Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17
                               Journal of Discourses,
                                      Volume 17
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER JOHN TAYLOR,
          Delivered in the Fourteenth Ward Assembly Rooms, Salt Lake City,
                         Sunday Afternoon, February 1, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                         [CONTINUED FROM PAGE 376, VOL. 16.]
          John the Revelator, when on the Isle of Patmos, wrapt in
          prophetic vision, said--"I saw another angel flying in the midst
          of heaven, having the everlasting Gospel to preach to them that
          dwell upon the earth, to every nation, kindred, tongue and
          people, crying with a loud voice, 'Fear God and give glory to
          him, for the hour of his judgment is come.'" He also saw a time
          when a certain power "would make war with the Saints, and prevail
          against them, and they should be given into his hand until a
          time, times and the dividing of a time."
          Well then, to come back, to accommodate my strange friend,
          whoever he may be, I will say that we, the Latter-day Saints,
          believe this Gospel just as Jesus taught it. We believe in faith
          in the Lord Jesus Christ, and that we should reverence him as the
          Son of his heavenly Father and our Father. We believe in the
          ordinances that he introduced, and that were practiced by his
          disciples; we believe in the same Spirit and revelation that they
          believed in. I do not wish to argue these matters, or to go into
          details, for time would fail on the present occasion; but the
          Scriptures are before us, and I shall only attempt to touch upon
          some of the principles that Jesus enunciated, and which were
          taught by him and his disciples; and it is for believing in God
          and Jesus Christ, in prophecy and revelation, that we are
          continually arraigned before the world as impostors and
          deceivers. We believe in being honest to ourselves and with every
          body, whether they are with us or not; we believe in men acting
          all the time as though they were in the presence of God and holy
          angels, and that for all their acts they will be brought to
          judgment, for we believe that God will bring men into judgment
          "for every word and every secret thought." We believe a good deal
          as David says--Who is he that can dwell with devouring fire, and
          among everlasting burnings? That man who has feared God in his
          heart, and who has not lied in his heart, that man who will swear
          to his own hurt and change not, a pure, virtuous, holy man who
          regards the rights of others as he regards his own; a man who
          will concede to others all that he would ask for himself, and who
          seeks to promote the welfare of the human family.
          The Elders of this Church have been called, as the disciples of
          Jesus were in former times, to go and preach the Gospel without
          purse and script. I have traveled hundreds and thousands of miles
          on this errand myself, and I see men all around me here who have
          done the same. What for? To benefit mankind, to tear away the
          veil of ignorance, to combat error, to reveal truth, to make
          known the Divine will, to tell to the human family that God has
          spoken, that angels have appeared, that the heavens have been
          opened, that light and intelligence have been communicated to
          man, that the everlasting Gospel has been restored, and that we,
          in this age, can enjoy the same blessings that the Saints enjoyed
          in former days, and to point out to them the way of life and
          salvation. We have received this commission from our God, and we
          have endeavored faithfully to fulfill it, so that our blood may
          be clear, and that when we come to stand before the Great
          Eloheim, when all nations shall be gathered together, we can say,
          "Oh God, we have finished the work which thou gavest us to do."
          What else? We are standing now rather in a political capacity.
