs, Prophets and men of God,
          who had faith in him, the accomplishment of his purposes in
          former times, and we are contending for the faith which they
          possessed. For instance old Moses and Elias, you know, came to
          Peter, James, John and Jesus while they were on the mount. They
          did not think they were very old fogies that it was not worth
          while to listen to; but said they, "Let us make three
          tabernacles, one for thee, one for Moses and one for Elias. It is
          good to be here, why here is old Moses, and old Elias." Who was
          Moses? A man who had the ancient Gospel in former times. Who was
          Elias? A man who had the ancient Gospel in former times. They
          came and administered unto Jesus, and his Apostles would have
          liked to stay with them for ever. But they could not do it at
          that time.
          Then again we read of John on the Isle of Patmos. You know he was
          in vision, and the Lord revealed unto him many great things, and
          there was a personage appeared, one of the old Prophets that used
          to be led around probably by a marshal. John thought he was an
          angel, and he was about to fall down and worship him after he had
          unfolded to him the glories of eternity. "But," says he, "do not
          do it." "Why?" "Because I am one of thy fellowservants, the
          Prophets; I am one of those old fellows that used to have to
          wander about in my day in sheepskins and goatskins. The priests,
          hypocrites, &c., of that day persecuted me; but now I am exalted,
          and have come to minister unto you John."
          While the world was wrapped in superstition, ignorance and
          darkness, the angels of God came and ministered to Joseph Smith,
          and unfolded to him the purposes of God and made known his
          designs. Joseph told it to the people, and through this means you
          are gathered together as you are to-day. What did men, the best
          of them, know about the Gospel, or about Apostles or Prophets,
          when the Prophet Joseph made his appearance? Nothing at all, and
          yet there have been good men. Old John Wesley, for instance, in
          his day, was very anxious to see something of this kind, but he
          could not see it. Says he--
                 "From chosen Abraham's seed,
                  The old apostles choose,
                  O'er isles and continents to spread
                  The dead reviving news."
          He would have been glad to see something of that kind, but he
          could not. It was reserved for Joseph Smith and the Latter-day
          Saints; it was reserved for our day. Well, then, what will we do?
          Fulfil the measure of our creation, go to work and redeem those
          men who had not the Gospel, be baptized for them, as the
          Scriptures tell us, and bring them up, for they without us can
          not be made perfect, neither can we be made perfect without them.
          And we will fulfil and accomplish the purposes of God, and bring
          to pass the things which were spoken of by the Prophets.
          This is what we are after, and we shall accomplish it, and no man
          can stop it, no organization, no power, no authority, for God is
          at the helm, and his kingdom is onward, onward, onward, and it
          will continue, and grow and increase until the kingdoms of this
          world shall become the kingdoms of our God and his Christ.
          May God help us to be faithful, in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 / George
          Albert Smith, May 19, 1872
                          George Albert Smith, May 19, 1872
                  Delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                                Sunday, May 19, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          And in that day seven women shall take hold of one man, saying,
          We will eat our own bread and wear our own apparel: only let us
          be called by thy name to take away our reproach.
          In that day shall the branch of the Lord be beautiful and
          glorious, and the fruit of the earth shall be excellent and
          comely for them that are escaped of Israel.
          And it shall come to pass that he that is left in Zion, and he
          that remaineth in Jerusalem, shall be called holy, even every one
          that is written among the living in Jerusalem. 
          The portion of the prophecy of Isaiah which I have read indicates
          that at a certain day and under certain circumstances, spoken of
          by the Prophet as being holy, seven women would claim to be
          called by the name of one man. Most of us have a different
          opinion with regard to the application of this prophecy. God
          inspired the Prophet, and it might be necessary, peradventure, to
          inquire what it all means. Seven women are to lay hold of one
          man, saying, "We will eat our own bread and wear our own apparel;
          only let us be called by thy name, to take away our reproach."
          What is the meaning of this last sentiment? We will let the Bible
          explain it. You remember that when Rachel, the second wife of
          Jacob, the father of the tribes of Israel, found herself barren,
          while the other wives of her husband were bearing children, she
          prayed to the Lord that he, in his abundant mercy, would give her
          children, and when God heard her prayer and worked a miracle in
          her favor, causing her who was barren to become fruitful and
          bring forth a child, she said, God had taken away her reproach.
          This illustrates the meaning of the text. I did not make the
          prophecy, neither had I anything to do with making the history of
          Rachel, or even chronicling the Event named.
          In relation to Father Jacob, it is true he had four wives, and
          they bore him twelve sons, and their descendants are the twelve
          tribes of Israel. We are told by the Apostle John that the names
          of Jacob's twelve sons--the sons of a polygamist and his four
          wives--will be written upon the gates of the holy Jerusalem; and
          there are none of us who expect to enter in through those gates
          but will have to acknowledge the truth of that doctrine. It is
          true that the principle of plurality of wives was adopted by the
          Church of Latter-day Saints in consequence of the revelation and
          commandment which God gave to Joseph Smith, and which, through
          him, were laid upon the heads of this people; and we quote the
          passages that we do quote, in relation to the principle of
          celestial marriage from the Old and New Testament, to prove that
          God is consistent with himself; that if he revealed to his Saints
          in the last days, the doctrine of plurality of wives, it was in
          fulfillment of the prophecy of Isaiah and others of the Prophets,
          and in accordance with the example which was set by Abraham,
          Jacob, Moses, and by holy men of ancient days.
          In relation to the world "reproach" in our text, I will make
          another reference. In the first chapter of Luke's Gospel, verses
          23 and 24, we find Elizabeth rejoicing because God had taken away
          her reproach. She though she had been barren, became the mother
          of John the Baptist.
          These passages tell in so many plain words why it was that seven
          women wished to be called by the name of one man--it was that
          they might have the privilege of bearing children.
          Now, if God brings to pass this prophecy in the glorious day
          which our text speaks of, when holiness and righteousness are to
          rule, and when truth is to have dominion, and peace dwell in the
          earth, although all the world may have been opposed to it, we can
          not be responsible. Until some person can find a passage in the
          Old or New Testament that definitely forbids a plurality of
          wives, with the many incidents of history, items of law, and
          declarations of Prophets in relation to the practice by the
          ancient Saints of that doctrine, we are able to assert that the
          Bible is a polygamous book, and that no man can believe it
          without believing plurality of wives, under some circumstances to
          be correct. I know it has been said that the Old Testament
          permitted plurality of wives, but the New forbids it. The Savior
          said he came not to destroy the law but to fulfil it, and that
          not a jot or tittle of the law or Prophets should pass away, but
          all should be fulfilled. The new dispensation did not annihilate
          the principles of law and right, as revealed in the Old. Both
          John the Baptist and the Savior denounced all sins with an
          unsparing hand, and especially adultery, fornication and divorce;
          and not a sentence is found in the New Testament which prohibits
          plurality of wives, though the Savior and his Apostles lived in a
          country where it was practised; and it is impossible to believe
          that if it were a sin it would have escaped definite rebuke and
          absolute condemnation.
          The petition to Congress which has been read here to-day is a
          perfect wonder, I presume, to those who have heard it. It is
          astonishing to me, and doubtless to all who listened to all who
          listened to it, and especially those who reside here, that such a
          statement could be got up by any individual whatever, that any
          imagination could be so tortured as to manufacture so unmitigated
          a tissue of utter and absolute falsehoods; and much more that
          persons could be found who would think so little of their
          reputation as to sign such a statement. We understand, however,
          that many of the persons whose names are on that petition did not
          see the original. Many of them thought they were simply signing a
          petition against the admission of Utah as a State, without
          bringing personal charges against a people among whom they have
          lived in perfect safety, and in a country where peace and order
          have prevailed, and where all have enjoyed the uniform protection
          which our Territorial laws and the general organization of
          society give. I regret exceedingly that such a document should be
          made public; but as it is, with the list of names attached to it,
          was published by order of the United States Senate, it was
          thought proper to read it to the congregation that all might have
          a chance to know what it was and judge for themselves.
          I came to this valley in 1847, being one of the 143 pioneers who
          searched out and made the roads from the Missouri river here. The
          ample property we possessed in Illinois we had left there; and we
          made the roads, about 300 miles, or nearly across the State of
          Iowa, bridging about thirty streams, and passing through a
          wilderness totally uninhabited save by a few scattered Indians.
          That was as far as we could get the first year. The second
          year--1847--we made the roads from what we termed Winter
          Quarters, about five miles above where Omaha is now situated. We
          traveled on the north side of the river, established our ferry
          across the Elkhorn, and made our road, striking the old Oregon
          trail, as it was called, at the mouth of Ash Hollow; that is, we
          went up on the north side of the Platte to the north fork; while
          Independence road went up on the south side, and struck the north
          fork at Ash Hollow, probably a hundred and eighty miles below
          Fort Laramie. We thought some of crossing the river and taking
          the trapper's trail, but we found it difficult, so we continued
          making anew road on the north side until we reached Fort Laramie.
          There we crossed and made a road a portion of the way, and
          followed the old trail a portion of the way through to Fort
          Bridger. On this route we encountered some companies who were
          going to Oregon, and being unable to get across the Platte and
          Green Rivers we got up the means of ferrying, and ferried them
          across both these rivers, and they proceeded on the route to
          Oregon, while we worked our way across this Wasatch range into
          this valley.
          When we reached here we fond the place very barren; but it was
          the best prospect we had seen for five hundred miles. The creek
          we now call City Creek came out of the mountains, and divided
          into branches, and finally sank down into the ground, apparently
          without reaching Jordan river. It had about its sinks some green
          spots of rushes and grass, but except that the country was very
          naked and barren. The city plot here did not even bear good sage;
          and there was a little grass, but it was very dry. Along the
          stream were a dozen or so of scrubby cottonwoods and a few
          willows. The rest of the ground was naked, except being nearly
          covered with immense numbers of large, black crickets, which had
          devoured most of the leaves of the cottonwoods and willows; and
          when we went to work to cut a ditch to carry the water down to
          the place known as Old Fort block, where we first built our fort,
          so dry was the soil of the ditch that it took the whole stream
          two and a half days to reach the desired point.
          It was in this desolate place--1034 miles from the Missouri
          river, and thirteen or fourteen hundred from Nauvoo--the place
          whence we had ben expelled, that we commenced our location. It
          was understood that a party had undertaken to cross west here,
          some year or two before, and had perished. The name of the man
          who led the party was Hastings, and the route west is called
          Hastings' cut off. It is said that John C. Fremont had been in
          this valley the fall previous, but we had no report of his
          explorations. We had an account of him visiting the north end of
          Great Salt Lake, and the south end of Utah Lake; but so ignorant
          was he at the time of the country between the two lakes that his
          map, published after his return from his exploration, shows Salt
          Lake and Utah Lake to be one body or water, whereas there is a
          river about fifty miles long between them.
          In a few days after we reached here another party arrived,
          increasing our numbers to about four hundred. We had but very
          little provisions, which we had brought with us. The country was
          destitute of game, and the most rigid economy was necessary in
          order to subsist. We remained about a month, when a portion of
          the pioneers, myself among the number, started back for our
          families, who were still encamped at Winter Quarters, on the
          Missouri river; and on our way back we met about seven hundred
          wagons with families moving on for this place. These families
          came in late, and enclosed themselves in the Old Fort block, and
          the two blocks south of it, where they lived in security from the
          Indians, and during the winter they succeeded, partially, in
          enclosing a field, making preparations for irrigation, and sowing
          several thousand acres of grain. They found it necessary to
          ration themselves on account of the scarcity of their provisions,
          and I believe that almost every family allowed themselves to half
          a pound of flour a day, that is, if they had it, many to less;
          and they went over these hills digging the sego--a wild, bulbous
          root, sometimes eaten by the Indians, and everything that they
          could get that had any nutriment in it. In those days the animals
          that were killed, having crossed the plains, were generally very
          poor; but they were used with the greatest economy, hides, feet
          and tail, all being eaten. I believe they tell a story of a
          certain rule among the Mahomedans, in relation to eating swine's
          flesh. Some of them refuse it, but as a general thing the various
          classes of them only refuse certain portions--some reject the
          snout, some the ear, others the feet, others the tail, and so on;
          but among the whole Mussulman race they "go the whole hog." Among
          the earliest settlers in this valley there was no rejection; and
          there are some, who lived here the first two years after our
          arrival, who will now say that they never tasted any food so
          sweet as boiled rawhide. About the time our first crop began to
          head out, the crickets made their appearance, and devoured the
          greater portion of it. This was awfully discouraging. Our
          nurserymen had collected their seeds, and planted them, and some
          twenty or thirty thousand trees had got up, may be five or six
          inches high, and one day, while the nurserymen had gone to
          dinner, a swarm of crickets came down and destroyed all the trees
          but three. That was the commencement of our nursery business in
          this city. It is believed, fully, by the Latter-day Saints of
          that time, that God delivered them from utter starvation by
          sending flocks of gulls from the lake, which ate up the crickets,
          and saved a portion of their crop. The crickets have not troubled
          the agriculturists in the valley, materially, since, but the
          flying grasshoppers have come in immense numbers, and in 1855
          reduced all the families in the Territory to half the allowance
          of food they needed; and for several years back this plague has
          probably destroyed from one-third to one-half the fruits of the
          farmer's labors. These are very material drawbacks to our
          prosperity with which we have had to contend here in Utah.
          Persons unacquainted with the manner and difficulties of
          irrigation can not realize the immense labor, care and attention
          that are necessary to commence this work. Friends come in and
          look over our city, and say, "Why, how nice this water is that
          runs through all the streets!" But the fact is, there is not a
          tree, bush, or spear of grass grown in these low valleys without
          being irrigated naturally or artificially, and there is only very
          few and very small spots where natural irrigation is attainable.
          By natural irrigation I mean that the water is so near the
          surface of the ground as to moisten it sufficiently to make it
          produce vegetation, and these places are only found about the
          sinks of creeks. Just turn the water that passes through these
          streets back into the original channel, and next fall would see
          most of the trees dead. All the results you see here, in the way
          of agriculture, were made, are held by main strength and
          constraint and continued diligence.
          During the days of our early settlement, it was necessary that
          measures be taken to supply the wants of those who were without
          food, and for years a fast was held every month, and sometimes
          every week. The amount of food that would have been consumed by a
          family during that fast was presented to the needy, and in this
          way, struggling for three years in succession, the people were
          sustained, and nobody perished. When we did finally succeed in
          raising the necessaries of life, thousands of strangers came
          pouring in here, a great many of them destitute of bread. They
          had started for the gold mines without knowing how far it was,
          what outfit to take, or how to take care of themselves; and great
          numbers of them, when they reached here, had to be assisted on
          their journey, and there were thousands who went to California
          during the early days of the gold excitement there, who must have
          perished had it not been for the assistance they obtained from
          the settlements of these valleys.
          We came here full of enterprise, and our only hope for
          subsistence was in agriculture. We found mines of lead, and
          minerals of various kinds; but we could do nothing with them. The
          Legislative Assembly memorialized Congress for a railroad and a
          telegraph line across the continent, and they set forth in that
          petition, in 1852, that the mineral resources of these mountains
          could never be developed without a railroad; and that if they
          would build a railroad, or make the necessary arrangement for
          one, the trade of China and the East Indies would pass through
          the heart of the American States. We have lived to see these
          predictions fulfilled.
          You may pass, friends, over the Territory at your leisure; go
          from the north to the south, and you will find the inhabitants,
          generally, industrious, temperate, moral, straightforward,
          diligent and honest, very few spending their time about gambling
          hells or drinking saloons; in fact very few villages support such
          establishments, and wherever you find them you may be sure that
          modern civilization has made inroads there. When you see a gang
          of men standing round, loafing about a place, smoking cigars,
          drinking whisky, and looking for something to turn up, you may
          generally set it down there is no Latter-day Saint there, or if
          there is a "Mormon" mixed up with them he is becoming
          demoralized. If the faith of the Latter-day Saints be adhered to
          as it should be, men would be temperate and moral, and they would
          avoid sing profane language; and one of the injunctions of their
          religion is that the idler shall not eat the bread of the
          We have fed thousands and tens of thousands of strangers who have
          passed through here without means, and no person has been
          permitted to go hungry in our midst if we knew it, admitting at
          the same time that our means of subsistence were limited, and all
          that we have wrenched from the soil has been by main strength.
          I would like to draw a little comparison: I moved my family in
          '49. I came out in '47, and went back again and made arrangements
          to get back with my family, the earliest possible, which was in
          49. I brought in two hundred pounds of flour a head for the
          family, which I ran out in short allowances to each one of them,
          and I divided some to the neighbors, there being numbers of them
          around who had got out of food, and we eked it out little by
          little, little by little. If a friend called and had his dinner
          with us, why, we had to shorten our allowance of bread. There was
          no place we could go and buy a little flour or a little beef, for
          nobody had any but what they wanted themselves, and what they
          must have themselves, and if we divided our little out we,
          ourselves, must go hungry. If we lived fast to-day, we must
          starve to-morrow, and in this way we stretched the matter along.
          God, in his mercy, blessed us with good health; we had good
          health, hard work and short allowance of food. There was one
          thing we were very thankful for: We had been mobbed a number of
          times--five times driven from our homes. We had left our
          inheritances in Missouri and Illinois, and had got nothing for
          them, and here, whatever other things we lacked, we had the
          privilege of worshiping God according to the dictates of our
          consciences, and we could go to meeting, and preach and pray
          without anybody interrupting us; for although there were
          thousands and thousands of strangers constantly passing through
          our territory, they generally treated us with kindness and
          consideration. How is it now with us with regard to the
          necessaries of life? If a man is out of bread he can hardly find
          a house but what, if he enters and says, "I am hungry, give me
          something to eat," the reply will be, "yes, we have plenty." And
          there are thousands of men and women who have come from the
          States and from Europe. We have contributed immense sums, and
          sent our teams by the hundred to the Missouri river to bring them
          here; and when they got here, their labor, industry and economy
          would enable them at once to obtain food and the necessaries of
          life, plain, to be sure, but an abundance of such as the country
          afforded. No one that is hungry can go to a house or a family and
          ask for bread and not obtain it. Look at the contrast; and it has
          been effected by years of fasting and united industry, poverty
          and toil, by the pioneers of this country. To be sure we have had
          plenty of the sayings of the Savior upon our heads to satisfy us
          that we were right in one particular. He says: "Blessed are ye
          when men shall persecute you, and say all manner of evil
          concerning you, falsely, for my sake.
          We bid welcome to our friends. The fields are wide and open, and
          the mountains are, no doubt, full of mineral. At any rate, every
          man has his chance, if he will dig for it. Dig for the treasures,
          and open the fields and the farms, but do not trespass on the
          rights of your neighbors. Worship God according to the dictates
          of your conscience, observe the law of heaven, but never, under
          any circumstances, intrude upon the rights of others. These are
          the principles which rule here. Look at these things, and realize
          that it is to the efforts of the inhabitants of this country,
          their labors, toils and sacrifices, that we owe our present
          comfort. We commenced by hauling carding machines and printing
          offices across the mountains; we built factories, and undertook
          to raise wool; we labored to produce flax and hemp, not very
          successfully, but we did all we could. Thousands of our brethren
          did not believe it possible ever to raise fruit; but God tempered
          the climate, and, although in the tops of the mountains, we have
          raised abundance of fruit in many of our settlements. Our sheep
          have become productive, our herds have increased, and we have
          laid a foundation for plenty; and any pilgrim who comes along,
          who wishes to obtain food and raiment, can obtain it, for it is
          here; and he can go into the mountains, and if fortune favor him
          he may strike something which he may desire, though I must
          honestly confess that, so far as I am concerned, I believe the
          plan for any man to pursue who wishes to lay a foundation for
          future independence, is to procure a piece of land and make a
          farm. He might, peradventure, strike an "Emma" mine; but I think
          that kind of luck will be the exception instead of the rule; but,
          as a general thing, the man who labors industriously to make
          himself a farm, creates around him a good, comfortable home in a
          few years. Of course, if men go prospecting for minerals, they
          know it is a good deal like a lottery. Our railroad is going
          south, and as it progresses, new mines and new mining interests
          will, without doubt, be opened and developed; and as a result of
          the labors of developing the resources of the Territory, I
          realize that millions will be benefitted.
          There is one thing that our friends do not realize. When they
          come here they make up their minds that "Mormonism" is a humbug,
          and their mistake is, it is true. Joseph Smith was a Prophet of
          God, and the plan of salvation revealed through him is the Gospel
          of Jesus christ; and every man and every woman who rejects it,
          rejects the truth, and will be responsible for it; and every man
          and every woman who walks in obedience to its precepts will
          receive glory, honor, immortality and endless lives. I am not
          talking something I guess, I know these things are true; and it
          is the wisdom and prudence, the light and the intelligence of the
          Almighty, revealed through his servants to the Latter-day Saints,
          that have gathered a hundred thousand people from the four
          quarters of the earth and planted them down in comfortable homes
          in Utah, and it is only the inspiration of the father of lies
          that circulates the false reports and the abuse concerning them.
          May God bless you my friends. You are welcome in this land. Go
          and be blessed; and as you go to your homes, to the four winds of
          heaven, tell the truth about the Latter-day Saints. May God
          enable us to overcome and be faithful in all things, that we may
          finally inherit his kingdom, through Jesus our Redeemer. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 /
          Brigham Young, May 26th, 1872
                            Brigham Young, May 26th, 1872
             Delivered in the Tabernacle, Ogden City, Sunday Afternoon,
                                   May 26th, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          I am happy for the privilege of standing before this congregation
          and speaking to them. I am thankful to see the spirit that is
          manifested by the people to inquire after the truth, to learn the
          way of life. I rejoice to see the disposition manifested by the
          Latter-day Saints to attend places of worship. But this is a
          small part of our faith. I wish to say to the Latter-day Saints
          that the Gospel of life and salvation is the best institution
          that we, as mortal beings, can invest in. Go into the financial
          circles of the world, and you will find men gather and project
          their plans for business, for railroads, for ship companies, for
          merchandizing, and various other pursuits. You will see those
          engaged in these companies associate together, confer with each
          other, lay their plans before each other, investigate them, scan
          every branch, and every part and particle of their business. We
          are engaged in a higher-toned branch of business than any
          merchants or railroad men, or any institution of an earthly
          nature, and it is pleasing to see the Latter-day Saints meet
          together to talk over this matter, and to learn the course they
          should pursue to gain the object of their pursuit. If an inquiry
          arises in any of your minds with regard to this, I will answer it
          by saying that we are in pursuit of all there is before us--life,
          light, wealth, intelligence, all that can be possessed on the
          earth by mortal man, and then in a higher state, where there will
          be a more perfect development of the smattering of knowledge than
          we received here, and all that can be enjoyed by intelligent
          beings in the celestial kingdom of our God. Is this our object?
          Certainly it is. We are not in the same attitude that the people
          were a few thousand years ago--they were depending on the Prophet
          or Prophets, or on having immediate revelation for themselves to
          know the will of the Lord, without the record of their
          predecessors, while we have the records of those who have lived
          before us, also the testimony of the Holy Spirit; and, to the
          satisfaction of all who desire a testimony, we can turn to this
          book and read that which we believe, learn the object of our
          pursuit, the end that we expect to accomplish--the end of the
          race as far as mortality is concerned--and the fullness of the
          glory that is beyond this valley of tears; consequently we have
          the advantage of those who lived before us. We are in pursuit of
          knowledge; and when you meet together, if you have a word of
          prophecy, a dream, a vision, or a word of wisdom, impart the same
          to the people.
          Let me ask you, my brethren and sisters, Do you want wealth? If
          you do, do not be in a hurry. Do you want the riches pertaining
          to this world? Yes, we acknowledge we do. Then, be calm,
          contented, composed; keep your pulses correct, do not let them
          get up to a hundred and twenty, but keep them as nigh as you can,
          ranging from seventy to seventy-six; and when there is an
          appointment for a meeting be sure to attend that meeting. If
          there is to be a two-days' meeting in Ogden, come to it; spend
          the time here and learn what is going on. Watch closely, hear
          every word that is spoken, let every heart be lifted to God for
          wisdom, and know and understand every word of prophecy, every
          revelation that may be given, every counsel that may be presented
          to the people, that you may be able to weigh, measure, comprehend
          and decide between that which is of God and that which is not of
          God. Refuse the evil, learn wisdom, and grow in grace and in the
          knowledge of the truth. If there is a meeting appointed for the
          Seventies, let them come together, and let no man say "I am in a
          hurry in my work, and have not time to attend." Every man that
          belongs to these quorums should be on hand at the time appointed,
          and not say, "I will work to the last minute, before I start fort
          the meeting." Take time, prepare yourselves, be at the place of
          gathering promptly, to the minute, that you may hear the first
          word, then you will hear every word that is spoken and every
          counsel that is given.
          If there is a Bishop's meeting, let every Bishop, Priest, Teacher
          and Deacon attend and no man among them say, "I must go and water
          my grain," "cut my hay," or "gather my harvest;" but attend the
          meeting, sit until it is out and hear every word. If you have to
          speak, speak; if you are to hear only, hear every word that is
          said. If there is a prayer meeting appointed, go to that prayer
          meeting; go to the ward meetings, attend every meeting that is
          appointed. I am telling you this, so that you can get rich.
          I will say to the Latter-day Saints, there can not that community
          be found on the face of the whole earth that, as a community, is
          as well off as we are here in these mountains. There are more
          women and children, with their husbands and fathers, sleep under
          their own roof in the midst of the Latter-day Saints than in any
          other community on the face of this earth, in civilization; and
          less women and children go without food and clothing than in any
          other community in Christendom. Looking around among the
          Latter-day Saints I will ask, How many are there who have been
          taken from cellars, from pits under ground, or from their little
          rooms, where one pound, or five dollars, would buy everything
          they possessed on the face of the earth, and brought to this
          country and taught how to plant their potatoes, beans, beets,
          carrots, how to raise their cucumbers and squashes, their corn
          and their wheat, how to milk a cow; feed a calf, take care of the
          chickens; how to build a pig-pen and put a pig in it; to take the
          offals of the house and give to the pig, and how to raise a calf
          or a colt, experience they never had before in their lives? Yet
          they have learned this economy, and some of them, I am sorry to
          say, lift their heel against the Almighty and his anointed. I am
          happy to say, however, that the large percentage of those who
          have been thus rescued from poverty, and placed in circumstances
          of comfort and independence, are still in the faith. How many are
          there here today who never owned a chicken or a pig, and could
          not keep a cat because they had nothing to feed one on, who now
          ride in their wagons, have their carriages, horses, fine harness,
          fine stock of cows, and have butter, milk, cheese and wool at
          their command, and granaries full of wheat, and their barns, if
          they have them, full of hay? Do not the facts which present
          themselves before us, prove that this very desirable change has
          taken place in the circumstances of many? Then come to meeting.
          Appoint your meetings, Elders, and call the Saints together and
          instruct them in the things of the kingdom of God. We have
          missionaries that are travelling through our settlements, and no
          people need preaching more than the Latter-day Saints. They know
          the way, but they are forgetful, and they want somebody or other
          to come along and holloa to them, and say, comparatively, "I will
          warm your ears, my lady;" "Brother, I will warm your ears." "Wake
          up!" "What are you doing? Are you after this mine? Are you after
          that job? Are you after that piece of work? Did you pray in your
          family this morning?" "No." "Why?" "I was in too much of a
          hurry." Stop! Wait! When you get up in the morning, before you
          suffer yourselves to eat one mouthful of food, call your wives
          and children together, bow down before the Lord, ask him to
          forgive your sins, and protect you through the day, to preserve
          you from temptation and all evil, to guide your steps aright,
          that you may do something that day that shall be beneficial to
          the kingdom of God on the earth. Have you time to do this?
          Elders, sisters, have you time to pray? This is the counsel I
          have for the Latter-day Saints to-day. Stop, do not be in a
          hurry. I do not know that I could find a man in our community but
          what wishes wealth, would like to have everything in his
          possession that would conduce to his comfort and convenience. Do
          you know how to get it? "Well," replies one, "If I do not, I wish
          I did; but I do not seem to be exactly fortunate--fortune is
          somewhat against me." I will tell you the reason of this--you are
          in too much of a hurry; you do not go to meeting enough, you do
          not pray enough, you do not red the Scriptures enough, you do not
          meditate enough, you are all the time on the wing, and in such a
          hurry that you do not know what to do first. This is not the way
          to get rich. I merely use the term "rich" to lead the mind along,
          until we obtain eternal riches in the celestial kingdom of God.
          Here we wish for riches in a comparative sense, we wish for the
          comforts of life. If we desire them let us take a course to get
          them. Let me reduce this to a simple saying--one of the most
          simple and homely that can be used--"Keep your dish right side
          up," so that when the shower of porridge does come, you can catch
          your dish full.
          I am not going into the details, to instruct my brethren
          particularly how to get wealth; but in the first place, do not be
          in a hurry. I make that as a general remark. Do you want your
          house neat and clean? Do you want to keep your children neat and
          clean? Do you wish to see every portion of your dwelling, from
          the cellar to the garret, from the wood-house to the parlor, neat
          and clean? Certainly, every sister wishes this; then do not be in
          a hurry. I shall tell you a little circumstance that occurred
          some eighteen years ago, when we had been on a visit to the
          Indians. We had reached Farmington, on our way home, and stopped
          at a certain house. I think there were twelve of us in company.
          Our teams were taken care of. When I alighted from my carriage I
          looked at my watch and we went in, sat down, and chatted with the
          master of the house, while his wife prepared dinner for us. I
          noticed this lady. She whispered to a little girl to take her
          baby out of doors and amuse it; then, when her baby was out of
          the way, she moved about without the least noise--not a word was
          heard from her. She brought everything she needed from the
          buttery and cellar to the kitchen where she spread her table, and
          she mixed and baked her bread, cooked her fruit and meat, and
          from the time we alighted from the carriage until she came and
          whispered in the ear of her husband, "Dinner is ready," it was
          just fifty-five minutes. Said I to myself, "There is a
          housekeeper." I could not help but see this; every time she
          walked back and forth she accomplished a certain amount of
          business. I saw this and was gratified. Now, sisters, you may do
          likewise, if you are not in too big a hurry. Instead of shouting,
          "Sally, where's the dish-cloth?" "Susan, where's the broom?" or,
          "Nancy, have you seen the holder? I want the holder," be calm and
          composed; you are in too much of a hurry. It is just so with men.
          I see them through the world, I have watched their progress for
          many years, and I see that many of them are too much in a hurry.
          If we are not in too much of a hurry we can attend these
          two-days' meetings, and talk to each other. Are you full of
          faith? You can tell whether I am or not by looking at me. You can
          tell whether the brethren who have been speaking to you are full
          of faith in the Gospel by the look of their countenances. You can
          see this if there is not a word spoken; we can tell by our
          feelings when we look at a congregation whether they have faith
          or not. I see there is a great amount of faith in the midst of
          the Latter-day Saints, and I wish there was a little more
          patience and obedience. Perhaps I have said enough with regard to
          these meetings. Elders, appoint your meetings, and invite the
          people to come to them. I want now to go to other matters.
          I will tell you, my brethren, my own feelings with regard to the
          conduct of the Latter-day Saints. In the first place I will say
          that we are governed and controlled too much by the feelings and
          fashions of the world. We lust after the leeks and onions; we
          yield ourselves to the spirit of the world too much. You will
          excuse me, for I must say a few words with regard to this. It is
          true we are bound, and it seems that men's bounds are set by each
          other, more or less. If I, for instance, were to have a coat made
          to suit my own taste, I do not know any of my family and perhaps
          my friends, and especially the tailors, merchants and business
          men, but what would say, "You are an oddity," and they would
          thin, "Your are not fit for society, because you do not fashion
          and pattern after others." I commence here, you know, at myself.
          Well, I will say that I am bound, I can not accomplish my own
          wishes in these things altogether. Perhaps others can not. I go
          to a tailor and say, "I have a piece of cloth, and I want you to
          make me a coat." He cuts that coat to suit himself. I do not see
          a fashion that suits me. What use or comeliness is there in
          putting the legs of the pantaloons on my coat?" Well, perhaps the
          tailor will be a little moderate, and will cut it down
          considerably; but if I were my own tailor I certainly should
          leave off--what shall we call them? "Bustles," "Grecian Bends,"
          or what shall we call them? Though these coat sleeves are not
          exactly like the sleeves of the frocks or dresses worn by the
          ladies forty or fifty years ago, which they used to call
          mutton-legged sleeves, shaped just like the ham of a mutton. I
          recollect there used to be considerable said about them.
          Sometimes a paper would come out and tell of the wreck of a ship,
          on board of which were a hundred and fifty passengers; but, they
          would say, "Thanks be to kind Providence, the ladies took all the
          male passengers into the sleeves of their dresses, and went
          ashore." Such narrations as these, you know, were only meant as a
          satire upon the fashions of the day. Now I am coming right to the
          point, and I wish to say to some of my sisters, not to all, that
          if I were my own tailor I should cut my own coat to suit myself.
          "What would be your fashion" says one? I will tell you. I have a
          coat here which you can see--if I were to take hold of a
          swill-pail, this part of the skirt must drop in; and if I took
          hold of a milk-pail I must take the coat around by the other end,
          and hold it, or else it is in the milk. I see no convenience or
          beauty in it. That which is convenient should be beautiful; and I
          want my coat cut so that when I lift a pail of water, or a milk
          or swill pail the skirts shall not fail into it; and so with the
          pockets, I would have them convenient. If I were a lady and had a
          piece of cloth to make me a dress, I would cut it so as to cover
          my person handsomely and neatly; and whether it was cut according
          to the fashion or not, custom would soon make it beautiful. I
          would not have eighteen or twenty yards to drag behind me, so
          that if I had to turn round I would have to pick up my dress and
          throw it after me, or, just as a cow does when she kicks over the
          milk pail, throw out one foot to kick the dress out of the way.
          That is not becoming, beautiful or convenient--all such fashions
          are inconvenient. Take that cloth and cut you a skirt that will
          be modest and neat, that does not drag in the dirt nor show your
          garters, but cut it so that it will clear the ground when you
          walk, when you are passing over the floor it will not drag
          everything on the floor, or in the street as you pass along. Put
          enough into the skirt to look well, and if we are to go into
          particulars, of course, we would have to say, we must use enough
          to cover the person. I do not expect mother Eve even did this. We
          could relate some little incidents of our past experience, that
          perhaps would not entertain the people, and still, perhaps, they
          might learn something from them. For instance, in some circles it
          has been fashionable for a lady to wear, perhaps, twelve yards in
          the skirt of her dress, but when it came to the waist, I guess
          three-quarters of a yard would have been enough. I will relate a
          circumstance of which I heard, that took place in the metropolis
          of our country. A gentleman, a stranger, was invited to a grand
          dinner party there. The ladies of course were dressed in the
          height of fashion, their trails dragging behind them, and
          their--well, I suppose there was a band over the shoulder to the
          waist, but I do not recollect whether the gentleman said there
          was or not; but one gentleman present, who knew this gentleman
          was a stranger, said to him, with all the loveliness and elegance
          in his heart that one could imagine--"Is not this beautiful? Did
          you ever see the like of this?" "No sir," said the party
          questioned, "never since I was weaned." Well, all this, you know,
          is custom and fashion.
          Now, I wish to say to my sisters, If you will be just a little
          more moderate, I should like it very much. Some of you, and
          especially the young sisters, may say, "Why, Brother Brigham, how
          do your daughters dress?" I will say, to my shame, many of them,
          and many do not. Then I must have a great many, for if I have
          many that do and many that do not, that will amount to a great
          many. But I guess I will let it go. Some of them are modest,
          delicate, neat, and look beautiful, and do not want twenty-four
          yards for a dress, nor seventeen. But this is uncomely, uncouth
          and ill-looking. What shall I call it? A camel's back? You will
          say they go from the lady to the camel, and from the camel to the
          lady, and so on and so forth. They are called, I believe,
          "Grecian Bends," but I do not think this term is exactly proper.
          Are they comely in appearance? No, they are not. Then I should
          like my daughters and my sisters to lay them aside. They should
          dress neatly and comely, and to suit themselves, but not to suit
          anybody else. We have the ability to tell what looks well, just
          as well as anybody else. We need not go to New York, London, or
          Paris to tell whether a coat looks well if it has a collar half
          an inch wide. Do you recollect when collars were not more than
          that? I do, and I recollect when they were about six or seven
          inches in width. Now we need not go to Paris to ask them whether
          a coat looks just right with a half inch or a five-inch collar;
          we are the judges, and can decide that just as well as anybody
          else on the face of the earth. I would not swap my eyes with any
          living person for beauty and comeliness. I would rather trust to
          my eyes for beauty, excellency and comeliness in dress, than any
          other person's eyes I know of. We should be our own judges. This,
          I say, to my sisters. Pause, reflect, look at the facts in the
          case as regards the folly and expense of fashion. Take the people
          of this city, and if you can form a correct estimate of the cost
          of the useless articles they wear. (I think I brought this
          subject up a year ago this summer, when here.) Just take these
          useless articles that do no good to the body of the persons who
          use them, and we would find that the means expended in their
          purchase would enable us to relieve many poor, suffering,
          distressed creatures abroad in the nations of the earth, and
          bring them here and put them in a situation in which they would
          be healthy, wealthy and happy. If we make a calculation on this
          subject we shall find that the waste of the Latter-day Saints is
          immense. There is a little town, south of here, the ladies of
          which--the F. R. Society, took it into their minds, along in the
          latter part of the winter, when we commenced calling upon the
          people to assist the emigration of the poor this summer, to give
          the eggs that their hens laid on Sunday. If they did not serve
          the Lord themselves they resolved to make their hens do it
          one-seventh of the time; and over a month ago I heard they had
          raised by this method about eight hundred dollars. Would they
          miss this? No, they could do without these eggs very well.
          Suppose the ladies of Ogden, who, on account of the many ribbons
          and needless articles they require, are unable to give anything
          else they have, should give one-seventh part of the services of
          their fowls to the bringing of the poor here! If Ogden had
          commenced this last January, thousands and thousands of dollars
          might have been raised by this time. Can you think of such a
          trifling thing as this? Suppose that every man who practices the
          disgusting habit, says to himself, "I will stop eating tobacco,
          and the means I spend in buying it I will give to emigrate the
          poor;" or, that, "what I pay out for liquor I will give to
          emigrate the poor;" and each of the ladies says, "What money I
          pay out for my tea or coffee" (and tobacco, liquor, tea and
          coffee are four very useless articles) "I will give to emigrate
          the poor," how much could be saved, do you think, in this little
          community? Go to the stores, and ask them how much tobacco they
          have sold for twelve months past. Take these little retail
          stores, and then go into the retail departments of the wholesale
          stores, and we should find in this little town, I will ensure,
          that within the twelve months past, more than twelve, yes twenty,
          thousand dollars have been paid for tobacco; and I will say ten
          or twelve, and perhaps twenty, thousand more for liquor; and then
          I will say twenty-five or thirty thousand more for tea or coffee,
          and I guess I could go up to forty thousand dollars, right here
          in Ogden. It is immense, the people have no idea of it, unless
          they go and look for themselves. Get the statistics, and then you
          will know with regard to the facts in the case.
          Now suppose we say we will take the means we are spending for tea
          and coffee, liquor and tobacco, and useless articles in dressing,
          and we will give this to the poor, we would soon have a wealthy
          purse. Who has given anything this season? How many of you have
          given the first five dollars this season to bring the poor to
          Zion? If there is a man or woman in this house that has given
          anything for this purpose, do me the favor to hold up your hand?
          (One or two hands were held up.) I have given a very little, just
          a trifle. Sometimes I give a thousand, sometimes two thousand,
          mostly two thousand, and that is but a trifle. I suppose many
          would say, "Why, that is no more for you than five dollars for
          me." Well, perhaps it is not. I have nothing but what the Lord
          gave me, that is certain; and if he wanted the whole of it, for
          the gathering of the poor this year, he is just as welcome to it
          as I am to eat with you when you invite me to your houses. But
          one thing I can say of a truth, I have not been in a hurry, I
          have taken things moderately, kindly, calmly, and have "kept my
          dish right side up."
          Well now, you who want to give a little to help the poor, please
          hand it over to Bishop Herrick. Bishop Herrick, will you please
          get the bishops together, and request them to ask every ward in
          this county to give something for the gathering of the poor, and
          see who will assist in this good work?
          If we will not be in a hurry, and will pray in our families, pray
          in secret, attend our meetings, be patient and live so that the
          Spirit of the Lord will dwell within us, and witness to God every
          day of our lives, by faithful obedience to this requirements,
          that we are his, I will say we are bound to get the wealth of the
          world. We read in this good book (the Bible) that "the earth is
          the Lord's and the fulness thereof." Everything belongs to him,
          and he is going to give it to his Saints; and all our concern and
          care should be, to be sure that we are Saints. Then it is all
          right, it is by a deed or warranty--a warranty deed, and he will
          warrant and defend it, if we will serve him, and be satisfied
          with his providences, turning neither to the right nor to the
          left, but serving him with an undivided heart all the days of our
          lives. If it pleases him, and he wishes us to travel and preach,
          go to the right or to the left, to the east or to the west, to
          the north or to the south, to live here or live there, to do this
          or to do that, to have little or much and be perfectly satisfied
          and contented his blessings will be secured to us by a warranty
          deed, and he will warrant and defend it.
          If we are not Saints it is a great pity. We have the experience
          of those who lived before us, we have the testimony of the
          fathers, we have the sayings of Jesus and his Apostles, and we
          can peruse them and can exercise faith in the name of Jesus, and
          be guided by the spirit of the Lord by which these testimonies
          were given; and we can know whether we are Saints or whether we
          are not. It has been proclaimed that there is a great difference
          between us and the Christian world. There is. Is the difference
          because we believe in another religion? By no means. The
          difference arises from the fact that we believe this Bible, wide
          open, from genesis to Revelations. They believe it, sealed up,
          never to be opened again to the human family. They believe it
          shut, we believe it open; they believe it in silence, we believe
          it proclaimed on the hose top; and when we scan the Bible and the
          feelings of the Christian world, we find that it is, as has been
          proclaimed here--there probably never was a day on the face of
          the earth when infidelity reigned more completely in the hearts
          of the children of men than it does now. We, as Christians,
          believe in God, in Christ and in his atonement, in repentance and
          obedience, and in receiving the Spirit; but what are the facts in
          the case? We are persecuted, our names are cast out as evil, we
          have the world arrayed against us. And who are at the head of
          this? The Christians. You go to a real infidel--one brought up to
          disbelieve in, and pay no attention to, this book as the word of
          God, and we receive little persecution from him; none whatever in
          comparison with what we receive from those who profess to believe
          it. Where are their witness and testimony that they are right and
          that we are wrong? We have the Scriptures to testify to the right
          and righteousness of the cause we have espoused. They shut up the
          Bible, say they are Christians, and cry, "False prophets, false
          teachers, delusion, delusion, heresy, outcasts, kill them if you
          can not get rid of them without, they must leave, we cannot
          endure them any longer!"
          Where is their proof, where is our proof? What criterion shall we
          go by? We have the Scriptures, we have the Prophets, Jesus and
          the Apostles; we have the revelations of the Spirit of God to
          ourselves; we have the truth within our hearts, and all this is
          proof to us of the validity of the faith that we have embraced;
          and if it is correct, and the Bible is correct; if it is true,
          and the Lord has spoken through his servants, they must be wrong,
          and their own mouths shall judge them in the latter days; and if
          they are to be judged by the Saints of by the Almighty you will
          find the secret, and that will be out of their own mouths they
          will be judged. We have the testimony of all this for ourselves.
          How are you going to know whether this work is true, whether the
          Bible is true, whether Joseph was a Prophet, whether Jesus was
          the Savior, and his Apostles were correct in their teachings?
          There is no way for you and me to know these things but by the
          Spirit of God; and if we live so as to enjoy the light of that
          Spirit, the light of revelation, it will be in us like a well of
          water springing up to everlasting life. If we do not live thus,
          we are in the dark as well as they.
          All religion is a mystery. Do we know this? Certainly. I have an
          experience in this, and so have the elder members of this
          community: we have lived with the Christians. What have been the
          declaration and the sayings of the wisest of the wise among them?
          Is God a personage of Tabernacle? "I know not." Does God dwell
          anywhere, is he a local being, or is he a traveling being? "I
          know not." Does he possess a body, parts and passions? "I know
          not." What of his Son Jesus? What of the evil? Acknowledge there
          is evil in the world--that character that fell from heaven--the
          Son of the Morning, has he a located place where he dwells? "I
          know not." That is the answer. What do you understand by the
          Scriptures? "We do not know what to understand, they are a
          mystery, and beyond our comprehension, we can not comprehend
          them. We are students of divinity but the Scriptures are a
          mystery to us." I recollect once, in my early career, well nigh
          forty years ago, conversing about two hours with a cousin of
          mine, who had finished his studies to be a priest. As I left him
          he said to me, "Cousin Brigham, I have learned more divinity from
          your mouth to-day than I have learned in my four years' study.
          You have told me things that I know are in the Scriptures, and I
          know they are correct, for I feel in my heart and can testify to
          the truth of them; but," said he, "they are not in the books,
          neither in the mouths and hearts of our teachers; our preceptors
          do not understand them, and I have learned more divinity from you
          in two hours than in all my life before." This is their
          experience. Have they knowledge? Go after it, and you will find
          an aching void, a shadow instead of a substance, words which are
          wind, instead of realities.
          We would take the world of mankind by the hand and lead them to
          life and salvation, if they would let us. It was said in my
          office, a few days ago, by a party or railroad men, while
          conversing with me about us as a people, "President Young, you
          are not known, your people are not known; we shall know you
          better hereafter, and they need not publish about you as they
          have, or, if they do, we shall know better than to believe them.
          Why do they publish such things? We are glad to become acquainted
          with you." I replied, "For over forty years I have been striving
          with all my might, in my weak capacity, and with my limited
          knowledge, to make the world acquainted with us and our
          doctrines. There are also thousands and thousand of Elders who
          have traversed this earth over, without purse or scrip, trying to
          get people to learn who the Latter-day Saints are, and what they
          believe in, and why have you not known us? The Bible, Book of
          Mormon, and the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, are published to
          the world with other works, giving to the whole reading world the
          principles we are proclaiming. Why are we not known? I will tell
          you why: the liars are industrious, and, according to the old
          saying, a lie will creep through a keyhole and travel leagues and
          leagues while truth is getting up, wiping her eyes and putting
          her shoes on. That is the reason, and you believe lies instead of
          truth. And," said I, "from this time henceforth, when you read an
          article about the people of Utah, read it candidly and honestly,
          and the Spirit will tell you whether it is true or a lie, and
          believe the truth about us."
          I will say again, brethren and sisters, do not be in a hurry.
          Brethren, if you want to get rich, live so as to enjoy the Spirit
          of the Lord. You will then know exactly what to do in all
          matters. You want the spirit of wisdom in all your business
          transactions, and just as much in faring as anything else. We
          want the Spirit of the Lord from the least chore of labor that we
          perform, to the highest spiritual duty devolving upon the highest
          man in the kingdom of God. We want the Spirit of the Lord to
          guide and direct us through this world, to teach us in spiritual
          things and in temporal things, that we may learn how to gain to
          ourselves the riches of eternity, and secure to ourselves eternal
          God bless you. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 / Orson
          Pratt, April 7, 1872
                             Orson Pratt, April 7, 1872
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER ORSON PRATT,
                  Delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                                   April 7, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          When I look over this vast congregation, assembled in the body of
          this house as well as in the gallery, it seems to be an
          impossibility to make all hear; and to give all an opportunity to
          do so it will be necessary that the closest attention be given
          and that shuffling of feet and whispering cease. I suppose there
          must be congregated here something in the neighborhood of twelve
          thousands persons, and there are but very few voices or lungs
          that are able to reach such a multitude, and edify and instruct
          them. I know from former experience in speaking from this stand,
          that it requires a great exertion of the lungs and body to speak
          so as to be understood, and this great exertion of the physical
          system is calculated in a very short time to weary also the mind,
          therefore I may not be able to address you for any great length
          of time.
          It is now forty-two years since the organization of the Church of
          Jesus Christ on the earth. Forty-two years ago, on the 6th day of
          April, the Prophet Joseph Smith was commanded by the Lord
          Almighty to organize the Kingdom of God on the earth for the last
          time--to set up and make a beginning--to form the nucleus of a
          Government that never should be destroyed from the earth, or, in
          other words, that should stand forever. The founding of
          governments, of whatsoever nature they may be, may be considered
          in the estimation of some, very honorable; but there is no
          special honor attached to a man who is called upon by the
          Almighty to found a Government on the earth, for it is the Lord
          who works by him as an instrument, using him for that purpose.
          That, of course, is honorable. Perhaps there never was a work
          accomplished among men of so great and important a nature as that
          of the foundation of a kingdom that never is to be destroyed.
          About six thousand years have passed away since the Government
          established by the Patriarchs, or by the first man, was commenced
          here on the earth. From that time until the present vast numbers
          and descriptions of Governments, some Patriarchal in their
          nature, others taking the form of kingdoms, others of empires and
          so forth, have been organized here on the earth. During that long
          interval of time whenever a man has founded a Government he has
          ben greatly honored, not only by the generation among whom he
          lied, and in which he formed the Government, but he has been
          honored generally by after generations. But nearly all the
          Governments that have been established have been thrown
          down--they have been only temporary in their nature--existing for
          a few centuries perhaps, and then overthrown. It is not my
          intention this afternoon to examine the nature and forms of these
          various human Governments, but to state in a few words that there
          is now organized on the earth a Government which never will be
          broken as former Governments have been. This will stand for ever.
          It began very small--only six members were organized in this
          Government on Tuesday the 6th day of April, 1830, that is
          according to the vulgar era; according to the true era it was
          some two or three years longer. The Christian era that is in
          common use now among the human family is called the vulgar era,
          because it is incorrect. Jesus, it is acknowledged by the most
          learned men at the present day, was born two or three years
          before the period that is now commonly called the vulgar
          Christian era. It is also acknowledged by the greater portion of
          the learned men of the day, who have carefully examined the
          subject, that Jesus was crucified on the 6th day of April; and
          according to the true Christian era it was precisely eighteen
          hundred years from the day of his crucifixion until the day that
          this Church was organized. Why the Lord chose this particular
          period--the anniversary of the day of his crucifixion for the
          organization of his kingdom on the earth I do not know. I do know
          that he has a set time in his own mind for accomplishing his
          great purposes; but why he should purpose in his own mind that
          precisely eighteen hundred years should elapse from the day of
          the crucifixion until the day of the organization of his church,
          we do not know. Suffice it to say that this is the interval that
          elapsed. The Book of Mormon gives the exact interval from the day
          of his birth to the day of the crucifixion, and by putting these
          two periods together we can ascertain the true Christian era.
          There is a great dispute, however, among chronologists in regard
          to this matter; many of them say Jesus was born one year before
          the vulgar era, others that he was born two years before that.
          Four different chronologists, mentioned by name in Smith's Bible
          Dictionary, place the period three years before the vulgar era;
          others place it at four years before, some five, and some have
          placed it seven years before the present vulgar era. If we take a
          medium between these combined with the testimony of a great many
          who have written upon the subject, we find, as I said before,
          that it makes precisely eighteen hundred years between the two
          great events that took place, namely the crucifixion and the
          building up of his kingdom in these latter days.
          God has seen proper in the progress of this kingdom to restore to
          his servants holding the priesthood every key and power
          pertaining to the restitution of all things spoken of by the
          mouth of all the Holy Prophets since the world began. One of the
          first things that he condescended to restore was the fullness of
          the everlasting Gospel, just according to the prediction of the
          ancient Prophets--by the coming of an angel from heaven. Mr.
          Smith fulfilled that prediction, or rather it was fulfilled to
          him. He declares, in language most plain and positive, that God
          did send an angel from heaven and committed to him the
          everlasting Gospel on plates of gold; or in other words, he had
          it revealed to him by this angel, where the plates of gold were
          deposited containing the everlasting Gospel, as it was preached
          to the ancient inhabitants of this American continent, by the
          personal ministry of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. This was
          the restoration predicted by John in the 14th chapter of
          Revelations, where it is declared that such an event should take
          place. John says that he saw, in vision, and angel come from
          heaven to earth, to restore the everlasting Gospel. No people on
          earth, prior to the advent of the Prophet Joseph Smith, ever
          testified to the fulfilment of John's prediction. If you make the
          inquiry of the various Christian denominations, whether Catholic,
          Greek or Dissenters, they will tell you unitedly that no such
          event characterized the rise of their churches; we have therefore
          their testimony, proving that God never fulfilled this portion of
          his word through them; but on the contrary the united voice and
          testimony of all these Christians, from one end of the earth to
          the other is that the Bible contains the Gospel, "And we have
          preached the Gospel," say they, "as we found it recorded in the
          Bible," and no angel to restore the authority to preach the
          Gospel, to baptize, to confirm by the laying on of hands, to
          administer the Lord's Supper, or to restore or give authority to
          organize the kingdom of God on the earth, was necessary." To this
          we reply, the history of the Gospel is one thing, and the
          authority to preach it and administer its ordinances is another.
          We can read its history in the New Testament; and we can also
          read there how the ancient servants of God organized the Church
          in their day; we can read what ordinances they performed or
          administered among the children of men; we can read what was
          needful for the organization of the Christian Church eighteen
          hundred years ago. We have the history of all these things in the
          Scriptures, but for some seventeen centuries past prior to the
          coming of this angel, there has been no authority to preach it;
          no Apostles, no Prophets, no revelators, no visions from heaven,
          no inspiration from heaven; no voice of the Lord has been heard
          among the nations during the long interval that has elapsed since
          the putting to death of the ancient servants of God, and the
          destruction of the ancient Christian Church. Joseph Smith came to
          this generation testifying to the fulfillment of that which God
          predicted in the Revelations of Saint John--the restoration of
          the Gospel. But says John the Revelator, "when it is restored it
          shall be preached to every nation, kindred, tongue and people."
          Is there any prospect of this Gospel being thus extensively
          preached among the inhabitants of the earth in this generation?
          We need not refer you to the missions that have been taken by the
          Elders of this Church. Their works speak for themselves. Behold
          this vast congregation of people assembled here, and nearly all
          who inhabit this Territory. Why are they here? Because the angel
          has brought the everlasting Gospel, and because the servants of
          God have been commissioned and sent forth with the sound of the
          Gospel among the various nations and kingdoms of the earth; and
          because they have succeeded in preaching it among vast numbers of
          people, and gathering them out from the midst of the nations. But
          it has not yet gone to all nations, kindreds, tongues and people;
          but wait a little longer, it will shortly go, for just as sure as
          it has already been preached to nearly all the nations of
          Christendom, so will it go to every other people--heathen,
          Mahomedan, and every class, whether in Europe, Asia, Africa, or
          the uttermost parts of South America, the frozen regions in the
          north, or the numerous islands in the great western and eastern
          oceans. Every people must be warned that the great day of the
          Lord is close at hand; every people must know that the Lord God
          has spoken in these latter times; every people must know
          something concerning the purposes of the Great Jehovah in
          fulfilling and accomplishing the great preparatory work for the
          second advent of the Son of God from the heavens. Here then is
          the fulfilment of one prophecy. Let us now come to another.
          John, who saw this angel restore the everlasting Gospel to be
          preached to all the nations, declares that another proclamation
          was closely connected with the preaching of the Gospel. What was
          it? "The hour of his judgment has come"--the eleventh hour, the
          last time that God will warn the nations of the earth. "The hour
          of God's judgment has come," and that is the reason why the
          Gospel is to be so extensively preached among all people, nations
          and tongues, because the Lord intends through this warning to
          prepare them, if they will, to escape the hour of his judgment,
          which must come upon all people who will refuse to receive the
          divine message of the everlasting Gospel.
          We will now pass on to another prophecy. Another angel followed.
          What was his proclamation? Another angel followed, and he cried
          with a loud voice, saying: "Babylon is fallen, is fallen. She has
          made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her
          fornication," &c. Spiritual Babylon the Great, "the mother of
          harlots and abominations of the earth." "Mystery Babylon"--that
          great power that has held sway over the nations of the
          earth--that great ecclesiastical power which has ruled over the
          consciences of the children of men, she is to fall and is to be
          destroyed from the face of the earth. Will the righteous fall
          with her? No. Why not? Because there is a way for their escape.
          Now mark another prophecy. "I heard a great voice," says John,
          "from heaven, saying, 'Come out of her, O my people!'" Out of
          where? "Mystery Babylon, the Great"--out of this great confusion
          that exists throughout all the nations and multitudes of
          Christendom. "Come out of her, O my people, that ye partake not
          of her sins, that ye receive not of her plagues; for her sins
          have reached to the heavens, and God hath remembered her
          iniquities!" Is this being fulfilled? Do you see any indications
          of the people of God coming out from "Mystery Babylon the Great?"
          Yes, for forty-two years, and upwards, God has commanded his
          people, not by something devised by a congregation of divines, of
          by human ingenuity, but by a voice from heaven which has been
          published and printed, requiring all who receive the everlasting
          Gospel to come out from the midst of great Babylon. One hundred
          thousand Latter-day Saints, approximately speaking, now inherit
          these mountain regions. They are here because of this prediction
          of John, because of its being fulfilled, because of the voice
          that has come from heaven--the proclamation of the Almighty for
          his people to flee from amongst the nations of the earth. I need
          not say any more in regard to this prophecy; it is in the Bible,
          and is being fulfilled before the eyes of all people.
          Let me refer now to another prophecy. Daniel the Prophet has told
          us that in the latter days after the great image that was seen in
          dream by Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon, representing the
          various kingdoms of the world, should be destroyed, and those
          nations should pass away and become like the chaff of the summer
          threshing floor, the Lord would establish an everlasting
          Government here upon the earth. The Lord God saw proper to reveal
          to his servant Daniel the nature of this Government. He
          represented it as having a very small beginning--as a stone cut
          out of the mountain without hands, which stone should fall upon
          the feet of the image, and they should be broken in pieces. After
          the destruction of the feet all the image should fall--the legs
          of iron, the belly and thighs of brass, the breast and arms of
          silver, the head of gold--representing the remnants of all those
          ancient nations--the Babylonians, Medes and Persians, and the
          Greeks; also the remnants of those that once constituted the
          great Roman empire--those now in Europe and those of European
          origin which have come across the great ocean and established
          themselves here on the vast continent of the west, all, all were
          to be destroyed by the force of this little kingdom to be
          established by the power of truth, and by the authority that
          should characterize the nature of the stone cut out of the
          mountains. "In the days of these kings," says the Prophet, "shall
          the God of heaven set up a kingdom that shall never be destroyed,
          neither shall it be left to any other people, but it shall stand
          for ever," etc. The Prophet Daniel uttered the prophecy; Joseph
          Smith, by authority of the Almighty, fulfilled it, so far as the
          organization or setting up of the kingdom was concerned.
          Let me refer now to some other prophecies. I do not want to dwell
          long upon any of them. We are told in the prophecies of Isaiah
          that before the time of the second advent, when the glory of the
          Lord should be revealed and all flesh should see it together,
          there should be a Zion built up on the earth. The Prophet gives
          the following exhortation to that Zion--"O Zion, thou that
          bringest good tidings, get thee up into the high mountain." Here
          then is a prophecy that, in the latter days, God would have a
          Zion on the earth before he should reveal himself from heaven and
          manifest his glory to all people; and the people called Zion are
          exhorted, in the 40th chapter of Isaiah, to get up into the high
          mountain. Here we are in this great mountain region, in a
          Territory called the mountain Territory. Here we are on the great
          backbone, as it were, of the western hemisphere, located among
          the valleys of this great ridge of mountains, which extends for
          thousands of miles--from the frozen regions in the north almost
          to the southern extremity of South America. Here are the people
          called Zion, gone up into the high mountain, according to the
          prediction of the Prophet Isaiah. Isaiah uttered the prophecy;
          Joseph Smith also prophecied the same thing, but died without
          seeing it fulfilled. His successor, Brigham Young, lived to be
          the favored instrument in the hands of God, of taking the people
          from those countries down in the States, those countries upon the
          low elevations of our globe, and bringing them up here into this
          vast mountain region. Thus the prophecy was uttered--thus it has
          been fulfilled.
          We will pass on to some other prophecies. In the eighteenth
          chapter of the prophecies of Isaiah we have a prediction about a
          time when the Lord should make a great destruction upon a certain
          portion of the earth. The Prophet begins the chapter by saying,
          "woe to the land shadowing with wings, which is beyond the rivers
          of Ethiopia. Recollect where the Prophet dwelt when he uttered
          this prophecy--in Palestine, east of the Mediterranean Sea. Where
          was Ethiopia? South-west from Palestine. Where was there a land
          located beyond the rivers of Ethiopia. Every person acquainted
          with the geography of our globe knows that this American
          continent was beyond the rivers of Ethiopia from the land of
          Palestine, where the prophecy was uttered. A woe was pronounced
          upon that land, and that woe is this: "For afore the harvest,
          when the bud is perfect and the sour grape is ripening in the
          flower, he shall both cut off the sprigs with pruning-hooks, and
          take away and cut down the branches. They shall be left together
          unto the fowls of the mountains, and to the beasts of the earth.
          And the fowls shall summer upon them, and all the beasts of the
          earth shall winter upon them." But first, before this
          destruction, there is a remarkable prophecy. Says the Prophet:
          "All ye inhabitants of the world, and dwellers on the earth, see
          ye when he lifteth up an ensign on the mountains, and when he
          bloweth a trumpet, hear ye." From this we learn that, before this
          great destruction, there is to be an ensign lifted up on the
          mountains, and this, too, beyond the rivers of Ethiopia, from
          Palestine. This is the reason why Zion in the latter days goes up
          into the mountains, in order that an ensign might be lifted up on
          the mountains. This prophecy was uttered some twenty-five hundred
          years ago, and has been fulfilled before the eyes of the people
          in our day.
          But more in regard to this ensign; we find that it was not an
          ensign to be lifted up in Palestine, for in the fifth chapter of
          his prophecies, Isaiah, speaking of it says--"The Lord shall lift
          up an ensign for the nations from afar." What does this mean? It
          means a land far distant from where the Prophet Isaiah lived--the
          land of Palestine. Now there is no land of magnitude or greatness
          that is far off from Palestine that would answer the description
          of this prophecy any better than this great western hemisphere;
          it is located almost on the opposite side of the globe from
          Palestine. The Lord, then, was to lift the ensign on a land that
          was far off from where the Prophet lived; and that ensign, we are
          told, should be set up on the mountains, and that, too, on a land
          shadowing with wings. When looking on the map of North and South
          America it has oftentimes suggested to my own mind the two wings
          of a great bird. No doubt the Prophet Isaiah saw this great
          western continent in vision, and recognized the resemblance to
          the wings of a bird in the general outline of the two branches of
          the continent. On such a land, on the mountains afar off from
          Palestine, an ensign was to be raised. But remember another thing
          in connection with this ensign--See how extensive the
          proclamation was to be--"All ye inhabitants of the world and
          dwellers on the earth, see ye when he lifts up an ensign on the
          mountains." It was to be a work that was to attract the attention
          of all people, unto the ends of the world.
          "But," enquires one, "what do you call an ensign?" Webster gives
          the definition of an ensign or standard--"Something to which the
          people gather; a notice for the people to assemble." In other
          words it is the great standard of the Almighty--the great ensign
          that he is lifting up in the shape of his Church and kingdom, on
          the mountains in the latter days, with all the order and form of
          his ancient system of church government, with its inspired
          Apostles and Prophets and with all the gifts, powers and
          blessings characterizing the Christian Church in ancient days.
          That is an ensign that should attract the people unto the very
          ends of the world.
          With the establishment of this ensign God has not only restored
          the Gospel, but the keys of gathering the people together and
          building up Zion, and he has also restored other keys and
          blessings that were to characterize the great and last
          dispensation of the fullness of times. What are they? The same as
          predicted in the last chapter of the prophecy of Malachi. That
          Prophet, speaking of the great day of burning says, "Behold the
          day shall come that shall burn as an oven, and all the proud and
          they that do wickedly shall become as stubble, and the day that
          cometh shall burn them up saith the Lord of Hosts, that it shall
          leave them neither root nor branch." This is something that has
          never been fulfilled yet. But mark! Before the Lord burns all the
          proud and those who do wickedly, he has told us he would send
          Elijah the Prophet. He says, "Behold, I will send unto you Elijah
          the Prophet, 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." Recollect, this is to be
          just before the day of burning, before the great and notable day
          of the Lord should come.
          Elijah, the Prophet, then, must come from heaven--that same man
          who was translated in a chariot of fire, and who had such power
          while on the earth that he could fight, as it were, all the
          enemies of Israel that came against him; he could call down fire
          from heaven and consume the fifties as they came by companies to
          take him. That same man was to be sent in the last days, before
          the great and notable day of the Lord. What for? To restore a
          very important principle--a principle which will turn the hearts
          of the children to the fathers, and the hearts of the fathers to
          the children. Has that Prophet been sent to the earth, according
          to the prediction? Yes. When did he come, and to whom did he
          come? He came to that despised young man, Joseph Smith. According
          to the testimony of Joseph Smith, the Prophet Elijah stood before
          him, in the presence of Oliver Cowdery, and gave them these keys.
          What is included in this turning of the hearts of the children to
          the fathers and the hearts of the fathers to the children? There
          is included in it a principle for the salvation of the fathers
          that are dead, as well as for the children who are living. You
          have heard, Latter-day Saints, for years and years, that God has
          given keys, by which the living in this Church might do, not only
          the works necessary for their own salvation, but also certain
          works necessary to the salvation of their ancestors as far back
          as they could obtain their genealogies. What can be done by us
          for our fathers who have lived and died during the last seventeen
          hundred years, without hearing the Gospel in its fullness and
          power? Hundreds and thousands, and millions of them were sincere
          and honest, and served the Lord the best they knew; but they
          lived in the midst of apostate Christendom, and never heard the
          Gospel preached by inspired men, neither had they the chance of
          having its ordinances administered to them by men having
          authority from God. Must they be shut out from the kingdom of
          God, and be deprived of the glory, joys and blessings of
          celestial life because of this? No, God is an impartial being,
          and when he sent Elijah the Prophet to confer the keys I have
          referred to upon Joseph Smith, he intended that this people
          should work for the generations of the dead, as well as for the
          generations of the living; that these ordinances which pertain to
          men here in the flesh might be administered in their behalf by
          those of their kindred living in this day and generation. In this
          way the Latter-day Saints will be baptized and receive the
          various ordinances of the Gospel of the Son of God for their
          forefathers, as far as they can trace them; and when we have
          traced them as far back as we can possibly go, the Lord God has
          promised that he will reveal our ancestry back until it shall
          connect with the ancient priesthood, so that there will be no
          link wanting in the great chain of redemption.
          Here then was a restoration in fulfillment of the prediction of
          Malachi, and for this reason Temples are being built. The Temple,
          of which the foundation is laid on this block, is intended for
          that purpose among others. It is not intended for the assembling
          of vast congregations of the Saints, but it is intended to be for
          the administration of sacred and holy ordinances. There will be a
          font for baptism, in its proper place, built according to the
          pattern that God shall give unto his servants. It is intended
          that, in these sacred and holy places, appointed, set apart and
          dedicated by the command of the Almighty, genealogies shall be
          revealed, and that the living shall officiate for the dead, that
          those who have not had the opportunity while in the flesh in past
          generations to obey the Gospel, might have their friends now
          living, officiate for them. This does not destroy their agency,
          for although they laid down their bodies and went to their graves
          in a day of darkness, and they are now mingled with the hosts of
          spirits in the eternal worlds, their agency still continues, and
          that agency gives them power to believe in Jesus Christ there,
          just as well as we can who are here. Those spirits on the other
          side of the veil can repent just the same as we, in the flesh,
          can repent. Faith in God and in his son Jesus Christ, and
          repentance are acts of the mind--mental operations--but when it
          comes to baptism for the remission of sins they cannot perform
          that, we act for them, that having been ordained to be performed
          in the flesh. They can receive the benefit of whatever is done
          for them here, and whatever the Lord God commands his people here
          in the flesh to do for them will be published to them there by
          those holding the everlasting Priesthood of the Son of God. If,
          when the Gospel is preached to them there, they will believe in
          the Lord Jesus Christ, they will receive the benefits of the
          ordinances performed on their behalf here, and they will be
          partakers, with their kindred, of all the blessings of the
          fullness of the Gospel of the Son of God; but if they will not do
          this they will be bound over in chains of darkness until the
          judgment of the great day, when they will be judged according to
          men in the flesh. We are here in the flesh, and the same Gospel
          that condemns the disobedient and the sinner here, will, by the
          same law, condemn those who are on the other side of the veil.
          We have an account of baptism for the dead, as it was
          administered among the ancient Saints. Paul refers to it in his
          epistle to the Corinthians, to prove to them that the
          resurrection was a reality, "else," says he, "what shall they do
          who are baptized for the dead? If the dead rise not at all, why
          then are they baptized for the dead?" It was a strong argument
          that Paul brought forward, and one that the Corinthians well
          understood. It was a practice among them to be baptized for their
          dead, and Paul, knowing that they understood this principle, used
          an argument to show that the dead would have a resurrection, and
          that baptism or immersion in water, a being buried in and the
          coming forth out of the water, was a simile of the resurrection
          from the dead. The same doctrine is taught in one of Peter's
          epistles. About preaching to those who are dead, Peter says that
          "Jesus was put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the
          Spirit, by which also he went and preached to the spirits in
          prison, which sometimes were disobedient, when once the
          long-suffering of God waited in the days of Noah while the ark
          was preparing?" Indeed! Jesus himself go to the dead and preach
          to them? Yes. Go to the old antediluvian spirits, and preach to
          them? Yes, preach to spirits who had lain in prison over two
          thousand years, shut up and deprived of entering into the fulness
          of the kingdom of God because of their disobedience. Jesus went
          and preached to them. "What did he preach?" He did not preach
          eternal damnation, for that would have been no use. He did not go
          and say to them, "You antediluvian spirits, I have come here to
          torment you." He did not declare that "I have opened your prison
          doors to tell you there is no hope for you, your case is past
          recovery, you must be damned to everlasting despair." This was
          not his preaching. He went there to declare glad tidings. When he
          entered the prison of those antediluvians, Peter says he preached
          the Gospel. "For, for this cause was the Gospel preached to them
          that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the
          flesh, and live according to God in the spirit." Yes, the
          inhabitants of the spirit world--far more numerous than those in
          the flesh--must hear the glad tidings of the Gospel of the Son of
          God, that all may be judged by the same Gospel and the same law;
          and if they will receive it be blessed, exalted from their prison
          house, and brought into the presence of the Father and the Son,
          and inherit celestial glory.
          This, therefore, is among the greatest of all the keys that God
          has revealed in the last dispensation--the saving of the
          generations of the dead, as well as the generations of the
          living, inasmuch as they will repent. Shall we stop here? Perhaps
          I have spoken sufficiently long. There are other principles, just
          as important in their nature, that must be restored in the
          latter-days, but I have not time to dwell upon them. I have
          reference now to the restoration of that eternal principle--the
          marriage covenant, which once was on the earth in the days of our
          first parents, the eternal union of husband and wife, according
          to the law of God, in the first pattern of marriage that is given
          to the children of men. That must also be restored, and
          everything in its time and in its season must be restored, in
          order that all things spoken of by the mouth of all the holy
          Prophets since the world began may be fulfilled. But we will
          leave this subject for some future time. There must, however, be
          a restoration of the eternal covenant of marriage, and also of
          that order of marriage which existed among the old Patriarchs,
          before the prophecies can be fulfilled, wherein seven women shall
          take hold of one man, saying, "we will eat our own bread, and
          wear our own apparel, only let us be called by thy name to take
          away our reproach." That must be restored, or the prophecies of
          Isaiah never can be fulfilled. A great many other things might be
          named which must be restored in the dispensation of the fulness
          of times. It is a dispensation to restore all things, it is the
          dispensation of the spirit and power of Elias or Elijah, "to seal
          all things unto the end of all things" preparatory to the coming
          of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
          The wicked as well as the righteous will feel the power of these
          keys. The wicked as well as the righteous must be sealed to that
          end for which they have lived. The wicked, who have disobeyed the
          law of God, must be sealed over unto darkness, until they have
          been punished and beaten with many stripes, until the last
          resurrection, until the last trump shall sound. But the
          righteous, in the flesh and behind the veil, will come forth in
          the first resurrection, but prior to that great event they will
          co-operate in their labors for the consummation of the purposes
          of the Almighty so far as necessary to prepare the way for the
          second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ to reign here, personally,
          on the earth for the space of one thousand years. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 / Orson
          Pratt, December 18, 1870
                           Orson Pratt, December 18, 1870
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER ORSON PRATT,
                    Delivered in the Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                                 December 18, 1870.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          I will read a few passages of Scripture, which will be found in
          the 50th Psalm--
          "The mighty God, even the Lord, hath spoken, and called the earth
          from the rising of the sun to the going down thereof.
          "Out of Zion, the perfection of beauty, God hath shined.
          "Our God shall come, and shall not keep silence--a fire shall
          devour before him, and it shall be very tempestuous round about
          "He shall call to the heavens from above, and to the earth, that
          he may judge his people.
          "Gather my saints together unto me; those that have made a
          covenant with me by sacrifice."
          This congregation, the members of which are generally speaking
          Bible believers, have no doubt in their minds but the ancient
          servants of God were inspired by the gift of the Holy Ghost to
          utter many things concerning the future, to deliver many
          predictions concerning events which should take place among
          mankind down to the latest generations. David, in a peculiar
          manner, was inspired, and composed his psalms by the spirit of
          prophecy; he foresaw, by that spirit that knows all things, some
          of the grand events of the future, pertaining to the inhabitants
          of this world, and the purposes of God in relation to this
          creation. These passages which I have read have reference to some
          of these great events, a portion of which have already, in a
          measure, been fulfilled; but the greater portion remains yet to
          be accomplished. "The mighty God, even the Lord, hath spoken,"
          has literally been fulfilled so far as this present generation is
          concerned. It has been fulfilled also in relation to past
          generations; but it is very evident from the meaning of the
          context, that the speaking of the lord here referred to was a
          work of latter times when God should again speak to the
          inhabitants of the earth; when he should again call upon all
          people, far and near, "from the rising of the sun," as he
          expresses here, "to the going down thereof." To show more fully
          that this was a latter-day work, he speaks or predicts that the
          "Lord our God shall come and not keep silence." This had no
          reference to his first coming; for though he did then come and
          utter forth his doctrine and did not keep silence, yet you will
          see by reading a little further, that the Psalmist had reference
          to another coming of the Son of God, very different in its
          character from his first advent. "Our God shall come and shall
          not keep silence." Now mark, in an especial manner, the following
          sentence, and you will see that it has no reference to his first
          coming--"A fire shall devour before him, and it shall be very
          tempestuous round about him." This was not a characteristic of
          his first coming; there was nothing specially connected with that
          event that would excite the attention of mankind generally. He
          came in a very meek and humble manner; his birth and advent into
          this world were in the most humble position. Born, as it were, in
          a stable, laid down in a manger. Not born in king's palace--not
          born among the great and noble, but in a very obscure manner. He
          grew up from infancy to manhood engaged in the carpenter's
          business. Some thirty years of his life were spent at home with
          his reputed father, and with his mother Mary, dwelling
          comparatively in obscurity, occasionally breaking forth and
          arguing with the wise and the great. Nothing characterizing him
          as the Great Creator of this world, or as its Redeemer, only to
          those who were well acquainted with the predictions of the
          Prophets. But this last coming, or the coming here spoken of by
          the Psalmist, represents him as coming with power--"A fire shall
          devour before him and it shall be very tempestuous round about
          him. He shall call to the heavens from above," says the next
          passage, "and to the earth from beneath." What object had he in
          view in calling upon the heavens above and upon the earth
          beneath? What end had he in view in again speaking and breaking
          the silence of ages, and in giving a revelation to the heavens
          and then to the earth? It was in order to bring about a
          preparatory work before the face of his coming the second time,
          when he should come in flaming fire. A preparation was needed,
          and this preparations is mentioned in part in the last verse
          which I read, which declares that he should call to the heavens
          from above and to the earth from beneath.
          He gives us some insight into the nature of that call. His call
          to his servants was, "Gather ye my Saints together unto me, they
          that have made a covenant with me by sacrifice."
          This seems, then, to be a work preparatory to the coming of the
          Lord in flaming fire. The nature of the fire that will be
          exhibited at his second coming in the clouds of heaven will be
          such that it will consume the wicked and ungodly, and those who
          repent not and who do not sanctify themselves before the Lord.
          Our God in that day will be a consuming fire; the intensity of
          this fire will be so great that the very hills, the Psalmist
          David informs us in another place, "will melt like wax before his
          presence." The Prophet Isaiah, in speaking of the fire or heat
          that would accompany the second advent of the Son of God,
          declares that the mountains shall flow down at his presence. The
          elements that now constitute these rugged mountains which we see
          here on this continent and in all parts of the earth where we
          travel will melt with fervent heat, and will flow down before the
          presence of the Lord. The brightness of this fire will be greater
          than that of the sun in its glory. I mean our temporal, literal
          sun, from which we receive light and heat, as you will find
          recorded in the last verse of the 24th chapter of isaiah, which
          says that "when the Lord of Hosts shall come to reign in Mount
          Zion and in Jerusalem, and before his ancients gloriously, the
          sun shall hide his face in shame and the moon shall be
          confounded." With all the brightness of that luminary which
          lights this creation it will hide its face in shame; and the
          bright luminaries of heaven will be confounded as it were, so
          great will be the glory of his presence--a fire devouring before
          him and all nature feeling the power of the Almighty, which will
          be exerted on that grand occasion.
          Will the wicked be able to endure this intense heat and not be
          consumed? I now have reference to their physical tabernacles,
          their temporal bodies. Hear what prophecy has declared in
          relation to this. Read the last chapter contained in the Old
          Testament; that will answer the question.
          "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,
          that it shall leave them neither root nor branch."
          Notice, now, how completely it will sweep the proud and those who
          do wickedly from the face of this creation. The fire that
          proceeds forth from the presence of God at his second coming
          shall burn as an oven, and shall not only affect the mountains
          and the elements so as to melt them, but it will also consume the
          proud and them that do wickedly from the face of the globe. What
          effect will this intense heat have upon the righteous? No more
          than the heated furnace of Nebuchadnezzar had upon the Hebrews
          who were cast therein; and though it was heated seven times
          hotter than it was wont to be heated and slew those who cast
          their fellows into it, yet they who were thrown into it received
          no harm, not even the smell of fire on their garments. They were
          protected by a miracle, and the fire that slew their enemies was
          their preservation. So likewise when the Son of God shall burn up
          the wicked and consume their bodies to ashes, both root and
          branch, leaving no remnants of them among all people, nations and
          tongues, the righteous will be prepared to enter into the midst
          of this flaming fire without receiving any harm; indeed they will
          be caught up into the very presence of God, and they will be
          surrounded with a pillar of fire as Moses was when he came down
          from Mount Sinai, only to a far greater extent; but it will have
          no power over them, in fact it will be their protection and
          salvation, their glory, happiness and joy. To prepare the people
          for that great day it is necessary that the Saints should be
          gathered together, as predicted in the 5th verse, when he should
          give this great and grand revelation in the last days, when the
          mighty God, even the Lord, shall speak. He will call to the
          heavens to assist in the great latter-day work; and all the
          angels and the heavenly host, who do his bidding, will go forth
          as swift messengers to execute his decrees and fulfil his
          purposes in bringing about this grand gathering of his elect from
          the four quarters of the earth. Who will they be? Those who have
          made a covenant with him by sacrifice. What kind of a sacrifice?
          The sacrifice of every earthly thing required, their native
          countries, their fathers and mothers, for in many instances those
          who obey the Gospel are compelled to sever the nearest earthly
          ties--parents from their children, children from their parents
          and kindred from their kin, in order that they may come forth and
          be gathered into one grand body preparatory to the coming of the
          Son of God in flaming fire.
          There are many people who have believed that the coming of our
          Lord was near at hand. We might refer to many persons by name who
          have even set times for his coming--certain particular days,
          months and years in which the Lord would be revealed from heaven.