          How is this? We cannot help ourselves, the Gospel told us to
          gather together. Do the Scriptures say anything about it? Yes;
          but if they did not, and God gave us that command, the silence of
          the Scriptures would make no difference at all. But they do, for
          the ancient Prophets had a view of the gathering of the Saints in
          the Latter day; they saw them flocking to the mountains like
          doves to the windows; and through them the Lord declared that he
          would gather his people "from the east and from the west, from
          the north and from the south." It is said--"I will take them one
          of a city and two of a family and bring them to Zion, and give
          them pastors after my own heart, who will feed them with
          knowledge and understanding;" and in speaking of the calamities
          of the last days he says that in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem
          there shall be deliverance." But we gathered because the
          revelations given through our Prophet commanded us to do so,
          these revelations agreeing with those given on the same subject
          Standing in this capacity, we form a large body of people. We
          have lived in different places, and as the believers in the
          Gospel in other ages were persecuted, so have we been; and having
          been persecuted and driven we have come here, as Geo. A. Smith
          said on a certain occasion, "Because we could not help it." We
          could not live in Nauvoo, yet we neither injured nor robbed
          anybody, neither did we interfere with anybody's rights. They
          drove us from Missouri and from Illinois, and here we are, and
          what now? We were on Mexican territory when we arrived here,
          having been forced to flee from the United States because we
          could not have protection. Why was it? Who can tell why it was
          that people who strewed their garments and spread branches of
          palm trees in the path of Jesus, crying, "Hosanna, blessed be he
          that cometh in the name of the Lord," should cry, a short time
          after--"Crucify him, crucify him?" Said Pilate, "I wash my hands
          of this just man's blood;" and the people said, "let his blood be
          upon us and our children." Terribly have they realized that
          invocation, for the avenging hand of the Almighty has been heavy
          upon them, and in every nation in which they have sojourned, they
          have been robbed, stripped, their property confiscated, and they
          have been deprived of all the rights of men. The time will come
          when God's wrath will be satisfied towards them, and when they
          will again be his elect people and gathered to their own land,
          even to Jerusalem, where, as the Prophet says, "The measuring
          line shall go forth, and little boys and girls shall again play
          in the streets of that city;" and when the Son of God will
          descend and "set his feet on the Mount of Olives, and it will
          cleave in twain, and there will be a great valley, and they will
          flee from before him like as they fled in the days of Oziah, King
          of Judah;" and "the Lord our God," we are told, "will come and
          all his Saints with him," and there will be deliverance in Zion
          and in Jerusalem in the remnant whom the Lord our God shall
          Well, we are here in a political capacity, inhabiting a
          Territory, and forming an integral part of the United States.
          Whom do we interfere with? Nobody. Do we rob or pillage anybody,
          or interfere with the rights of any? No. Do we make incursions on
          the citizens of surrounding Territories? No, we interfere with
          the civil or religious rights of no persons in this or any other
          city or Territory; we never did, we do not now; but we can not
          help being in the capacity that we occupy to-day. We form a body
          politic, and have necessarily become a Territory, and we could
          not help ourselves if we would. But we do not interfere with
          anybody, we observe all good and wholesome law. People will lie
          about us; but that makes no difference, they lied about Jesus.
          Our enemies say--"You are a bad people, and that is the reason we
          persecute you." That is what the enemies of Jesus said about him;
          it was not because he was good; you never saw a religious
          persecution got up on that account, all such persecutions have
          been "because of the wickedness of the people." the Scribes and
          Pharisees, after seeing Jesus heal the blind man, said--"Give God
          the glory, for we know this man is a sinner, it is true that he
          cast out devils, but he does it through Beelzebub, the prince of
          devils." Well, if they persecuted the Lord of the house, they
          will persecute the members of his household; if they do these
          things in the green tree, what will they do in the dry? The fact
          is, there is, and always has been, and always will be, an
          antagonism between truth and error, light and darkness, between
          the servants of God and the servants of the adversary. The devil
          is called the father of lies, and he delights therein. What
          difference does that make to us, what do we care about it? Very
          little. But suppose we are oppressed. We have stood it before and
          we can stand it again. Suppose they should pass proscriptive laws
          against us. All right, if the nation can stand it we can. I will
          risk upholding and standing by correct principles which emanate
          from God. We will cleave to truth, honor, holiness, and to all
          the principles that God has revealed to us, and we will go on
          increasing in every good.
          This nation and other nations will be overthrown, not because of
          their virtue, but because of their corruption and iniquity. The
          time will come, for the prophecies will be fulfilled, when
          kingdoms will be destroyed, thrones cast down and the powers of
          the earth shaken, and God's wrath will be kindled against the
          nations of the earth, and it is for us to maintain correct
          principles, political, religious and social, and to feel towards
          all men as God feels. He makes the sun to shine on the just as
          well as on the unjust; and if he has enlightened our minds and
          put us in possession of more correct principles than others have,
          let us be thankful and adore the God of Israel. Let us thank our
          heavenly Father for his goodness towards us in making us
          acquainted with the principles of the everlasting Gospel, and let
          us go on from strength to strength, from purity to purity, from
          virtue to virtue, from intelligence to intelligence; and when the
          nations shall fall and crumble, Zion shall arise and shine, and
          the power of God shall be manifest among his people. No man can
          overturn or permanently hurt those who do right. They may kill
          some of our bodies, but that is all they can do. We shall live
          and shout among the assembled throng, in the eternal heavens,
          "Hosanna, blessed be the God of Israel," and his kingdom shall
          grow and increase until the kingdoms of this world shall become
          the kingdoms of our God and his Christ, and he will rule and
          reign for ever and ever.
          May God help us to be faithful in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / Orson
          Hyde, February 8, 1874
                            Orson Hyde, February 8, 1874
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER ORSON HYDE,
          Delivered in the Fourteenth Ward Assembly Rooms, Salt Lake City,
                          Sunday Evening, February 8, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                                   WORD OF WISDOM.
          I rejoice very much, brethren and sisters, at the opportunity we
          enjoy to-night of meeting together to worship the Lord our God,
          and to wait upon him, that we may renew our strength. It is the
          desire of my heart to do all I can to inspire in you a living
          faith in God, and I am sorry to say that there are those in our
          midst, against whom I have no particular charge to make, but who,
          by reason of the favors which fortune or this world has bestowed
          upon them, have become weak and sick in the faith, and who, I may
          say, have almost no faith at all. I feel on this occasion that if
          wealth would destroy what little faith I have I would rather that
          it would take to itself wings and fly beyond my reach. I have no
          faith to boast of, but what little faith I may possess I think
          more of than I do of my wealth of this world, for the wealth of
          this world will not carry me successfully through the dark valley
          of the shadow of death; it will not open to me the portals of
          bliss, but real and genuine faith in God will accomplish this. I
          remember once, in Nauvoo, when we felt ourselves happy and
          fortunate if we could get half a bushel of meal to make mush of,
          the Prophet Joseph Smith, talking to some of us at the house of
          brother John Taylor, said--"Brethren, we are pretty tight run
          now, but the time will come when you will have so much money that
          you will be weary with counting it, and you will be tried with
          riches;" and I sometimes think that perhaps the preface to that
          time has now arrived, and that the Saints will soon be tried with
          riches; but if riches would kill our prospects of eternal life by
          alienating us from the Priesthood and kingdom of God, I say it
          would be far better for us to remain like Lazarus, and that all
          our fine things should perish like the dew, and we come down to
          the bedrock of faith, and trust in the true and living God. The
          question is whether we have to come there in order to inherit
          eternal life. I will read a little of the words of our Saviour,
          as recorded in the 6th chapter of Matthew. Said he--"Take no
          thought, saying what shall we eat or what shall we drink, or
          wherewithal shall we be clothed, for after all these things do
          the Gentiles seek, for your heavenly Father knoweth ye have need
          of these things, but seek ye first the kingdom of God and his
          righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you. Take
          therefore no thought for the morrow, for the morrow shall take
          thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the
          evil thereof."
          There are many Saints at this time who are laboring to acquire
          wealth; and the kingdom, in the hearts of a good many, has become
          a secondary consideration; if we were to reverse this order of
          proceeding and seek the kingdom of God first, we could then put
          our heavenly Father to the proof whether all these things shall
          be added to us, and thus also test the truth of our religion, and
          I believe that this would be a legitimate way to test it to our
          I have heard several very able discourses, by good men, showing
          that unless our exports equal our imports, we are not making
          headway financially. This is all very good so far as it goes, but
          reasoning of that kind is not our Savior's, it is the reasoning
          of this world, and so far as this world is concerned, their
          reasoning, if correct is just as good as any other reasoning; but
          if it is not correct, and we are swerved by its force and power
          from the line marked out for us to walk by, we shall become the
          losers. I wish now to refer you to certain events that have
          transpired in days gone by, and then many of you may tell me by
          what financial calculations these things happened, and whether
          they were brought down to the very nicety of worldly reasoning,
          or whether they were left open to the providences of our God.
          Once on a time there was a great famine in Samaria, and so sore
          was that famine that a mule's head sold for four score pieces of
          silver in the market, and a cab of dove's dung sold for food in
          the market, I can not recollect how much. We should consider it
          pretty much of a task or penalty to be compelled to use an
          article like that for food; but the people of Samaria were sorely
          distressed with famine, and which way to turn to save themselves
          they knew not. About this time, the King of Syria, with a large
          army, came to besiege the city, and there was a mighty host of
          them, and they brought everything in the shape of food that was
          necessary for the comfort and happiness of man; and although the
          famine was so sore among the Samaritans, the old Prophet, Elisha
          I think it was, told them that on the next day meal should be
          sold in the gate of their city at very low figures, lower than it
          had ever been know to be sold before. A certain nobleman, who
          heard the prophecy of Elisha expressed his doubt of its truth,
          and he said that if the windows of heaven were opened and meal
          poured down from above it could not fall to such low figures. Now
          see what he got by doubting the words of the Prophet--said Elisha
          to him--"Your eyes shall see it, but you shall not taste it."