          But they have entirely overlooked the prophecies of the great
          preparatory work for his coming. If they had read closely, and
          instead of studying for dates had carefully looked for the great
          purposes to be fulfilled before he comes they would have known
          that their predictions were false. There is to be a grand
          gathering of all his people from the four quarters of the earth
          into one body, one family as it were; one people consolidated in
          one region of country, before he shall come.
          Let me refer to this great gathering of the Saints from every
          land and nation; we find it predicted in various portions of the
          prophetic writings. I will first refer you to the prediction
          recorded, if I recollect aright, in the 43d chapter of Isaiah.
          There is a prediction that before the great day of rest the Lord
          will again speak and will say to the north give up, to the south
          keep not back! Bring my sons from afar and my daughters from the
          ends of the earth--the same thing that David has reference to.
          This is not a work to be accomplished by the wisdom of man or by
          a combination of the wisest men that are uninspired, among the
          nations; but the Lord is to speak, and will say to the north give
          up. A new revelation is to be given: he will say to the south
          keep not back, and he will command that his sons and his
          daughters be brought from the ends of the earth.
          Has any such thing happened in our days? Has the mighty God, even
          the Lord, spoken in our days? Yes, and connected with this
          proclamation we are informed that the elect of God are to be
          gathered from the four winds of heaven; and we have been called
          upon to perform this work. How much have we accomplished during
          the forty years that have intervened since the Lord spoke? In the
          year 1827, '28, '29 and '30 the Lord spoke and gave many
          revelations, among which was this record called the Book of
          Mormon, unfolding to us not only the everlasting Gospel in all
          its plainness, simplicity and ancient purity, as it was taught to
          the inhabitants of this continent eighteen hundred years ago; but
          also many sacred predictions relating to the great work which God
          would accomplish when he should bring this record forth in the
          latter days. This book was translated by a mighty Prophet who was
          inspired of God for the purpose; and since it came forth--in the
          short space of forty years--it has been published in many of the
          languages of the earth. It has gone forth in the German, Italian,
          French, Welsh and Scandinavian languages, and also in the tongue
          spoken by the Sandwich Islanders; and it has been proclaimed, as
          it were, on the housetops, in the streets and highways, upon the
          hills and mountains and in all public places, so far as the
          Missionaries and Elders of this Church could find access and
          liberty to proclaim it; and wherever the people have repented and
          turned from their sins and have desired to receive the
          everlasting Gospel, they have continued to gather together in
          one. His gathering has been going on for nearly forty years,
          until the effects can now be seen in this Territory, by any
          person who will travel through it, in the towns and cities which
          have been built, the settlements which have been formed, the
          meeting-houses and school-houses and public halls that have been
          erected; and in the fencing of farms, and the opening of water
          canals an ditches for irrigating the soul. I say those who will
          travel through this Territory may see some of the effects of the
          gathering out of the Saints who have made a covenant with the
          Lord by sacrifice. If we had gathered together into a country
          that was well timbered, where we could go out and get a load of
          fence poles or firewood before breakfast; if we had settled in a
          country that was not, comparatively a desert, and that was
          blessed with the rains of heaven, we could no doubt have
          accomplished far more than we now see. But the Lord purposely led
          us into this desert to fulfil prophecy. A great many people,
          perhaps, reflect upon and wonder at our coming into a sterile,
          barren district of country, inhabited by hostile savages, and
          which, to all natural appearance, would not sustain a farming or
          agricultural population. But the Lord brought us into a country
          of this description in order that he might fulfil prophecies that
          must come to pass before "our God shall come in flaming fire."
          In proof of this let me refer you to the nature of the country,
          the redemption of the desert and so forth, that is to take place
          before the Lord comes. I will refer you now to some of the
          sayings of the Prophet Isaiah. In the last two verses of his 34th
          chapter he says:
          "Seek ye out of the book of the Lord, and read; no one of these
          shall fail, none shall want her mate; for my mouth it hath
          commanded, and his spirit it hath gathered them.
          "And he hath cast the lot for them, and his hand hath divided it
          unto them by line; they shall possess it for ever, from
          generation to generation shall they dwell therein."
          In the 35th chapter, first and second verse, you will find these
          "The wilderness and the solitary place shall be glad for them;
          and the desert shall rejoice, and blossom as the rose.
          "It shall blossom abundantly, and rejoice even with joy and
          singing; the glory of Lebanon shall be given unto it, the
          excellency of Carmel and Sharon; they shall see the glory of the
          Lord, and the excellency of our God."
          Notice now that the Lord, by his Spirit, is to have a great
          gathering in the latter days of his people, and we are advised to
          seek out of the book of the Lord and learn of this gathering, and
          how his Saints should inhabit the land. It should be divided unto
          them by lot, the same as many people received their inheritances
          when they came into this desert. They cast lots, and drew their
          lots and inheritances. "And the wilderness and the solitary
          places shall be glad for them." If you can find a country that
          answers better the description here given anywhere in the four
          quarters of the earth, I should like to know it. When we came
          here, the country to all natural appearance was so barren that it
          seemed impossible to locate a people upon it. But you see what we
          have accomplished. Not by our own wisdom nor by our own strength,
          but by being gathered by the voice of the Lord and by his
          commandment, and being guided and directed by the spirit of
          After we are gathered, the desert is to rejoice and blossom as
          the rose. How often I have thought of this in the spring time,
          when all of this city, covering some four, or perhaps five square
          miles with orchards and gardens, is in bloom! Then is the time to
          realize how literally this prophecy has been fulfilled. Every one
          knows that fruitful as it now is, when we came here it was called
          a desert. If you do not believe me, go to the old maps, and you
          will find this section of the country laid down as "The Great
          American Desert." That is the name that was given to it then.
          People, when banded together in a numerous company, and well
          armed, would hardly venture to pass through this desert country,
          it was so unpropitious and forbidding, the rains of heaven never
          having been, apparently, shed forth upon it. When we came we
          could dig down some eighteen inches or two feet, and in other
          places there was no moisture at all, and it looked as though
          there never had been any rain here. But "the wilderness and the
          solitary place shall be made glad for them, and the desert shall
          blossom abundantly, even with joy and singing."
          "But," says one, "perhaps this had reference to some other
          period, and not to the preparatory work for the coming of the
          Lord." Let us read a few verses further in this 35th chapter of
          Isaiah's prophecies. The third and fourth verses read:
          "Strengthen ye the weak hands, and confirm the feeble knees.
          "Say to them that are of a fearful heart, Be strong, fear not;
          behold, your God will come with vengeance, even God with a
          recompense; he will come and save you."
          Now notice, this is not the first coming. He did not come with
          vengeance then; he came to be spit upon, to be meek and lowly, to
          be ridiculed by the mob if they felt disposed, and finally to be
          lifted up upon the cross and crucified for the sins of the world.
          But the people who are to be gathered together, and for whom the
          desert is to rejoice, are called upon not to fear--"Don't be
          faint-hearted, don't be discouraged." Says the Prophet, "Be
          strong, fear not, for behold your God will come with vengeance;
          he will come with a recompence and he will save you," that is,
          you who are in the desert. Then there will be splendid miracles
          wrought again, as in ancient days. Then the eyes of the blind are
          to be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped; then
          "shall the lame man leap as an hart, and the tongue of the dumb
          shall sing, for in the wilderness shall waters break out and
          streams in the desert."
          Latter-day Saints, and what I ask of you I might ask of the whole
          people of the Territory, have you seen a fulfilment of this
          saying of the Prophet Isaiah since you have been located here in
          the desert? Has there been any such things as springs breaking
          out in the wilderness and rivulets of water in the desert? Yes,
          not in one or two isolated instances, but in almost every
          settlement throughout this Territory. Many places in which, in
          early days, there was not water enough for a settlement of twenty
          individuals, now support their hundreds. In what way? By the
          great increase of water. How was Salt Lake when we first came
          here? We, that is, a few of the Pioneers, went over in July 1847,
          to the banks of Salt Lake, to what is called the Black Rock. Some
          of us went in bathing, and we could walk out to Black Rock, and
          look down on the water on each side. But how is it now? The
          waters are some ten feet above that land that we trod upon then.
          What is the matter? Ought not the waters of the Lake to have
          decreased, seeing that the waters of the various streams that,
          before our arrival, emptied their contents into it, are turned
          broadcast over thousands and tens of thousands of acres of land?
          Certainly one would think so, for when all this water is turned
          on the land it evaporates instead of going to increase the volume
          of the Great Salt Lake; but instead of diminishing, the waters of
          the Lake have risen some ten or twelve feet above the surface as
          it existed in 1847, when I first saw it. Hence streams have
          broken out in the desert, and waters in the wilderness, as it is
          prophecied, not only in this chapter, but also in various
          portions of the Psalms.
          When speaking of the great day of the coming of the Lord, how
          often do Isaiah and David speak of the desert, and the waters,
          rivers and springs that should break out to water the barren,
          thirsty land! "The parched ground shall become a pool, and the
          thirsty land springs of water."
          We might go on and speak about the highway that the Lord would
          have there, that has also been thrown up since we came here. It
          is even called a highway by the world, that know nothing of these
          prophecies. I believe I will say, as I pass along, something
          about the highway, for the same Prophet that predicts about this
          alteration in the desert, also says there shall be a highway
          there. Let me refer to another prophecy about this highway, by
          the same Prophet. It reads thus: "And the Lord shall proclaim to
          the ends of the world, say ye to the daughter of Zion, beheld thy
          salvation cometh; behold his reward is with him and his work
          before him." But in the sentence preceding this the Prophet says:
          "Cast up, cast up a highway, gather out the stones, prepare ye
          the way of the people, lift up a standard for the people." Then
          come in the words I have quoted. How was the great highway that
          crosses this continent constructed? You ought to know, for you
          were the ones who constructed it through these mountains; you
          were the ones who built some four hundred miles of this railroad,
          you therefore know how it was done. Did you gather out the
          stones? Did you prepare the level places for this great highway
          that the Prophet had predicted? Did you cast it up where there
          were hollows? Did you fill up the hollows and gather out the
          stones in order to make it level and convenient? O, yes. Did you
          make any tunnels and gateways? I don't suppose that the ancient
          Prophet knew what a tunnel was, hence he says, "go through, go
          through the gates, cast up cast up a highway." No doubt he saw in
          vision how the railroad looked, saw the carriages driving along
          with almost lightning speed, darting into the mountains on one
          side, and by and by saw them coming out on the other side; and he
          did not know how to represent it any better than to speak of it
          as a gate--"go through, go through the gates," &c. "Prepare ye
          the way of the people, cast up, cast up a highway, and lift up a
          standard for the people;" and then come in those notable words,
          showing that it was a highway to be cast up before the coming of
          the Son of God. "The Lord has proclaimed to the ends of the
          world, say ye to the daughters of Zion, behold thy salvation
          cometh, behold his reward is with him and his work before him."
          Don't you see from these passages that this is a latter-day work?
          That there is a proclamation connected with the casting up of
          this highway? And that it is a proclamation which has reference
          to every nation, kindred, tongue and people? God was to speak,
          deliver a message, send forth his servants as missionaries; they
          were to publish that message to the ends of the world, and to
          declare to all people that the Lord was to come, "behold thy
          salvation cometh, and his reward is with him, and his work is
          before him." The Prophet further says "They shall call them," for
          whom this highway was built that their way might be prepared, and
          for whom a standard should be raise, "the redeemed of the Lord, a
          holy people; they shall be called, sought out, a city not
          forsaken," Oh, how different from old Jerusalem, a city that has
          been forsaken! It is almost two thousand years since the Lord
          forsook it, and the Jews have been forsaken, and scattered among
          all people.
          But when the Lord lifts up this highway, gathers out the stones,
          sends forth his proclamation and gathers out his Saints who have
          made a covenant by sacrifice, they will build a city, one that
          shall be sought out. Old Jerusalem was not sought out; it was
          built before the Jews went to inhabit it. It was one of the early
          cities of the ancient nations of Canaan. But this latter-day
          city, that is called Zion, is to be sought out, and the people
          that were to search it out were to be a very good people. "They
          shall call them the Redeemed of the Lord; they shall be called,
          sought out, a city not forsaken."
          Now, with all the difficulties we have encountered here, and with
          all the imaginations of our enemies in regard to us, I humbly
          trust and hope that the time has come for this prophecy to be
          literally fulfilled; when this city of the Lord, which is built
          up according to this prophecy will not be forsaken. I hope that
          the Lord our God will protect his people and guarantee to them
          the rights already guaranteed by the Constitution of our Country
          to every religious denomination in the land.
          There are some other prophecies about the gathering of the
          Saints. I think I will read one that has reference to our coming
          to this place. You will find it in the 107th Psalm, and it is
          very applicable to the journey which we performed when we came
          "O give thank unto the Lord, for He is good: for His mercy
          endureth for ever. 
          "Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom He hath redeemed from
          the hand of the enemy;
          "And gathered them out of the lands, from the east, and from the
          west, from the north, and from the south.
          "They wandered in the wilderness in a solitary way; they found no
          city to dwell in.
          "Hungry and thirsty their soul fainted in them.
          "Then they cried unto the Lord in their trouble, and He delivered
          them out of their distresses.
          "And he led them forth by the right way, that they might go to a
          city of habitation.
          "Oh that men would praise the Lord for His goodness, and for His
          wonderful works to the children of men."
          This has been fulfilled since the day that David uttered it. "Let
          the redeemed of the Lord say so!" What redeemed of the Lord? Not
          those who were gathered out of the land of Egypt before the days
          of David, but those who are gathered out of all lands, says the
          Prophet, "from the East and from the West, and from the North and
          from the South." From the four points of the compass, from every
          nation and every clime. "Let them praise the Lord and give thanks
          to his holy name, because of his mercy and his goodness to them."
          They were not to find it at first all to their satisfaction;
          their journey was to be in a solitary way; they were to find no
          city to dwell in. I can bear testimony to this, for I was among
          the pioneers, and when we came here we didn't find any great
          city, with houses already built to go into. We had to live in our
          wagons, and had to build a little fort to defend ourselves
          against the half-naked Indians. And thus we located in the midst
          of a dried-up and thirsty land--a desert; and here in this
          region, where the solitude was so great that it was only broken
          by the yells of savages and the howling of wild beasts, we had to
          go to work to prepare a city for habitation. We had some
          afflictions--hunger and thirst; "and their souls fainted within
          them," says David, "but they cried unto the Lord in their
          afflictions, and he had mercy upon them and delivered them out of
          their distresses."
          In the 31st and 32d verses the Psalmist says--
          "Oh that men would praise the Lord for his goodness, and for his
          wonderful works to the children of men!"
          "Let them exalt him also in the congregation of the people, and
          praise him in the assembly of the Elders."
          Why should they be so glad to praise him? He tells us in the next
          "He turneth rivers into a wilderness, and the water springs into
          dry ground."
          "A fruitful land into barrenness, for the wickedness of them that
          dwell therein."
          This has reference to what will take place in the fruitful lands
          of the Gentiles by and by; but he is going to reverse this so far
          as his people in the desert are concerned, for he turns the
          wilderness into standing water, and the dry ground into water
          springs; and "there he makes the hungry to dwell that they may
          prepare a city for habitations." Just as you did, brethren and
          sisters. "And sow the fields and plant vineyards, which may yield
          fruits of increase. He blesseth them also so that they are
          multiplied greatly, and suffereth not their cattle to decrease."
          Has this been fulfilled? I have been away a great many years, and
          I do not know so much about it as some of these old farmers; but
          I think if we will traverse this Territory, we will find that our
          cattle have not decreased since we came here.
          There is another prophecy in this Psalm to which I will call your
          attention, connected with this people that was to be gathered out
          from all lands into a wilderness and solitary place. The Prophet
          says--"yet setteth he the poor on high from affliction and maketh
          him families like a flock." Now, is that true? I would ask some
          of my brethren here, as I have been gone so much, is there any
          man here who has families like a flock? If you have, you are
          fulfilling this prophecy of the Psalmist. I think I herd of and
          saw in my travels in the Territory quite a number of such men,
          quite poor men, just such men as David refers to. What wonderful
          things take place in the last days, in order to fulfil prophecy!
          "The righteous shall see it and rejoice, and all iniquity shall
          stop her mouth." This latter clause has yet to be fulfilled, it
          has not yet come to pass. "Whoso is wise, and will observe these
          things, even they shall understand the loving kindness of the
          Lord." Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 /
          Brigham Young, June 9, 1872
                             Brigham Young, June 9, 1872
                         REMARKS BY PRESIDENT BRIGHAM YOUNG,
                Delivered in the Bowery, Brigham City, June 9, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                          MODERN CHRISTIANITY--PRAYER, ETC.
          If I can speak so as to be heard, I will talk to the brethren and
          sisters a few minutes. It requires stillness and close attention
          to hear those who speak in this bowery. A great deal has been
          said with regard to the salvation of the human family. I might
          say that more should be done, then we could talk less. Of
          necessity, through the weakness of human nature, a great deal has
          to be said; but if the people could understand the principles of
          life and salvation, and would act accordingly, it would require a
          great deal less talking. Words are wind, they go into the ear and
          are forgotten; still there is a certain portion that will be
          retained by a few, and they will be profited thereby. The work in
          which we are engaged is not magnified in the least by talking
          about it; it is only in the weak capacity of man that these
          principles become exalted through the hearing of the ear. The
          principles we preach are the gospel of life and salvation; and we
          have entered into covenant with God to observe the rules,
          ordinances and laws pertaining to this life and salvation. The
          question arises, Do we perform this labor, in keeping the sayings
          of the Lord as strictly as we should? No, we do not.
          Suppose that we name a few of the rules and regulations by which
          we are to live. If I attempt to classify them, perhaps I shall
          get them imperfectly in the science of the law of God. But first,
          to me, after hearing and believing that there is such a character
          as the Savior of mankind, who has acted his part well and
          performed his duty in purchasing redemption for the human family,
          and is now pleading for his brethren, I at once inquired what he
          requires of me. This is the inquiry of my reflections, and I
          learn that faith is the starting point. If I believe sincerely
          and honestly, I must obey, and the next step in the plan of
          salvation, as laid down by Jesus and his disciples, is for me to
          be baptized for the remission of my sins. To the Christian world,
          to the heathen world and the infidel world, we can say that all
          things are spiritual, all things are temporal, all things are
          natural; all things are natural, all things are temporal, all
          things are spiritual; and there is not that being on the earth,
          and never was, that I have any knowledge of, that can divide
          them. But in the act, and in the performance of the duty of those
          who believe in this plan of salvation, we can define our faith in
          our secret closet by exercising faith in the name of Jesus, and
          seeking unto the Father secretly in our hearts. Here we find a
          difference and a distinction between this and the actual
          performance of rising up from my seat, going down into the water
          and being baptized for the remission of my sins. Still the work
          is the same, consequently it is spiritual, it is temporal, it is
          natural; it is natural, it is temporal, it is spiritual.
          Well, now, this is the work that we have before us; not that I am
          going to have time to preach on these points, or delineate them
          to any length; but these are the facts. If we believe, we obey,
          we are baptized for the remission of our sins, which is the
          commencement of the labor, the outward performance and
          manifestation of obedience to God, through faith in the name of
          his son Jesus Christ. Then comes the blessing by the imposition
          of hands upon the head of the individual who has received baptism
          for the remission of sins, and he receives the Holy Ghost. This
          is the blessing and the consolation of believing in the truth;
          and this stimulates the individual to still exercise faith and to
          continue in obedience to the commandments of the Lord, to pray
          always, without ceasing, and in everything to give thanks; his
          heart uplifted to God, day by day, from morning until evening,
          and from evening until morning, for the blessings of heaven to be
          with him, for his feet to be guided in the path of rectitude, and
          that he may be preserved from speaking, thinking, and doing in
          anywise, that which is wrong. This is simple and plain, and can
          be understood by all classes of the children of men who are
          endowed with the common sense and ability that are given to man.
          The duty of the Latter-day Saints is to pray without ceasing, and
          in everything to give thanks, to acknowledge the hand of the Lord
          in all things, and to be subject to his requirements. We, as
          Latter-day Saints, can say that our duty is laid before us. We
          can read it, not only in the faith and feelings of the
          individuals of the community; but it is actually printed, it lies
          upon the pages of our history, and we can read at our pleasure.
          We meet together for the express purpose of having somebody or
          other tell us that which we know and have known all the time. We
          have read it over and over; we have thought of it and meditated
          upon it, yet we meet together and hear our brethren speak to
          force these things into the affections of the people; and if we
          can persuade them to hearken to every requirement of heaven, then
          we are not under the necessity of talking so much. We are freed
          from this task and toil.
          What is our duty: To pray. Pray always? Yes. To pray in our
          families? Yes. Let no man be in a hurry, but what he can get up
          in a morning and pray with his family before he permits himself
          to partake of refreshment. Let every man and every woman call
          upon the name of the Lord, and that too, from a pure heart, while
          they are at work as well as in their closet; while they are in
          public as well as while they are in private, asking the Father in
          the name of Jesus, to bless them, and to preserve and guide in,
          and to teach them, the way of life and salvation, and to enable
          them so to live that they will obtain this eternal salvation that
          we are after.
          Now, besides being our duty to pray, it is our duty to live in
          peace one with another. it is also our duty to love the Gospel
          and the spirit of the Gospel, so that we can become one in the
          Lord, not out of him, that our faith, our affections for the
          truth, the kingdom of heaven, our acts, all our labor will be
          concentrated in the salvation of the children of men, and the
          establishment of the kingdom of God on the earth. This is
          co-operation on a very large scale. This is the work of
          redemption that is entered into by the Latter-day Saints.
          Unitedly we perform these duties, we stand, we endure, we
          increase and multiply, awe strengthen and spread abroad, and
          shall continue so to do until the kingdoms of this world are the
          kingdoms of our God and his Christ.
          We can read that these are our duties in the Bible, Book of
          Mormon, Book of Doctrine and Covenants, and many other sayings
          that we have from the Elders, which are just as true as any in
          these three books; and all combined are a way-mark pointing us to
          life and salvation, and we can read for ourselves.
          We might say, if one man has a difficulty with another, let him,
          in the first place, go to him privately and talk with him, and
          see if he will be reconciled, or take another, and so on. We can
          say of a truth, that if there be hard feelings in the midst of
          the Saints, they should be eradicated from our bosoms by taking
          the proper course to enjoy the Spirit of the Lord instead of the
          spirit of animosity and strife. All these things you can define
          and enlarge upon at your leisure. It is our duty to observe our
          sacraments, to observe our fast-days and offerings; it is our
          duty to observe our tithing and to pay them. There is a great
          deal said by our enemies with regard to the members of this
          Church paying tithing. We are as free from taxation as any other
          church on the earth, right or wrong, true or untrue, and we pay
          as little as any other people, and if my tithing is required let
          it be paid. That is the way to get rich. We have entered upon a
          great system of co-operation for the building up of the kingdom
          of God, and, when it is built up, it is ours, we own it. If we
          are Saints of God, and sanctify ourselves through his Gospel,
          then we shall be worthy to possess all things. The kingdoms of
          this world will be ours, all will be ours, the heavens and the
          earth, and the fulness thereof will be ours, and we are the
          Lord's, we are his servants, and we possess all things in common
          with him. That word "all," perhaps, conveys too much to the minds
          of some; but that is no matter. With regard to the Latter-day
          Saints, in the performance of their duties, we could tell them
          what to do to be saved. The path is as clear and plain as this
          highway is here for the travel of teams and the people. But when
          we inquire about the character of our Father, there are some
          things connected therewith that men do not understand, neither
          should they understand them. It is not in accordance with the
          mind and will of him we worship as our God, that the inhabitants
          of the earth, in their weak and wicked capacity, and in
          ignorance, should understand them. It was mentioned here
          yesterday, and is frequently mentioned by myself and others, that
          those who profess Christianity are in the dark, and why? They
          mystify everything; they read the Bible as a sealed book, and
          they believe it when it is closed and laid upon the shelf. They
          do not know how to read it any other way, they do not know how to
          believe it any other way, and it is right and reasonable that
          they should not; but as for detailing the reasons why this is so,
          we have not time. Suffice it to say, all things are done in the
          wisdom of him who knows all things. It is not right, I will say,
          for people to know the truth and live in disobedience to it; it
          is not right for them to understand the ways and providences of
          God as they are dealt out to the people on the earth, when they
          live and are determined to live in violation of every commandment
          and law of God; and because they do so live, ignorance covers
          them as with a mantle, shuts out the light of truth from them,
          and keeps them in darkness; and if the light were to shine upon
          them, as it does now and as it did in the days of the Apostles,
          would they receive it? No, they would not. Light has come into
          the world, but the wicked choose darkness rather than light? Why?
          It was told in days of old that their deeds were evil. That is
          the fact to-day--"they choose darkness rather than light, because
          their deeds are evil," and their hearts are fully set in them to
          do evil; and here I might venture to say to all the inhabitants
          of the earth, high and low, rich and poor, to the king upon his
          throne and to the beggar in the street, if they had the truth and
          loved it they would rejoice in it. But they will not receive it.
          Is not this lamentable? It is; but we can not help it. We can
          declare the truth to the people, but we can not force them to
          receive it. If the inhabitants of the earth were honest, they
          would receive the truth; and there is not a man or woman now
          living on the earth, or ever did live on it, who would speak,
          write, think or act against the Gospel of life and salvation as
          they do, were they not in darkness; but they are kept in
          ignorance through their own wickedness and unbelief, and they
          nourish and cherish the spirit of evil, and that prompts them to
          reject the words of life. We can say this to all the human
          family; but to the Latter-day Saints, you believe, now obey; and
          if we obey, all will be right, and we shall gain the salvation
          that we are after.
          I am happy, brethren, for the privilege of being in your midst. I
          frequently shake hands with my brethren and sisters, and they
          rejoice, they congratulate me on my freedom. I have been free. I
          do not feel, and have not felt, that I was bound in the least.
          The question can be asked, Were you not a prisoner for some five
          months through the indiscreet, unmanly, inhuman, disloyal and
          rebellious decision and doings of our officials? It seemed so; it
          had the appearance that I was confined, and had not my liberty,
          through the ill-treatment, mistaken ideas, selfishness and
          prejudice of the ungodly. But I did not feel that I was in
          prison, or that I was confined. I will say to the Latter-day
          Saints, my heart has rejoiced for the privilege of resting. I
          have rejoiced for the privilege, as it was observed here, by
          Elder Hyde, yesterday, of entering into my closet, that is, I
          entered into my closet just as he did into his. He kept himself
          where he had a mind to, and I did the same. He entered his
          closet, and I into mine, or into my house, and there I abode, and
          continued to abide, for a time, and was thankful for the
          privilege. Now I have the privilege of going here and there
          without having anyone to accompany me only those I invite. I was
          very happy for the privilege of being quiet, still and retired in
          my own house last winter. My companion, not my sleeping
          companion, but my companion in tribulation and confinement, for
          the gentleman who was with me, I really think was, in his
          feelings, confined more than I, a great deal, and felt so, would
          urge me to ride, or to go to this party or that, or to the
          theater. I kindly declined and thanked him for his kindness in
          offering to accompany me; and I would say, "you go and enjoy
          yourself, and I will stay here," and I got him to go
          I say this with regard to myself, that you may know my own
          feelings. But I can say still more--the Lord Almighty has guided
          and directed the ship of state in our behalf and for the
          deliverance and protection of the innocent and the honest.
          Victory has perched on Zion's banner. We have obtained that that
          we could not have obtained had it not been for the persecuting
          spirit that has followed on the heels of the Latter-day Saints
          within the two years that are past. How could we, without this
          very conduct of our enemies, have ever approached the highest
          tribunal in this government to have it give its decision with
          regard to right and wrong, law, legality, that that is equitable
          and according to the spirit of our government, and that which is
          contrary thereto? How could we have approached that body? How
          could we have had our cause before it, had it not been for the
          acts of our enemies, with which they designed to bring us to
          death? For there is no question that, in their own feelings, the
          knot was tied around the neck of your humble servant, and he hung
          dangling in the air. But God designed this for good, for the
          deliverance of the humble and the meek. What have we to say? We
          acknowledge his hand in these things as well as everything else,
          and say, God be praised!
          I will not occupy more time, I want others to talk. I will close
          by saying a few things to you with regard to your duties. Attend
          to your meetings, attend to your prayers; attend to your daily
          labor. Be honest and upright with one another; be punctual, keep
          your word, preserve yourselves inviolate in all things. Be
          chaste, preserve your faith before God, do not demoralize or
          prostitute yourselves, and all will be right. I can say that when
          a man comes along and turns his cattle into his neighbor's field
          without liberty, he prostitutes his own feelings--his virtue,
          truthfulness, honesty and uprightness before God and angels. If
          we will preserve ourselves in purity, in the integrity of our
          hearts, it will be well with us.
          We have quite a number of the people present from the settlements
          of this county generally, and from Cache Valley. I see you have a
          little railroad here, and the people are building it. I am
          thankful to see this enterprise. Go ahead, brethren, build this
          road and own it, and do what you please with it. It will be a
          fine piece of improvement; it will open up this northern country,
          and give you facilities that you could not otherwise enjoy here.
          How beautiful that is! How comfortable, yes, that is the
          word--how comfortable and easy it is for me to get into a coach,
          or a good carriage, and run over this railroad, from Salt Lake
          City to this place in less than three hours, as we did yesterday
          morning. In less than three hours from the time we left the depot
          of the Utah Central in Salt Lake City, we were in this bowery;
          and, this evening, we expect, in less than three hours from the
          time we leave this bowery, to be in Salt Lake City--a distance of
          over sixty miles. It is very comfortable, very consoling! And if
          we can see these things as they are, they open up a field for the
          contemplation of the wise to improve upon, that we may shape our
          lives for the benefit of ourselves and the human family and to
          promote truth and righteousness upon the earth.
          God bless you. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 / Orson
          Pratt, February 4, 1872
                            Orson Pratt, February 4, 1872
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER ORSON PRATT,
                    Delivered in the Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                         Sunday Afternoon, February 4, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          I will call the attention of this congregation to a portion of
          prophecy which will be found in the 44th and 45th verses of the
          2nd chapter of the book of Daniel:
          And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a
          kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall
          not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and
          consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever.
          Forasmuch as thou sawest that the stone was cut out of the
          mountain without hands, and that it brake in pieces the iron, the
          brass, the clay, the silver, and the gold; the great God hath
          made known to the king what shall come to pass hereafter; and the
          dream is certain, and the interpretation thereof sure.
          I have often, in my remarks in former times, addressed the
          Latter-day Saints upon these passages; but as there are some
          strangers in our midst who have not, perhaps, heard our views in
          regard to setting up the kingdom of God in the latter time, it
          may not be amiss for us to set forth before them the views of the
          Latter-day Saints in regard to this prediction. We have, during
          the last six thousand years, or nearly so, had a very great
          variety of human governments established on the earth.
          Governments began to be established in the days of our first
          parents. As they lived to be very aged--or almost a thousand
          years before they were taken from the earth, they saw their
          children multiplying around them in vast numbers, and governments
          began to be established. Among those governments, however, was
          maintained also the government of God--a patriarchal government,
          that continued with the righteous from the days of Adam down till
          the days of Enoch, and for a short period after his days. This
          government was patriarchal in its nature, or, in other words,
          directed and dictated by the Creator of man--the great Law-giver.
          He directed and counseled his servants, and they obeyed his
          counsels. In other words, a divine government existed on the
          earth in those ancient times; but at length, about the period of
          the death of Adam, or a little after, human governments rooted
          out of the earth the government of God, mankind apostatized from
          the great principles which were revealed from heaven, and all
          flesh corrupted its way in the sight of God to that degree, that
          the just anger of their Creator was kindled against them, and he
          decreed that they should be swept off from the face of the earth
          by a flood of waters. Again, after this great destruction, a
          divine government was organized on the earth, Noah being the
          great Patriarch, Revelator, and Prophet, to whom was given laws
          and institutions for the government of his posterity. This order,
          however, continued only for a short period of time, and human
          governments again prevailed. The Lord sought, from time to time,
          in the midst of these human governments, to select a people who
          would give heed to his law and be governed by him as the Being
          who had the right to govern; inasmuch as he had created the earth
          and the inhabitants thereof, he had the right to give laws and
          institutions for the government of man. But few, indeed, there
          were that gave heed to these divine institutions. The Lord, at
          length, called out a people from Egypt, and took upon himself the
          power, and gave revelation to them in a very conspicuous and
          wonderful manner. He came down in the sight of some twenty-five
          hundred thousand people, and gave them laws; they heard those
          laws proclaimed from Mount Sinai. Male and female, old and young,
          throughout all the hosts of Israel, had the opportunity of
          learning something in regard to the laws of heaven. However, they
          quickly corrupted themselves in the sight of God, and while Moses
          yet tarried in the mount, not being satisfied with the laws which
          God had revealed, and which he intended to give unto them, they
          devised institutions of their own. They gathered together their
          jewels, their gold and their silver, and so forth, and began to
          make gods of their own for the people to worship, among which we
          have an account of two calves that were made by Aaron, while
          Moses was yet in the mount talking with the Lord and receiving
          oracles and laws for the government of that people. Having
          received these laws, written upon tables of stone, Moses departed
          out of the mount, by the command of God, to go down and visit the
          people. The Lord had told Moses that they had corrupted
          themselves, and he went down, being filled with the justice of
          the Almighty, or, as it is written, his anger was kindled against
          the people, which I interpret as a spirit of justice. He found
          that they had made gods and bowed down before them, and
          said--"these be the gods, oh Israel, that brought thee up out of
          the land of Egypt." However, a revolution was performed in the
          midst of the people, and Moses succeeded in bringing most of the
          people to their senses again, that they were willing to receive
          the divine law. Their sin however was so great, that the first
          law which the Lord intended to bestow upon them, namely, the law
          of the Gospel, was withheld.
          Now here is something, perhaps, that may be a little new to
          strangers, to hear the Latter-day Saints say that the Gospel of
          the Son of God was withheld from the people of Israel. But in
          proof of my assertion, I will refer you to Paul's declaration to
          the Hebrews, wherein he says--"The Gospel was preached unto them
          in the wilderness as well as unto us; but the word preached did
          not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard
          it." From this we learn that the children of Israel, at first,
          were not place under the law of carnal commandments. They were
          not placed under the law which exacts an eye for an eye, a tooth
          for a tooth, and if a man smite thee on the cheek, turn and
          resist the evil. This was not the first law that was given to
          Israel. The law of the Gospel, the same Gospel that was taught in
          the days of Christ, was given to them first, with this one
          exception--the children of Israel were required to look forward
          to the coming of their Messiah, and to the atonement that he
          should make upon the cross, that they, by faith in the future
          atonement that was to be made, might be partakers of the
          blessings of the Gospel. But having hardened their hearts against
          Moses and against God, the Lord determined to take away this
          higher law from the midst of the children of Israel, and give
          them a law which is termed by the Apostles the law of carnal
          commandments--a law by which they should not live. They could
          have lived by the law of the Gospel; they could have entered into
          the Lord's rest by that law, even into the fulness of his glory;
          but having transgressed the higher law, God gave them an inferior
          law adapted to their carnal capacity. This law is mentioned in
          the 20th chapter of Ezekiel, in these words--"Wherefore I gave
          them also statutes that were not good, and judgments whereby they
          should not live." Why is it that the Lord gave to Israel
          statutes, and judgments, and laws that were not good? Because
          they were incapable of receiving anything greater or higher. He
          gave them this law as a schoolmaster, to school them and bring
          them to the higher law, namely, the law of Christ, and they
          continued under this law, under this condemnation for a long
          time, and the Lord swore in his wrath that they should not enter
          into his rest in consequence of having broken the higher law.
          Moses again went up into Mount Sinai, and was gone a second time
          forty days and forty nights, without eating and drinking, and
          received this law, this carnal law that is generally denominated
          the law of Moses, upon second tables of stone, the first covenant
          having been dashed to pieces, or in other words the first law,
          the higher law of the Gospel contained on the first tables, was
          destroyed and the covenant broken, and a new law was introduced.
          Incorporated on the second tables of stone were the Ten
          Commandments, which pertain to the Gospel, which were also on the
          first tables. In addition to these Ten Commandments which pertain
          to the Gospel, were many of those carnal laws that I have been
          speaking of. By this second code of laws it was impossible for
          Israel to enter into the fulness of celestial glory, in other
          words, they could not be redeemed and brought into the presence
          of the Father and the Son; they could not enter into the fulness
          of that rest that was intended to be given to such only as obeyed
          the higher law of the Gospel.
          After the days of Moses the children of Israel, from time to
          time, corrupted themselves before the Most High; they would not
          abide even in the lower law; but there were a few individuals in
          the various generations of Israel, such as Prophets, Schools of
          Prophets, &c., which received the higher law, and obtained the
          higher priesthood, and were blessed of the Lord, and had the
          privilege of entering into his rest, being filled with the spirit
          of prophecy and revelation, having the power not only to prophecy
          and to obtain revelation, but to come up by virtue of the higher
          law, into near communion with the Father and the Son, having the
          privilege to behold, by vision, the face of the Lord.
          About six hundred years before Christ the children of Israel, or
          rather the house of Judah, that was still left remaining in the
          land of Palestine, had again so far apostatized from the Lord
          their God, that the Lord threatened, by the mouth of the
          Prophets, that he would destroy that great city Jerusalem, and
          that the people should be led away captive into great Babylon. We
          find this was fulfilled. But eleven years previous to this great
          captivity, the Lord led one of the Prophets, whose name was Lehi
          and his sons and one or two other families from the land of
          Jerusalem to this American continent. That was about six hundred
          years before Christ; of these families the American Indians are
          the descendants. But we will leave this branch of Israel on the
          American continent and return again to the house of Judah. While
          they were in captivity in Babylon the Lord raised up Daniel, the
          Prophet, from whose words I have taken my text. Daniel had the
          great privilege given unto him of knowing concerning the rise and
          fall of kingdoms and empires, of beholding the kingdoms of the
          earth, from his day, down until that universal kingdom of God
          should be established on the earth never more to be destroyed.
          First, Nebuchadnezzar, the heathen king, was visited by the
          Almighty in a heavenly dream, but his dream was taken from him,
          and he could not remember it when he awoke. He called for the
          wise men of Babylon--the astrologers, soothsayers, magicians and
          the wisest men that could be found, requesting them to tell him
          his dream, and then give him the interpretation of it. The dream
          left a deep impression on the mind of this great heathen king,
          and he believed that it was something of great importance, but
          still it could not be remembered.
          I will here remark, by the way, that the heathen nations in those
          days were not so far corrupted, and had not so far apostatized
          from the religion of heaven but what they believed in dreams and
          in revelations, and thought there might be something contained
          within them that related to the future that would be advantageous
          to understand. What man, at this day, at this enlightened era,
          among the Christian nations, is so near to the Lord as to
          acknowledge new revelation as did Nebuchadnezzar? Far have they
          fallen beneath the standard of heathen idolators!
          King Nebuchadnezzar was so earnest in regard to this matter that
          he sent forth a decree that unless the wise men of Babylon would
          interpret to him his dream and also tell the dream itself, he
          would destroy the whole of them. I suppose he had not much
          confidence in them, and consequently concluded that if they could
          not tell the dream he could not put confidence in their
          interpretations. When Daniel heard of the decree of the king, to
          destroy all the wise man, he sent in a request that the king
          would not be quite so hasty in his measures, but give him a
          little time, during which he and his fellows besought the God of
          heaven that they might know concerning the dream and the
          interpretation thereof. The Lord heard the prayers of his
          servants and revealed to Daniel concerning the dream, and also
          gave him the interpretation. Daniel requested to be brought
          before his majesty the king, and he promised to give the dream
          and the interpretation. He was brought in before him, and
          addressed him in language something like the following--"The wise
          men, astrologers, soothsayers, magicians, &c., can not interpret
          the dream, O king, neither is there any wisdom in me that I can;
          but there is a God in heaven who is able to give the
          interpretation thereof. Thou, O king, art a king of kings, and
          the God of heaven hath given thee a kingdom, and dominion over
          all the nations. Thou art a part and portion of the dream; or, in
          other words, you represent a portion of the dream you had. Thou,
          O king, sawest and beheld a great image. This image's head was of
          fine gold, the breast and the arms of silver, the belly and the
          thighs of brass, the legs were of iron, the feet were part of
          iron and part of potter's clay. Thou sawest until that a stone
          was cut out of the mountain without hands, which smote the image
          upon the feet that was part of iron and part of clay, and brake
          them to pieces, then was the iron, the clay, the silver, the
          brass and the gold all broken to pieces together, and became like
          the chaff of the summer threshing floor, and the wind carried
          them away, and there was no place found for them, but the stone
          that smote the image became a great mountain and filled the whole
          earth. This was the dream--he then gives the interpretation.
          "Thou, O king, art this head of gold." That is, the kingdom of
          Nebuchadnezzar, that bore rule over all the earth, was considered
          the head of gold. "After thee shall come another kingdom
          represented by the breast and the arms of silver." That is the
          Medo-Persian kingdom. After that another kingdom still inferior,
          called the kingdom of brass, forasmuch as gold is better than
          silver, silver more precious than brass, so these kingdoms that
          were to arise, to succeed each other, were to be inferior as time
          should pass along. The third kingdom, of brass, represented the
          Macedonian empire; then after that another kingdom, great and
          terrible, whose legs were of iron, strong and powerful. The
          fourth kingdom bore rule over the earth; that is admitted, by all
          commentators, to be the great Roman Empire, and by the division
          of the Roman empire into two divisions, representing the legs,
          and afterwards into the feet and toes. I shall not go through and
          bring up historical facts to show the particular divisions that
          grew out of the Roman empire, but will merely state that the
          present modern kingdoms of Europe that have grown out from the
          Roman empire represent the last vestiges of that great and
          powerful empire of Rome; that is, it fills up and makes the image
          complete. First the head of gold--the Babylonian empire; second,
          the breast and arms of silver--the Medo-persian empire; third,
          the belly and thighs of brass, the Macedonian kingdom; fourth,
          the great Roman empire represented by the two legs of iron, the
          eastern and the western empires of Rome. Afterwards a division of
          the Roman empire into feet and toes, constituting all the modern
          European governments and those, governments that have grown out
          of the European governments located in North and South America.
          Do we wish to understand the geographical position of the great
          image? if we do, we must consider the head located in Asia; the
          breast and the arms of silver a little west of the great
          Babylonian Empire, the belly and thighs of brass still westward;
          the legs of iron and the modern kingdoms composing the feet and
          toes, part of iron and part of clay, as extending throughout
          Europe and branching across the Atlantic Ocean, and extending
          from the East Sea even to the West, from the Atlantic unto the
          Pacific. This will constitute the location of the great image,
          running westward.
          The image being now complete, all that we need now is to find
          something that will represent the stone cut out of the mountain
          without hands, something distinct entirely from the image, having
          no fellowship with it, that has not grown out of it, and that has
          no authority that comes from it, but a distinct and entirely
          separate government that should be established in some mountain.
          "Thou sawest until that a stone was cut out of the mountain
          without hands." What shall that stone do? It shall smite the
          image upon the feet and toes. Not upon the head, at first, not
          upon the breast and arms of silver, not upon the belly and thighs
          of brass, not upon the modern kingdoms of Europe that have grown
          out of the legs of iron, but shall smite upon the feet and toes
          of the great image; there is where it is to commence its attack.
          Now let us inquire, for a few moments, how or in what manner this
          kingdom, called the stone cut out of the mountain, commences this
          severe attack. Is it to be with weapons of a carnal nature, with
          sword in hands and weapons of warfare to wage a war against the
          kingdoms or governments of the earth? No, indeed! Connected with
          the kingdom or stone cut out of the mountain without hands is a
          power superior to that of carnal weapons--the power of truth, for
          the kingdom of God cannot be organized on the earth without truth
          being sent down from heaven, without authority being given from
          the Most High; without men again being called to the holy
          Priesthood and Apostleship, and set forth to publish the truth in
          its naked simplicity and plainness to the inhabitants of the
          earth. This truth will be the weapon of warfare, this authority
          and power sent down from heaven will go forth and will proclaim
          the message of the everlasting Gospel, the Gospel of the
          latter-day kingdom, publishing it first among the nations that
          compose the feet and toes of the great image. Will they be broken
          to pieces? Yes, when this message is published to them. When they
          are sufficiently warned, when the servants of God have gone forth
          in obedience to his commandments, and published in their towns,
          villages, cities, States and governments these sacred and holy
          principles that God Almighty has sent down from heaven in the
          latter times, it will leave all people, nations and tongues that
          hear the Gospel, and the principles and message pertaining to
          that kingdom, without any excuse. It will be a warning that will
          be everlasting on the one hand, or on the other, either to the
          bringing of the people to repentance, reformation and obedience
          to the Gospel of the kingdom, or the judgments which are
          predicted in this prophecy of Daniel will be poured out upon the
          heads of those nations and kingdoms, and they will become like
          the chaff of the summer threshing floor, even all those kingdoms
          that compose the great image; for be it known that the remnants
          of the Babylonish kingdom, represented by the head of gold, still
          exist in Asia; the remnants of the silver kingdom, of the brass
          kingdom, and the kingdom of iron still have their existence; but
          when the Lord Almighty shall fulfil this prophecy, the toes and
          feet and legs of iron of that great image, or all these kingdoms,
          will be broken in pieces, and they will become like the chaff of
          the summer threshing floor; the wind will carry them away and no
          place will be found for them.
          This prophecy of Daniel will give a true understanding of the
          matter to our wise men and statesmen, and all who desire to know
          the future destiny of the American government, the European
          governments, and all the kingdoms of the earth. Their destiny is
          total destruction from our earth, no matter how great or powerful
          they may become. Though our nation may grasp on the right hand
          and on the left; though it may annex the British possessions, and
          extend its dominions to the south and grasp the whole of this
          great western hemisphere, and although our nation shall become as
          powerful in population as in extent of territory, its destiny is
          foretold in the saying of the Prophet Daniel, "They shall become
          like the chaff of the summer threshing floor, the wind shall
          carry them away and no place shall be found for them." So with
          the kingdoms of Europe, so with the kingdoms of Western Asia and
          Eastern Europe.
          Let us now say a few words in regard to this stone which shall be
          cut out of the mountain without hands. Now there must be
          something very peculiar in regard to the organization of the
          Latter-day kingdom that is never to be destroyed. All these other
          governments that I have named have been the production of human
          hands, that is, of human ingenuity, human wisdom; the power of
          uninspired men has been exerted to the uttermost in the
          establishment of human governments, consequently all has been
          done by human ingenuity and power. Not so with the little stone.
          Man has nothing to do with the organization of that kingdom. Hear
          what the Prophet has said: "In the days of these kings the God of
          heaven shall set up a kingdom." It is not to be done by human
          means or power, or by the wisdom of man, neither by mighty
          conquests by the sword; but it is to be done by him that rules on
          high, who is King of kings and Lord of lords; by him that
          suffered and died upon the cross that we might live; by him whose
          right it is to reign and govern the nations of the earth. He it
          is that will give laws; he it is that will give commandment; he
          it is that will organize that kingdom, and it will be done
          according to the pattern in all things. Has there been any such
          kingdom organized since the day that the Prophet Daniel delivered
          this prophecy? I know that there are some who believe that the
          kingdom spoken of under the name of the "little stone" was
          organized 1800 years ago by our Savior and his Apostles. I do not
          know why they believe this, unless because it is fashionable.
          There is no evidence to prove any such thing. Indeed that kingdom
          that was organized 1800 years ago was organized altogether too
          soon to accomplish the prophecies that are here given. The two
          legs of iron, and the feet and toes were not yet formed, and
          remember that the stone is not cut out of the mountain without
          hands, until this great image is complete, not only the head,
          breast, arms and the legs, but the feet and the toes also; they
          all become complete before the kingdom called the "stone" is made
          manifest. Now the feet did not exist, and did not begin to exist
          until many centuries after the days of Christ. What did that
          kingdom do that was built up by our Savior and his Apostles? Did
          it break in pieces any part of that great image? No. What did
          that image do to that kingdom? It accomplished the prophecies of
          Daniel--made war with the Saints and overcame them. Very
          different from the latter-day kingdom! The powers of this world,
          under the name of the great image, made war with Jesus, with the
          Apostles, with the former-day Saints, with the kingdom that was
          then established and overcame them, not only in fulfillment of
          what is declared by the Prophet Daniel, but also what is declared
          by John the Revelator; and those powers obtained dominion over
          all people, nations and tongues, and made them drink of the wine
          of the wrath of the fornication of Great Babylon, and they became
          drunken with her abominations. Instead of the kingdom of God then
          being built up in fulfillment of the prophecy of Daniel 1800
          years ago, the nations of the earth overcame it and rooted it out
          of the earth. But mark the words of the text: "And in the days of
          these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom that shall
          never be destroyed." Very different from the former-day kingdom;
          "and the kingdom shall not be left to other people." All these
          human governments have been changing hands, and have been left to
          some other people. The Babylonish kingdom was left to the Medes
          and Persians, the Medo-Persian kingdom to the Macedonian, the
          Macedonian to the Roman; but the latter-day kingdom shall not be
          left to another people, but it shall break in pieces and consume
          all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever. "Forasmuch as
          thou sawest that the stone was cut out of the mountains without
          hands, and that it brake in pieces the iron, the brass, the clay
          the silver and the gold; and the great God hath made known unto
          thee what shall come to pass hereafter, and the dream is certain
          and the interpretation thereof sure."
          Having learned, then, that the kingdom built up by our Savior and
          his Apostles did not fulfil this prophecy; that that kingdom
          itself was rooted out of the earth, and every vestige of its
          authority destroyed, and that nothing in the shape or appearance
          of the kingdom of God has existed for some sixteen or seventeen
          centuries past, inasmuch as this is the case and all nations
          without any such Church, without any such kingdom without any
          authority to baptize or lay on hands for the gift of the Holy
          Ghost; without authority to administer the Lord's supper; without
          the authority to build up the kingdom of God; without Prophets,
          without Revelators, without inspired Apostles, without angels,
          without visions, without the revelations and prophecies of
          heaven, which always characterize the kingdom of God; I say
          inasmuch as this is the case, and darkness has covered the earth
          and gross darkness the people for so many generations, no wonder
          that, in the wisdom of God, the time should at length arrive to
          send another messenger from heaven. No wonder that an angel
          should be commissioned from the eternal heavens from the throne
          of the Almighty with another message to the inhabitants of our
          globe! For do you suppose that this latter-day kingdom that is to
          be set up without hands will be set up without any communication
          from heaven, without any new revelation, without any Prophets,
          without any Apostles, or inspired men? Do you suppose that God
          will accomplish a work of this nature and yet the heavens be
          veiled over our heads like brass? Oh no. When the glad time shall
          come for God Almighty to organize and set up the latter-day
          kingdom on the earth, he will make it known by sending an
          angel--and in no other way, for that is the way pointed out in
          If a man rises up, like John Wesley, Martin Luther, John Calvin,
          or Henry the Eighth, and undertakes to organize a new church and
          new creeds, &c., without receiving the ministration of an angel,
          you may know that the ecclesiastical governments that they may
          form on the earth, are not the kingdom of God. But when a people
          shall rise on our earth, testifying that the Lord God has sent an
          angel from heaven, with the everlasting Gospel to be preached to
          every people, kindred, nation and tongue, on our globe, with the
          proclamation that the hour of God's judgment is at hand, that
          people are worthy of being listened to, at least it should call
          forth the most careful investigation of all people, nations and
          kindreds under the whole heaven. But when they do not come in
          this way, they are not even worthy of being listened to, for we
          know that they are not the kingdom of God.
          John the Revelator tells us that when the kingdom of God is to be
          established on the earth, before the coming of the Son of man,
          before he should unveil his face in the clouds of heaven, he
          would send an angel with that Gospel. Now, query, has he done so?
          Go make the enquiry if you are not satisfied. Ask the Roman
          Catholics if God has sent that angel predicted in the 14th
          chapter of the revelations of St. John to re-establish his
          kingdom on the earth, and they will tell you no; they will tell
          you that the kingdom of God has continued on the earth, that it
          needs no re-establishing, that they have maintained in unbroken
          succession the authority of the apostleship from the days of
          Peter down until the present time, and that they will retain it
          while the earth shall stand; that there will be no angel sent
          with the everlasting Gospel to organize the kingdom anew. Well,
          then, we have their testimony that they are not the kingdom of
          God, for they have denied many of the great characteristics
          belonging to the kingdom, such as the gift of new revelation, the
          gift of prophecy, which was always in the kingdom of God, and
          have bound up a few books and called them the full canon of
          Scripture. And if a Prophet should arise among them and undertake
          to give more Scripture, they would exclude his Scripture and him
          with it, as being a heretic and fanatic. They are not the kingdom
          of God then.
          Go then to the Greek Church and make the same inquiry of them.
          Has God sent an angel to you Greeks? I mean the millions in
          Russia who profess the Greek religion, and they will tell you
          about the same thing as the Catholics--that God has said nothing
          since the days of the Apostles.
          No inspired men among them and no additional Scriptures by
          Prophets and Revelators.
          Then go to the 666 different Protestant denominations that have
          come out from these ecclesiastical powers and inquire of them if
          God did send an angel to those who founded their several
          denominations, and they will tell you nay. Most of them will say
          that God does not send angels in the latter times, that he has no
          Prophets, no Revelators, and that there is no need of any further
          light from heaven. Go through all the ranks of Christendom and
          make diligent inquiry for a people that answer the description of
          John's prophecy, namely a people that bear testimony that an
          angel has come with the everlasting Gospel. By and by, in your
          inquiry you will get away up here into the heights of the Rocky
          Mountains, or as some term it the backbone of the American
          continent; inquire of the people you find here, ask of them at
          their great headquarters, Salt Lake City, whether they believe
          that God has established his kingdom by sending an angel in
          fulfillment of the revelations of St. John, and you will hear one
          united voice throughout all this city among the Latter-day
          Saints, saying that God has sent an Angel from heaven with the
          everlasting Gospel to be preached to every nation, kindred,
          tongue and people. Make the same inquiry in the hundred towns,
          cities and villages throughout this Territory, and there will be
          a united voice of all the Latter-day Saints to this one same
          great fact. We therefore contend, and rightfully too, that we are
          the only people in America, in Europe, in Asia, in Africa and in
          the islands of the sea that are testifying to the fulfillment of
          the prophecy that was uttered by John the Revelator. We have no
          need, then, to inquire whether all these contending sects are the
          kingdom of God or not, for this is the only people that bear a
          testimony, to the coming of the angel with the Gospel.
          Consequently this is the only people that need engage our
          attention or investigations in regard to setting up the
          latter-day kingdom; and if we, by our investigation, find that
          this people answer the description, not only of John's prophecy
          but of Daniel's prophecy and all the prophecies throughout the
          Old Testament in regard to the establishment of the kingdom of
          God, then certainly the doctrines and principles of this kingdom
          are worthy the attention and obedience of every good person.
          If we had time we would examine the doctrines of the kingdom, to
          see whether, the doctrines that were brought by the angels in
          these latter times agree with the doctrines that were taught 1800
          years ago; but we have not time to do that on this occasion.
          Suffice it to say that if the former-day Saints taught faith in
          God, repentance, baptism for the remission of sins, the reception
          of the Holy Ghost by the laying on of hands; if they taught these
          things in former days, be it known unto all people, nations, and
          tongues that the angel has commissioned his servants to preach
          the same things in these days. If the former-day Saints taught
          the necessity of having the various gifts of the Gospel, such as
          the gifts of vision, the ministration of angels, prophecy,
          revelation, healing the sick, speaking with tongues, the
          interpretation of tongues, and all the various gifts mentioned in
          the New Testament; if they taught these things in former days,
          the Latter-day Saints have been commissioned to teach the same
          things in our day, consequently there is no difference so far as
          doctrines, ordinances and the gifts are concerned.
          Did the Prophets in ancient times testify that when the kingdom
          of God should be organized, the Saints should be gathered from
          the four quarters of the earth, that all that were called by the
          name of the Lord should be brought out from the north and from
          the south, and from the east and from the west, even the sons and
          daughters of God should be brought from all nations? The
          Latter-day Saints teach that the same angel which brought the
          Gospel, the same God that has set up his kingdom on the earth in
          the latter days has commanded his servants that go forth with
          these doctrines, to gather out his elect from the four winds of
          heaven. Did the ancient Prophets testify that another book should
          come forth, another revelation to accomplish the great
          preparatory work to build up the kingdom of God in the last days?
          The Latter-day Saints testify that the angel that has brought the
          Gospel has delivered to them another book containing that Gospel
          in all its fullness and plainness, fulfilling these prophecies.
          May God bless you. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 /
          Wilford Woodruff, April 8, 1872
                           Wilford Woodruff, April 8, 1872
                          REMARKS BY ELDER WILFORD WOODRUFF,
           Delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, April 8, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          We have had a very good Conference; we have heard a great deal of
          testimony from the servants of the Lord, and that testimony has
          been true. The building up of the Zion of God in these latter
          days includes, I may say of a truth, every branch of business,
          both temporal and spiritual, in which we are engaged. We can not
          touch upon any subject which is lawful in the sight of God and
          man, that is not embraced in our religion. The Gospel of Jesus
          Christ which we have embraced, and which we preach, includes all
          truth, and every lawful calling and occupation of man. One
          subject that we are deeply interested in I wish to say a few
          words upon. In the first place I wish to give notice in this
          stage of my remarks to the members of the Deseret Agricultural
          and Manufacturing Society, that they are requested to meet, at
          the close of this meeting, at the Historian's Office, to appoint
          their president and board of directors for the coming season, for
          the times demand that we should hold a State fair in this city
          this fall.
          Strangers may think this a very strange subject to present in a
          religious meeting, but we are building up the literal kingdom of
          God on the earth, and we have temporal duties to perform. We
          inhabit temporal bodies, we eat temporal food, we build temporal
          houses, we raise temporal cattle and temporal wheat; we contend
          with temporal weeds, and with temporal enemies in our soil, and
          these things naturally give rise to the necessity of attending to
          and performing many duties of a temporal and arduous nature, and
          they, of course, are embraced in our religion. In building up the
          Zion and kingdom of God in these latter days, our agricultural
          and manufacturing interests are of the most vital importance; in
          fact manufacturing and agricultural pursuits are of vital
          importance to any nation under heaven. Show me a nation whose
          people cultivate the earth, and manufacture what they need, and I
          will show you a rich and independent nation. Show me a nation
          that lives entirely by mining and I will show you a rich and
          independent nation. Show me a nation that lives entirely by
          mining and I will show you a poor nation--one that is ready to
          run out and become obsolete. You see this manifest in the history
          of all nations under heaven. What gives England her wealth
          to-day? Her coal, iron, and the products of her soil, in
          connection with her prodigious manufactures; and it is so with
          all the nations of the earth. What makes the United States what
          she is to-day? Her products and the cultivation of her soil, and
          the constant efforts she has made to supply the wants of her
          people. Not but what mining is all right, there is no fault with
          the development of the resources of the earth under favorable
          circumstances. When we came here our position demanded that the
          very first thing we did was to plant our potatoes and sow our
          wheat, or we had starvation before us; and I will here say that
          the Saints and the Elders of Israel have gone before the Lord day
          after day and week after week, and prayed the Almighty to hide up
          the treasures of these mountains, lest even the Latter-day
          Saints, with all the faith they had, should be tempted to turn
          away from the cultivation of the earth and the manufacture of
          what they needed; and the Lord heard our prayers, and we dwelt
          here many years and filled these valleys for six hundred miles
          with cities, towns, villages, gardens. orchards, fields,
          vineyards, hundreds of school-houses, and places of worship,
          until we made the desert blossom as the rose, and had a supply of
          wheat, bread and clothing upon our hands. Then, I do not know but
          the Elders ceased praying for the Lord to hide up the treasures
          of the earth--I guess they did, for very soon after mines began
          to be opened, and now silver mines are being worked in many parts
          of the Territory. A few years ago General Connor and others, who
          dwelt here, with soldiers under them, spent very many days in
          prospecting these mountains from one end to the other for gold
          and silver, but they could find none; to-day you may go over the
          same places, and if you dig into the earth you may find plenty of
          silver, and you may find it almost anywhere in these mountains. I
          suppose this is all right, I have no fault to find with it; but I
          still say that the interest of the Latter-day Saints in these
          mountains is to cultivate the soil and to manufacture what they
          Through the influence of President Young we have many
          manufactories for wool and cotton already established in this
          Territory. He has done more than any man living in these last
          days, according to the means he has had at his command, to
          establish these branches of business in the midst of these
          mountains. We have now many large factories in this Territory
          that have to stand still for want of wool. I want to say a few
          words on this subject to the wool growers of Deseret. Instead of
          sending our wool out of the Territory, to eastern States to be
          manufactured into cloth, and purchasing it and paying eastern
          manufacturers a large per centage for it when brought here by
          railroad, I feel that it is our duty, and it would be far wiser
          for us, to sell our wool to those who own factories in this
          Territory, and to sustain ourselves by sustaining home
          One of the first commands given to Adam, after being placed in
          eden, was to dress the garden; and he was permitted to eat of the
          fruit of every tree except one. After a while Adam and his wife,
          Eve, partook of the fruit of this tree, and the history of the
          Fall is before us and the world. After Adam was cast out of the
          garden the Lord told him that there should be a curse on the
          earth, and instead of bringing forth beautiful flowers, fruit and
          grain spontaneously, as before the Fall, it should bring forth
          horns, briers, thistles and noxious weeds, and that man should
          earn his bread by the sweat of his brow; and from that time to
          the present mankind has had this curse to contend with in the
          cultivation of the earth. In consequence of this the inhabitants
          of Utah, in their agricultural operations have to fight against
          the cockle burr, the black seed and sunflower, as well as thorns
          and thistles and many other noxious weeds, which, if not
          eradicated, speedily take advantage of us, and to a great extent,
          mar the result of our labors. It will pay us to pay attention to
          these things; it will pay us to dress the earth, to till it, to
          take care of and spend time and means in manuring and feeding it;
          it will pay us to gather out these noxious weeds, for the earth
          will then have a chance to bring forth in its strength. This,
          with the blessing of God upon our labors, has made the soil of
          Utah as productive as it is to-day. I wish to see this interest
          increase in our midst; and I hope, in addition to this, that
          those who are raising sheep--our wool growers--will pay attention
          to and carry on that branch of business systematically, and that
          we will sell our wool to those who manufacture it at home,
          instead of sending it out of the Territory to be manufactured. I
          feel that this is our duty, and the course which will promote our
          best interests, and it is a principle which is true, independent
          of religion, in any community or nation; it is a self-sustaining
          God has blessed us, he has blessed the earth, and our labors in
          the tilling of the soil have been greatly prospered. As has been
          said by some of our brethren in their remarks, when the pioneers
          came here, no mark of civilization or of the white man, was
          found. If those who are now so anxious to obtain the homes we
          have made, had seen Utah as we saw it, they would never have
          desired a habitation here, but they would have got out of it as
          soon as they could. It was barren, desolate, abounding with
          grasshoppers, crickets and kiote wolves, and these things seemed
          to be the only natural productions of the soil. We went to work
          by faith, not much by sight, to cultivate the earth. We broke
          almost all the prows we had the first day. We had to let streams
          of water out to moisten the earth, and by experience we had to
          learn to raise anything. The stranger comes into Salt Lake City
          and sees our orchards, and the trees in our streets, and he
          thinks, what a fruitful and delightful place it is. He does not
          think that, for twenty or twenty-four years, almost every tree he
          beholds, according to its age, has had to be watered twice a week
          through the whole summer season, or they would all have been dead
          long since. We have had to unite upon these things, the Lord has
          blessed our labors, and his mercies have been over this people.
          If we had not cultivated the earth, but had turned our attention
          to mining, we should not only have starved to death ourselves,
          but thousands of strangers, who have passed through, would have
          shared the same fate. Utah Territory has been the great highway
          to California, Nevada, and all the western States and
          Territories, and they have all looked, in a measure, to Utah for
          their bread. Nobody but Latter-day Saints would have lived here,
          and endured the trails and afflictions that we endured in the
          beginning; none others would have stayed and fought the crickets
          one year, as we had to do year after year. Any people but the
          Latter-day Saints would have left this country long ago. Not only
          so, on account of the things I have already named, but I will
          here say that no other people could have lived here--no, they
          would have knocked each other's brains out on account of the
          little water they would have had in their irrigating operations.
          When men saw their crops and trees withering and perishing for
          the want of water, the selfishness so general in the world would
          have worked up to such an extent, that they would have killed one
          another, and hence I say that none but Latter-day Saints would
          have stood it; but they, by the training and experience they had
          before received, were prepared for the hardships and trials they
          had to encounter in this country. 
          Brethren and sisters, let us continue our efforts in cultivating
          the earth, and in manufacturing what we want. And I still urge
          upon our Female Relief Societies, in this city and throughout the
          Territory, to carry out the counsel President Young gave us years
          and years ago, and try, as far as possible, within ourselves, to
          make our own bonnets, hats and clothing, and to let the beauty of
          what we wear be the workmanship of our own hands. It is true that
          our religion is not in our coat or bonnet, or it should not be.
          If a man's religion is there it is not generally very deep
          anywhere else. But God has blessed us with the products of earth
          and the blessings of heaven, and his Spirit has been with us; we
          have been preserved, and the Lord has turned away the edge of the
          sword, and he has protected us during many years past and gone,
          and we all have to acknowledge his hand in these things.
          I do not wish to detain this Conference. I felt as though I
          wanted to make a few remarks on these subjects. I hope, brethren,
          that we will not slacken our hands with regard to the cultivation
          of the earth. In the prosecution of our labors in that respect we
          have everything to contend with that man has been cursed with for
          five thousand years. We should clean our fields, as far as we
          can, of the noxious weeds, and our streets of sunflowers. These
          things encumber the earth. We have come difficulty to contend
          with, unknown save in those portions of the earth where
          irrigation is practiced. It is true that a man may clean his
          fields of sunflowers, cockle burrs, blackseed and every other
          noxious weed that grows, and the very first time he waters his
          land here will come a peck or a bushel of foul seed from the
          mountains, and fill every field through which the stream flows.
          These difficulties we have to fight against, but we must do the
          best we can. As farmers, we should clean our seed, and not sow
          the foul along with the good. One man, in a few hours, with a
          good wire sieve, can sift enough seed for ten acres of land, and
          perhaps for twenty; while, to pull that bad seed out when grown
          will cost from one to five hundred dollars, for it will take a
          score of men days to do it. We should use our time, judgment and
          the wisdom God has given us to the best advantage in all these
          I want the brethren to come together this afternoon and elect
          their officers, for we desire to hold a fair this fall, in which
          the agricultural and manufacturing interests of the Territory may
          be represented and interested. Let us not be weary in well doing;
          let us not slacken our hands, either in cultivating the earth or
          in the manufacturing of what we need. Co-operate in agricultural
          and mercantile matters, also in our tanneries, and in the making
          of butter and cheese. One man may engage in these branches of
          business with advantage if he have skill and experience to guide
          him; but in co-operation the wisdom of all is combined for the
          general good. This plan has been adopted with advantage in other
          communities, cities, States, Territories and countries, and it
          can be in this more extensively than it has been hitherto. I pray
          that God will bless us, and bless this whole people; and I pray
          that the testimony which we have received here during this
          Conference, which is true, may not be forgotten by us. I can bear
          the same testimony. I know this work is of God. I know Joseph
          Smith was a Prophet of God. I have heard two or three of the
          brethren testify about brother Young in Nauvoo. Every man and
          every woman in that assembly, which perhaps might number
          thousands, could bear the same testimony. I was there, the Twelve
          were there, and a good many others, and all can bear the same
          testimony. The question might be asked, why was the appearance of
          Joseph Smith given to Brigham Young? Because here was Sidney
          Rigdon and other men rising up and claiming to be the leaders of
          the Church, and men stood, as it were, on a pivot, not knowing
          which way to turn. But just as quick as Brigham Young rose in
          that assembly, his face was that of Joseph Smith--the mantle of
          Joseph had fallen upon him, the power of God that was upon Joseph
          Smith was upon him, he had the voice of Joseph, and it was the
          voice of the shepherd. There was not a person in that assembly,
          Rigdon, himself, not excepted, but was satisfied in his own mind
          that Brigham was the proper leader of the people, for he would
          not have his name presented, by his own consent, after that
          sermon was delivered. There was a reason for this in the mind of
          God; it convinced the people. They saw and heard for themselves,
          and it was by the power of God.
          May God bless you. May he give us wisdom to direct us in all
          things, and promote all the interests of Zion for Jesus' sake.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 /
          Brigham Young, June 2, 1872
                             Brigham Young, June 2, 1872
                         REMARKS BY PRESIDENT BRIGHAM YOUNG,
          Delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, Sunday, June 2,
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                              OBSERVE THE SABBATH DAY.
          I have a request to make of the Bishops and Elders, of fathers
          and mothers, and of the brethren and sisters in general. There
          are a few points upon which I feel that I should like the people
          to receive a little counsel. One is, I would be very much
          pleased, and I do not think I would be any more satisfied than
          the Spirit of the Lord would, to have the Latter-day Saints pay a
          little more attention to the Sabbath day, instead of riding
          about, visiting, and going on excursions. There has been a great
          deal said upon this subject. We are continually teaching the
          people how to be saved, but they seem to forget the
          responsibilities that are upon them. I am as liberal in my
          feelings with regard to using the Sabbath for anything and
          everything, where duty demands it, as any person living, and
          believe that the Sabbath was made for man, instead of man for the
          Sabbath. But it is a day of rest. The Lord has directed his
          people to rest one-seventh part of the time, and we take the
          first day of the week, and call it our Sabbath. This is according
          to the order of the Christians. We should observe this for our
          own temporal good and spiritual welfare. When we see a farmer in
          such a hurry, that he has to attend to his harvest, and to
          haying, fencemaking, or to gathering his cattle on the Sabbath
          day, as far as I am concerned, I count him weak in the faith. He
          has lost the spirit of his religion, more or less. Six days are
          enough for us to work, and if we wish to play, play within the
          six days; if we wish to go on excursions, take one of those six
          days, but on the seventh day, come to the place of worship,
          attend to the Sacrament, confess your faults one to another and
          to our God, and pay attention to the ordinances of the house of
          How many ears will hear this, and how many hearts will receive it
          and treasure it up? That is the question. Words go into the ear
          and are forgotten; but I say to you, Latter-day Saints, it is
          your duty and my duty to pay attention to the Sabbath day. When
          my brethren, my friends, and my family have business on hand, and
          manage to start it on a Sunday morning, I head them off if I
          possibly can, by throwing some obstacle or other in the way, or
          by persuasion get them to omit it on that day. As far as I can, I
          also persuade my own family to observe the hours of meeting. Not
          that I can say that my family is as fond of meeting as I am
          myself. I like to meet with the brethren, and I like to go to a
          place of worship; I like to hear, and learn and pay attention to
          the ordinances of the house of God. I teach my family in these
          respects, and I do not know that I have any more fault to find
          with my own family than others have with theirs; perhaps there
          may be some credit due to them. But I say to the brethren and
          sisters, in the name of the Lord, it is our duty and it is
          required of us by our father in heaven, by the spirit of our
          religion, by our covenants with God and each other, that we
          observe the ordinances of the house of God, and especially on the
          Sabbath day, to attend to the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper.
          Then attend the Ward meetings and the quorum meetings.
          Another thing: I do wish that parents would urge upon their
          children to cease playing in the streets as much as they do.
          There are sufficient places of resort in various parts of the
          city without the boys being compelled to play in the middle of
          the streets. Every time I travel through the streets I see
          children playing in them. And will they turn out of the way for a
          carriage? No, they will not, and some of them will sometimes even
          dare you to drive over them; and sometimes people have to stop
          their carriages to save the lives of children. We have been more
          fortunate, here, I presume than in any other city in Christendom
          where they drive as many carriages as we drive in our city, in
          having so few accidents; but this I attribute to the kind hand of
          Providence. But we see children in the street, daring teamsters
          to run over them, and whether they are in a carriage, wagon,
          buggy, or cart it is no matter, they will not give the road for a
          horse team. I will say this to all Israel, to every man that
          carries himself discreetly--as a gentleman, if one of my boys
          attempts to obstruct the highway, so that you cannot drive along
          and attend to your business, leave your carriage, take your whip
          and give him a good sound horse-whipping, and tell him you will
          do it every time you find him in the street trying to obstruct
          the highway. I will not complain of you, although I can say this,
          I think, of a truth, that a boy of mine never did this, never. I
          have no knowledge of it at least. Look upon a community like
          ours, see the conduct of the youth in this respect, it is a
          disgrace to civilization; it is a disgrace to any people that
          profess good morals. Well, I wish to say this to the Saints, keep
          your boys from the streets, and from playing ball there. There
          are plenty of grounds for them to play upon and use at their
          pleasure, without going into the streets; and when we are so
          numerous that we have no place of resort for our boys to pitch
          quoits and play ball, there is plenty of ground on the earth, and
          we will thin out a little here and go where we can have a little
          more room. But we have plenty here at present.
          Now, remember, my brethren, those who go skating, buggy riding,
          or on excursions on the Sabbath day--and there is a great deal of
          this practiced--are weak in the faith. Gradually, little by
          little, little by little, the spirit of their religion leaks out
          of their hearts and their affections, and by and by they begin to
          see faults in their brethren, faults in the doctrines of the
          Church, faults in the organization, and at last they leave the
          kingdom of God and go to destruction. I really wish you would
          remember this, and tell it to your neighbors.
          And furthermore, how many Latter-day Saints, who live in this
          city, and are perfectly able to go to meeting, are away to-day?
          We have people enough in this city to fill this small building to
          overflowing every Sabbath, if they liked to hear the words of
          life. In the morning, it is true, there are many in the Sunday
          school, and that we recommend; but in the afterpart of the day,
          where are these school children? Are they playing in the streets,
          or are they visiting? In going to Sunday school they have done
          their duty so far; but they ought to be here. In their youth they
          ought to learn the principles and doctrines of their faith, the
          arguments for truth, and the advantages of truth, for we can say
          with one of old, "Bring up a child in the way it should go, and
          when it is old it will not depart from it." If we are capable of
          bringing up a child in the way it should go, I will assure you
          that it will never depart from that way. Many persons think they
          do bring up their children in the way they should go, but in my
          lifetime I have seen very few, if any, parents, perfectly capable
          of bringing up a child in the way it should go; still most of us
          know better than we do, and if we will bring up our children
          according to the best of our knowledge, very few of them will
          ever forsake the truth.
          Now, I beseech you, my brethren and sisters, old and young,
          parents and children, all of you, try and observe good, wholesome
          rules! Be moral, be upright, be honest in your deal. I do not
          wish to find fault with the Latter-day Saints, but I assure you,
          my brethren and sisters, we take too much liberty with each
          other; we do not observe the strict order of right and honesty in
          many instances, as much as we should, and we have got to improve
          in these things. We have been hearing, today, how the kingdom of
          God is going to prosper on the earth. So it is, that is very
          true. Do we think that we will prosper and abide in it, in
          unholiness and unrighteousness? If we do, we are mistaken. If we
          do not sanctify the Lord God in our hearts and live by every word
          that proceeds out of his mouth, and shape our lives according to
          the rules laid down in Holy Writ, and by what the Lord has
          revealed in latter days, we will come short of being members of
          this kingdom, and we will be cast out and others will take our
          place. We need not flatter ourselves that we are going to prosper
          in anything that is evil, and have the Lord still own us. It is
          very true that he is merciful to us and bears with us. "Wait
          another day," he says; "Wait another year, wait a little longer,
          and see if my people will not be righteous;" and those who will
          not, will be gathered to their own place; but those who will
          sanctify themselves before the Lord will inherit everlasting
          life. God bless you, Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 / Daniel
          H. Wells, June 8, 1872
                            Daniel H. Wells, June 8, 1872
           Delivered in the Bowery, Brigham City, Saturday, June 8, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                          SECURED--GOOD'S KINGDOM HAS COME.
          I feel glad of the opportunity of bearing my testimony once again
          to the principles of salvation that have been revealed in the day
          in which we live, to the children of men. There is an impression
          resting upon the people of every nation on the face of the earth,
          that some great events in human history are about to take place.
          In the Christian world there is a general belief that the time is
          approaching when the God of heaven will assume the reins of
          power. They talk about the reign of Christ, the great millennial
          day, when the kingdoms of this world will become the kingdoms of
          our Lord and his Christ.
          It is hardly possible for any person to live to the years of
          maturity without having some impression, some anxiety concerning
          his future state; all persons, at some period of their existence,
          have such impressions. They come from the Lord, and their effect
          on the mind is as plain as the mark of the type on the paper; and
          the reason we experience them is because we are the children of
          God. There is a link existing between God and his children here
          on the earth, and that draws them towards him, and enables all
          who listen to the promptings of his good Spirit to increase in
          good, and to overcome that which is evil. This is natural, and
          exists to a greater or less extent in the hearts of all the
          children of men.
          There is evil in the world--evil influences that strive against
          and destroy that which is good. Men's names are written in the
          Book of Life, and will forever remain written there unless they
          do something to cut the thread and to blot them out. Men are
          naturally religious in their feelings, and it is a perversion of
          their nature to go into wicked and by and forbidden paths. The
          practice of evil brings with it no peace or true happiness. It
          destroys the vital thread of life that reaches into the eternal
          bowers of peace and salvation. The Lord our God has never given a
          commandment to the children of men but that would, if observed,
          be for their happiness and well-being here on the earth, and it
          is for ourselves that we serve God and keep his commandments. All
          that he has done, all the commandments he has given, are for our
          benefit, not for his. It would be well for us, as the President
          has just observed, if we would walk in the channels of truth and
          virtue, and in strict obedience to the commands of God, for
          thereby we promote our own welfare and secure to ourselves an
          eternal inheritance in the realms of joy and happiness. The
          kingdom is ours if we will live for it. We may come to an
          inheritance of all that is worth desiring or possessing, of all
          that will be of any benefit to us either here or hereafter, if we
          will live for it.
          God, our heavenly Father, has restored the authority of the Holy
          Priesthood, through the channel of which a communication has been
          opened up between the heavens and the earth; and through that
          channel we can learn to know God, whom to know is life eternal.
          The way to this is opened to all the children of men, and the
          invitation has gone forth unto all people to repent of their
          sins, and return to God and receive the blessings. There is no
          true enjoyment but what can be obtained through this channel, and
          it is within the purview of the kingdom of God here upon the
          earth. The people should not be afraid of the government of God;
          it is only calculated for their benefit, and it will be a blessed
          day when it can take the place of the wicked governments that now
          exist on the face of the earth, and its establishment should be
          hailed as the grandest and best event that could take place among
          the children of men. In the kingdom and government of God is
          every blessing that is enduring, and it will confer upon those
          who abide its laws all the peace, joy and happiness they can
          conceive of. Outside of it there is nothing worth having; all
          real true happiness, all that can serve our best interests comes
          within its purview.
          Are we obliged, in order to secure present happiness and
          enjoyment, to go outside the kingdom of God? By no manner of
          means, although it is so esteemed in the religious world. A great
          many so-called religious people feel that they are restrained of
          their liberty and enjoyment by being members of their churches.
          This is a wrong view. Our Father in heaven does not wish to
          restrain his children in anything that is right, and it is right
          for people to enjoy themselves, and the very acme of happiness is
          to be obtained by obeying the behests and commands of our Father
          in heaven. Men may indulge in things they call happiness, but
          there is often no real happiness in them, for they bring
          punishment along in the sting they leave behind. It is not so
          with proper enjoyments--enjoyments within the scope of reason and
          right, where there is no infringement upon each other. The great
          law of demarcation between that which is wrong and that which is
          right is not to infringe upon the rights of another. No man has a
          right to infringe upon another. We serve ourselves, then, by
          serving God and keeping his commandments, and the way is so plain
          that no person can err therein. Our boys who have been properly
          raised and tutored in the Church and kingdom of God, who have
          attended Sunday school, learned the catechism and become
          conversant with the principles set forth in the Scriptures, in
          the Book of Mormon, and in the book of Doctrine and Covenants,
          and have been endowed with the authority of the Holy Priesthood,
          can teach men the way of life and salvation; and if they will
          follow their teachings they will bring them back into the
          celestial kingdom of God, they are so simple and so easy to be
          There are a good many ways pointed out by the children of men,
          which they call the ways of life and salvation, but the end
          thereof is death. The Lord is not the author of the confusion
          that exists in the religious world. Satan stands there, ready,
          and has religion at his fingers' ends, already manufactured, to
          suit the notions of men. Men get notions and ideas foreign to the
          truth, and they find religion manufactured to their order, and
          can get any kind that they have a mind to order, just as one who
          goes to a huckster's shop can purchase anything he has a mind to
          pay for. They have their manufactured religion to pay for, for
          Satan does not work for nothing.
          There is but one way, one faith, one baptism, one God, one Lord
          and Savior Jesus Christ, the mediator between God and man; he has
          made it manifest unto the children of men in the day and age in
          which we live. It has been told to us here, to-day, and is
          frequently reiterated in our hearing, that God is full of mercy,
          and would rather that all men should turn from evil and live. He
          begs people to turn from their evil ways. He says "Take upon you
          my yoke, for it is easy, and my burden, for it is light; and
          come, partake of the waters of life freely, without money and
          without price." These words are sounded in our ears continually,
          for the Lord would rather that all men would turn and live and
          come to him. Why so? He is merciful, and the invitation is as
          widespread as the vast domains of the world: it reaches every
          human being, every son and daughter of Adam upon the face of the
          whole earth. Holy messengers of salvation are sent forth by the
          direction of the God of heaven, through the channel of the holy
          priesthood that he has revealed and instituted again among men,
          warning the people to turn from their evil ways, and to become
          partakers of this great happiness and glory and to sustain his
          government upon the earth. It is true the impression has gone
          forth in the midst of the nations, and it is a true impression,
          that he will establish his government upon the earth. This earth
          belongs to God, he has a right to rule and govern it, and it is
          his intention to do so. Prophets, in ages gone by, have disclosed
          this, and modern prophets have done the same in our day through
          the channel of the Holy Priesthood. That Priesthood has been
          organized according to the ancient pattern, for God set in his
          Church, first Apostles, second Prophets, and so on. It has been
          reorganized according to this pattern, and the proclamation has
          gone forth--"Repent and give glory to God." The Gospel has been
          restored by the angel which John saw flying through the midst of
          heaven having the everlasting gospel to preach to those who dwell
          on the earth, saying, "Fear God and give glory to him, for the
          hour of his judgment is come." This message has been sounded in
          the midst of the nations, and the greater portion of the people
          who have gathered to these valleys have listened to this
          proclamation. It reached their ears and made an impression upon
          them, and they gathered up from the midst of the nations of the
          earth to these valleys of the mount to be taught in the ways of
          the Lord, that they might walk in his paths, instead of walking
          in the vain imaginations of their own hearts and in ways of
          error, because, as the ancient prophet says, "They have inherited
          error and lies from their fathers." Behold, this has been
          fulfilled in the day in which the angel has brought forth and
          revealed the Gospel. Now we can see wherein we and our fathers
          have been in error. We have been taught the precepts of men
          instead of the commandments of God; but in our day we have been
          touched with the light of truth and with the Spirit of the living
          God, through obedience to the principles of the Gospel. The
          Saints of the Most High, having heard these principles proclaimed
          in their ears, had faith in them and in God, and they repented of
          their sins and went forth into the waters of baptism, according
          to the words of our Savior--"Except a man be born of water and of
          the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God."
          Having ben obedient to these principles and having had hands laid
          upon them for the reception of the Holy Ghost, it has been given
          unto us, and we know, ourselves, concerning these things, and
          bear testimony this day that they are true. It has come from God,
          it is not any "guess so;" it is not a hope within a hope, that we
          have a hope, but we bear testimony that we verily do know that
          God has spoken, and we warn all people to repent and turn to God,
          and partake of the waters of life freely, without money and
          without price.
          This is what has brought this people together in the valleys of
          the mountains; and they are laboring now to bring forth and
          establish the Zion of God upon the earth, according to the words
          of his Holy Prophets, whose prophecies have been and are being
          fulfilled in the history of this people. The kingdom of God is
          actually transpiring right before our face and eyes, but the
          world cannot see it, because they are not born again. They can
          not enter this kingdom, because they are not born of the water
          and of the Spirit, and because they do not comply with the
          requirements of the Gospel and render obedience to the great plan
          of salvation devised in the heavens before the foundation of the
          world. This plan was understood and was in the programme before
          the morning stars together sang for joy, and who can better it?
          Puny men undertake to do so, but their efforts are vain, and they
          only betray their own folly and presumption. Our Father in heaven
          knew better than any of us what was for our best interests, and
          he has condescended to make it manifest to his children here, and
          if they would walk in accordance therewith they would lay the
          foundation for eternal power, dominion and glory.
          It is the duty of the Latter-day Saints to live by every word
          proceeding from the mouth of God.
          He has told us to keep the words of wisdom, and has said that
          they are adapted to the capacity of all who can be called Saints,
          even the weakest. But, see the frailty of humanity! We think we
          know and understand better than the Lord, what is best for us. We
          say this by our acts a great many times; but we might as well
          learn, first as last, that the Lord knows best, and that his way
          is better than ours, as much so as the heavens are higher than
          the earth. He has trodden the path, and has had the experience
          that we have not had, and has kindly condescended to make known a
          little of his experience in regard to these things. He has told
          us that it is not good for us to take spirituous liquors; but a
          great many of us think a little will do us no harm, and it is
          better for us to have it than not to have it. He has told us not
          to swear, not to take the name of the Lord in vain, not to give
          way to our evil passions. Our passions are good, and planted
          within us for a good and wise purpose, to give us strength and
          energy of character; but they should be governed and controlled
          by that heaven-inspired intellect and reason with which every
          person is endowed; in other words, our passions should be our
          servants and not our masters.
          If we are thus governed and influenced kindness, love and charity
          will fill every heart; but depart from that, let passion bear
          sway, then the evil influences that attend us take possession and
          cause us to go astray into by and forbidden paths. When passion
          rules it dethrones reason and intellect, and makes a beast of a
          man; and he who has no more command of himself that to be
          governed by passion has fallen far beneath the dignity of true
          manhood, and the end of such a course is death.
          These are some of the things that we have to be told of so often,
          because we are so forgetful, and we oftentimes let the cares of
          the world choke the word of life. The latter is sown in the
          hearts of the children of men, and sometimes it takes rot and
          grows fairly for a little while, and then withers and dries up.
          Sometimes if falls into good ground, takes root downward and
          bears fruit upward; and where it does not do this it is owing to
          the frailties of human nature, and to its proneness to wander
          from the way of life and to disregard the truths of heaven.
          One of the greatest boons that could be conferred upon the
          children of men would be to have the government of God
          established on the earth. Can they see it? No, they stand in fear
          of it. What makes men fear it? What makes them afraid of the
          Lord, or of his government being established on the earth? Its it
          not because their deeds are evil, and because they are afraid of
          receiving the punishment due for the same? The word has gone
          forth, and most men believe it, that every man will be judged
          according to the deeds done in the body, whether they be good or
          evil. And when men are conscious of evil deeds, and know they do
          not pay allegiance to the kingdom and government of God, they
          have reason to fear and dread the future; and let me say here,
          the time will come when they will call upon the rocks and
          mountains to fall upon them to hide them from his presence. But
          it should not be so. We need not be afraid of the rule and
          government of God, it is only calculated to benefit the children
          of men, and it will be a glorious happy day when it shall be
          established on the earth in its fulness. Men should fear to do
          wrong, to commit iniquity; they should to themselves the kindness
          to honor the principles that pertain to their well-being, and to
          eternal life and exaltation. Such principles should be hailed
          with joy, gladness and delight by all the children of men. The
          time will come when the government of God will prevail over the
          whole face of the earth, notwithstanding all that mankind, and
          all that the powers of evil can do against it. The principles
          which underlie the kingdom and government of God are those of
          truth and virtue, and they will endure; while sin, iniquity,
          disobedience and unbelief will be swept away, and the man who
          builds his house or castle on such a foundation will find that it
          will not stand in the day of the Lord Almighty. When the storms
          come and the winds beat upon that house it will be swept away; in
          that day too, men will be stripped of all their hypocrisy and
          iniquity, and they will stand forth in all their naked deformity,
          then they will call upon the rocks to fall upon and hide them
          from the presence of the Lord. Men should live so that they can
          bear the scrutinizing eye of the Almighty. Persons may think they
          can commit this or that evil, and no one will know it; they may
          be very secretive in doing wrong, and think they will never be
          found out. But if I commit evil I know it, and when I know it,
          one too many knows it; and the Lord knows it as well as I know
          it. We can not hide it from him, and we had better not commit
          ourselves in any such a way, for in the great day of the Lord
          these things will be revealed; man will stand forth in his naked
          deformity, and the wickedness of wicked men will be made to
          appear, and it will be written where it can be read by all people
          when the vail shall be taken from before the eyes. Then let us
          repent and turn to God with full purpose of heart, and the
          promise to every one who will do this in sincerity is that their
          sins shall be forgiven, and that they shall receive the testimony
          which we bear this day--namely that the Gospel we preach, is the
          Gospel of the Son of God and has been revealed for the salvation
          of the human family.
          This promise is certain and sure, there need be no doubt about
          it; it will be fulfilled to all whom the Lord our God shall
          call--to every one who repents of his evil ways and renders
          obedience to its mandates. The minister in the pulpit needs it as
          much as anybody else. Why? because he has taught error; he has
          assumed to himself the authority of high heaven, which has never
          been given to him. He has run before he was sent, and has taught
          the traditions of the fathers instead of the commandments of God.
          He needs to repent of his evil ways, and not only to repent of
          but to turn from them.
          No man can get a greater testimony of the forgiveness of his sins
          by the Lord, than a knowledge within himself that he has turned
          away from his evil deeds. He knows it then, for God has promised
          to forgive every one who will comply with the requirements of the
          Gospel and turn from evil; and the man who forsakes evil knows
          it, and if he has no other testimony of his forgiveness, this is
          as great a one as he can possess.
          I know that this is different kind of preaching from what people
          get in the world, but that makes no difference. We are a
          different people from any other, God has made us so by the
          instructions that he has imparted unto us through his servants.
          He has taught us another and a better way--the true way, the way
          that leads back to him, the way of life, truth and salvation. The
          Scriptures--the history of God's dealings with his children in
          past ages when the authority of the Holy Priesthood was on the
          earth, also bear testimony that this is the work of God, and that
          all who receive it, and remain true and faithful, may become
          coworkers with our heavenly Father in bringing to pass his
          purposes and establishing his kingdom upon the earth, if we will
          only let him work with us; but we must do this. He will establish
          his work any how, independent of us, if we do not see proper to
          aid him in this great enterprise. If we do not do it, he will
          find somebody who will, for the day of redemption, the set time
          has come for the commencement of this great work. An impression
          has gone forth among all the children of men that the time is
          rapidly approaching to prepare the way for the coming of the
          Lord, and the establishment of his kingdom on the earth. No
          matter whether it be Gentile, Jew, bond or free, heathen or
          Christian, this impression has been made on the minds of all
          classes of the children of men in all the nations of the earth,
          and it is true. The set time has come when God will put forth his
          hand to establish his kingdom, and every body knows it. We
          proclaim in the ears of the people that the angel has come and
          brought again the everlasting Gospel to preach to all the
          inhabitants of the earth--to every nation, kindred, tongue and
          people. Let those, then, who have not received it, make some
          inquiry concerning this work. It is not a thing done up in a
          corner, but it is like a city set on a hill, that can not be hid.
          The kingdom of God is transpiring before the eyes of the children
          of men. Let them take heed and not raise their heel against it,
          because if they do, it will only redound to their own
          discomfiture. Then they had better not do it, they had better
          receive it, or at least investigate, and then, if they do not
          receive it, they had better withhold their hands instead of
          seeking to destroy and overthrow the work and kingdom of God. All
          efforts to do so will be futile, they will do the kingdom no
          harm, for nothing can prevent its increase and triumph in the
          earth. God will not be thwarted in his purposes and designs. The
          set time has come for him to favor his people, and to establish
          his kingdom, and the puny arm of man will be powerless to prevent
          it. Have they not been trying for forty years? Are the lessons of
          the past of no benefit to the world? It would seem so, indeed.
          They are slow to learn this lesson, peradventure they may learn
          it after awhile, but not so long as evil predominates as it does
          at present in the hearts of the great majority of the children of
          men. We may be scattered and driven and have many afflictions to
          endure, but will that stay the work of God? No. How has it been?
          Let our past experience teach us and the world at the same time.
          It has only increased and given greater velocity to the work of
          God. Phoenix like, it has risen from its ashes and, if there is
          anything about it formidable, it has presented a more formidable
          face than ever before, notwithstanding the most strenuous
          exertions of its adversaries. My testimony is that the experience
          of the past will be renewed in the future, if the enemies of Zion
          work for its overthrow. They may succeed in taking the lives of
          some of the servants of God; they have done that in the past, but
          it never obstructed the work, and all their efforts in the future
          will be as powerless as in the past.
          It is for the Saints to ponder these things in their hearts, and
          with renewed confidence and greater faith to press forward in
          their high calling. Their past observation and experience have
          proved to them the necessity of continual diligence. Many who
          have borne faithful testimonies to the truth of this work have
          apostatized and forsaken the truth because they have neglected
          some duty and have gradually given way to evil, and the counsels
          of their mind have become darkened to the principles of truth,
          and they have finally forgotten that they ever knew them to be
          Then let us take heed to our steps. "Let him who standeth take
          heed lest he fall," is a very good exhortation. We are none of us
          independent, and none have got so far along but we find it
          necessary to live humbly before the Lord. We should pray without
          ceasing, and let our hearts be drawn towards the Lord
          continually, never forgetting him, or the principles that he has
          revealed unto us; but we should be actuated by them in all we say
          and all we do. If we do this, the Spirit of the Lord will be
          within us like a well of water springing up unto everlasting
          life. It is necessary that every one should live thus humbly
          before the Lord, in order to have full possession of this Spirit.
          This will bring peace, joy and comfort under all difficulties
          that may assail us and seek to prevent our progress in the
          kingdom of God.
          What is a man good for who flies the track the very moment
          obstruction or difficulty presents itself before him? Nothing. He
          has not proven his integrity, and he cannot prove it in this way.
          We have undertaken to follow the Lord through evils well as good
          report; and the Lord, and his ways, his teachings and government
          are in evil report in the world; and he who has independence and
          courage enough to strip himself of his surroundings in the world,
          and seeks to establish the kingdom of God, has to meet these
          difficulties which present themselves before him. He has to stem
          his ear to the popular stream. It is easy to float with the
          stream; but it requires more courage, and independence of
          character and greater nerve to stem the tide of corruption in the
          world than to go down with the current; and the man who takes
          this course is far more independent than he who has not the
          courage to do so.
          Then let us take courage and press onward if we have received the
          truth, as we know we have; if we have received the testimony of
          Jesus--the spirit of prophecy, as we know we have, let us take
          heed to our steps and continue faithful, never swerving to the
          right hand or to the left, for of all people in the world, the
          Latter-day Saints are the people who cannot afford to lay off the
          armor of righteousness for a moment. The tempter the evil one, is
          at our elbow, ready to enter in and take possession and blind our
          understandings and cause us to make shipwreck of our faith if
          The Saints should live humble, be courteous, be civil and live
          for God and his kingdom. That is the only job we have on hand.
          Let us work on that job as long as we live on the earth. Our
          religion is not a matter of enthusiasm, to last a day or a week,
          and then evaporate into thin air, like the religions of the
          world; but every hour, every day, every week, every year, as long
          as we live on the earth, it should be first with us, for it is
          only he who endures faithful and true to the end that will be
          saved, and will inherit everlasting habitations. We need not lay
          to our souls the flattering unction that we can go hand in hand
          with the devil all our lives and inherit celestial glory. That is
          not in the programme. We can do as we please about receiving or
          rejecting the principles of life and salvation as they have been
          revealed. We have this power, because we are free agents, to act
          as we please in this matter; but we can not go back into
          celestial abodes and inherit celestial glory unless we keep the
          law pertaining to that kingdom. And so with every other kingdom,
          even a telestial kingdom; we must abide a telestial law or we can
          not participate in the glory appertaining to it.
          I do not wish to continue. I feel thankful for the privilege of
          bearing my testimony, although I do not count myself a preacher.
          But the principles of the Gospel make preachers of us all, for
          they make us bear testimony of the same to the children of men.
          They impel every heart to say something, to bear testimony, if
          nothing more, to the truth of the principles we have received.
          This life-giving power, the Holy Ghost, I say, impels every
          person who has received it to bear this testimony according to
          the sphere and position he fills, and the duties he is called
          upon to perform. A person may be called to plough, sow, reap,
          build a railroad, work in the canyon or to go and preach to the
          nations of the earth, and one calling is as legitimate as
          another, inasmuch as he who is filling it is working in the
          legitimate channel, and aiding to build up the kingdom of God.
          Every person who has obeyed the Gospel has a share of
          responsibility to bring forth and establish this work upon the
          earth. None can shirk this responsibility, but it is shared by
          all according to their spheres and positions. Those engaged in
          raising families are doing their part to establish the Zion of
          God, just as much as in the performance of any other labor.
          Let us ponder these things in our hearts, receive the impressions
          made from the heavens above. This will exalt us above the
          grovelling things of earth and cause us to attain those which are
          before us with cheerful hearts and willing minds.
          May God preserve us in the purity of our most holy faith, and
          enable us to endure to the end, that we may inherit everlasting
          habitations prepared for the righteous, is my prayer for Jesus'
          sake. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 / George
          Albert Smith, July 7, 1872
                          George Albert Smith, July 7, 1872
                        REMARKS BY PRESIDENT GEORGE A. SMITH,
                  Delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                                Sunday, July 7, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          The administration of the Sacrament is an occasion which calls
          us, one and all, to reflection, to inquire of ourselves in
          relation to our course of conduct in life--whether the journey we
          have pursued, the paths that we are traveling, are in accordance
          with the holy principles of that religion which has been revealed
          for our salvation, and which we have received. While I have
          visited the cities of the East, I have observed that a great
          amount of means has been expended in the construction and
          ornamenting of churches and edifices for public worship. Every
          city, every village is beautified with magnificent buildings,
          stately domes, elegant spires, erected in honor and for the
          purpose of religion, and I have reflected upon the influence of
          this religion upon the minds of a community. In visiting friends
          I found many who are professors of religion, who seem to have an
          utter disregard for any forms of worship whatever, and who
          totally neglect prayer in the family and grace at the table. I am
          not aware, of course, whether or not this is general among
          Christians; but I notice among the Latter-day Saints, that it
          seems to be very natural to be slothful and negligent and
          careless in relation to our every-day, simple duties. We may
          build temples, erect stately domes, magnificent spires, grand
          towers, in honor of our religion, but if we fail to live the
          principles of that religion at home, and to acknowledge God in
          all our thoughts, we shall fall short of the blessings which its
          practical exercise would ensure.
          While the Sacrament is passed around, and we take the emblems of
          our Savior's death and suffering, and realize the sacrifice which
          he made for our salvation, we should ask ourselves, Do we
          remember him in all things? Do we acknowledge his hand in the
          providences with which we are surrounded? Do we call upon him in
          our families and in secret? Or do we neglect our duties, do we
          miss praying with our families in the morning, and have not time
          to do so in the evening, and are in such a hurry that we cannot
          even ask his blessing upon our food, and cannot take time to
          attend meeting on the Sabbath, nor afford to devote the day to
          rest, meditation and study? Let us also ask these questions of
          ourselves, Are we honorable in our relations with each other? Do
          we do by our neighbor as we would that he should do unto us? Are
          we just in our dealings? Are we honoring those principles of
          morality which alone can prepare us to inherit celestial glory?
          Brethren and sisters, if we ask ourselves these questions, and,
          after examining our conduct and career, can answer them honestly
          and truthfully in the affirmative, then we may partake of the
          bread and water in the presence of our heavenly father worthily.
          If, on the other hand, we have been negligent and careless, we
          should repent, for repentance is our first duty.
          Since I last saw you, I have visited the scenes of my childhood,
          and the place of my birth, after an absence of about forty years.
          My ideas of right and wrong were formed there; my associations
          with the people, up to fifteen years of age, were such as to give
          deep and strong impressions of their character, and of the
          principles by which they were governed. I cannot say that my
          visit was without its painful character. Forty years sweep from
          the face of the earth more than a generation. I understand
          statisticians to estimate that thirty-three years carry as many
          souls from the earth as dwell on it at one time. I went into my
          native town after forty years' absence, and inquired for those
          who were the business men in my boyhood, for the magistrates,
          ministers, merchants, farmers and mechanics with whom I was
          acquainted then. Where were they? Nearly all dead; a very few of
          the old faces, like ancient oaks, remain. On my father's farm
          there was a beautiful grove of maple--some two hundred trees,
          standing when I was there before, with no other timber among
          them, the ground sown with white clover--it was one of the most
          beautiful lawns I ever saw when I left it. I drove up before the
          house in which I was born, and said to the man who was residing
          there, "Is that grove standing?" "Not a maple tree on the farm,"
          was the reply. "Not a single one?" said I. "No," said he, "not a
          maple on the farm." I had not even the curiosity to drive across
          the farm, for in my mind that grove was the feature of all
          others, it was the place of my dreams.
          Many of you know that in 1853 we had difficulty with the Indians
          in Southern Utah. At that time I was military commander of the
          Southern Department. Previous to every attack on the settlement,
          my dreams would carry me back to that grove, and there I would
          see, or get some intimation of, the coming trouble with the
          Indians. Now there is not a tree left. It would have been about
          so with the people if I had staid away a few years longer.
          I went into the school district where I had resided some six
          years, and visited Mr. Porter Patterson, with whom I was well
          acquainted in my boyhood, and began inquiring for the neighbors.
          "Why," said he, "they are all gone but four: myself and wife, and
          Mr. John Stafford and Mrs. Garfield are all the married people
          that remain that lived here when you went away, thirty-nine years
          and two months ago." "Then," said I, "I must go to the
          These reflections would bring to my mind the sermons that I had
          heard in my youth. I went to the cemetery, and saw the graves of
          a great many of my old comrades. There were headstones with
          inscriptions to many whom, I had known, and some whose funerals I
          had attended, and I could recite texts, and a portion of the
          sermons preached at those funerals. They were generally passages
          like this--"Be ye also ready, for in such an hour as ye think not
          the Son of Man cometh." Passages of this kind were generally
          selected as warnings to all to be ready for death.
          From the monuments in the graveyard I found that a good many had
          been summoned in their youth, for there were the graves of boys
          and girls with whom I had associated, some of them my relatives.
          I visited three cemeteries with a like result--the one in our own
          neighborhood, one in Colton and the other in Potsdam village, in
          all of which I had been more or less acquainted.
          Latter-day Saints, in their preaching, call on men and women to
          prepare to live, and they teach them how to live, believing that
          if any person is prepared to live as he ought to, he will
          certainly be prepared to die whenever the summons shall come. It
          was never a part or portion of our teaching to attempt to scare
          men to heaven. I went to the meeting house, or rather to the site
          of the meeting house, for the old frame building had been
          replaced by another of bricks, and it converted into a lecture
          room for the normal school. In that old frame building I had been
          most solemnly sentenced to eternal damnation, nine times, by a
          Congregationalist minister forty years ago. He had gone to his
          grave, and nearly all the persons present in the congregation at
          the time, had followed, or preceded, him. The object of this
          sentence, in the eloquent and solemn language in which it was
          pronounced, and so oft-repeated, was, no doubt, to stir in the
          minds of impenitent sinners, and of me particularly, a conviction
          that would secure conversion to Christianity, as I was considered
          impenitent; and I do not know but the proper phrase would be, to
          scare me to heaven. But it did not have that effect with me, I
          never could understand nor realize certain portions of the
          teachings which I there heard. That I must become so thoroughly
          in love with the justice of God as to be perfectly willing to be
          damned to all eternity for his glory, and suffer all the miseries
          which they so eloquently described, was to me an impossibility, I
          could see no justice in such doctrines. But those were times of
          great religious excitement, when revivals and protracted meetings
          were common all over the country, and the souls of many were
          stirred to the very core, as it were, by the idea, then so
          strongly advocated, of the punishment and misery which were to be
          eternally inflicted upon all those who were finally impenitent.
          Those sermons divided the Christian world into two classes, one
          was made celestial, inheriting all the blessings and glory which
          a God could bestow; the other was banished to eternal misery.
          When the doctrines of the Latter-day Saints were preached to me I
          could understand them. I could believe in faith and repentance,
          in the principle of obedience, and in the doctrines of baptism
          for the remission of sins, and the laying on of hands for the
          gift of the Holy Ghost, and that God had provided for all beings
          that he ever created, a glory, honor and immortality in
          accordance with their works, whether good or evil, giving, as a
          matter of course, to the faithful Latter-day Saints, the reserved
          seats; or to use the language of the Apostle Paul, I could
          believe that there was a glory of the sun, a glory of the moon,
          and a glory of the stars, and that the glory of the stars
          differed as much as the stars differ in brilliancy; and that all
          sects, denominations and classes of people would receive
          punishments and rewards in accordance with his divine justice.
          Every Latter-day Saint that abides in the truth, faithful to the
          end, may expect the glory of the sun; and every man that acts in
          accordance with the light that he possesses lays a foundation for
          greater glory and honor than eye has seen, or than it has entered
          into the heart of mortal man to conceive.
          I did not visit these graves with the feeling that some of the
          ministers of orthodox churches sought to impress upon my mind in
          my youth--I did not believe that they were consigned to eternal
          punishment because they believed differently from what I did. I
          went there feeling a confidence that honorable men and women
          would receive honorable treatment from a just God. In speaking on
          this subject, I designed simply to wake up the hearts of my
          brethren and sisters to the necessity of maintaining this honor,
          and to the fact that, as we advance in the things of the kingdom,
          greater sacrifices and more faith and diligence are required on
          our part.
          I visited, in the course of my journey, the place where Joseph
          Smith's father was born--Topsfield, Massachusetts. I was in the
          house he was born in, and upon the farm where the family had
          resided three generations previous, they having resided in that
          county--Essex--as early as 1666. One object of my visit was to
          obtain some historical information in relation to the family of
          Joseph Smith. It was about eighty-one years since my grandfather
          moved away from that place, at which time my father was eleven
          years old, and Joseph's father twenty-one, they being brothers.
          It would seem strange that, after the lapse of eighty-one years,
          I should find any one who knew my grandfather, yet I saw several
          persons who stated that they were personally acquainted with him,
          although they could not remember when he moved away; but after
          doing so, he returned to that neighborhood, and visited his
          relatives and acquaintances, and they had distinct recollections
          of him, and gave me reminiscences of his history.
          The graveyard at Topsfield contained no monuments over about
          eighty years old. I do not recollect the exact date. Among the
          oldest were the names of my great aunts and other relatives.
          Being a firm believer in the doctrine of baptism for the dead, I
          was anxious to procure the names of those departed persons
          wherever our records might be deficient, and I have, I believe, a
          prospect of obtaining the names of about nine hundred of the
          kindred of my great grandmother--Priscilla Gould.
          The old portion of the burying ground at Topsfield, used by the
          early inhabitants, is totally without monuments--no gravestones
          whatever, so that I presume they simply used headboards or
          monuments of wood; and the place is now reserved as a sacred
          precinct in which, we were told that any of the kindred of those
          ancient worthies of the town might plant gravestones if they
          choose, but no person is allowed to be buried there. The cemetery
          had been enlarged, and from eighty years ago down to the present
          time there had been placed there many gravestones and handsome
          obelisks, some manifesting the pride and aristocracy of those who
          placed them there. I noticed one particularly, on which was
          inscribed a notice to the effect that the person buried there was
          a millionaire. It did not say whether he obtained money honestly
          or by some other means.
          In visiting the office of the town clerk, I examined the record
          kept by my great grandfather in 1776-8, at which time he was the
          clerk of that town. I also found, by examining the records ten
          years before then, that he had represented the town in the
          Legislature of the Colony of Massachusetts, and was a very firm
          supporter of the Revolution. Just as I was about leaving the
          office to go to the railway station, I was told by the clerk that
          he had a list of the names of the children of Robert Smith in the
          town record. Robert Smith was supposed by us to be the first of
          our family who settled in Massachusetts, sometime previous to the
          year 1665. I there ascertained what our family records fail to
          show. Our records show that he had a son Samuel, and that Samuel
          had a son Samuel, and that Samuel had a son Samuel and a son
          Asael, and Asael was our grandfather; but I ascertained that this
          Robert Smith had a large family, and their names are contained in
          that old town record.
          The Genealogical Society of Massachusetts has got out books
          containing the records of some hundreds of the families of the
          oldest settlers of the colony. If our friends here, whose
          ancestors were buried in New England, would unite in purchasing
          an entire set of these works, they would be enabled to find
          collateral, if not direct, branches of their kindred; and so
          obtain a key to help them in making the necessary records to
          attend to the ordinances for their dead. But our faith is,
          brethren and sisters, that when we have exhausted all the powers
          within our natural reason and reach to obtain a knowledge of our
          dead, and the Lord is satisfied with us, revelations will be
          opened to our understandings by which we will be able to trace
          back our genealogy to the time when men were within the pale of
          the principles and laws of the Priesthood, before these
          ordinances were changed and the everlasting covenant broken.
          In conversing with Mr. Zaccheus Gould and his wife, of Topsfield,
          over eighty years old, and Dr. Humphrey Gould, of Rowe, who were
          cousins of my father, I was enabled to pick up many very
          satisfactory items of information. I am also under obligation to
          Mr. John H. Gould, of Topsfield, and to the town clerk of that
          place, Mr. Towne, for valuable letters and papers relating to the
          history of our family, all of which, as they relate to the
          ancestry of Joseph Smith, will form an interesting page in
          connection with his history when it shall be published.
          I do not design, in conversing with you at the present time, to
          enumerate the visits I made, though they remind me of a remark
          made concerning me by my grandfather on the last day of his life.
          He died in his eighty-eighth year, I being then in my fourteenth
          year. Said he, "George A. is a rather singular boy. When he comes
          here, instead of going to play as the rest of my grandchildren
          do, he comes into my room and asks me questions about what
          occurred seventy or eighty years ago." It seemed to me, while I
          was absent, that I was pursuing the same course yet, for although
          I had got pretty well along in years, I still wanted to talk with
          the old folks.
          At Woonsocket, R. I., I visited Mrs. Tryphena Lyman, a cousin of
          my mother, in her 94th year, who was living with her unmarried
          daughter, an agreeable young lady in her 70th year. I had a very
          pleasant visit with them, and from them I learned some
          interesting incidents of my mother's ancestors. From my cousins,
          Mr. and Mrs. Simon D. Butler, of South Colton, N. Y., I obtained
          a copy of the family record of my great-grandfather, Deacon John
          Lyman, written by his own hand in his family Bible--now 200 years
          old. Mrs. Butler has been my most faithful correspondent among
          all my relatives, and my meeting with her and her husband was
          more like meeting a brother and sister than cousins.
          It is very well known that, by the election of a convention of
          delegates from all the counties of this Territory, held in this
          city, Ex-Governor Fuller and myself went to attend the Republican
          Convention at Philadelphia. Persons appeared there and objected
          to me because I was a "Mormon," and the committee on credentials
          did not think proper to allow the representatives of the people
          of Utah a seat in that convention, consequently we retired,
          believing, fully, that the time would come in our country when
          men will not be questioned in relation to their religious faith
          or practice, when called upon to perform the duties of citizens,
          but that if they are firm and upright supporters of the
          Constitution and laws of their country, that will be all that
          will be required of them. I then took the opportunity to make
          these visits, which I had designed doing years before, and which
          I believe will result in good, I did not seek to be publicly
          known; I made no attempts to preach, though invited at different
          times to do so; and I must say for the credit of New England,
          that I had the offer of a Christian church to preach in. I say
          this to show that New England is improving in its religious
          faith, that is, there is less bigotry there now than there has
          been at certain periods. I could have had numerous opportunities
          to preach, but I wished to make my journey one of rest, and
          addressed but one public congregation, and that was last Sabbath
          in the Latter-day Saints' Hall, Brooklyn.
          While at Philadelphia I met Mr. E. W. Foster, Supervisor of
          Potsdam, my native town, he being a member of the convention, and
          one of the committee on credentials before whom our claim to a
          seat was contested. After leaving philadelphia I visited Potsdam,
          and an incident occurred there which I will name. On landing at
          the railway station, Mr. Foster happened to be there, and
          recognizing me, he called me by name, and bid me welcome to the
          town. A very respectable-looking aged lady, hearing the name,
          stepped up to him and inquired if I was George A. Smith, and
          being answered in the affirmative, she seized my hand and said,
          "I want to thank you, your father saved my life." "Why, when?" "A
          good many years ago." "How?" "We were broken through the ice into
          the lake, and at the risk of his own life he saved mine." The
          cars were about starting, and she rushed from me and said, "My
          name was Eliza Courier." I really thought the incident worth
          naming, as occurring in the place of my birth, and from which I
          had gone nearly forty years before.
          By the courtesy of General N. S. Elderkin, I had the privilege of
          visiting the State Normal School at Potsdam, and was very much
          pleased with the institution. The visit improvements which have
          been made in buildings, machinery, roads, transportation, and
          telegraphs, have certainly not been altogether inapplicable to
          the progress of education. When I received my education, an
          ordinary school master received nine dollars a month, and twelve
          if he was a first class teacher; and he could cut blue beech
          switches enough in a day, and perhaps less, to thrash the
          scholars the entire winter, and they were applied very freely. I
          used to think I got more than my share. I thought I could not
          watch the schoolmaster as well as some others, my eyes were not
          quite so good. But I noticed on my visit a very desirable change
          in their school government; the cultivation of the mind is the
          object sought now, and the teacher has become the friend as well
          as the preceptor of the pupil. The blue beech seems to be pretty
          well banished, and there is a marked improvement in the whole
          system of education, as well as in telegraphing, railroading,
          machinery, and architectural works generally.
          I met several of my old schoolfellows, who were glad to see me,
          and treated me with courtesy. Among these I should mention
          General Elderkin, a man of influence and who never, in the
          darkest hour of our persecutions, has failed to recognize me as
          an old schoolfellow and friend, notwithstanding he had high
          religious notions. I met other gentlemen of this kind.
          We are all passing to the tomb, and we want to leave a good
          record, that is, one that will be pleasing to the Lord. It is not
          a very lofty ambition for a man to spend his life so as to have
          it recorded on his tombstone that he died worth a million
          dollars; but if he spend his life in doing good, that will be a
          record that will be to his everlasting honor, and will prove to
          him treasure in heaven. People say, "you Mormons believe all will
          be damned except yourselves." We know for ourselves that this is
          the work of God, and we know that every Latter-day Saint that is
          faithful to his profession and calling will attain to celestial
          glory. We also further know that God has extended, in his order,
          to all the human race, glory, honor, immortality and blessings in
          accordance with their works, whether good or evil. Read the
          vision in the Book of Covenants, and the 15th chapter of Paul's
          epistle to the Corinthians, and judge for yourselves; and while
          we should struggle to obtain the greater blessings, we should
          never disparage those who may fall short of attaining the highest
          glory. There is a glory of the sun, the Apostle informs us, also
          a glory of the moon, and a glory of the stars, and as one star
          differeth from another, so do these different degrees of glory
          differ. But in these various glories will be found all
          denominations and all honorable men--every one in accordance with
          those things which he has done in this life; and, says the
          Savior, "Suffer little children to come unto me, for of such is
          the kingdom of heaven."
          As I passed by the site of the old academy, I said to General
          Elderkin, "There I received my Presbyterian baptism." "So did I,"
          said he. I did not wish to raise a question in relation to the
          subject with him at all. He is now, I believe, a member of the
          Episcopal Church, and I, of course, am a Latter-day Saint; but
          the man who sprinkled the water on our foreheads, taught that
          hell was full of infants not a span long. The idea was horrible
          to me from the time I first heard it. "Suffer little children to
          come unto me, for of such is the kingdom of heaven," says the
          Savior; and if we live in the sight of God as innocent, pure and
          holy as little children, we shall attain to the glory of the sun.
          May God enable us to do so through Jesus our Redeemer. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 / Orson
          Pratt, August 4, 1872
                             Orson Pratt, August 4, 1872
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER ORSON PRATT,
           Delivered in the Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, Sunday Afternoon,
                                   August 4, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          Sometimes I am in the habit of taking a text, but at present
          there is no passage of Scripture which presents itself to my
          mind; I therefore, commence speaking and, through your faith and
          prayers before the Lord, I trust that something may be given to
          me that will edify, and benefit the congregation. The subjects
          pertaining to the kingdom of God are so numerous that, sometimes
          the great difficulty in the mind of a servant of God who attempts
          to address the people is to know the mind and will of the Spirit
          in regard to what shall be said. If I know my own heart, I have
          no desire to speak my own words or to impart unto you my own
          natural wisdom; but it is the earnest desire of my heart that I
          may impart instruction according to the mind and the will of the
          living God. This I can not do unless God shall grant unto me the
          inspiration of his Spirit at the very moment, and this will
          depend in a great measure upon the hearers as well as upon the
          speaker. If the people have faith in God, and pray unto him,
          exercising that faith, he may give them something that will be
          instructive to their minds; but if they have not faith the Lord
          may not see proper thus to impart.
          We are permitted, Latter-day Saints, to live in a very peculiar
          fulness of times. Many dispensations have been revealed to the
          inhabitants of the earth in past ages, and God has given, from
          time to time, since the creation, much instruction to the people.
          What I mean by a dispensation, is power, authority and revelation
          given from Heaven to direct and counsel men here on the earth.
          This has been given at different ages of the world, and the
          instruction which God has given has been in accordance with the
          circumstances of the people, the revelations and instructions
          which he has given being different at one period from those given
          at another. When I say different, do not misunderstand me. Many
          of the revelations of God are unchangeable in their nature, and
          are adapted to all dispensations; but many commandments have been
          given that were adapted only to the dispensations in which they
          were revealed. I will name some of these.
          For instance, when some sixteen hundred or two thousand years had
          passed away, from the creation, the world had become very much
          corrupted in the sight of God, so much so that what little
          history we have on the subject informs us that all flesh had
          corrupted its way upon the face of the earth. God gave a new
          commandment in that period, differing entirely from all former
          commandments. It was not adapted to any dispensation that had
          preceded it, neither would it be suitable for any future
          dispensation: it was intended for that particular period only.
          The Lord commanded his servant Noah to build an ark, according to
          certain rules and dimensions that he gave unto him, for, said the
          Lord, "I intend to destroy all flesh with a flood, except those
          who shall gather together into the ark which you shall build."
          This was a new commandment. If there had been any sectarian
          preachers who then lived, and perhaps there were-for preachers
          who have not been sent of God seem to have been numerous in all
          dispensations--they would perhaps have reasoned with Noah in
          relation to this new revelation and commandment, and said to him,
          "What is the use now, of getting new revelation from God? You
          will not dispute, Noah, but what Enoch was saved and translated
          to heaven. He had enough revelation to save him, and can not we
          be saved in the same manner that he was, without having any new
          revelation communicated to us?" I mention this, because such
          arguments are used at the present day in reference to the new
          revelations which the Latter-day Saints carry forth to the world.
          The people say, "You believe in the Book of Mormon as a new
          revelation, and that God has given new commandments. Have we not
          enough? Were not the people who lived in the days of Enoch,
          Abraham, Moses and the Prophets, in the days of Jesus and the
          Apostles, saved? And if they had enough to save them, if we
          follow the instructions which they received, what is the use of
          obtaining another book, called the Book of Mormon, or new
          commandments and revelations?" This has been brought forth as an
          argument ever since my youth to my certain knowledge, in all
          countries where I have traveled and attempted to communicate to
          the world our ideas about new revelation. The same arguments
          might have been used in the days of the flood--"Enough has been
          given; Enoch has been saved and translated, and if we follow the
          revelations given to him, why may we not be saved without having
          any thing new?" But Noah would have answered, and very properly
          too, "God designs to accomplish something now that he did not
          accomplish in the days of Enoch, nor in the days of Abel and
          Seth, nor in the days of any of those ancient worthies--he
          intends to bring destruction on all flesh that will not repent,
          by overwhelming this world of ours in a flood of water. He
          intends to pour out his indignation and just wrath upon those who
          corrupt themselves in his sight; and he has provided a particular
          way of escape therefrom, by which you may, if you will, be saved
          from this judgment, and that way has to be made known by new
          revelation." We will pass on, however.
          Soon after the days of Noah, we find that certain men lived upon
          the earth, whose names are recorded in this sacred history (the
          Bible), who were called to be the chosen servants of God, and
          whom the Lord blessed in a peculiar manner. I refer now to the
          Patriarchs, and more especially to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob,
          three very worthy men, so worthy that the Lord chose them as
          representatives of the faithful in all future ages, and declared
          that all who should be saved in future ages should become their
          seed, either springing directly from their loins, or being
          adopted, through the Gospel, into the family of Abraham, who was
          to be called the father of the faithful: that is the father not
          only of the faithful who lived from his day until the coming of
          Christ, but of all who should live after Christ who followed in
          the footsteps of this ancient Patriarch and embraced the same
          Gospel that he taught, and they should have a claim on the
          promises that were made to him.
          Now, did the Patriarch Abraham receive anything new from God, or
          was there enough already given? Perhaps many may cry, "Enough to
          save Noah, Enoch, Abel, and all persons who would walk before the
          Lord according to ancient revelation, without anything new." But
          there was not enough adapted to the circumstances by which
          Abraham was surrounded. Why? Because the Lord designed to call
          Abraham out from his father's house, from his friends and
          country, and to lead him into a strange land. Abraham might have
          searched all former records and revelations, but here was a duty
          he never could have learned therefrom--"Depart from thy father's
          house!" it could not be found written in former revelations,
          hence the circumstances required new revelation, and God gave it
          by commanding this great man--the father of the faithful--to
          leave the land of Chaldea and to go forth into a country where he
          never had been. Abraham was obedient, he went forth and traveled
          to the country that we call Palestine--a small territory east of
          the Mediterranean Sea. And having arrived in that land, he might
          have searched all former revelations in vain to have learned what
          his duty was then, for there were certain duties required of him
          then in regard to which the revelation given to him in his native
          land did not enlighten him. One of these duties was to go forth
          upon a certain eminence or mountain in Canaan. He did as he was
          taught. It was a peculiar commandment. I have never been
          commanded to do so, neither has any other person in this
          congregation; neither was any person who lived before Abraham;
          but he, and he alone needed new revelation to find out that he
          was to go to the top of a certain mountain. When he got there
          another new revelation was given to him, commanding him to look
          to the east, then to the west; and then to cast his eyes to the
          north, and to the south, and then, behold, a great promise was
          made to him by new revelation, namely, "All the land which thou
          seest shall be given to thee and thy seed after thee for an
          everlasting possession." No such promise could he have found in
          any former revelation: this promise was adapted to that peculiar
          individual, and to the circumstances in which he was placed.
          We would imagine that Isaac, having his father's revelations
          right before his eyes, and knowing all about them, would say in
          his heart, "I need not trouble myself about inquiring from God
          and receiving anything new from the heavens. My father was a good
          man; he was saved, and I shall content myself by giving heed to
          the old revelations." But Isaac did not reason in this way; and
          the Lord had some new revelation to communicate to the son of
          Abraham, and one of them was to confirm the promise that had been
          made to his father. One might naturally suppose that the
          revelation made to his father was broad enough and covered the
          case without being confirmed, for it declared that the land
          promised to Abraham should be given to him and to his seed after
          him, and we might suppose that that included Isaac, and that
          there was no need of a new revelation to him on the subject; but
          if it did include him, Isaac was not fully satisfied, he would
          not place his dependence on something that had been said to some
          other man, but wanted to know for himself whether God intended
          him to possess that land, and there was no way for him to obtain
          this knowledge except by direct communication with the heavens.
          He obtained it, God renewing the promise to him that he had made
          to his father Abraham.
          By and by comes along the grandson of Abraham--Jacob, who, not
          satisfied with the promises made to his grandfather and his
          father--Abraham and Isaac, and not considering himself safe to
          depend on promises made to somebody else, came before the Lord
          and plead with him, and the angels of God came and visited this
          lad, and he saw a ladder reaching from the ground on which he
          slept to the very heavens, upon which the angels were ascending
          and descending; and he, on that occasion, obtained a confirmation
          of the promise made to his father and grandfather.
          It is unnecessary for me to trace the history of these
          patriarchs, or to mention the various times when God thought fit
          to communicate a new revelation unto them, according to the
          circumstances in which they were placed. We might relate the
          revelations given to Jacob after he went down into the country of
          Laban, where he married his four wives. We might relate to you
          the various revelations God gave to him during his sojourn in
          that land. We might also relate to you the revelations he
          received after he left that country with his four wives and his
          children. When he came to the brook Jabbok, sending over all his
          family before him, he stopped back, and the Lord condescended to
          give him a new revelation. An angel came down, and Jacob and this
          person laid hold of each other, the same as men do occasionally
          now, to try each other's strength, in what is termed wrestling.
          These two persons wrestled together all night long. The angel did
          not see proper to take any advantage of Jacob by miracle, but he
          wrestled with him as one man would another; and it seems that
          neither of them overcame the other. The angel did not succeed in
          throwing Jacob to the ground, neither did Jacob succeed in
          throwing the angel to the ground; but after contending together
          all night, the angel at last put forth his finger and touched the
          hollow of Jacob's thigh and lamed him a little, and by this means
          was enabled to overcome him. After being thus lamed, Jacob found
          that he had been wrestling with an angel of God, and, said he, "I
          will not let thee go unless thou bless me," and God, through the
          mouth of that angel, gave to him the same great and glorious
          promises that he had given to his father, and also blessed him as
          a prince, because he had power to wrestle with an angel all night
          and prevailed with him.
          Some suppose that this was the first conversion of Jacob; but, be
          this as it may, Jacob, prior to this time, had many great
          revelations from God. After wrestling in this manner on one side
          of the brook Jabbok, he started the next day to overtake his
          family, and he placed his four wives and their children in a
          certain order, preparatory to meeting his brother Esau. By and by
          Esau comes along with quite an army of men, and he meets the
          forward company, consisting of Bilhah and Zilpah and their
          children--two of Jacob's wives and their polygamous offspring. He
          continues on until he meets Jacob's third wife, and finally he
          comes to the fourth and her children, with whom Jacob was, and
          turning to Jacob he says, "Who are all these women and children?"
          Jacob answered, "These are they whom God hath given thy servant."
          What! God give to Jacob more than one wife, and a number of
          polygamous children! Is that so? Well, Jacob says so, and we are
          informed that he was then converted, that this meeting between
          Jacob and Esau took place, and this declaration of Jacob was made
          after his conversion at the book Jabbok. Now, would you suppose
          that a converted man would make such a declaration about his
          wives and children as Jacob made to Esau, if it had not been
          true? If a man now-a-days declares that God has given him more
          wives than one, and a host of polygamous children, he is accused
          of blasphemy, yet Jacob, after wrestling with an angel, declared
          that such was the case with him: he knew it was so and he
          acknowledged the hand of God. After he reached the land of Canaan
          we find that God continued to give to this man revelation after
          revelation, suited to the circumstances; and thus we may trace
          the history of the dispensations of God to man.
          I will now tough, in short, upon the history of Moses, who lived
          several hundred years after Jacob--at a period when circumstances
          called for commandments and revelations different to any that had
          ever been given before. After having slain the Egyptian, Moses
          fled from the house of Pharaoh, and went down into the land of
          Midian, and dwelt there forty years. At a certain time, when he
          was herding the flocks of his father-in-law, Jethro, he saw a
          bush burning with a very brilliant flame. This excited his
          curiosity, and he drew near, and saw the bush apparently burning,
          and yet not consumed. As he drew nearer God spoke to him out of
          the burning bush, and told him to take the shoes from his feet
          for the place on which he stood was holy ground. He never could
          have found out by former revelation that the ground whereon he
          stood was holy. This God, who appeared in the burning bush, or
          the angel, as the case may be, had something for Moses to do that
          he could not possibly learn from former revelation, and that
          something was to arise and go down into Egypt and deliver God's
          people--the descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob--from the
          hands of their enemies. Do you not see that it required new
          revelation to inform him of this fact? He was obedient to the
          commandment, for taking Aaron with him, he went down into Egypt
          and stood before the king, and then commenced a series of new
          revelations that were wonderful and marvelous in their nature.
          The revelations of to-day, however, would not suit to-morrow, and
          those of to-morrow would not suit the next day. Why? Because God
          had something new to perform every day, and that which was given
          yesterday would not be adapted to the work God saw fit to perform
          to-day or to-morrow, hence, as often as the day rolled round new
          revelation had to be given to Moses to make known to him what the
          Lord required at his hand, what his mission was, what he was to
          do in the house of Pharaoh and before all the Egyptians. Having
          accomplished these wonders, by new revelation, Moses and the
          whole house of Israel, some twenty-five hundred thousand in
          number, left the land of Egypt and came forth to the eastern
          border of the Red Sea.
          If there had been sectarians in that large company, they would
          doubtless have reasoned with Moses on this wise: "Moses, what an
          abundance of revelation God has given in former times, and have
          we not enough for our guidance now?" I say if there had been
          Baptists, Methodists, Presbyterians, members of the Church of
          England, or of any of the several hundred different sects into
          which Christendom is now separated, this would have been their
          argument, for their argument now is--"We have enough, and do not
          need any more." But Moses and the children of Israel were not
          influenced by such considerations, for they were placed in
          circumstances that required something new. The Red Sea was before
          them, and there were mountains on the south and on the north, an
          on the west the Egyptians were pursuing them, and the inquiry
          with them was "What shall we do?" God gave them revelation. He
          did not tell them to search previous revelations for that was all
          that was necessary, but he gave them revelation telling them what
          to do, and that revelation was, "Stand still, and see the
          salvation of God?" If they had not got this new revelation they
          might have been so confused that, instead of standing still, some
          would have run for one mountain, and some for another, some this
          way and some that; but a new revelation made them understand that
          their duty, instead of fleeing, was to stand still and see the
          salvation that God would work out for them. Moses was commanded
          to smite the waters of the Red Sea, and he did so, and they were
          parted asunder by the power of the Almighty and, as we are
          informed in another place, they stood up like walls on either
          side of the path on which the children of Israel traveled through
          the midst of the sea. We would naturally suppose that water would
          not do this, but it was a miracle wrought by the power of the
          Almighty. He placed the waters, like solid walls on each side of
          his people, and they walked through dry shod, while the Egyptian
          army, in trying to pursue them, were overthrown in the midst of
          the sea.
          Then comes another new revelation--given by inspiration--to sing
          how the Lord had overthrown the enemies of his people, how the
          Lord had magnified his great power and preserved his people from
          the Egyptian nation, and delivered them from bondage. The hosts
          of Israel traveled along from the shores of the Red Sea until
          they came to the foot of Mount Sinai, where, by new revelation,
          they camped; and at a certain time, the Lord, by new revelation,
          called Moses up into the mount; and when he got there the Lord
          saw fit to write a certain code of laws on tables of stone, and,
          after keeping Moses in the mount forty days and forty nights, he
          sent him down, and when he got down he found that the children of
          Israel had corrupted themselves in the sight of the Most High,
          for they had made unto themselves gods, certain golden calves,
          and they were worshipping them. Aaron had caused the people to
          strip themselves naked, and they were dancing around the calves.
          Moses was very angry, not with that kind of anger which fills the
          bosoms of foolish men and women; but that principle of justice
          which burns in the bosom of the Almighty, burned in the bosom of
          Moses, and he threw down the tables of the covenant which he had
          brought from Mount Sinai, and they were smashed to pieces. He
          called for those on the Lord's side to come out from the midst of
          that company and stand with him, at the same time commanding them
          to gird on their swords and put to death those who were not for
          the Lord. That was a new revelation, and a curious one, was it
          not? After all this had taken place, the Lord called Moses a
          second time up into the mount by new revelation, and again gave
          him tables of stone and laws written thereon. He kept him there
          the second time forty days and forty nights, without eating or
          drinking anything. One would suppose that he could not have stood
          so long a period of fasting--eighty days and eighty nights, forty
          each time. When he had obtained the tables the second time he
          came down and stood before the children of Israel, and his
          countenance shone with such brightness that they were filled with
          fear, and fled from before the presence of Moses. They could not
          endure the glory of his countenance, and they besought Moses that
          the presence of the Lord might not be made manifest in their
          midst. "Do you, Moses, go and talk with the Lord. You can
          converse with him, and let us know what the Lord says, but do not
          let the Lord come and converse with us, lest we be destroyed." We
          find that they had so corrupted themselves in the sight of God
          that he, who would have delighted to converse with all the
          people, as one man talks with another, was obliged to hide his
          presence from them, and to send Moses to teach them. Moreover
          their corruptions had become so great that the Lord, in his
          wrath, swore that they should not enter into his rest. This was
          made known to them by new revelation while in the wilderness, or
          they never could have learned it. The Lord also informed them
          that he would not go up in the midst of their camps. Said he, "I
          will not go up in the midst of this people, because they have
          corrupted themselves in my sight, lest I break forth and consume
          them in a moment;" "but," said he, "I will send an angel before
          you, and you must hearken to his voice, but my presence shall not
          go with you, you are too corrupt." By and by we find that an
          angel was left with them, and a cloud by day, and the shining of
          a flaming fire by night, guided all their camps. The voice and
          presence of the Lord wore made manifest to Moses, and Moses
          conversed with the Lord as one man talks with another, and during
          forty years in the wilderness he from time to time received
          revelations and communications to guide the people. Do you not
          see that under these circumstances, during the whole of that
          forty years, there was not one year--probably not one month, and
          it may be, not one day but what new revelation was necessary? The
          code of laws given on Mount Sinai was not sufficient without new
          We might trace the history of the people of God, in we had time,
          but I see we have not, from the days of Moses to the days of
          Joshua, Gideon, Samuel, Barak and various other ancient worthies,
          all of whom received revelation. If we come to the days of Gideon
          we find that he was a man who had seventy sons, and how many
          daughters, I do not know. The Lord conversed with Gideon and sent
          an angel to him to tell him that he would raise him up as a
          mighty man of valor, to go forth in his might and in his strength
          to deliver his people Israel from bondage. We might relate all
          these things to show forth that the bondage of the children of
          Israel called forth new revelation from heaven, and that because
          of it the Lord spoke to and commanded his servants what to do for
          the deliverance of that people; and if he called upon a man who
          had so many wives and children, he did not consider that that man
          was a criminal and unworthy of receiving communication from him,
          but on the contrary, it is clear that the Lord considered him the
          most worthy man in all Israel, and on that account he sent his
          angel to him. And this noted polygamist, of all the thousands of
          Israel was entrusted with the mission of delivering that people
          from their enemies. God wrought special miracles by his hand in
          order to accomplish this great work, though he was a polygamist.
          But we will pass on, and come down for some two thousand years to
          the days of our Savior. One would naturally suppose that when the
          Son of God himself came from his father's glory to dwell here on
          the earth in the flesh, and began to teach by the power of the
          Holy Ghost, the things of his father, that during the three and a
          half years of his ministry among the people, they, of course,
          could say, "Now we do not need any more revelation we have
          enough; the Son of God, of whom our law, its ordinances and
          sacrifices were typical, has at last come and has offered himself
          on the cross, and having finished the work given him to do, is
          there any more need for new revelation?" The conduct of the
          Apostles is the best answer that can be given to this, for we
          find them, like all their predecessors, from the days of Adam
          until their day, seeking from time to time for guidance by new
          revelation. We read of Philip going to the city of Samaria,
          preaching there awhile and baptizing men and women; but not
          having the authority to administer in the higher ordinance of the
          laying on of hands, the Christians at Jerusalem, hearing that
          Samaria had received the word of God, sent Peter and John to
          administer the ordinance of the laying on of hands for the higher
          baptism of fire and the Holy Ghost. When Peter and John reached
          Samaria they found there was great joy among the people, for many
          of them had been converted; but their joy was not because of the
          baptism of the Holy Ghost, for the next verse says, "For as yet
          he was fallen on none of them," only they had been baptized in
          the name of the Lord Jesus, but neither man nor woman had
          received the baptism of fire and the Holy Ghost. But the Apostles
          laid their hands on them and the Holy Ghost fell on them.
          Now, here was Philip in the city of Samaria. He had preached the
          Gospel there, where should he go next? He had probably fulfilled
          all the duties required of him there. He was not hired to preach
          in that city for so much a year, and to stay there to the end of
          his days. No, he needed a new revelation. All the revelations
          that Jesus had given were not sufficient to guide Philip in
          regard to his next duty, the Lord, therefore sent an angel to him
          to tell him to go down into the south country. He never would
          have learned this fact by any former revelation. While Philip was
          on his way to the south he saw a chariot before him, and here
          again a new revelation was given to him--"Draw thyself near to
          that chariot." He did so, and having taught the Gospel to its
          occupant, as they rode along, they came to some water and, the
          man having believed what Philip had said, wanted to be baptized.
          The chariot stood still, and Philip and the eunuch both went down
          into the water, and the eunuch was baptized, and they came forth
          out of the water. Now then, how could Philip know but what it was
          his duty on that occasion to still speak with the eunuch, get
          into the carriage and ride along with him and give him further
          instructions? But no, the Lord had something else for him to do,
          and the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, and he found
          himself at Azotus. I do not know whether or not this Spirit
          actually caught up Philip, body and spirit, and wafted him
          quickly from the place where the eunuch was baptized to the city
          of Azotus. I should not be surprised, however, if this was the
          case, for we have something very similar in the Old Testament
          Scriptures, and the promise is that they who wait on the Lord
          shall mount as it were on eagle's wings, and they shall run and
          not be weary, and walk and not faint. I do not know but this was
          the case with Philip. At any rate, the Spirit of the Lord carries
          people, by new revelation, whithersoever he will.
          On another occasion we find that Barnabas and Saul, not having
          inquired of the Lord concerning their duties, but they probably
          had been reading the Old Scriptures, which were sufficient for
          instruction for righteousness, and to make the man of God
          thoroughly perfect to every good work. I say that probably
          Barnabas and Saul had been reading these, and having failed to
          inquire of the Lord, and to get new revelation, they started out
          with the design of going to a certain city, but the Lord checked
          them. Said he, "Do not go there!" How important it was to get new
          revelation! "Do not you go to that city, I have another work for
          you to perform;" and they were then told where to go. Talk to the
          Christian ministers to-day, or to any that have lived for
          centuries past, and if they had made up their minds to go to any
          place, they would never think of the Lord checking them, or
          forbidding them to go, by new revelation, for they all say that
          the canon of Scripture is full, and that no more new revelation
          is needed.
          Many other instances of a similar character might be named, but
          time will not permit. We find, however, that, after all that God
          revealed through Jesus, and to the Apostles, for ninety-six years
          in the first century of the Christian era, they had not enough,
          and the Lord then gave the book of John's prophecy on the Isle of
          Patmos. John was commanded to write it on parchment, and in this
          book a great many new revelations were promised to be given in
          the latter times. One of these was that an angel should come from
          heaven having the everlasting Gospel to preach to all people,
          nations, kindreds and tongues, declaring that the hour of God's
          judgment had come. Here was a promise or prediction that a new
          revelation should be given by an angel from heaven, and so
          important should it be that it should be proclaimed to a every
          creature under heaven. A great many people say, "We have the
          everlasting Gospel in this book--the Bible--called the canon of
          Scripture, collected together by the monks, cardinals, bishops
          and great men of the Roman Catholic Church, some four centuries
          after Christ. They bound together in this volume all the books
          they had that they did not condemn, and they declared that this
          was enough, and there was no need of the Lord saying anything
          more. But these very Scriptures themselves contradict their
          compilers--those wicked men who sat in judgment on the word of
          God, setting aside this book and that book, this manuscript and
          that manuscript, and binding the remainder together. I say that
          they put some things into this very book, which prove that God
          would again make known his will to the children of men in latter
          times; that he would again give new revelation, not for the
          benefit of one or two individuals, but for the benefit of his
          creatures universally.
          Notwithstanding we have the Gospel written here in this book, yet
          that Gospel, without the power and authority to administer its
          ordinances, is a dead letter. We might believe the Gospel, we
          might believe that Jesus is the Christ by reading this book, we
          could repent of our sins by reading the proclamation of
          repentance here recorded; but we could not be baptized for the
          remission of our sins, neither could we have hands laid upon us
          for the baptism of the Holy Ghost by reading, and that is part
          and portion of the Gospel of the Son of God, just as much as the
          written word that proclaims these things to the children of men.
          Take away the power and authority to administer that word, and
          you at once leave the dead letter of the Gospel, and it would
          benefit none of the children of men, so far as obeying it is
          concerned. They might be benefited by repenting and believing,
          and so on, but they could not embrace the Gospel, they could not
          get into the kingdom of God, for "except a man is born of the
          water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God." You
          could not be born of the water unless there was a man authorized
          by new revelation to administer the baptism of water, neither
          could you receive the baptism of the Holy Ghost only by the
          ordinance God has instituted; hence the necessity of the
          restoration of the authority to administer the ordinances of the
          Gospel, and this is why God has restored it after the earth has
          been without it for seventeen hundred years. No man among all the
          nations, kindreds and tongues of the earth, during that time, has
          had this authority, neither the authority to administer the
          Lord's supper, which is a part of the Gospel, neither in any
          other ordinance.
          God having foreseen this long period of darkness, foretold by the
          mouth of the revelator, St. John, that he would send an angel
          from heaven with the everlasting Gospel, and when that angel came
          and committed that Gospel to man on the earth, it should be
          proclaimed to all people under heaven, the same as the Elders of
          this Church are now doing it. The book of Mormon, containing the
          everlasting Gospel as it was published to the ancient inhabitants
          of America, has been brought forth by the power of God, and his
          servants have been sent forth to preach it, and, not only to
          preach it, but, having authority to administer its ordinances;
          yet the world tell us we need no more revelation, we have enough
          if we only follow the Scriptures, which Paul said to Timothy were
          sufficient to save him. But in the Christian world you can not be
          saved by following the Scriptures, from the fact that you cannot
          follow them without authority from God to administer the
          ordinances. You be baptized by a man having no authority by new
          revelation from heaven, and your baptism is illegal, and your
          pretended adoption into the kingdom of God is not acknowledged in
          heaven, for God has not authorized the administrator, and what he
          has done in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, cannot
          be sealed and recorded in heaven for your benefit. No wonder,
          then, that the world has dwelt in darkness for so many centuries,
          for the earth has become so corrupt, and the heavens have
          apparently become as brass over the heads of the nations. No
          Prophet, no angel, no inspiration, no Revelator, no man of God to
          say, "thus saith the Lord God" unto the people. No wonder, then,
          that the Lord, before the great day of the coming of his beloved
          Son from the heavens, should send an angel to prepare the way
          before his face! This he has done, and the proclamation is going
          forth, saying to all people, nations and tongues, "God has sent
          an angel, and he has sent him to prepare you and us for the great
          day of the coming of the Son of Man, wherein there will be more
          revelations given than have ever been given in all former
          Tell about the canon of Scripture being complete, what nonsense!
          What absurdity! Where is there any proof of any such thing? God
          has yet to give revelation enough to fill the earth with his
          knowledge as the waters cover the great deep. He has yet to pour
          out his spirit upon all flesh that dwells on the face of the
          earth, and make a revelator, prophet, or prophetess of every man
          and woman living, and if all their revelations are written, this
          book, the Bible, will be like a primer compared with them. "In
          the last days, " saith God, by the mouth of the Prophet Joel, "I
          will pour out my spirit upon all flesh. Your sons and your
          daughters shall prophecy, and upon my servants and my handmaidens
          in those days will I pour out of my Spirit, and they shall
          prophecy. Your old men shall dream dreams and your young men
          shall see visions." Supposing they write their dreams as Daniel
          wrote his, and suppose they write their visions as Isaiah wrote
          his, and suppose they write their prophecies as all the Prophets
          have written theirs, would they not be just as sacred as this
          canon of Scripture? I say they would. I would be bound just as
          much to receive the revelations of each man and woman among all
          flesh as I would those of a person who lived two or three
          thousand years ago. A revelation given to a living man in my day
          is just as sacred as one given to a man who has been dead some
          three thousand years. God is a consistent being, and he reveals
          himself according to his own mind and will, and in the last
          dispensation he will continue to reveal line upon line, precept
          upon precept, here a little and there a little, bringing forth a
          record here, unfolding the history of another people there,
          bringing to light the bible of the ten tribes who have been
          absent from the land of Canaan for almost three thousand years.
          Their bible has got to be brought to light, and when they return
          they will bring their written revelations, prophecies, visions
          and dreams with them, and we shall have the bible of the ten
          tribes, as well as the bible of the ancient Israelites who lived
          on this continent, and the bible of the Jews on the eastern
          continent, and these bibles will be united in one, and even then
          the people will not have enough revelation. No, every man and
          every woman will have to be a revelator and prophet, and the
          knowledge and glory of God will cover the earth as the waters
          cover the bosom of the great deep. And by and by, as a kind of
          climax to all this, the revelation of the Lord Jesus himself will
          take place from heaven in flaming fire, to take vengeance on them
          that know not God, and that obey not the Gospel. That will be a
          revelation that the wicked can not abide, a revelation too great
          for them, and that will pierce them to their inmost soul. That
          will be a revelation that will consume them in their wickedness,
          as stumble is consumed before the devouring flame, and he will
          reign here, king of kings and lord of lords for a thousand years.
          Do you suppose that he will give no new revelation during that
          time, but that he will sit on his throne like the idols in some
          of the heathen nations? Do you suppose that the Lord Jesus, that
          intelligent being, by whom the Father made the worlds, is coming
          here to reign king of kings, and to sit down on his throne in the
          temple at Jerusalem, and upon his throne in his temple in Zion,
          and abide there as a statue from generation to generation, for a
          thousand years, and when the people come up to ask him a question
          that he will not say a word, only to tell them they have enough?
          Do you suppose this will be the case? Oh no, my friends, the Lord
          Jesus will converse the whole thousand years with his people, and
          give them instruction. He will reign over the house of David,
          over the children of Israel, over the twelve tribes, over Zion
          and over all the inhabitants of the earth, that is over all who
          are spared in that day, giving counsel here, instructions yonder,
          revealing something there, and so on, and the amount of
          revelation that will be given during the thousand years will no
          doubt be ten thousand times more than is contained in this Bible,
          and yet say the world "No more revelation!"
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 / George
          Q. Cannon, July 14, 1872
                           George Q. Cannon, July 14, 1872
                         DISCOURSE BY ELDER GEORGE Q. CANNON,
                  Delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                          Sunday Afternoon, July 14, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                                       BY IT.
          I will read a portion of the 3rd chapter of St. John:--
          "There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of
          the Jews;
          The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we
          know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do
          these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him.
          Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto
          thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of
          Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old?
          can he enter the second time into his mother's womb, and be born?
          Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be
          born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom
          of God.
          That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born
          of the Spirit is spirit.
          Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.
          The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound
          thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh and whither it
          goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.
          Nicodemus answered and said unto him, How can these things be?
          Jesus answered and said unto him, Art thou a master of Israel,
          and knowest not these things?
          Verily, verily, I say unto thee, We speak that we do know, and
          testify that we have seen; and ye receive not our witness.
          If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall
          ye believe if I tell you of heavenly things?"
          In listening this morning to the remarks of Elder Schonfeldt, on
          the everlasting Gospel as preached by the Elders of the Church of
          Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, he stated in substance that
          none could receive salvation outside this Church, and outside the
          Priesthood which God had restored to the Church. He did not
          explain--had not time, probably, or his mind was carried away on
          some other points, how, or why it is that salvation can only be
          obtained in the way that God, our heavenly Father, has
          prescribed. Many, doubtless, who listen to the Elders of this
          Church, when speaking upon the principles of life and salvation,
          have come to the conclusion, when they have not thoroughly
          understood the principles and the system as they are set forth,
          that we are an exceedingly exclusive and uncharitable people for
          believing that only a very few out of the large mass of human
          beings who have peopled the earth will be saved, while the great
          majority--those who are outside the pale of the Church of Jesus
          Christ of Latter-day Saints--will go down to an endless hell.
          The reason, probably, that these ideas are entertained by many
          who have heard our Elders preach, is because they have drawn
          deductions from the preaching they have heard, imagining that our
          views of the sayings of the Scriptures corresponded with theirs,
          and that it necessarily followed that all who failed to render
          obedience to the ordinances of the Gospel, as we preach them,
          would go down to that endless hell in which so many of the sects
          believe. But any person entertaining such ideas does us, or
          rather the Gospel that we preach, great injustice. We believe
          that God, our heavenly Father, is a God of perfect justice, a God
          of mercy, a God filled with long-suffering and tender compassion
          towards all the works of his hands. We could not, with our views
          respecting the character of God, believe as our friends imagine
          with regard to the destiny of those who die outside of this
          Church, for that would be incompatible with and contrary to all
          that we understand concerning the character of our God--the God
          who is revealed in the Bible, and the Father of our Lord and
          Savior Jesus Christ.
                 We believe, as Jesus said, that "this is condemnation,
          that light has come into the world, and men love darkness rather
          than light because their deeds are evil." This is the
          condemnation under which mankind will suffer--the condemnation
          will follow the rejection of light by those to whom it may be
          sent in every nation and age of the world; in other words, we
          believe that where there is no law, there is no
          transgression--where men and women haven not had the Gospel, or
          the principles of salvation, communicated unto them, they cannot
          be held accountable for disobeying the same. It is a truth that
          has been enforced by all who have understood the Gospel, that
          those to whom the Gospel is revealed must obey it, or
          condemnation follows. Condemnation did not fall upon the
          inhabitants of the antediluvian world until Noah had taught unto
          them the will of God. Noah, commanded of God, went forth as a
          preacher, of righteousness, declaring to the people the judgments
          that were about to come upon them; and God so inspired, directed
          and strengthened him that he was enabled to warn the people to
          such an extent that they were left without excuse, so much so
          that God felt justified in sending the flood upon the earth.
          This has been the course the Almighty has pursued in every age
          when his judgments have been poured out upon the people--he has
          sent Prophets to warn them and to tell them how they might escape
          the calamities threatened. This was so with the Jews, unto whom
          the Son of God came. He proclaimed the Gospel unto them, and
          warned them of coming judgments, had he sent his disciples
          through all Jewry, doing the same. You all remember the Savior's
          pathetic lament over Jerusalem, when he said he would have
          gathered her people as a hen gathereth her chickens under her
          wing, but they would not receive him as a messenger of salvation,
          as the heir and Son of God, empowered to impart unto them
          principles, obedience to which would have secured them life her
          and hereafter. He also pronounced a woe upon many cities of that
          land, and said that if the mighty works which had been done in
          them had been done in Sodom and Gomorrah, their people would have
          repented. But the Jews hardened their hearts, and not only
          rejected his testimony, but they shed his blood, and invoked
          condemnation on their own heads for doing so. History tells us
          that the judgments which Christ and his Apostles had declared did
          descend upon the Jewish nation. Jerusalem was taken, the temple
          thrown down, and the people carried into captivity, and the
          desolation and dreadful woes that had been predicted by the Son
          of God were all fulfilled upon that generation of Jews.
          In these instances we see that God sent messengers to warn the
          people before his judgments were poured out upon them; and we
          also learn that when the Gospel is proclaimed by those having
          authority, if the people reject it they are held to a strict
          accountability therefor, and condemnation inevitably
          follows--there is no escape from it, but it falls in all its
          severity upon those who reject the message of life and salvation
          when proclaimed by those having authority to proclaim it. A
          perusal of this book (the Bible) will convince all who believe in
          it, that it is a most dangerous thing, and attended with the most
          terrible consequences, to reject the message that God gives to
          his authorized servants to proclaim to their fellow-creatures.
          There is no instance of which we read, from the beginning of the
          book to the close thereof, where judgments did not fall upon a
          people if they did not repent of their sins and obey the message
          sent unto them by God. When I say repent, I mean a complete
          forsaking of sin, and turning from it truly and sincerely; in no
          other way can mankind escape the judgments and calamities
          threatened, and of which they are warned.
          In the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ there were certain
          conditions revealed. Mankind were required to obey a certain form
          of doctrine declared unto them, and when they did obey they
          received the blessings. But I have often thought when traveling
          abroad in the nations, how different it is in our day from what
          it was anciently. In our day we see countless numbers of elegant
          spires pointing to heaven, and legions of men preaching what they
          call the Gospel, but the wickedness of the people is unchecked.
          Anciently, when God sent his authorized servants to proclaim his
          Gospel to the people, salvation, on the one hand, followed
          obedience, or, on the other, condemnation followed rejection. And
          these effects did not linger, they were not deferred for
          centuries, but if the people did not repent after hearing the
          message of the servants of God, great calamities quickly
          followed. They could not listen to the authorized servants of God
          for any length of time, and harden their hearts against their
          testimony and warnings, without speedy judgment following. This
          was the case from the days of Noah to the days of John the
          Revelator, and it will be the case in every generation when the
          Gospel of the Son of God, in its purity and fullness, is
          proclaimed to the people, and when God has a Church and
          Priesthood upon the earth which he recognizes. He is the King of
          the earth, he is the Creator of all its inhabitants, and when he
          calls upon the people, and requires them to do anything, they
          must promptly comply, or suffer the terrible consequences of
          their disobedience.
          In the Gospel of Jesus Christ, as I have already remarked, there
          are certain conditions with which the people are expected to
          comply; if they do they receive the blessings, if they do not
          they receive condemnation. Jesus and his Apostles taught that it
          was essential that mankind should believe in him as the Son of
          God--as the only name given under heaven by which men could be
          saved. All mankind were therefore required to believe and to have
          faith in him, and to approach the Father in his name. That was
          the first condition of the gospel as taught by Jesus and his
          The next condition was repentance. All who had committed sin and
          were guilty of wrong of any kind, were required to repent of that
          wrong and to live pure and holy lives. They were not only
          required to be sorry--to have compunctions of conscience for the
          commission of evil, but they were required to forsake it entirely
          and to become new creatures. If they had been dishonest,
          untruthful, unvirtuous, profane; if they had taken advantage of
          their neighbor, borne false witness against him, or encroached
          upon his rights; if, in fact, they had done anything contrary to
          the dictates of the Holy Spirit, or of their consciences when
          enlightened by that Spirit, they were required to repent of and
          forsake the same.
          The third condition of the Gospel was, that parties who had
          believed in Jesus, and had repented of their sins, should take
          some step for the remission of them. Now the penalty of the sin
          that our father Adam committed was death--"In the day that thou
          eatest thereof thou shalt surely die" was the proclamation of the
          Creator; and when Adam sinned he paid the penalty and died, and
          entailed death upon every generation of his posterity, and that
          sleep of death would have been eternal had it not been for the
          death of the Son of God. He came as the Redeemer of the world, he
          died for the sin that had been committed by Adam, he atoned for
          it, and thus ensured to all the family of man redemption from the
          grave or a resurrection of their mortal bodies. But he gave unto
          his disciples a commandment that they should preach remission of
          sins, and that they should administer an ordinance by which all
          obedient believers could obtain remission of sins, and that
          ordinance was baptism. "Not the putting away," as the Apostle
          Paul says, "of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good
          conscience towards God." They were required to submit to this
          ordinance. Jesus taught it, and he, himself, although admittedly
          a pure being, set the example of obedience to it. When John was
          baptizing in the river Jordan, Jesus went to him and requested
          baptism at his hand. John remonstrated with him, saying, "I have
          need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me?" But Jesus
          said, "Suffer it to be so now, for thus it becometh us to fulfil
          all righteousness," and he went down into the water and was
          baptized by John, and the first evidence that we have in the
          Scriptures of his recognition by the Father was on that occasion,
          for after he had been baptized the Holy Spirit descended upon
          him, and a voice was heard bearing testimony to the assembled
          multitude that Jesus was the beloved Son of the Father. He
          therefore set the example himself, so that it could not be said,
          though sinless, that he had not complied with the ordinance which
          he required all the inhabitants of the earth to submit to, and
          which the disciples administered to all repentant believers.
          This prepared them for another ordinance which, we find in the
          scriptures, was administered to all who had complied with the
          conditions of the Gospel which I have named--namely, the laying
          on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost. I have been told
          repeatedly that this ordinance was to be administered only to
          those who were intended for the ministry--it was not designed for
          the members of the Church called laymen. A careful perusal of the
          Scriptures, however, does not sustain this idea; but on the
          contrary, it very clearly sustains the idea that this ordinance
          had to be administered to every one who joined the Church, and
          that without it the Holy Ghost was not bestowed as a gift. To
          prove that this is correct, you have only to read the 8th chapter
          of the Acts of the Apostles, where you will find an account of
          the labors of Philip in the city of Samaria. It seems that Philip
          had power and authority to preach the Gospel and to baptize men
          and women, but not to administer all the ordinances. I have the
          idea that he had the same authority as John the Baptist--the
          authority to baptize, but not to confer the Holy Ghost. We find
          that when John was preaching, he said that there would one come
          after him, whose shoes he was not worthy to bear, who would
          baptize them with the Holy Ghost and with fire. John baptized
          with water, but he did not confer any further gift or
          blessing--he had not the authority so to do. Philip seemed to
          have the same authority, for the sacred writer says that when the
          Apostles of Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the Gospel
          at the hands of Philip, they sent not them two Apostles, for as
          yet, although the Samaritans had been baptized with water, the
          Holy Ghost had not descended upon any of them; and we are told
          that when the Apostles came unto them, they prayed with them, and
          laid their hands upon them, and they received the Holy Ghost.
          Nothing is said about the hands of the Apostles being laid upon
          those only who were intended for the ministry, but the ordinance
          was administered to all who had received baptism at the hands of
          Philip, without distinction of sex or station. 
          Another instance in support of this view we find in the 19th of
          the Acts. We read there that when Paul was passing through the
          upper coasts he came to Ephesus and he found there certain
          disciples who said they had been baptized unto John's baptism,
          but when he asked them if they had received the Holy Ghost they
          said they had not so much as heard of it. Then, we are informed,
          they were baptized in the name of the Lord, and when Paul, who
          had the necessary authority, had laid his hands upon them they
          received the Holy Ghost, and spake with tongues and prophesied.
          Many other proofs on this point might be adduced, but these are
          sufficient. From what has been said we learn that the first
          principle of the Gospel is belief in Jesus Christ; the second
          principle is repentance of sin, and the third, baptism for the
          remission of sins.
          "Ah!" says one, "Cannot I come to the foot of the cross and,
          through the atoning blood of Jesus, have my sins washed away
          without baptism?" I doubt not that hundreds, in various nations
          and generations, who have been in ignorance of the true Gospel,
          and far removed from those who had authority to administer its
          ordinances, have had their sins blotted out. God has looked in
          mercy upon them, and on account of their sincerity has witnessed
          unto them that he accepted the broken spirits and contrite hearts
          which they offered unto him. I cannot doubt this; but wherever
          the Gospel of Jesus Christ is preached in its fullness, none can
          obtain the remission of sins only in the way that God has pointed
          out, and that is by baptism by one having the authority from God
          to administer that ordinance.
          Supposing that I, with the views which I have of the Gospel of
          Jesus Christ, were to-day outside of the church of God, and I
          were to say, "I will not be baptized for the remissions of sins.
          My father or my grandfather was a good Methodist, or a good
          Presbyterian or Baptist, or a good sectarian of some other
          denomination, and he told me that he had experienced a change of
          heart and I believe that he had his sins washed away through the
          atoning blood of Jesus Christ, and on this account I will not
          submit to the ordinance of baptism which is preached to me as
          necessary to salvation, but I will seek for the remission of my
          sins the way my father or grandfather did," how do you think it
          would be with me? Should I obtain the remission of my sins at the
          hands of God? There would be no remission of sins for such an
          individual in this life. Light has come into the world, God has
          revealed to men the true principle by which remission of sins can
          be obtained, namely, baptism, and when that is taught to them and
          they refuse to obey it, condemnation follows, and the blessings
          will be withheld which were granted in days when, in ignorance,
          men taught the Lord in faith and humility and with broken and
          contrite spirits.