          That night the Lord sent forth the angels of his presence and
          they made a rustling in the trees, and sounds like horses' hoofs
          and chariots, as if the whole country had combined to go out to
          battle against the Syrians, and they did not know what to make of
          it, and they were frightened, and fled, leaving almost every
          thing they had brought with them in the borders of the town; and
          as they went, the rustling of the trees and the noise of the
          horses and chariots seemed to pursue them, and in order to make
          their burdens as light as possible, they threw away everything
          they had with them, and their track was strewed with everything
          good and desirable. The next morning the people of Samaria went
          out and brought the spoils into the market, and it was
          overstocked with provisions, and the word of the Lord through the
          Prophet was fulfilled.
          Now, you see, the Lord knew they had eaten mules' heads long
          enough, and that they had need of something more palatable; he
          had had the matter under advisement, no doubt, when the crusade
          was inaugurated against the people of Samaria, and he, in all
          probability, inspired, them to take abundant supplies, that they
          might feel all the more confident on account of their great
          numbers being so well provided for. They no doubt calculated that
          they had the sure thing, little thinking that God was making them
          pack animals to take to his people what they needed. Their Father
          in heaven knew that they had need of them, and he sent them, and
          the people of Samaria brought them into market and behold and lo
          the multitude rushed together just as hungry people will, and
          this nobleman came out also, and he was trodden down under foot
          and stamped to death--he saw it but he never tasted it. That is
          the reward of those who disbelieve the Prophets of God; it was so
          then, and if the same thing does not occur in every instance
          something of a similar character is sure to take place. There was
          no living faith in that man, he could not believe the testimony
          of the Prophets, and in this he was like some of our--what shall
          I say, great men, whose faith is weak and sickly, and they think
          they know it all, and can chalk out right and left that which
          would be best for building up the kingdom of God.
                 Well, after the flight of Sennacherib and his hosts,
          the starving multitudes of Samaria had an abundant supply of
          food. By what financial calculation was this brought about? Was
          it by worldly financiering, or was it by the bounteous
          dispensation of kind heaven, who, disregarding worldly
          technicalities, sent a full supply to administer to and supply
          the wants of those who put their trust in Him, for at that time
          the people of Samaria stood fairly before him, and he plead their
          Said the Savior--"Take no thought what ye shall eat or what ye
          shall drink, or wherewithal ye shall be clothed, for after all
          these things do the Gentiles seek." Have the Gentiles come here
          to make money and to become wealthy? They say they have; I am
          told that that is their sole errand. I have not the least
          objection to it, but I have an objection to my brethren and
          sisters adopting their spirit by which their faith withers and
          becomes like a dried reed. The Lord said to Joseph Smith
          once--"As I live, saith the Lord, I give not unto you that ye
          shall live after the manner of the world." Are we seeking to live
          after the manner of the world by our trading and trafficking? I
          do not know, however, that there is anything objectionable about
          legitimate, honorable trading, and I am not going to speak
          against it; but in these days it is a pretty rare thing to find
          an honorable dealer. There may be, and undoubtedly there are, men
          who do nothing but honorable business transactions, but most
          business men are eager to lay up a fortune, and to get rich in a
          short time. Some of our merchants think they ought to get rich in
          from five to ten years, and then retire; but in honorable
          business transactions it takes almost a lifetime to amass a
          fortune. I will not, however, speak of things that occurred in
          old times, but will come down to our own experience.
          I recollect when we were forced away from Nauvoo, at the point of
          the bayonet, and when we crossed the river to the Iowa side there
          were hundreds of our people camped along the shore, and what had
          they to eat, or to make themselves comfortable with, in the
          scorching sun and burning with fevers? Nothing. We wanted meat
          and other comforts, but we had not the means to procure them, and
          the Lord in mercy sent clouds of quails right into camp. They
          came into the tents, flew into the wagons, rested on the wagon
          wheels, ox yokes and wagon tongues, and our little children could
          catch them, and there was an abundant supply of meat for the time
          being. Who financiered that, and by what calculation of two and
          two make four did it happen? it was the mercy and generosity of
          kind Providence. After the people arrived here in Salt Lake, they
          had pretty hard times. I was not one of the honored ones first
          here, but I arrived soon after, and I can recollect very well
          hearing of the hard times, when the brethren and sisters were
          forced to dig roots, and boil up thistletops, and anything that
          could be converted in the seething pot into food for the stomach.
          In those days the rations of our people were very short indeed.
          The Lord was aware of the position of the Saints in those times,
          he knew that they craved and had need of the necessaries and
          comforts of life, and he provided a way for them to obtain them.
          He opened the mines of California, and he caused the news to fly
          eastward, and this inspired the people of the East, almost en
          masse, to go to the El Dorado of the West to secure the precious
          metals. I happened to be on the borders at the time the
          excitement was in progress, and having crossed the Plains once or
          twice, people came to me to know what they should load with. I
          told them to take plenty of flour, for that would be good anyhow,
          and if they took more than they could carry they could trade it
          with the Indians to good advantage for something that they
          needed. I also told them to take plenty of bacon, the very best
          that they could bring; plenty of sugar, and also plenty of coffee
          and tea, we were not quite so conscientious in those days about
          using tea and coffee as we profess to be now. I also told them to
          take plenty of clothing, such as shirts, overcoats, blankets and
          everything that would keep the body warm; and I told them that
          tools of every kind would be very convenient and almost
          indispensable, such as spades, shovels, planes, saws, augurs,
          chisels, and everything that a carpenter needs, for said I--"When
          you get to the end of your journey you may not find everything to
          your hand that you want, and these things will be very convenient
          for you to build with." And I gave them this counsel in good
          faith, for I thought if they did not feel disposed to carry all
          these things through, they could very readily exchange them in
          our valley for something that our folks could spare and which the
          emigrants would find useful.
          Well, they fitted up train after train with these staple
          articles, and to use a steamboat phrase, they loaded to the very
          guards, and when many of them reached here, having been retarded
          by their heavy loads, it was so late that they said--"If we
          attempt to go through to California with this outfit, we shall be
          swamped in the snows of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, and so we
          must leave it here." They had brought it just where God wanted
          it, for said he--"I knew you had need of these things;" and while
          many of those who brought them along were good, honorable men, it
          so happened in the providence of God that his people were
          abundantly supplied.
          Did not brother Kimball prophecy here once, in a time of the
          greatest strait, that goods and merchandize of every kind would
          be so cheap and plentiful within a certain time, that they would
          have to be piled up on the way side? Yes, and his prediction came
          true, and the merchandize had to be placed by the wayside because
          there were not houses enough to put it in. Well, when the
          emigrants got here with their jaded teams, they were glad to
          trade them off. Said they--"Here gentlemen are the dry goods,
          merchandize, tools, and other things we have brought along, they
          are at your service, give us a pack mule and a pack-saddle, a
          lariat and a pair of spurs that we may go on our way." This was
          the way matters were arranged in many instances, and there was no
          fault to find, we did the best we could under the circumstances,
          and they did the best they were obliged to for us.
          Who financiered that? Was that on the principle of two and two
          make four. I do not object at all to that principle, but one is
          the result of human skill and wisdom, the other is based upon
          unshaken faith in God. That is what I am coming to--unshaken
          faith in God, which in this case, in our own experience, brought
          deliverance to the Saints for they were well supplied with tools,
          wagons, clothing and all they needed to make them comfortable.
          Our community was small then, a few trains heavily laden were
          sufficient to supply it, but now it would take a number of
          railroad trains. We are growing beyond our faith, we are taking
          thought for to-morrow too much.