          We now come to the fourth and last initiatory principle of the
          Gospel of Jesus Christ--the laying on of hands for the reception
          of the Holy Ghost. "Is it not possible," says one, "for a man to
          receive the Holy Ghost without being baptized for the remission
          of sins, and having hands laid upon him?" Says the reader of
          Scripture, "I recollect that Cornelius, the history of whose
          conversion is contained in the 10th chapter of the Acts, received
          the Holy Ghost, and yet he was not baptized; and if he did, is it
          not possible for others to do the same?" Let those who think so
          read the history very carefully, and they will find that in
          bestowing the Holy Ghost upon Cornelius without baptism, God had
          a purpose in view. Cornelius was the first Gentile unto whom the
          Gospel was preached. The prevalent belief among the disciples,
          and one which they being Jews, had inherited through the
          traditions of their fathers, was that the Gentiles were not to
          have the privilege of enjoying the blessings of the Gospel, they
          were not for them, and the disciples were not disposed to
          administer its ordinances to them. You recollect what Peter said
          when the Holy Ghost descended upon Cornelius--this uncircumcised
          man--and his house, whom they had supposed were without the pale
          of the Gospel--"Who can forbid water, seeing that they have
          received the Holy Ghost as well as we?" Peter cited this bestowal
          of the Holy Ghost upon Cornelius and his house, as a proof that
          the ordinance of baptism should be administered to them, and to
          all believing repentant Gentiles as well as to the house of
          Israel. This, in connection with the vision which Peter had, you
          recollect it, wherein he saw a sheet let down from heaven,
          containing all manner of beasts, clean and unclean, he being
          commanded to arise, kill and eat thereof, had dispossessed his
          mind of the prejudice which he had entertained, in common with
          his fellow believers, that the Gospel was for the Jews only. And
          when he saw Cornelius and his house thus blessed, he inquired of
          his brethren what there was to prevent the ordinance of baptism
          being administered to them, and they were baptized by Peter.
          Cornelius did not say, as many, doubtless, would say to-day, "We
          have received the Holy Ghost, and having obtained this evidence
          of our acceptance with God, what is the use of our being
          baptized? Is it likely that God would have given us the Holy
          Ghost if he had not forgiven our sins? These inquiries, I think,
          would be made by hundreds in our day under such circumstances.
          But not so with Cornelius: he had heard the Gospel preached to
          him by Peter, and though he had received the Holy Ghost, he
          believed it was still necessary for him to be baptized in water
          for the remission of his sins, and he complied with that
          ordinance, and then doubtless the hands of the servants of God
          were laid upon him to confirm him a member of the Church and to
          seal upon him the blessing of the Holy Ghost, that he might be
          led and guided by it into all truth.
          This, my brethren and sisters, is the only plan of salvation
          taught in the Scriptures. There is no other way given by which
          men can be saved. It is the way that Jesus trod, the way that his
          Apostles walked in, it is the doctrine they taught, and when it
          is taught by those having authority from God to teach it, the
          Holy Ghost will follow the administration of these ordinances.
          The ancient gifts and blessings will be bestowed, and men will be
          led into all truth, the power of God will be with them, and they
          will know God for themselves, for he is the same God now that he
          was yesterday, the same in the year 1872 that he was in the year
          33, or fifteen or eighteen hundred years before the birth of
          Christ, and if we obey the same form of doctrine obeyed by those
          who lived anciently, and it is administered by those who hold
          authority from God, the gifts and powers will most assuredly
          follow, for God loves his children now as much as he loved them
          in any past age of the world.
          Says Jesus, when speaking to Nicodemus, in the words I have
          quoted, "Except a man be born again he can not see the kingdom of
          God." This puzzled Nicodemus, he could not understand it, and he
          asked the Savior another question, to which Jesus answered,
          "Verily, verily I say unto thee, except a man be born of water
          and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God." Now,
          my brethren and sisters, how can a man be born of water? We know
          a birth to be a passage from one element into another; hence if
          he be born of the water he must be completely immersed therein,
          and pass from that element into another. The same with the birth
          of the Spirit--he or she who is born of it must be completely
          enveloped in it. Jesus says a man can not see the kingdom of God
          unless he is born again, and he further says, a man cannot enter
          the kingdom of God unless he is born of the water and of the
          Spirit, not only of the Spirit, but also of the water.
          What does this birth of the water and of the Spirit consist of?
          of that which I have been endeavoring to describe to you--baptism
          for the remission of sins, being buried with Christ by baptism,
          whereby we are resurrected, as it were, from the dead, in the
          likeness of his burial and resurrection, entombed in the water,
          and being born of, or coming forth from the bosom of the water;
          and then receiving the Holy Ghost by the laying on of hands,
          which is the birth of the Spirit. And let me say unto you, as
          Brother Schonfeldt said this morning, that unless a man does obey
          this form of doctrine he can not enter into the kingdom of God.
          This is strong language, and men may say it is uncharitable. I
          can not help that. These words are the words of the Savior--the
          Son of God. They are the words of truth and righteousness, they
          can not fail. I have not the right to say that a man can enter
          into the kingdom of God by any other means than this; on the
          contrary, I must affirm and reaffirm, and I must bear testimony
          to the words of Jesus, when he says, "Except a man be born of the
          water and of the Spirit he can not enter into the kingdom of
          The inquiry then arises in the mind, What is to become of the
          millions who have died without ever hearing the name of Christ?
          Says one, "What is to become of my ancestors and ancestresses who
          have not been born of the water and of the Spirit?" I know how
          this inquiry enters the hearts of men and women, and when they
          become acquainted with this Gospel, how strongly it appeals to
          their affections. They think, then, of beloved relatives and
          friends who have died without a knowledge of the Gospel, and they
          would do a great deal for their salvation; in fact it would
          embitter all their lives to think that they could not be saved.
          Could we be happy, my brethren and sisters, in thinking that we
          had received a form of doctrine which would exalt us into the
          presence of God and the Lamb, there to bask for ever in happiness
          and bliss so great that the Apostle says, "Eye hath not seen, ear
          hath not heard, neither hath it entered into the heart of man to
          conceive?" Do you think we could be happy in the contemplation
          and assurance of such a future, if no means were provided whereby
          our parents and relatives, who had died in ignorance of the
          Gospel, could be made partakers of the same blessing and glory,
          but because they had not had the privilege of being born of the
          water and of the Spirit they must be consigned to endless
          perdition? I could not be happy under such circumstances. I would
          rather, it seems to me, have much less happiness and have them
          share it with me, than to be eternally separated, and them
          condemned to that never ending hell about which the sectarian
          world preach so much. But we are happy in the knowledge that this
          is no part of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. That teaches that all
          will be judged according to the law that has been taught unto
          them. As I have already said, I again repeat, "This is
          condemnation, that light has come into the world, and men loved
          darkness rather than light." "Where there is no law," the Apostle
          says, "there is no transgression." Men cannot be held accountable
          for that which they never knew. God will never consign his
          creatures to a never-ending misery for not obeying the Gospel of
          his Son, when they never had it taught unto them, and it is as
          great a fallacy, and as great a libel on our God, as ever was
          propagated about any being to make such an assertion. To say that
          these heathen, who roamed over these mountains and through these
          valleys, before we came here, who never heard the name of Jesus
          christ, and countless myriads of heathen in other lands who have
          died in ignorance of the Gospel, will be consigned to eternal
          damnation, to a never-ending hell, there to welter in and to
          suffer unspeakable and indescribable misery throughout the
          countless ages of eternity, because they did not obey the Gospel
          they never heard, is one of the greatest libels on the character
          of our God that ever was enunciated by man. I do not believe in
          such a God; he is not the God of the Bible; he is not the God I
          worship. I worship a God of mercy and of love, whose heart is
          full of compassion. The Bible teaches that God is love, and I can
          not conceive that a God would be possessed of the attributes of
          love and mercy who would take such a course with his own ignorant
          offspring. No, there is something different from this taught in
          the Gospel. We are taught there that God's salvation is not
          confined to this brief space which we call time, but that, as he
          is eternal, so are his mercy, love and compassion eternal towards
          his creatures. I have not time this afternoon to explain our
          views on this point. Suffice it to say that, in the Scriptures is
          found, plainly written, the plan of salvation which God has
          Who are they who are under condemnation, and who need fear at the
          prospect of the same? Men and women who, living in the day when
          the Gospel is preached in its fullness and purity, hear it and
          reject it. Against such the anger of God is enkindled, and they
          are in a far worse condition that those who die and never hear
          it. Says Jesus, "It would be better for a man to have a millstone
          tied to his neck, and for him to be thrown into the depths of the
          sea," than to do such an such things; and in another place he
          says, "It would be better for a man never to be born." Why?
          Because light having been presented to him, and truth proclaimed
          in his hearing, he rejects the same.
          The Latter-day Saints, I hold, will be held to stricter
          accountability than any other people on the face of the earth.
          Men wonder why we have suffered and been persecuted so much in
          the past. I think it was partly because of our hardness of heart.
          Not that the men who persecuted us were justified in so doing.
          They were tested and tried, the Lord left them their agency and
          they brought themselves under condemnation because of their
          conduct. But we never had anything descend upon us as a
          persecution or scourge that has not been intended for our good;
          and we are held to a stricter accountability than any other
          people because we have the Gospel taught unto us. The thousands
          who live throughout these valleys testify that they have received
          the Holy Ghost; they testify that they received it in the lands
          where they embraced the Gospel; they say that this love which
          they have for one another, and the disposition they have to dwell
          together in peace and unity are the fruits of this Holy Spirit
          that they have received. They testify that the Lord has revealed
          unto them that this is the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. I do
          not know but there are thousands here to-day who, if they had
          time and opportunity, would arise and testify that this is the
          truth, and that God has taught it unto them, and they know it by
          the power of the Holy Ghost. When a people reach this condition
          they are held to stricter accountability than they are who have
          not this knowledge. On this account we must walk circumspectly,
          with the fear of God before our eyes. We must be a pure people or
          we will be scourged; we must be a holy people, or God's anger
          will be kindled against us. We must not be guilty of dishonesty
          or take advantage one of another; we must not bear false witness;
          we must not neglect our duties one to another or towards God, for
          we can not do these things with impunity, for God's anger will be
          kindled against us; and in proportion to the light which men have
          will they be judged, and God will reward them according to the
          deeds done in the body. An enlightened American will be held to
          stricter accountability than an ignorant Indian; and the man who
          has heard the sound of the everlasting Gospel and the testimony
          of the servants of God is held to stricter accountability than he
          who has never heard them.
          I said that time would not permit me to dwell on points connected
          with the salvation of the ignorant dead; but there is a way
          provided in the Gospel of the Son of God by which even they can
          have its ordinances administered unto them. I will just refer to
          one passage, which you can read at your leisure. In the 15th
          chapter of the first of Corinthians, Paul, in reasoning upon the
          resurrection of the dead, says, among other things, "Else what
          shall they do who are baptized for the dead? If the dead rise not
          at all, why then are they baptized for the dead?" This is a
          little key given to a very important principle. Paul evidently
          understood a principle by which vicarious baptism could be
          performed, that is, one person could be baptized for another, the
          same as Jesus made a vicarious offering for us. He died on the
          cross for us--he was our Savior. Paul, substantiating the idea
          that there is a resurrection, referred to this ordinance, which
          seemed to exist in the Church and to be understood by the Saints
          in ancient days. There would have been no need to be baptized for
          the dead if the dead rise not at all. This is the gist of his
          argument; and there are other passages which go to prove that the
          Gospel of Jesus is all sufficient to reach and save those who
          have died without hearing and obeying it. Peter says, referring
          to Jesus, "He went to preach to the spirits in prison who were
          disobedient when once the long-suffering of God waited in the
          days of Noah." I will give you another passage to show that he
          did not go direct to his Father after his death on the cross. You
          Latter-day Saints understand, or ought to understand, that he did
          not go immediately to his Father after his death on the cross.
          You Latter-day Saints understand, or ought to understand, that he
          did not go immediately to his Father, as many suppose, because,
          after his resurrection, when Mary had been seeking for the body
          of her Lord, and supposed that somebody had stolen it, she saw a
          personage in the garden who she imagined was the gardener. She
          went to him and asked who had taken away the body of her Lord.
          This personage spoke to her, calling her by name. She immediately
          recognized the Lord Jesus, and in her eagerness, anxiety and love
          she rushed forward as if to grasp him. But he forbade her, told
          her not to do so, saying, "Touch me not, for I am not yet
          ascended to my Father, but go to my brethren and say unto them, I
          ascend unto my Father and your Father, and to my God and your
          God." This was on the sunday, after his body had lain in the tomb
          from the preceding Friday--the third day, and he said he had not
          yet ascended to his Father. This is explained by Peter, in the
          passage I have already quoted wherein the Apostle says, "By which
          also he went to preach to the spirits in prison, who were
          disobedient when once the long-suffering of God waited in the
          days of Noah." There is another passage in Peter, which goes to
          prove the same thing, but I will not touch upon it. I have said
          sufficient to relieve, or it ought to relieve, us Latter-day
          Saints from any fears for those who have died in ignorance of the
          Gospel. But we can say, truly, that salvation can only be
          obtained in the way God has prescribed--by obeying the Gospel of
          the Lord Jesus Christ; and this is the way that he marked and the
          way we must walk in to obtain it.
          That God may help us to be faithful and to cleave to the truth
          all our days, regardless of all consequences, and eventually save
          us in his kingdom, is my prayer in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 /
          Brigham Young, August 11, 1872
                           Brigham Young, August 11, 1872
                  Delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                         Sunday Afternoon, August 11, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          I have an anxiety to bear testimony to the truth, though it is
          well known to many of my friends and acquaintances that it is not
          prudent for me to exercise myself in this large hall, as I have
          in days past. But I feel very anxious to speak to by brethren and
          sisters and to their families, to my friends and neighbors, and
          the inhabitants of the earth, concerning the Christian religion.
          I feel thus many times when I am not able to do so, but I desire
          at this time to bear testimony to the Gospel--the plan of
          salvation, to the holy Priesthood, that the Lord has revealed in
          the latter days. I admit at once, without any argument at all,
          that the whole human family are possessed more or less of truth;
          they have a great many very excellent and pure ideas, beliefs,
          faiths and sentiments, the adoption of which in their lives would
          promote truth and overcome error, sin and iniquity in their
          midst, and cause joy and peace to fill the hearts of individuals,
          families, neighborhoods, cities and nations.
          Sometimes we take the liberty of defining the religions of the
          day, known under the general name of Christianity. We have heard
          something of this, this afternoon; and with regard to the
          philosophy of that religion, we admit the truth of it. All have
          truth, all have good desires--that is to say, as people and as
          communities. There may be individuals who do not possess these
          principles, but there are many in all communities of the earth
          professing Christianity who wish, in reality, to know the truth,
          and to embrace it in their creeds, and most of them desire most
          fervently that the professors of this Christianity should live
          according to pure and holy principles. This we admit, and a few
          of this number have received the Gospel.
          When I speak of the Gospel in this sense, I mean the fullness of
          the Gospel of the Son of God as it has been revealed in our day.
          I do not refer to the Gospel as a mere historical knowledge of
          the Savior and his Apostles, and their doings upon the earth, but
          of the power of God unto salvation. And when I contemplate the
          human family in their present condition, and especially
          Christendom, I think what a pity it is that we Christians cannot
          see far enough and understand enough to be willing that every
          truth should take effect on the minds of the people, for every
          truth that is taught, believed and practiced, is good for
          mankind. It is good for the living, good for the dying, good for
          the dead; and if we Christians would accept and embrace all truth
          in our lives, instead of contending so much about what are called
          "non-essentials," it would be much more to our advantage, and
          would vastly increase peace and union in our midst.
          When we take up the religion that has been revealed--the Gospel
          in its fullness, we find that it is simply a code of laws,
          ordinances, gifts and graces which are the power of God unto
          salvation. The laws and ordinances which the Lord has revealed in
          these latter days, are calculated to save all the sons and
          daughters of Adam and Eve who have not sinned against the Holy
          Ghost, for all will be saved in a kingdom of glory, though it may
          not be in the celestial kingdom, for there are many mansions.
          These ordinances reach after every one of the children of our
          Father in heaven, and not only them, but after all the earth, the
          fullness of the earth, all things that dwell upon it, to bring
          them back into the presence of God, or into some kingdom or place
          prepared for them, that they may be exalted to a higher state of
          intelligence than they now dwell in.
          This may seem strange to many, but these are the ordinances and
          laws that the Lord has instituted for the salvation of the
          children of men; and when we compare the doctrines that we have
          preached to the Christian world, with the doctrines of the
          Christian world, we find that ours incorporate every truth, no
          matter what it is. If it belong to the arts and sciences of the
          day, all the same, for every truth in existence is embraced in
          that system of laws and ordinances taught by the Later-day
          Saints--the Gospel that God has revealed for the salvation of the
          human family.
          We want a little proof, a little evidence, a little testimony.
          This is the testimony that we are in possession of this Gospel.
          Our witness is upon the stand, before God and the people,
          testifying that the Latter-day Saints have got something that no
          other people on earth have. What is it? The oneness which we
          possess, according to the prayer of the Savior.
          We sent an Elder from here to the East Indies; we send one or two
          to Africa, and to the Asiatic continent, and distribute them to
          the different nations, to Japan, to China, and so on. They preach
          the Gospel to the Pagans, say to the Chinese. We will suppose
          that these Elders learn the Chinese language so far as to be able
          to make themselves understood by the people, and they preach to
          them the same doctrines as are believed in by the Latter-day
          Saints, and they are received into the hearts of honest
          Chinese--God reveals and manifests to them that these doctrines
          and principles, this plan of salvation, is true, and these
          Chinese would not differ with us on any point of doctrine. They
          would say, "The proper mode of baptism is by immersion, the
          Scriptures are plain upon this point." Here let me take the
          liberty of saying, that if the whole Christian world were to
          adopt the method of baptism by immersion, you would never hear a
          person raise an argument about sprinkling or pouring. But leaving
          my witness, I say these latter ideas are the cisterns which men
          hew out to themselves, which will hold no water, for somebody or
          other is eternally scuttling their vessels, and they are sinking.
          If every Christian denomination would come to the house of
          worship on the Sabbath, and break bread and partake of the bread
          and wine in testimony of their faith in Jesus Christ, there would
          be no differences, contentions or arguments, and no person could
          sink their vessel; but now, comparatively speaking, they are
          sinking each other's vessels continually. But again to my
          testimony, to my witness.
          When the Chinese receives the Gospel he is one with us. He does
          not want six months' teaching or trial; he does not need to go to
          an academy or a seminary five or seven years to learn that this
          mode of baptism is correct; but taking the Bible he reads it,
          and, says he, "The Holy Ghost bears witness to me that baptism by
          immersion is the correct mode, and that it is right to break
          bread and drink wine in remembrance of, and to testify our faith
          in him whose body was broken and whose blood was shed for the
          salvation of the human family." There is no contention, and
          though only one Elder may have gone there, and he has baptized
          but one, or ten, a hundred, a thousand, or thousands, they are
          all of one heart and one mind; and if we were to charge this
          Elder not to tell these Chinese that they must gather to America,
          for that was the land of Zion--and America is the land of
          Zion--the first this Elder would know, somebody or other would be
          up in a meeting and telling that Zion was in america, and they
          had got to emigrate there. The Elder might inquire why, and he
          would be told, "It is revealed to me, and I do know by the
          manifestations of the Spirit within me, through your preaching,
          that we are to assemble on the continent of America, for that is
          the land of Zion." And if they come here, they will not ask how
          many methods of baptism we have, or how many of administering the
          Sacrament, or of dispensing the ordinances of the house of God,
          for the Spirit makes them of one heart and one mind with those on
          this continent, and from whatever nation they come, they all see
          alike in reference to the ordinances of the house of God.
          From China let us go directly to the Cape of Good Hope, and there
          an Elder is preaching and baptizing people into the kingdom of
          God, and when they get into this kingdom they begin to read and
          understand, and to prophesy, and if they are not checked in the
          gifts, you will hear them speak in tongues. Let me say here, to
          the Latter-day Saints, it is frequently asked by our brethren,
          "Why do not the people speak with tongues?" We do, and we speak
          with tongues that you can understand, and Paul says he would
          rather speak five or ten words in a language that can be
          understood, than many in a language that can not be. This is what
          he conveyed. We speak with tongues that can be understood; but
          the reason that we do not encourage this little, particular,
          peculiar gift, which is for the edifying of some few in the
          Church, I have not time to explain. But to my witness again, who
          is on the stand.
          You take men, women and families from the cape of Good Hope, from
          the northern seas, China, the East Indies, or the islands of the
          sea, and let them receive the Gospel and come here, and, just as
          long as they live so as to enjoy the Spirit of the holy Gospel
          they have obeyed, there are no questions asked with regard to
          doctrine. We will now go a step further.
          Here is a great bone of contention with regard to political
          affairs. The world say "Why do not these Latter-day Saints get up
          their mass meetings, and sustain this, that or the other one, and
          be like other people in a political point of view?" Why do we not
          sustain these advocates who are now in the field, and join, and
          be one with, some one or other of the political parties of the
          country? We have no desire to do so, that is the reason. If we
          had the privilege of voting in, independent of all other people
          on this land of America, or in the United States, the man who
          should serve as president, we should cast about to find the most
          suitable man, and he would be the nominee, and when his name came
          before the people, every man and woman who had the privilege of
          putting their vote in the ballot box would vote for that man,
          asking no questions. Our friends in the political world say, "We
          do not like this oneness." The ministers in the pulpit, the
          politicians in the bar room, on the steam boat, in the rail cars,
          in the halls of Congress or in the legislatures, say, "We do not
          like this oneness," and still the priest and the deacon are
          praying continually, according to the Scripture testimony, that
          the Saints may be one. Well, where will you have them one? Just
          name those particular points wherein and how this people who
          profess to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ shall be one. How far
          shall we go? If we had the privilege of voting for the
          presidential nominees to-day, General grant would solicit the
          vote of every "Mormon" man and woman, and the cry would be, "Vote
          for me. Be one and vote unitedly. Do not be divided in your
          votes, but vote for me." Mr. Greeley would preach the same
          doctrine--"Do not vote for Grant, vote for me." And when a
          governor, member of Congress, or any other officer was in the
          field they would all contend for this oneness, but each one would
          say, "I want you should be one with me." "Well, but your
          neighbor, your competitor, is perhaps quite as good a man as you
          are." "That is no difference, he is my enemy, my opponent, and I
          wish to beat him if I possibly can, I want this place." But when
          you come to the Latter-day Saints, if they can get the right man,
          the best man they can find, they unitedly cast their ballots into
          the ballot-box to make that man president, governor,
          representative, or any other officer; and if we learn that he is
          not as talented as some other man, perhaps not so capable of
          filling the office as his neighbor, better be united on and with
          him, and give him your faith and your prayers, and he will answer
          every purpose, and will fulfil his mission to your satisfaction,
          and far better than if you were to quarrel, contend and argue
          over the matter, for where they do this the inhabitants of the
          earth, if they did but know it, have an internal influence to
          contend against. Take for instance, the financial circles, the
          commerce of the world, those business men, where they have their
          opponents they have an internal influence to contend against,
          whether they know it or not; and that power, with all the secrecy
          of the grave, I might say, will seek to carry out their schemes
          unknown to their opponents, in order that they may win. Like the
          man at the table with the cards in his hands, unseen by any but
          himself, he will take the advantage as far as he can. So says the
          politician. So say the world of Christendom, so say the world of
          the heathens, and it is party upon party, sect after sect,
          division upon division, and we are all for ourselves, and each
          one is willing that we should be one in our faith, feelings and
          actions, if we will be one with him.
          Well, this witness that is on the stand can not be set aside or
          overcome; it is a witness that the world of mankind can not
          impeach, neither the testimony which it imparts. Take people from
          China, India, Africa, Europe, the North Pole or the South Pole,
          give them the Gospel and they are one. It was not Joseph Smith,
          neither is it Brigham Young that makes them one; it is neither
          the high council nor the First Presidency that makes them one,
          but it is the power of God unto salvation that makes the
          Later-day Saints one in heart, in spirit, in action, in their
          religious faith and ordinances, and in their dealings, where they
          are honest and live their religion. That makes them one, no
          matter who they are, where they are, or upon what subject, if it
          be a subject worthy the attention of the people. Our religion
          descends to the whole life of man, although some, sometimes, say,
          there is divine law, there is human law, and there are principles
          which pertain to our religion and there are principles which
          pertain to the philosophy of the world. But let me here say to
          you, that the philosophy of the religion of heaven incorporates
          every truth that there is in heaven, on earth, or in hell.
          Now, we wish to be one and to understand the Gospel. Receive the
          Gospel and the spirit of it and we will be one. All Christendom
          would say, 'Come go with us, come go with us and we will do you
          good." We can say the same--"Come go with us, and we will do you
          good." We will tell you how to be saved. How far does the
          Christian religion go? Let every man look at it, read, pray
          meditate, call upon the Lord, and judge for himself. I say that
          that which is commonly called the Christian religion is far from
          civilizing the world, and far from making the Christian world
          one, far from bringing the disciples to be of one heart and one
          mind. They say that there are a great many of these nonessentials
          that we differ about. Very true, they are non-essentials, and
          they are pretty much all of them non-essentials. Believing in the
          Lord Jesus Christ is very essential; believing in God, his
          Father, and our Father, is very essential; having faith in the
          name of Jesus is very essential. On these points they all agree,
          and we agree with them, and they with us; but it is very
          different when we come to the laws and ordinances of the kingdom
          of God.
          It has been read to you here what Jesus said to his disciples--"I
          will drink no more with you of this wine--the juice of the
          vine--until I drink with you anew in my Father's kingdom." Jesus
          undertook to establish the kingdom of God upon the earth. He
          introduced the laws and ordinances of the kingdom. What was the
          result? After killing the Son of God, they could not even let the
          Apostles live; they could not let Paul live, who was not a
          believer in the days of Jesus, but an opposer, and who, after the
          death of the Savior, hunted and sought all who believed on him,
          for the purpose of imprisoning and punishing them, and he was the
          very man who held the clothes of the young men who stoned Stephen
          to death.
          What did they do with the rest of them? Crucified them, stoned
          them, mangled them, and so on, with the exception, I suppose, of
          John. As long as any of the disciples of the Savior was on the
          earth they were hunted and persecuted, and the cry of their
          enemies was, "Do not leave their track until they are
          exterminated," just as it is now with regard to the Latter-day
          Saints--"Do not leave their track, go where they go, introduce
          every iniquity you can, and do as they did in ancient days." How
          did they do then? You can read the account given of our first
          parents. Along came a certain character and said to Eve--you know
          women are of tender heart, and he could operate on this tender
          heart--"The Lord knows that in the day thou eatest thereof thou
          shalt not surely die, but if thou wilt take of this fruit and eat
          thereof thine eyes will be opened and thou wilt see as the Gods
          see;" and he worked upon the tender heart of mother Eve until she
          partook of the fruit, and her eyes were opened. He told the
          truth. And they say now, "Do this that your eyes may be opened,
          that you may see; do this that you may know thus and so." In the
          days of Jesus and his Apostles the same power was operating, and,
          actuated by that, men hunted them until the last one was banished
          from human society, and until the Christian religion was so
          perverted that the people received it with open hands, arms,
          mouth and heart. It was adulterated until it was congenial to the
          wicked heart, and they received the Gospel as they supposed. But
          that was the time they commenced little by little to transgress
          the laws, change the ordinances, and break the everlasting
          covenant, and the Gospel of the kingdom that Jesus undertook to
          establish in his day and the priesthood were taken from the
          earth. But the Lord has again set his hand to gather Israel, to
          redeem his people and to establish his kingdom on the earth, and
          the enemy of all righteousness says, "We have got plenty of
          religion, we have got plenty of followers, we have plenty of
          money, we have plenty of influence, never leave the track of the
          Latter-day Saints until they are used up." Well, it is God and
          them for it, as far as that is concerned; that is not for me to
          say anything about. We are here, and the Gospel we have got makes
          us of one heart and mind in all the affairs of life; and the
          philosophy of our religion embraces all the true philosophy,
          every art and every science there is on the face of the whole
          earth, and when they step outside the pale of the Christian
          religion, the power of God and the priesthood of the Son of God,
          they step out of the kingdom of heaven, and they then have
          cisterns that will hold no water, systems that will not bear
          scrutinizing. I know that a great many of the scientific men of
          the world philosophize upon this, that and the other thing.
          Geologists will tell us the earth has stood so many millions of
          years. Why? Because the Valley of Western Colorado, here, could
          not have washed out without taking such a length of time. What do
          they know about it? Nothing in comparison. They also reason about
          the age of the world by the marvelous specimens of petrification
          that are sometimes discovered. Now we can show them plenty of
          places where there are trees, perfect stone, running into the
          solid rock, and perhaps the rock is forty, fifty, or a hundred
          feet above the tree. Yet it is a perfect tree. There is the bark,
          there is the heart, and there is the outer-coating between the
          heart and the bark, all perfect rock. How long did it take to
          make this tree into rock? We do not know. I can tell them, simply
          this--when the Lord Almighty brings forth the power of his
          chemistry he can combine the elements and make a tree into rock
          in one night or one day, if he chooses, or he can let it lie
          until it pulverises and blows to the four winds, without
          petrifying, just as he pleases. He brings together these elements
          as he sees proper, for he is the greatest chemist there is. He
          knows more about chemistry and about the formation of the earth
          and about dividing the earth, and more about the mountains,
          valleys, rocks, hills, plains, and the sands than all the
          scientific men that we have. This we can say of a truth. Well, if
          it takes a million years to make a perfect rock of one kind of a
          tree, say a cedar tree, how long would it take to make a perfect
          rock of a cottonwood tree? Let the chemists tell this, if they
          can, but they can not tell it.
          Our religion embraces chemistry; it embraces all the knowledge of
          the geologist, and then it goes a little further than their
          systems of argument, for the Lord almighty, its author, is the
          greatest chemist there is. Will any of the chemists tell us what
          the Lord did with the elements in Wisconsin, and in Chicago,
          Illinois, last Fall? They made a flaming fire of the heavens, the
          elements were melted with fervent heat. This was a chemical
          process, but can any of our chemists tell how it was brought
          about? I think not. But there were certain elements which lost
          their cohesive properties, and a change occurred, and the result
          was this terrible fire. So it will be when, as the Scriptures
          foretell, "the elements shall melt with fervent heat." The Lord
          Almighty will send forth his angeles, who are well instructed in
          chemistry, and they will separate the elements and make new
          combinations thereof, and the whole heavens will be a sheet of
          fire. Well, our religion embraces this; and we know of no laws,
          no ordinances, no gifts, no principles, no arts, no sciences that
          are true, but what are embraced in the religion of Jesus Christ,
          in this Priesthood, which is a perfect system of government.
          If anybody wants to know what the priesthood of the Son of God
          is, it is the law by which the worlds are, were, and will
          continue for ever and ever. It is that system which brings worlds
          into existence and peoples them, gives them their
          revolutions--their days, weeks, months, years, their seasons and
          times and by which they are rolled up as a scroll, as it were,
          and go into a higher state of existence; and they who believe in
          the Lord Jesus Christ--the maker, framer, governor, dictator and
          controller of this earth--they who live according to his law and
          priesthood will be prepared to dwell on this earth when it is
          brought into the presence of the Father and the Son. This is the
          habitation of the Saints; this is the earth that will be given to
          the Saints, when they and it are sanctified and glorified, and
          brought back into the presence of the Father and the Son. This is
          our religion, and I bear testimony to it; and this oneness which
          the Latter-day Saints possess, which is now so much contended
          against and hated by the christian world, in a political,
          financial, philosophical, and every other respect and capacity,
          is the power of God unto salvation, and is not produced by the
          influence or power of man, and this witness cannot be
          impeached--it is impossible to impeach it. This is our testimony,
          and this is one witness, one testimony that the Gospel which we
          preach is the Gospel that God has revealed for the salvation of
          the children of men, and it will bring all the sons and daughters
          of Adam and Eve into a state of glory and happiness that is far
          beyond their conception, or any ideas that thy have ever received
          while in this wicked world; and this glory the Lord has prepared
          in his mansion for his children. "Well," says one, if I am pretty
          sure to get a state of glory better than this, I guess I will not
          take the trouble to inherit anything more." Well, run the risk of
          it, every man on the earth has that privilege. The Gospel is
          preached, sin revives, some die and some contend against it--some
          receive it and some do not; but this is the sin of the
          people--truth is told them and they reject it. This is the sin of
          the world, "Light has come into the world, but men love darkness
          rather than light, because their deeds are evil." So said Jesus
          in his day. We say, Here is the Gospel of life and salvation, and
          every one that will receive it, glory, honor, immortality and
          eternal life are theirs; if they reject it, they take their
          chance. I hope and pray that we may all be wise and receive the
          good part, that we may have the benefit thereof.
          I say to the Latter-day Saints, Will you live your religion? You
          can see people apostatizing from the Church, but what is the
          result? Ask every apostate who ever received the spirit of this
          work, "Can you go and enjoy any other religion?" Not one of them.
          Have you never known persons leave the Church of Jesus Christ of
          Latter-day Saints, and join any other church? Certainly I have,
          and pretty good people. I recollect one old lady that we left in
          the States. She said she was too old to gather up with the
          Saints. Her friends were Baptists, she lived in the midst of them
          and joined their church. Sit down and talk with her--"Sister, how
          do you feel?" "Just as I have always felt." "Are you satisfied
          with this religion you have joined?" "I believe in the work I
          embraced years ago. 'Mormonism' is true, and I believe it just as
          I always have. But here are my home and my friends, and I
          fellowship them as far as they do right--as far as they believe
          on the Lord Jesus Christ. They want I should be a member of their
          church and I do not know that it hurts me to be so." "Are you
          satisfied to accept their religion and none else?" Says she, "I
          care no more about it than I did while in the midst of the
          Latter-day Saints; but here are my friends and home. By and by I
          shall sleep in the grave;" and there she is today, sleeping with
          those who have laid their bodies down to rest. This is one
          instance. But you take men and women with youth and vigor, who
          apostatize from the truth, and are they satisfied with anything
          else? No, and they are not satisfied with themselves. They are
          not beloved by God nor by Angels, nor by their families. Are they
          beloved by the enemy of all righteousness and his fellow
          associates? No. They say to the apostate, "You are a hypocrite, a
          traitor, a deceiver, and if you are not a false witness we ask
          who is, for you have testified hundreds and thousands of times,
          that, by the power of God and the revelations of Jesus Christ,
          you knew Joseph Smith was a Prophet, and that this latter-day
          work was true, and now you say it is not true." "When did you
          tell the truth?" says Mr. Devil, "then or now?" Says he, "I
          despise you;" and they hate themselves and everybody else. They
          have no fellowship for their neighbors, for the Latter-day Saints
          nor for any Christian denomination, and I do not know where in
          the world they can be placed. This is the condition of an
          apostate. But while this is the condition of those who apostatize
          from our Church how is it with those who leave any of the
          sectarian churches, after having been a Methodist, Presbyterian,
          Baptist, or Congregationalist? Why they go from church to church,
          and feel just the same as before? Is not this true? Yes, I know
          it is; not that I have passed from one to another myself, but I
          have been acquainted with those who have. Did I fellowship them?
          I fellowshipped them no more than I do now. I fellowship
          everything that is good and virtuous, everything that is truthful
          and good; but sin I do not fellowship in them, nor in a
          Latter-day Saint, or one who professes to be so. I fellowship all
          good, and we have it. It is all right, and if we have error, it
          is because we do not live according to the Gospel that we have
          embraced. If we have embraced error in our faith, it is because
          we do not understand our own doctrine; if we have error in our
          lives, it is because we deviate from the path of rectitude that
          God has marked out for us to walk in.
          May the Lord help us to do right. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 /
          Brigham Young, August 18, 1872
                           Brigham Young, August 18, 1872
                         REMARKS BY PRESIDENT BRIGHAM YOUNG,
                Delivered in the Bowery, Logan City, Sunday Morning,
                                  August 18, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          There is just about time for a ten minutes' sermon. I have
          several little sermons for the people, and I will begin by taking
          up the case of brother Samuel Roskelly, Bishop up here in
          Smithfield. I have been hearing for a year or two about brother
          Roskelly being wonderfully dishonest, oppressing the people,
          overbearing with his brethren, treating them with contempt and
          abusing them, taking their means and so on. Last Friday, about
          five o'clock, we assembled in this hall, that is, all who were
          disposed to come together, to have these matters brought before
          us. We sat and heard them as patiently as we could. We had not
          time to hear all speak and say all they wanted to. We found, as
          we generally find these complaints--they have their origin in
          selfishness, in greediness, in a complaining heart, destitute of
          the Spirit of the Lord, imagining to themselves that they know
          just what is right, and they want to get everybody in the world
          to feel as they feel. But we find that almost all complaints that
          arise are sown by the enemy; they grow in this soil, they take
          root, spring up and bear seed, and when the stalk is shaken then
          the seed makes its appearance. We examined these matters far
          enough. I think there were eight complaints against Bishop
          Roskelly, and when we had got through I did not stop to ask the
          brethren how they felt, for I did not see anything to talk about.
          I did not learn that there was anything of sufficient importance
          to spend time about, or to ask my counselor, or to ask any of the
          Twelve, any of the Bishops, or any of the brethren present, to
          give their opinion on the subject. I did not see that there was
          any opinion to be formed. I learned nothing, only that these
          little roots--this seed of bitterness--had grown up and borne
          Just about the same complaints came to me year after year against
          brother Maughan and brother Benson, and of other Bishops in this
          valley very few have been excused. If we were to hear them all
          and trace them to their origin, we would find they all are the
          fruits of jealousy, covetousness--which is idolatry, discontent
          and greediness. Those with whom they originate are very anxious
          to have everybody look through the glasses they look through, to
          feel as they feel, and to be dictated by them. I want to say this
          to the brethren and to the sisters, that they may know how we
          feel about this matter. We did not chasten Bishop Roskelly nor
          any of the brethren of his ward, but we talked to them a little,
          and gave them some good counsel; and we do not feel like
          chastening them, but just say to them, Try and live so that the
          Spirit of the Lord will live within you, and you will do well
          I gave brother Roskelly some counsel with regard to keeping
          accounts. I learned, years and years ago, the benefit of having
          my business transactions well written out in black and white, and
          when I have any dealings with a man, put that down. If I have
          paid him, say I have paid him, how much and what for, which makes
          a proper account and history. I learned this by experience, and I
          got this little item when I first started in business in my
          youth. We were building up a little town. A few merchants, a few
          mechanics, and a few others had come in, and we were together one
          evening talking about keeping account books, and bringing up the
          different authors. One gentleman in the company, named David
          Smith, said--"Gentlemen, I have studied every author in America
          on book-keeping, and some of the European issues, and I have
          learned that there is no rule or method so good as to write down
          facts just as they occur. That is the best book-keeping I have
          learned yet." This I have observed in my life; I adopted this
          principle as soon as I heard it. I say, then, to brother
          Roskelly, instead of keeping his own books, have somebody or
          other that will know his accounts and understand his dealings to
          keep a faithful record of the same; and I say this to all the
          Bishops and to men of business, not only to those in the tithing
          department, but merchants, mechanics and farmers. Most of our
          farmers that I have been acquainted with never keep any books at
          all; they depend on memory, and I have known some men to do quite
          a business in this way. We have a considerable number of
          tradesmen in our community, some of whom never keep any books or
          accounts. This class are liable at any time to be imposed upon. A
          person comes up, and, says he, "You owe me, and I want my pay."
          The man knows he has paid him, but he forgets when, where and
          how, but it is settled in his feelings that he does not owe him
          anything. This brings contention, discord and strife, even among
          pretty good Elders; but if we keep a strict account of
          everything, we can tell a man then whether we have paid him or
          not, or whether we owe him or not. This is the way for brother
          Samuel Roskelly and all the Bishops to do. I wanted to say this,
          and also that there is no particular fault to be found with
          brother Roskelly, and no particular fault to be found with the
          people, only they do not live their religion quite as they
          should, and the spirit of contention creeps in instead of the
          spirit of prayer. My counsel, brethren and sisters, is to pray,
          keep the law of God, observe the Sabbath day, partake of the
          Sacrament, observe your tithes and offerings, and fill up your
          lives with doing good. This accomplishes my ten minutes, and now
          I leave the ground. we will close our meeting until 2 o'clock,
          then I have a few other discourses to deliver.
          [When the congregation re-assembled, after singing and prayer,
          President Young again took the stand, and spoke as follows:--]
          Now for my second lecture. This is upon financial affairs
          entirely. It is merely a question I am going to propound to the
          people, and I desire an answer from them. Suppose that the
          Wholesale Co-operative Store in Salt Lake City should be pleased
          to extend its operations to this valley and establish a wholesale
          store here, I want to know what the disposition and action of the
          people would be with regard to sustaining it? I see there is a
          necessity for it, for there are a good many settlement in this
          valley and Bear Lake Valley that now go to Salt Lake City to do
          their trading. We have proposed placing a wholesale store here,
          and whatever is kept in Salt Lake City in the wholesale
          department, duplicate the same for this place, and keep a perfect
          assortment here the same as is done in the city--farming
          implements wagons, carriages and everything necessary to supply
          the wants of the people. This will be a short lecture. Suppose
          that we undertake this, what will be the action of the people? I
          expect every settlement is represented here to-day, probably by
          the Bishops and leading men, who know the feelings of the people
          and who, more or less, control the business portions of their
          settlements. Perhaps a good many have not thought of it, then
          again a good many have, and they have matured this pretty well in
          their feelings and understandings. If we do this, our plan will
          be to supply the people with everything they want, and all their
          products that can be disposed of to buy them. We will take the
          products of the country that we can sell, ship them off and
          dispose of them, and in return supply you with goods. Will the
          Bishops, High Priests, Seventies, Elders, Priests, Teachers,
          Deacons, and their fathers, mothers, sons, daughters and the
          brothers sustain this institution if we place one here? We shall
          give you the goods just about as cheap as we can sell them in
          Salt Lake City, very little difference, so little you would not
          know; for the additional expense in bringing them from Ogden to
          this place, over conveying them from there to Salt Lake City,
          would be very trifling. If this would be the feelings of the
          different settlements, I would like to have you manifest it by
          showing your right hands. (Hands up.) Now let us have the
          opposition vote. (No opposition.)
          While I am on this subject let me say a few words with regard to
          dress, though I have not as much reason to do so here as I have
          in Salt Lake City and Ogden. You know that we are creatures
          subject to all the vanities of the world, and very subject to
          admiring its fashions. We have left Babylon, and instead of
          introducing it here we want it to stay yonder, and just as much
          as we can, no, that is the wrong word--just as much as we will,
          we want to make our own head dresses here, especially for the
          ladies, and for the gentlemen through the summer season. We would
          like to see all through our country what we see here in a
          measure--a decent dress on a lady. Instead of having four, five
          or six yards of cloth drawing through the street to raise dust on
          the people, that she can go along decently and you would not
          think there was a six horse team traveling there, with a dozen
          dogs under the wagon. This is what we would like, but when we
          come to the ornaments, I feel like blackguarding. I am going to
          speak about a little ornament they get up, I believe it is called
          a "bender," and I do not know but there is a Grecian or a Greek
          to it--a "Grecian bend." You have seen this ridiculed enough
          without my doing it. I want to say to you, ladies, just take off
          this ornament. If my sisters will take the hint, they will leave
          off these little articles. Some of them, after they have got half
          a dozen yards on it are not satisfied until they go and get a
          dozen yards of ribbon several inches wide to make bows to put on
          the top of that. It is ridiculous! I do not see much of it in
          this place, to what I do in some others. I would really like to
          see the ladies dress decent and comely. This will do on this
          subject, for a hint to the wise is sufficient, and enough has
          been said if the sisters will take counsel.
          I will now say a little with regard to our young people--a
          subject introduced here yesterday, very modestly and very nicely.
          Suppose the Latter-day Saints and the world at large were to
          carry out the principles that are received in the faith of a
          society called the Shaking quakers, how long do you suppose it
          would be before there would not be a human being left on the
          earth, unless there was some necromancy or stealthful conduct
          going on? About one hundred and twenty years would take the last
          man and woman from the earth. But this is not what is required of
          us, it was not required of Adam and Eve. They were required to
          multiply and replenish the earth, and I will here say a word to
          the ladies--Do not marvel, do not wonder at it, do not complain
          at Providence, do not find fault with mother Eve because your
          desire is to your husbands. Bear this with patience and
          fortitude! Be reconciled to it, meet your afflictions and these
          little,--well, we might say, not very trifling, but still they
          are wants, for if we desire only that that is necessary, and can
          govern and control ourselves to be satisfied with that, it is a
          great deal better than to want a thousand things that are
          unnecessary, and especially to the female portion of the
          inhabitants of the earth. But there is a curse upon them, and I
          can not take it off, can you? No, you can not--it never will be
          taken from the human family until the mission is fulfilled, and
          our Master and our Lord is perfectly satisfied with our work. It
          will then be taken from this portion of the community, and will
          afflict them no more; but for the present it will afflict them.
          And almost every lady I ever saw in my life is just as bad as a
          certain lady lecturer who, after lecturing and extolling her sex,
          and trying to impress upon them the idea that it would have been
          much better for the world if there had never been a man upon the
          earth, said, "Yet you know our weakness is such that we turn
          round and grab the first man we come to." How natural it is!
          Well, ladies, just be reconciled to your condition, and if there
          is a principle here or elsewhere that wishes to override the
          principle of celestial marriage, take heed to yourselves, for I
          can promise you one thing--If you ever had any faith in the
          Gospel and in celestial marriage, and you renounce or disbelieve
          and deny this doctrine, you will be damned. I promise you that,
          no matter who it is. Now take heed to yourselves! Look at the
          world. We might show up this mater here, but we do not wish to do
          so. Those who travel through the world can understand these
          things, and see the millions of the human family who are trodden
          under foot. I will refer you to the great cities of the world.
          Get their statistics and see how many young females perish in
          them yearly. Why? Because some good men have taken them and made
          second wives of them? No. It is because wicked men have seduced
          and ruined them, and have made them so reckless in their feelings
          that rather than see father, mother, brother, sister or friends
          again, they would die in a ditch. Those who are acquainted with
          the world know these things are true, and they are trying to
          introduce this practice into Salt Lake City. I will say no more
          on this subject, but let this little lecture or sermon suffice.
          I will now ask a question of the Latter-day Saints, and I can ask
          it of the aged, middle-aged and the youth, for it is a matter
          that comes within the range of the understanding of the entire
          community, even the children--How long will it take us to
          establish Zion, the way we are going on now? You can answer this
          question as the girl did the schoolmaster, I suppose, and say,
          "If forty years has brought a large percentage of Babylon into
          the midst of this people, how long will it take to get Babylon
          out and actually to establish Zion? The schoolmaster boasted of
          his aptness at figures and told the girl that no question in
          mathematics could be asked him that he could not readily answer.
          Said the girl, "I think I can ask you a question you cannot
          answer?" "Well," said he, "let's have it." "Well," said she, "if
          by eating one apple Mother Eve ruined the whole human family,
          what would an orchard full of apples do?" You will be as puzzled
          to answer my question as the schoolmaster was his pupil's
          question. You can say, "I do not know," and it is true, you do
          not know; but I can inform you on that subject--Until the father,
          the mother, the son and the daughter take the counsel that is
          given them by those who lead and direct them in building up the
          kingdom of God, they will never establish Zion, no never, worlds
          without end. When they learn to do this, I do not think there
          will be much complaining or grumbling, or much of what we have
          heard about to-day--improper language to man or beast. I do not
          think there will be much pilfering, purloining, bad dealing,
          covetousness or anything of the kind; not much of this unruly
          spirit that wants everybody to sustain its possessor and let him
          get rich, whether anybody else does or not. I think when we have
          learned that lesson, we will be willing to take the counsel of
          those who are set to direct us, the officers who are over us; and
          if they are not just, true, holy, upright and men of God in every
          respect, just have faith enough so that the Lord Almighty will
          remove them out of the way and do not undertake to remove them
          yourselves. This is the way we should live. There should be faith
          enough in the midst of this people that if your humble servants
          were to attempt to guide them in the ways of error, false
          doctrine, wickedness or corruption of any kind, he would be
          stopped in his career in twenty-four hours so that he would not
          be able to speak to them, and if he were not laid in the grave,
          he would have no power nor influence whatever. There ought to
          faith enough in a Ward, if the Bishop is wicked, if he is doing
          wrong and serving himself and the enemy instead of the Lord and
          his kingdom, to stop him in his career, so that the Lord would
          remove him out of the way. This has been the case in some few
          instances, and it ought to be every time and in every place.
          When shall we establish the principles of Zion? You can say, "I
          do not know." If we had power to do it, we should do it; but we
          are just in the position and condition, and upon precisely the
          same ground that God our Father is--He cannot force his children
          to do this, that or the other against their will--the eternal
          laws by which he and all others exist in the eternities of the
          Gods, decree that the consent of the creature must be obtained
          before the Creator can rule perfectly. It is just as impossible
          for the principles of heaven to rule in the hearts of the wicked
          and ungodly as anything you can well imagine; you might as well
          throw powder into a flaming fire and say it should not burn, or
          burst a cask of water in the air and say it should not fall to
          the ground. The consent of the creature must be had in these
          things, and until you and I do consent in our feelings and
          understand that it is a necessity that we establish Zion, we
          shall have Babylon mixed with us.
          I know the faith of the people, in a great measure, is, "We would
          like to see Zion," "Would you?" "Yes, but I would like to see it
          enjoyed by others. I do not want to be there myself, I want to
          see how it looks." This is the feeling, these are the ideas that
          pass through the minds of many. "We would just like to see the
          people live according to the principles of heaven, to see how
          they would look and act, to learn their ways; but we would not be
          bound to live there until we had seen enough to be able to judge
          whether we would like it or not. Maybe we would like it, maybe
          not; it might deprive us of some little privileges we have now.
          We might not be permitted to wear what we wear now, or to act,
          think and feel as we do now. We might be crippled or curtailed in
          our views or operations, consequently we do not want to enter
          into this order ourselves, but we would like some others to do so
          that we may see how it looks." This is the way they feel about
          Well, brethren, I have talked all I ought to, and perhaps more. I
          say as I always do, God bless you! Peace be with you, and love be
          multiplied upon the people. I pray for the good all over the
          earth. My desire is to see the kingdom of God prosper. We are
          prospering in many things, but we are not prospering in the grace
          of God and in the spirit of our holy religion as much as we
          should. Herein we come short. But if we will try and improve our
          minds, school and train ourselves to overcome every evil within
          us, every passion, every unruly thought, I do know by experience,
          by a close application of any individual to himself in schooling
          and training his mind, he can cease to think evil thoughts and he
          will be able to think good, that is, his mind be filled with
          pleasant reflections. This I know by experience. I heard Brother
          Taylor preach a sermon once on the principle of revelation, which
          contained the most pleasant ideas. Still it is in the Bible--all
          this is taught there--but he illustrated the principle of living
          for God perfectly day by day, showing that we could do so until
          god lived within us, and until we, ourselves, became a fountain
          of revelation; instead of having to ask, plead and pray the Lord
          to give us a vision and to open our minds, we could live for God
          until a fountain of light and intelligence was within us, from
          morning until evening, and from evening until morning, week after
          week, month after month and year after year. This is the fact.
          Then let us live so that the spirit of our religion will live
          within us, then we have peace, joy, happiness and contentment,
          which makes such pleasant fathers, pleasant mothers, pleasant
          children, pleasant households, neighbors, communities and cities.
          That is worth living for, and I do think that the Latter-day
          Saints ought to strive for this.
          May God help us!
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 /
          Brigham Young, August 24, 1872
                           Brigham Young, August 24, 1872
                         REMARKS BY PRESIDENT BRIGHAM YOUNG,
            Delivered at Farmington, Saturday Afternoon, August 24, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          There are a few minutes to spare before we dismiss, and there are
          quite a number of items that could be talked about that would be
          very interesting to the people, especially in regard to the first
          experience of the Church. When I hear brethren relate their
          experience of those days it brings to my mind many things
          pertaining to the establishment of the kingdom in the beginning.
          Not that I was a member of the Church at it organization, but I
          was near by and knew something of the doings of the Saints. I
          recollect very well the night that Joseph found the plates: the
          recollection of that event is as vividly impressed on my mind as
          though it were last night. But, to change my remarks to another
          subject referred to, let me ask you, brethren and sisters, How
          many do you suppose there are in the Church now who were in
          twenty-eight years ago? Some are disposed to imagine that the
          people we now call Latter-day Saints have been brought into the
          Church through the labors of the Prophet Joseph Smith. If we were
          to ask this congregation how many of them were in the Church
          twenty-eight years ago, we should find only a small portion of
          them. I will say that, probably, two-thirds, yes, three-fourths,
          and even more than that, have come into the Church through the
          administration of what is called the First Presidency at the
          present time; consequently our work shows for itself. We need not
          ask persons to give their opinion about the theory that we have
          placed before them, but what do you think of the work itself?
          What do you think of this great kingdom, this little empire, we
          might say, as it now appears to the world? It is twenty-eight
          years since Brother Joseph was killed, and the work has gone
          forth steadily and rapidly, and through the providences of God we
          have apparently advanced faster since then, than in the fourteen
          years before, so far as bringing the people into note, and giving
          them a name and fame in the eyes of the world. The work is still
          onward and it is upward.
          I simply ask the question about what the people think of these
          things, I do not wish to dwell on the principle of parties
          denying the faith, or remaining in the faith, they can do just as
          they please about that; but while Brother Levi Hancock was
          talking about sticking to the Church, and declaring that he meant
          to hang on to it, I thought, and say now, what in the name of
          common sense is there to hang on to, if he does not hang on to
          the Church? I do not know of anything. You might as well take a
          lone straw in the midst of the ocean to save yourselves as to
          think of doing so by the knowledge, power, authority, faith and
          priesthood of the Christian world, and the heathen world into the
          bargain. There is nothing but the Gospel to hang on to! Those who
          leave the Church are like a feather blown to and fro in the air.
          They know not whither they are going; they do not understand
          anything about their own existence; their faith, judgment and the
          operations of their minds are as unstable as the movements of the
          feather floating in the air. We have not anything to cling to
          only faith in the Gospel.
          As for the doctrine that is promulgated by the sons of Joseph, it
          is nothing more than any other false religion. We would be very
          glad to have the privilege of saying that the children of Joseph
          Smith, Junior, the Prophet of God, were firm in the faith of the
          Gospel, and following in the footsteps of their father. But what
          are they doing? Trying to blot out every vestige of the work
          their father performed on the earth. Their mission is to endeavor
          to obliterate every particle of his doctrine, his faith and
          doings. These boys are not following Joseph Smith, but Emma
          Bideman. Every person who hearkens to what they say, hearkens to
          the will and wishes of Emma Bideman. The boys, themselves, have
          no will, no mind, no judgment independent of their mother. I do
          not want to talk about them. I am sorry for them, and I have my
          own faith in regard to them. I think the Lord will find them by
          and by--not Joseph, I have told the people times enough, they
          never may depend on Joseph Smith who is now living; but david,
          who was born after the death of his father, I still look for the
          day to come when the Lord will touch his eyes. But I do not look
          for it while his mother lives. The Lord would do it now if David
          were willing; but he is not, he places his mother first and
          foremost, and would take her counsel sooner than be would the
          counsel of the Almighty, consequently he can do nothing, he knows
          nothing, he has no faith, and we have to let the matter rest in
          the hands of God for the present.
          Now a few words to the brethren and sisters upon the doctrine and
          ordinances of the house of God. All who have lived on the earth
          according to the best light they had, and would have received the
          fullness of the Gospel had it been preached to them, are worthy
          of a glorious resurrection, and will attain to this by being
          administered for in the flesh by those who have the authority.
          All others will have a resurrection, and receive a glory, except
          those who have sinned against the Holy Ghost. It is supposed by
          this people that we have all the ordinances in our possession for
          life and salvation, and exaltation, and that we are administering
          in these ordinances. This is not the case. We are in possession
          of all the ordinances that can be administered in the flesh; but
          there are other ordinances and administrations that must be
          administered beyond this world. I know you would ask what they
          are. I will mention one. We have not, neither can we receive
          here, the ordinance and the keys of the resurrection. They will
          be given to those who have passed off this state of action and
          have received their bodies again, as many have already done and
          many more will. They will be ordained, by those who hold the keys
          of the resurrection, to go forth and resurrect the Saints, just
          as we receive the ordinance of baptism, then the keys of
          authority to baptize others for the remission of their sins. This
          is one of the ordinances we can not receive here, and there are
          many more. We hold the authority to dispose of, alter and change
          the elements; but we have not received authority to organize
          native element to even make a spear of grass grow. We have no
          such ordinance here. We organize according to men in the flesh.
          By combining the elements and planting the seed, we cause
          vegetables, trees, grains, &c., to come forth. We are organizing
          a kingdom here according to the pattern that the Lord has given
          for people in the flesh, but not for those who have received the
          resurrection, although it is a similitude. Another item: We have
          not the power in the flesh to create and bring forth or produce a
          spirit; but we have the power to produce a temporal body. The
          germ of this, God has placed within us. And when our spirits
          receive our bodies, and through our faithfulness we are worthy to
          be crowned, we will then receive authority to produce both spirit
          and body. But these keys we cannot receive in the flesh. Herein,
          brethren, you can perceive that we have not finished, and cannot
          finish our work, while we live here, no more than Jesus did while
          he was in the flesh.
          We can not receive, while in the flesh, the keys to form and
          fashion kingdoms and to organize matter, for they are beyond our
          capacity and calling, beyond this world. In the resurrection, men
          who have been faithful and diligent in all things in the flesh,
          have kept their first and second estate, and worthy to be crowned
          Gods, even the sons of God, will be ordained to organize matter.
          How much matter do you suppose there is between here and some of
          the fixed stars which we can see? Enough to frame many, very many
          millions of such earths as this, yet it is now so diffused, clear
          and pure, that we look through it and behold the stars. Yet the
          matter is there. Can you form any conception of this? Can you
          form any idea of the minuteness of matter? Let me give you a
          comparison, for instance, with regard to mathematics. You take a
          child that is born to-day, say at twelve o'clock, precisely at
          high noon. One year from to-day there is another child born. The
          one born to-day will be just one year older than the other. The
          second one is perhaps not a minute old, it has just commenced to
          breathe the vital air. Now the one born first is a great many
          times older than the second, we would have to get some of these
          mathematicians to tell how many times. It would be over 31
          millions of seconds, a great many minutes, many hours, three
          hundred and sixty-five days, and one year. When these two
          children have lived just one year longer the elder of the two is
          two years old, the other one, the former, being just as old again
          as the latter. In one year more the first one will be only
          one-third older, the fourth year he will be one-fourth older, and
          so on. Now then, how long must these two children live to be
          exactly of an age? They never will be; never, no never, through
          all the eternities there are, and that is for ever and ever. They
          will always differ in age, and when countless millions and
          myriads of ages have passed away there is still, do you not see,
          a difference, these children are not yet of the same age. It is
          just so with matter. Take, for instance, a grain of sand. You can
          not divide it so small that it can not be divided again--it is
          capable of infinite division. We know nothing about how many
          times it can be divided, and it is just so with regard to the
          lives in us, in animals, in vegetation, in shrubbery. They are
          countless. To illustrate, you take a perfectly ripe kernel of
          corn--you will have some here perhaps in a few days--and if you
          get a glass, it does not require a very powerful one, and you
          take the chit of this corn and open it, you behold distinctly a
          stalk of corn, in that chit, a perfectly grown stalk of corn,
          with ears and leaves on it, matured, out in blossom,--there is
          the tassel, there are the ears and there is the corn! Well, you
          get a stronger glass and divide again, and you can see that this
          very chit is the grandfather of corn! We take the scientific
          world for this. Well, how many lives are there in this grain of
          corn? They are innumerable, and this same infinity is manifest
          through all the creations of God.
          We will operate here, in all the ordinances of the house of God
          which pertain to this side the vail, and those who pass beyond
          and secure to themselves a resurrection pertaining to the lives
          will go on and receive more and more, more and more, and will
          receive one after another until they are crowned Gods, even the
          sons of God. This idea is very consoling. We are now baptizing
          for the dead, and we are sealing for the dead, and if we had a
          temple prepared we should be giving endowments for the dead--for
          our fathers, mothers, grandfathers, grandmothers, uncles, aunts,
          relatives, friends and old associates, the history of whom we are
          now getting from our friends in the east. The Lord is stirring up
          the hearts of many there, and there is a perfect mania with some
          to trace their genealogies and to get up printed records of their
          ancestors. They do not know what they are doing it for, but the
          Lord is prompting them; and it will continue and run on from
          father to father, father to father, until they get the genealogy
          of their forefathers as far as they possibly can.
          I am going to stop my talking by saying that, in the millennium,
          when the kingdom of God is established on the earth in power,
          glory and perfection, and the reign of wickedness that has so
          long prevailed is subdued, the Saints of God will have the
          privilege of building their temples, and of entering into them,
          becoming, as it were, pillars in the temples of God, and they
          will officiate for their dead. Then we will see our friends come
          up, and perhaps come that we have been acquainted with here. If
          we ask who will stand at the head of the resurrection in this
          last dispensation, the answer is--Joseph Smith, Junior, the
          Prophet of God. He is the man who will be resurrected and receive
          the keys of the resurrection, and he will seal this authority
          upon others, and they will hunt up their friends and resurrect
          them when they shall have been officiated for, and bring them up.
          And we will have revelations to know our forefathers clear back
          to Father Adam and Mother Eve, and we will enter into the temples
          of God and officiate for them. Then man will be sealed to man
          until the chain is made perfect back to Adam, so that there will
          be a perfect chain of priesthood from Adam to the winding-up
          This will be the work of the Latter-day Saints in the millennium.
          How much time do you suppose we have to attend to and foster
          Babylon? I leave this question for you to answer at your
          pleasure. I have no time at all for that, I say, and stop my
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 /
          Brigham Young, August 25, 1872
                           Brigham Young, August 25, 1872
                           REMARKS BY BRIGHAM YOUNG, JUN.,
             Delivered at Farmington, Sunday Morning, August 25th, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                            GOD'S WAYS NOT AS MAN'S WAYS.
          I have a testimony, brethren and sisters, as to the truth of the
          work of God, that it is a pleasure to me to bear to you, and to
          strangers when opportunity offers. I have no particular text to
          speak upon at the present time save the one that should be at all
          times in the mind of every Latter-day Saint, and that is, the
          kingdom of God, and its growth and development upon the earth.
          This is a subject that should be ever present with us; and when
          an individual whose interests are professedly identified with
          that kingdom, forgets the duties devolving upon him in connection
          with it, we may infer that he has ceased to be useful therein. 
          We know, brethren, that it is impossible to please the Lord by
          following the counsels of our own minds, unless they are
          enlightened by the Spirit of the Almighty. The wisdom of man is
          not the wisdom of God, and to be successful in extending and
          strengthening the cause of God on the earth, we must have his
          Spirit to guide us. If our ways were as God's ways, we would do
          as he would have us do; but it is evident to all who are
          acquainted with the actions of the human family, not excluding
          the Latter-day Saints, that the mind of man is not as God's mind.
          A verse of Scripture, which now occurs to my mind, will
          illustrate this. It will be found in the 11th verse of the 2nd
          chapter of the 1st epistle to the Corinthians:--"For what man
          knoweth the things of man, save the spirit of man which is in
          him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but, the Spirit of
          The experience that the Latter-day Saints have had has taught
          them that this is true, and we know that when a man deems himself
          capable of acting solely on his own intelligence, and neglects to
          seek for the wisdom of Heaven to guide him, he is very apt to go
          astray. This feeling of independence of the Almighty has caused
          the apostacy of some, whom we, perhaps, have thought it would be
          almost impossible to blind to the truths they once advocated so
          well; but it is the case. Men do not look at things as God looks
          at them, therefore it is indispensably necessary for each
          individual Latter-day Saint to have the Spirit of God within him,
          that he may do His will and not carry out his own views.
          Look over the nations of the earth, and where is there a
          government established on correct principles, that is, in
          accordance with the commandments of God? There is not one, for
          they are all established by the wisdom of men, and men's ways are
          so different from the ways of God that it is impossible, with all
          their intelligence and knowledge--and we know they possess a
          great deal--for men to establish a government after the order of
          God. In some minor particulars such a government might not be far
          out of the way, but in all the essentials it would be dissimilar.
          It is the same with us, the Latter-day Saints, without the
          inspiration and wisdom of Heaven to guide us, we can not hope to
          carry out and accomplish God's purposes. Many of us have not had
          the educational advantages enjoyed by the wealthy in the outside
          world, having belonged to the laboring classes--to what is termed
          the down-trodden portions of the population of Europe and
          America, and I say thank God for it, for as a general thing the
          educated classes are fast becoming unbelievers in the Old and New
          Testament. We, having been taken from the lowly walks of life,
          have not, according to the ideas of the world, the intelligence
          necessary to establish a form of government equal to that which
          other men have established who have been more learned, better
          educated than we are, and who have had more wisdom than we seem
          to have, in a temporal point of view. But God, in his infinite
          mercy, has inspired our leaders, he has endowed them with wisdom
          and understanding to take the course and perform the work that he
          desired. I have heard men of the world point out to President
          Young and other leading men in this Church the course they should
          pursue under certain circumstances, to ensure the approval and
          friendship of, and to give satisfaction to, the leading men of
          our nation and the nations abroad; and to my certain knowledge
          their counsel was diametrically opposed to the course taken under
          those circumstances. I have noticed these things, and I know it
          is true that God's ways are not as men's ways; and for a man to
          undertake to be a Latter-day Saint while groping in the dark by
          trusting wholly to the intelligence of his own mind, is the
          hardest work imaginable; it is the most laborious task that can
          be, for any individual on the earth to try to be what he ought to
          be before his God without the Holy Spirit to assist and guide
          him. We know that naturally our hearts are far removed from God;
          and, speaking to the ancient Saints, one of the Apostles told
          them they were blinded in part, and saw through a glass darkly.
          This is our condition, then how necessary it is for us to seek
          continually for that Spirit which will enable us to live as
          Saints of the Most High should live, and to labor so that we may
          establish a kingdom on the earth which God will delight in, and
          which, when the great men of the earth see, they will be willing
          to acknowledge the wisdom manifested therein, and to glorify God
          for the same. To-day, if a stranger were to come into this
          congregation, for instance, he would be very likely to think,
          "These are the Latter-day Saints--the people who have gathered
          out from the nations of the earth to worship God! Well, I do not
          see a great amount of intellect manifested, there is no great
          intellectual ability, not so much as among the people of other
          congregations where I have been." That may be true, and hence the
          proof is more striking that the work we have done has been
          directed and dictated by the wisdom of the Almighty, and in its
          accomplishment the very spirit, energy and determination which
          our leaders have exhibited were required. You might have
          ransacked the world from one end to the other, and you could not
          have found educated men--men brought up in colleges--who would
          have come out and taken the axe and the plow, driven the teams,
          made the roads, led the people and located them as our leaders
          have done. They might have done these things if they had been
          willing to bow in obedience to God; but they are too highly
          educated, they are too full of the wisdom of the world to seek
          unto God, in lowliness of heart, for his Spirit to guide them, as
          our leaders have done. Such men as those I am referring to, could
          not have trusted implicitly in the arm of Jehovah, when on the
          plains, to protect them from the savages, the storms, and all the
          dangers incident to such a journey; they could not understand and
          comprehend the necessity of faith in god under such
          circumstances, their education and worldly wisdom would have
          rendered it next to impossible, and it required the very men who
          have been our leaders to do the work that has been done, and it
          needs them still. They are perfectly willing that God should
          guide this great ship Zion, they are willing to act under his
          direction; and no matter who the man is, nor where he comes from,
          if he identifies himself with this people, he must be willing
          that God should lead and guide him, and to obey every word that
          proceeds from His mouth, or he is not the man to help to carry on
          this work.
          To say that we are a perfect people, I can not do it, neither can
          I say that I am a perfect man. I am just as full of weaknesses as
          any other man, and so are my brethren with whom I associate; but
          the Elder of Israel, no matter how great his weaknesses, who
          humbly trusts in God and continually strives to overcome evil and
          to do only that which is right, will be enabled to triumph and be
          faithful to the end. What matters it if a man likes whisky, if he
          does not drink it? I do not care how much a man in this Church
          likes it, if he does not drink it, it makes no difference. I do
          not care how much he loves tobacco, or this, that or the other,
          that is not good, if he brings his actions and feelings into
          subjection to the dictates of the Spirit of God. I do not care
          how much a man loves property, it will not harm him if he does
          not set his heart upon it so that he could not sacrifice it, if
          required to do so, to promote the interests of God's kingdom upon
          the earth. I remember once, when a boy, Jedediah M. Grant saw me
          chewing tobacco, and said he, "You chew tobacco, do you?" "Yes
          sir." "Well, I never had any taste for it; it is no virtue in me
          that I do not use it, I tried hard enough, but it made me sick."
          The virtue, brethren, is in putting away or overcoming habits
          which you know would impede your progress in the kingdom of God.
          It was not a virtue in Bro. Grant that he did not chew tobacco,
          he tried to learn how, but could not do it. I tried, and
          succeeded. But, brethren and sisters, the idea is, to bring our
          actions, thoughts and feelings into complete subjection to the
          dictates of the Holy Spirit, and to be on hand at all times to
          labor as we are directed for the building up of the kingdom of
          God upon the earth; that should be the object with us. It is no
          use for a man to say, "I am a Latter-day Saint, and they have not
          cut me off yet. I have almost feared it sometimes, because I did
          not do that which I knew to be right; but I am still within the
          pale of the kingdom and I hope to slip along with the balance."
          This is just as great folly as for a man to claim the right to go
          a journey by railway when he has no ticket and no means to pay
          his fare. He may hang around, and declare that he is one of the
          crowd, and that he is going along with them on that train; but,
          ignorant of the time it starts, and destitute of the means to pay
          his way he strays off for a short time, and in the meanwhile the
          train starts and leaves him behind. It is just so with an
          unfaithful Elder in this kingdom--he is not prepared for events
          as they transpire, and, lacking the spirit of the Gospel, is
          liable to be left behind.
          I am talking to people who understand me, to people who have the
          word of God. The Elders testify that God has spoken from the
          heavens, and, that he revealed principles to the Prophet Joseph
          Smith and others, for the salvation of the human family; they
          declare that the principles revealed to them will save the people
          if they will practice them in their lives. I am talking to people
          who have received a testimony of these things for themselves, who
          have stood before, and lifted up their voices to, the nations of
          the earth, and declared that they knew Jesus was the Christ, that
          he had established his kingdom on the earth, that he had revealed
          principles which would save us and return us back into the
          presence of God, if we would practice them. These are the men and
          women I am talking to; you know as well as I do that the Gospel
          is true, and my talk is to inspire your hearts and my heart to be
          more faithful to that which we know to be true. It is not
          anything new to you and to me to be told that the kingdom of God
          is on the earth, or to hear the principles of salvation
          proclaimed by the Elders; but it is good to have our hearts
          warmed and inspired, and our desires to be diligent and faithful
          renewed and strengthened. I do not want the train to start
          without me, I want to be on board the good ship Zion, with my
          brethren. So does every soul present, I have no doubt of it. I
          believe that the atheist--the man who has no belief in God, or
          faith in any religion, would like the best berth to be had,
          either on a sailing vessel or steamer, if he saw any chance to
          obtain it. The Latter-day Saints have good berths in view. You
          can testify with me that the Spirit of God has enlightened our
          minds; you can testify with me that the power of God led us to
          these valleys; that prophecies have been uttered in our hearing,
          and we have seen them fulfilled, and we know that God has spoken
          in our day.
          Brethren and sisters, let us be faithful, let us be true to the
          covenants we have made, for if we are, we insure to ourselves
          life and salvation; but, on the other hand, if we are recreant,
          we shall go to destruction. This is the testimony of modern as
          well as ancient revelation; and we need not take our own works to
          convince the people of the error of their ways; there is
          principle enough bound within the lids of this book--the
          Bible--to convince all mankind of the error of their ways, and to
          lead them from darkness to the Lord Almighty, if they felt as
          humble before God as I suppose my brethren and sisters do to-day.
          But it seems that, in the providence of God, things have been
          ordered as they are, that is, he has suffered the wickedness of
          men to transpire in the nations of the earth, and he has suffered
          priests to be raised up to blind the minds of men. Why? Because
          men have their agency to do as their hearts prompt them, and
          there is no power that can prevent them doing this, that or the
          other; but their acts will be over-ruled by a superior power. We
          have our free agency, to think and act just as men think and act,
          independent of the promptings of the Spirit of God; but that is
          not our object, our aim is to do the will of God; and brethren,
          if we could only see the labor and toil that we have to perform
          before we accomplish our salvation, we would bow in humility
          before God and pray him to give us strength as our day.
          Look at the immense number of people who have lived on the earth
          since its creation! In what relationship do we stand to them? Who
          are they? Our progenitors, and millions of them have died without
          the Gospel. What an immense labor opens up before us when we
          think of these things! Millions and hundreds of millions of men
          and women, just as good as we are, according to the knowledge
          they had, must be administered for by us, and we have to build
          temples in which the work for their redemption may be performed.
          We have not only to build temples, but cities; we have to redeem
          the earth, and we have a vast amount of physical labor to do,
          that our progenitors did not have the privilege of doing, it was
          never offered to them, but it has been laid before us in
          plainness and simplicity. We can understand the principle of
          baptism for the dead, it has been made plain to us, and
          administering it, and performing the various duties that will
          arise in building up the kingdom of God, will give us labor for
          centuries. Can we, in view of these duties and responsibilities,
          be idle? Can we fail to seek after the Spirit of God to guide us,
          that we may accomplish these labors? If we do, we shall not only
          deprive ourselves of a great privilege and of great glory, but we
          shall deprive others, perhaps, to some extent, of receiving that
          which is theirs by right; they have lived for it, and they are
          entitled to it at our hands.
          What can injure the Later-day Saints? I will ask Brother Hulse
          here. Does it injure a man to be tarred and feathered? I
          understand that while he was east he was tarred and feathered, or
          ducked, or something of that kind, and I have no doubt he feels
          glad of the persecution. Still, I would not like it just now. Our
          Elders have been tarred and feathered, and they have suffered a
          good deal in their efforts to spread the Gospel of the kingdom;
          but what have they suffered in comparison with the blessings they
          have received? What is there that would induce a man to sacrifice
          that feeling of joy which he experiences when preaching the
          Gospel in the nations? I have heard Elders testify, and it is
          their general experience, that when abroad preaching, depending
          for their food upon strangers, unsustained and unsupported, save
          as the providences of God opened the way before them that they
          have had a feeling of peace and joy such as they never
          experienced before in their lives, and which they would not lose
          for all the wealth on the face of the earth. What is that feeling
          and where does it come from? It is the peace of God, and when a
          man possesses it, his thoughts are not as man's thoughts, and,
          inspired from on high, he goes forth freely, ready to endure any
          trial and to make any sacrifice to declare the principles of life
          and salvation to the people. This is the way that all Latter-day
          Saints should always feel, and they who take this course are
          continually in possession of the spirit of peace; they are worthy
          the name of Saints, and the Scriptures inform us, that from such
          no good thing will be withheld, and if a man wants anything that
          is bad he is not a Saint, he does not belong to that catalogue.
          My exhortation to you is to be faithful. You know the truth,
          honor it by walking uprightly; serve God and you will be the most
          independent men and women on the face of the earth. People come
          amongst us sometimes and declare that there is no independence of
          character amongst the Latter-day Saints, because they do the
          bidding of one man--do just as one man says; but I heard a remark
          made last night, that the Latter-day Saints are the most
          independent people on earth, and I believe it. If it does not
          manifest independence of character for men and women, who have
          been honest and upright all their days, to leave their relatives,
          neighbors, friends and associates, by whom they have always been
          respected, to join the Latter-day Saints and be called everything
          that is mean, where will you find it on the face of the earth.
          Such men have joined the church in the states, and Bishop Hunter
          is an instance. He was respected and honored by his neighbors,
          and was known to have been an honest, upright, God-fearing man
          all his days; and when such men have joined the Church they have
          been talked of in the most scandalous manner. Vituperation has
          been heaped upon them, the papers have slandered them, their
          neighbors have turned against them, and called them thieves,
          robbers, murderers, and everything mean, contemptible and bad.
          But this treatment never changed the character of Bishop Hunter.
          He came to Nauvoo, and was a good Latter-day Saint, a good,
          honest man, faithful and true to his covenants, and he has proved
          so up to the present day. This has been the treatment and the
          course of very many of the members of this Church, and in
          enduring and pursuing it, they have shown an independence of
          character that is rarely equalled. They have also shown
          themselves possessed of inspiration from the Almighty, and when
          men enjoy this, their ways are not as men's ways but as God's
          ways and they are willing to come out and acknowledge God, and to
          enter into covenant to do his will as he makes it known to them.
          This is the position of the Latter-day Saints--when God's will is
          made known to them, the spirit within them testifies to the truth
          thereof, and they know it is their business to perform their part
          of the contract. Who can blame them for doing it? 
          As far as independence is concerned, we are a little too
          independent of God, sometimes. I know that this is the feeling I
          have to contend with. Brethren, let our hearts be uplifted to the
          Almighty! Remember the covenants you have made; they are pure.
          Keep them so. They are holy; keep them so! Do not disgrace them!
          Brethren and sisters, if we value our salvation, temporal and
          spiritual, let us be true to our covenants, and to the God we
          have engaged to serve.
          May God bless you. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 / George
          Q. Cannon, September 8, 1872
                         George Q. Cannon, September 8, 1872
                         DISCOURSE BY ELDER GEORGE Q. CANNON,
                  Delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                        Sunday Afternoon, September 8, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          "Moreover he commanded the people that dwelt in Jerusalem to give
          the portion of the priests and the Levites, that they might be
          encouraged in the law of the Lord.
          "And as soon as the commandment came abroad, the children of
          Israel brought in abundance the first fruits of corn, wine, and
          oil, and honey, and of all the increase of the field; and the
          tithe of all things brought they in abundantly.
          "And concerning the children of Israel and Judah, that dwelt in
          the cities of Judah, they also brought in the tithe of oxen and
          sheep, and the tithe of holy things which were consecrated unto
          the Lord their God, and laid them by heaps.
          "In the third month they began to lay the foundation of the
          heaps, and finished them in the seventh month.
          "And when Hezekiah and the princes came and saw the heaps, they
          blessed the Lord, and his people Israel.
          "Then Hezekiah questioned with the priests and the Levites
          concerning the heaps.
          "And Azariah, the chief priest of the house of Zadok, answered
          him, and said, Since the people began to bring the offerings into
          the house of the Lord, we have had enough to eat, and have left
          plenty: for the Lord hath blessed his people; and that which is
          left is this great store."
          I have read this portion of Scripture, it having suggested itself
          to my mind in view of our condition, and the circumstances which
          surround us as a people. The law of tithing is of very ancient
          origin. How early it was observed by the people of God is not
          clearly set forth in the Scriptures, but we have an account of
          its observance as early as the days of Abraham and Melchizedek.
          We have also, anterior to that, an account given us in the
          Scriptures of the bringing forward of offerings by Cain and Abel,
          one bringing the first fruits of the earth, and the other the
          first fruits of his flocks, as offerings unto the Lord their God.
          From the days of Abraham down to the days of Jesus the Law of
          tithing was observed by the people of God. It was made a
          perpetual ordinance; in fact, the Lord promised unto Aaron and
          his children that it should be an ordinance forever. And there is
          this remarkable fact connected with this law--whenever it was
          strictly observed, the blessings of God rested upon the people,
          and when it was neglected the anger of God was kindled against
          them; and a careful perusal of the Bible reveals to us that
          neglect on the part of the children of Israel to pay tithing was
          one of the most fruitful causes of unbelief, darkness of mind,
          departure from the ways of God, and falling into idolatrous
          I may be asked, why was this the case? Had the Lord need of the
          fruits of the earth? Had he need of the cattle? Had he need of
          the firstborn children? Had he need of a tenth of their gold and
          silver? Was there any necessity for these things to be devoted to
          him because of any want on his part? Of course not. The fruits of
          the earth are his, the cattle on a thousand hills are his, and
          the gold and silver are his, he created them, and he can cover or
          uncover them at his will. The heaven of heavens is his dwelling
          place, and he has no need of a temple built with hands; yet in
          the economy of heaven, in the dealings of God with his children,
          he reveals unto them laws, ordinances and institutions which he
          requires them to observe, and which, when observed, bring
          blessings, but a disregard of which brings down his anger and
          indignation upon them. There is nothing plainer in Scripture than
          God commands his children to believe in him, and to render
          obedience to his laws; he commands them to call upon his Son
          Jesus Christ, or rather, to call upon him in the name of his Son
          Jesus Christ. He commands them to pray unto him; he commands them
          to repent of their sins and to be baptized for their remission,
          to have hands laid upon them for the reception of the Holy Ghost,
          and to observe other ordinances that he has revealed. What for?