          To illustrate this matter I will suppose that I say to my
          sons--"Here, my boys, I want you to go and plough, take care of
          the stock, or make the garden beautiful;" and they
          reply--"Father, we want some boots, pants and hats." "I tell them
          I know they have need of these things, but I want them to attend
          to what I require of them without first receiving the boots,
          pants and hats. What would you think of these boys if, because
          their father did not give them what they thought the needed just
          at the time, they should say "we will strike out on our own hook,
          for we must have, and are determined to have these things?" How
          many of us are there now who feel as though we could chalk out
          and financier our own course irrespective of what the Prophet
          says? Perhaps some would be grieved if their faith in the
          ordinances of the Gospel and in the servants of God were
          questioned; but, as I said in the start, to come down to the
          bedrock, leaving fiction out of the question, how many of us are
          there who are ready to strike hands with the Prophet of God and
          to hang on to him blow high, or blow low, come coarse or come
          fine? There are some men who have acquired fortunes and who are
          rich, and I have reason to believe, though perhaps good men in
          every other respect, there will be a divorce between them and
          their silver and gold, or I fear they may not enter the kingdom
          of God. The rich man may say--"Divorced! is it possible that I
          must be divorced from that to which I am so devotedly
          attached--my riches--in order that I may obtain life
          In further illustration of the subject we have under
          consideration, I will quote the saying of the Savior, "Lay not up
          for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust can
          corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal, but lay up
          for yourselves treasures in heaven where neither moth nor rust
          can corrupt, nor thieves break through and steal." If heaven be
          beyond the bounds of time and space, as some of our religious
          friends believe, it would require a long arm to deposit our
          treasures there; but I apprehend that the heaven here referred to
          is not so far away. I believe it is near, and that when I yield
          my treasures to the powers that govern the kingdom of God I lay
          up treasure in heaven. Whenever I see the hungry and feed him,
          the naked and clothe him, the sick and distressed and administer
          to their wants I feel that I am laying up treasure in heaven.
          When I am educating my children and embellishing their minds and
          fitting them for usefulness, I am laying up treasures in heaven.
          I would ask that little boy, who is well educated and well
          trained, "'What thief can enter in and steal the knowledge you
          have got?" It is beyond the power of the thief to steal, it is
          out of his reach, that treasure is laid up in heaven, for where
          is there a place more sacred than the hearts of the rising
          generation which beat with purity, and with love to their
          parents, and with love to God and his kingdom? What better place
          can you find in which to deposit treasures than that? But all our
          obligations are not pointing to one source or quarter, there are
          many ways in which we can lay up treasures in heaven by doing
          good here on the earth.
          The Bible says, "Take no thought beforehand, what ye shall eat or
          what ye shall drink, or wherewithal ye shall be clothed." Says
          one-"If we are to take no thought beforehand I would like to know
          how the farmer will ever contemplate sowing his seed if he does
          not look with an eye to harvest, if he does not take some
          forethought?" I do not see any necessity of this. I know that the
          times and seasons roll around, and when Spring comes my natural
          senses tell me then is the time to plough, and I go and plough,
          because I know it is my duty to plough. I keep on ploughing day
          after day until I get through and then I commence sowing seed. It
          is no use for me to give myself any anxiety about the harvest--I
          have no control over that, as the Scriptures say--"Paul may plant
          and Apollos water, but God giveth the increase," and I, with all
          my figuring, can not swell the kernels of wheat and cause them to
          germinate. I can do my duty in the time and the season thereof,
          but I must leave the issue with God. When I see that the grain
          wants watering I can turn on the water, but never mind to-morrow,
          let that take care of itself. As each day rolls around I can do
          the duties thereof, but to-morrow is beyond my reach or control.
          We, however, are looking to great results from our present labors
          as Latter-day Saints, and perhaps there is no particular harm in
          this; but it is far safer for us to do the duties of to-day than
          to neglect them by dreaming of the glory that is to be revealed
          in the future. That is in safe-keeping. The hands of the Lord are
          strong and true, they will keep the reward in reserve for the
          faithful;, and none can rob them of it. Let us do the work of
          to-day, then, and our heavenly father knoweth that we have need
          of all these things.
          There is one very peculiar saying of our Savior in the New
          Testament which I believe I will quote. Said the Savior, "It is
          easier for a camel; to go through the eye of a needle than for a
          rich man to enter into the kingdom of God." This is a saying
          which very few people who live now seem to believe, for,
          apparently, the main object for which most people labor is to get
          rich, and hence, according to the saying of Jesus, to keep
          themselves out of the kingdom of God. I know men in this Church
          whom I would have gladly seen here to-night, but I do not see
          them. I suppose they have so much riches they have no time to
          attend meeting. Maybe they are here, I hope so, my sight is not
          very keen, and I can not see all over the room; but I do hope and
          pray that I shall never get so much wealth that I shall have no
          time to attend meetings, or so much as to keep me busy taking
          care of it, so that I shall not have time to enrich my heart with
          the knowledge of the Lord our God by putting myself in the way to
          obtain it. "Easier for a camel to enter the eye of a needle than
          for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God." Said the
          disciples "Who then can be saved?" The Savior answered, "That
          which is impossible with man is possible with God."