          Does prayer to him advance him? Does belief in him contribute
          particularly to his happiness? Does repentance of sin on the part
          of the creature add anything particularly to God's glory? Does
          baptism for the remission of sins have any saving effect upon
          him? Does the laying on of hands for the reception of the Holy
          Ghost have the effect to increase his light, knowledge, wisdom or
          power? We all recognize the fact that these commandments are
          given for man's benefit, to increase his happiness, and to
          prepare him for salvation and exaltation in God's kingdom. So
          also with the law of tithing: it does not, when obeyed by man,
          add to God's comfort, contribute to his wealth, increase his
          happiness, or furnish him with that of which he would be
          destitute if it were not obeyed; but it is given to man and he is
          required to obey it that he may receive the reward, and that he
          may acknowledge by this act--by this payment of the tenth of his
          increase--that all he obtains is the gift, and comes from the
          beneficent hand of God, and that he is dependent upon God. Hence
          Abraham, after returning from the conquest of the kings, when he
          was met by Melchizedek, paid to him the tithes of all,
          acknowledging by this act the divinity of the law, and the
          necessity of obedience thereunto. So strict was the Lord upon
          this point in his dealings with the children of Israel in the
          wilderness, that he gave very strict commandment unto Moses and
          Aaron, and to those who presided over and officiated among the
          people that they were to be very careful to collect, and the
          people were to be very careful to pay their tithing. 
          One object of enforcing this law among Israel in ancient days was
          to sustain the service of the house of God. The tribe of Levi was
          selected from amongst all the other tribes--as the Lord's
          peculiar inheritance. In the division of the land of Canaan among
          the different tribes, the tribe of Levi was left without an
          inheritance. The eleven tribes had their portions of Canaan set
          apart to them under the direction of the servant of God, but the
          tribe of Levi had no inheritance given unto them. They were told
          by the Lord that they were his inheritance, and that which they
          should have as an inheritance should be the tenth of the product
          of all Israel: the tenth of the labor, the tenth of the cattle,
          the tenth of the gold and silver, the tenth of the fruits of the
          earth, and of everything that was produced in the land. And so
          strict was this law, that when an animal passed under the rod, to
          use the expression of Scripture, and thereby became a proper
          animal to be devoted to the service of God, though it were a
          choice animal, and one which the owner of it desired to retain,
          the law provided that it could not be retained: it was devoted to
          the Lord, and was holy on that account. And if the owner of it
          were to substitute another animal instead of it, they both became
          holy unto the Lord, and both became tithing animals and had to be
          dedicated unto him, so strict was the Lord in enforcing this law
          of tithing upon Israel. I often think of the practice which
          prevails among us in this respect, how differently we act to what
          ancient Israel did, and how it would pinch some of us if the law
          of tithing were enforced among us as strictly as it was among
          them. Not only was this the law of tithing, as I have rehearsed
          it, with regard to substitution; but if a man wanted to redeem
          that which was devoted for tithing, a certain valuation was put
          upon it, and in addition to this valuation a certain sum of money
          had to be paid before it could be redeemed. In other words
          tithing had to be paid in kind, and if a man wanted to redeem his
          tithing he had to pay not only the money valuation of it, but an
          additional sum besides, before the redemption could be effected.
          You can readily see, with a little reflection, the object the
          Lord had in being thus strict with his people: it was to prevent
          violations of that law, and to enforce the strictness in
          observing it which was necessary to secure the promised
          I have said that a tenth of all the produce of Israel went to the
          tribe of Levi; the Levites also had to pay a tenth of that which
          they received, and that tenth was given to the priests, those who
          ministered in the priesthood in the midst of the people, so that
          there was in Israel a standing ministry--a tribe chosen from all
          the tribes of Israel, whose office it was to minister in the
          things of God, having been called specially by God to this
          You doubtless recollect that the Lord also required his
          children--the people of Israel--to set part the first-born male
          in every family to be his. They had been redeemed in Egypt, or
          rather they had been saved from the scourge which fell upon all
          the families of Egypt. When God plead with Pharaoh, through
          Mores, to let the people go, destruction fell on all the
          households of Egypt, the firstborn in every one being slain. But
          among the children of Israel the firstborn were spared, and the
          Lord claimed them as his; but it was inconvenient for them to be
          used in the service of the Lord and he, therefore, after Israel
          had left Egypt, commanded that all their firstborn should be
          numbered; and after all of a certain age had been numbered, he
          commanded that the tribe of Levi should be numbered, and upon
          numbering them it was found that the firstborn of Israel
          outnumbered the Levites by two hundred and seventy-three, if I
          remember aright. The Lord had already stated that it was his
          intention to take the tribe of Levi instead of the firstborn of
          Israel, and when it was found that the firstborn outnumbered the
          Levites by two hundred and seventy-three he commanded that they
          should be redeemed, and that the redemption money should be
          handed over to the tribe of Levi.
          These were very singular laws and ordinances, but God had a
          design in view in enforcing them. Everything he does is dictated
          by infinite wisdom, and when the people strictly complied with
          these laws and ordinances I have mentioned the Lord blessed them
          in all things, so much so that it became a proverb in the midst
          of Israel--"Honor the Lord with thy substance and with the first
          fruits of thy increase, so shall thy barns be filled with plenty,
          and thy presses burst forth with new wine." When the people
          honored the Lord with their substance his blessings rested upon
          them and they were prospered. The palmer worm, blight,
          grasshopper and other evils which afflicted the land under some
          circumstances, were removed far from them. Their trees did not
          cast their fruit untimely, and they produced in abundance, and
          Israel prospered and waxed fat in the land. They spread abroad on
          the right hand and on the left, and the land teemed with
          fertility. There were times when Israel neglected this law, when
          they fell into idolatry, became careless and indifferent
          concerning the requirements of the Lord; when the tribe of Levi
          forsook the service of God and became idolaters; when the priests
          quit the service of Jehovah, and the temples became desecrated
          and filled with rubbish. It was during one of these periods that
          Hezekiah came to the throne of his father Ahaz, who had allowed
          the ordinances of God to fall into disuse. He put aside the
          service of God and instituted in its stead idolatrous service.
          Tithing had been neglected, and when Hezekiah came to the throne,
          his heart being set in him to do right, he commenced to cleanse
          the temple, and to restore the ordinances of the house of God,
          and the ministers who had been set apart to this service he
          called back to its performance, and the people brought in their
          cattle, wine, oil, honey, and in fact a tithe of all their
          substance as well as freewill offerings unto the Lord; and when
          the king looked upon it, we are told, in the words which I have
          read, that he blessed the Lord and his people Israel, and upon
          inquiry of the chief priest he was told that "since the people
          began to bring in the offerings into the house of the Lord, we
          have had enough to eat, and have left plenty, for the Lord hath
          blessed his people." The Lord blessed them because they had
          complied with his requirements, and they were prospered. The land
          prospered under their cultivation, and it yielded its strength in
          In connection with this I would like to read to you, my brethren
          and sisters, the remarks of Malachi. You are doubtless familiar
          with them, but they are words which can be read and pondered on
          time and time again, without any loss of interest in the subject.
          Says Malachi--
          "Even from the days of your fathers ye are gone away from mine
          ordinances, and have not kept them. Return unto me, and I will
          return unto you, saith the Lord of hosts. But ye said, wherein
          shall we return? "Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But
          ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings.
          "Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me, even this
          whole nation.
          "Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be
          meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of
          hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you
          out a blessing, that there will not be room enough to receive
          And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not
          destroy the fruits of your ground, neither shall your vine cast
          her fruit before the time in the field, saith the Lord of hosts.
          "And all nations shall call you blessed: for ye shall be a
          delightsome land, saith the Lord of hosts."
          We see here portrayed, in the most graphic and striking language,
          the blessings that God promised unto his people Israel when they
          observed this law, which he had given them in the beginning; and
          we can also understand from the statements of Malachi, the curses
          that would descend upon Israel if they did not observe this law.
          "Ye are cursed with a curse," says he, "for ye have robbed me,
          even this whole people." Strange language for God to use to his
          people, it may be thought, that they should be accused of
          robbery, that he should look upon them as thieves, as
          appropriating that which was no theirs, because they did not
          render unto him that which he had commanded them. They had
          refused their tithes, they had withheld their offerings, and
          consequently they were cursed. "But," says she "bring in your
          tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house,
          and prove me now, herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will
          not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing,
          that there shall not be room enough to receive it," etc. What
          great promises are herein conveyed to God's people!
          I have drawn your attention to this law, my brethren and sisters,
          to show you what it was in the days of Israel, when God
          communicated his mind and will unto his people. I wish to impress
          upon you this fact, which you can all realize and understand for
          yourselves if you will read, that when Israel served God, and
          were strict in observing this law, he blessed and prospered them,
          and his favor was shown towards them; but when they neglected
          this law, his anger and indignation were kindled against them,
          and one of the most fruitful causes of disaster to Israel was
          their neglect in this particular. There were two things connected
          with Israel's disasters: one was neglecting to observe the laws
          of God, prominent among which was the law of tithing; and the
          other was their intermarriages with the heathen nations--those
          who were idolaters. This proved the destruction of the wisest
          king that ever reigned in Israel. It proved the destruction of
          the nation itself, for it brought disaster and ruin upon it.
          There is something connected with the law of tithing that, when
          men do not have faith in God, appeals to their selfishness; and
          for a people to be wholehearted in its observance, they need
          faith in God. When Israel began to decline in faith in God, their
          selfishness increased, and their determination became stronger
          and stronger to grasp everything within their reach and to retain
          everything they gained possession of; and as this feeling grew,
          tithing and freewill offerings were withheld from the house of
          God, and in consequence of this the blessing of God was also
          withheld. There is a passage in the book of Amos on this subject,
          which shows the Lord pleading with Israel, to bring them back to
          the consideration of this law, as well as others that he had
          given them. The Lord says through the Prophet Amos--
          "And also I have withholden the rain from you, when there were
          yet three months to the harvest: and I caused it to rain upon one
          city and caused it not to rain upon another city: one piece was
          rained upon, and the piece whereupon it rained not withered.
          "So two or three cities wandered into one city, to drink water;
          but they were not satisfied: yet have ye not returned unto me,
          saith the Lord.
          "I have smitten you with blasting and mildew: when your gardens
          and your vineyards and your fig trees and your olive trees
          increased, the palmer-worn devoured them: yet have ye not
          returned unto me, saith the Lord."
          These are the calamities which God sent upon Israel with the
          intention to have them return to him; but notwithstanding they
          were poured out and pestilence visited the land, the people
          hardened their hearts against him, broke his laws and violated
          his ordinances, and his anger was enkindled against them, and
          they were driven out from the face of the land.
          This law of tithing has been revealed to the Latter-day Saints.
          If I remember aright, the last revelation in the Book of Doctrine
          and Covenants, given as a revelation, is one in which this people
          are commanded to observe this law of tithing for ever. With the
          restoration of the Gospel in its fullness and purity there has
          also been restored this law, and I am thankful to God for its
          revelation. I am thankful for the restoration of every principle
          of truth, of every law that pertains unto salvation, for they are
          all for the benefit of the human family; and as long as the
          Latter-day Saints have observed this law they have been blessed;
          and we know by our own experience with grasshoppers--the Lord's
          great army--how easily he could collect his dues from ancient
          Israel if they robbed him by neglecting or refusing to pay their
          When men have come to this desert land and have seen the changes
          that have been wrought in such a brief space of time, they have
          wondered what has been the reason of it. The promise of God has
          been given to this people as it was to ancient Israel upon this
          point, and when the Latter-day Saints have observed the law of
          tithing they have been favored of God, and his Spirit has rested
          upon them, and not only upon them but also upon the land, and
          where it was once so barren, unfruitful and forbidding that it
          looked as though no human being could live by cultivating it, it
          has been converted into a fruitful field. Men say, "What
          wonderful results water has produced!" "What a great system this
          irrigation is which you practice!" True, it is a wonderful
          system, it is productive of wonderful results; but to my way of
          thinking, or according to my views, these results are due to the
          blessing of God on the labors of the Latter-day Saints, because
          they have honored him by observing the law of tithing. We have
          looked upon this land as the Lord's, and have viewed ourselves as
          his tenants. He could not come down here in person and receive
          from us the first fruits of the soil, or take our cattle, our
          gold and silver, or any of our manufactures. Hence there must be
          somebody to do it for him. In ancient days the children of Levi
          acted in this capacity: they received the tithes and offerings,
          but in these last days, there being none of the descendants of
          Aaron that we know of in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day
          Saints, to act in this capacity, we have been under the necessity
          of choosing other men to hold the authority which his seed would
          hold if they were here in our midst, and they have been set apart
          for the purpose of looking after temporal things, and to take or
          collect the tithing, and see that it is properly managed and
          appropriated to the uses for which it is designed.
          I know how quickly men, in looking at "Mormonism" come to the
          conclusion that it is a system by which a certain class will be
          benefited and built up. I have heard men say that the "Mormon"
          Elders had a pretty good thing of it; that Brigham Young, as
          President of the Church, had a very nice arrangement, and that
          those who were leaders in the Church had every reason for
          desiring to retain their position, imagining, of course--though I
          do not know why such an imagination should be prompted unless it
          was because they judged us as they judged one another--that all
          the means that is devoted by the people for the payment of
          tithing is appropriated by President Young and those associated
          with him in conducting the affairs of the Church.
          Now I would not, as a speculation, endure for one month, that
          which President Young has to pass through--the care,
          responsibility, obloquy, and the weight that rests upon him
          continually, for the sake of the tithing alone, if I could have
          it all. He would not, no other man who is connected with this
          people would. Why do they endure that which they pass through?
          Because, by the revelations of God, they know that God has
          established his Church once more in its fullness upon the earth,
          because they know that angels have come from heaven to earth,
          because they know that the holy priesthood has been again
          bestowed upon man, with the authority to administer in the
          ordinances of Gods house, as in ancient days; and because this
          work is established by the commandment of God, and they are
          called by his command to labor in it. But there is one advantage
          which this unbelieving generation have over those which have
          preceded us, and I think, in view of the selfishness which
          prevails to-day in the midst of mankind, it is a wise provision.
          If there had been a tribe set apart in this generation to receive
          the tithing, I do not know but what the people, universally
          almost, would have rebelled against it. If there had been a
          privileged class to receive the tithing, the unbelief and
          selfishness of man would have prompted them to find great fault
          with it. But there is this peculiarity about the work in these
          days--not only do the people pay their tithing, but the ministers
          of life and salvation pay theirs--if they do not they should do,
          and I believe they do--as punctually as the humblest member of
          the Church, from President Young down--his Counsellors, the
          Quorum of the Twelve, the Bishops of the Church, every faithful
          man pays his tithing, the highest in the Church as well as he
          whose name is scarcely known beyond the narrow circle in which he
          moves; and, instead of the tithing going to sustain a class, as
          it did in ancient days the tribe of Levi, or the priests, it goes
          to build up the work of God--to erect temples and in various
          other ways. Thousands and thousands of dollars have been spent in
          sustaining the poor, and there is no class of men sustained in
          the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by the tithing.
          There is this difference between ministers in this Church and
          ministers in other churches; ministers in this church have to
          labor for their own support; but in other churches they are
          supported wholly by the people. On this account--in
          Massachusetts, if I remember aright--ministers are not allowed to
          be elected to the legislature; they are regarded as men unfit for
          the practical duties of life. Men who devote themselves
          exclusively to the service of their churches go into their
          studies, read and fix up their sermons, and, on the Sabbath day,
          they deliver their written, prepared discourses to their
          congregations, and they are the most impractical men connected
          with their churches. The ministry of the Church of Jesus Christ
          of Latter-day Saints is in direct and striking contrast with
          this. The leaders of this Church are the most practical men in
          it. The President of this Church is the most practical man
          connected with the body. His Counselors, the Twelve Apostles and
          the leading Elders and Bishops are all distinguished for being
          practical men--men perfectly capable of doing everything
          connected with a life in these mountains--men who are able to
          sustain themselves and to help to sustain others. Our theory is
          that a man who can not sustain himself and also teach others how
          to sustain themselves is unfit for a leading position, and he
          becomes a drone in the great hive. On that account we compel or
          require every minister in this Church to sustain himself. Jesus
          said that he who is greatest among you let him be the servant of
          all, and we have carried this into effect--the servant of the
          whole people is the President of the Church. The man who is the
          greatest servant in a settlement is the President of the
          settlement, or the Bishop of a ward. He lives for the people, his
          time is devoted to their service, looking after their interests,
          that is, if he does right and magnifies his calling. Is there a
          helpless man in a ward? He becomes the object of the Bishop's
          solicitude and care. Is there a family in indigence? Then they
          are the wards of the Bishop, and he looks after them, and visits
          them or sees that his teachers do, and that their wants are
          supplied. By this means the ministry in the Church of Jesus
          Christ of Latter-day Saints is an active one, carrying the
          blessings of spiritual and temporal salvation into the midst of
          the people.
          It has been by the labors of such men that this community has
          been founded, and this once barren desert changed into a fruitful
          field and made to blossom as the rose. Through the labors of the
          Apostles, Elders and Bishops of this Church, settlements have
          been extended to the remotest bounds of the Territory, north,
          south, east and west. They have been the pioneers in all great
          labors, not saying to the people, Give us of your wealth and
          substance, we want to be sustained in idleness, that we may rule
          over you;" but on the contrary they have said, Come, brethren,
          let us go and accomplish this labor that God has laid upon us."
          They have been the pioneers in all these labors--these Apostles,
          Presidents, Bishops, Dignitaries, these men who are supposed to
          fatten on the labors of the people. Instead of doing that, they
          have been the creators of the wealth that the people now enjoy;
          they have been the fathers of the people, the people have been
          the objects of their paternal care from the beginning until
          to-day. I would not give a fig for a leading man who would not
          act in this capacity; he is worth nothing, and deserves no place
          in the midst of the people of God. Men to save their fellow-men
          and to be ministers of Jesus Christ must have the spirit of
          Jesus. His spirit was one of self-sacrifice, one that prompted
          him to go forth and save the people, not to be a burden upon
          them, not to crush them. That is priestcraft; and wherever that
          system prevails a system of despicable priestcraft prevails, and
          God is angry with it and with those who practice it.
                I have said that I thank God for the revelation of this
          principle. I do, for this reason--it appeals directly to man's
          selfishness. It makes men sacrifice their selfish feelings, and
          causes them to show faith in God. If a man has not faith in God
          he is not very likely to pay tithing, or make many offerings. To
          use a common expression, he looks after "number one," and
          self-interest rules him. Such a man is an unworthy member of the
          Church of Christ. But when every man pays his tithing and
          witnesses unto God that that law is honorable in his sight, what
          is the result? Is anybody impoverished by it? No. Are we as
          Latter-day Saints any poorer because of the tithing we have paid?
          Not one cent. When that tithing is properly appropriated it is
          expended in works which add to the wealth of the entire
          community. It contributes to the erection of public edifices; it
          adorns those edifices, and creates a fund that is exclusively
          devoted to the work of God, and that helps to build up and to
          make the community prosperous and respectable in the earth. It is
          a mighty engine or would be if properly wielded, in establishing
          righteousness and truth in the earth, for let me say, brethren
          and sisters, that a warfare has been commenced in the earth, and
          it has been waged for a long series of years, speaking according
          to the length of a man's life; and that warfare or contest is for
          this earth, and it is between God and Satan.
          Men wonder why it is that the "Mormon" community, with their good
          qualities, their love of temperance and good order, and whose
          members conduct themselves with such propriety, are so hated. It
          has been frequently remarked to our Elders--"you are a pretty
          good man, I would not take you to be a 'Mormon,' I would think
          you are a man of too much intelligence to be a Latter-day Saint,"
          as though, to be a member of this Church a man must be an
          ignoramus, stupid blockhead, knave or fool in the estimation of
          those not of our faith. God has not chosen that kind of a people,
          he has chosen intelligent people, and he will give them greater
          intelligence. But the reason we are hated is this--and it is the
          same reason that Jesus and his Apostles were hated--we have the
          truth, because we have received the revelations of God, and
          because, in singleness of purpose, we are endeavoring to build up
          the kingdom of God. Let any other people do what we have done and
          they would be lauded to the skies. Let any other man do what our
          leader has done and his fame, as a benefactor of his race, would
          be worldwide. But our labors are only an additional reason for
          hating us and for warring against us. It is, as I have said,
          because there is a warfare in the world, and it will not end
          until God is victorious and the earth is redeemed from sin.
          I will revert now to the contrast there is between our desert
          land and the lands from which we came. Our people were organized
          in the State of New York--a most fruitful State. From New York
          they moved to Ohio, another most fruitful State. From Ohio they
          moved to Missouri, the garden, it might be said, of the United
          States; and from Missouri to Illinois--all rich and productive
          States. What is the result of our removals? We came to a land
          that was a barren, uninviting desert, and what are the remarks of
          visitors who come here now from the lands we formerly lived in?
          They wonder how it is that our fruit trees are so healthy, and
          that our land is so inviting. I honestly believe, if the people
          of the United States would observe this law of tithing, devoting
          a tenth of their substance to the service of the Most High, that
          instead of this land being in many respects so superior, the
          fertility which formerly prevailed there would be restored. And
          when the day shall come, as come it will, when we shall go
          back--and we expect to go back to Jackson County, Missouri, and
          to lay the foundation of a temple, and to build a great city to
          be called the centre stake of Zion, as much as we expect to see
          the sun rise to-morrow; I say when that day shall come it will be
          found that that country will have its old fertility restored, and
          that and all the lands that the people of God will occupy will be
          healthy and fruitful; and the land of any people who will honor
          God by obeying this law of tithing will be made fruitful to them,
          God will bless their industry, and they will rejoice and prosper
          There are many things connected with this subject that might be
          touched upon. One thing I will mention before I sit down, and
          that is the growing tendency among this people to look after
          their own interests and to neglect the interests of the work of
          God. This remark has often been made to us: "When you Latter-day
          Saints increase in wealth, are surrounded by the fashions of the
          world, and the waves of civilization surge against your walls of
          barbarism, all your peculiarities will recede and melt away, and
          you will become like other people. Your plural system will
          disappear, for no man can sustain half a dozen wives if they are
          fashionable women, and no more than one." I have heard this time
          and time again; and it is true that young men in the east will
          not marry because of the expense, they do not want to take a wife
          because they can not sustain her according to the requirements of
          modern society. Now, there is a good deal of truth in this
          statement. If I thought we would become subject to the follies
          that now prevail I would have fears concerning the work of God
          and its perpetuity on the earth. If I thought that this people
          would lust after wealth, and that they would allow their feelings
          and their hearts to become set on the accumulation of money, and
          that they would think more of that than they do of God and his
          work, I would fear for its perpetuity. But God has said this work
          shall stand for ever, and that it shall not be given into the
          hands of another people, and on that account I do not entertain
          any fears as to the result. But there are individuals in this
          community who have given way to these feelings about tithing.
          When men are poor, it is noticed that they are punctual in paying
          it, but when they increase in wealth it is less so. For instance,
          when a man has ten thousand dollars it looks a big pile to give
          one thousand as tithing. If a man's tithing amounted to no more
          than five, ten, twenty, or even a hundred dollars, says he, "I
          can give that, but a thousand is a great amount," and when called
          upon to give a thousand, no, I will not say "called upon," the
          difficulty is we are not called upon enough, there has been
          neglect in calling upon us; but when it comes to this, why a
          thousand dollars looks like a very large sum, and the party whose
          duty it is to pay it is apt to hesitate and feel reluctance, and
          he perhaps says, "I can invest this thousand dollars in such and
          such a way, and it will produce so much interest, and I will pay
          it then;" and he allows himself to be satisfied with this course.
          There is this remarkable fact connected with tithing in our
          midst. You are all familiar with the apostacy of some of our
          leading merchants--men who dealt in merchandize and who, for
          years, by their exorbitant prices literally fleeced the people of
          their means. This was before the construction of the railroads.
          Well, it was predicted years before, that sooner or later they
          would deny the faith and leave the Church. It was easily
          understood that no man could remain in the Church, if it was a
          pure Church, and practice a system of extortion on his brethren,
          and the prediction was made, and strange as it may seem--though
          it is not strange to those who understand the working of these
          things--it was fulfilled to the very letter, and those men did
          deny the faith, and they are now opponents of that work which
          they once testified they knew to be true; and an examination of
          the tithing records would show this remarkable fact--that some of
          them did not pay their tithing as they should have done. Those
          who have prospered most are they who paid their tithing honestly.
          And I have noticed it, as an individual, that when men close up
          their hearts in this direction, and neglect their tithing, and
          their offerings on fast days for the benefit of the poor, they
          lose their faith. This is one evidence of the loss of faith and
          confidence in the work.
          I will tell you how I feel now, if I were to be tempted in his
          direction, I would say, "Mr. Devil, I have no lot or part with
          you. I will pay my tithing, and if you say anything I will double
          it. I know that there is a blessing attending this. I know God
          prospers those who are strict and punctual in attending to this.
          I know he blesses those who feed the poor, clothe the naked and
          attend to the wants of their indigent brethren and sisters. I
          should deplore the increase of wealth in our midst if it created
          class distinctions, if it should create a feeling that, "I am
          better than thou, because I wear a finer coat, dwell in a better
          house, ride in a finer carriage and have finer horses, or because
          my children are better schooled and better dressed than yours." I
          should deplore the increase of wealth among us if such results
          were witnessed. I should expect the anger of God would be kindled
          against us, and that we should be scourged as a people until we
          repented in deep humility before him.
          God has bestowed upon us the earth and the elements in and around
          it, and he has given us them for our good. There is no sin in
          taking the wool from the sheep's back and spinning and
          manufacturing it into fine broadcloth. There is no sin in
          planting mulberry trees and feeding silk-worms and making fine
          dresses and ribbons with the silk which they produce. There is no
          sin in spinning the flax and making fine linen of it. There is no
          sin in taking the dyes that abound in nature and dying these
          silks and other fabrics in the most beautiful manner. There is no
          sin in digging gold and ornamenting our service with it, and in
          covering our tables in the Lord's house therewith. There is no
          sin in taking silver and making furniture for the Lord's house.
          There is no sin in making fine carriages, and in painting and
          fitting them up in the most exquisite manner. There is no sin in
          having a noble race of horses, or a fine breed of cattle. There
          is no sin in building houses and decorating them, having fine
          furniture, carpets, mirrors, baths, heating apparatus and every
          appliance and convenience of modern civilization therein. There
          is no sin in all this, or in any blessing God has given us, but
          there is sin in abusing these things. There is sin in being
          lifted up in pride because God has bestowed them upon us. There
          is sin in thinking, "I am better than another man who is created
          out of the dust of the earth, as I am; who is a child of God, as
          I am; who came from God, as I did, and who will go to God as I
          hope to do." Brethren and sisters, there is no sin in having what
          I have named. We may have fine houses, fine gardens or orchards,
          glorious temples, a fine land, and we may make our homes heavenly
          places, and fit for angels to visit, and there is nothing wrong
          in all this, neither in adorning the bodies God has given unto
          us, if our hearts are humble before him, and we glorify him in
          our lives. But this is the great difficulty and has been from the
          beginning. When wealth multiplies the people get lifted up in the
          pride of their hearts, and they look down on their poor brethren
          and despise them, because they are better educated, have better
          manners, and speak better language--in a word, because they have
          advantages which their poor brethren and sisters have not. There
          is sin in this, and God is angry with a people who take this
          course. He wants us to be equal in earthly things, as we are in
          heavenly. He wants no poor among his people; he does not want the
          cry of the oppressed to ascend from the midst of the Latter-day
          Saints, and God forbid that it ever should! God forbid that the
          cry of any should ever ascend from the midst of the Latter-day
          Saints because of oppression or because of the lack of any
          blessing necessary for comfort! God wants us to feed the hungry,
          clothe the naked, and impart our substance for their support. But
          he does not want the poor to envy the rich. That is just as great
          a sin on their part as for the rich to oppress them. They must
          not envy the rich; they must not look on their brethren and
          sisters and envy them that which they have. That is sinful, that
          is wrong, and the man or woman who indulges in it, indulges in a
          wrong spirit. God wants us to build each other up in
          righteousness. He wants us to love one another and to seek one
          another's benefit. This is the spirit of the Gospel of Jesus
          Christ. He has revealed it unto us, and we must cultivate it.
          I look upon this law of tithing as an equitable law: it comes
          alike upon the rich and the poor. The poor person who pays his
          ten dollars tithing gives as much in proportion as the richest
          man in the community. The rich gives no more than a tenth, and
          the poorest gives no less. We are all alike, then, in this
          respect when we observe this law of tithing; and it should be
          strictly observed by us, if we want the blessings of God to rest
          upon us.
          I have thought, I do not know how truly, that of late there has
          been a disposition among the Latter-day Saints to be penurious in
          this respect. it has seemed to me that with the increase of God's
          blessings around us, a disposition has been manifest to be
          stingy, to withhold our substance, and to tie up the hands of
          those who have the great work to perform. We want to build this
          temple, and other temples in other parts of our land. We want to
          fill the land with temples--houses that shall be dedicated to the
          Most High God. At the present time people in St. George and other
          settlements in that region--from 350 to 400 miles from this city
          who wish to be married according to the order and ordinances that
          we believe in and view as necessary, have to make this long
          journey one way, and the same the other, making 700 or 800 miles
          travel, to have the ordinances of God's house solemnized as we
          believe they ought to be. What a labor this is! This has to be
          We are building a temple in Salt Lake City; but this is only one.
          There will be doubtless a temple built in St. George, and
          probably others in the north, east, west, and throughout the
          land. Do you think the tithing is all going to be spent in Salt
          Lake City? Do you think that the remote settlements are all going
          to contribute of their strength and their increase to build up
          this city alone? No, this would not be right: this would be
          filling the heart and letting the extremities suffer. The
          extremities must be sustained. Tithing must be devoted to the
          building of temples and places of worship, so that the Latter-day
          Saints in every section of the Territory may go and attend to the
          ordinances for the living and the dead. We have a mighty work to
          do in this connection. God has revealed this law, and, as I have
          said, it is a law that works alike upon all. It is not oppressive
          on any class, but it is distributed equally upon all classes. Let
          us observe it, and all the laws of God, that we may become a
          blessed people; that we may increase in wealth, and use that
          wealth to the glory of God; that there may be neither pauperism,
          want, nor ignorance throughout our entire land, and that the
          grateful prayers of a blessed and happy people may ascend from
          every habitation throughout all these valleys unto the Lord of
          hosts, praising his holy name for the numerous blessings which he
          has bestowed upon us, for the peace, good order, union and every
          other blessing we have received from him.
          That this may be the case is my prayer in the name of Jesus,
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 /
          Brigham Young, October 9, 1872
                            righam Young, October 9, 1872
            Delivered at the 42nd Semi-Annual Conference, Salt Lake City,
                                  October 9, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                         OF RIGHTEOUS COMBINATION OF LABOR.
          I want to express my feelings to the Latter-day Saints upon
          certain points of business which pertain to our welfare, and I
          wish to do it without being obliged to raise my voice so high and
          so loud as to infringe upon the organs of speech to that degree
          that I shall have to stop. If the people will be still, they can
          hear me in my common voice perfectly easy. I will not go into all
          the details with regard to the duties of the Latter-day Saints,
          and their desires, as they have manifested them by gathering out
          from the world, and assembling themselves together. They
          generally understand them, and they can read for themselves the
          doctrines of the Church, and the reasons why we are gathered
          together. But I wish now to impress on the minds of the people
          the necessity of our taking a course to be able to exist and to
          sustain ourselves--to have something to eat and wear--hats to put
          on our heads, and coats, mantles, blankets, vests, shirts,
          garments and other things suitable to wear and to make our bodies
          comfortable, provided that the Lord should knock the underpinning
          from under Babylon. The time will come when Babylon will fall. If
          it should fall now, it would leave us pretty destitute. We would
          soon wear out our head dresses and fine clothing, and what should
          we do? Why, we should be as badly off as the Saints were when
          they came into this valley, twenty-five years ago. They picked up
          a few buckskins, antelope skins, sheepskins, buffalo skins, and
          made leggings and moccasins of them, and wrapped the buffalo
          robes around them. Some had blankets and some had not; some had
          shirts, and I guess some had not. One man told me that he had not
          a shirt for himself or family. If Babylon should happen to tip
          over, so that we could not reach out and gather the necessaries
          of life, we should be in a bad condition. I want to put you in
          mind of these things, and it is my duty to say to the Latter-day
          Saints that they should take measures to sustain themselves--they
          should lay a foundation for feeding and clothing themselves.
          You are well aware that there has been a great deal of money
          spent in this Territory to get machinery for the purpose of
          working up the wool and cotton, and I think you are pretty well
          aware that there have been a great many thousand words spoken to
          the Latter-day Saints in these valleys, upon the necessity of
          raising sheep, though we have had a tide of opposition against
          this. Still, wool-raising is now proven to be a success in these
          mountains, any and all of the Bishops to the contrary
          notwithstanding. This is a fine wool growing country, no better
          in the world. We have proved this; and we have got a great deal
          of machinery here to work up the wool, most of which is now
          standing still for the want of wool. Many of those who have been
          prevailed upon to raise sheep, have got so covetous and love
          money so well that they must sell their wool for money, and send
          it out of the country, in consequence of which the factories are
          now standing still. I think there are a few who will recollect
          that, in the excitement of purchasing wool here last May, June
          and July, in many instances I refused to buy their wool. If I
          would have paid a little more than agents from the east, I could
          have got it; in some instances I got it for a little less. I
          bought some and let a good deal go, and told the people with whom
          I conversed upon the subject, that I would let the buying of wool
          alone until fall, then I thought I could send east, buy my wool
          and ship it back here, and I believe I could get it cheaper than
          I could get it then. And it is now verily so, for I can send to
          Philadelphia, New York, Boston, or anywhere in the eastern
          country, and buy wool and ship it back here from 10 to 30 percent
          cheaper than I could buy it here last spring. I can send west and
          buy wool and ship it here and save a still higher per centage.
          This is the difference in the price of wool last spring and the
          fore part of the summer, and now what our friends and brethren
          who own factories will do with regard to purchasing wool, I am
          not able to say. Some of them, probably, are able to buy wool,
          and quite a number are not, and they who are not will, in all
          probability, let their factories stand still.
          I want the brethren and sisters to take an interest in sustaining
          ourselves here in these mountains. It is the duty of the Bishops
          to see that the members of their Wards take a course that will
          build up the kingdom of God, not only in providing food and
          raiment, but see that the people do their duty with regard to the
          law of God in preserving themselves in purity. My mind is now
          upon those things which some people call temporal, and I wish to
          urge them upon the Latter-day Saints. I want them to save their
          wool and to keep it in this Territory. If we have not factories
          sufficient to work up all the wool that grows in this Territory,
          and in these mountains, we will send and get more machinery, and
          build more factories, and work up the wool for the people. It is
          the duty of those who grow wool to keep it here. It is the duty
          of the wife of the man who owns sheep to look to it, and see that
          that wool is not sold and carried out of the country. It is the
          duty of the Bishops to see these men, and urge upon them the
          necessity of keeping the wool in the mountains where it can be
          worked up; and the Bishops should set the example themselves. We
          expect they do; if they do not, they are not fit for Bishops. It
          is the duty of the Bishops to see the wives of these men and
          their children, that they may prevail on their greedy, covetous
          fathers or husbands, who would sacrifice the prosperity of the
          kingdom of God for a little worldly wealth, and see that they do
          not run distracted or go crazy over a little money. I say the
          Bishops should see to it, that these men who have sheep act like
          rational, reasonable men. What are you here for? What did you
          come for? Virtually you all say you left Babylon and came here to
          build up the kingdom of God; but our acts speak as loud, and
          little louder than our words can. We witness to one another and
          to the Heavens, and to all people, that we believe in building up
          the kingdom of God on the earth. There is an item that ought to
          be before the Latter-day Saints with regard to the kingdom as it
          will be built up. They ought to teach themselves--read the
          Scriptures, the Old and New Testament, the prophecies, what the
          Savior and his Apostles have said, and what has been delivered to
          us in the latter days, and compare them, and then draw their own
          conclusions, and see if they are under the necessity of working
          temporally, literally, manually, physically for the building up
          of the kingdom of heaven. I say that we are or it never will be
          built up. With regard to the fundamental facts of our doctrines,
          we can not show to any person that we have faith therein, except
          by our works. If I were now in the world, and an Elder was to
          come along and preach, and I were to go and hear him, the act of
          walking to the meeting house or to the private dwelling house,
          would be manual labor. I might believe every word such an Elder
          said in preaching the Gospel, but if I never took any steps
          towards fulfilling his requirements who would know anything about
          it? Nobody on the face of the earth. Would there be any
          manifestation that I had faith? Not the least in the world, and
          if it started to grow in my heart while listening to the Elder,
          without works on my part it would soon die out and cease to
          exist. If I do believe, it is a manual labor to get up and say to
          the people, "I believe that what this man has said is true." That
          is an exercise of the body, and a temporal labor. Well, this
          Elder says, we should repent of our sins. I do repent. He says we
          should obey the Gospel, and the first thing after having faith or
          believing it, is to go down into the waters of baptism, and to do
          that is a temporal act, physical labor; and the act of baptism by
          him is also a temporal act or labor. And so in everything else
          with regard to the Gospel and the building up of the kingdom of
          God on the earth--we must have works or we can not have faith. I
          can not divide between the two. The Elder is preaching, I
          believe, I confess and obey, and I can not, for my soul, divide
          the temporal, the manual, the physical labor form the internal
          faith and hope and joy which the spirit gives, and which cause
          obedience in my acts.
          I wish to make this application right here to the Latter-day
          Saints. If we believe that God is about to establish his kingdom
          upon the earth, we believe firmly that we have got to perform a
          manual, temporal labor to bring this about. If the kingdom of
          this world ever become the kingdoms of our God and his Christ, it
          will be by his people conforming to the plans instituted for the
          establishment of a kingdom here on the earth. You may call it
          temporal, no matter what it is called, it is territory, it is
          dominion. In the first place we must have territory, then we must
          have people; and in order to organize this kingdom, we must have
          officers and laws to govern or control the subjects. To make the
          organization of a kingdom perfect, we must have every appendage
          necessary and proper, so that the Savior can come and reign king
          of nations as he does king of Saints. We shall be under the
          necessity of raising breadstuff and then we shall want to eat it.
          We shall have to raise our fruit as well as eat it; we shall have
          to raise our vegetables as well as eat them. We shall be under
          the necessity then of making hats or of going without them; we
          shall be under the necessity of making clothing--coats, vests,
          pants, shirts and so on, or else go without them. We shall be
          under the necessity of having courts organized, unless all are in
          the Lord and all walk in his way; if that were the case I do not
          know that we should want any sheriff, marshals, constables
          magistrates, jurors, judges or governors, because the word of the
          Lord would govern and control every person; but until that time
          arrives we shall want officers, so that we will be prepared to
          reckon with the transgressor, and we shall have transgressors in
          building this kingdom, for it will be some time yet before all
          are in the Lord. The law is for the transgressor, consequently we
          must have officers, and we already have in this kingdom as now
          organized all the officers necessary, every quorum, every
          organization, every court and authority necessary to rule all the
          nations that ever were or ever will be upon the earth, if they
          serve God, or try to do so. But if we must have an organization
          after the order and wishes of those who are ignorant of the
          things of God, we must have political and municipal
          organizations. Kingdoms are organized to suit the conditions of
          the people, whether the government is that of the people, in the
          hands of a few individuals, or centred in one. But the kingdom of
          heaven, when organized upon the earth, will have every officer,
          law and ordinance necessary for the managing of those who are
          unruly, or who transgress its laws, and to govern those who
          desire to do right, but can not quite walk to the line; and all
          these powers and authorities are in existence in the midst of
          this people.
          Now, we have this kingdom organized here upon the earth, and we
          shall be under the necessity, by and by, of understanding this,
          or we will be left in a very destitute condition. It is my duty
          to say to the people that it is their duty to make their
          clothing; and permit me to say, still further, upon the subject
          of the fashion of cutting cloth and putting it together again,
          that it is most useless, unbecoming and ridiculous. The present
          custom of many is such that I would as soon see a squaw go
          through the streets with a very little on, as to see clothing
          piled up until it reaches, perhaps, the top of the hedge or fence
          its wearer is passing. If I do not say much about such customs
          and fashions, I shall probably skip over some naughty words. In
          my feelings they are positively ridiculous, they are so useless
          and unbecoming. Do you recollect a fashion there was a few years
          ago, that has now nearly ceased when a woman could not walk
          through the streets without holding her clothes two feet in front
          of her if her arm was long enough? I shall not say what I thought
          of those who followed this fashion. Now it is on the other side,
          and I do not know but they will get two humps on their backs,
          they have one now, and if they get to be dromedaries it will be
          no wonder, not the least in the world. I recollect a fashion of
          cutting up cloth some forty years ago, that was very peculiar. A
          lady would go into a store and say to a merchant, "I would like
          to get a dress pattern this morning." "Very well, what will you
          have?" "Oh, bring down your goods and show them. This suits
          pretty well! I think I will take this." "Madame," says the
          merchant, "If you will buy the sleeves, I will give you the
          dress." This, of course, is jocosely said. I refer now to what
          was called the "mutton-legged" sleeve--by comparison it took
          seven yards for the sleeves, and three for the dress. That was
          the way they dressed then. How unbecoming! How unbecoming it is
          to see ladies dress as they do in some places at the present day.
          Then another fashion is to wear their dresses short in front,
          walking through the streets, and a long train dragging in the
          dirt behind. How unbecoming! This is not modesty, gentility, or
          good taste; it does not belong to a lady at all, but to an
          ignorant, extravagant, or vain-minded person, who knows not true
          principle. I take the liberty of saying that these fashions are
          displeasing in the sight of truth, mercy and justice. It is
          displeasing to the Spirit of the Lord for persons to array
          themselves in any way whatever that is disgusting to the eye of
          the pure and the prudent. There is not a Latter-day Saint nor a
          Former-day Saint that ever did, or ever will expect to see any
          such customs or fashions when they get into heaven. If they were
          to see an angel, they would see a being beautifully but modestly
          dressed, white, comely and nice to look upon.
          I would like to advise the Latter-day Saints to avoid these
          foolish customs and habits. Let them pass by and not follow them;
          they do not belong to us. I would like to repeat to the ladies
          what we have said hundreds and thousands of times--they should
          make their own head-dresses and fashions, independent of all the
          rest of the inhabitants of the earth. Pay no attention to what
          others do, it is no matter what they do, or how they dress.
          Latter-day Saints should dress in that plain, neat, comely manner
          that will be pleasing and prudent, in every sense of the word,
          before the Lord, and try and please him that we serve the Being
          that we acknowledge as our God. Not flaunting, flirting and
          gossiping, as a great many are, and thinking continually of their
          dresses, and of this, that and the other that will minister to
          and gratify their vanity. Such women seldom think of their
          I am extending my remarks much longer than I intended. But how is
          it about the Word of Wisdom? Do we observe it? We should do, and
          preserve ourselves in all things holy before the Lord. How is it
          about keeping the Sabbath day? We have some articles that we
          would like to read here, but the people have them to read at
          their leisure. We should observe the Ten Commandments, for
          instance, that were given to Moses. If we do that, we shall be a
          pretty good people. But there is nothing in those commandments
          about building factories and raising wool, for the children of
          Israel, at the time they were given, were in a condition that
          they did not need factories, they did not need to raise wool. If
          they had goats and sheep with them, they made mutton, and tanned
          the skins probably, but I do no know what they did with them. It
          appears that their clothing did now wax old, and they probably
          had no need to spin or weave. But we have need to, we have got to
          make our own clothing, or to get it some other way--buy it or
          else go without it; and we ought to keep the Word of Wisdom, and
          keep the Sabbath day holy, and preserve ourselves in the
          integrity of our hearts before God.
          I want to ask if the people pay their tithing? Bishops, do the
          people of your wards pay their tithing? I will answer the
          question for you and say, No, they do not. Some people in modern
          times shudder at the word tithing--it is a term they are not used
          to. They are used to sustaining Priests, to donating for building
          meeting houses, and administering to those who wait at the table
          of the Lord, or that do their preaching and praying for them. And
          this is done by subscription donation, and passing the plate, hat
          or basket, but the word "tithing" is frightful to them. I like
          the term, because it is scriptural, and I would rather use it
          than any other. The Lord instituted tithing, it was practiced in
          the days of Abraham, and Enoch and Adam and his children did not
          forget their tithes and offerings. You can read for yourselves
          with regard to what the Lord requires. Now do the Latter-day
          Saints pay their tithing? They do not. I want to say this much to
          those who profess to be Latter-day Saints--if we neglect our
          tithes and offerings we will receive the chastening hand of the
          Lord. We may just as well count on this first as last. If we
          neglect to pay our tithes and offerings we will neglect other
          things, and this will grow upon us until the Spirit of the Gospel
          is entirely gone from us, and we are in the dark, and know not
          whither we are going.
          It is the duty of the Bishops to see that their wards pay
          tithing. But we have Bishops who are not reliable--men, for
          instance, who will take tithing grain when it brings a good price
          in cash, and when good beef is bringing cash they are so kind to
          their wards, and especially to their sons, that if a son has got
          a parcel of wild horses on the prairies that are not worth a
          yearling calf a head, they will say to him, "Drive up your wild
          horses, my boy, I will trade with you, and let you have neat
          stock, yearlings, or two years or three years old, or wheat that
          is in the tithing bin, I will take your horses. I will send down
          word to the General Tithing office, that there are so many horses
          here belonging to the tithing office." Such horses are a curse to
          us, or I can say they have been to me as an individual. I have
          raised stock enough to supply this whole Territory, if they had
          been taken care of. But they were like the Indian's boy. The
          missionary had been telling him that if he brought up a child in
          the way he should go, when he was old he would not depart from
          it. But the old chief has got it, just about as it is, and said
          he, "Yes, bring up a child, and away he goes;" and this is the
          way the horses go. And as far the neat stock, if any of it ever
          gets out of my sight that I do no know where it is, and can not
          send and get it, I always calculate that a thief will have it. I
          never trouble myself to look after it, there are too many men
          riding on the prairies with their blankets behind them, and their
          dinner in their blanket, and their lassoes with them to hunt up
          all the stock there is. This wild stock that is turned in on
          tithing is a curse to us. And where does the wheat go to? I am
          not disposed to, but I could tell names of Bishops who have taken
          our tithing wheat out of the bins and it has been sold by them or
          their families, And they have taken our stock that we wanted here
          for beef to feed the public lands, and traded it off for wild
          horses. This is a pretty hard saying, but it is true, and I could
          tell their names if I were obliged to.
          If the people will pay their tithing, we will go and do the work
          that is required of us. It is very true that the poor pay their
          tithing better than the rich do. If the rich would pay their
          tithing we should have plenty. The poor are faithful and prompt
          in paying their tithing, but the rich can hardly afford to pay
          theirs--they have too much. If a man is worth enough that he
          would have a thousand dollars to pay, it pinches him. If he has
          only ten dollars he can pay one; if he has only one dollar he can
          pay ten cents; it does not hurt him at all. If he has a hundred
          dollars he can possibly pay ten. If he has a thousand dollars he
          looks over it a little and says, "I guess I will pay it; it ought
          to be paid any how;" and he manages to pay his ten dollars or his
          hundred dollars. But suppose a man is wealthy enough to pay ten
          thousand, he looks that over a good many times, and says, "I
          guess I will wait until I get a little more, and then I will pay
          a good deal." And they wait and wait, like an old gentleman in
          the east; he waited and waited and waited to pay his tithing
          until he went down, I guess, to hell, I do not know exactly; but
          he went to hades, which we call hell. He went out of the world,
          and this is the way with a great many. They wait and continue
          waiting, until, finally, the character comes along who is called
          Death, and he slips up to them and takes away their breath, then
          they are gone and cannot pay their tithing, they are too late,
          and so it goes.
          Now this is finding fault with the rich, and I am going to find
          fault with the poor by and by. But if we will pay our tithing we
          will be blessed; if we refuse to do so the chastening hand of the
          Lord will be upon this people, just as sure as we are here. You
          may say I am threatening you Take it just as you please. I do not
          care. You may grease it and swallow it, or swallow it without
          greasing, just as you have a mind to. It is true, and we will
          find it so.
          Will the Latter-day Saints pay their tithing? Will they keep the
          Sabbath day holy? Will they deal justly with their neighbors? In
          my own feelings I excuse a great many naughty things that are
          done in our midst. I know that men and women brought up in
          different countries come here with their prejudices and with the
          instincts which they have had bred in and born with them, and
          which have grown up with them; and many of these traits of
          character are obnoxious to others brought up under other
          circumstances. These traditions cling to the people, and cause
          them to do many things which they would not do if they had been
          differently taught. Their morals have not been looked after in
          their youth and as prudently preserved as they should have been.
          Children should be taught honesty, and they should grow up with
          the feeling within them that they should never take a pin that is
          not their own; never displace anything, but always put everything
          in its place. If they find anything seek for the owner. If there
          is anything of their neighbor's going to waste, put it where it
          will not waste, and be perfectly honest one with another. Take
          the world of mankind and they are not overstocked with honesty. I
          have proved that. In my youth I have seen men, who were
          considered good, clever, honest men, who would take the advantage
          of their neighbors or workmen if they could. I have seen deacons,
          Baptists, Presbyterians, members of the Methodist church, with
          long, solid, sturdy faces and a poor brother would come along and
          say to one of them, "brother, such-a-one, I have come to see if I
          could get a bushel of wheat, rye or corn of you. I have no money,
          but I will come and work for you in harvest," and their faces
          would be drawn down so mournful, and they would say, "I have none
          to spare. "Well, deacon, if you can let me have one bushel, I
          understand you have considerable, I will come and work for you
          just as long as you say, until you are satisfied, in your harvest
          field, or haying or anything you want done." After much talk this
          longfaced character would get it out, "If you will come and work
          for me two days in harvest, I do not know but I will spare you a
          bushel of rye."
          When the harvest time comes the man could have got two bushels of
          rye for one day's work; but the deacon sticks him to his bargain,
          and makes him work two days for a bushel of wheat or rye. I used
          to think a good deal, but seldom spoke about any such thing, for
          I was brought up to treat everybody with that respect and
          courtesy that I could hardly allow myself to think aloud, and
          consequently very seldom did so. I thought enough of such
          religion, at any rate, that such Christians called me an infidel,
          because I could not swallow such things but I could not if they
          had been greased over with fresh butter. I did not read the Bible
          as they read it; and as for there being Bible Christians, I knew
          there were none; and if their religion was the religion they
          liked, said I, "Just go your own way, I want none of it." I
          wanted no religion that produced such morals.
          If we pay our tithing, and begin to live a little stricter than
          we have heretofore, in our faith, cease to break the Sabbath,
          cease to spend our time in idleness, cease to be dishonest and to
          meddle with that which is not our own, cease to deceive and to
          speak evil of one another, and learn the commandments of the
          Lord, and do them, we shall be blessed.
          Suppose we should say to a few of the Latter-day Saints, if we
          could find those who would answer the purpose, "how would you
          like to build up a stake of Zion, a little city of Enoch? How
          would you like this? Would you like to enter into a covenant, and
          into bonds, according to the law of our land, and let us bind
          ourselves together to go into a systematic co-operative system,
          not only in merchandizing, but in farming and in all mechanical
          work, and in every trade and business there is; and we will
          classify the business throughout, and we will gather together a
          few hundred families, and commence and keep the law of God, and
          preserve ourselves in purity. How would the Latter-day Saints
          like it? Do you think there could any be found who would be
          willing to do this?" Let me say to you, my brethren, I have a
          very fine place to start such a society as this that would
          probably sustain from five to ten thousand persons. I would like
          to make a deed of this property to such a society, and enter into
          a covenant with men of God and women of God that we would go to
          and show the world and show the Latter-day Saints how to build up
          a city of Zion, and how to increase intelligence among the
          people, how to walk circumspectly before our God and before one
          another, and classify every branch of labor, taking advantage of
          every improvement, and of all the learning in the world, and
          direct the labor of men and women, and see what it would produce;
          follow it out for ten years, and then look at the result. Our
          friends who visit us here say that we have done a good work, and
          we bear testimony that we have been greatly prospered. It is true
          that most of the people in this house came here like myself,
          comparatively naked and barefoot. I left all I had in the States.
          I say all--no. I had some wives and children whom I brought along
          with me. Some of them had shoes to their feet, some had not; some
          had bonnets, some had none. Some of my children had clothing, and
          some had very little; and we took up our line of march and left
          all. I believe for some four pretty nice brick houses, and a nice
          large farm, timber land and so on, I got one span of little
          horses and a carriage worth about a hundred dollars, the horses
          were worth about sixty dollars apiece, the harness about twenty.
          I think that was everything I got for my property. We came here
          and we have been prospered and blessed. If I had the privilege of
          living with a community that would do as I say for ten years, I
          would show them that our blessings now, in a temporal point of
          view, have been but as a drop to the bucketful. But would we bear
          this? Would our feelings submit to this? Would we not want to go
          and serve the devil if the Lord were to heap riches upon us? We
          see that what he does now makes men covetous, they can not even
          pay their tithing. Well, do we get all that we want? No, each man
          wants it all, and as long as this is the case with us, I think
          the saying common among the boys in my youth will be good--"Every
          man for himself, the devil for us all." Just as long as every man
          works for himself we are not the Lord's; we are not Christ's, we
          are not his disciples in this point of view, at any rate. If we
          had faith to be baptized, we do not carry out the principles of
          the salvation that he has wrought out for us. He is going to set
          up his kingdom--a literal, temporal kingdom. It will be a kingdom
          of priests by and by. If we had been willing to fully carry out
          the rules of the kingdom, followed counsel, and worked together,
          for twenty-five years past, the blessings we have received are
          not a drop in the bucket to what we would have received.
          Some twelve or fifteen years I labored faithfully with our
          merchants here, before I could get them to break through that
          everlasting covetous crust that was over them, and consent to
          operate together in merchandizing so as to give the people a
          chance with us. And it was the design and the feeling of men
          here, belonging to the Church, to aggrandize themselves and to
          monopolise to themselves the wealth of the community. And if
          another one sprang up and had good luck they would take him into
          the corps, into their fellowship, and he would belong to the
          order, and that was to make a few rich, and grind down and make
          every other man poor. That was the design, no question of it. But
          I determined with God and the good to help me that I would break
          that everlasting covetous crust and I succeeded at last. Are we
          making enough in our mercantile business here now? Yes, we are
          making all we should make. I suppose a great many would like to
          know how we are doing. It would be no harm for me to tell you
          perhaps that, the last six months, the Board of Directors of
          Zion's Co-operative Mercantile Institution are able to declare a
          dividend of ten per cent, with five per cent in reserve, which is
          added to the capital stock, and is as good as money. That is good
          enough for me, it yields some thirty per cent per annum.
          If we would work together in our farming, in our mechanism, be
          obedient and work as a family for the good of all, it would be
          almost impossible for anybody to guess the success we would have.
          But we have got to do it in the Lord. We must not do it with a
          covetous heart. Always be ready and willing that the Lord should
          have it all, and do what he pleases with it. I have asked a favor
          of the Lord in this thing, and that is not to place me in such
          circumstances that what he has given me shall go into the hands
          of our enemies. God forbid that! But let it go for the preaching
          of the Gospel, to sustain and to gather the poor, to build
          factories, make farms, and set the poor to work, as I have
          hundreds and thousands that had not anything to do. I have fed
          and clothed them and taken care of them until they have become
          comparatively independent. I have made no man poor, but thousands
          and thousands rich, that is, the Lord has, through your humble
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 / John
          Taylor, May 26, 1872
                              John Taylor, May 26, 1872
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER JOHN TAYLOR,
            Delivered in the Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, Sunday, May 26,
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                              OF THE WORK OF GOD, ETC.
          I am pleased to have the privilege of meeting with the Saints in
          this place, and of speaking to them such things as the Lord may
          place in my mind to communicate. I am well aware that I do not
          know how to speak, and that you do not know how to hear, unless
          we are all under the influence and guidance of the Spirit of the
          living God. We are spiritual beings, and literal and temporal
          beings; we have to do with time and eternity, and, as we can know
          nothing about eternity and nothing about God only as he shall
          reveal it unto us, it follows as a necessary consequence that all
          the theories, ideas and dogmas of men can be of no avail in
          instructing the human family in things pertaining to God and
          eternity. This holds good in regard to all of our affairs in
          life, whether it be the life that now is or the life that is to
          come. We know very little about the world we live in. We know
          very little about ourselves, about our own bodies, about the
          spirit and mind of man, or the operation of the Spirit of God
          upon that spirit and mind, and much less about eternity, about
          God and heaven, and about the designs and purposes of the
          Almighty; and it is folly for man, unaided and undirected by the
          Almighty, to attempt to teach things pertaining to the kingdom of
          God or to the welfare and happiness of the human family. We, as
          human beings, and especially as Latter-day Saints, who have given
          some attention to these matters, and feel ourselves identified
          with the Church and kingdom of God upon the earth, have ideas
          that differ very materially from those of the world, and that
          difference may be traced to the influence and operation of the
          Spirit of God upon our minds through obedience to the first
          principles of the Gospel of Christ; for, while the world of
          mankind generally have repudiated the order of God and the
          institutions of his house, we, as believers in him and in the
          establishment of his kingdom upon the earth in these latter days,
          occupy a very different position from that of the rest of the
          The Scriptures definitely inform us that no man knoweth the
          things of God but by the Spirit of God. The Gospel teaches us how
          we may obtain a knowledge of that Spirit, and that is, by
          repenting of our sins, being baptized in the name of Jesus for
          their remission, and having hands laid upon us for the reception
          of the Holy Ghost. And as we have complied with the first
          principles of the Gospel of Christ and partaken of the Holy
          Ghost, we have had some slight manifestations of the will,
          designs and purposes of the Almighty in relation to us, to those
          who have lived before us, and those who shall come after us; in
          relation to the worlds that are and that are to come. I say that
          we have had some slight idea of these things, and that it has
          originated from the peculiar position that we occupy through our
          obedience to the first principles of the Gospel of Christ. Other
          men do not--can not--comprehend things as we do; they have not
          the means of demonstrating the truth of the Gospel as we have,
          not having complied with its first principles. That which is
          light, intelligence, intelligent, happifying and glorious to us,
          is confusion and darkness to them. They can not conceive of it;
          they can not comprehend the laws of life, nor understand anything
          pertaining to the kingdom of God. I do not care what intelligence
          they may possess in regard to other matters; I do not care how
          profoundly learned they may be in the arts and sciences of the
          world; they may have studied mathematics, examined the physiology
          of the human system, and may have made themselves acquainted with
          geology, mineralogy, and the structure of the earth on which we
          live, and of the planetary system and the motion of worlds with
          which we are surrounded; they may have made themselves acquainted
          with history, geology, botany, law, physics, literature and
          theology, and all this knowledge, and much more than this, and if
          they are not in possession of the Holy Ghost, the principle of
          revelation, the light of eternal truth, they can not comprehend
          the kingdom of God.
          You have all read about Nicodemus coming to Jesus by night.
          Nicodemus thought there was something good about Jesus, but there
          was not enough manhood about himself. He was something of a
          sneak, the same as you sometimes see some men now. He wanted to
          come to Jesus, but he had not manhood to do so by daylight, so he
          came by night--under cover of darkness, and said he, "Rabbi, we
          know that thou art a teacher come from God, for no man can do
          these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him. Jesus
          answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee,
          Except a man be born again, he can not see the kingdom of God."
          Nicodemus did not understand this, and he said unto Jesus, "How
          can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter the second time
          into his mother's womb and be born? Jesus answered, Verily,
          verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the
          Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God." He could not
          even see the kingdom of God unless he was born of water, and he
          could not enter into it unless he was born of water and of the
          Spirit. This was the statement of Jesus, and it may account for
          the singular feeling we see manifested among the children of men
          towards us as a people. Men of ability and learning will come
          into our midst and say, "You have a remarkably fine country here,
          and you have exhibited a large amount of intelligence, industry
          and perseverance. We do not know anything about your religion,
          nor about its principles. We were inclined to think unfavorably
          of it from the many reports we heard abroad concerning you; but
          now that we see your order, diligence, perseverance,
          improvements, your beautiful cities and villages, your railroads
          and the various enterprises you have engaged in; when we see your
          freedom from the vices which generally prevail in the world, we
          think there is something peculiar about it, but what it is we do
          not know." They can not see the kingdom of God--they have not
          been born of water, that is the trouble with them. I frequently
          talk with ministers of various denominations on these subjects,
          but they are as blind as bats--they do not know anything about
          them. They can talk about politics and history, and they can
          discourse philosophically on various branches of art and science,
          but when you come to the kingdom of God they are egregiously
          ignorant, and they fulfill the words of Jesus, that no man can
          see that kingdom unless he is born again.
          Take a retrospective view of the history of this people. See
          their position and the position of the Church and kingdom of God,
          years ago and now, and then look at the things to come; talk of
          the kingdom as it was, as it is, and as it will be. There is
          something great, magnificent, and glorious to reflect
          upon--something which every Latter-day Saint, who has his mind
          lit up with the Spirit, intelligence and revelation which flow
          from God, admires; and he feels to say in his heart, as one said
          in former days: Let this people be my people, let their God be my
          God; where they live let me live also, and where they die let me
          be buried; and let me be their associate and mingle with them in
          time and in eternity. This is the kind of feeling that the Spirit
          of God imparts to every Latter-day Saint who lives his religion
          and keeps the commandments of God.
          We are engaged in a work that God has set his hand to accomplish,
          and he has made use of us as instruments, and he will also use
          others who shall yet be gathered, to build up his kingdom, and to
          introduce correct principles of every kind--principles of
          morality social principles, good political principles; principles
          relative to the government of the earth we live in; principles of
          salvation pertaining to ourselves and our progenitors and to our
          posterity, and pertaining to the world that was, that is and that
          is to come; and as I said, he is using us as instruments. it is
          true that we blunder and stumble; it is true that we are
          surrounded with all the weaknesses and infirmities of human
          nature, but with all our weaknesses and foibles clinging to us
          the Lord has called us from the nations of the earth to be his
          co-adjutors and co-laborers, his fellow-workmen and assistants,
          in rolling forth his purposes and bringing to pass those things
          that he designed before the world was. It is true that the Lord
          made man perfect, but man has found out many inventions, and he
          is very much degenerated, and is all the time prone to weakness,
          corruption, folly and vanity, and God knows it, and he knew it
          when he selected us. But what could he do? He could not select
          angels to associate with him in regenerating the earth and its
          inhabitants, for they were not very proper associates. He had to
          select just such beings as there were, and in the first place he
          revealed himself from the heavens to Joseph Smith. He made known
          to him some of the first principles of the Gospel of Christ, and
          then unfolded unto him certain things pertaining to the
          organization of the Church of God upon the earth, the Church in
          its organization, with Presidents, Apostles, High Priests,
          Seventies, Bishops and their councils, high councils, for their
          instruction and guidance, and with teachers, priests and deacons,
          and so forth. He organized his Church here upon the earth, and
          revealed unto these various quorums their several duties, and
          placed upon them certain responsibilities, told them what they
          were, and revealed unto Joseph Smith all things pertaining to the
          first organization of his kingdom upon the earth. He told his
          disciples, as Jesus told his, to go forth without purse or scrip,
          to preach the Gospel to every nation and kindred and people and
          tongue--to call upon them to repent of their sins, to be baptized
          in the name of Jesus for the remission of their sins, to have
          hands laid upon them for the reception of the Holy Ghost; to lay
          hands upon the sick and to cast out devils, just as Jesus told
          his disciples to do; and said he: "Freely you have received
          freely give." "Go without purse or scrip, trust in me, I am your
          father, I am the God and father of all the spirits of all flesh.
          I have you under my special control, I will stand by, I will
          sustain you, my spirit shall go with you, mine angels shall go
          before you to prepare the way for you." This is what he told
          Joseph Smith, and the Elders went forth, according to the word
          that God had given them, and they told you and told others to
          repent of your sins and be baptized in the name of Jesus for the
          remission of them. And what then? You should receive the gift of
          the Holy Ghost, which should take of the things of God and show
          them unto you; it should unveil the heavens to one, give the
          spirit of prophecy to another, the gift of interpretation to
          another, the gift of healing to another, and so forth, the Spirit
          dividing to each man severally as he saw fit.
          These Elders went forth and preached to you Latter-day Saints now
          before me, this very Gospel I have been laying before you, and
          there was something in your spirit ready to receive it. You could
          not tell why or wherefore, but you believed it to be a message
          sent from God, and you went forth into the waters of baptism and
          were baptized, and you received the gift of the Holy Ghost, and
          you then knew for yourselves of the truth of that doctrine which
          God had committed unto them; and you, in turn, were ordained, and
          you also went forth to preach the same Gospel, with the same
          results, for you saw the power of God manifested, You saw the
          sick healed, and the power of God attend your ministrations. You
          saw the same leap for joy, those who were downcast, inspired and
          led to rejoice through the principles of eternal life, and thus
          the Lord has perpetuated the same thing until the present day.
          Mixed up with that have been other things. We have been gathered
          here. What for? What did we come here for? Who knows? We came
          here because God said he would build up his Zion in the latter
          Under the teachings of Joseph Smith and President Young, the
          Elders of the Church have preached the gathering, and this is a
          gathering dispensation. But there is something else to be done
          besides simply being introduced into the spiritual ordinances of
          the Church of God: there is a kingdom to be established. We have
          gathered from the east and the west, from the north and the
          south, for a spirit rested upon the people to gather together,
          and no man could prevent them. All of you know how this feeling
          operated upon you, just as much as when it operated upon you by
          baptism--when you had the Spirit of God upon you could not resist
          it. I remember a circumstance that transpired in Liverpool some
          thirty years ago. We were told at that time by Joseph Smith not
          to preach the gathering, for we had been driven from Missouri,
          and as there was no particular specific place, he thought it was
          not well to say anything about gathering until a place should be
          prepared, then we should have instructions and could teach it.
          That was all well enough, but we could not keep it from the
          people. Why? they had received the Holy Ghost, and that took of
          the things of God and showed them to the people, and you could
          not hide the gathering from them. I remember a sister coming to
          me on one occasion and saying, "brother Taylor, I had a curious
          kind of a dream the other night." "What was it?" "Well," said
          she, "I dreamed there was a whole lot of Saints standing at the
          pier head down below here, in Liverpool; and there was a vessel
          there and it was going off to America, and we were going to some
          place they called Zion. I was going, you were going, and the
          Saints were all going. I thought I would ask you the meaning of
          it." I told her I would tell her one of these times. We could not
          keep it away from the people. If we had been told not to baptize
          and lay hands on them we could have kept it from them, but when
          they had been baptized and had hands laid upon them they received
          the Holy Ghost, and that Spirit showed the things of God to them
          and we could not hide them from them, hence from the time the
          people in the nations began to obey the Gospel to the present
          there has been a feeling in their hearts to gather up to Zion.
          The Saints abroad have desired to come here, and the Saints here
          have desired that they should come, and this is why we have sent
          as many as five hundred teams in a year to fetch our brethren
          from the Missouri river who were unable to come without
          assistance. What have we done this for? Well, some people may say
          it is a grand emigration scheme; but we say it is a scheme of the
          Lord to build up his kingdom and to gather the people together,
          according to the saying of the old prophets--"I will take one of
          a city and two of a family and bring them to Zion." "What will
          you do with them?" "I will give them pastors after my own heart,
          who shall feed them with knowledge and understanding," that is
          what I will do with them when I get them to Zion.
          Well, we have gathered from the nations year after year, until
          to-day we find ourselves a large people, actually occupying a
          Territory some five hundred miles in length. What is the result
          of this? Why we have got to have a political organization--we
          cannot avoid it. The Church has gathered us together, the Spirit
          of God has operated on our minds, and we are here an integral
          part of the United States of America, and we cannot help
          ourselves. If we wished to do so we could not annihilate
          ourselves or blot ourselves out of existence, and we do not want
          to if we could. But the necessities of the case have forced us
          into the very position that we now occupy--namely, a Territory in
          the United States of America; and as we are here, we like other
          people, have to eat, drink, wear clothing, build houses, make
          farms, and so on. God has ordained all these things before, and
          we, as part of his creatures, have to do our part towards
          beautifying his footstool.
          Finding ourselves in this capacity, we must have our courts. It
          is true that, formerly, our individual matters were regulated by
          our High Councils, Bishops' Councils, teachers, and so forth: but
          in some of the revelations it says, "Let him that steals be
          delivered up to the laws of the land." Well, here we are, and we
          occupy a political position, and we cannot help it, and nobody
          else can help it. You who live here, form a city, and you must
          have city regulations. You want police to guard you from the
          inroads of wicked men, either among ourselves or outsiders, no
          mater who, to protect the peaceable, industrious, honest and
          virtuous, and you must have some kind of government to do it. In
          a church capacity, whether here or abroad, we could cut the thief
          or drunkard form the Church if we had a mind to, but here, if we
          cut a man from the Church, we can not cut him from the State, he
          is still a citizen of the United States, and in the United
          States. In other places they make laws to punish theft,
          licentiousness and other crimes. It is true they do not carry
          them out; they do not care to do it, but they have such laws, and
          a variety of others to regulate property matters, and so forth.
          And we are compelled to enact such laws for safeguards around the
          whole community, for among other things we are beginning to
          possess property. We have farms, and they are in the United
          States, and we have to apply for patents for them, just as they
          do anywhere else, and we have to inform to the processes of law
          in all these matters, the same as any other people have. We have
          also to plow the ground, and to fence it, and to have our
          neighborhood, city and county regulations in Utah among the
          Saints, just as the people do elsewhere, for, as I have already
          said, we are part of the body politic of the United States.
          It has been thought good to apply for a State government for us.
          Here is Brother George A. Smith going down for that purpose. Why
          so? Why do you do that? Is not that of the world? Yes, and we are
          of the world and in the world, and we can not get out of it until
          we are called out of it by old age or some accidental death. We
          are here and we have got to act, and we live, move and have our
          being, like other people. We are not here to interfere with the
          rights of any body. People may want to rob us, but we do not want
          to rob anybody. We want to protect ourselves in every legal and
          equitable way from the aggressions of those who would seek our
          overthrow, and the overthrow of the kingdom of God on the earth.
          Well, finding ourselves thus organized, what have we to do? Why,
          we have our bodies and our spirits, we are temporal beings, we
          are immortal beings; we have to do with time and with eternity.
          We had very little to do with coming here, we came by some manner
          of means, we hardly know how, and we have to leave when the time
          comes, and we can not help ourselves. then the only thing we
          ought to do is to act as wise, intelligent beings before God. The
          world have no idea of God, and they do not acknowledge him. He
          may develop, through one person, the principle of electricity,
          but the world will say it is some wise man that did it. He may,
          through another, develop the power of steam, but they say, Some
          wise man did it. Through another, God may make known the
          light-giving power of gas, to another the tapping of the earth to
          bring forth oils for illuminating purposes; but the world say,
          "Some wise man has done this." Men do not like to acknowledge
          God; it is just as the Scriptures say: they will not acknowledge
          him in all their thoughts. They want to get rid of him, and they
          give the glory to men for doing this, that and the other. Fools
          that they are! What do they know about these principles? Who
          organized the principles which they found out? Did man? Did he
          organize the principle of electricity or give it its vitality and
          power? Did any of our savans? No, they could not. Who placed the
          principle of power in steam? Did man? No, he could not do it.
          They want to throw off God where they can, while we want to bring
          him in and have him one of our crowd; that is the difference
          between us and them. They find out something which God has made,
          just as the little child when it discovers its fingers for the
          first time. It had them long before, but when they first
          attracted its attention it seemed to fancy it had made a great
          discovery. God organized the child and placed its spirit within
          its body, and it at last found out that it had a hand. And the
          scientific babies of the world just discover some of the
          properties of matter, some of nature's laws created by God long
          before, and like Nebuchadnezzar they cry, in the pride of their
          hearts, "Is not this great Babylon which I have built? Yes it is,
          and it is as much of a Babylon or Babel as the other was.
          Well, God has commenced to do a work, and he began, in the first
          place, with the very first principles of the Gospel, and he has
          led us on gradually, until we find ourselves in our present
          position, and we have got a beautiful land here, haven't we? And
          yet they call our leader a murderer, and those who are his
          co-laborers the most infamous blackhearted scoundrels that ever
          existed. Are these the works of murderers that you see around
          here? Excuse me for referring to these things, but I do it to
          contrast between one thing and another. We always knew they were
          liars, and do to-day.
          What are we after? What are the world after? Say they, "Is not
          this great Babylon that we have built?" They tell us what
          magnificent stripes and stars, and what glorious freedom we have
          got here in this land of liberty; and in our Fourth of July
          orations we talk about the great blessings that we enjoy, and how
          we have got bigger flags, higher mountains, taller trees and
          deeper rivers than anybody else, and we are the most magnificent
          people in existence. All over the land this is the kind of talk
          and feeling that prevails, and men boast of their wisdom,
          intelligence and prowess. But they are in the hands of God--this
          nation and all others are in his hand, and he will deal with them
          just as he sees proper. By and by he will cause the nations to
          tremble to their foundations. Empires will be overthrown,
          kingdoms destroyed, and the powers that be will fade away like
          "the baseless fabric of a vision;" and he will exalt and ennoble
          those who put their trust in him, and work the works of
          righteousness. We are here to do a work; not a small one, but a
          large one. We are here to help the Lord to build up his kingdom,
          and if we have any knowledge of electricity, we thank God for it.
          If we have any knowledge of the power of steam, we will say it
          came from God. If we possess any other scientific information
          about the earth whereon we stand, or of the elements with which
          we are surrounded, we will thank God for the information, and say
          he has inspired men from time to time to understand them, and we
          will go on and grasp more intelligence, light and information,
          until we comprehend as we are comprehended of God. This is what
          we are after. We are here to introduce correct principles upon
          the earth on which we live; but we cannot do it any more than any
          of these men can understand the laws of nature, unless God
          reveals them to us. The world is all confusion, and men need the
          illuminating influence of the Spirit of God.
          We talk sometimes about our political status, and think that we
          have been dreadfully oppressed and crowded here. Why, there are
          millions and millions worse off in the United States than we are
          to-day. We need not grunt much. Besides, we expect that the
          wicked will grow worse, deceiving and being deceived. You Elders
          of Israel, have you not prophecied about it? And if you have, are
          you surprised that men begin to expose themselves, and to
          manifest the works of the devil in every form--religiously,
          socially and politically, trampling under foot every principle of
          honor and integrity? Are you surprised at it? I am not, I expect
          it, and I expect it to grow worse and worse. But don't you think
          we have got over all our difficulties. Not quite; not by a long
          way. I expect things will grow worse and worse. As we increase in
          power, the power of Satan and his emissaries will increase also.
          I expect that all the time; but in the future God will put the
          opposers of his cause and people to shame, as he has done the
          wretches now in our midst. I expect that he will stand by Israel,
          maintain his kingdom, uphold his people, and lead them on from
          victory to victory, from strength to strength, from power to
          power, form intelligence to intelligence, until "the kingdoms of
          this world shall become the kingdoms of our God and his Christ,
          and he shall feign forever and ever," until a universal hosannah
          shall go up from the nations of the earth, and "blessing, and
          glory, and honor, and power, and might, majesty and dominion
          shall be ascribed to him who sits on the throne and unto the Lamb
          We are associated with these principles to-day. God is our God
          and our Father. We approach him and we say: "We thank thee, O
          God, our Father, for the mercies thou hast vouchsafed to thy
          people. We humble ourselves before thee, because thou art our
          Father, and thy mercy endures forever." This is the kind of
          feeling we have when we feel right.
          Well, we are here, and God is going to build up his kingdom. He
          will do it, and we need not trouble ourselves about outsiders and
          their notions, or about foolish men or their thoughts, practices
          and calculations. It is a matter of very little difference to us.
          God is at the helm--he manages, he guides, he directs and
          controls, he influences his people, and he will continue to
          influence them. Well, we are here, in the capacity, say, of a
          kingdom, and people tell us that we are different from anybody
          else. Of course we are; we do not expect to be like others. It is
          true that smoke goes out of our chimneys, as out of the chimneys
          of others, because it is a law of nature. It is true that
          potatoes, wheat and corn grow here as elsewhere. It is true we
          have to attend to the common affairs of life--eat, drink, sustain
          ourselves, clothe and keep ourselves warm, as others do, and we
          have to take care of and protect ourselves from the incursions
          and machinations of those who seek to destroy us. In all these
          respects we have to take the same course that other people do;
          but the difference between us is--we have an organization, a
          Church organization, given by revelation from God, and which does
          not exist anywhere else in this little world.
          But what about other things relative to temporal affairs? If God
          can organize us as a Church, if he can unveil the heavens to us,
          draw aside the curtain of futurity, and enable us to penetrate
          the veil and gain a certain knowledge in regard to the future,
          certainly he can make known or reveal something about a few
          temporal things, such as plowing, sowing, building, planting,
          trading, manufacturing, making railroads, and a thousand other
          little things that have to be attended to in this world. If he
          can do the bigger things, I think he can do the less.
          "Well, we are capable of doing that ourselves," say some people,
          some of these philosophers I have referred to--they are all wise
          men, and you would think wisdom would die with them, but it will
          not be entirely extinguished when they are gone, not quite. God
          will still lead, govern and direct his people. "But," say they,
          "We think we could do things so much better than somebody else.
          Well then, go at it and try; there is plenty of room in the world
          for you to exhibit your intelligence.
          We are in the hands of God. We have come here. What for? The Lord
          says, "I will take them one of a city and two of a family, and
          bring them to Zion." What will you do with them? "Give them
          pastors after my own heart, who shall feed them with knowledge
          and understanding." It is a fact, to-day, that the wise men and
          great men, and statesmen, and men in position in various parts of
          the world, as they come here to visit us with all our failings
          and infirmities, tell us that we are the best and most orderly
          people they have ever seen. And they say we have a beautiful
          country, and that we are governed by wisdom, by sage counsels,
          and by a high order of intelligence. That is the opinion of the
          leading statesmen of this day who pass through our midst, and
          many of them come through here. The question naturally arises,
          Where does this wisdom come from? Why, God inspired Joseph Smith;
          then he inspired President Young with the same kind of spirit and
          feeling. Then he inspired the devil, or the devil inspired his
          imps--one of the two--and drove us from our former possessions,
          and it all worked together, the Lord inspired on the one hand,
          and the devil on the other, and by hook or by crook, we got here,
          just as we are to-day.
          We commenced to build a temple in Kirtland, and we built it. We
          built another in Nauvoo, and we are building another here. We are
          attending to the ordinances pertaining to the Church of God,
          temporal and spiritual, ordinances pertaining to the body, and
          ordinances pertaining to the spirit. And then, as men having to
          do with the world on which we live, with the Territory that we
          possess, we have to enact laws, and we have to conduct ourselves
          properly, and seek the assistance of the Almighty to direct us in
          all our affairs, and the Lord has promised if we would do that,
          he would show us that the wisdom of God is greater than the
          cunning of the devil. Well, he does keep showing that from time
          to time, and if we do right he will keep on doing it. But to
          ensure this there is something devolving upon us.
          Says one, "If I could have so much money, such a farm, or this,
          that, and the other, I would feel satisfied." I say, get the
          Spirit of God in your hearts! Let the light of revelation burn in
          your bosoms like living fire, then you will know something about
          God, something about the blessings of salvation, something about
          the benefits that will accrue to Zion. "But, sometimes, I have to
          make a little sacrifice if I carry out the counsel given." Well,
          make it then, If it is a sacrifice, it ought to be a pleasure to
          help build up the kingdom of God, establish righteousness, plant
          the standard of truth, and to be on the side of God, angels and
          eternal realities, to be saviors of men. To be thus situated is
          the most honorable position in this world or the world to come.
          Now, God could not get the world to do anything towards building
          up his kingdom, they would not do it, they could not see it, and
          he had to get you baptized before you could see it; and seeing it
          now, will you barter it away for the follies of this world, for
          the smiles and promises of the ungodly? Or are you going to
          cleave to the truth, live by it, and, if necessary, die by it?
          What are you going to do?
          I am glad we have come here. I am pleased that these meetings
          have been instituted, that the people get together, and that we
          have a chance to talk with them, in their assemblies, about the
          things of God. We are God's people, God is our Father, and we
          should spend a little time in these things. This is our duty, and
          we should feel and interest in them. That is what we set out for,
          and we mean to go forward, and we will go on and on, for our
          motto is eternal progress. This kingdom will advance, the
          purposes of God will roll forward, and no power on this side of
          hell, or the other either, can stop it. God will sustain his
          people, and Israel will rejoice and be triumphant.
          Now then, we come to the management of our affairs. Talking of
          the wise men of the world, why we have had many of them ever
          since the world was. And what have they accomplished in the
          nations of the earth? They have built cities, and some have
          raised themselves to fame by trampling under foot thousands of
          others. They have waded through seas of blood sometimes to get
          upon the throne of power. What to do? That they might trample
          still lower poor humanity, and bring men down, as it were, to the
          dust of death, and make serfs of them. What else have they done?
          They have established every kind of government, as they have
          every kind of religion. Do you not think that we need revelation
          about government as much as anything else? I think we do. I think
          we need God to dictate to us as much in our national and social
          affairs as in church matters. Some people are willing to have
          their souls looked after, but they think they are smart enough to
          look after temporal affairs themselves. In the world they want a
          doctor to look after their bodies, a parson to look after their
          souls, and a lawyer to take care of their property. In these
          respects we differ from them. We begin with God. Our light comes
          from him, our religion is from him, and we need his guidance and
          instruction in all these other matters. Is not that simple, plain
          and reasonable? They are in confusion in the world about their
          religion, because there is no God in it. That is what's the
          matter. The Scriptures say, "There is one Lord, one faith, one
          baptism, one God, who is in all and through you all." They have a
          religion without God, and they are going to heaven without God,
          and when they get there they will find no God, and they will
          still have a chance to have their own way inasmuch as the Lord
          will let them.
          Well, as I said, we begin first with God, religiously,
          spiritually if you please--teaching first, the first principles
          of the Gospel. Then we go on to other matters--to temporal
          matters. A Bishop, you know, in the world, is a kind of being who
          has nothing to do but to attend to spiritual matters, and he does
          very little of that. Our Bishops have to take care of the poor,
          and see that they are provided for, that is, see they have
          something to eat, and they have also to attend to many secular
          affairs that are naturally connected with common humanity. Well,
          what then? We build churches and temples, and we administer in
          those temples, according to the revelations which God has given
          to us. And they would like to know something about that, but they
          can not, for that belongs to the Saints only. Then, what next? We
          find ourselves, as I said before, in a governmental capacity, and
          perform our duties as good citizens and attend to all the duties
          and responsibilities thereof. But then it is no trouble for us to
          keep the laws of the land. What difficulty is there for other
          people? Can they live then? I am sure we can. No law of any land
          will interfere with or molest the man who does not cheat or
          defraud his neighbor, but pursues and honorable, honest, upright
          course. Laws are made for the unruly and turbulent, for
          lawbreakers and for men who violate right. Then there are many
          other things besides these in which we differ from the world, in
          their social, political and religious affairs. I will refer to
          one--their method of treating the acknowledged head of the
          Government, the President of the United States. At one time it
          was "Hurrah for General Grant," he was almost a demi-god. What do
          they say now? If you can believe the papers, he is one of the
          biggest rascals that was ever unhung. I do not know whether they
          told the truth before or now, but they do talk these things, and
          who would stand by him if he were thrown out? Very few. Here is
          President Young, whom his enemies have been calling a murderer;
          did anybody forsake him? No, oh no! Did any of your knees
          tremble? Perhaps a little, not much; but still you had faith in
          him, and you would as soon see him to-day as any other man on
          God's footstool, wouldn't you? (Congregation answered "Yes.")
          There is the difference. There is a principle implanted in the
          hearts of men, that no man can tear therefrom; the Spirit of God
          plants it there, and there it dwells and will remain, and it can
          not be rooted out. It is true you act foolishly about here,
          sometimes. I know you do, because we do among us yonder, and you
          are just as we are, and you act very foolishly sometimes; but
          when we let the Spirit of God operate upon our minds, it is
          "Hurrah for Brigham Young," "Hurrah for the Twelve," "Hurrah for
          the kingdom of God!" That is the feeling, isn't it? Well, now let
          us carry it out, and live it, and do what is right and God will
          bless us. Don't be particular about having your own way, for it
          is not always the right way, and that which seems pleasing in our
          eyes is not always right, and that which looks the most
          profitable is not always right. It is the most profitable and
          right for the Saints of God to keep the commandments and be
          governed by the counsels of God; and if you are governed by that
          he will lead you on from light to light, from strength to
          strength, from intelligence to intelligence until you will be
          exalted among the Gods, there to rejoice for ever and ever. We
          have commenced the race and we will go on and win it; we have
          commenced a battle, and we shall triumph, for the kingdom of God
          will go on, and no power can stop it.
          May God help us to be faithful in the name of Jesus, Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 / Orson
          Pratt, September 22, 1872
                           Orson Pratt, September 22, 1872
                            DISCOURSE BY ELDER ORSON PRATT,
                  Delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                        Sunday Afternoon, September 22, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          Having been requested to address the congregation this afternoon,
          I do so with the greatest cheerfulness. There is one passage of
          Scripture I would like very much to take as a text, if I knew
          where to find it. It is somewhere in the book of Jeremiah or
          Ezekiel. I have not time now to look it up, and perhaps it would
          be better to take some other text having a bearing on the same
          subject. The text to which I would like to direct the attention
          of the people has reference to the colonization of this country
          by one of the descendants of Zedekiah, king of Judah. It reads
          something like this: "thus saith the Lord God, I will also take
          of the highest branch of the high cedar, and will set it; I will
          crop off from the top of his young twigs a tender one, and will
          plant it upon an high mountain and eminent: in the mountain of
          the height of Israel, will I plant it: and it shall bring forth
          boughs, and bear fruit, and be a goodly cedar; and under it shall
          dwell all fowl of every wing; in the shadow of the branches
          thereof shall they dwell."
          We read of the fulfillment of this prophecy in the Book of
          Mormon; but because I cannot direct your attention to the
          passage, I will read another text, which will be found in the
          11th verse of the 85th Psalm: "Truth shall spring out of the
          earth, and righteousness shall look down from heaven."
          Forty-five years ago this morning this prophecy, so far as it
          relates to "truth springing out of the earth," was fulfilled.
          Forty-five years ago, early this morning, plates resembling gold
          were taken from the earth, the morning, if I recollect right, of
          the 22nd of September, 1827. Owing to that great event the
          Territory of Utah is now settled by the people called Latter-day
          Saints. Owing to the fulfillment of this prophecy this Tabernacle
          has been built here in these mountains; and had it not been for
          that event, it is probable that Utah Territory would still have
          been a desert, a barren, solitary, uninhabited district of
          country. Sometimes great things are accomplished and grow out of
          things that appear very small in their nature. It has been so in
          relation to this prophecy--"Truth shall spring out of the earth."
          In order that the meaning of these words may be more fully
          understood, it may not be amiss to read the context or the
          passages preceding. The Psalmist commences:--
          Lord, thou hast been favorable unto thy land: thou hast brought
          back the captivity of Jacob.
          Thou hast forgiven the iniquity of thy people: thou hast covered
          all their sin. Selah.
          Thou hast taken away all thy wrath: thou hast turned thyself from
          the fierceness of thine anger.
          Turn us, O God of our salvation, and cause thine anger toward us
          to cease.
                 Wilt thou be angry with us for ever? wilt thou draw out
          thine anger to all generations?
          Wilt thou not revive us again, that thy people may rejoice in
          Shew us thy mercy, O Lord, and grant us thy salvation.
          I will hear what God the Lord will speak: for he will speak peace
          unto his people, and to his saints; but let them not turn again
          to folly.
          Surely his salvation is nigh them that fear him; that glory may
          dwell in our land.
          Mercy and truth are met together; righteousness and peace have
          kissed each other.
          Truth shall spring out of the earth; and righteousness shall look
          down from heaven.
          Yea, the Lord shall give that which is good; and our land shall
          yield her increase.
          Righteousness shall go before him, and shall set us in the way of
          his steps.
          Thus reads the 85th Psalm. It is very evident that the Psalmist
          David, being filled with the spirit of prophecy, saw the
          condition of the people of Israel, saw also that they would be
          under the displeasure of the Almighty for many generations, and
          he prays that the Lord would look upon them in compassion, and
          turn himself from the fierceness of his anger, that it might not
          be drawn out towards them to all generations, and he utters this
          prayer: "Turn us, O God of our salvation, and show unto us thy
          mercy," etc. The Lord, in answer to this prayer, promised to
          speak peace to his people, but said he. "Let them not turn again
          unto folly." And then he informs them how he would speak peace
          unto them, and how he would turn himself from the fierceness of
          his anger, that his anger might not be drawn out unto them to all
          generations. He informs them that he would commence this great
          work, that should result in peace and salvation to Israel, by
          causing truth to spring out of the earth, at which time
          righteousness should look down from heaven. Righteousness and
          truth and peace should kiss one another, and the Lord should
          cause the land of Israel again to yield its increase. We know how
          barren, sterile and uninhabitable is the land that was once
          promised to that chosen people. The Lord has not only cursed the
          people and made them a hiss and a byword among all the nations
          whither they have been driven, but his anger has also been upon
          their land. He has withheld the rains of heaven, and has cursed
          it with barrenness and sterility; and the cities which once
          covered its face and reared their lofty spires to heaven, now lie
          in ruins, and scarcely a vestige of some of them can be found.
          But when the Lord should cause truth to spring forth out of the
          earth, he would speak peace to his people and to their land, and
          it should yield its increase; and truth should go before him and
          should set them in the way of his steps.
          We have been proclaiming for forty-two years this Book of Mormon,
          which we have declared has sprung forth from the earth by the
          power of the Almighty, for the benefit, first of the Gentile
          nations. The proclamation, according to the words of the book,
          must go forth to all people, nations and tongues under the whole
          heavens, called the Gentile nations, after which the Lord has
          promised in numerous places in this record that it should go to
          the remnants of the house of Israel. But that which the Lord
          intends to accomplish first by the bringing forth of this book,
          is the redemption of as many as will hearken to its words in all
          the Gentile nations of the earth, and to gather them together in
          one; for not only are the house of Israel and the house of Judah
          to be gathered back to their own lands, but all Christians
          throughout the whole earth are to be gathered in one in the
          latter days, according to a prophecy which you will find in the
          43rd chapter of Isaiah: "I will bring them from the east, and
          gather them from the west. I will say to the north, Give up; and
          to the south, Keep not back: bring my sons from far, and my
          daughters from the ends of the earth; even every one that is
          called by my name." This has reference to the sons and daughters
          of the living God, to the people called Saints; not particularly
          to the literal seed of the house of Israel, but to all those who
          believe in him, and who are called by his name. All must be
          gathered; all must come from the ends of the earth. No Christians
          will be left, scattered abroad over the nations, as many suppose
          will be the case so long as time lasts. A complete and full
          gathering together of the people of God must take place in the
          latter days, called, by Paul, the dispensation of the fullness of
          times. You will find this prediction in the first chapter of his
          epistle to the Ephesians. Paul there declares that a new
          dispensation must come in, and he denominates it the dispensation
          of the fullness of times. He tells us that in that dispensation
          the Lord will gather together in one all things in Christ. Every
          person that believes in, and has put on Christ by baptism and by
          repentance of sin, must be gathered in one in that dispensation;
          not only those on earth, but those in heaven--all the
          congregations who are in Christ, who have dwelt on the earth in
          former ages, are to be united with those who are in the flesh on
          the earth. One great, vast, general assembly of all that are in
          Christ--the dead as well as the living--from the days of Adam
          down until the work is completed.
          In order to commence this great work the Lord has brought forth
          truth out of the earth. He will speak peace to his people, and
          they are requested by the Psalmist, when the Lord undertakes to
          do this work, never to turn again unto folly.
          Now I will attempt to give a brief account to my hearers of how
          Joseph Smith obtained the plates of the Book of Mormon from the
          earth. He was but a lad, a farmer's boy, when the Lord began to
          speak to him and send his angels to him, being not quite fifteen
          years of age. He was almost too young to be a brazen-faced
          impostor, was he not? Cast your eyes around on this congregation
          for the youth of fifteen, and see if you think it would be
          possible for one of that early age to become one of the most
          barefaced impostors that the world ever heard of, for Joseph
          Smith was thus regarded by the world at large with few
          exceptions; and he must have been so, at a very early age, if
          this work be not true, for he could not be deceived, himself, in
          relation to it. There was no possible chance for any deception,
          so far as he himself was concerned. Why? Because the
          circumstances were of such a nature that he could not be
          deceived. God revealed to him that there were certain plates
          deposited about three miles from his father's house. He saw, in
          vision, the place of their deposit. He heard the holy angel
          declare to him in relation to these records. But first, about
          four years prior to this, the first vision that he had was in
          answer to prayer. Being but a youth, and anxious for the
          salvation of his soul, he secretly prayed, in the wilderness,
          that the Lord would show unto him what he should do, what church
          he should join. The Lord heard and answered this prayer. Do not
          be astonished, good Christians, because the Lord hears prayer in
          the 19th century. I know it is very popular to pray to the Lord
          in Christendom; but when you talk about the Lord answering
          prayers, by giving revelations, visions, or sending angels, it is
          very unpopular. But unpopular as it was, this youth ventured to
          go and ask the Lord for wisdom, having, in the first place, read
          a passage in the New testament, which says, "If any man lack
          wisdom let him ask of God, who giveth to all liberally and
          upbraideth not, and it shall be given unto him." Joseph Smith was
          not so full of tradition that he could not lay hold of this
          promise. I do not know that he had been taught long enough, the
          idea that the Lord would not hear prayer. At any rate, having
          read this passage, he prayed, really believing in his heart that
          the Lord would answer him, for he wanted wisdom, he wanted to
          know which was the true Christian Church, that he might be united
          with it; and while pleading with and praying to the Lord for this
          information, which was a matter of great concern to him, the
          heavens were opened, and two personages clothed in light or fire
          descended and stood before him. As soon as this light surrounded
          him, and he was enclosed or enveloped in it, his mind was caught
          away from earthly objects and things, and he saw these two
          glorious personages, their countenances shining with exceeding
          great brilliancy. One of them, while pointing to the other,
          addressed him in this language, "Behold my beloved son, hear ye
          him." All fear was taken from this boy during the progress of
          this wonderful event, and he felt happy, but anxious to know
          concerning the things about which he had been praying, and he
          repeated his request, that he might be told which was the true
          Christian church. He was informed that there was no true
          Christian church on the earth, that there was no people
          established or organized according to the Apostolic order; that
          all had gone out of the way and had departed from the ancient
          order of things; that they had denied the power of Godliness, the
          gifts, miracles, the spirit of revelation and prophecy, visions,
          that all these things had been done away with by the unbelief of
          the children of men, and that there were no prophets or inspired
          men on the earth, as there always had been when there was a true
          Church upon the earth. He was strictly commanded to join none of
          them. The Lord also informed him that, at some future period of
          time, if he would be faithful in giving heed to the instructions
          which were then imparted to him, and in his prayers to the Lord,
          he would impart to him his own doctrine in plainness and
          Some four years passed away from this time, making this boy not
          quite nineteen years of age, and on one Sunday evening he
          returned to his bed-room, pondering upon the promise that had
          been given to him, and he began praying earnestly again that the
          Lord would show him the true Gospel of his son, according to the
          promise; and while he was thus praying in his father's house in
          his chamber, a light burst into the room, becoming brighter by
          degrees, shining and then partially withdrawing, so that fear did
          not take possession of his bosom to any great degree. As he
          continued praying the light became brighter and brighter, and
          finally a personage clothed in a white robe stood before him.
          This personage was a little above the size of common men at the
          present day, and his arms and feet were partially bare. His feet
          did not stand on the floor of the room, but a certain distance
          above, and his countenance shone like lightning. This Angel
          appeared so pleasant, beautiful and glorious, and his countenance
          radiated such happiness on the mind of this young lad that all
          fear was taken from him as on the former occasion. This personage
          told him that he was an Angel of God, and that he had been sent,
          in answer to his prayer, with a very important message to deliver
          to him; that God designed to accomplish a great work on the
          earth, and that he was to be a chosen instrument in laying the
          foundation of, and establishing this work. He commenced telling
          him about the ancient inhabitants of this continent. He told him
          that the present American Indians were the descendants of Israel;
          that their forefathers were brought here from Jerusalem about six
          centuries before Christ; that when they came they were a
          righteous people and had Prophets among them; that when they
          landed on this continent they commenced, by the commandment of
          the Lord, keeping a record of their history, their prophecies and
          sacred doings upon metallic plates; that that nation, after
          having dwelt here about a thousand years, fell into great
          wickedness; that they divided themselves into two great nations;
          that the portion that had these plates, the Nephites, had so far
          apostatized from the Lord, that he threatened their overthrown,
          and to destroy them if they did not repent; that the Prophets
          went forth among them prophesying that if they did not repent,
          the other nation, called Lamanites, would destroy them from the
          face of the land. But they would not repent, and Mormon, a
          Prophet who lived at that time, was commanded of the Lord to take
          all the plates that were kept of the records of his fathers, and
          make an abridgment of them upon a new set of plates. So he
          commenced and abridged their history, from the time they left
          Jerusalem until that period, incorporating therein many of the
          prophesies and revelations given during that thousand years.
          After having made this abridgment he committed it into the hands
          of his son Moroni, knowing that his nation would be destroyed,
          and that Moroni, according to the revelations God had given him,
          would be spared to keep the records, and to behold the downfall
          of his nation Mormon hid the records from which he made this
          abridgment in a hill, called the hill Cumorah, that being its
          ancient name, and this hill was about three miles from where this
          young man resided, in the town of Manchester, Ontario County,
          State of New York. There all the records were deposited, and
          according to the Book of Mormon they must have been very numerous
          indeed. The history of the ancient inhabitants of this land was
          kept by their kings, and the records became very voluminous; and
          they were all deposited by the Prophet Mormon in that hill; but
          the abridgment from which the Book of Mormon was taken was given
          into the hands of his son Moroni, to finish out the record. The
          last date given on these records was 420 years after Christ.
          You may inquire how the people on this land know about the birth
          of Christ. I will say that they understood Christianity on this
          western hemisphere as well as on the eastern hemisphere. They
          were not left in darkness here concerning the Savior of the world
          and his atonement. They knew all about it. How? Jesus, who is the
          God of the whole earth, appeared to them after his crucifixion,
          and resurrection from the dead. He showed them the wounds in his
          hands, feet and side, and delivered to them his Gospel in its
          plainness and fullness, and they were commanded to write it on
          plates. They knew also, of his birth, in the land of their
          forefathers, by the signs which God gave to them on this land.
          They were told that at the time of the birth of Jesus there
          should be two days and one night without any darkness at all;
          they should see the sun go down at night and rise in the morning,
          and that during the whole of that time it should be light as day.
          They commenced the reckoning of their time from that period.
          Previous to that time they had reckoned their time from the date
          of their leaving Jerusalem, precisely six hundred years before
          the birth of Christ. Four hundred and twenty years after that
          great event the Prophet Moroni informs us that he also was
          commanded to hide up this abridgment in the same hill, but in
          another part of it, in which his father Mormon hid up the sacred
          records. And the Lord made a promise to Moroni, also to Mormon,
          and to many other Prophets who dwelt on this land in previous
          generations, that these plates should never be destroyed, but
          that they should be preserved by his hand, and that they should
          be brought forth-out of the earth in the latter days, for the
          purpose of bringing about the gathering of his people from the
          ends of the earth, and the bringing in of the fullness of the
          Gentiles and fulfilling their times, after which the translation
          of these records should go to all the remnants of the house of
          Israel, scattered abroad on the face of the whole earth; and that
          these records should be instrumental in the hands of God in
          gathering Israel from the four quarters of the earth.
          These were the promises of God to the ancient Prophets of this
          continent, and the angel told Joseph Smith concerning these
          plates, and where they were deposited. At the same time, the
          vision of the Almighty was open to the mind of Joseph, and he saw
          the very spot. After the angel had conversed with him sometime on
          this subject, and had opened up to him the prophecies of the holy
          Prophets concerning the great work that was to be accomplished in
          the latter days, he withdrew, and Joseph continued praying. Some,
          perhaps, might think that this was a dream; but it was not, he
          was wide awake. As he continued praying, the angel came again the
          second time, and gave him still further information concerning
          the rise of the latter-day kingdom of God upon the earth, and the
          great work the Almighty intended to accomplish preparatory to the
          coming of his Son from the heavens with all his Saints. The angel
          then again withdrew, but in answer to Joseph's prayers he came
          the third time, and imparted to him still more information. After
          his withdrawal the third time Joseph arose, and it was early in
          the morning, he having been awake all night receiving instruction
          from the angel of God. In the morning he went out into the field
          to work with his father. He had not yet told his father of the
          remarkable things that he had seen during the night; but this
          father noticed that he looked weak and feeble, and advised him to
          go to the house. He started to do so, and while on the way, the
          angel again appeared to him, and commanded him to return to his
          father and tell him all about it. He did so, and his father, on
          hearing it, burst into tears, and said, "My son, be not
          disobedient to this heavenly vision!" The angel, when he appeared
          to him in daylight, told him not only to tell his father, but
          also to go to the place shown him in vision the night precious,
          and see the plates. His father told him by all means to be
          obedient and faithful. He went according to the instruction of
          the angel and visited this hill. The hill runs north and south
          some three quarters of a mile, and on one end of it, or near the
          end of it, was where he saw the plates. The surface of the stone
          which covered the plates was bare; around its edges was a thick
          greensward of grass or turf. He knew the place as soon as he saw
          it, and procuring a lever he lifted off this principal or
          crowning stone, and found that it was cemented on the top of four
          stones that sat on edge, forming a stone box. After having lifted
          off the stone he saw the plates, just as he had seen them in
          vision the night before. These plates rested upon three little
          cement pillars that ran up from the bottom, and the stones that
          formed the sides of the box were cemented together at the
          With the plates was an instrument, called the Urim and Thummim,
          used by seers in ancient times, and which enabled them to
          understand the things of God. The great High Priest used such an
          instrument in the midst of Israel on the other continent, and
          inquired of the Lord to receive sentence of judgment in difficult
          cases that were brought before him to be judged. Aaron had a Urim
          and Thummim in the centre of his breastplate; and when the cases
          were brought before him, the breastplate of judgment, containing
          the Urim and Thummim, was consulted, and whatever sentence the
          Lord gave, Aaron gave to the people of Israel. The Prophets who
          deposited these plates in the hill Cumorah were commanded of the
          Lord to deposit the Urim and Thummim with them, so that when the
          time came for them to be brought forth, the individual who was
          entrusted with them might be able to translate them by the gift
          and power of God. Joseph put forth his hands to take the plates,
          but upon doing so the angel immediately appeared to him and said,
          "Joseph, the time has not yet come for you to take the plates;
          you must be taught and instructed, and you must give heed to my
          commandments and to the commandments of the Lord until you are
          fully prepared to be entrusted with them, for the Lord promised
          his ancient servants on this land that no one should have them
          for the purpose of speculation, and that they should be brought
          forth with an eye single to the glory of God; and now, if you
          will keep the commandments of God in all things and prepare
          yourself, you will in due time be permitted to take these plates
          from their place of deposit." He would not suffer him to take
          them at that time. Four years from that day--on the morning of
          the 22nd of September, 1827--having been commanded of the Lord to
          come to that place at that special time, he went and was met by
          the angel. I will state, however, that during these four years he
          was often ministered to by the angels of God, and received
          instruction concerning the work that was to be performed in the
          later days. But when the time had fully arrived he went to the
          hill Cumorah, according to appointment, and took the plates, and
          the Urim and Thummim with them, and took them to his father's
          house in a wagon, which he had brought near to the hill for that
          purpose. He was then nearly twenty-two years old--twenty-two the
          following December.
          Soon after this a certain portion of the characters on these
          plates were copied off by the Prophet, and the manuscript sent,
          by the hands of Martin Harris, a farmer who lived in that
          neighborhood, to the city of New York, to show them to the
          learned, to see if they could translate them. Among those to whom
          they were presented was Professor Anthon--a man noted for his
          learning in languages--but he could not translate them.
          You may here inquire, What was the particular character in which
          these plates were written? They inform us that they wrote in two
          separate characters. Some of their plates were written in hebrew
          and some in the Egyptian; but both the Hebrew and the Egyptian,
          after they came from Jerusalem, were reformed by them. I mean the
          alphabets were altered or changed. If they had not done this by
          design, we know that in the course of a thousand years languages
          will greatly change, and sometimes new characters will be added
          to alphabets. We know that none of them, at the present time, are
          precisely as they were anciently; they have been added to from
          time to time. The Hebrew, on the eastern continent, had the
          points representing the vowels added to it after the Nephites
          left Jerusalem; and no doubt the Egyptian, understood when they
          left, has been greatly changed since. They wrote, therefore, in
          the reformed Egyptian--a language that the learned Professor
          Anthon did not understand. He requested Martin Harris, however,
          to bring the plates to him, telling him, if he would, that he
          could perhaps assist him in the translation. Joseph translated
          the few characters that were sent to Professor Anthon, and when
          the translation and the original were shown to him and he had
          compared them, he expressed the opinion that the translation was
          correct, and he gave a paper to that effect to Martin Harris. As
          Mr. Harris was leaving the room, Mr. Anthon said, "How did this
          young lad obtain the plates?" Said Martin Harris, "He obtained
          them by the ministration of an holy angel." Professor Anthon
          immediately requested him to return the paper that he had given
          him, and as soon as Mr. Harris had done so, he tore it to pieces,
          saying, "Angels do not appear in our day."
          I do not know that Joseph Smith, at the time that he sent these
          words to the learned, knew anything about the prophecy that is
          contained in the 29th chapter of Isaiah, a few words of which I
          will read; but at any rate, whether he knew it or not, it was a
          literal fulfillment of it. Isaiah speaks of a time when deep
          sleep should be poured out upon the nations of the earth, and
          they should be drunken, but not with wine; they should stagger,
          but not with strong drink; and the Prophets and the Seers, &c.,
          should be covered; in other words, they would not have any
          Prophets or Seers. Every one will bear me witness that that was
          the case at the time these plates were brought forth. Where was
          there a people who received revelation? Where were their Prophets
          and Seers? Gone, covered, "and the vision of all has become to
          you as the words of a book that is sealed, which men deliver to
          one that is learned, saying, 'Read this I pray you;' and he
          saith, 'I can not, for the book is sealed' And the book is
          delivered to him that is not learned, saying, 'Read this I pray
          thee,' and he saith, 'I am not learned.' Wherefore the Lord says,
          'Inasmuch as this people'--the people to whom these words should
          be delivered--'draw near to me with their mouths and with their
          lips do honor me, but remove their hearts far from me, and their
          fear towards me is taught by the precepts of men, therefore I
          will proceed to do a marvelous work among this people, even a
          marvelous work and a wonder. For the wisdom of their wise men
          shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be
          This prophecy was fulfilled in the transaction I have already
          related. The words of the book, Isaiah says, are to be delivered
          to the learned, not the book itself. I have had people rise up
          and say, "Why did not Joseph Smith send the plates to the
          learned?" Because that would have been a violation of this
          prophecy. The words of the book, not the book itself, were to be
          delivered to the learned, requesting him to read them--"Read this
          I pray thee." But he says, "I can not, for it is sealed." Martin
          Harris told him a portion of these plates were sealed and were
          not to be translated during the present generation; but the
          portion that were unsealed were to be translated. He replied, "I
          can not read a sealed book," thus fulfilling the words of Isaiah.
          The book itself, we are informed in the next verse, is to be
          delivered to him that is not learned. Now in regard to Joseph
          Smith's qualifications or attainments in learning, they were very
          ordinary. He had received a little education in the common
          country schools in the vicinity in which he had lived. He could
          read a little, and could write, but it was in such an ordinary
          hand that he did not venture to at as his own scribe, but had to
          employ sometimes one and sometimes another to write as he
          translated. This unlearned man did not make the same reply that
          the learned man did. For when the book was delivered to this
          unlearned youth and he was requested to read it, he replied, "I
          am not learned." I suppose he felt his weakness when the Lord
          told him to read this book; for he thought it was a great work.
          But the Lord replied to Joseph in the very language of this
          prophecy--"Inasmuch as this people"--meaning the present
          generation--"draw near to me with their lips, &c, therefore I
          will proceed to do a marvelous work, even a marvelous work and a
          Now, did the unlearned man read the book? Some might suppose, if
          they were to read no further, that the book was not read at all.
          Let us read what is prophesied in the 18th verse: "And in that
          day shall the deaf hear the words of the book." Indeed! Then it
          seems that the book must have been read, or they could not have
          heard its words. "And the eyes of the blind shall see out of
          obscurity and out of darkness." Does this mean those who are
          spiritually deaf, and those who are spiritually blind? Or does it
          mean literally, those who are blind and can not see, and those
          who are deaf and can not hear? It may mean either way, for it is
          well known by thousands and tens of thousands now on the earth
          that the eyes of the blind--those who have been born blind--have
          been opened, and that the ears of the deaf have been opened by
          the power of God, through the preaching of this book, so that the
          prophecy has had a literal fulfillment, for those who were
          physically and spiritually blind and deaf have been made to see
          and hear by the power of God, and they have gathered themselves
          from the nations.
          Now let us read a little further in this prophecy, and see
          whether this corresponds with the words of our text. You
          recollect it refers particularly to the ingathering of the house
          of Israel, and when the Lord would cause the land of Palestine to
          yield its increase, that he would cause truth to spring out of
          the earth," and so on. Does this prophecy of Isaiah correspond
          with David; so far as the events predicted to transpire in the
          days when the book comes forth? We will see. "Therefore thus
          saith the Lord, who redeemed Abraham, concerning the house of
          Jacob; Jacob shall not now be ashamed, neither shall his face now
          wax pale." Why should they no longer be ashamed? Why should not
          their faces still wax pale? The reply is, "But when he seeth his
          children, the work of my hands in the midst of him, they shall
          sanctify the Holy One of Jacob, and fear the God of Israel."
          Do you not see how these two Prophets harmonize in their
          prophecies? One says, "Wilt thou not turn to us again, O Lord,
          and bring back again the captivity of thy people, Jacob, that we
          may rejoice in thee? How long, O Lord, will the fierceness of thy
          wrath continue? Will it continue to all generations?" And the
          answer is that he will bring truth out of the earth, that it
          should set them in the way of his steps; and the land of Israel
          or Jacob should again yield its increase. While the other says
          Jacob shall not be ashamed, neither shall his face wax pale. It
          seems then, that both these Prophets beheld that truth out of the
          earth, or a certain book, would bring about the gathering of that
          long-dispersed people.
          We find also, other events described, of a very remarkable
          character. One is that the meek should increase their joy in the
          Lord. There have been a great many meek people among all the
          religious denominations, who have no doubt lived, with all the
          desire of faithfulness that we Latter-day Saints have, and some
          perhaps have been more faithful than some of us. "The meek, also,
          shall increase their joy in the Lord." When will they do this? In
          the day that the deaf should hear the worlds of the book. For
          what reason? Because of the instructions, counsel perfect
          doctrine, and prophecies contained therein; because of the
          knowledge it gives to the children of men concerning the great
          work which is to be accomplished before the coming of the Son of
          Man. All this knowledge would cause the meek of the earth to have
          their joy increased.
          "The poor among men shall rejoice in the Holy One of Israel."
          This is a very important item. When we wander over the nations of
          the earth, at the present day, what do we behold? Millions on
          millions groaning in worse than African slavery. Our American
          slavery here, never compared with the slavery of those millions
          in the old countries. They were very pointed there, against what
          they termed African slavery, but they did not look at the slaves
          at home--the millions of people who were obliged to work fourteen
          or sixteen hours a day for a sixpence, their bones sticking out
          of their skin, as it were, and they having the appearance as if
          famine had been gnawing at their vitals. This is the condition of
          millions now. But here is a book, the coming forth of which
          should make the poor among men rejoice in the Holy One of Israel.
          I would call upon this congregation, and upon the inhabitants of
          Utah Territory, I mean that portion called Latter-day Saints, and
          ask of them, Have you experienced the fulfillment of this
          prophecy, in the deliverance of yourselves and children from the
          oppression that you endured in the mother country? If a response
          were given to this it would be a united affirmative from scores
          of thousands that this prophecy has been fulfilled to the very
          letter in their deliverance form the bondage which they and their
          fathers before them had been compelled to endure by the cruel
          hand of the oppressor.
          Another event is spoken of in connection with the bringing forth
          of this book--"For the terrible one is brought to naught, the
          scorner is consumed, and all that watch for iniquity are cut
          off." Has that ever been fulfilled? No, but it will be in its
          time and in its season; but not until they have heard the words
          of the book, and have been thoroughly warned by the coming forth
          of truth out of the earth. When that has been sounded in their
          ears, if they hardened their hearts against it the decree of the
          Almighty is that all that watch for iniquity shall be cut off.
          All who persecute the Saints of the living God, all who would
          make a man an offender for a word, that will lay a snare for him
          that reproveth in the gate, that will turn aside the just for a
          thing of naught, are to be consumed.
          Another very pleasing thing is mentioned, which you can bear me
          witness has been fulfilled. "They also who erred in spirit shall
          come to understanding, and they that murmured shall learn
          doctrine." Oh, how my heart has been pained within me when I have
          seen the blindness of the Christian world, and I knew that many
          of them were sincere! I knew they desired to know the truth, but
          they scarcely knew whether to turn to the right or to the left,
          so great were the errors that were taught in their midst, and so
          strong the traditions which they had imbibed, the fear of the
          Lord being taught them by the precepts of men instead of by
          inspiration and the power of the Holy Ghost. "They also that
          erred in spirit shall come to understanding" when this book comes
          forth, and "They that murmur shall learn doctrine."
          I would seem, then, that there is something connected with
          doctrine in the contents of this book, or the people could not
          learn doctrine therefrom and have their errors done away. But
          those who have read this book will bear me record that their
          minds have been forever set at rest in regard to doctrine, so far
          as the ordinances of the kingdom of God are concerned. Those who
          erred, and did not know whether sprinkling, pouring or immersion
          was the true method of baptism, now know? Why? Because the Book
          of Mormon reveals the mode as it was given to the ancient
          Nephites on this continent. So in regard to every other principle
          of the doctrine of Christ--it is set forth in such great
          plainness that it is impossible for any two persons to form
          different ideas in relation to it, after reading the Book of
           You may ask, Why this plainness? Because it was translated by
          the power and gift of God; because it came from a proper
          source--from him who is truth itself. God has brought it forth
          from the earth, and as the Psalmist David says, "it will set us
          in the way of his steps." if we have murmured because we did not
          understand doctrine, we now have a revelation that will show us
          the true Gospel, with all its ordinances, principles, gifts and
          blessings, and we may enjoy them inasmuch as we will seek them
          according to the promises of the Almighty.
          I know that I am sometimes lengthy in my teachings, and may be
          tedious to some, but bear with me a few moments longer, for there
          are some other prophecies connected with the coming forth of this
          book that it seems to me should be understood by the people. I
          will refer you to one now, which will be found in the 37th
          chapter of the prophecies of Ezekiel. We there have a declaration
          of the means that God will use to gather the house of Israel from
          the four quarters of the earth I have not time to turn to it, but
          I will repeat it. Speaking to the Prophet, the Lord
          says--'Therefore, son of man, take one stick and write upon it
          for Joseph, the stick of Ephraim; and then take another stick and
          write upon it for Judah, and join these two sticks together in
          thine hand, and hold them up before the Children of Israel in
          thine hands." Now here were two sticks. I have no doubt that they
          were literal sticks in Ezekiel's hands. The question is what did
          they mean? Two sticks written upon, one for Judah, and the other
          for Joseph, the stick of Ephraim. And after they were written
          upon, Ezekiel was to take the two sticks and join them into one,
          and then hold them up before the children of Israel as one stick.
          Then the Lord proceeds, "And when the children of thy people
          shall speak unto thee, saying, What doest thou mean by this?"
          Now, notice the interpretation--"What dost thou mean by these two
          sticks that are written upon for Judah and for Joseph? "Say unto
          them, Thus saith the Lord God, behold I will take the stick of
          Joseph, written upon for Joseph, and I will put it with the stick
          of Judah, written upon for Judah, and they shall be one in mine
          hand." The two sticks in Ezekiel's hands were a representation of
          what the Lord was going to do, when he would do it and what
          events should follow the joining of these two sticks together. In
          reading the next verse we see how it harmonizes with what David
          and Isaiah have said on the subject. 'The sticks whereon thou
          writest shall be in thine hand before their eyes; and say unto
          them, Thus saith the Lord God, Behold I will take the children of
          Israel from among the heathen whither they be gone. I will gather
          them on every side, and bring them into their own land upon the
          mountains of Israel. They shall no more be two nations, neither
          shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at all. But they
          shall dwell in the land which I have given to Jacob my servant,
          wherein your fathers have dwelt, and they shall dwell therein,
          even they and their children and their children's children for
          ever, saith the Lord."
          Has that been fulfilled? No. When will the work commence that
          will bring it about? When the Lord takes the stick of Joseph,
          written upon for Joseph, and puts it with the Jewish record,
          written upon for Judah, and makes them one in his own hand, and
          not until then. You might raise millions of dollars, and form
          missionary societies for the amelioration of the condition of the
          Jews; you might form Christian societies and raise funds until
          they are ever so great, and go to the nations of the earth and
          try to convert Israel, but you can not do it. Why? Because God
          Almighty has decreed that that work shall be brought about after
          the union of the two records, and not till then. When he brings
          forth the record of the tribe of Joseph--his sacred writing and
          puts it with the record of the jews--the Bible then and not till
          then may we look for the restitution of the house of Israel; and
          not even then, until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled.
          Now let me say a few words about the times of the Gentiles. You
          know that Jesus predicted, in the 21st chapter of Luke, that
          Jerusalem should be trodden down by the Gentiles until the times
          of the Gentiles should be fulfilled, and from the day of the
          dispersion of the Jews, seventy years after Christ, until the
          present year--1872--that land has been trodden down by the
          Gentiles, and the house of Israel have not enjoyed their former
          location, their beautiful city nor their land of promise, and
          they can not enjoy it--God will not permit them until the times
          of the Gentiles are fulfilled.
          The question is, How will he bring about the fulfillment of the
          times of the Gentiles? I answered, by sending forth to them the
          stick of Joseph, written upon for Joseph, in connection with the
          Bible, by his servants who go forth to the nations of the earth.
          They will proclaim to all people, nations and tongues, to the
          Gentiles first, the fullness of the Gospel of the Son of God,
          contained in these two records. The testimony of two nations
          running together and growing into one is stronger than the
          testimony of one nation; and when the Lord makes the ancient
          continent of America bear record to the same great truths; when
          he unites the Bible of the Western hemisphere, with the Bible of
          the East, and sends it forth to the nations of the earth, it will
          be a witness, and evidence and a testimony sufficient to bring
          about what is termed the fullness of the Gentiles, or to fulfill
          their times.
          This is the reason why, during forty-two years, God has
          restricted us to the Gentile nations, and would not suffer us to
          go with the Book of Mormon to the house of Israel until the times
          of the Gentiles were fulfilled. How much longer the Lord will
          bear with the Gentile nations I know not; but I do know that when
          they count themselves unworthy of eternal life, when the servants
          of God have thoroughly warned them by preaching to them the
          fullness of the Gospel of his Son, then the commandment will go
          forth from the Almighty to his servants--'turn from the Gentile
          nations and go to the dispersed of Israel. Go, ye fishers and ye
          hunters, and fulfill that which I spake by the mouth of mine
          ancient Prophets, that Jacob may no longer be made ashamed, that
          his face may no longer wax pale. Go and say to the house of
          Israel in the four quarters of the earth that the God of Jacob
          has again spoken. Go and tell them that that which he spake by
          the mouths their ancient Prophets is being fulfilled." And they
          will go, and their proclamation will be to Israel the same as to
          the Gentiles, with the exception of gathering the Jews to old
          Jerusalem, instead of to the land of Zion.
          I might quote many other passages that have a bearing on this
          subject, but let this suffice. The work is before the nations,
          and they can examine it. It has received its foundation and
          start, and there is no power beneath the heavens that can stay
          the hand of the Almighty. His work will roll forth, whatever the
          conduct of the unfaithful may be. The work of the Almighty is
          onward, and will progress in its majesty and power until every
          prophecy is fulfilled that has been spoken by the mouth of his
          ancient servants. It will come to pass, and the people will be
          gathered, for the powers of the earth can not stay the hand of
          the Almighty. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 /
          Brigham Young, October 8, 1872
                           Brigham Young, October 8, 1872
                       DISCOURSE BY ELDER BRIGHAM YOUNG, JUN.,
            Delivered at the 42nd Semi-Annual Conference, Salt Lake City,
                                  October 8, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          I believe it is pleasing, generally, for an Elder in this Church
          to have the privilege of bearing his testimony, though it may be
          done with fear and trembling, before the people; yet the
          knowledge which God has given to the Elders of Israel inspires
          them to declare it unto the world. Although I am considerably
          afflicted, as well as my brethren, with this manfearing spirit,
          yet it is a pleasure to me, and I hope it ever will be, to stand
          before the congregations, and tell them that I know, by the
          revelations of Jesus Christ, that this is the people of God. I
          may not be able to instruct the people to that extent which
          others might, but with the help of the Spirit of the Lord I can
          testify to that which I do know, which I have experienced in my
          life, and which has been brought home to my understanding. I
          think that it strengthens me in the principles of the everlasting
          Gospel every time I have the privilege of testifying to their
          It is almost impossible for this people to realize that they are
          called by the power and authority of the Almighty, and that they
          are the Saints of God, nevertheless it is true if we are living
          that religion which we profess to believe in. Let those who have
          not received a testimony to that effect go before their Maker,
          seek him in all diligence, be faithful to that which they know,
          and he will reveal it unto their minds. We have not come to this
          earth to idle away our time, or to throw away that precious gift
          which is within the reach of all whom God has created. Eternal
          life is extended unto us by a merciful Creator, and we have the
          opportunity of gaining an exaltation in the kingdom of God if we
          have a mind to improve it. We have come here without a knowledge
          of a former existence, we are like strangers in a strange land.
          The knowledge that we have acquired guides us to some extent,
          enables us to gain a living, and in part to understand the things
          of the kingdom of God. Brethren and sisters, we are here as
          strangers in a strange land, and a guide is what we want--a guide
          for our actions on the earth. God has given us one--he revealed a
          guide through Joseph Smith, the Prophet, and others who have
          lived in modern times, and they have revealed the will of the
          Almighty unto the people. We are not left destitute, so that we
          can be led away by every manner of doctrine; when we hear people
          say, "Lo! here is Christ, lo! there is Christ," we are not left
          to ourselves, neither have we to seek the advice of men to know
          whether these expressions are true or not, because the Spirit of
          the Almighty has testified unto us that the revelations contained
          in those books--the Book of Doctrine and Covenants and the Book
          of Mormon, which we received through Joseph Smith, are true, and
          they are given unto us for our guidance.
          Is it necessary to ask this people if they are acquainted with
          the revelations contained in these books, which have been given
          unto us as a guide to eternal life in the presence of God? Do we
          understand the revelations contained within the lids of these
          books? They contain blessings and truths inestimable, for they
          point the way back into the presence of our God. Do we study and
          understand them, or are our minds taken up with such light
          reading as naturally tends to distract the attention from the
          principles of the Gospel? There is too much fault-finding and
          confusion, and too much of the world in the midst of this people,
          and especially in the midst of the Latter-day Saints who dwell in
          Salt Lake City. It is true that temptations are broadcast in our
          midst, and we meet them on every hand. But is that any reason
          that we should give way to them? Is it any reason that we should
          adopt the follies and fashions of the world because they have
          been introduced into our midst? Well do I remember the time when,
          in this city, it was customary for the Saints to retire to rest
          without locking their doors. There was no necessity to lock
          granaries, or stables, or to guard property as we are compelled
          to do now. But times have changed, the temptations which the Lord
          said should overtake his people have come, and they have come for
          our salvation, for without them it would be impossible for us to
          show to God that we are for him and his kingdom and that, under
          any and all circumstances, we are determined to work
          righteousness upon the earth. I do not complain because these
          temptations have been introduced into our midst, for they are
          necessary. If the Lord sees fit to permit them, I have nothing to
          say only by way of counsel, and to exhort the Saints not to
          indulge in those things which would have a tendency to grieve the
          Spirit of the Lord. I am aware that these evils are not pleasant,
          and probably if we could understand and comprehend evil without
          coming in contact with it, God would never have placed us on this
          earth, so far from our home, so far from those with whom we dwelt
          in the eternal worlds. He never would have placed us here but for
          our own good.
          Here are the books--the Bible, Book of Mormon, and the Book of
          Doctrine and Covenants--which are given for a guide to the people
          of all the earth, if they will but listen to them; but they will
          not listen to the Book of Mormon and the Book of Doctrine and
          Covenants, and yet I have failed to discover a learned man who
          could take those books and tell where they differed in doctrine
          in the least. They can not do this, because the doctrines of all
          are the same, for they all proceed from God, and they contain his
          plan for the salvation of his children upon the earth. Shall we
          obey the revelations which have been given? If I could have an
          answer from each individual here to-day, professing to be a
          Saint, I have no doubt it would be "Yes." And if strangers, and
          the nations of the earth knew that we believe in them as firmly
          as we believe in anything on the earth, they would say, "If you
          believe in them, practice and obey them in every particular, and
          live according to your conscience and the law which God has given
          you." I, by the revelations of the Almighty, understand these
          books to be true. I know that Jesus is the Christ. Not because I
          have read it in the books which I have named, or because I have
          heard Joseph Smith or others testify to it, but I know it by the
          revelations of God, just as others have known it in former
          dispensations of the Gospel, and just as others know it in this
          dispensation. Saints should live their religion; they should obey
          the principles which have been revealed and which are contained
          in these books. But there is too much ignorance concerning these
          revelations; they are not sufficiently studied; or if studied
          they are not remembered, if I am to judge from what I see around
          me. In traveling and preaching among the people, there is one
          revelation which presses itself particularly on my mind, and
          which I think the people would obey if they considered that it
          came from the Almighty. But as they do not obey it, I suppose
          they do not consider that it came from God. I refer to a
          revelation given in the year 1833, called the Word of Wisdom. We
          fail to obey it to-day, and we shall fail to-morrow unless we
          make a short turn and determine in our own minds that we will
          obey it. How many of us have disregarded that revelation, in
          every particular? It is to be found on page 240 of the Doctrine
          and Covenants, and it shadows to me that a time will come in the
          midst of this people when a desolating scourge will pass through
          our ranks, and the destroying angel will be in our midst as he
          was in Egypt when he slew all the firstborn of the Egyptians. God
          says "The destroying angel shall pass by" and shall not harm you
          if you will observe to do these things. Now if we believe this
          revelation, and I take it for granted that we do, though I may
          choose to doubt in my own case and some others, yet I assume that
          as a people we believe it; but what assurance have we that that
          angel will pass us by unless we do observe it? No more than the
          children of Israel would have had if they had failed to mark
          their doors and lintels with the blood of a lamb, as Moses had
          commanded them. What effect would a failure to comply with this
          commandment have had on them? Would the Destroyer have passed by
          the firstborn of Israel? I trow not; I think the firstborn of
          Israel would have been slain as well as the first born of Egypt.
          That was a revelation given by the Lord to Moses for the
          salvation of Israel; the Word of Wisdom is a revelation given by
          the Lord to Joseph Smith for the salvation of this people, and if
          we disobey we have no more assurance than Israel had that the
          destroying angel will pass through our ranks and leave us
          unscathed. There is not a father or mother before me to-day who
          would like to see a child borne away to the graveyard because of
          their disobedience. Well, light is given, it has come to us, and
          it is for us to obey it, and to put into practice the
          commandments which God has given us. It is true that the word of
          Wisdom does not say anything about drinking tea and coffee, but
          our leaders--men inspired of the Almighty, in whom we have full
          confidence, have told us that it includes these things, and that
          should be sufficient for us. The Word of Wisdom says that in
          those times, through the wickedness which is in the hearts of
          men, they would seek to destroy this people, by introducing into
          their midst something deleterious to health. If these are not the
          exact words, they are tantamount. Now is it necessary for us to
          observe the Word of Wisdom with regard to tea and coffee? Just as
          much as with regard to tobacco and liquor, because it has been so
          defined to us, and I so understand it.
          When I think of these things, I think of what I have seen among
          the men who have been called particularly to labor on our
          railroads and in our co-operative institutions. What is the
          situation of some of the young men who labor in these
          institutions and upon our railroads? If they do not follow the
          examples set by those who travel and labor on other roads, then I
          do not understand it. I find that our young men are copying after
          the young men who travel on other roads--they smoke and they
          drink, with as much assurance as though they had followed it all
          their lives; and I doubt not, if they continue in the pursuit of
          such practices, they will become as proficient in other sins as
          some I have seen elsewhere. If young men wish to continue habits
          of this kind I have no objections, so far as I am concerned, but
          I do not wish them to invade my household. I do not wish my
          children to keep the company of men of this class. I do not wish
          my daughters to go into the society of men, even though they
          profess to belong to this Church, who will smoke, drink and
          swear, and who are ready to commit all the other sins contained
          in the catalogue if they had the opportunity, and were from under
          the eye of those who would condemn them. I know these things
          exist upon our railroads, and also in our co-operative
          institutions more or less, throughout this country. Now what
          course shall we pursue with regard to these things? Shall we
          foster them? If you see a young man in a co-operative store he
          dresses better and has a little more means and influence than
          other young men of his own age in the community. He exercises
          that influence for good or for evil over the minds of younger
          members of the community. My sons see such young men smoking and
          drinking, and they say "Why should not we?" And they will be
          likely to, until they arrive at years of discretion, and get
          sense to know better. Some may say, "Oh, they will turn round by
          and by, and do better." We have no business to hope that, when
          once these evil habits are acquired by our children, they will
          turn round and do better when they arrive at years of maturity;
          at least I have no right to hope it on behalf of my own children.
          I hope to prevent it in their youth, I could not hope to stop it
          after they had commenced and become confirmed in it, although in
          some cases I might succeed. But I wish to prevent it, for I
          believe that prevention is better than cure. 
          It is our business, brethren and sisters, to put our foot upon
          these practices, and to discountenance and condemn them whenever
          we see our youth practicing them. This people are not gathered
          here to practice the sins which are prevalent in Babylon, at
          least I do not so understand it. The Scriptures teach me, and the
          Spirit of the Lord bears testimony, to cry unto the people to
          come out of Babylon, and not to drag Babylon or its sins into our
          midst. They are not necessary for our happiness. It is
          astonishing to me when I look over the people in this and other
          countries, to see the immense number who use tobacco and liquor.
          I sometimes wonder how the world lived so long without tobacco
          before the discovery of America! Now nearly everybody smokes or
          chews. They did without it before America was discovered, and
          they could now if they were so disposed. This people could if
          they would, and yet they are importing perhaps more tobacco, tea,
          coffee and liquor than ever before during their existence as a
          Church. I believe this is the case, from all I can hear and lean
          on the subject. This is wrong. We can go into our settlements in
          the north, south, east and west, and it is just as necessary to
          have tea, coffee and tobacco now, as ever. I can also find that
          where there is an almost boundless range, and the people can have
          an unlimited number of stock, all their cheese is imported--they
          eat States cheese there as they do in the city. Home manufacture
          is neglected, and our cows are left to die on the range, and we
          are expending the very bone and sinew of this community to get
          means to import articles which we can raise in abundance here.
          This will ruin us as a community if it is practiced long enough.
          These things may not be quite so prevalent as my words may imply.
          I do not mean to say that all the people disregard the Word of
          Wisdom; but I fear that the great majority do. If the brethren
          who have been called to occupy responsible positions in the midst
          of the people fail to observe the Word of Wisdom, it will grieve
          the Spirit of the Lord, and if they do not turn and repent they
          will leave this Church. That is my faith--if they continue to use
          these things, and to impress the minds of the people with the
          idea that it is utterly unnecessary to observe the Word of
          Wisdom, they will lose the spirit of this work and will
          eventually turn from it. The presiding Elders of this Church are
          called to observe the word of wisdom, and in all things to set a
          good example before the people. That is their business, and that
          is their mission, and as long as they live they will never have a
          Brethren, let us seek to understand and practice these things,
          and also endeavor to instruct the minds of our wives and children
          with regard to the principles contained in these books. Endeavor,
          brethren, to build up Zion, and not Babylon. I think very often,
          when I am speaking to the people, of a remark to President Young.
          He has been in the Church a great many years. On one occasion,
          only a very few years after the Church was organized, the Prophet
          Joseph counseled him and others never to do another day's work to
          build up Babylon, and he has obeyed that counsel. I know he has
          for twenty-five years past, and I am satisfied he has from the
          time the counsel was given.
          Do we need to go away from home to build up Babylon? Do we need
          to leave this city to build up Babylon? No, continue to indulge
          our fancies for fashion and for the practice of those habits and
          customs which a corrupt civilization has introduced into our
          midst, and we are building up Babylon in the most approved style.
          That is my belief. Our outside friends have brought a great many
          good things here; they have improved our city, they are building
          fine buildings, and are expending their capital liberally. I do
          not object to this, but I do not want it to lead us from the path
          of truth and to bring us into bondage, to sin and iniquity. There
          is no necessity for this if we wisely use that which God has
          given us. You remember the time, brethren, after we had been in
          this valley a year or so, we were, in a manner, naked and
          barefooted, and were a thousand miles from any supply of
          clothing, and it was impossible for us to manufacture it, for
          there were no sheep in the country, nothing to manufacture cloth
          with, and no means to obtain it. You remember the prophecy
          delivered here upon this block by the late Heber C. Kimball, that
          within a certain time--a very brief period--clothing would be as
          cheap in Salt Lake City as in New York. What prospect had we at
          that time that his prophecy would be fulfilled, for a journey to
          the States and back again then required months to perform, and
          there was seemingly no chance of a supply of clothing from
          outside importation? Yet within the time specified, the prophecy
          was literally fulfilled, and clothing was far cheaper in the
          streets of this city than in the streets of New York. This is
          only one among the many prophecies which have been delivered and
          fulfilled. Some of you remember, and others of you have heard it
          spoken of, when President Young, in July 1847, while walking on
          this block, about where the Temple now stands, said to the
          brethren who were around him, "if our enemies will let us alone
          for ten years we will ask no odds of them." Ten years that day,
          brethren, we got news that an army had left the confines of the
          States at that time, for Utah. What for? Their boast was, to
          destroy the "Mormons." Did we ask any odds of them? No. Did we
          ask anything of them? No. We attempted to give them supplies, but
          they would not receive them. Brethren, this is the Church and
          kingdom of God, and we are led by holy men, men inspired by the
          Almighty. They give us a little now and a little then; we receive
          line upon line and precept upon precept, and if we give heed
          thereto, God will strengthen us, and the kingdom will grow and
          increase beneath our watchcare.
          Is it necessary for us to remember the prophecies and the
          revelations which have been given for our salvation? If we have
          the truth--the Gospel of the Son of God-and we testify that we
          have, it is just as necessary for us to remember these things as
          it is for us to be saved in the kingdom of God. That is our
          position to-day; and it is impossible for any human being who has
          made covenant with the Almighty to be saved in his kingdom if he
          disregards the revelations and counsels that are given by the
          servants of God. I do not expect strangers to understand and
          believe this as we do. Strangers have not come here for the
          purpose of identifying themselves with the Church of Jesus Christ
          of Latter-day Saints, but the people to whom I am talking came
          here for that express purpose. They came here for their souls'
          salvation, they want to be saved in the kingdom of God. They had
          the testimony in the old countries, in the States, or wherever
          they received the Gospel, that God had revealed himself to the
          children of men and that his kingdom was established on the
          earth, and they received light and intelligence which they never
          before possessed. They came here to build up the kingdom of God,
          and that kingdom is rolling forth and increasing and will
          continue to do. But are we giving way to folly and fashion to
          such an extent as to blind our minds to the great purpose we had
          in coming here? I hope not. I hope that we are living our
          Brethren, I testify to you that this is the kingdom of God, and
          that you are in a faith that will lead you back into the presence
          of your Father and God. I also testify that if the people of the
          nations of the earth will obey the Gospel they will receive
          salvation at the hands of the Almighty, and if they reject it
          they will receive condemnation at his hands at the last day.
          May God bless you, Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 /
          Erastus Snow, October 7, 1872
                            Erastus Snow, October 7, 1872
                          DISCOURSE BY ELDER ERASTUS SNOW,
          Delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, October 7, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          God has said that Zion shall be as a city set upon a hill, whose
          light can not be hid. We are called to be the children of Zion.
          The Lord has declared that Zion consists of the pure in heart. He
          has said, further, that the nations of the earth have corrupted
          their way before him, and, referring to Babylon, his command to
          his Saints is--"Come out of her, O my people, that ye be not
          partakers of her sins, that ye receive not of her plagues." The
          Bible is full of prophecies delivered by the Prophets and
          Patriarchs, and by the Savior and his Apostles, concerning the
          day and age in which we live. The end draweth nigh and the time
          approacheth speedily when the Lord will make a full end of all
          nations who fight against Zion, who reject his law and harden
          their hearts against him, his precepts and his government. It is
          our high privilege to bear this testimony, and the testimony we
          have to bear unto the people of the 19th century is but a renewal
          of that which was borne by Prophets and Saints in days past and
          gone. They spoke of the time in which we live by the spirit of
          prophecy and revelation, which was like one looking through a
          glass darkly, yet it is our privilege to behold with our eyes and
          to hear with our ears those things which Prophets and Patriarchs
          long desired to see, but died without the sight. The duty
          especially enjoined upon us today is to awake to righteousness,
          and consider the calling wherewith God has called us. We should
          consider that God has separated us by the preaching of his word
          and by the testimony of Jesus; and has called us to be a distinct
          people, distinct in this particular, that we separate ourselves
          from sin and wickedness, and, as far as possible, from the
          company of sinners and from all those customs and habits that
          attend to darken, degrade and abase the human mind, and cultivate
          those which will sanctify the affections, purify the heart and
          ennoble the whole being of man, and fit us, as far as in us lies,
          to regenerate ourselves and our race. In short, God desires, and
          has put forth his hand, to exalt his people from their low
          degree, and to lift them up and make of them a peculiar people, a
          holy nation, a kingdom of Priests unto the Most High God and the
          In all this, is there anything that can hurt, destroy or injure,
          in any wise, any portion of our fellow-men who do not feel
          disposed to join us in this glorious work, or engage with us in
          this noble enterprise? Not at all. The salvation of God is
          revealed for the good of all men who will receive it. The Gospel
          is offered without money and without price to all flesh, and the
          testimony that we bear to the world is that Jesus died for all,
          and that through the shedding of his blood, salvation may come
          unto all men who will believe and yield obedience unto the
          requirements of his Gospel. The government which is inaugurated
          and established among men by the preaching of the Gospel, and the
          administration of its holy ordinances, is a government of peace,
          love and goodwill to men, prompting those who receive it to do
          good unto all, but especially unto the household of faith.
          The duties which are enjoined upon us are, first, to our own
          household--the household of God, those who have been baptized
          into Christ by being born again of the water and of the Spirit,
          and become the children of God by adoption. Next, to all men who
          have not thus been translated from the kingdom of darkness into
          the kingdom of God's dear Son; and that love which is wrought in
          the Saints of God by the fire of the Holy Ghost through faith in
          and obedience to the Gospel, prompts all who are brought under
          its influence to yield obedience to its requirements and to labor
          for the well-being of every creature that bears the form of God.
          There is nothing in the constitution of the Gospel, or the
          organization of the Church of Christ and the kingdom of God among
          men, and the precepts that are taught of God and his servants,
          that would in the least degree inflict injury or withhold
          blessings from any member of the family of man, inasmuch as they
          place themselves in a condition to receive them, and are willing
          to accept them. But God has ordained certain everlasting
          principles of truth by which his people may be exalted, and
          without which they can not be exalted into his presence and to
          the enjoyment of his glory. All things are governed by law, and
          all good and wholesome laws, which are ordained and enacted by
          men, designed for the peace, prosperity and wellbeing of their
          fellow-creatures, should be respected, maintained and honored by
          all people, and this is one of the duties enjoined upon all
          Saints in all the commandments and revelations of God to his
          It is, further, the duty of all who are entrusted with the
          administration of law, in any department whatever, to act in good
          faith, in all purity and integrity, and in good conscience for
          the wellbeing and happiness of their fellow-creatures in the
          administration of justice, truth and judgment; and it should be
          the aim of all law-makers to consult the best interest of the
          people from whom they derive authority, or in whose behalf they
          are called to act. It is the duty of Latter-day Saints, and of
          all good people to honor all laws and regulations that are
          ordered for the freedom of all flesh. And if there are people who
          do not feel disposed to, or who can not, receive the testimony of
          the Lord Jesus, they are left with as much freedom to enjoy the
          rights and privileges which are accorded to them, as the children
          of God on the earth, as though they did believe, taking and
          suffering the consequences of their own unbelief, which
          consequence will be a failure to attain to the blessings which
          are revealed, and which God deigns to bestow upon the obedient
          and faithful.
          The word of the Lord unto all flesh is, "Come unto me, all ye
          ends of the earth, and be ye saved. Take my yoke upon you, and
          learn of me, for I am meek and lowly of heart, and ye shall find
          rest to your souls, for my yoke is easy and my burden is light."
          If any doubt the yoke of Christ being easy and his burden being
          light, let them try the experiment, and demonstrate for
          themselves. If there are any either, within or without the Church
          of Christ, who feel his yoke to be heavy and galling, and his
          burden not to be easy, I can inform them that they have not taken
          upon themselves the yoke of Christ, they are not bearing his
          burden, for they are not meek and lowly of heart, they have not
          learned their lessons correctly--how to govern and control their
          own spirits by the principles and spirit of the everlasting
          Gospel. There is nothing in its nature that is oppressive,
          galling or hard to bear. In saying this I give the experience of
          my life, for it has been devoted from my childhood to the
          contemplation of these glorious truths, with an earnest endeavor
          to apply them practically unto myself, and I have demonstrated
          them, and I speak that which I know and have experienced, and
          most assuredly believe and testify of them. And many there are
          who believe this testimony and are able to corroborate it; and
          those who are not, and have not experienced it in their lives
          have the privilege of doing so.
          It is our duty to sanctify the Lord in this land that he has
          given us for an inheritance, by observing, not only the law of
          tithing, which is one means which he has given us for that
          purpose, but by observing every precept that emanates from him,
          and living by every word that proceeds from his mouth, not
          forgetting the words of wisdom, which are designed to improve us
          in a physical point of view, to add strength to our bodies,
          lengthen our lives, to increase our powers of endurance, and to
          increase the strength, efficiency and power of the rising
          generation. Every institution which God has established in our
          midst--social, political and religious--is designed for our
          improvement, individually and collectively, as a people and as
          families, to prolong our lives and to increase our usefulness and
          our ability for good in the earth; and if we observe these
          principles and apply them diligently in our lives, praying
          earnestly with our families and in secret to the Lord for wisdom
          in doing so, our light will continue to shine, our strength to
          increase and our influence both at home and abroad, on the earth
          and in the heavens, before God, angels and good men, and the
          strength, union, faith, light and purity of the lives of the
          Latter-day Saints will be a terror to evil-doers.
          What can men do against the Lord, and against the people who fear
          him and are united in good works? What can the arm of flesh
          accomplish but its own discomfiture? The weapons of the people of
          God are not carnal, but they are mighty through faith. We war not
          against flesh and blood, but against spiritual wickedness in high
          places, and against corruption wherever it is found, reproving
          sin, folly, deception, dishonesty and wickedness of every kind.
          And if there are those who profess to be Saints, and who do not
          live the life of Saints, whose light is not shining, whose lamps
          are not trimmed and burning, whose lives and characters, precepts
          and examples do not correspond with the principles of the Gospel,
          this only testifies to the weakness of men and is nothing against
          the truth, the testimony of Jesus, or against the testimony of
          those who do live their religion and magnify their calling as
          Saints, and whose precepts and examples correspond. If some do
          not believe, will that make the truth of God of none-effect or
          less valuable? And what if some do not make their lives
          correspond with their doctrines and precepts, it will but show
          more vividly and clearly the character of those who are clean and
          pure, and who do love the truth and delight to honor it.
          I am a witness of the truth which God has revealed unto man
          pertaining to the fullness of the Gospel: that Jesus is the Son
          of God, the Savior of those who will receive him, and that he has
          laid the foundation for a more glorious and extended salvation
          than the majority of us are capable of conceiving and properly
          comprehending; and his work is onward in the earth, and it will
          continue onward and upward, until the nations of the earth shall
          be warned, and all people who will hear may hear and receive the
          Gospel, be numbered with his children, be gathered into his fold,
          become the children of Zion, and prepared for his coming, for at
          the appointed time which he has foretold, and which time is in
          the bosom of the Father, the Son will surely come in the clouds
          of heaven and the holy Angels with him, to assume the reins of
          government on the earth, and to reign King of kings and Lord of
          lords. Then, all those who will not bow to his scepter, yield
          obedience to his rule, and accept of his government and of his
          dominion will be cut off. Then comes the time spoken of when
          every knee that remains shall bow, and every tongue confess, to
          the glory of God the Father, that Jesus is the Christ.
          It is to lay the foundation of this work, and to prepare a people
          for this era that the Lord called his servant Joseph Smith, and
          revealed unto him the fullness of the Gospel in this, the 19th
          century. Elder rich testified that he knew, by the revelations of
          God to himself, that Joseph Smith was a Prophet of God. The
          question will arise in the minds of the unbelieving, How can this
          be? They marvel, like Nicodemus marvelled when Jesus told him he
          must be born again. He wondered within himself how a man could be
          born again--how, when he was old, he could enter a second time
          into his mother's womb and be born. The marvel rises in the minds
          of man, How can a man know for himself that Joseph Smith was
          truly called to be a Prophet, seer and revelator to this
          generation? That God did reveal to him the fullness of the
          Gospel? That the Book of Mormon contains the fullness of the
          Gospel--the same that was taught and revealed by the Savior and
          his disciples, as recorded in the New Testament? How can a man
          know that Angels administered to him? That God opened the visions
          of heaven to the Prophet Joseph Smith? I answer, They may know it
          precisely as the Apostle Peter knew that Jesus was the Christ,
          the Son of the living God. It is in this manner that Elder Rich
          knows that Joseph Smith was a Prophet; it is in this manner that
          I know he was a Prophet and a servant of God raised up to
          commence this work in the earth, and to lay the foundation of the
          Church and kingdom of God on the earth. When Jesus asked Peter
          and the rest of the Apostles, "Whom do men say that I, the Son of
          Man am?" They answered, "Some think thou art Elias; others that
          thou art John the Baptist risen from the dead; others that thou
          art Jeremiah or one of the Prophets." "But whom say ye that I
          am?" Peter answered--"Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living
          God." "Blessed art thou Simon Barjonah, flesh and blood hath not
          revealed this unto thee, but my Father who is in heaven; and
          verily I say unto thee, upon this rock I will build my Church,
          and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." Not upon
          Peter, not his person, for he was flesh, and must pass away like
          the flower of the field. It was not on Peter, or his successors
          in office, as is taught by the Romish church. Then who and what
          was this rock Christ referred to? It was the rock of revelation,
          revelation from the living God. "On this rock," said the Savior,
          "I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail
          against it." And I repeat that I know the truth of the Gospel, as
          Peter knew that Jesus was the Christ, by revelation unto me from
          the Father who is in heaven, and I bear this testimony unto you.
          I know that there are many, very many, whose testimony has been
          proclaimed in the ears of this generation, and is recorded in
          heaven. Their words are like the precious things that John saw in
          the vials that were before the throne of God, and their testimony
          will remain, and blessed are all those who receive it. Blessed be
          the Lord God who revealed these things unto Peter and unto his
          servant Joseph, and who has revealed it unto many more who have
          sought him with an earnest desire to know his ways! Blessed are
          those who fear him and keep his commandments!
          May God help us to live as Saints, and let our light shine! May
          God seal the testimony of the Twelve upon the hearts of those who
          desire it, that they may come unto and walk in the light, be
          saved through the truth, and inherit exaltation with the
          sanctified, is my prayer, for Christ's sake. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 / George
          Q. Cannon, October 8, 1872
                          George Q. Cannon, October 8, 1872
                         DISCOURSE BY ELDER GEORGE Q. CANNON,
            Delivered at the 42nd Semi-Annual Conference, Salt Lake City,
                                  October 8, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          Since the commencement of our Conference we have heard very much
          valuable instruction, and testimonies which have been very
          cheering to the hearts of those who have heard them; and no doubt
          every person who has attended Conference from its commencement
          until the present time, and who will continue until the
          Conference shall terminate, will feel amply rewarded for the time
          spent, and will go away feeling better prepared to perform the
          duties which may devolve upon him or her.
          There is so much to talk about connected with our circumstances
          and condition, that it requires a portion of the Spirit of the
          Lord to enable a person, in speaking, to dwell upon those points
          which are best adapted to our present requirements. We are not
          situated as any other people, that is, in many respects, and
          instructions adapted to our circumstances would differ probably
          from those which would be required by others. We have been, from
          the commencement, a peculiar people; our religion is in many
          respects at the present time a peculiar one; yet, if there be any
          distinctive peculiarity about the religion of the Latter-day
          Saints, it is that they believe and receive the Scriptures as
          they are, and do not attempt to put double meanings to their
          teachings. Our religion being peculiar, the effect of it is
          somewhat peculiar. The message which the Elders of this Church
          declare when they go forth to preach the Gospel has a different
          effect, upon people who listen to it, to that which is declared
          by any other denomination. Not because faith in Jesus Christ,
          repentance of sin, baptism for the remission of sins, and laying
          on of hands for the reception of the Holy Ghost are taught, but
          because, following these principles, there is declared unto the
          people the propriety and the necessity of gathering out from the
          various nations where they dwell, from the midst of their kindred
          and their former associates, and concentrating at the place which
          God, as the Elders testify, had selected as the place for his
          people to reside in. This is a strange doctrine, and one that is
          peculiar to the Later-day Saints, and, as I have said, the
          effects upon the people are peculiar. No sooner do they hear the
          proclamation of this doctrine, and in some instances before, than
          there springs up in the hearts of those who have received the
          testimony of the Elders a desire to gather out, and be associated
          with the people with whom they have joined, and whose faith they
          have received. I suppose that among the thousands who live in
          this Territory, who have been gathered from the various States of
          this country, and from the various countries of Europe, of Asia
          and the islands of the sea, there is scarcely one to be found who
          did not, as soon as he or she embraced the Gospel, have an
          intense desire to gather with the people of God, and to become
          closely associated with them, to believe as they believed, to
          live as they lived, to share their trials, to partake of their
          prosperity or adversity, as the case might be; to receive
          instructions from the man whom they believed God had chosen to
          preside over his Church upon the earth. And the effect upon the
          Latter-day Saints in every land is the same in this respect. You
          may travel to the most inhospitable climate--to the bleak regions
          of the north, or to the sunny climes of the south; to the lands
          of sterility and barrenness, where hardship seems to be the lot
          of the people, where privation is one of the incidents of their
          existence; or to the lands o fertility, where the inhabitants
          acquire a livelihood with ease; in fact, no matter where you go,
          nor whatever the circumstances may be which surround the people,
          when they hear the testimony of the servants of God, and receive
          and at upon it, the same spirit takes possession of the people,
          and they gladly forsake the lands of their nativity, and the
          associations of life--of early life and mature age, the homes of
          their childhood and the graves of their ancestors, and wend their
          way with joy and gladness to this strange land, which God, as
          they verily believe and know, by the testimony of his Holy
          Spirit, has prepared as a resting place for them. This is the
          universal effect wherever the Gospel has been preached, and in
          this respect the Latter-day Saints are a peculiar people. 
          But though we have gathered together, as we have, in this
          country, there seems to be in the minds of a great many people a
          disposition to overlook the reasons which God our heavenly Father
          has had in view in gathering us out, and collecting us together,
          and making us one people. The prophecies which were recorded in
          ancient days, as well as those which have been given us in the
          day in which we live, all point forward to this great
          dispensation, as a time when God should do a great and mighty
          work in the midst of the earth, and when a great revolution
          should be effected and a great reformation accomplished among the
          children of men; when he should have a peculiar people--a people
          who should be gathered out from all nations, a people upon whom
          he should place his name, and whom he should recognize as his. We
          are told by the Revelator John, that a time would come when the
          people of God should be commanded to some out of Babylon, out of
          confusion, when they should be gathered out from every nation,
          from the remotest parts of the earth, and when he should make of
          them a great and mighty people.
          We see a partial fulfillment of this prediction in this
          Territory--this people are gathered from various lands, and are
          dwelling together in peace and in union, without litigation,
          animosity or strife, all harmonizing together--their interests
          blended in one. To my mind this is one of the most remarkable
          phenomena to be witnessed on the face of the earth. It strikes me
          as such, and although familiar with it from my childhood, I look
          with wonder and astonishment at the great work that has been done
          in gathering this people together. Visitors come here, and they
          are full of admiration for the great labors that have been
          accomplished by the Latter-day Saints in transforming this
          wilderness land into a fruitful field in creating these gardens,
          in erecting these houses, in adorning this land with beautiful
          habitations and with groves, and making this soil, once so barren
          and sterile, teem with fertility. They admire the physical works
          which we have accomplished; but to my mind there is something
          greater than this to be admired. There are works which far
          surpass the work accomplished on the face of nature. When I
          contemplate the work that has been accomplished in gathering the
          people from the various nations; when I see men of various
          languages and, originally, of various creeds, born under various
          forms of government, spread throughout this land, dwelling
          together in peace, union and love, worshiping together in the one
          Tabernacle, or in the same places of worship throughout the
          length and breadth of this Territory, I see something which to my
          mind is far, far more surprising than anything wrought by our
          physical labors. I see a power wonderful in its effect--a power
          which has moulded the hearts and blended the feelings of the
          children of men, and created a oneness in their midst, the
          effects of which are witnessed all around us. God has done this,
          and to his name the glory must be ascribed. Man cannot do these
          things, he cannot thus effect and operate upon the minds of his
          fellowmen. He may produce some effect, may accomplish some
          results, but that union, love and harmony which we witness among
          ourselves is beyond the power of man to bring about--it is the
          power of God which he has manifested; and for wise and great ends
          has this wonderful God-like power been restored, which binds the
          hearts of men to their fellowmen, and causes them to co-operate,
          as they have done in this land, in accomplishing the labors which
          have devolved upon us.
          But yet, though I can admire these things, brethren and sisters,
          there are many things which we have neglected to do, which
          devolve upon us. God has given unto us a great mission in the
          earth, and whether we realize it or not it is a fact. He has
          entrusted to us, as a people, a great and mighty work to perform.
          We look around us in the various nations as well as in our own
          nation, and we see a great many evils existing, we see these
          evils increasing in magnitude, and becoming more formidable and
          threatening every year that passes over our heads. Probably we
          who reside in these mountains, and have done so for a quarter of
          a century, can realize the evidence of these evils better than
          they who live in the midst of them and witness their gradual
          growth without noticing the great changes which have been
          effected. But we see extravagance, corruption, and a lack of
          virtue and public morality; we see the breaking down of those
          barriers which formerly existed, and a sapping and demoralization
          of public sentiment and of private morality throughout the nation
          of which we form a part, as well as in other nations.
          Now there is laid upon us, as a people, the labor of establishing
          righteousness in the earth. There is laid upon us the duty of
          building up in purity and power a system which God has revealed
          unto us. Not a system of theocracy to be exclusive in its
          effects, not to build up a class, a priesthood that should
          domineer and wield unjust and oppressive power over the hearts
          and minds of the children of men. Our mission is to lay the
          foundation and to build up a system under which all the
          inhabitants of the land can dwell in peace and safety. But I
          notice a difficulty in our own midst, and that is that we yield,
          to a great extent, to the tendencies of the age, to the
          influences which surround us on every hand. We must refrain from
          this, we must set our faces like flint against every species of
          corruption, against every kind of wrong, in whatever form it may
          approach us. We must seek with all the energy that we have, to
          build up in truth and righteousness that which God has committed
          unto us, and establish impregnably the system of reformation with
          which we are entrusted. There can be no better way for us to
          commence than by listening to the counsels that have been given
          unto us in the past, and which have been the means of producing
          the peace, happiness and prosperity which we witness among us.
          There are tendencies to be witnessed in this city, and among our
          own people here, that we have to guard against. We well know
          that, of late, there has been an increase of wealth, and of the
          means of acquiring luxuries and comforts. God has bestowed these
          upon us, and the question now is with us, Will we use these,
          means aright, with an eye single to his glory? Will we, with our
          increased prosperity, devote ourselves in the future, as we have
          in the past, to the building up of the kingdom of God, as our
          paramount duty? Not for our own aggrandizement, but for the
          benefit of our fellow-men in every land, as well as for the
          benefit of those who reside in this Territory. If we do this, God
          will bless us. But you know what the fate of all people has been
          who have been similarly situated to us in the beginning. In their
          early days they were pure, they were not extravagant, they were
          simple in their tastes, habits and dress. They did not allow
          their minds to go out after earthly things, or to be placed upon
          them. But means and wealth will always increase among frugal,
          economical, virtuous and industrious people, for it is one of the
          natural consequences which follow industry and well-directed
          labor, and we are no exceptions to this rule. We live in a land
          that has been barren and sterile above all lands on this
          continent, and by well-directed energy and industry, by
          perseverance temperance and frugality, we have been blessed, and
          now the fruits of our long-continued abstemiousness and industry
          are beginning to flow in upon us, and we are becoming wealthy.
          Our lands are becoming valuable, our surroundings are becoming,
          if not luxurious, at least comfortable, wealth is pouring into
          our laps, and the prospect is that ere long we will be as wealthy
          a community, probably, as can be found between the two oceans.
          This seems to be the natural tendency of events at the present
          Now the question arises--and I deem it an important one for this
          Conference--it has rested on my mind, as I doubt not it has on
          the minds of the brethren--will we as a people devote the means
          that God is giving unto us, for the preservation and continuation
          of that system that he has revealed unto us? Or will we scatter
          it abroad, destroy ourselves, and spoil the future which God has
          in store for us? We must be a different people from every other
          that has preceded us, if we fulfill the predictions of the holy
          Priesthood, for God has said, through the mouth of his prophet
          Daniel, thousands of years ago, that this kingdom should not be
          given into the hands of another people, but it should stand for
          ever. It should not share the fate of previous attempts of the
          same character, and be overthrown in consequence of the weakness
          of the people, and the abandonment by them of the principles of
          truth and righteousness. There is nothing plainer to my mind than
          this, that if the Latter-day Saints become luxurious and
          extravagant; if they love the world and forsake their former
          purity; if they forsake their frugality and temperance, and the
          principles which God has revealed unto them, and by the practice
          of which they are to-day the people that they are; we shall be
          overthrown as others have been overthrown. But I do not look for
          any such result, for I believe firmly in the prediction of
          Daniel, that this work, when established, shall not be given into
          the hands of another people, but it shall stand for ever, and
          there will be means and agencies used and brought to bear on the
          minds of the people, to prevent such a catastrophe as that to
          which I have alluded--to prevent the downfall of the system and
          the overthrow of those connected with it, and to prevent the
          victory of that which is evil over that which is good, holy and
          These means have been indicated in revelations which have been
          given unto us. We are not living as we should live. As a people
          we follow the systems of our fathers in regard to the management
          of wealth. We follow in the footsteps of those who have preceded
          us. We are innovators so far as religious thought and doctrines
          are concerned, and we have been bold innovators. We have not
          hesitated to adopt great reforms, and to proclaim them, and we
          have sought, with all the energies God has bestowed upon us, to
          make them facts in the earth. We have proclaimed this doctrine of
          gathering, and the people have been gathered together. This is a
          great innovation, it is a bold step, and it has resulted in
          success thus far. It is not now a novelty, or a new and untried
          experiment, for the gathering of the people together has been
          going on for forty years and upwards. But it was a great
          innovation when introduced. It is so with other doctrines which
          the Elders of this Church have taught. God inspired their hearts,
          and they, regardless of all consequences, fearlessly proclaimed
          the truth which he imparted unto them. We have made a great
          revolution in our domestic relations, and in our social system.