          Now I want to look a little at the possibilities and
          impossibilities of the matter, not that I claim to understand
          everything, but sometimes a train of thought comes through my
          mind which cheers and does me good, That man who claims to be
          under the jurisdiction of an authority that he professes to
          believe is paramount with God, and yet is engaged in this way,
          that way and the other way, in getting rich so that he has not
          time to honor it, the question is, Can that man enter into the
          kingdom of God? I am not going to say, but I will bring up
          another case that, perhaps, may have a bearing on, and serve to
          illustrate this subject.
          There was a certain rich man who fared sumptuously every day. He
          had abundance of everything that was good. Then there was a poor
          man named Lazarus, who lay at his gate, and the dogs came and
          licked his sores. This poor man would have been glad of the
          crumbs that fell from the rich man's table. By the by poor
          Lazarus died and was carried by angels into Abraham's bosom. I
          was once conversing with a Presbyterian minister on the subject
          of polygamy. Said I to him--"My dear sir, where do you expect to
          go when you die?" He said--"To some good place, I hope." "To
          heaven, I suppose?" "Yes,'" said he, "I hope to go there." Said
          I--"Right into Abraham's bosom." Well, he said, figuratively,
          that was correct. Said I, "If you go right to Abraham's bosom how
          do you expect to doge polygamy? If you get into Abraham's bosom
          you get into a curious place." By this time his argument was
          exhausted and our conversation closed. But Lazarus went to
          Abraham's bosom, I suppose he has a pretty large bosom and a
          large heart, large enough to embrace all the faithful from his
          day down to the end of time, for in him and his seed shall all
          the families of the earth be blessed.
          By and by the rich man died, and it is said that he lifted up his
          eyes in hell, or in torment, and he saw Abraham afar off with
          Lazarus in his bosom: Said he--"Father Abraham, send Lazarus that
          he may dip the tip of his finger in water that he may cool my
          tongue, for I am tormented in this flame." Abraham replied, and
          he spoke to him very kindly and fatherly, "Son, remember that
          thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise
          Lazarus evil things, but now he is comforted and thou art
          tormented. And besides all this, between us and you there is a
          great gulf fixed, so that they who would pass from hence to you
          cannot, neither can they pass to us who would come from thence."
          There, then, we see illustrated the fate of the man who obtained
          wealth independent of the Lord Almighty. He obtained wealth and
          enjoyed it, and down he went to hell, while that poor man who, in
          this life, lay at the rich man's gate and desired to be fed with
          the crumbs that fell from his table, was carried by angels into
          Abraham's bosom. Probably, in life, this rich man has oppressed
          and dealt wrongfully by that poor man, I cannot tell how that
          was, but at any rate he went to hell.
          Now, let me ask you who the man is who may be rich, and still
          enter into the kingdom of God. There was father Abraham himself,
          none of you will dispute that he was a rich man while here, yet
          there he was, on the other side of the great gulf, prepared to
          welcome Lazarus to happiness and heaven. But how did Abraham get
          rich? Was it by cheating and defrauding, by calculating and
          financiering? or did he get it by doing his duty and trusting in
          God to bestow upon him what he saw fit. He trusted in the Lord,
          and the Lord gave to him all the Land of Canaan, for an
          everlasting possession and promised him that his seed should be
          as numerous as the stars in the sky, or the sands on the sea
          shore. The Lord made Abraham rich, Abraham did not do it himself;
          he did not cheat anybody, but in the providences of God he was
          elevated and made rich. Why, there are some men who can not sleep
          nights for laying plans to get rich, but I would advise them, if
          they want to get riches that will last for ever, just to lay
          plans to build up the kingdom of God, or in other words to take
          the advice of Jesus--"Seek first the kingdom of God and his
          righteousness, and all things else shall be added unto you." I
          used to think--I can not get married until I am rich, for I can
          not support a wife; and it was not half so hard to support a wife
          in the days when I married as it is now, because there was not
          half the pride or fashion to support then that there are now.