          We have taken a bold stand, and have been fearless of the
          consequences, because God, as we testify, has revealed unto us a
          principle that should be practiced, and which we should carry
          out, and be the pioneers in inaugurating for the redemption of
          men and women, and that should check, and, in fact, effectually
          cure, the evils under which Christendom has groaned for
          centuries. The Elders of this Church did this, and have risked
          all the consequences, from the time the system was inaugurated
          until the present time. The results of this we can all see, in
          the purity and chastity of our community; for strange as it may
          seem, in no other land are the chastity and virtue of women so
          highly respected as in Utah. Throughout the length and breadth of
          this Territory public sentiment is utterly opposed to anything
          that would violate that chastity and virtue.
          In these directions, then, we have been bold and fearless
          innovators. But so far as financial matters are concerned, so far
          a the accumulation and management of wealth are concerned, we
          have not followed in the path which God has marked out. Yet the
          time must come, and we may as well prepare our minds for it, when
          we shall have to take a great step in this direction, and when we
          shall have to follow the path indicated by God in order to escape
          the evils that are inevitable, and that will otherwise most
          assuredly come upon, and overwhelm us.
          I have told you that others who have preceded us have fallen a
          prey to evils. The increase of wealth in every nation has been
          attended with fatal consequences. We have but to read the history
          of our race from the beginning until the present time to rest
          assured of that. Men have said, probably, to all of you who have
          been out and mingled with the world, "It is very well for you
          Latter-day Saints to talk about your condition now, because you
          are a primitive people, you are a young community, you have not
          been tempted and tried. Wait till you increase in wealth, and
          until you become familiar with the sins which surround the
          wealthy. Wait until you are brought in contact with luxury; wait
          until the spirit of reform which animated your pioneers dies out,
          and a generation rises up who will think more of the world, then
          there will be a different feeling and spirit, and you will not be
          persecuted, hated or despised. You will become more popular,
          because the world will become familiarized with your ideas. Then
          'Mormonism' and the Latter-day Saints will become like every
          other people that have preceded them--overcome by the luxuries of
          the world, and by the love of riches." Have you not heard remarks
          of this kind time and time again? Doubtless they have been made
          to you or in your hearing.
          Now, how shall we avert these evils? It is very well to say that
          God has established this kingdom; it is very well to say that
          this is his Church. Did he never have a Church or kingdom on the
          earth before? Did he never have a people on the earth before?
          Why, most certainly he did. He had churches before this; he had
          people before he chose the Latter-day Saints. He had communities
          that he owned and recognized before we were organized. Yet they
          went the way of all the earth, and the Church of God disappeared
          from the midst of the inhabitants of the earth. Luxury,
          corruption, vice, extravagance, the love of wealth and the
          allurements of sin prevailed in all the earth, and the devil--his
          satanic majesty--held high carnival throughout the earth because
          of the influence and power of these things over the hearts of the
          children of men. It is true that God established his work before;
          we know it to be true; and because he has established it in our
          day, we need not think that he is going to preserve it without
          using means to do so. He has revealed, and will continue to
          reveal, law, and that law must be obeyed by us, or we can not be
          preserved. The time must come when we must obey that which has
          been revealed to us as the Order of Enoch, when there shall be no
          rich and no poor among the Latter-day Saints; when wealth will
          not be a temptation; when every man will love his neighbor as he
          does himself; when every man and woman will labor for the good of
          all as much as for self. That day must come, and we may as well
          prepare our hearts for it, brethren, for as wealth increases I
          see more and more a necessity for the institution of such an
          order. As wealth increases, luxury and extravagance have more
          power over us. The necessity for such an order is very great, and
          God, undoubtedly, in his own time and way, will inspire his
          servant to introduce it among the people. I do not wish to
          foreshadow when it will be done, or what the circumstances will
          be that will call it forth, for this is not my province; but I
          feel led to talk upon it, and to prepare my own heart, and to
          seek, with all the faith and influence I have, to prepare the
          hearts of my brethren and sisters for the introduction of this
          order. It will doubtless be a time of trial, and will be attended
          with many things that will test our feelings; but when we view
          the great results that will follow its introduction and its
          perfect establishment upon the earth, we should be filled with
          thanksgiving and praise that God has devised a scheme of this
          kind. You can see already the effects of the partial introduction
          of something akin to it in co-operation. We have had that
          established in our midst, and what are its effects? We witness a
          gradual diffusion of means throughout the community, greatly
          benefiting all its members. One of the effects of this which we
          witness is that wealth does not increase so rapidly in the hands
          of the few, and that the poor are not kept in poverty to much.
          Before co-operation started, you doubtless saw and deplored the
          increase of wealth in some few hands. There was rapidly growing
          in our midst a class of monetary men composing an aristocracy of
          wealth. Our community was menaced by serious dangers through
          this, because if a community is separated into two classes, one
          poor and the other rich, their interests are diverse. Poverty and
          wealth do no work together well--one lords it over the other; one
          becomes the prey of the other. This is apt to be the case in all
          societies, in ours as well as others; probably not to so great an
          extent, but still it was sufficiently serious to menace us as a
          people with danger. God inspired his servant to counsel the
          people to enter into co-operation, and it has now been practiced
          for some years in our midst with the best results. Those who have
          put in a little means have had that more than doubled since Z. C.
          M. I. started--three years last March. And so it is with
          co-operative herds, co-operative factories, and co-operative
          institutions of all kinds which have been established in our
          midst, and all the people can partake of the benefits of this
          system. You can see the effect of co-operation on the people. But
          this is only a limited system, it does not extend as far as
          needed, although it required faith to enter into this; yet it
          will require more to enter upon the other of which I have spoken.
          While upon co-operation, let me here say that we can witness the
          good effects of this to the Church, and we shall feel them in
          days to come. President Young, the other day, paid into the
          co-operative establishment--Zion's Co-operative Mercantile
          Institution--a hundred thousand dollars tithing--the tithing of
          his own personal means--and it is now where it will yield profits
          for the benefit of the whole Church. Now, if this amount had been
          used to pay the hands on the public works and those laboring for
          the Church, how long do you think it would have lasted? It would
          very soon have been used up. But I have admired the wisdom, and
          have felt thankful that there was a sum placed where it could be
          used for the benefit of the work, and at the same time yield a
          handsome return for the investment. I do not think it will take
          more than three years, if the Co-operative Institution prospers
          as well in the future as in the past, for this sum to double
          itself in the shape of dividends. I refer to this in passing,
          because it is a testimony to-day, after three years and a half
          have elapsed, to the wisdom that prompted the establishment of
          this institution; but notwithstanding this you are aware that
          many cried out against it, and denounced it as very unwise, and
          likely to end disastrously, and several apostatized through its
          inauguration because they wanted all the profits themselves, and
          were unwilling the people should have any. But we have the facts
          before us. The people who entered into it have been blessed
          exceedingly, and they will continue to be so if they persevere.
          But I have said that this is only a stepping stone to something
          beyond that is more perfect, and that will result in the
          diffusion of the blessings of God to a greater extent among us.
          In other lands you see the people divided into classes. You see
          beggars in the street, and men and women who are short of food,
          dwelling in hovels and in the poorest of tenements. At the same
          time, others revel in luxury, they have everything they need, and
          more than they need to satisfy all their wants. Every
          philanthropist who contemplates this, does so with sadness, and
          measure after measure has been devised to remedy this state of
          things. Our community is not a prey to these evils. Beggary and
          want are unknown in this Territory; at the same time we have no
          very rich men among us. Like other new communities we are more on
          an equality than we would be if we were older, and if we were to
          become an old community under the system which prevailed before
          co-operation was established, then it is very probable that some
          of the class distinctions to be seen in other communities would
          be seen in ours. It is to avoid this that God has revealed that
          which I have alluded to, and his design is to bring to pass a
          better condition of affairs, by making men equal in earthly
          things. He has given this earth to all his children; and he has
          given to us air, light, water and soil; he has given to us the
          animals that are upon the earth, and all the elements by which it
          is surrounded. They are not given to one or to some, to the
          exclusion of others; not to one class, or to one nation to the
          exclusion of other classes or other nations. But he has given
          them to his children in all nations alike. Man, however, abuses
          the agency that God has given him, and he transgresses his laws
          by oppressing his fellow-men. There is selfishness in the rich,
          and there is covetousness in the poor. There is a clashing of
          interest, and there is not that feeling among men which we are
          told the Gospel should bring--a feeling to love our neighbor as
          we love ourselves. This does not exist on the earth now, it is
          reserved for God to restore it. We pray that God's will may be
          done on earth as it is in heaven, and when it shall, then the
          order which exists in heaven will be practiced and enjoyed by men
          on the earth. I do not expect when we get to heaven, that we
          shall see some riding in their chariots, enjoying every luxury,
          and crowned with crown of glory, while the rest are in poverty.
          I have spoken longer than I intended, but there are some few
          thoughts on my mind to which I will allude in this connection
          before I sit down, and that is, brethren and sisters, that we
          should, to the extent of our ability, foster these institutions
          that have been established among us. We should do all that we can
          to sustain ourselves--sustain our own factories, do all in our
          power to maintain these things that we have established, and seek
          with all our energy to foster them. We have factories here that
          can make as good cloth as any of their size, probably, in the
          nation, they ought to be sustained by us. Brother Erastus Snow
          related an incident a day or two ago in relation to their
          operations at St. George. They received quite a quantity of cloth
          from the factory of President Young. He told the store-keeper at
          St. George not to say anything about where it was manufactured.
          At the same time they received a consignment of eastern
          manufactured goods. They were put side by side on the shelves of
          the store and sold to the people. There were very few--some two
          or three persons--who knew that any of these goods were
          manufactured in the Territory. They sold very readily to the
          people, who said they were the best goods they had bought. They
          wore them, and they wore well. Several lots were received from
          the President's factory, and sold in the same way, the people
          remaining in ignorance a good while as to the place of their
          manufacture, and imagining that they were brought from the east.
          There is an idea prevailing among many of us that something
          manufactured abroad is better than that manufactured at home.
          President George A. Smith, Elder Woodruff and myself, on our
          recent visit to California, examined the Oregon and California
          goods. We went through a woolen factory there, where very
          excellent goods were made. We saw some blankets and some other
          things which were manufactured there, which can not be surpassed.
          I recollected that I had heard parties here, who had purchased
          Oregon cloth, praise it very highly; but in examining that class
          of goods in california, I found that the cloth manufactured in
          this Territory compared very favorably with it, and had they been
          put side by side, bolt by bolt, it would have been very difficult
          to tell which was Utah and which was Oregon manufacture. Indeed
          if there was any preference I was inclined to give it to our own
          We have factories that can make straw hats, straw bonnets and
          every thing of this kind. We have good tanners' and shoe shops,
          and harness shops. We have a great many manufactories in our
          Territory that should be fostered by us as a people. We should
          guard against luxury and extravagance, and use that which is
          manufactured at home.
          That God may bless us, that he may pour out his Holy Spirit upon
          this Conference; upon those who speak and those who hear, is my
          prayer in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 / John
          Taylor, October 7, 1872
                            John Taylor, October 7, 1872
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER JOHN TAYLOR,
            Delivered at the 42nd Semi-Annual Conference, Salt Lake City,
                                  October 7, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          I am happy to have the privilege of meeting with and speaking to
          the Saints on the present occasion. If I were inclined to take a
          text I would repeat a passage made use of by Jesus, which is
          something like this--"Take my yoke upon you and learn of me, for
          I am meek and lowly of heart and you shall find rest to your
          souls." Perhaps I may not have got it verbatim, however the
          principle is there, and you can correct it from the written word.
          The ideas contained in the saying of the Redeemer are rather
          peculiar. The yoke that is there referred to would seem to imply
          a degree of servitude of some kind or other, and men generally
          look upon such expressions in that point of view. The nations of
          the earth, generally, are under some kind of rule and government.
          The religious portion of mankind are also under a species of
          government and rule, and no matter where you go, you find a
          influence of this kind more or less prevailing among men. We
          stand here in rather an anomalous position. We have a church with
          its government or laws, and we have also a government and laws
          according to the organization of the United States. Hence our
          obligations are twofold, one as subjects of the United States,
          the other as subjects of the Church of God. And then, were we to
          go a little further, we might also add, of the kingdom of God.
          Now, in every government of men that exists anywhere on the face
          of the earth, there is a species of rule associated with and
          founded on authority voluntarily given by the people or usurped
          by the rulers, according to circumstances; but all mankind,
          everywhere, are under some form of dominion, government or rule.
          The same thing applies also to churches and the worship of God.
          There are various systems in existence on the earth, including
          Judaism, Mahomedanism, Pantheism, and heathenism of many kinds,
          as it has existed for generations in many parts of the earth; and
          there is christianity with the multifarious ideas, rule, and
          authority of the Christian churches as they exist, scattered
          abroad in the earth, principally in Europe and America as well as
          in some parts of Africa and Asia. But whether we refer to the
          Pagan, Jewish, Christian, or any other form of religion, its
          followers are expected to submit to some kind of authority; to
          subscribe to certain articles of faith, and to submit to certain
          forms, laws and ordinances, according to their several theories.
          The same thing precisely, exists among the nations; they have
          their various forms of rule, government and dominion, and they
          exact certain conditions from their subjects. No matter what kind
          of government, it requires a species of obedience from all
          persons living under it; for government, of course, necessarily
          implies rule, authority, dominion, governors and governed, or law
          and the execution of that law. All these principles exist in one
          form or another over all the face of the wide earth whereon we
          live. We can not separate ourselves from that, go where we will.
          In a despotic government the power to dictate and control all its
          affairs is vested in the emperor, according to his own will and
          pleasure, sometimes, perhaps, modified by counsel, which he can
          receive or reject at pleasure. In other kinds of government, such
          as are called limited monarchies, the people hold a certain part
          of the power or authority in their own hands, and give a certain
          part to the government. The government of England belongs to this
          class. There they have a king or queen, as the case may be, at
          the head of the government, and two houses called the Lords and
          Commons, the latter are elected by and represent the people. It
          is what is called a popular government, the people having a
          voice, but at the same time they concede a certain amount of
          their power to their legislators, who manage their affairs
          according to their ideas of what would be most beneficial for the
          The government of the United States is what is called a republic.
          In a form of government of this kind the foundation of all law,
          power and authority is the voice or will of the people; that is
          the genius of the government. It is based upon a written
          constitution granting unto the legislature power to do thus and
          so, and to go no further; and while they who make and administer
          the laws confine themselves within the limits of that
          constitution, their acts are what is called constitutional. When
          they go beyond that, their acts are called unconstitutional, that
          is, they deprive the people of certain rights guaranteed to them
          by the written compact that they have entered into. I speak of
          these things simply to elucidate certain ideas that I wish to
          But to proceed further. If we--the people in this Territory, or
          in other Territories or in the States, confer certain powers on
          the General Government, we no longer retain them, they are ceded
          away by us to others. If we give to our legislators certain
          authority, they hold that authority, and it is for us to submit
          to the laws which may be enacted by them. This is what is called
          republicanism, and it is also in agreement with the theory of a
          limited monarchy. Whenever a people give up certain rights they
          ought to honor the parties into whose hands they place them. The
          President of the United States ought to be sustained; so ought
          the ministers of the government of England, by the people over
          whom they preside, because they are acting for and on their
          behalf and according to their dictates. If you go to some other
          governments they ask no odds of the people. Say they, "We will be
          sustained, if we have to sustain ourselves by the sword."
          We come now to religious matters, and here in our own country are
          Methodists, Presbyterians, Baptists, and a host of others. I need
          not go to foreign countries and examine their religions. I wish
          to arrive at certain conclusions, and to do so I have no need to
          go beyond the confines of the United States. Here we have the
          Methodists, Presbyterians, Baptists, Episcopalians, Roman
          Catholics, Quakers, Shakers and so forth. Very well, all these
          sects have their own peculiar ideas of church government. The
          Methodist has his Discipline--a system got up by the ministers of
          that church that all its members have to be governed by. They
          must come within the purview and be under the influence thereof.
          If you ask a Methodist to become a Latter-day Saint, he might
          say, and truly, "I have not the privilege of being Methodist and
          Latter-day Saint at the same time." A man can not be a Baptist
          and a Methodist at the same time, neither can he be a Methodist
          and a shaking Quaker. Why? Because he is bound by the articles of
          the Discipline of his church, and he must submit to that. So it
          is in regard to the Catholics. Many of you have no doubt read
          recently of Pere Hyacinthe, who, a short time ago, was very
          popular among the Roman Catholics. But he dissented from their
          views; and among other things he took to himself a wife, which
          was contrary to their ideas and creed, and probably his own
          views, the result was that they excommunicated him, and they
          treated him as if he had been dead, and had a funeral, following
          him to this grave while he was yet living. This is according to
          their ideas, and he, being a Catholic, had no right to expect
          anything else. A Catholic priest must submit to the laws of the
          priesthood, and they have excommunicated him for departing
          therefrom, and he had no cause to complain. We may have our own
          peculiar ideas about the propriety of this, that and the other
          religious faith, ceremonies and forms of worship, but I am now
          speaking of law, and of governments, and of the arrangements that
          peoples, nations, churches, and the members of churches bind
          themselves to be governed by.
          The same thing applies to any of the various sects that exist in
          Christendom. The Baptist commences a church, and he believes in
          baptism by immersion, but he could not be a Latter-day Saint.
          Why? Because he can be baptized by anybody not having authority
          from God, and he does not believe that baptism is for the
          remission of sins. According to his ideas he must have his sins
          forgiven first, and then be baptized after a while. He could not
          be a Latter-day Saint, because his ideas and ours are at
          variance. If a man is a Baptist, as long as he remains so, he
          must submit to their law. If he is a Methodist, and remains so,
          he must submit to their discipline, be it right or wrong, the
          question of their laws being Scriptural or not has to be decided
          in and of itself. It is the same way with a nation. If I were in
          Russia, and did not like the government, I might, if they would
          allow me, go to England, come to the United States, or go to one
          of the Southern republics, and become a citizen thereof, but I
          could not be a republican in Russia. If I went to England, I
          should have to be subject to the laws of England, and the same if
          I came to the United States, hence the principle that I mentioned
          before is applicable all the way through, no matter which way you
          look at it. I am not saying at present which of these
          governments, whether religious or political, is right, I am
          merely trying to elucidate a principle that exists among and is
          acknowledged by men. If I go to live in any country on the face
          of the earth, I have to be subject to its laws, and if I am a
          reasonable, intelligent man, I acknowledge the propriety of my
          being so. If I join the Methodist church I have a right to be a
          good Methodist, and to submit to their discipline. If I join the
          Baptist church I have a right to be a good Baptist, and to submit
          to their discipline, creed, laws and so on, for I join them
          knowing that I ought to submit to them, and as an honorable man I
          do so or leave it.
          Well, we stand here in a peculiar position, as before stated. We
          are here in a religious capacity, and we are here in a political
          capacity. As religionists our faith is that God has spoken, and
          that angels have ministered to men; that the everlasting Gospel
          has been restored in its fullness, simplicity and purity, as it
          existed in Jesus's day. We believe in Apostles and Prophets, and
          in the principle of revelation--in God communicating with the
          human family. These things were taught to us before we became
          members of this Church, and we received them as part and parcel
          of our faith, and having faith in this system we obeyed it. We
          believed in being baptized for the remission of sins, and having
          hands laid upon us for the reception of the Holy Ghost. That is
          our faith, it has been communicated to us by revelation, by the
          opening heavens, by the voice of God, by the ministering of holy
          angels, and by the testimony of God's servants, as they have gone
          forth through the world.
          We also believe in having a Priesthood--a ruling power to
          regulate and dictate, under the guidance of the Almighty, the
          affairs of his Church and kingdom upon the earth. That is our
          faith, and it was taught to us when we first listened to
          "Mormonism." Before we were baptized into this Church we believed
          the men whom we heard proclaim its principles were inspired by
          the Almighty, and we pray to God for them daily now, that the
          revelations of Heaven may be unfolded to their view, and that the
          purposes of God may be made plain to their understanding, that
          they may be able to instruct the people and lead them in the way
          of life. This is our faith, and when we talk about these things
          we do so understandingly, there is no halfway business about it.
          We meet here to-day in Conference, believing in these principles.
          When we talk about paying our tithing, we believe that it is the
          duty of all who ever obeyed the Gospel of Jesus Christ to
          contribute one-tenth of their increase to the Lord. As Latter-day
          Saints we subscribe to this, and we believe it is right to be
          honest, and to show integrity in this as in everything else. We
          believe in being truthful, virtuous, pure and holy, and we
          believe in keeping the commandments of God in all things. This is
          part and parcel of our religious faith and belief, and we have,
          from time to time, of our won free will, subscribed to these very
          principles of which I have spoken; and we have held up our hands
          time and time again to sustain the authorities of the Church and
          kingdom of God upon the earth. Having said so much in regard to
          these things, I desire, very briefly, to compare the position
          that we occupy with that which others occupy.
          I have already told you that there exists a variety of
          governments on the earth, and that all men are expected to be in
          subjection to the laws and usages of the governments under which
          they live. I have told you that in England they have a limited
          monarchy. At the present time a queen presides over their
          destinies. How did she come to that office? She was born of
          royalty, and inherited it by lineal descent. The people had no
          choice in the matter. She has been, I believe, a very good,
          virtuous, exemplary woman, and has ruled with mildness,
          generosity and kindness among her people; but if she had done
          otherwise, she was still their queen. Now I want to talk about
          what people call equal rights, and to examine a certain principle
          in relation to these things. What say had the people of England
          in regard to their queen? None at all. The President of the
          United States is elected by the people, therefore he is what may
          be termed the people's candidate. How often do they elect a
          President of the United States? Once every four years, and
          consequently there is great excitement now on account of the
          coming Presidential election. The people are ranging themselves
          into parties, and each party using all the influence they possess
          to elect their own special and peculiar favorites. Besides the
          President, there are Legislators and Governors. Governors
          generally hold their office for four years; Senators of the
          United States from four to six years, according to circumstances;
          members of the House of Representatives for two years. In many of
          the States and Territories the Legislators are elected for two
          years, and hence, during the time for which they are elected,
          they have a perfect right to use their own judgment in enacting
          laws for the benefit of the people, being sworn not to transcend
          certain bounds laid down as their guide. If they should be ever
          so bad during their term of office, and should enact oppressive
          laws, the people have no right to change them until their time
          expires, unless, from some flagrant violation of their trust,
          they should be impeached.
          How is it in the churches? With the Catholics it is once a priest
          always a priest, except in such cases as that of Pere Hyacinthe,
          and then they bury them. In some churches the bishops and other
          authorities hold office during good behavior, or for lifetime; in
          some churches they are voted for by a certain conclave according
          to circumstances and their own peculiar notions and dogmas, and
          in very many instances these officers hold their offices for life
          without any counteraction whatever, unless they violate their own
          constitutions, laws or discipline, when they are liable to be
          dealt with according to the laws and regulations of their several
          churches. Now nobody thinks they are very badly oppressed in all
          this. They enter these churches voluntarily, they are not bound
          to stay in them, and they leave them when they like.
          Now let us contrast our position with that of other people in
          these respects. We hear a good deal about one man power. I want
          to examine that power a little, and see how it exists, and how
          far it extends. We believe in two principles--one is the voice of
          God, the other is the voice of the people. For instance, we
          believe that nobody but God could set the religious world right,
          we believe that none but God could have given any man correct
          information in regard to doctrine and ordinances. We believe that
          God did instruct Joseph Smith in relation to both, and also
          pertaining to the government of his people here on the earth. How
          are this people selected and set apart? Joseph Smith was selected
          by the Lord, and set apart, and ordained by holy angels. How with
          the others? By the authority which God conferred on Joseph he
          selected, set apart, and ordained others to the various orders
          and organizations of the Priesthood. We know that the Lord, in
          former times, called some men who did not magnify their calling,
          and who were set aside as unfit for the Master's use. Jesus, for
          instance, called Judas to be one of the Twelve, and Judas
          betrayed him, and he was cut off from the Twelve. We have had
          many instances in our Church of a similar nature, men have been
          found unfaithful, and they have been cut off. By whom? By the
          authority of that Priesthood of which they formed a part. That
          Priesthood has the same power now that it had formerly--to bind
          on earth and it is bound in heaven, to loose on earth and it is
          loosed in heaven. How does this Priesthood stand in relation to
          the people? It is not thrust upon them as the queens of England,
          the kings of France, the emperor of Austria, or as the former
          king, but now emperor of Prussia, are; no, it is not thrust upon
          the people in any such way. It is precisely in the same way that
          the Israelites were organized in former times--God gave them
          certain laws, and all the people said "Amen," then the laws
          became binding upon Israel. The position we occupy is this: the
          Holy Ghost, which has been given to all who have obeyed the
          Gospel, and have lived faithful to its precepts, takes of the
          things of God, and shows them forth through a living Priesthood
          to a people enlightened and instructed by the Spirit of
          revelation from God, and the people thus enlightened, instructed
          and blessed by the spirit of light, voluntarily and gladly
          sustain the Priesthood who minister unto them. When Joseph Smith
          was upon the earth, he did not force himself upon the people as
          these kings and emperors do, but he presented himself before them
          every six months, at the Annual or Semi-Annual Conference, and
          the people had a chance to lift up their hands to receive or
          reject him. That was the position occupied by Joseph Smith, and
          those associated with him, in guiding the affairs of the Church
          and kingdom of God upon the earth, and it is precisely so with
          President Young. He stands here as the representative of God to
          the people, as the President of the Church of Jesus Christ of
          Latter-day Saints. He is, or ought to be, full of light, life,
          revelation and the power of God, and he is, and bears testimony
          to it. He ought to be able to lead the people in the paths of
          life, and he is. He is the choice of God, and what more? He is
          the choice of the people of God. Has he a right to say, "I am
          chosen, I am elected, I am President, and I will do as I darned
          please, and help yourselves?" No, he presents himself before you,
          and if there is any man who has aught against him, he has the
          privilege of holding up his hand to signify the same. That is the
          position of our President--he is brought to a test every six
          months, as it rolls around, before the assembled Conference of
          the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. It is the same
          with the Twelve, the President of the Stake, the High Council,
          the Presidents of Seventies, and with all the leading officers of
          the Church--they are all put to this test twice a year, and the
          people have the privilege of voting for or against them, just as
          they please.
          Here then, on the one hand, there is the voice of God. Shall we
          object to it? Who made us? Who organized us, and the elements
          with which we are surrounded and that we inhale? Who organized
          the planetary system that we see around us? Who provides
          breakfast, dinner and supper for the millions that dwell on the
          face of the earth? Who clothes them, as he does the lilies of the
          field? Who imparts unto man his breath, life, health, his powers
          of locomotion, thought, and all the godlike attributes with which
          he is endowed? Where did they come from? Who has controlled and
          managed the affairs of the world from its creation until the
          present time? The Great I am, the Great Eloheim, the Great God
          who is our Father. We bow before him. Is it a hardship to
          reverence the Lord our God? Is it a hardship to have him for our
          instructor? And shall we follow the notions, theories, ideas and
          folly of men, who seek to supersede the wisdom, light and
          paternal care of God our heavenly Father? No, we will not. God is
          our God, "the Lord is our God, the Lord is our Judge, the Lord is
          our King, and he shall rule over us." We do not object to bow the
          knee to God and say, "Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be
          thy name, thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is
          done in heaven:" and we pray that it may be hastened. We
          acknowledge, we bow before, we reverence the name of our heavenly
          Father. That is one thing that we do for God, who causes
          seed-time and harvest, summer and winter, day and night, the God
          who has watched over us and all the myriads of the inhabitants of
          the earth from the time of creation until the present time; the
          God in whose hands are the destinies of the human family
          pertaining to this world and the worlds to come. If God will
          deign to teach, lead and dictate us, we bow with reverence before
          him, and say, "It is the Lord, let him do as seems him good." We
          ask the guidance of the Almighty, we reverentially present
          ourselves before him and we submit to his authority; for his yoke
          is easy and his burden is light.
          What next? Then comes the freedom of man. On the one hand the
          guidance of God, on the other the freedom of man. We ask God to
          dictate us and he does. He has given us a President, Apostles,
          Prophets, Bishops; he has organized his Church in the most
          perfect and harmonious manner. We see these things before us. I
          need not talk about the country that we inhabit, nor about the
          blessings that have been shed abroad among us, rich in comparison
          with those enjoyed by others by whom we are surrounded. These
          things are patent to all intelligent men, and surprise is
          frequently expressed at our improvements and at the wisdom and
          intelligence that have governed, managed and controlled our
          affairs; they do not know where they came from. We do--they come
          from God through the medium of his servants.
          What next? God having given us a President inspired by his Holy
          Spirit, we are required to vote for him--will we have him or will
          we reject him? We lift up our hands and say, "Yes, we will
          receive him." The world say this is despotism, being governed by
          one man. Is it despotism for every man and every woman to have a
          voice in the selection of those who rule over them.? Is that
          despotism, tyranny or oppression? If it is I do not know what the
          terms mean. There are no people on the face of the earth to-day
          who have to undergo so severe a criticism as the President and
          Priesthood of this Church before the people, and why is it that
          the people vote unanimously for them? "Well," say the world,
          "there is a kind of influence, we hardly know what, we wish it
          did not exist, for we do not like this one man power." I know you
          do not, for it is one thousand men, ten thousand men power, it is
          the power of the kingdom of God on the earth, and the power of
          God united with it, that is what it is. As I have already said,
          it is not only the President of the church who has to undergo
          this test, but the Twelve, the Seventies, and all the presiding
          officers of the Church have to go through the same ordeal.
          I will now go back to my text. I have been a long way from it,
          but you know it is usual to preach from the text. I have been
          from mine awhile, now I am coming back to it. Jesus says, "Take
          my yoke upon you and learn of me, for I am meek and lowly of
          heart, and you shall find rest to your souls." What was the yoke
          placed upon the followers of Jesus? Precisely the same as that
          placed upon you. What did he tell his disciples to do? To go
          forth and baptize the people in the name of the Father, Son and
          Holy Ghost, and it was promised that certain signs should follow
          them that believed. In his name they should cast out devils,
          speak with new tongues if they drank any deadly thing it should
          not hurt them, and if they laid hands on the sick they should
          recover. The word was--"Go forth in my name and with my
          authority, and my spirit shall accompany you. And it did, and the
          people became one in faith, doctrine and principle, just as the
          Scriptures say. "Take my yoke upon you." What was it? Said he,
          "Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth; blessed
          are the pure in heart for they shall see God; blessed are they
          that hunger and thirst after righteousness for they shall be
          filled." This was the kind of yoke Jesus put upon them, and this
          is the kind that is put upon you--to love righteousness, keep the
          commands of God, live your religion and obey the principles of
          truth, is this a hard yoke? This is what is required of
          Latter-day Saints. "Take my yoke upon you and learn of me!" And
          how did he do it? He obeyed the will of his Father, and then he
          expected his disciples to obey his will. Said he, "Father, I pray
          for them, that they may be one?--a good deal of this one-man
          power there, was there not? "I pray for them, that they may be
          one, even as the Father and I are one, that they may be one in
          us;" and in his mind, looking to the universal expansion of this
          heavenly principle, said he, "Neither pray I for these alone, but
          for all them that shall believe on me through their word, that
          they all may be one, even as I and the Father are one, that the
          world may know that thou hast sent me." This was the kind of
          principle the Savior taught to his followers, and this is the
          kind that is taught to us.
          Now let me ask is it right for a Methodist to obey the Methodist
          discipline? Yes, or else leave them, he has the privilege to do
          which he pleases. Is it right for a Presbyterian to obey the
          Presbyterian doctrine and principles? Yes, or leave them. Is it
          right for a Roman Catholic to obey their principles? Yes, or
          leave them. Is it right for a Latter-day Saint to obey their
          principles? Yes, or leave them, one of the two. Do not try to
          drag in something else, do not make Methodists of us for
          instance, nor Presbyterians. Do not try to make Catholics of us,
          if you do not like "Mormonism" leave it. That is honest,
          straightforward and upright, and good doctrine, and according to
          the principles which are acknowledged to be correct every where.
          "Well," says one, "I think that things could be improved a
          little." Well then, go out somewhere and make your improvements,
          here is a big continent, go north or south, or where you please.
          Get as many to follow you as you can, and teach them what
          principles you please, and if you can build up a better system
          than ours all right, but do not start it here. This is the kind
          of faith that Paul spoke of when he said, "If thou hast faith
          have it to thyself." If you do not have it to yourselves take as
          many with you as you can get. That is right, the world is open,
          plenty of room in every direction, go and try your hand and see
          how you will succeed.
          The same principle is true in relation to other things as well as
          to religion. I might apply it to things political. Some people
          say, "You folks always vote together," we would be poor coots if
          we did not, and just as bad as the rest of you. Some folks here,
          a short time ago, got up a little political operation, and tried
          how it would answer to run one against another; but it did not
          work well and they had to quit. We believe in oneness, and our
          outside friends say, "We do not." Yes you do, y-e-s y-o-u d-o.
          Now all you gentlemen who go in for General Grant would you not
          like to elect him? Yes you would, and you will use all the
          influence that you have to do so, and if he is not elected it
          will be because you can not do it, because you have not influence
          enough to elect him. On the other hand, you who are in favor of
          Horace Greeley, how you would like to have him elected, would you
          not? Yes, you would. And will you not get all to vote for him
          that you possibly can? Yes, and if all do not vote for him it
          will not be your fault. Well, if the people do not vote as we
          want them it will not be our fault, and the only difference, in
          this respect, between you and President Young is, that he has a
          little more influence than you, therefore do not grunt about it,
          these things are fair and straightforward. When men talk about
          oppression they talk about what they do not understand, and the
          same when they talk about the one-man power and the bondage of
          the people. Is it not horrible bondage for the whole people to
          have the privilege of voting for whom they please? Terrible, let
          us get out of it, shall we not, and go somewhere where they will
          not let us do as we please, and have some of that liberty that
          would put shackles upon us, and bind us down? But we Latter-day
          Saints do not want that, we want to be delivered from that, and
          to walk according to the light of truth. Well, let us take the
          yoke of Christ upon us, and learn of him, and keep the
          commandments of God. And if we vote for a Bishop somewhere over
          yonder, let us sustain him as long as he is in office, and if he
          does not do what is right we will vote him out. And if we have
          Presidents or Apostles or anybody that we do not like, let us
          vote them out, and be free men, and cultivate and cherish in our
          bosoms the principles of liberty. But let us be careful that we
          do not grieve the Spirit of the Lord, and while we are looking at
          these things let us look at our own eternal interests, and lean
          upon God for wisdom and instruction, that his Spirit may lead us
          in the paths of life, that we may comprehend true principles, and
          be one as Jesus was and is one with the Father.
          May God help us to be faithful, in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 /
          Brigham Young, October 9, 1872
                           Brigham Young, October 9, 1872
            Delivered at the 42nd Semi-Annual Conference, Salt Lake City,
                                  October 9, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                                 THE ORDER OF ENOCH.
          Suppose we should examine a city in a stake of Zion conducted
          after the order of Enoch! We would like to look, for a few
          moments, upon the facts as they would exist. If a people were
          gathered together, were they many or few, who would follow out
          the instructions given them in the Bible and in the other
          revelations that we have, they would have to be very obedient,
          and probably many would feel to say, "I wish to manage my own
          affairs, I wish to dictate myself, I wish to govern and control
          my labor, I can not submit to have anybody else dictate me. This
          is servitude, and is nothing more nor less than slavery!" I
          suppose there are some who would feel thus. When I look at the
          Latter-day Saints I think how independent they are. They have
          been very independent, there is no question of it. When they have
          heard the Gospel, though, perhaps, in the flood of persecution,
          and the finger of scorn pointed towards them, they have said,
          "The Gospel is true, and if my friends will not believe it, it
          makes no difference to me, I am independent enough to embrace the
          truth, and to gather out from the midst of Babylon and to make my
          home with the Saints." There are plenty of such people here in
          this house--men and women, old and young. There are young people
          here who have left their parents and every thing they had on the
          face of the earth for the sake of the Gospel. Middle-aged men
          have left their wives and their children, saying, "I am going to
          live according to the plan that has been laid down in the
          Scriptures for the salvation of the human family." This certainly
          exhibits as much independence as mortal beings can manifest, and
          yet we have said we will yield strict obedience to these
          requirements, preparatory to enjoying the glory that the Lord has
          for the Saints. I will ask, Is there liberty in this obedience?
          Yes, and the only plan on the face of the earth for the people to
          gain real liberty is to yield obedience to these simple
          principles. Not but that we should find a great many who do not
          exactly understand how to yield obedience, strictly, to the
          requirements of heaven for their own salvation and exaltation;
          but no person can be exalted in the kingdom of heaven without
          first submitting himself to the rules, regulations, laws and
          ordinances of that kingdom, and being perfectly subject to them
          in every respect. Is this the fat? It is even so. Consequently,
          no person is fit to be a ruler until he can be ruled; no one is
          fit to be the Lord of all until he has submitted himself to be
          servant of all. Does this give the people liberty? It is the only
          thing in the heavens or on the earth that can do so. Where is the
          liberty in subjecting ourselves strictly to the requirements of
          heaven and becoming one in all our operations to build up the
          kingdom of God upon the earth? By strict obedience to these
          requirements, we prove ourselves faithful to our God; and when we
          have passed through all the ordeals necessary, and have proved
          perfectly submissive to all the rules and regulations which give
          life eternal, he then sets us free and crowns us with glory,
          immortality and eternal lives; and there is no other path that we
          can walk in, no other system, no other laws or ordinances by
          which we can gain exaltation, only by submitting ourselves
          perfectly to the requirements of heaven.
          Now suppose we had a little society organized on the plan I
          mentioned at the commencement of my remarks--after the Order of
          Enoch--would we build our houses all alike? No. How should we
          live? I will tell you how I would arrange for a little family,
          say about a thousand persons. I would build houses expressly for
          their convenience in cooking, washing and every department of
          their domestic arrangements. Instead of having every woman
          getting up in the morning and fussing around a cookstove or over
          the fire, cooking a little food for two or three or half a dozen
          persons, or a dozen, as the case may be, she would have nothing
          to do but to go to her work. Let me have my arrangement here, a
          hall in which I can seat five hundred persons to eat; and I have
          my cooking apparatus--ranges and ovens--all prepared. And suppose
          we had a hall a hundred feet long with our cooking room attached
          to this hall; and there is a person at the further end of the
          table and he should telegraph that he wanted a warm beefsteak;
          and this is conveyed to him by a little railway, perhaps under
          the table, and he or she may take her beefsteak. "What do you
          want to take with it?" "A cup of tea, a cup of coffee, a cup of
          milk, piece of toast," or something or other, no matter what they
          call for, it is conveyed to them and they take it, and we can
          seat five hundred at once, and serve them all in a very few
          minutes. And when they have all eaten, the dishes are piled
          together, slipped under the table, and run back to the ones who
          wash them. We could have a few Chinamen to do that if we did not
          want to do it ourselves. Under such a system the women could go
          to work making their bonnets, hats, and clothing, or in the
          factories. I have not time to map it out before you as I wish to.
          But here is our dining room, and adjoining this is our prayer
          room, where we would assemble perhaps five hundred persons at one
          time, and have our prayers in the evening and in the morning.
          When we had our prayers and our breakfast, then each and every
          one to his business. But the inquiry is, in a moment, How are you
          going to get them together? Build your houses just the size you
          want them, whether a hundred feet, fifty feet or five, and have
          them so arranged that you can walk directly from work to dinner.
          "Would you build the houses all alike?" Oh no, if there is any
          one person who has better taste in building than others, and can
          get up more tasteful houses, make your plans and we will put them
          up, and have the greatest variety we can imagine.
          What will we do through the day? Each one go to his work. Here
          are the herdsmen--here are those who look after the sheep--here
          are those who make the butter and the cheese, all at their work
          by themselves. Some for the kanyon, perhaps, or for the plow or
          harvest, no difference what, each and every class is organized,
          and all labor and perform their part.
          Will we have the cows in the city? No. Will we have the pig pens
          in the city? No. Will we have any of our outhouses in the city?
          No. We will have our railways to convey the food to the pig pens,
          and somebody to take care of them. Somebody to gather up the
          scraps at the table, and take them away. Somebody to take the
          feed and feed the cows, and take care of them out of the city.
          Allow any nuisance in the city? No, not any, but everything kept
          as clean and as nice as it is in this tabernacle. Gravel our
          streets, pave our walks, water them, keep them clean and nicely
          swept, and everything neat, nice and sweet. Our houses built
          high, sleep up stairs, have large lodging rooms, keep everybody
          in fresh air, pure and healthy. Work through the day, and when it
          comes evening, instead of going to a theatre, walking the
          streets, riding, or reading novels--these falsehoods got up
          expressly to excite the minds of youth, repair to our room, and
          have our historians, and our different teachers to teach classes
          of old and young, to read the Scriptures to them; to teach them
          history, arithmetic, reading, writing and painting; and have the
          best teachers that can be got to teach our day schools. Half the
          labor necessary to make a people moderately comfortable now,
          would make them independently rich under such a system. Now we
          toil and work and labor, and some of us are so anxious that we
          are sure to start after a load of wood on Saturday so as to
          occupy Sunday in getting home. This would be stopped in our
          community, and when Sunday morning came every child would be
          required to go to the school room, and parents to go to meeting
          or Sunday school; and not get into their wagons or carriages, or
          on the railroads, or lounge around reading novels; they would be
          required to go to meeting, to read the Scriptures, to pray and
          cultivate their minds. The youth would have a good education,
          they would receive all the learning that could be given to mortal
          beings; and after they had studied the best books that could be
          got hold of, they would still have the advantage of the rest of
          the world, for they would be taught in and have a knowledge of
          the things of God.
          Bring up our children in this way and they would be trained to
          love the truth. Teach them honesty, virtue and prudence, and we
          should not see the waste around that now is witnessed. The
          Latter-day Saints waste enough to make a poor people comfortable.
          Shall I mention one or two instances? I will mention this one
          thing any way, with regard to our paper mill. Can you get the
          Latter-day Saints to save their rags? No, they will make them and
          throw them out of doors. Is there a family in this community but
          what are too well off in their own estimation to take care of
          paper rags? I think a good many of them would rather steal their
          beef and what they want than stoop to pick up paper rags to make
          paper to print our paper on. Not all would do this, but a few;
          and the majority are so well off that they have not that prudence
          which belongs to Saints; and I feel sometimes a little irritated,
          and inclined to scold about it, when I see women who were brought
          up without a shoe to their foot, or a second frock to their back
          perhaps, and who lived until they were young women in this style,
          without ever stepping on to an inch of carpet in their lives, and
          they know no more how to treat a carpet than pigs do. Do they
          know how to treat fine furniture? No, they do not; but they will
          waste, waste--their clothing, their carpets and their furniture.
          I hear them say sometimes, "Why, I have had this three years, or
          five years." If my grandmother could have got an article such as
          you wear, she would have kept it for her daughters from
          generation to generation, and it would have been good. But now,
          our young women waste, waste.
          This is finding fault, and I wish I could hurt your feelings
          enough to make you think of it when you get home. If I could make
          you a little mad, when you get home if you see a pretty good
          piece of carpet thrown out of doors you will go, perhaps, and
          shake it and lay it up, thinking that it may be serviceable to
          somebody or other; and if you cannot do anything else with it,
          give it to somebody who has not a bed to lie upon, to put under
          them to help to make a bed.
          If we could see such a society organized as I have mentioned, you
          would see none of this waste. You would see a people all
          attending to their business, having the most improved machinery
          for making cloth, and doing every kind of housework, farming, all
          mechanical operations, in our factories, dairies, orchards and
          vineyards; and possessing every comfort and convenience of life.
          A society like this would never have to buy anything; they would
          make and raise all they would eat, drink and wear, and always
          have something to sell and bring money, to help to increase their
          comfort and independence.
          "Well, but," one would say, "I shall never have the privilege of
          riding again in a carriage in my life." Oh what a pity! Did you
          ever ride in one when you had your own way? No, you never thought
          of such a thing. Thousands and thousands of Latter-day Saints
          never expect to own a carriage or to ride in one. Would we ride
          in carriages? Yes, we would; we would have them suitable for the
          community, and give them their proper exercise; and if I were
          with you, I would be willing to give others just as much as I
          have myself. And if we have sick, would they want a carriage to
          ride in? Yes, and they would have it too, we would have nice ones
          to carry out the sick, aged and infirm, and give them exercise,
          and give them a good place to sleep in, good food to eat, good
          company to be with them and take care of them.
          Would not this be hard? Yes, I should hope so. If I had the
          privilege and the power, I would not introduce a system for my
          brethren and myself to live under unless it would try our faith.
          I do not want to live without having my faith and patience tried.
          They are pretty well tried. I do not know how many there are who
          would endure what I endure with regard to faith and patience, and
          then be persevering in the midst of it all. But I would not form
          a society, nor ask and individual to go to heaven by breaking all
          the bones in his body, and putting him in a silver basket, and
          then, hitching him to a kite, send him up there. I would not do
          it if I had the power, for if his bones were not broken he would
          jump out of the basket, that is the idea. I see a great many who
          profess to be Latter-day Saints, who would not be contented in
          heaven unless their feelings undergo a great change, and if they
          were there and you wanted to keep them there, you would have to
          break their backs, or they would get out. But we want to see
          nothing of this in this little society. If I had charge of such a
          society as this to which I refer, I would not allow novel
          reading; yet it is in my house, in the houses of my counselors,
          in the houses of these Apostles, these Seventies and High
          Priests, in the houses of the High Council in this city, and in
          other cities, and in the houses of the Bishops, and we permit it;
          yet it is ten thousand times worse than it is for men to come
          here and teach our children the a b c, good morals, and how to
          behave themselves, ten thousand times worse! You let your
          children read novels until they run away, until they get so that
          they do not care--they are reckless, and their mothers are
          reckless, and some of their fathers are reckless, and if you do
          not break their backs and tie them up they will go to hell. That
          is rough, is it not? Well, it is a comparison. You have got to
          check them some way or other, or they will go to destruction.
          They are perfectly crazy. Their actions say, "I want Babylon
          stuck on to me; I want to revel in Babylon; I want everything I
          can think of or desire." If I had the power to do so, I would not
          take such people to heaven. God will not take them there, that I
          am sure of. He will try the faith and patience of this people. I
          would not like to get into a society where there were no trials;
          but I would like to see a society organized to show the
          Latter-day Saints how to build up the kingdom of God.
          Do you think we shall want any lawyers in our society? No, I
          think not. Do you not think they will howl around? Yes, you will
          hear their howls going up morning and evening, bewailing one
          another. They will howl, "We can get no lawsuits here; we cannot
          find anybody that will quarrel with his neighbor. What shall we
          do?" I feel about them as Peter of Russia is said to have felt
          when he was in England. He saw and heard the lawyers pleading at
          a great trial there, and he was asked his opinion concerning
          them. He replied that he had two lawyers in his empire, and when
          he got home he intended to hang one of them. That is about the
          love I have for some lawyers who are always stirring up strife.
          Not but that lawyers are good in their place; but where is their
          place? I cannot find it. It makes me think of what Bissel said to
          Paine in Kirtland. In a lawsuit that had been got up, Bissell was
          pleading for Joseph, and Paine was pleading for an apostate.
          Paine had blackguarded Bissell a good deal. In his plea Bissell
          stopped all at once, and, turning to Mr. Paine, said he: "Mr.
          Paine, do you believe in a devil?" "Yes," said Mr. Paine, who was
          a keen, smart lawyer. Said Bissell, "Where do you think he is?"
          "I do not know." "Do you not think he is in hell?" said Bissel.
          "I suppose he is." "Well," said Bissell, "do you not think he is
          in pain [Paine]?" They almost act to me as if they were in pain.
          They must excuse me if there are any of them here to-day. I
          cannot see the least use on the face of the earth for these
          wicked lawyers who stir up strife. If they would turn merchants,
          cattle breeders, farmers or mechanics, or would build factories,
          they would be useful; but to stir up strife and quarrels, to
          alienate the feelings of neighbors, and to destroy the peace of
          communities, seems to be their only business. For a man to
          understand the law is very excellent, but who is there that
          understands it? They that do and are peacemakers, they are
          legitimate lawyers. There are many lawyers who are very excellent
          men. What is the advice of an honorable gentlemen in the
          profession of the law? "Do not go to law with your neighbor; do
          not be coaxed into a lawsuit, for you will not be benefited by
          it. If you do go to law, you will hate your neighbor, and you
          will finally have to pick some of your neighbors who hoe potatoes
          and corn, who work in the cabinet shop, at the carpenter's bench,
          or at the blacksmith's forge, to settle it for you. You will have
          to pick ten, twelve, eighteen or twenty-four of them, as the case
          may be, to act as a jury, and your case goes before them to
          decide. They are not lawyers, but they understand truth and
          justice, and they have got to judge the case at last." Why not do
          this at first, and say we will arbitrate this case, and we will
          have no lawsuit, and no difficulty with our neighbor, to alienate
          our feelings one from another? This is the way we should do as a
          Would you want doctors? Yes, to set bones. We should want a good
          surgeon for that, or to cut off a limb. But do you want doctors?
          For not much of anything else, let me tell you, only the
          traditions of the people lead them to think so; and here is a
          growing evil in our midst. It will be so in a little time that
          not a woman in all Israel will dare to have a baby unless she can
          have a doctor by her. I will tell you what to do, you ladies,
          when you find your are going to have an increase, go off into
          some country where you cannot call for a doctor, and see if you
          can keep it. I guess you will have it, and I guess it will be all
          right, too. Now the cry is, "Send for a doctor." If you have a
          pain in the head, "Send for a doctor;" if your heel aches, "I
          want a doctor;" "my back aches, and I want a doctor." The study
          and practice of anatomy and surgery are very good; they are
          mechanical, and are frequently needed. Do you not think it is
          necessary to give medicine sometimes? Yes, but I would rather
          have a wife of mine that knows what medicine to give me when I am
          sick, than all the professional doctors in the world. Now let me
          tell you about doctoring, because I am acquainted with it, and
          know just exactly what constitutes a good doctor in physic. It is
          that man or woman who, by revelation, or we may call it intuitive
          inspiration, is capable of administering medicine to assist the
          human system when it is besieged by the enemy called Disease; but
          if they have not that manifestation, they had better let the sick
          person alone. I will tell you why: I can see the faces of this
          congregation, but I do not see two alike; and if I could look
          into your nervous systems and behold the operations of disease,
          from the crowns of your heads to the soles of your feet, I should
          behold the same difference that I see in your physiognomy--there
          would be no two precisely alike. Doctors make experiments, and if
          they find a medicine that will have the desired effect on one
          person, they set it down that it is good for everybody, but it is
          not so, for upon the second person that medicine is administered
          to, seemingly with the same disease, it might produce death. If
          you do not know this, you have not had the experience that I
          have. I say that unless a man or woman who administers medicine
          to assist the human system to overcome disease, understands, and
          has that intuitive knowledge, by the Spirit, that such an article
          is good for that individual at that very time, they had better
          let him alone. Let the sick do without eating, take a little of
          something to cleanse the stomach, bowels and blood, and wait
          patiently, and let Nature have time to gain the advantage over
          the disease. Suppose, for illustration, we draw a line through
          this congregation, and place those on this side where they cannot
          get a doctor, without it is a surgeon, for thirty or fifty years
          to come; and put the other side in a country full of doctors, and
          they think they ought to have them, and this side of the house
          that has no doctor will be able to buy the inheritance of those
          who have doctors, and overrun them, outreach them, and buy them
          up, and finally obliterate them, and they will be lost in the
          masses of those who have no doctors. I know what some say when
          they look at such things, but that is the fact. Ladies and
          gentlemen, you may take any country in the world, I do not care
          where you go, and if they do not employ doctors, you will find
          they will beat communities that employ them, all the time. Who is
          the real doctor? That man who knows by the Spirit of revelation
          what ails an individual, and by the same Spirit knows what
          medicine to administer. That is the real doctor, the others are
          But to the text. We want to see a community organized in which
          every person will be industrious, faithful and prudent. What will
          you do with the children? We will bring them up until they are of
          legal age, then say, "Go where you please. We have given you a
          splendid education, the advantage of all the learning of the day,
          and if you do not wish to stay with the Saints, go where you
          please." What will you do with those who apostatize after having
          entered into covenant and agreement with others that their
          property shall be one, and be in the hands of trustees, and shall
          never be taken out? If any of these parties apostatize, and say
          we wish to withdraw from this community, what will you do with
          them? We will say to them, "Go, and welcome," and if we are
          disposed to give them anything, it is all right. 
          Where are we going to find the greatest difficulty and
          obstruction with regard to this organization? In the purse of the
          rich? No, not by any means. I have got some brethren who are just
          as close, tight and penurious as I am myself, but I would rather
          take any moneyed man in this community, and undertake to manage
          him, than some men who are not worth a dollar in the world. Some
          of this class are too independent. They would say, "I'll go a
          fishing," or "I guess I'll go a riding, where I please." Well, if
          I were to give out word, and say to the community, Send in your
          names, I want to see who are willing to go into an organization
          of this kind, who do you suppose would write to me first? The
          biggest thieves in the community. Do not be shocked at that, any
          of you, whether you are strangers or not, for we have some of the
          meanest men that ever disgraced God's footstool right in the
          midst of the Latter-day Saints. Do not be startled at that,
          because it is true. I have told the people many a time, if they
          want anything done, no matter how mean, they can find men here
          who can do it, if they are to be found on the earth. I can not
          help this. You recollect that Jesus compared the kingdom of
          heaven to a net which gathered all kinds. If our net has not
          gathered all kinds, I wonder where the kinds are that we have not
          got. I say that some of the worst men in the community would be
          the first ones to proffer their names to go into such an
          association. I do not want them there. Is this the fact? Yes it
          is. I understand it exactly. But if such a community could be
          organized, to show the Latter-day Saints how to build up the
          kingdom of heaven on the earth, I would be glad to see it--would
          not you? If this could be done I want to say to the Latter-day
          Saints, that I have a splendid place, large enough for about five
          hundred or a thousand persons to settle upon, and I would like to
          be the one to make a donation of it, with a good deal more, to
          start the business, to see if we can actually accomplish the
          affair, and show the Latter-day Saints how to build up Zion. Not
          to make a mock of it. Not go and preach the Gospel without purse
          and scrip, and gather up the poor and needy, and have them bring
          Babylon with them. Leave Babylon out of the question. Make our
          own clothing, but do not put seventeen or twenty-one yards in a
          single dress, neither be attired so as to look like a camel. It
          is not comely, it does not belong to sensible people, nor to any
          people who wish to carry themselves justly and correctly, before
          the heavens and intelligent men.
                 If the ladies want silks, we have the mulberry here of
          all kinds; we have the silkworm eggs here, and we have made the
          silk. Go to work now and raise worms, and wind the silk, and
          weave it and make all the satin ribbons you wish for. We have men
          and women here, who did nothing all their lives before they came
          here but weave satin ribbons and satin cloth. This is their
          business, they know how to get it up. If you will raise the silk,
          dress yourselves just as beautifully as you please.
          By and by when this people learn the value of the mulberry and
          the silkworm, you will see the women with their few trees in
          their yards and around their lots, and for shade trees in the
          streets; and the children will be picking the leaves and feeding
          the worms, and they will get up silk dresses here like those in
          the east Indies. The silk dresses they make there you can put
          them on and wear them until you are tired of them, and almost
          from generation to generation. We can make them here just as
          good. And we can have coats and vests and pants made of our
          home-grown material, which a man would wear for his best suit,
          and hand down to his posterity. When we have learned the worth of
          silk we will make it and use it instead of linen. We have a
          splendid country for raising silk, but not a good country to
          raise flax in; splendid for raising wool, grain, fruit,
          vegetables, cattle, milk, butter and cheese, and here we are
          importing our cheese. We ought to be making cheese by the
          hundreds of tons. We ought to export it in quantities; but
          instead of that we are sending to the States for it.
          Where are your cows? Have you taken care of them? If you see a
          community organized as they should be, they will take care of
          their calves; they will have something to feed them on in the
          winter, and they will take care of their stock and not let it
          perish. What a sin it is to the Latter-day Saints, if they did
          but know it, to abuse their stock--their cattle, milch cows and
          horses! Through the summer they will work and use them, and in
          the winter turn them out to live or die as they can, taking no
          care of that which God has given them. Were it not for the
          ignorance of the people, the Lord would curse them for such
          We ought to learn some of these facts, and try to shape our lives
          so as to be useful. Let the men make their lives useful. Let the
          women make their lives useful. Mothers, teach your daughters how
          to keep house, and not how to spend everything they can get hold
          of. I will just say a few words on this subject. We have hundreds
          of young men here who dare not take girls for wives. Why? Because
          the very first thing, they want a horse and buggy, and a piano;
          they want somebody to come every day to give them lessons on the
          piano; they want two hired girls and a mansion, so that they can
          entertain company, and the boys are afraid to marry them. Now
          mothers, teach your girls better things than these. What are the
          facts in the case? If you had been brought up to know what
          property--fine furniture, carpets, and so on, was worth, you
          would take care of it, and be prudent in the use of it, and teach
          your girls to take care, instead of wasting it. Do you believe
          it? This does not hit all, but too many. I wish you would hearken
          to these things. I am taking up the time, and not giving to
          others the opportunity to address you. We have not said what we
          want to say to the Latter-day Saints. We ought to have a house
          four times as large as this, and we ought to fill it; and we
          ought to sit together not only four days, but a week and perhaps
          two weeks, and leave home at home, leave Babylon in
          Babylon--leave everything and come here to worship the living
          God, and learn of his ways, that we may walk in his paths. This
          is our duty, and what we should do. But there are so many who can
          hardly spend time to go to Conference. They have so much business
          on hand, so many cattle to take care of; they have money to let
          out, or money borrow; they have men to see to, or something or
          other, and it seems as if the affections of the people are
          hankering after the things of this world too much, too much!
          Stop, Latter-day Saints, and reckon with yourselves, and find
          whether you are actually in the path of obedience to the
          requirements of heaven or not. Some suppose that they are serving
          God and are on the road to eternal life, but many will find they
          are mistaken if they are not careful. We had better reckon with
          ourselves and look over our accounts, and see how we stand before
          the lord. See if we are doing good, if we are bestowing our
          substance on the poor, that they may have food to eat and
          habitations to dwell in, and be made comfortable: see if we are
          sending our means for the poor in foreign lands, and aiding to
          send the Elders to preach to the nations and gather up the people
          and make them happy and comfortable. Instead of doing this I fear
          that many are wandering away from the commandments of the Lord.
          "O fools, and slow of heart to believe!" We can get rich a great
          deal quicker by serving God than by serving ourselves, do a great
          deal better, and do a great deal more good. The earth is the
          Lord's and the fullness thereof. He is anxious, and is waiting
          with extended arms and hands, comparatively, to pour the wealth
          of the world into the laps of the Latter-day Saints, if they will
          not give it away to their enemies. But now, just as soon as
          anything is given to the Latter-day Saints they are looking from
          east to west, and from north to south, to see where they can
          strew that that God gives them among their enemies--those who
          spurn the things of God, and would destroy his kingdom from the
          earth. I say, let the Lord keep us poor rather than forsake our
          religion and turn away from it! Why can not a man serve God with
          his pockets full of greenbacks, and not lust after them one
          particle? If he can not do it, he is lacking in wisdom, faith,
          and knowledge, and does not understand God an his ways. The
          heavens and the earth are full of blessings for the people. To
          whom do they belong? To our Father in heaven, and he wishes to
          bestow them upon his children when they can receive and dispose
          of them to his name's glory.
          We shall have to stop here. We are going to adjourn our
          Conference, though we have not said half what we wish to say to
          you and to ourselves, for we want to be co-workers together. Now
          let me say to the First Presidency, to the Apostles, to all the
          Bishops in Israel, and to every quorum, and especially to those
          who are presiding officers, Set that example before your wives
          and your children, before your neighbors and this people, that
          you can say: "Follow me, as I follow Christ." When we do this,
          all is right, and our consciences are clear.
          God bless you.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 / Orson
          Pratt, November 24, 1972
                           Orson Pratt, November 24, 1972
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER ORSON PRATT,
            Delivered in the 13th Ward Assembly Rooms, November 24, 1972.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                             TRIUMPH OF LIGHT AND TRUTH.
          I have, through upwards of forty years' experience in the public
          ministry, learned some few lessons in regard to public speaking.
          In the first place I know that the wisdom of man avails but very
          little, and that our own judgment, thoughts and reflections are
          not what the Lord requires; but he does require, and has
          required, ever since the rise of this Church, that his servants
          should speak by the power of the Holy Ghost. A revelation given
          to the Elders of this Church in the year 1831, says, "My servants
          shall be sent forth to the east and to the west, and to the north
          and to the south, and they shall lift up their voices and speak
          and prophecy, as seemeth me good; but if you receive not the
          Spirit you shall not teach." This is a commandment that the Lord
          gave to his servants over forty years ago. I have seen a few
          times from the commencement of my ministry, when my mind seemed
          to be entirely closed up, and when what few words I could stammer
          forth before a congregation, were altogether unsatisfactory to my
          own mind, and I presume to those who heard me. But I do feel
          thankful to God that latterly, from year to year, he has favored
          me with a liberty of utterance and with the power and gift of the
          Holy Ghost. I acknowledge his hand in this, for I know it has
          come from him, and having experienced the two conditions of mind
          I know the difference. I know that, not only as public speakers,
          but as individual members of the Church of the living God, there
          are many things pertaining to our everyday duties, which if we
          clearly understood by the light of the Spirit, we would escape
          many things which cause unhappiness. It is the want of clearly
          understanding the will of the Lord under all circumstances that
          causes us to fall into many of the evils that we pass through in
          life. I can look back on my past life and can speak from
          experience in these matters. I can remember many times when, if I
          had been guided by the Spirit of the Lord in regard to temporal
          matters, it would have been well with me; but not altogether
          understanding what the mind of the Spirit was, the course I have
          taken at times has been very disadvantageous to me. I will relate
          one circumstance of this kind as a sample. Some few years ago, I
          had a few hundred dollars in goods and property, and I expended
          all that I had in a store. Not one of these co-operative stores,
          but in a store kept at Fillmore. Being requested by the merchants
          in that place to purchase a bill of goods for them, and to give
          my own note until they could settle it; and being anxious that
          their business should go on and prosper, I was foolish enough to
          do as they wished, by which I brought myself into great
          difficulties, and lost over two thousand dollars by the
          transaction. I had the bill of goods to pay for, and lost all I
          put in besides. If I had understood the teachings of the
          Spirit--and I did have some impressions in relation to the
          matter, but if I had fully understood them I should not have
          fallen into these unpleasant circumstances. I have no doubt that
          there are many others among the people of God, who can see where
          they have erred, because they did not have the Spirit of God upon
          them at the time.
          I can see, also, many times when the Spirit of the Lord whispered
          to me, and I scarcely knew whether it was my own thoughts and
          imaginations or whether it was the revelations of the Spirit; yet
          it seemed to be the Spirit of the Lord, and I followed the
          teachings, and was prospered in so doing.
          If we, as a people, would lie up to our privileges, how many
          difficulties might be avoided! How many Latter-day Saints would
          constantly live in the light of revelation! This puts me in mind
          of a text which I have often heard quoted, but I do not know that
          I have said much in relation to it. Neither do I know where it is
          recorded, but I think it is somewhere in the writings of Solomon.
          The passage I refer to says that there is a spirit in man and the
          Spirit or candle of the Lord, I do not remember which, giveth it
          understanding. The idea is that in these tabernacles of ours we
          have an intelligent spirit which God has placed there, and he has
          ordained that the Spirit of the Lord shall light up these human
          spirits of ours, that we may follow in the paths of light, truth
          and righteousness and obtain eternal life.
          This text also puts me in mind of one that is recorded somewhere
          in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, in which the Lord,
          speaking directly to this people, says that the word of the Lord
          is truth, and whatsoever is truth is light, and whatsoever is
          light is Spirit, even the Spirit of Jesus Christ, and the spirit
          giveth light to every man that cometh into the world; and the
          Spirit enlighteneth every man through the world that hearkeneth
          to the voice of the Spirit. I can not tell you on what page nor
          in what section of the Book of Covenants this can be found; but
          you who are in the habit of reading that book will find these
          words, as I have quoted them. "Whatsoever is truth is light,
          whatsoever is light is spirit," consequently, if we could always
          follow in the light, instead of following in the channel of
          darkness, we would always follow in the path that would lead to
          peace and happiness, and we would avoid ten thousand difficulties
          which beset our pathway.
          Another revelation that agrees with this will be found in the
          Book of Doctrine and Covenants, in a very lengthy communication
          made by the Lord to this Church, which shows very plainly that
          light is the principle and law by which everything is governed. I
          will quote the revelation as near as I can remember it. Speaking
          of his presence, he says, "As he is in the sun, and is the light
          thereof, and the power thereof by which it is governed; and as he
          is also in the moon, and is the light and the power thereof; and
          in the stars; and the light which shineth is the same light which
          quickeneth your eyes, which is the same light which quickeneth
          your understandings, the light which is in all things, and which
          giveth life to all things, and which is the law by which all
          things are governed, even the power of God who sits upon his
          throne, who is in the bosom of eternity, who is in the midst of
          all things, which light proceedeth forth from his presence to
          fill the immensity of space." When we put all these texts
          together, we find that this great principle of light which should
          enlighten the mind of man, and by which he should be led
          continually, is something that is not confined to one little part
          of space; it not only lights the sun, moon and stars and all the
          heavenly bodies, but it is in and surrounds all things, and gives
          life to all things.
          Here is something that we do not perfectly understand. The
          principle of life by which we are able to move, think and reason;
          the principle of motion and of power is a principle of light. And
          there seems to be a connection or relation between these
          principles that govern the motion of living beings and the light
          that proceeds forth from the sun. But we do not understand that
          relation. God has told us that it is the law by which everything
          is governed; and we can not find a law throughout universal
          space, but what light has something to do with it. But we do not
          know in all cases how it operates. We do not know, for instance,
          how light operates in making a blade of grass grow out of the
          earth. We can not understand how particle comes to its particle,
          how it is organized in a certain form, and finally produces the
          complete blade of grass. We do not know how this is carried on,
          but the Lord has told us that it is done by the principle of
          light. We do not know, either, how it is that we can communicate
          with different and distinct parts of the earth almost
          instantaneously through the medium of the electric wires. We
          understand that this phenomenon exists, but we do not know the
          cause of it; if we did we should find, according to the
          revelation which God has given, that it is accomplished through
          the medium of light. How that light operates we do not know, God
          has not revealed that. He has only told us that light is the
          cause and the power by which everything is governed.
          We see a stone, and when we hold it in our hands and let go of
          it, it does not stand still, neither does it fall upwards,
          neither does it go horizontally, but it falls downwards to the
          surface of the earth. We have named this gravitation. But what is
          the cause? No one knows. No person can tell why that stone does
          not stand still. We see it fall and we see all terrestrial bodies
          fall to the surface of the earth, but we cannot tell why this is
          so. The cause, however, is light, but how that light operates we
          do not know.
          We see the sun shine, and we know that it illuminates the face of
          this world and of many other worlds. Its light proceeds forth
          from that centre and radiates to immense distances. We see all
          this, but what connection is there between this and the
          understanding or light that is in man, that assist him in his
          power of thought and motion? What connection is there between the
          shining of that light and the light that is within us? We do not
          know, and yet God has said that the light which proceeds forth
          from these heavenly bodies is the same light that quickens the
          understanding of man and that gives life to all things. We do not
          understand all these things which God has spoken and given. For
          instance we see a candle set on a table; we apply a match to
          that, and immediately there is light where before existed
          darkness. Chemists tell us that this is a chemical operation;
          that the light proceeds not from the tallow, but from a principle
          called oxygen--a certain portion of the atmospheric air which we
          breathe; that that principle has a great tendency to unite with
          the materials of the candle, and in so doing it gives out its
          light. But how this light is produced and sustained by a
          combination of the elements of the candle and the oxygen of the
          atmosphere we do not know, only we know that it is the power of
          God, we know that it is the light which is in all things. But
          what I term knowledge, and what we should all term knowledge, is
          to understand not only the phenomena but the cause of these
          things. We endeavor to distinguish between the natural and the
          spiritual light, but is there any such thing as drawing a line of
          distinction between the two? Who can do it? Where is the man or
          philosopher that can tell the distinction, and where one ends and
          the other begins? They can not do it. If we take the revelation
          which God has given we learn that there is no difference; it is
          the same light that produces both effects, and the light which
          darts along the electric wire is the same as that which comes
          from the distant bodies of the universe, only it has a different
          name, and operates a little differently. The time will come when
          the Latter-day Saints, if faithful, will have an understanding of
          all these things. We have made a commencement in the right
          channel; we have placed ourselves in an attitude to learn the
          first principles in this great divine university called the
          kingdom of God. God has given us his Holy Spirit, which is the
          commencement of knowledge, light and intelligence. But unless we
          walk according to the light and the mind of that Spirit, wherein
          are we benefited? We are not benefited at all. "If my words abide
          in you," says Jesus, "you shall ask whatever you will, and it
          shall be given unto you." This promise is given unto every
          Latter-day Saint. The Book of Mormon, however, qualifies this
          saying a little. It says, "Whatsoever we ask in faith, which is
          right, believing that we shall receive, it shall be given unto
          us." These words--"which is right"--greatly qualify the promise.
          The Lord has not bound himself by promise to give to the children
          of men whatsoever they ask for, unless it is absolutely right
          that they should ask for that thing. If what we ask for in faith
          is right, then he is bound.
          This puts me in mind of a passage in the revelations contained in
          the Book of Doctrine and Covenants in relation to prayer. He
          says, "You shall receive whatever you ask for in prayer which it
          is expedient for you to receive; but if any among you shall ask
          for that which it is not expedient for him to receive it shall
          turn to his condemnation." We must, in the first place, try to
          have light enough to discern what is right or expedient for us;
          in the second place, to ask God the Eternal Father in the name of
          his son Jesus Christ, for the things which we know he is willing
          to bestow upon us. Then we can ask in faith, for we have the
          promise that we shall receive.
          The great difficulty with me, and I presume it is also the
          experience of almost every man and woman in the Church of the
          living God, is, we are not so faithful as some of the servants of
          God have been in former days. Some of them were so faithful that
          they lived constantly in the light of revelation. Their minds
          were opened to it, and scarcely a thing could transpire but what
          they understood it beforehand. They did not need the news or
          intelligence to be brought to them from a distance, but there was
          a spirit within them and the candle of the Lord gave that spirit
          understanding in regard to things that were transpiring thousands
          of miles distant. They lived for this; they walked before the
          Lord so faithfully that they were entitled to know, not only
          things that were present with and that would benefit themselves
          and the people among whom they dwelt, but also things in the
          future--ages and ages to come were opened up to their minds, and
          their minds comprehended them by permitting this candle of the
          Lord to shine upon and illuminate them.
          It is my most earnest desire to live so as to discern under every
          condition and circumstance in life precisely what would be most
          pleasing in the sight of God for me to do, and when I comprehend
          this I can act as a person who does not grope in the dark, like
          the blind man who gropes for the wall; but if I live for it, the
          path in which I should walk will be plain, the Spirit of God
          being as it were a lamp to my feet, and my guide and instructor
          by day and by night. Do you not desire Latter-day Saints to be
          instructed in this way? Every honest-hearted person will answer
          yes. Every one who hungers and thirsts after righteousness, and
          who desires eternal life will acknowledge that he does desire to
          be thus guided and led.
          But now having spoken so much about the benefits of this light,
          and how good it would be to be continually guided and instructed
          by the spirit of revelation, there is another thing connected
          with it which we perhaps do not all fully understand. Supposing a
          person were thus guided all the time, from waking in the morning
          until they retired to rest at night; and then when asleep if his
          dreams were given by the same spirit, and this should be the
          uninterrupted condition of an individual, I ask, where would be
          his trials? This would lead us to ask, Is it not absolutely
          necessary that God should in some measure, withhold even from
          those who walk before him in purity and integrity, a portion of
          his Spirit, that they may prove to themselves, their families and
          neighbors, and to the heavens whether they are full of integrity
          even in times when they have not so much of the Spirit to guide
          and influence them? I think that this is really necessary,
          consequently I do not know that we have any reason to complain of
          the darkness which occasionally hovers over the mind. I recollect
          that Lehi had a very great and important dream communicated to
          him, and his son Nephi had the same renewed to him. While Lehi
          was on his way to this country he dreamed that he wandered many
          hours in darkness; that there was a certain rod of iron,
          notwithstanding this darkness that seemed to gather around him,
          on which the old man leaned steadfastly. So great was the
          darkness that he was fearful he should lose his way if he let go
          the rod of iron; but he clung to it, and continued to wander on
          until, by and by, he was brought out into a large and spacious
          field, and he also was brought out to a place where it was
          lighter, and he saw a certain tree which bore very precious
          fruit. And he went forth and partook of the fruit of his tree,
          which was the most precious and desirable of any fruit that he
          had ever tasted; and it seemed to enlighten him and fill him with
          joy and happiness. Lehi was a good old man--a man who had been
          raised up as a great prophet in the midst of Jerusalem. He had
          prophesied in the midst of all that wickedness which surrounded
          the Jews; and they sought to take away his life, because of his
          prophecy. But not withstanding this gift of prophecy, and the
          gifts of the Spirit which he enjoyed, the Lord showed him by this
          dream that there would be seasons of darkness through which he
          would have to pass, and that even then there was a guide. If he
          did not all the time have the Spirit of God upon him to any great
          extent, there was the word of God, represented by an iron rod, to
          guide him; and if he would hold fast to that in his hours of
          darkness and trial, when everything seemed to go against him, and
          not sever himself therefrom, it would finally bring him where he
          could partake of the fruit of the precious tree--the Tree of
          Life. Consequently I am not so sure, that it is intended for men
          of God to enjoy all the time a great measure of his Spirit. 
          I will refer to another example--one that I have often quoted. It
          will be found in the "Pearl of Great Price." It is a revelation
          that was given renewedly to Joseph Smith, concerning what God
          revealed to Moses, before he was permitted to go down and be a
          deliverer to the children of Israel. The Lord severely tried
          Moses, as well as enlightened him. He had to pass through both
          conditions of experience--a condition of great light, truth,
          knowledge and understanding in the ways of God, and a condition
          of darkness and great temptation. Hence we find that on a certain
          occasion God called Moses up into a very high mount, where he
          bowed down before the Lord and cried mightily unto him, and the
          Lord heard his prayer, and the glory of God descended and rested
          upon him, and he beheld many great and wonderful things. His mind
          was opened to things that he never had understood before--things
          that were great and marvellous. Yet the Lord showed him but very
          few of his works, for he told Moses on that occasion that no man
          could behold all his works except he beheld all his glory; and no
          man could behold all his glory and afterwards remain in the
          flesh. To behold all the works of God was more than any mortal
          man could endure.
           Moses, after receiving this remarkable vision, had such great
          knowledge and intelligence unfolded unto him that he marveled
          exceedingly, and while gazing upon the works of God the Spirit of
          God withdrew from him, and he was left unto himself, and he fell
          to the earth, for his natural strength departed from him. "Now,"
          said Moses, " I know for this once that man is nothing, which
          thing I never had supposed." But he had learned by the contrast
          that man, in and of himself, was as nothing, and comparatively
          speaking, less than the dust of the earth, which moves hither and
          thither by the command of the great God; but that man, being an
          agent unto himself, and God not having a disposition to control
          this agent contrary to certain laws and principles, when this
          agent was left to himself he found that he was nothing. The Lord
          then permitted Satan to appear in a personal form and visit this
          great man of God. Here, now, was a contest. Satan came up before
          Moses, not in all his ugliness and maliciousness, but assuming
          the form of an angel of light. Satan said, "Moses, son of man,
          worship me!" Moses looked upon Satan and said, "Who art thou,
          that I should worship thee? For I could not look upon God except
          his glory should come upon me, but I can look upon thee as a
          natural man." Here was the difference. He could look upon this
          individual who came to him pretending to be an angel of goodness
          and light, and have none of the glorious feelings that he had
          before. Hence said Moses, "I can discern the difference between
          God and thee. Get thee hence, Satan!" Satan did not feel disposed
          to give upon the attack, and he commanded him again to worship
          him, and he exerted a great power and the earth shook and
          trembled, and Moses was filled with fear and trembling, but he
          nevertheless called upon God, for he was convinced in his own
          mind that his visitor was one from the infernal regions, a
          personage of darkness, and he felt to rebuke him, and in his fear
          he saw, the bitterness of hell, that is, the fear and trembling
          that came upon him, and the darkness that surrounded him, gave
          him an experience of the bitterness and misery of those who are
          in torment. After a certain period of time in which Satan tried
          to overpower him, Moses gained strength from God, and commanded
          Satan, in the name of Jesus Christ, to depart, and he departed.
          Moses then received strength, and he continued to call upon God,
          and the glory of God again rested upon him, so that he beheld the
          works of the Creator, and he began to inquire very diligently
          concerning the earth upon which he dwelt. The Lord saw proper on
          that occasion, after severely testing Moses with the opposite
          power, to show to him the whole earth. Not merely portions of its
          surface, but he showed the whole of the inside as well as the
          outside, for the revelation says, "There was not a particle of it
          which he did not behold, discerning it by the Spirit of God." If
          we go to the top of a very high mountain, we can only behold a
          very limited landscape, for the most distant portions of our view
          are generally obscured by the vapors of the earth or by smoke, so
          that we only see a dim outline. But here was a man of God, having
          the Spirit of God lighting up his mind to that degree that he
          could see every particle of the earth. This was a wonderful
          development of the mind and powers of man. I do not suppose that
          the mind of Moses was constituted any different from the minds of
          the congregation now before me; every one of us has the same kind
          of human spirit that he had. Though not called with the same
          calling, yet we have the same kind of spirit, and are the
          children of the same Father. Now if Moses had within him a
          certain undeveloped principle, which for the space of some eighty
          years he did not know that he possessed, until God on that
          occasion lighted it up and brought it forth, so that he was
          capable not only of looking upon the surface of our globe, but of
          looking into its interior, I do not know why each and every one
          of those now present before me have not the same faculty and
          gift, if it were only developed. 
          I bring up these things to show how God deals with his
          children--his sons and daughters--by lighting up the mind, and
          then leaving them awhile in darkness. It is not likely that many
          of us, with the little experience that we have, could resist such
          great temptations as Moses did. If such powers were brought to
          bear on our minds they might overthrow and destroy us, but he was
          prepared beforehand; he had beheld the glory of God, and had
          received strength from the heavens, consequently when the
          opposite powers assailed him, his previous experience
          strengthened him, and he held fast to the rod of iron
          notwithstanding the darkness he had to contend with.
          When Moses received this great light and saw the whole earth, he
          felt a very great anxiety to know how the earth was formed. It
          would be very natural for a man suddenly endowed with the power
          to behold every particle of the earth, to ask, "How was this
          made?" and Moses said, "Be merciful unto thy servant, O God, and
          show me concerning the heavens and the earth, and then thy
          servant will be content." The Lord told Moses that there were
          many heavens, and many worlds that had passed away by his power,
          and that as one heaven and one earth should pass away, even so
          should another come, and there was no end to his works and to his
          words. Then Moses limited his desires.
          Here we see something asked of the Lord by Moses that was no
          expedient, it was not wisdom in the Lord to reveal it to him, he
          could not know all about the many heavens. Then he asked the
          Lord, saying, "Show unto thy servant concerning this earth and
          this heaven, then will thy servant be content." The Lord then
          gave him what we term the Book of Genesis, one of the first books
          of Moses, telling him, in answer to his prayer, how he formed and
          crated this earth and this heaven, and the various stages
          thereof, as performed in the several days, until on the sixth and
          seventh it was completed. This, according to new revelation
          contained in the "Pearl of Great Price," is the way Moses
          obtained a knowledge of the history of this creation. Other men,
          before his day, also obtained it. Abraham, who lived several
          hundred years before Moses, had the Urim and Thummim, which the
          Lord God gave unto him in the land of Chaldea, and by the aid of
          this instrument he also obtained a knowledge of the history of
          this creation, and not only of this, but of many others, God also
          giving the names of many of them, such as Kolob and others, which
          it is not necessary for me to repeat. But The Lord, in various
          ages, has manifested these great things to the children of men.
          But all these great Prophets, Seers and Revelators had to
          experience their seasons of darkness and trial, and had to show
          their integrity before God in the midst of the difficulties they
          had to encounter. Shall the Latter-day Saints despond, then,
          because they may have seasons of darkness, and may be brought
          into trials and difficulties? No! Let us be steadfast, holding
          fast to the rod of iron--the word of God--and to our honesty,
          integrity and uprightness, that God may be well pleased with us
          whether we have much or little of the Spirit. I do not know how
          we could have many trials, if we were all the time filled with
          the Spirit and continually having revelations.
          This puts me in mind of the experience of our Prophet Joseph, and
          of David Whitmer, Oliver Cowdery and others. You are familiar
          with many things contained in the history of Joseph, about his
          hours of trial. He had some before the Lord permitted him to take
          the plates from the Hill Cumorah. God showed him where those
          plates were, and he was commanded by the angel to go and view
          them. He did so, and when he first saw them he put forth his hand
          to take them. But was he suffered to do so? No. What was the
          reason? He had not had the trials necessary to prove his
          integrity, and this must be proved before he could be entrusted
          with so sacred a treasure. Hence he was told to go and be
          obedient to the Lord, and to come there from time to time, as he
          was commanded by the angel of the Lord; and when the time had
          fully come he was permitted to take them.
          Do you suppose, from the time he saw the plates first, to the day
          when he was permitted to take them, being some four years, that
          he had no temptations, trials, darkness or difficulties to
          grapple with? We are told in his history that, besides the
          glories of heaven that were opened to his mind, the powers of
          darkness were also portrayed before him. The Lord showed him the
          two powers. What for? To give him the experience necessary to
          enable him to discern between that which came from God and that
          which came from the opposite source. He saw, as Moses did, these
          evil beings personally. They were manifested before him in their
          rage, malice and wickedness. He had also many seasons of sorrow,
          tribulation, difficulty and temptation; and when he had proved
          himself before the Heavens, and before the Saints in Paradise who
          once dwelt on this continent, and had shown that he was full of
          integrity, God permitted him to take the plates, and he
          translated the record thereon into the English language.
          Perhaps I have spoken sufficient in relation to these two powers.
          What I have said has been with the design to comfort and
          encourage the Saints, that they may not think, because some are
          tried this way, and some that way, and some another, that
          something has befallen them different to what has taken place
          upon the human family before, and that they are more tried than
          any other individual that has ever been upon the earth. Do not
          think this, Latter-day Saints, but strengthen yourselves in God,
          and in the hour of your trial call upon him, and he will impart
          strength and faith to you, light up your understandings, and
          bring you through victoriously, and your blessings will be still
          greater than before your temptations came upon you.
          By and by the time will come when the vail, which hides this
          earth, and shuts out its inhabitants from the presence of God,
          will be removed. We read this in the Book of Covenants. The earth
          is now shut out from the presence of God, and all the
          inhabitants, and the animal creation, the fowls of the air and
          the fishes of the sea, and everything wherein there is life, all
          are shut out from the presence of God. Because of the fall of the
          great head and being who was to have dominion over this creation,
          it is banished, a vail is let down which hides us from the
          presence of God. This vail or covering will soon be taken away,
          and the earth will roll back again into the presence of God. When
          I speak of the earth's rolling back again, I do not mean that the
          Lord is going to translate it from its present orbit around the
          sun; I do not mean that it is going to be moved from its present
          position, which it has occupied for six thousand years; but I
          mean that the vail which shuts us out from the presence of God
          will be removed.
          Those who are sufficiently pure to abide that day have great
          promises made to them. You will find these promises recorded in
          the Book of Doctrine and Covenants. We are told that when that
          day arrives, God's people, whether those who have died and are
          resurrected, or those who are living on the earth, shall know all
          these things that I have spoken of. They shall know about the
          earth, and all things in, under or around about it, and all the
          power thereof and the materials that enter into its constitution.
          All these things will be open to the mind of man, and it will be
          one of his natural gifts apparently. I say natural, because it
          will be so frequent. That which we call natural is something,
          generally speaking, that takes place all the time, and the
          frequency of the things makes it to us natural. Well, when this
          covering of which I have spoken is removed, the knowledge that
          the people will then have of the mysteries and wonders of
          creation will be such that they will many times be in about the
          same condition that Moses was in during the short interval of
          light and glory that was manifested to him. If that man of God
          could retain his existence as a mortal being after that great
          manifestation of the power of God unto him on that occasion, I do
          not know why the minds of all who are counted worthy to live,
          when the Lord removes the vail, can not be developed the same as
          the mind of Moses was, that they may grasp and comprehend the
          things of God the same as he did. I can not, in my own mind, see
          so much difference, as many people suppose, between the ancients
          and the moderns. I believe that God is willing to bless all his
          children, ancient or modern, if they lie before him worthily.
          We read in Isaiah of a time when a certain people called Zion
          should be clothed upon with the glory of God, and their city be
          lighted up with a cloud by day and the light of a flaming fire by
          night, and they should be so highly favored that, so far as light
          was concerned, they should not need the light of the sun by day,
          nor the moon by night, for the Lord their God would be their
          everlasting light, and the days of their mourning would be ended.
          We also read in the same connection that when that day comes,
          "thy children," speaking of Zion "shall all be righteous;" that
          is, they would be people upon whom and to whom God could manifest
          himself as he did to Moses and others; that the knowledge of God
          would cover the earth as the waters cover the great deep.
          Jeremiah has said that the time would come when the new covenant
          should take its full effect here upon the earth; that there would
          be no more need of ministers and priests to teach the people,
          although there would be need for ordinances to be administered,
          and for the priesthood to administer in other capacities; but so
          far as teaching the people to know the Lord was concerned it
          would be unnecessary. In that day no man would need to say to his
          neighbor, "Know ye the Lord." Why? Because all would know him,
          from the least unto the greatest, for Isaiah says they should all
          be taught of the Lord, all be righteous, all receive revelation
          and visions, all prophecy and dream. That is, God would reveal by
          his Spirit in different ways, at different times and by different
          methods to his people those things that would comfort and build
          them up in their most holy faith.
          When we see the great necessity there is at the present time to
          teach, and see how prone men are to forget that which they are
          taught, we say, they are like him who beholds his natural face in
          a glass and turns away, and straightway forgets what manner of
          man he is. It is just so with regard to teaching the people; they
          need to be stirred up continually, because of the weakness of
          their minds and memories; and naturally viewing this weakness, it
          seems almost impossible to believe that it will ever be
          different, as long as men are in a mortal state. Yet I do not
          look at it in this light. I look for a great change and
          resolution among the inhabitants of our globe. I look for the
          vail to be taken not only from the earth, but from every creature
          of all flesh that dwells upon the face thereof; and all will be
          in the presence of God. God himself will be their God, and they
          will be his people. God himself will wipe away all tears from
          their eyes, and there will be no more death, no more sorrow nor
          crying, for all things will become new, and God will be with his
          people from that time henceforth and forever.
          Does this mean that God will all the time dwell upon the earth?
          No. There will be a connection, and opening between man and God,
          that will bring us into his presence, and whether he shall be far
          distant or near it will make no difference. Here is a principle
          that none of us fully comprehend. We speak oftentimes of going to
          and returning from God, of going to heaven, and so on. I have no
          doubt that many of us will be counted worthy to approach near to
          him so far as distance is concerned. But then, when we come to
          reflect that distance will be comparatively annihilated, between
          God and the worlds he has made, so that it will make no
          difference, as far as his presence is concerned, whether he is
          close by or millions of miles distant--there will be a mutual
          communication between the Creator and his children all the time,
          consequently there will be union and fellowship with him, and
          rejoicing in his presence, though he be in a world far beyond
          Kolob, of which Abraham speaks.
          As an illustration of this principle, let me bring up some
          temporal phenomena here on the earth. A few years ago, when I was
          a boy, no such thing was dreamed of as conversing with our
          neighbors two or three hundred miles distant. And if such a thing
          had been thought of and it had been mentioned, the dreamer would
          have been at once set down as a fanatic or enthusiast, or as one
          beside himself, crazy or weakminded. That was the idea our
          fathers had, and the idea that some of us old men had when we
          were boys. But since that period God has seen proper to inspire
          certain individuals with information and knowledge, to erect
          telegraph poles, and through the medium of wires attached to
          these poles, placed upon non-conductors of electricity, we are
          enabled to converse instantaneously, almost, with the most
          distant parts of the earth; and if there is proper wire
          connection we can send our message to the other side of the globe
          in one or two seconds and get a return as quickly. Is not this
          making neighbors of the nations? So far as this one means of
          communication is concerned, it is quite neighborly. We in Salt
          Lake City can sit down by the side of our warm fires and converse
          with persons sitting by their fires. The people of these two
          cities can talk together, though it is quite expensive as yet to
          do so. Supposing now that it were possible to invent something
          still further, by which we could see our neighbors in London, and
          the people in London could see us in Salt Lake City, then we
          could both converse and see. And if we could do this, do you not
          see that, so far, distance would be almost annihilated?
          Again, suppose that by some medium now unknown to us, we could
          absolutely be able to hear, not by the vibrations of this coarse
          atmosphere of ours, but by the vibrations of some fluid spread
          through space, more refined, operating upon the organs of the
          immortal ear, transferring sounds at an immense distance, say
          millions and millions of miles, conveying them with the rapidity
          of the electric fluid itself, and perhaps with a velocity a
          thousand times greater, then we could both see and hear, and also
          converse with our neighbors at long distances from us; and if
          such means of communication were opened among the different
          nations of the earth, they would all be neighbors.
          Now extend this principle, and let us suppose that there was a
          medium of communication by which immortal beings could see, hear
          and communicate from the earth to the sun, and from the sun to
          the earth; from the earth to Jupiter, and from Jupiter back again
          to the earth; from the sun to the most distant planetary bodies
          of our system, and back again from those bodies to the sun; and
          then from the solar system itself to some of those starry
          spheres, and from one sphere to another, taking in whole groups
          of systems, until finally we had means of communication with all
          the different worlds of the universe, as we have now between Salt
          Lake and London, only through a more refined and perfect medium,
          would it be necessary under these circumstances that our Father
          and God should be directly here on the earth in order for us to
          be with him? Not at all. He could be situated on a world as far
          distant as some of the fixed stars from us, and there he could
          sway his sceptre over millions of worlds and systems, and all of
          them be in his presence, the vail having been removed; while
          those powers that are latent, now as it were, in the mind of
          fallen beings like man, being developed among all the inhabitants
          of these worlds, they could communicate with him and he with
          them. Would it not be said, under these circumstances, that they
          were all in the presence of God? Yes, and it would obviate the
          necessity of travelling and spending millions of years on long
          journeys through space in order to get into his presence.
          I expect that in future ages all these things will be made
          manifest to the children of God. If we are to grow up in light,
          intelligence and truth, and become gods, even the sons of God; if
          we are to be filled with light, understanding and knowledge; if
          we are to understand all things pertaining to our earth and to
          other worlds, then it seems to me that we must approximate very
          nearly to the fullness of the blessings that are now enjoyed by
          him who is our Father and our God. I do not consider that man has
          all of his senses developed here, and because we have not yet
          exercised some of our senses that have slept unknown to us ever
          since our birth, that is no argument that we do not possess such
          senses, no evidence at all. You might take a man that had the
          faculty of seeing in perfection, and if he was born where not a
          glimmer of light ever entered his eye, he would not know that he
          had such a faculty, and you could not by talking instill the idea
          into his mind, he could not comprehend it. He would say, "I have
          the sense of feeling, and the sense of smelling, and the sense of
          hearing, but this sense of seeing that you talk about I have no
          idea of, what is it?" He would have to experience it in order to
          find out what was meant by seeing objects at a distance, defining
          their colors, and so on. But when he looked on the surface of
          nature by the aid of light, when it was once brought to bear upon
          him, what a world of knowledge would rush into his mind, not all
          at once, but by degrees. So it will be with the Saints of God,
          when their latent faculties begin to be developed and brought
          forth, so that they can gaze upon the works of God.
          This great future reward is worth living for, and this is what we
          should seek for, even for the enlightenment of the Spirit. This
          is what we should endeavor to cultivate in all our business
          transactions, and in all our concerns here in life. If we
          cultivate this Spirit, it will increase upon us, and it will grow
          brighter and brighter, until the perfect day, and we shall rise
          by degrees into that high position that God intends for his
          children, to make them gods, to dwell in his presence for ever
          and ever. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 / Orson
          Pratt, December 15, 1872
                           Orson Pratt, December 15, 1872
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER ORSON PRATT,
            Delivered in the 14th Ward Assembly Rooms, Sunday Afternoon.
                                   Dec. 15, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                            PRE-EXISTENCE OF OUR SPIRITS.
          It would have been my choice this afternoon to sit and listen to
          others, but having been requested to address the congregation I
          cheerfully comply, having a desire in my heart that God will pour
          out his Holy Spirit upon me and upon the hearers, so that we may
          be mutually edified. We call ourselves the children of the Most
          High God. It is a term that is Scriptural in its nature, and that
          has been applied to the people of God in all ages. In the hymn
          that was sung, at the opening of this meeting, this subject was
          more fully portrayed, according to the views of the Latter-day
          Saints, than is generally expressed by religious people in the
          world, for I believe that all religious people claim to be, and
          term themselves, the children of God. It may not be amiss to
          investigate, for a little while, the reality of this title, and
          see if we can come to some kind of an understanding in regard to
          our being the sons and daughters of the Most High God. It is said
          by some that we are his sons and daughters only by adoption, or
          through obedience to the Gospel; that we become his sons and his
          daughters, through being born of the water and of the Spirit. Now
          I admit that it is necessary for the human family to be thus
          adopted; there would, however, have been no need of this adoption
          if mankind had never become wicked and corrupt. If there had
          never been any sin in the world, I do not think that adoption
          would have been necessary. According to my views, and I believe,
          according to the views of the Latter-day Saints, and also of the
          ancient Saints, we were at one period legitimately his sons and
          daughters independent of adoption, and this will carry us to the
          first ideas manifested by revelation, in regard to the origin of
          man. Many people suppose, when Adam was placed in the garden of
          Eden, that then the first of the human family originated. I admit
          that that was the origin as far as man's temporal existence here
          on the earth is concerned; but had we no prior existence? Was
          that the beginning of man? Was it, in reality, his origin? This
          is a very important question, and a correct answer thereto would
          certainly be calculated to cheer the hearts of the children of
          men. That man had a secondary origin here on this earth, and was
          place in the Garden of Eden, are Scriptural facts, which we all
          believe; but did not our first parents, and all their descendants
          have an existence, before there was any Garden of Eden on this
          earth? I think it is admitted by the whole Christian world, that
          man is a being compounded of body and spirit, at least all the
          christian societies with which I am acquainted believe this. They
          all believe that within man's body or tabernacle of flesh and
          bones there dwells an immortal spirit. All Christian societies,
          with perhaps very few exceptions, believe that this human spirit,
          which dwells within the tabernacle, will exist after the
          dissolution of the body. There may be some few Christians who
          believe that the spirit is disorganized or dies between the time
          of death and the resurrection. I think this view is entertained
          by some few individuals, but the great mass of the human family
          believe that when this body falls asleep and crumbles back again
          to its mother earth, the spirit still survives as an organized
          being or personage. Some, however, do not believe that the spirit
          is a personage. They think it is something which can not be
          defined, something that has neither the shape nor the properties
          which we give to any kind of material substance. The views of the
          immaterialist are that the spirit occupies no space, and has no
          relation to matter, something entirely separate and distinct from
          matter. There are however, but few in the Christian world who
          have worked themselves so far into the depths of these mysteries,
          as they term them, as to believe in such absurdities as these. I
          could not believe it for one moment--I never did. To suppose that
          there is a spirit in man and that that spirit has no shape, no
          likeness and occupies no space, as the immaterialists inform us
          in their writings, is something that I do not believe, and never
          could believe, unless I became perfectly beside myself, and
          deranged in my mind.
          We, as Latter-day Saints, believe that the spirits that occupy
          these tabernacles have form and likeness similar to the human
          tabernacle. Of course there may be deformities existing in
          connection with the outward tabernacle which do not exist in
          connection with the spirit that inhabits it. These tabernacles
          become deformed by accident in various ways, sometimes at birth,
          but this may not altogether or in any degree deform the spirits
          that dwell within them, therefore we believe that the spirits
          which occupy the bodies of the human family are more or less in
          the resemblance of the tabernacles.
          Now a question arises, If this spirit can exist separate and
          independent of the tabernacle, when the tabernacle dies is it
          unreasonable to suppose that it could exist before the tabernacle
          was formed? This is an important question and in my estimation
          there is nothing absurd or unreasonable in the least degree, in
          believing that that personage that we call the intelligent
          spirit, which can exist between death and the resurrection,
          separate and distinct from the body, could also have had an
          existence before the body was formed, that is, a pre-existence.
          This is a Scriptural doctrine, for there are many passages in
          Scripture which, in my estimation, prove that man had a
          pre-existence. If we turn to the first and second chapters of
          Genesis, we shall find it clearly indicated that man had an
          existence before he was placed in the Garden of Eden. In the
          first chapter of Genesis we are told that God made the earth, and
          the seas, and the grass, and the herbs and the trees in about six
          days of time. We also read that on the fifth day of the creation
          he made the fish and fowls; that on the sixth day he made the
          animals, and last of all that he made man, male and female
          created he them. This seems to have been the last work of
          creation on the sixth day. Read on still further, in the second
          chapter of Genesis, and we are informed that on the seventh day
          there was not yet a man to till the ground. Now how are we going
          to reconcile this with that which is stated in the preceding
          chapter--on the fifth day he made the fowls and the fish, and on
          the sixth day he made the animals before he made man, and on the
          seventh day there was not yet a man to till the ground. And then
          we are informed about man's being placed in the garden on the
          seventh day; and also that on that day the beasts were formed and
          brought to the man to see what he would call them. This seems to
          have been another department of work that the Lord accomplished
          on the morning of the seventh day. He planted a garden on the
          seventh day in Eden, he placed the man in that garden on the
          seventh day; and then we are informed that he brought the beasts
          of the field and the various animals that he had made before the
          man, and man gave names to them on the Sabbath day; but on the
          sixth day they were made male and female. I reconcile this by
          giving a pre-existence to man; such is my faith. I believe that
          man had an existence before the Lord commenced the great temporal
          work of creation, so far as this planet is concerned. How long he
          had existed prior to the formation of this planet I do not know,
          but it is certain God seems to have formed the spiritual part of
          it in the six days, and when it comes to the temporal part that
          seems to have been the work of the seventh day. On the seventh
          day the Bible says that God ended his work. He did not altogether
          end it on the sixth, but he ended it on the seventh day.
          When we come to new revelation which God has vouchsafed to give
          to his people in these latter times, this subject is made very
          plain; and on these new revelations in connection with the old,
          what little light we can gain through the hymn that was sung at
          the opening of the meeting, was founded, "When shall I regain thy
          presence," as expressed in the first verse, showing that we once
          were in his presence and existed where he is, but for some reason
          we have been banished therefrom, and that when we are redeemed we
          shall return again, or as one of the inspired writers has
          it--"the spirit shall return to God who gave it."
          This returning of the spirit to God who gave it, clearly shows to
          my mind that the spirit once existed with God and dwelt in his
          presence, otherwise the word "return" would be inapplicable. If I
          were going to China it would be inapplicable for me to say I am
          returning to China. Why? Because I never have been there,
          consequently the word "return" would be an improper word. So in
          regard to the saying of the prophet, it would be entirely
          improper to say that, after the body crumbles to dust the spirit
          would "return" to God who gave it, if it never had been there.
          Jesus seems to have been a pattern in all things pertaining to
          his brethren, and we find that he had a previous existence--his
          spirit existed before he came and tabernacled in the flesh. This
          is abundantly proved in the Scriptures. In the prayer which he
          offered to his heavenly Father beseeching him to make his
          disciples one, he says, "Father, glorify thou me with that glory
          which I had with thee before the world was." Now if Jesus dwelt
          with the Father before the world was, why not the rest of the
          family, or in other words, the rest of the spirits? It certainly
          was not his tabernacle which dwelt there before the world was,
          for he came in the meridian of time, and his spirit entered a
          tabernacle of flesh and bones, and was born of a woman, just the
          same as all the rest of the human family. What then is the
          meaning of that Scripture which speaks of Jesus being the elder
          brother? It certainly could not have reference to him being the
          eldest so far as his natural birth on this earth was concerned,
          for he certainly was not the eldest, for generation after
          generation had preceded him during the four thousand years which
          had passed away, from the time of creation until he was born; but
          yet he is called the "elder brother." In another Scripture it is
          said of him that he was "the first-born of every creature." This
          would imply, then, that Jesus, so far as the great family of man
          is concerned, was the first born of the whole of them. How and
          when was he born? He was born in the eternal world, not his flesh
          and bones, but that intelligent spirit which dwelt within his
          tabernacle was born before this world was made, and he seems to
          have been the first spirit that was born, and for this reason he
          became the elder brother; and we are told in many Scriptures in
          the New Testament, that we are his brethren, and that he is not
          ashamed to call us his brethren. I look upon him as having the
          same origin as we had, only he was the eldest; and if he was born
          in the eternal world thousands of years ago, why not all the rest
          of his brethren, so far as their spirits are concerned? I know
          that the objection will immediately arise in the minds of
          individuals who have not reflected on this subject, if we were
          intelligent personages thousands of years ago, and dwelling in
          the presence of God, and of Jesus, our elder brother, how is it
          that we have no remembrance of anything that transpired in our
          pre-existence? I answer this question by saying, that when we
          came into this world from our former state of existence, and had
          our spirits enclosed within these mortal tabernacles, it had a
          tendency to take away our memories so far as the past was
          concerned. It did so in relation to Jesus. He had great knowledge
          before he was born into this world--sufficient to create the
          heavens and the earth, hence we read in the Hebrews that God, by
          his Son, made the worlds. This was before Jesus came here, and he
          must then have been the possessor of great knowledge to have been
          able to do that; but when he took upon himself flesh and bones
          did he forget this knowledge? We read in the Scriptures, speaking
          of Jesus coming here and taking a body of flesh and bones that
          "in his humiliation his judgment was taken away." What
          humiliation? His descending from the presence of God his Father
          and descending below all things, his judgment was taken away,
          that is, his remembrance of things that were past, and that
          knowledge which, while in the presence of his Father, enabled him
          to make worlds, and he had to begin at the first principles of
          knowledge, just the same as all his brethren who came here in the
          flesh. We read that Jesus, as he grew in stature, grew also in
          wisdom and knowledge. If he had possessed all wisdom, and had not
          forgotten that which he formerly possessed, how was it that he
          could increase in wisdom as he increased in stature? It shows
          clearly that the wisdom which he had possessed thousands of years
          before, had for a wise purpose been taken from him. "His judgment
          was taken away," and he left, as it were, in the very depth of
          humility, beginning at the very first principles of knowledge and
          growing up from grace to grace, as the Scriptures say, from one
          degree to another, until he received a fullness from his Father.
          Then when he did regain all his previous knowledge and wisdom, he
          had the fullness of the Father within him, in other words, "in
          him dwelt all the fullness of the Godhead bodily."
          Now if his knowledge was forgotten, and his judgment taken away,
          why not ours? We find this to be the case. What person among all
          the human family can comprehend what took place in his first
          existence? No one, it is blotted from the memory, and I think
          there is great wisdom manifested in withholding the knowledge of
          our previous existence. Why? Because we could not, if we had all
          our pre-existent knowledge accompanying us into this world, show
          to our Father in the heavens and to the heavenly host that we
          would be in all things obedient; in other words, we could not be
          tried as the Lord designs to try us here in this state of
          existence, to qualify us for a higher state hereafter. In order
          to try the children of men, there must be a degree of knowledge
          withheld from them, for it would be no temptation to them if they
          could understand from the beginning the consequences of their
          acts, and the nature and results of this and that temptation. But
          in order that we may prove ourselves before the heavens obedient
          and faithful in all things, we have to begin at the very first
          principles of knowledge, and be tried from knowledge to
          knowledge, and from grace to grace, until, like our elder
          brother, we finally overcome and triumph over all our
          imperfections, and receive with him the same glory that he
          inherits, which glory he had before the world was.
          This is the way that we as a people look upon our previous
          existence. There is something truly cheering in contemplating the
          previous existence of man, much more so than in the old idea of
          the sectarian world--that God is constantly creating, that he did
          not finish his work some five or six thousand years ago, but that
          he is creating all the time. They will tell you that they have
          spirits in their bodies capable of existing after the bodies have
          crumbled back to mother earth. Ask them the origin of these
          spirits, and they will tell you they originated about the time
          the infant tabernacles of flesh and bone originated. Hence,
          according to their ideas, God has all the time been creating
          about one person every twenty seconds, which I believe is about
          the average rate that persons are born into the world; in other
          words, about three a minute, and according to their ideas the
          Lord is engaged in making spirits with this rapidity, and sending
          them here to this world.
          I cannot, for my part, see that there is any more absurdity in
          believing that he made them thousands of years before they came
          here, than to suppose that he made them just before they came
          here, and entered into the tabernacle. One can certainly not be
          more unreasonable than the other.
          Because we can not recollect our former existence is no proof
          whatever that we did not have one. I can prove this. In regard to
          this present existence, what person is there in this congregation
          who can remember the first six months of his or her infancy?
          There is not a man nor a woman on the face of the earth, I
          presume, who can remember this; but no person will argue, on that
          account, that he did not exist at that time. Oh no, says the
          objector, that would be an improper method of arguing. Our
          memories have nothing to do with a previous existence. If we
          remember it, all good; if we do not, it does not alter that
          If we were born in heaven before this world was made, the
          question might arise as to the nature of that birth. Was it by
          command that the spiritual substance, scattered through space,
          was miraculously brought together, and organized into a spiritual
          form, and called a spirit? Is that the way that Jesus, the
          firstborn of every creature, was brought into existence? Oh no;
          we were all born there after the same manner that we are here,
          that is to say, every person that had an existence before he came
          here had a literal father and literal mother, a personal father
          an a personal mother; hence the Apostle Paul, in speaking to the
          heathen at Ephesus, says, "We are his offspring." Now I look upon
          every man and woman that have ever come here on this globe, or
          that ever will come, as having a father and mother in the heavens
          by whom their spirits were brought into existence. But how long
          they resided in the heavens before they came here is not
          We will refer now to the 19th chapter of Job, to show that there
          were sons of God before this world was made. The Lord asked Job a
          question in relation to his pre-existence, saying, "Where wast
          thou when I laid the corner stone of the earth?" Where were you,
          Job, when all the morning stars sang together, and all the sons
          of God shouted for joy; when the nucleus of this creation was
          commenced? If Job had been indoctrinated into all the mysteries
          of modern religionists, he would have answered this question by
          saying, "Lord, why do you ask me such a question? I had no
          existence at that time." But the very question implies the
          existence of Job, but he had forgotten where he was, and the Lord
          put the question as though he did exist, showing to him in the
          declaration, that, when he laid the corner stone of the earth,
          there were a great many sons of God there, and that they all
          shouted together for joy. Who were these sons of God? They
          certainly were not the fleshly descendants of Adam, for he had
          not then been placed in the Garden of Eden. Who were they then?
          They were Jesus, the elder brother, and all the family that have
          come from that day until now--millions on millions--and all who
          will come hereafter, and take tabernacles of flesh and bones
          until the closing up scene of this creation. All these were
          present when God commenced this creation. Jesus was also there
          and superintended the work, for by him God made the worlds,
          consequently he must have been there, and all felt joyful, and
          shouted for joy. What produced their joy? It was foreknowledge.
          They knew that the creation then being formed was for their
          abiding place, where their spirits would go and take upon them
          tabernacles of flesh and bones, and they rejoiced at the
          prospect. They had more knowledge then than the world of mankind
          have now. They saw that it was absolutely necessary for their
          advancement in the scale of being to go and take tabernacles of
          flesh and bone; they saw that their spirits without tabernacles
          never could be made perfect, never could be placed in a position
          to attain to great power, dominion and glory like their Father;
          and understanding that the earth was being created to give them
          the opportunity of reaching his position, they sang together for
          joy. They composed a hymn, and if we could have a copy of it, we
          should no doubt find that it was a hymn in relation to the
          construction of the earth and its future habitation by those
          spirits in the form of men. I should like to see that hymn
          myself, and if we had it we would get our choir here to sing it.
          I think it would impart a good deal of information to us, and
          perhaps we would shout for joy again. 
          It is very evident that this was the belief of the people in the
          days of the Savior. Even the Apostles and those with Jesus
          evidently believed in the pre-existence of man. This is manifest
          from a certain question which they put to Jesus on the occasion
          of a blind man making his appearance before him. They said to
          him, "Master, who did sin, this man or his parents, that he was
          born blind?" In other words, did this man sin before he was born,
          and in consequence of his sin was he born blind? Or was it that
          his father sinned that he was born blind? This question would
          have been very foolish to put to the Savior, unless they had
          believed in the pre-existence of man. But they not only did
          believe it, they also believed it possible for man to sin in that
          pre-existence, and that the penalty of that sin might be carried
          down to this state of existence, and be the cause of blindness at
          birth, and with that belief they put the question to the Savior.
          That would have been a very favorable opportunity for him to have
          corrected them, if their ideas about pre-existence had been
          false. He could have turned to them and said, he could not have
          sinned before he was born, and that be the cause that he was born
          blind, because he had no previous existence. But he said no such
          thing, he replied, "Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but
          that the glory of God might be made manifest."
          In the first and second chapter of Genesis, in the new
          translation given by inspiration through Joseph Smith the
          Prophet, this subject is made very plain. After Joseph had
          translated the Book of Mormon from the gold plates, the Lord
          commanded him to translate the Bible. Now you know that we have
          no inspired translator at the present day among any of the
          nations. We have translations of the Bible made by the wisdom and
          learning of men, but as each translator has differed in his
          views, no two of them agree. Indeed, when we go back in the
          history of the Bible, we find that about four hundred and fifty
          years before Christ Ezra compiled into one volume the different
          books of the Old Testament so far as they were given. Previous to
          that they had been in scattered manuscripts. The five books of
          Moses were kept in the Ark of the Testament. The writings of
          Joshua and others who followed Moses were kept here and there,
          and but very few copies were to be had in those early days.
          Indeed, so scarce were the copies of the Bible, that in the days
          of the kings of Israel they had lost almost all knowledge of any
          written copy of the Bible. They retained many of their
          ordinances, their Temple worship, and so on, but written copies
          of the Bible had so nearly disappeared, that on repairing the
          Temple at a certain time they found a copy of it hid up, but they
          did not know whether it was true or not. They had nothing to
          compare it with, and the only way they could ascertain whether it
          was a true copy of the Bible was to send for a man of God--a
          Prophet--and get him to inquire of the Lord whether it was
          genuine or not. Thus we see that the people in those early ages
          were not favored as we are in these days with copies of the
          Bible. But Ezra, according to the history, gathered up these
          fragments as far as he could.
          Two hundred years before Christ there were seventy-two
          Israelites, said to be six out of each tribe, met together in the
          city of Alexandria in Egypt, and they translated the law of
          Moses, the prophets and the psalms from such Hebrew copies as
          they happened to have possession of, into the Greek. This was
          called the Septuagint translation. Jerome, a staunch Roman
          Catholic, translated this Greek version called the Septuagint
          into what was termed the Vulgate--a Latin translation. That, and
          copies of it made by scribes for many generations, became the
          Bible of the Roman Catholics; and even to this day, so far as
          they use Latin they appeal to that edition of the Scriptures
          called the Vulgate.
          In the year 1610 the Vulgate edition was translated into English.
          This was called the Douay Bible, because it was published at the
          town of Douay in France, and it is the Roman Catholic Bible, so
          far as the English translation is concerned, to the present day.
          It differs materially from the Protestant Bible.
          About the same time that the Douay translation was published--in
          1607, King James the First appointed fifty-four men, some six or
          seven of whom did not serve, to translate the Bible from the
          original Hebrew, and they gave us that version called King James'
          All these translators that I have spoken of translated by their
          own wisdom, according to the best understanding they had. None of
          them were prophets or revelators, and not one of them understood
          the meaning of the original text like a man of God filled with
          the Holy Ghost. But they have made a very good translation
          notwithstanding, especially the forty-seven who labored under the
          appointment of King James. Different parts of the Scriptures were
          portioned out among six different classes of translators, and
          they, I believe, have given us the very best copy of the Bible in
          existence, so far as translations by human wisdom are concerned.
          But to come back again, as I said before, after having translated
          the Book of Mormon, this young man, Joseph Smith, a man of no
          education or learning, comparatively speaking, was commanded to
          translate the Bible by inspiration. He commenced the work, and
          the first and second chapters of Genesis containing the history
          of the creation are very plain and full. In the first chapter the
          Lord speaks about the spiritual creation of all things before
          they were made temporally. In the second chapter he goes on to
          state that there was not yet a man to till the ground, "for in
          heaven created I them." That explains the mystery about the work
          previously spoken of in the first chapter, and shows that it had
          a reference to the great work which God had performed in the
          heavens before he made this earth temporally. This same doctrine
          is inculcated in some small degree in the Book of Mormon.
          However, I do not think that I should have ever discerned it in
          that book had it not been for the new translation of the
          Scriptures, that throwing so much light and information on the
          subject, I searched the Book of Mormon to see if there were
          indications in it that related to the pre-existence of man. I
          found them in a great revelation that was given to the prophet
          who led the first colony to this country from the Tower of Babel
          at the time the language was confounded. This great prophet had a
          remarkable vision before he arrived on this continent. In this
          vision he saw the spiritual personage of our Savior as he existed
          before he came to take upon him flesh and bones; and Jesus, in
          talking to this great man of God, informed him that as he
          appeared to him in the spirit so would he appear to his brethren
          in the flesh in future generations, and said he, "I am he that
          was prepared from before the foundation of the word, to redeem my
          people." He furthermore addressed himself to this great man
          saying, "Seest thou that thou art created in mine own image?"
          That is, man here on the earth is in the image of that spiritual
          body or personage of Jesus so far as we are not deformed. "Seest
          thou that thou art created in mine own image, yea even in the
          beginning created I all men after mine own image." This is about
          the only place that refers pointedly to the pre-existence of man
          in the Book of Mormon. I think there are one or two other
          passages in which it is just referred to.
          Now admit, as the Latter-day Saints do, that we had a previous
          existence, and that when we die we shall return to God and our
          former habitation, where we shall behold the face of our Father,
          and the question immediately arises, shall we have our memories
          so increased by the Spirit of the living God that we shall ever
          remember our previous existence? I think we shall. Jesus seems to
          have gained this even here in this world, otherwise he would not
          have prayed, saying, "Father, glorify thou me with that glory
          which I had with thee before the world was," showing plainly that
          he had obtained by revelation a knowledge from his Father of
          something about the glory that he had before the world was. This
          being the case with Jesus, why not his younger brethren also
          obtain this information by revelation? And when we do return back
          into the presence of our Father, will we not there also have our
          memories so quickened that we will remember his face, having
          dwelt in his presence for thousands of years? It will not be like
          going to visit strangers that we have never seen before. Is not
          this a comfort to persons who expect to depart this life, like
          all the rest of the human family? They have a consolation that
          they are going not among strangers, not to a being whose face
          they never say, but to one whom they will recognize, and will
          remember, having dwelt with him for ages before the world was.
          Looking upon it in the light of reason, independent of
          revelation, if a person were to form a system of religion
          according to the best light that he had, would it not be more
          happifying and calculated more in its nature to give joy and
          peace to the mind to suppose that we were going back to a
          personage we were well acquainted with, rather than to one we had
          no idea of? I think I should prefer, so far as reason is
          concerned, to be well acquainted with people I am going among.
          These are the expectations of the Latter-day Saints: we do not
          expect to go among strangers. When we get back there we expect
          this place to be familiar to us, and when we meet this, that and
          the other one of all the human family that have been here on the
          earth, we shall recognize them as those with whom we have dwelt
          thousands of years in the presence of our Father and God. This
          renewing of old friendships and acquaintances, and again enjoying
          all the glory we once possessed, will be a great satisfaction to
          all who are privileged to do so.
          If we ever dwelt there, it is altogether likely that God made
          some promises to us when there. He would converse with us, and
          cheer us up. Being his offspring--his sons and daughters, he
          would not be austere and unwilling to converse with his own
          children, but he would teach them a great many things. And all
          this will be familiar to us. We read in the New Testament that
          God did make promises to us before this world was made. I
          recollect one passage in one of the epistles of Paul, either to
          Timothy or Titus, the Apostle says, "In hope of eternal life,
          which God, who can not lie, promised before the world began." To
          whom did he make that promise? I contend that we had the promise
          of eternal life before the world began on certain conditions--if
          we would comply with the gospel of the Son of God, by repenting
          of our sins and being faithful in keeping the commandments of
          There are many Scriptures in the New Testament that have relation
          to the previous existence of man, which I do not at this time
          feel disposed to quote. They can be searched up by the Latter-day
          Saints, and by all who are curious enough to enquire into these
          things. There are some other things however, which I feel anxious
          to bring forth in connection with the pre-existence of man. One
          thing is our origin more fully. I have already stated that the
          spirits of the children of men were born unto their parents. Now
          who are the parents of these children?
          There are certain promises made to the Latter-day Saints, one of
          them being that when we take a wife here in this world, it is our
          privilege by obedience to the ordinances of heaven, to have that
          wife married to us for time and for all eternity. This is a
          promise which God has made by revelation to his Church, hence the
          Latter-day Saints believe in the eternity of the marriage
          covenant. This is one of our fundamental doctrines. We consider
          that a marriage for time alone is after the old Gentile order,
          and they have lost all knowledge of the true ordinances and order
          of heaven. They marry until death separates them. I believe that
          almost every religious society, in their marriage ceremony, use
          this phrase, "I pronounce you man and wife until death shall part
          you!" This sort of a marriage never originated with God; the
          marriage that originated with him is the same as that of which we
          had an example in the beginning--the first marriage that was ever
          celebrated here on the earth. Do you enquire what was the form of
          that first marriage between Adam and Eve? I will explain it in a
          few words. They were united as husband and wife by the Lord
          himself; when they were united they did not know anything about
          death, for they had not partaken of the fruit of the tree that
          was forbidden, and they were then immortal beings. Here were two
          beings united who were as immortal as you will be when you came
          forth from your graves in the morning of the first resurrection.
          Under these conditions Adam and Eve were married. I do not
          believe that the Lord used the ceremony that is now used--I marry
          you until death shall separate you. By what means did death come
          into the world? After this marriage by partaking of the forbidden
          fruit, they brought death on both male and female, or as the
          Apostle Paul Says, "By one man sin and death entered into the
          world, even so shall all be made alive, and every man in his own
          It seems then, that if there had been no sin death never would
          have come upon Adam and Eve, and they would have been living
          to-day, immortal, nearly six thousand years after being placed in
          the Garden of Eden, and would they not still be husband and wife?
          Certainly, and so they would continue if millions and millions of
          ages should pass away, and you could not point out any period in
          the future, when this relation would cease; no matter how many
          myriads of ages might pass away, unless they by sin brought death
          into the world. All will admit, who reflect on the subject, that
          this marriage was for eternity, and that death interfered with it
          only for the time being, until the resurrection should bring them
          forth and re-unite them.
          The "Mormons," or Latter-day Saints, believe in this kind of
          marriage, and the first one ever performed on the earth is a
          pattern for us. Moreover God has revealed to us the nature of
          marriage, and that its relationships are to exist after the
          resurrection, and that it must be attended to in this life in
          order to secure it for the next life. For instance, if you wish
          to obtain a great many blessings pertaining to the future world,
          you have to secure these blessings here. You cannot be baptized
          in the next state of existence for the remission of sins; that is
          an ordinance pertaining to the flesh, which you must attend to
          here. And so with all other ordinances which God has ordained,
          you have to partake of them here in order to have a claim on the
          promises hereafter. It is so with regard to marriage; and this
          agrees with what Jesus has said in relation to their not marrying
          nor giving in marriage in that world. There will be no such thing
          there. Why? Because this is the world for all these ordinances to
          be attended to. Here is the place to secure all the blessings for
          the next world. We have to show in this probation that we will be
          obedient in obeying the commandments of heaven so that we may
          have a claim on every blessing pertaining to the next life.
          Consequently, we have to secure this marriage for eternity while
          in this world. When a female in the Latter-day Saint Church
          marries a person outside the Church it is not a marriage in our
          estimation, in the scriptural sense of the word, it is only a
          union until death shall part them. When a person does this we
          really consider them weak in the faith; indeed it is equivalent
          in my estimation not only to being weak in the faith, but since
          these revelations were given on the subject, if people with their
          eyes wide open will still reject these important things, and
          marry a person outside the Church, it shows to me very clearly
          that he or she has no regard for the word of God, nor for their
          own salvation. They are lacking not only in faith but in the
          principle of obedience. They have no hope when they marry outside
          the Church, but when they marry in the Church according to this
          order, and the persons who officiate in declaring them husband
          and wife, being commissioned of God and having authority to
          administer in all the ordinances of his kingdom, that marriage is
          not only for time, but for all eternity.
          Another question. Having been married for eternity, we die and
          our spirits go into celestial paradise. We come forth in the
          morning of the first resurrection as immortal males and immortal
          females. Our wives, married to us for eternity, come forth, and
          they are ours by virtue of that which God has pronounced upon
          them through those whom he has appointed, and to whom he has
          given authority. We have a legal claim upon them at the
          resurrection. But here comes forth a person that is married
          outside. She comes up without a husband, he without a wife, or
          any claim upon any of the blessings. Here is the difference
          between these two classes of beings. One dwells as an angel,
          without any power to increase their species, family or dominions,
          without the power to beget sons and daughters. This class will be
          angels. Perhaps many of them will be worthy of obtaining a degree
          of power, glory, and happiness, but not a fullness. Why? Because
          they have not come up to that position of their Father and their
          God. He has power to beget and bring forth sons and daughters in
          the spirit world; and after he has brought forth millions and
          millions of spirits, he has power to organize worlds, and send
          these spirits into these worlds to take temporal bodies to
          prepare them in turn to be redeemed and become Gods, or in other
          words, the sons of God, growing up like their father, possessing
          all his attributes, and propagating their species through all
          eternity. Here then is the difference between these two classes
          of beings--one having lost what they might have obtained and
          enjoyed if they had had faith in God and been willing to obey his
          commandments. But the others are worthy, as the Apostle Paul has
          said, to obtain a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory,
          while the others will be angels or servants, to go and come at
          the bidding of those who are more exalted.
          This is what Paul meant when he said that in the Lord the man is
          not without the woman, neither is the woman without the man; as
          much as to say that in order to be in the Lord and to obtain a
          fullness of his glory and exaltation, you can not be separated;
          or in other words, to speak according to the common phrase, you
          can not live old bachelors or old maids and go down to your
          graves in this condition. That is not the order of heaven, why?
          Because marriage is essentially necessary to qualify them to
          propagate their species throughout all eternity, that they in
          their turn may have worlds created on which these sons and
          daughters of their own begetting may receive tabernacles of flesh
          and bones as we have done. This is the order by which all worlds
          are peopled by spirits that have been born in the eternal worlds;
          and these worlds are organized expressly for them that they may
          go and have another change, another state of being different from
          their spiritual state, where they may possess bodies of flesh and
          bones, which are essentially necessary to the begetting of their
          own species. Spirits can not bring forth, multiply and increase.
          They must have bodies.
          We have said this much on the hymn that was sung in the morning,
          and these ideas are fully inculcated therein, and they are
          established and founded on the revelations God has given in
          different ages. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 / Orson
          Pratt, December 29, 1872
                               ratt, December 29, 1872
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER ORSON PRATT,
             Delivered in the 13th Ward Assembly Rooms, Salt Lake City,
                        Sunday Afternoon, December 29, 1872.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                            TRUE CHRISTMAS AND NEW YEAR.
          We are, this afternoon, commemorating according to our usual
          custom, one of the most important events that has ever transpired
          in our world, and one which most concerns the whole human family,
          namely, the death and sufferings of the Lord Jesus Christ for the
          redemption of the human family. No other event can be compared
          with this in its importance, and in its bearings upon the human
          family. Everything else is but of a secondary consideration, when
          compared with the atonement that has been wrought out in behalf
          of man by the great Redeemer, yet, strange to say, there are
          those in the Christian world, so called, who profess to believe
          in Christianity and yet deny the efficacy of the atoning blood
          that was shed by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. More
          especially has this been the case for a few years past. I suppose
          there are many thousands who deny this now, where there were but
          few at the time of the rise of this Church. This has arisen,
          probably, from the multiplication of spiritual influences, which
          now prevail to a very great extent in the christian
          world--influences that are evil, revelations, false visions,
          spirit rappings and mediums. Almost without exception these false
          spirits have taught those who have listened to them, that there
          is no efficacy in the Atonement.
          There is no subject more fully developed and made manifest to the
          children of men in modern revelation than that of the atonement.
          Much is said in relation to other doctrines, all of which have a
          bearing on the atonement, that lying at the foundation of the
          whole. If the evil one can prevail over the human family so as to
          get them to deny this fundamental doctrine, he knows that they
          are safe, so far as serving him and failing of their salvation
          are concerned. If they can only be wrought upon and deluded so as
          to disbelieve in the doctrine of the atonement, it does not
          matter to Satan what else they may believe. It is not my
          intention, however, this afternoon, unless so led by the Spirit
          of the Lord, to dwell much on this subject. It is one that has
          been so thoroughly taught to the Latter-day Saints, that I esteem
          it almost unnecessary to repeat that with which they are so
          familiar. By partaking of the ordinance of the Lords Supper every
          Sabbath day, we commemorate that great event. If we do not preach
          so much about it by word of mouth we certainly fulfill the
          commandment which God has given requiring us to remember unto the
          Father the crucified body and shed blood of his Son, without
          which there would have been no remission of sin, and no
          redemption, and mankind would have remained in their fallen
          state. No light could have penetrated the hearts of the children
          of men, and there would have been no resurrection, no exaltation
          in the kingdom of God without the atonement. When we speak of
          total depravity, it has reference to certain conditions. Man is
          not totally depraved now, and the reason is, there has been an
          atonement; but do away that, as many do, and total depravity
          would reign, and men would live and die totally degraded beings.
          All the light that has come into the world, and that lights every
          man that comes into the world, has come by reason of the
          atonement. It is an event that all Christian societies
          commemorate more or less, or at least they did in former times.
          They are getting more lax now since the devil and his angels have
          given so many revelations against the atonement.
          The Roman Catholics, about 532 years after Christ, set apart a
          day called Christmas, which they no doubt believed at that time
          was the day of the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. The
          reason why they set apart Christmas and have kept up its
          commemoration from that day until the present time, was because a
          certain monk, a member of their church, named Dionsysius
          commenced a calculation to ascertain, if possible, the period of
          time from the birth of Christ to the time the calculation was
          made; and from all the information that he could glean he set it
          down at 532 years. They had not printed works in those days as we
          have now; they had not access to the abundance of historical and
          chronological information then that we have; but from all the
          information that Dionysius could glean, and making a calculation
          thereon, he came to the above result.
          He also made a calculation in regard to the day on which he
          supposed the Savior to have been born, and that was set down as a
          day to be celebrated by the Roman Catholics church. They have
          certain ordinances in regard to that day, which you may see
          observed in their church in this city. People, prior to this
          time, did not date their documents from the birth of Christ. If
          they were writing a letter they did not say, in the year of our
          Lord 520, in the year of our Lord 416, and so on; this was never
          done until the calculation of Dionysius was made, then it was
          adopted by the Roman Catholics and by all nations among whom they
          had power and influence. By and by other chronologists made
          calculations as to the time of Christ's birth, and from the
          information they could gather together, they discovered that
          Dionysius had made a mistake, and that Christ was born about one
          year before the time set by him. But by this time there were
          great numbers of important State and other documents and papers
          in existence, all dated according to the incorrect calculation of
          this Romish monk. How to remedy this the people did not know, for
          it would not do to alter all these dates.
          Another set of chronologists made calculations, and they
          discovered that Dionysius had made a mistake of two years in
          regard to the time of the Savior's birth. Four others, very
          learned men, sought diligently, and from the information they
          obtained they found that Jesus was born three years before the
          time published by Dionysius. Five others made it four years; some
          few made it five years before, and some seven years before the
          time specified by this Romish monk. Al modern chronologists who
          have taken up the subject, agree that Dionysius was incorrect, at
          least several years. But did the people alter the dates of their
          documents and manuscripts when his error was fully made manifest?
          Not at all; they have continued that old, erroneous reckoning
          down to this present year. But they have attached the name of
          vulgar era to it, in order to indicate that it is incorrect.
          Vulgar era! I think the name is inappropriate, for there are
          thousands of people at the present day, including the youth of
          our land, and perhaps many who have had a collegiate education,
          who never knew or inquired into the meaning of vulgar era, or why
          the term was introduced. Its real meaning is, incorrect era or
          date. For instance, we write a letter to-day, and we call it the
          29th day of December, 1872. This is according to the vulgar era,
          or erroneous date, or the reckoning of Dionysius; but this is not
          the true date. The probability is, independent of the Bible or
          Book of Mormon, from the great mass of testimony that has been
          accumulated for generations past, that Jesus was born nearly four
          years prior to the commencement of this vulgar era, so that our
          present year, 1872, should be 1876. You will find a full account
          of these matters in the writings of the learned, in
          encyclopaedias, and in various works touching upon chronology, so
          that you have no need to take my testimony alone on this subject,
          for you have access to our library here in this city, and you can
          examine works on chronology and see that I am correct. There may
          be those here who would like me to cite some works on this
          subject. I will cite one that I read while I was in England, a
          Bible dictionary, by a very learned author named Smith. This
          subject is treated very plainly and fully in that work. I think
          that Mr. John W. Young of this city has this work in his private
          library. The reason why I make these remarks is, that this is the
          first Sabbath after Christmas, and the day on which I believe the
          Roman Catholics in this city are celebrating certain ordinances
          in their church in commemoration of this event.
          Having found out that there is an error in regard to the year of
          Christ's birth, now let us inquire if the day observed by the
          Christian world as the day of his birth, the 25th of December, is
          or is not the real Christmas Day? A great many authors have found
          out from their researches that it is not. I think that there is
          scarcely an author at the present day that believes that the 25th
          day of December was the day that Christ was born on. Still it is
          observed by certain classes, and we, whether we make any
          profession or not, are just foolish enough to observe this old
          Roman Catholic festival. The boys and girls all look forward with
          great anticipations to Christmas. Many of them, it is true, do
          not know the meaning of it, or why it is celebrated; but when we
          come to reflect on the matter, it is all nonsense to celebrate
          the 25th day of December as the birthday of Jesus. It will do for
          a holiday, so you might select any other day for that purpose. It
          is generally believed and conceded by the learned, who have
          investigated the matter, that Christ was born in April. I have
          seen several accounts--some of them published in our
          periodicals--of learned men in different nations, in which it is
          stated that, according to the best of their judgment from the
          researches they have made, Christ was crucified on the 6th of
          April. That is, the day on which this church was organized. But
          when these learned men go back from the day of his crucifixion to
          the day of his birth, they are at a loss, having no certain
          evidence or testimony by which they can determine it. I intend
          this afternoon to give light on this subject from new revelation,
          which we, as Latter-day Saints, can depend upon. I will read to
          you from the Book of Mormon, some things that happened, at the
          time of the crucifixion, on this great western hemisphere, and I
          will say we have a date given there in connection with these
          events, showing how old Jesus was at the time of his crucifixion.
          It may not be amiss, however, for me to make a few remarks before
          I commence reading, to inform strangers who may be present, that
          the inhabitants of ancient America, and those who wrote the Book
          of Mormon were Israelites! that when they came from the city of
          Jerusalem, 600 years before Christ, they were a righteous people,
          and had prophets among them, and that they kept the law of Moses.
          Now the sacrifices and burnt offerings of that law were typical
          of the great offering that was to be made by our Lord and Savior
          Jesus Christ. The ancient inhabitants of this continent, to whom
          I have referred, understood the nature of these ordinances, and
          they looked forward to the coming of the true Messiah and
          celebrated it by these ordinances, the same as we look backward
          and celebrate his death and sufferings by partaking of the
          symbols of, as we have done this afternoon.
          Now if God led a company of Israelites from Palestine to colonize
          this continent, and taught them to keep the law of Moses with its
          sacrifices and burnt offerings, typical of the great sacrifice
          that was to be made at Jerusalem, it would not be at all strange
          for him to give to them a sign concerning Jesus, when he should
          be born, and when he should die. He did this by the mouths of
          prophets. Numerous prophets were raised up on this land, and they
          prophesied to the inhabitants thereof, and taught them about the
          coming of Jesus, and what signs would be given at the time he
          should come. They taught them that the night before Jesus should
          be born there would be no darkness on this land, but that it
          would be perfectly light. They would see the sun set in the
          evening, and that, during the night, until it should rise the
          next morning, there would be no darkness; that great signs and
          lights would appear in the heavens, and that they were to be to
          them indications of the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus
          Christ. These signs were given, and by them the people on this
          continent knew the very day that Jesus was born.
          Some years after this, before the crucifixion of Jesus, they fell
          into great wickedness. They persecuted the prophets, shed their
          blood, stoned them to death, and cast them out of their midst,
          and they were full of wrath and indignation and sinned against
          great light, so that the Lord was under the necessity of sending
          other Prophets to them, telling them that at the time of the
          crucifixion, if they did not repent, many of their cities should
          be burned with fire, many destroyed with tempests, and that they
          should be visited with sore judgments and calamities; and that
          during the time Jesus should be lifted up on the cross, there
          should be tremendous earthquakes upon all the face of this
          continent, and that after that there would be three days and
          three nights of darkness, and that this darkness should come
          immediately after the execution of the Savior. Now let us read
          what the Prophet says on page 450 of the Book of Mormon
          concerning these events, which transpired just as they had been
          "And it came to pass in the thirty and fourth year, in the first
          month, in the fourth day of the month, there arose a great storm,
          such an one as had never been known in all the land." From what
          period was this date reckoned? We are informed on page 435 of
          this book, that the Nephites began reckoning the beginning of
          their year from the sign given them at the birth of the
          Savior--the night without darkness. Previous to that they had
          reckoned from the time of their leaving Jerusalem, 600 years
          before Christ, and they continued this some five centuries, until
          they changed the form of their government on this continent, and
          introduced judges; then they reckoned their time from the
          beginning of the reign of the judges. This mode of reckoning
          lasted ninety-one years. Five hundred and nine years having
          passed away before the reign of the judges commenced, and
          ninety-one added to that made 600 years from the time that Lehi
          and the colony came out of Jerusalem. Then they changed their
          mode of reckoning, and reckoned from the time this great sign was
          given in the heavens, so that we know what this date means--"in
          the thirty and fourth year, in the first month, and in the fourth
          day of the month." Now I think this gives us a clue to the age of
          Jesus when he was crucified, but we will read on, and see about
          the storm.
          "There arose a great storm, such an one as never had been known
          in all the land; and there was also a great and terrible tempest,
          and there was terrible thunder, insomuch that it did shake the
          whole earth as if it was about to divide asunder; and there were
          exceeding sharp lightnings, such as never had been known in all
          the land. And the city of Zarahemla did take fire."
          Zarahemla was their great capital city. It was located in the
          north part of South America, on one branch of that river that we
          call the river Magdalene, that runs down from the mountains to
          the northward, and empties into the Caribbean sea. On the west
          side of that river was located the great city of Zarahemla. We
          will now read further:
          "And the city Zarahemla did take fire; and the city Moroni did
          sink into the depths of the sea, and the inhabitants thereof were
          drowned; and the earth was carried up upon the city of Moronihah,
          that in the place of the city thereof there became a great
          Now if our miners, those who go into South America, should happen
          to dig in a few thousand feet, and should come across old
          buildings, they need not be astonished, for the Lord made a
          terrible revolution in the land. There came a great mountain in
          the place where this city stood; "and there was a great and
          terrible destruction in the land southward"--what we term South
          "But behold, there was a more great and terrible destruction in
          the land northward"--North America--"for behold the whole face of
          the land was changed because of the tempest, and the whirlwinds,
          and the thunderings, and the lightnings, and the exceeding great
          quakings of the whole earth; and the highways were broken up, and
          the level roads were spoiled, and many smooth places became
          rough, and many great and notable cities were sunk, and many were
          burned, and many were shook till the buildings thereof had fallen
          to the earth, and the inhabitants thereof were slain, and the
          places were left desolate; and there were some cities which
          remained; but the damage thereof was exceeding great, and there
          were many in them who were slain; and there were some who were
          carried away in the whirlwind, and whither they went no man
          knoweth, save they know that they were carried away; and thus the
          face of the whole earth became deformed because of the tempests,
          and the thunderings, and the lightnings, and the quaking of the
          earth. And behold, the rocks were rent in twain; they were broken
          up upon the face of the whole earth, insomuch that they were
          found in broken fragments, and in seams and in cracks, upon all
          the face of the land."
          You can see from this, what terrible convulsions have taken place
          on this continent, even here in these mountains. In the mountains
          west of this valley, you will find the strata of rock set up
          almost perpendicular; that was not the way they were first
          formed. You will also find there, as elsewhere, strata dipping at
          a greater or less angle into the earth. The cause of all this has
          been the terrible convulsions that our globe has undergone, and
          more especially at the time of the crucifixion.
          "And it came to pass that when the thunderings, and the
          lightnings, and the storm, and the tempest, and the quakings of
          the earth did cease--for behold they did last for about the space
          of three hours; and it was said by some that the time was
          greater; nevertheless, all these great and terrible things were
          done in about the space of three hours; and then behold there was
          darkness upon the face of the land."
          I might go on reading, if it were necessary, in regard to the
          weeping, wailing and mourning of the people during these three
          days of intense darkness--no sun, moon, nor stars were to be
          seen, and the vapor was so great that the inhabitants of the land
          could feel it, the same as the darkness was felt in the land of
          Egypt. It was not, of course, the darkness that was felt, but the
          vapor that was so thick. There is one thing, however, to which I
          wish to call your special attention, before I make any further
          remarks in regard to the date that is here given. When this
          darkness dispersed, it is said to have been morning. You will
          find it on page 454. "And it came to pass that thus did the three
          days pass away; and it was in the morning, and the darkness
          dispersed from off the face of land, and the earth did cease to
          tremble, and the rocks did cease to rend."
          You might say that this was not three days and three nights, for
          Jesus was crucified and died on the cross at 3 o'clock in the
          afternoon at Jerusalem, and consequently for it to have been just
          three days and three nights, you might suppose that the darkness
          must have dispersed in the afternoon. But this book tells us that
          when the three days and three nights of darkness had passed away
          it was morning. Now why this discrepancy--for it seems to be
          one--between the Bible and the Book of Mormon? Can you account
          for it, and tell why it should have been morning in America? The
          reason is because of the difference in longitude. The writer of
          the account in the Book of Mormon resided in the northwestern
          portion of South America. Now you take a map of the world, and
          see the difference in longitude between the place where Jesus was
          crucified, and that where the writer of the Book of Mormon lived,
          and you will find that it is about seven and a half hours. Now
          you subtract seven and a half hours from 3 o'clock in the
          afternoon, and what time would it be when the three hours of
          quaking and the destruction of cities expired, or when the
          darkness commenced? Would it not be in the morning? Take away
          seven and a half hours longitude from 3 o'clock--the time that
          Jesus expired--and would it not be half past seven o'clock in the
          morning with the inhabitants of this land, while it was afternoon
          with the inhabitants in Jerusalem?
          I presume that Joseph Smith, being an unlearned man, never saw
          this to the day of his death; that is, he never understood it. I
          never heard him, or any learned man refer to it until after his
          death; but reading it over myself, I saw, at first, there was an
          apparent discrepancy between this book and the New Testament; one
          placing it in the morning, and the other in the afternoon. When
          thinking of this seeming discrepancy, the difference in longitude
          occurred to my mind, and that is just what it should be to
          account for the difference in time given in the two books; and
          this, though not direct, is incidental proof that the man who
          translated this book was inspired of God. I do not think that
          Joseph Smith, to the day of his death, knew that a difference in
          time at different places on the earth was caused by their
          difference of longitude. 
          We will now go back to the date, at the commencement of the
          extract I have been reading--"in the thirty and fourth year, in
          the first month, and on the fourth day of the month"--that would
          make him thirty-three years, three days and part of another day
          old, at the time of his crucifixion, according to the account
          given in the Book of Mormon. But this does not decide his age
          exactly, unless we can learn what kind of years the Nephites
          reckoned. Did they reckon their years as the English and
          Americans do? No, I presume not. How can we learn the length of
          their years? I do not know of any better method than going back
          to the early Spanish historians who lived contemporary with
          Columbus, the discoverer of America. When they penetrated into
          Mexico, and conquered that country, they found that the Mexicans
          were partially civilized, so that they had many records, although
          their mode of keeping them was very different from those of other
          nations. The Mexican calendar gave their views and ideas with
          regard to the length of the year, and their mode of reckoning
          them. This was about the close of the fifteenth century, for
          Columbus discovered America in 1492. Soon afterwards these
          Spanish historians became extensively acquainted with Mexican
          literature, their form of writing, and the half civilization that
          existed among them. I have in my possession nine large volumes,
          got up soon after the Book of Mormon was translated, by Lord
          Kingsborough, on Mexican antiquities. The nine volumes will
          probably weigh over two hundred pounds. Five of them contain
          nothing but plates of antiquities, the other four contain
          translations, in English, Spanish and French, of the declarations
          of historians concerning Mexican literature and their knowledge
          concerning the length of the year. They reckoned 365 days to the
          year, but did not add what is termed the intercalary day every
          four years, to make what we call leap year. They did this only
          once in fifty-two years, and then they added thirteen days, which
          made one day for every four years. This shows that they had a
          very good idea of the length of the year.
          When Jesus was crucified, at the age of about thirty-three years,
          if the Nephites reckoned according to the Mexican portion of the
          Israelites, they had not added the eight days that we would add
          for leap year, consequently this would shorten their years, and
          instead of being thirty-three years, three days and part of the
          fourth day, it would bring it, according to our reckoning, eight
          days less than the Book of Mormon date, or thirty-two years,
          three hundred and sixty days and fifteen hours. This, then, it is
          highly probable, must have been the real period that existed
          between the birth and the crucifixion of our Savior.
          Now we have a clue in the New Testament to the time of his
          crucifixion, but not of his birth; that is, we know that he was
          crucified on Friday, for all of the Evangelists testify that
          Saturday was the Jewish Sabbath, and that on Friday Jesus was
          hung on the cross, and according to the testimony of the learned,
          that was on the 6th of April, consequently by going back from the
          crucifixion 32 years, 360 days and 15 hours, making allowance for
          the longitude, it gives Thursday for his birthday. Again, making
          allowance for the errors of Dionysius the monk, adding four years
          or nearly so to the vulgar or incorrect era, it would make the
          organization of this Church take place precisely, to the very
          day, 1800 years from the day that he was lifted up on the cross.
          This is something very marvelous in my mind. Joseph Smith did not
          choose the 6th of April upon which to organize this Church: he
          received a commandment from god, which is contained in the Book
          of Doctrine and Covenants, setting apart that day as the one upon
          which the Church should be organized. Why did he set up his
          kingdom precisely 1800 years from the day on which he was lifted
          up on the cross? I do not know why. The Lord has his own set time
          to bring to pass his great purposes. If Joseph Smith had been
          learned in chronology and in the writings of the world; if he had
          been a middle-aged or an old man of experience, or a man who had
          access to libraries, instead of a farmer's boy, then we might
          have supposed that perhaps he had studied chronology, sought out
          the true era, found out how to distinguish between the true and
          the vulgar, and then find out the true date of the birth of
          Christ and his crucifixion, and got it all arranged together
          nicely and harmoniously, and then have pretended that he had had
          a revelation to organize the Church precisely 1800 years from
          that great event. This is what we should have to concede if we
          wanted to make out the work an imposition: but the very fact that
          God commanded that boy to organize the church on that day, ought
          to be regarded as strong collateral evidence of the divine
          authenticity of the Book of Mormon.
               Perhaps I have said all that is needful on this matter. If I
          were to celebrate Christmas, or the birthday of Christ, I should
          go back a little less than thirty-three years from his
          crucifixion, and it would bring it to Thursday, the 11th day of
          April, as the first day of the first year of the true Christian
          era; and reckoning on thirty-two years, 360 days and fifteen
          hours from that, it would bring it to the crucifixion, and bring
          it on Friday also.
          In saying that "it was the thirty-fourth year, first month and
          fourth day of the month" on which the great storm and earthquakes
          took place, there is another thing to be noted--that it must have
          taken place on Friday, according to the Nephite reckoning in
          order to bring his crucifixion on Friday. If Tuesday was the
          first day of the 34th year, the second day would be Wednesday,
          the third Thursday, and Friday would have been the fourth day of
          the month, just as the Book of Mormon says, bringing it correct
          according to the reckoning of the days of the week.
          There is another thing that, perhaps, a great many of the
          Latter-day Saints and many of the world have not reflected upon;
          that is, that the beginning of our present New Year is incorrect,
          reckoning the years from the birth of Christ, for the first day
          of January was not the day of his birth. We call it the first day
          of the year, but it has no reference to the day of Christ's
          birth. The first day of the year of the true Christian era should
          be the day of the Savior's birth--the 11th day of April. About
          122 years ago we did not have the first day of January for New
          Year. At that time, or thereabouts, everybody in America and
          England reckoned New Year's Day on the 25th of March. That had
          been the first day of the year for many generations. How came it
          to be changed to the first day of January? In 1751 the Parliament
          of Great Britain passed a law that the year should be moved
          backwards from the 25th day of March to the 1st day of January,
          making the year 1751 some eighty-four days shorter than all the
          other years had been. Why did they do this? In order to place New
          year in connection with a certain event in astronomy. Those who
          are acquainted with the earth going round the sun, know that the
          path in which it moves is not a circle but an ellipse, or
          elongated circle. You make a wire into the form of a circle and
          then pull it out, and that is the form of an ellipse. The sun is
          situated in one of the foci of this ellipse, and is nearer to the
          earth on the 1st day of January or the 31st day of December, by
          about three millions of miles, than it is on the 1st day of July.
          The object of placing the year back was to have the year begin
          when the earth was in its perihelion in going around the sun.
          This was not the only alteration that has been made, but this
          accounts for the phrases "new style" and "old style," with which
          you occasionally meet in historical documents, the former having
          reference to the new mode of reckoning, the latter to the old
          I have said that this was not the only change made in time. In
          the year 1752--when the second day of September had arrived, in
          order to bring the year to correspond with the seasons, it was
          found necessary to set the time forward so that the 3rd day of
          September should be called the 14th, eleven days being dropped
          out of the calendar. This was also established by parliamentary
          law; and in this way the seasons have been brought to correspond,
          in some measure, with the length of the year. All these things
          should be taken into consideration in our dates; and when we read
          the saying in the Book of Covenants that the Lord organized his
          Church in the year of our Lord 1830, in the fourth month, and on
          the sixth day of the month, the Lord made his language to
          correspond with our present mode of reckoning, that is, he
          adopted the reckoning of the English, established by
          parliamentary law. Instead of reckoning the year to begin on the
          25th of March, he says, "It being in the year of our Lord 1830,
          the fourth month, and the sixth day of the month that the Church
          was organized." We are not on this account to take this as the
          real date, but it is adapted to our present mode of reckoning. I
          have made these remarks that no persons, if they should feel
          disposed to search into chronology, might be misled in relation
          to this matter. Being so near Christmas and New year, I have
          deemed it appropriate to dwell on this subject, for the purpose
          of enlightening the minds of all who may be present, so far as I
          have information in regard to it.
          Now, if I have not already occupied too much time, I desire to
          dwell a little upon the subject of the chronology of our world.
          We have no dates on which we can depend as to the period or
          history of our globe from the creation down to the present time.
          Chronologists differ in regard to the history and age of the
          world. Some make the age of the world, from the creation to the
          coming of Christ, to be four thousand years. Archbishop Usher has
          introduced this chronology into King James' Bible; and in that
          you will find all the dates adapted to that particular reckoning;
          and according to his reckoning you will find that Christ came in
          the year of the world 4004. Is this to be depended upon? Not at
          all. Many chronologists equally as learned, and who have made
          deeper researches than he has on this subject, differ with him
          materially. There are many who place the birth of Christ at 5500
          years from the creation; others place it at 5490, others at 5508
          or 9 years. There are about two hundred chronologists who all
          differ in regard to this matter. Many Jewish chronologists make
          it over six thousand years from the creation till the birth of
          Christ, so that you see when we attempt to take up the subject on
          the learning of the world, we are in the midst of confusion--no
          person knows anything about it. It is not really necessary that
          we should know, but we have some little light on this subject. 
          We know that it was not six thousand years from the creation to
          the birth of Christ. How do we know this? God has told us in new
          revelation that this earth is destined to continue its temporal
          existence for seven thousand years, and that at the commencement
          of the seventh thousand, he will cause seven angels to sound
          their trumpets. In other words, we may call it the Millennium,
          for the meaning of the world millennium is a thousand years. Six
          thousand years must pass away from the creation till the time
          that Jesus comes in the clouds of heaven, and he will not come
          exactly at the expiration of six thousand years. When the Prophet
          Joseph asked the Lord what was meant by the sounding of the seven
          trumpets, he was told, "That as God made the world in six days,
          and on the seventh day he finished his work and sanctified it,
          and also formed man out of the dust of the earth; even so in the
          beginning of the seventh thousand years, will the Lord God
          sanctify the earth, and complete the salvation of man, and judge
          all things and shall redeem all things, except that which he hath
          not put into his power when he shall have sealed all things unto
          the end of all things, and the sounding of the trumpets of the
          seven angels is the preparing and finishing of his work, in the
          beginning of the seventh thousand years; to prepare the way
          before the time of his coming." This quotation will be found in
          the Pearl of Great Price, p. 34.
          Neither of these trumpets have sounded yet, but they shortly
          will; and this gives us a little clue to the period and age of
          our world. We know that six thousand years have not yet elapsed
          since the creation, but we know that they have very nearly
          expired. We know that God set up and established this kingdom
          1800 years from the date of his crucifixion, preparatory to his
          coming in the clouds of heaven to receive the kingdom that he
          sets up here on the earth, and to rule and reign over all people,
          nations and tongues that are spared alive. Perhaps this is
          sufficient on the history and chronology of the world; but for
          the benefit of the Saints, and it will not hurt the strangers,
          although they do not believe in our revelations, I will refer to
          some further evidence and testimony on this subject.
          In the new translation which Joseph Smith was commanded to make
          of the Old and New Testament, we find that some of the dates
          given in King James' translation of events before the flood are
          incorrect, but they are corrected in the new translation. For
          instance, the age of Enoch, as given in King James' Bible, is
          incorrect. The new translation gives a lengthy prophecy which was
          delivered to him before the flood, and this prophecy relates to
          generations in the future as well as to things that were past.
          Enoch, in his vision, saw the great work that he was destined to
          perform on the earth, in preaching the Gospel among the nations,
          and gathering out a people and building up a city called Zion. He
          saw that in process of time the people of Zion would become
          sanctified before the Lord, that the Lord would come and dwell in
          their midst and that by and by, after the city had existed 365
          years, it with all its people, would be taken up to heaven. And
          all the days of Zion in the days of Enoch, says the new
          translation, was 365 years, making Enoch 420 years old when he
          and his people were translated, which is older than the age given
          him in the uninspired translation.
          In this new translation we have also a much greater history of
          the creation of the world than is given in the uninspired
          translation made by the forty-seven men employed by King James.
          In that book we have a very short history of that great event;
          but the inspired translation shows that the periods of time
          called days, in which the several portions of the work of
          creation were preformed, were not by any means of such limited
          duration as the days we speak of, but from what is revealed in
          the Book of Abraham, they were probably periods of one thousand
          years each. God might have been for the space of a thousand years
          in organizing a certain portion of this creation, and that was
          called the evening and the morning of the first day, according to
          the Lord's reckoning, one day being with him as a thousand years
          and a thousand years as one day. By and by another day's work was
          performed, which I do not suppose was a day of twenty-four hours,
          but an indefinite period of time, called the second day--the
          evening and the morning of the second day. By and by the third
          day's work was done, and then there was the evening and the
          morning of the third day. Three thousand years probably, passed
          away in the performance of these three days' work. In the fourth
          day the Lord permitted the sun and moon to shine to give light to
          the earth. What regulated the evening and the morning the first
          three days we do not know, for neither sun nor moon were
          permitted to shine until the fourth day. I have no doubt the Lord
          has a variety of methods of producing light? The new translation
          gives us some information on this subject, for there we read
          that, "I the Lord created darkness on the face of the "great
          deep." In King James' translation it says darkness was on the
          face of the great deep, and I, the Lord, said, "let there be
          light, and there was light." Now how did the Lord create this
          darkness? He has a power, the same as he had in causing darkness
          three days and nights over this american land. But before that
          darkness was created what produced light? It must have been light
          here on this earth, and probably was so thousands of years before
          the Lord created darkness; and then he had the means of producing
          darkness, and afterwards of clearing it away, and then called it
          morning. But how long that morning had existed we do not know,
          unless we appeal to the Book of Abraham, translated by Joseph
          Smith from Egyptian papyrus. That tells us in plainness that the
          way the Lord and the celestial host reckoned time, was by the
          revolutions of a certain great central body called Kolob, which
          had one revolution on its axis in a thousand of our years, and
          that was one day with the Lord, and when the Lord said to Adam,
          "In the day thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die." the Book
          of Abraham says it was not yet given unto man the true reckoning
          of time, and that it was reckoned after the Lord's time that is
          one thousand years with us was a day with him, and that Adam, if
          he partook of the forbidden fruit, was to die before that day of
          a thousand years should expire. Hence when we go back to the
          history of the creation, we find that the Lord was not in such a
          great hurry as many suppose, but that he took indefinite periods
          of long duration to construct this world, and to gather together
          the elements by the laws of gravitation to lay the foundation and
          form the nucleus thereof, and when he saw that all things were
          ready and properly prepared, he then placed the man in the Garden
          of Eden to rule over all animals, fish and fowls, and to have
          dominion over the whole face of the earth.
          There is another very curious thing revealed in Joseph Smith's
          translation, and one that explains some mysterious passages in
          the first and second chapter of Genesis. In the first chapter of
          Generis in King James' translation we read that on the fifth day
          the Lord made the whales, the fish and the fowls of the air. On
          the sixth day he made the animals, beasts and creeping things,
          and last of all he made man, male and female. Now read along in
          King James' translation to the seventh day, and we are told that
          there was not a man to till the ground, yet he had made them male
          and female on the sixth day. Now, where were they made? They were
          made in heaven first. All the children of men, male and female,
          all the spirits of beasts, fowls, fish and creeping things were
          made spiritually in heaven before they were placed temporally
          here on the earth, and the spiritual creation differs from the
          temporal creation. The new translation says that man was the very
          first flesh made here on the earth; whereas, according to the
          account in King James' translation the flesh of beasts, fowls and
          fish was made on the fifth day, before man was made. But in the
          great temporal work of placing man on the earth, he was the first
          flesh formed and placed here among all the works of God. He had
          made the spirits of fish, fowls and beast, but none of them were
          permitted to come to the earth in their fleshy tabernacles until
          man, the great masterpiece, was placed here--then they were
          brought before him--for him to give names to them.
          In the work of creation the first is last and the last first. God
          made the spiritual part of this creation during these six days'
          work that we read of; then he commenced the temporal work on the
          seventh day. He planted the garden on the seventh day; he placed
          man in that garden on the seventh day; formed the beasts and
          brought them before the man on the seventh day, all this being
          the temporal work, the first being spiritual. Not so in the last
          of his work--the great work that is to come. When the seventh
          millennium shall arrive the Lord will redeem man and bring him
          forth from the grave, and he will begin to redeem this creation
          not making it entirely immortal and spiritual, like a sea of
          glass. It will exist for a thousand years in a temporal
          condition, as it was before the Fall. This will be the first of
          his temporal work in the last days. By and by when the millennium
          has passed, and the earth passes away and dies and its elements
          are melted with fervent heart, and there is no place found for it
          as an organized body, he will again speak and there will be
          another creation--a creation of this earth out of the old
          materials; in other words a resurrection of the earth, a literal
          resurrection. That will be the last of his work. In the morning
          of creation spiritual first, and lastly temporal. But in the
          ending temporal first in the redemption, and lastly spiritual,
          which will be the perfection or ending of his work.
          There are a great many things that God has revealed to us as
          Latter-day Saints, and it would be well for us, for our Elders
          and for all, to search these revelations, to prepare their minds
          to understand what God intends to do with our creation, and those
          who are prepared to inherit it, when it is made new. We, if
          faithful, shall inherit it in its temporal condition before the
          millennium passes away. Though our bodies may go down to the
          grave, God will bring us forth. He will redeem us and bring
          together bone to its bone, organize the flesh, sinews, muscles
          and every part of the body in its proper place, cover it with
          skin, cause the breath to enter into us, and the Spirit from on
          high to quicken us, and the human spirit, that will dwell in a
          celestial paradise, to return and take possession of the body.
          Then we shall inhabit the earth, not at first in its glorified
          state--that state which eventually awaits it, but in the
          beginning of its redemption in its temporal condition during the
          thousand years, of which the work before the Fall was typical.
          God bless you. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 15 / John
          Taylor, January 5, 1873
                            John Taylor, January 5, 1873
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER JOHN TAYLOR,
             Delivered in the 13th Ward Assembly Rooms, Salt Lake City,
                         Sunday Afternoon, January 5, 1873.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          I take pleasure in meeting with the Saints. I like to break bread
          with them in commemoration of the broken body of our Lord and
          Savior Jesus Christ, and also to partake of the cup in
          remembrance of his shed blood, and then to reflect upon the
          associations connected therewith: our relationship to God through
          our Lord Jesus Christ; our relationship to each other as members
          of the body of Christ, and our hopes concerning the future; the
          second appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ, when, we are given to
          understand, he will gird himself and wait upon us, and we shall
          eat bread and drink wine with him in his Father's kingdom. I like
          to reflect upon all these and a thousand other things connected
          with the salvation, happiness and exaltation of the Saints of God
          in this world, and in the world to come.
          We have one day set apart in seven for the worship of God, and I
          think it a very great mercy we have, for we can thus draw aside
          from the world, its cares, perplexities and anxieties, and, as
          rational, intelligent, immortal beings, reflect upon something
          pertaining to the future. We are very much engaged, generally, in
          relation to things of time and sense. Our hearts, feelings and
          affections seem to be drawn out in this direction, and these are
          the only things which a great many people have in view. Jesus, in
          speaking to his disciples, tells them not to take any thought
          about what they shall eat or drink, or wherewithal they shall be
          clothed, for, said he, after all these things the Gentiles seek.
          We, of course, must take this as being specifically addressed to
          his disciples under the circumstances in which they were then
          placed; the principle involved in his words is nevertheless true.
          Says he, "Consider the lilies of the field, they toil not,
          neither do they spin, and yet Solomon in all his glory was not
          arrayed like one of these." Again, he says, reflect upon the
          fowls of the air, they do not sow, nor reap, nor gather into
          barns, yet your heavenly Father takes care of them, and will he
          not also take care of you, O ye of little faith?
          There is something beautiful in reflecting upon many of these
          subjects, and something, very frequently, that is quite in
          harmony with our feelings when they are in accord with the Spirit
          of truth and the light of revelation. We feel, then, that we live
          in God, and as the Scriptures say, that in him we move and have
          our being. If we have life, or health, or possessions; if we have
          children, and friends, and homes; if we have the light of truth,
          the blessings of the everlasting Gospel, the revelations of God,
          the Holy Pri