          Then I did not make money very fast, and I thought that if I
          waited until I got rich before I married I should wait too long,
          and finally I concluded that I would marry and take hold with my
          wife and we would work together. It is certainly better to have
          two oxen than one, for if one is yoked up at one end and the
          other end of the yoke drags, and when one wheel is off and the
          other is on, the point of one axle drags in the sand, and it is a
          complete nothing at all, that is just what it is. Well then I
          would give the same advice to my young brethren and sisters that
          I acted upon myself, and that is--Get married and get rich
          afterwards, and dispense with this fashion that so many are
          anxious to follow. We cannot very well, unless we are born
          princes, heirs or millionaires, support the fashion of the
          present day and prosper, and we had better dispense with it. I
          like to see everybody cleanly and comfortable, but all this
          display and paraphernalia that fashion demands of its votaries
          seems to me like clogging the wheels and creating discomfort
          rather than comfort. When I was in the old country, I recollect
          hearing a lady say--"Some people wrap themselves up and put on so
          much that they are completely clogged. If you draw a net over a
          fish, how can it swim in the water? It is freedom they want, and
          it is a light covering we want, especially in warm weather." I
          like to see persons neat and clean, and would rather seem them
          thus than adorned in fine feathers, dresses, caps and jewelry. I
          believe God's people will be so. I have no particular fault to
          find, I am only telling what I think would be good.
          The man that goes along and does his duty, and, without straining
          a point, picks up honestly and fairly the blessings and means
          that God strews in his pathway, can appreciate and do good with
          his means; and as long as he keeps an open heart and is willing
          to do good, God will continue to put wealth in this way, and
          wealth obtained in this way, no matter how much, if it swells as
          large as the mountains on the east here, can not keep its
          possessor out of the kingdom, because it is the gift of God, and
          not the fruits of over-reaching dishonesty. God is not going to
          keep me out of his kingdom because I have wealth, no matter how
          much, if I obtain it honestly in his sight, and strive
          continually to do good with it. The reason why men of God were
          rich in old times was, that they were willing and desirous that
          God should rule, govern and control them and their means, while
          the miserable calculators after the fashion of the world shut God
          out of the question altogether. Such men are a stink in the
          nostrils of the Almighty, and he will hurl them from his
          presence, and they will find that it is easier for a camel to go
          through the eye of a needle that for them to enter into His
          kingdom. This is my faith, and I hope it will last me all the way
          through and for ever, that if we will keep the commandments of
          God, build up his kingdom, and lay up treasure in heaven by doing
          good with whatever means and ability God may entrust us with
          here, wealth will roll in upon us from quarters we are not aware
          of, and in a way that eye has not seen nor ear heard, neither has
          it entered into the heart of man to conceive. All the world is
          for the Saints, and if they only take the right course and do as
          they are required, wealth will roll in upon them and can not go
          anywhere else. The world say the Latter-day Saints are the lowest
          of all people, and just for argument's sake we will grant it; but
          then, if we are so, that fact is only a proof of our excellence,
          for everything that has weight and worth rolls down and finds the
          centre, the froth only rises to the top. I will venture to say
          that if you take a dollar and place it on the edge of a nice
          washbasin, it will roll down to the centre, and if we are there,
          we shall all be in the right place. It is the meek and lowly who
          are to inherit the earth and the kingdom of God, and enjoy the
          gifts of heaven.
          I have spoken once to-day before pretty freely, and I begin to
          feel a little sore about the sides, and I do not think I shall
          talk to you much longer on this occasion. I was talking this
          afternoon about the ante-diluvians. How strong they were in their
          own estimation! They were able to carve out their own destiny,
          and to amass and spend their own fortunes; but when the flood
          came they and their wealth went together. They were not in the
          ark, they had no interest in it whatever. I suppose they were a
          good deal as some people are at the present day. I saw a little
          ticket out here--I did not stop to read it--but in passing I read
          the words--"Not one cent for Tithing." I suppose that was the
          motto of the ante-diluvians. "Not one cent for Tithing," not one
          iota to build up the kingdom of God. Well, they went to
          I wish to say to my brethren I have had considerable experience
          in the kingdom of God, and I have had some experience that a man
          never ought to have, and let me here ask my brethren and sisters
          if everything could be arranged to suit all, where under the
          heavens would there be any trial of our integrity? There would be
          not such thing. As the methodist say--"When I can read my title
          clear to mansions in the skies," and neither stumbling-block nor
          obstacle in the way, I shall begin to think that I am on the
          wrong road, for I do know that in the way of exaltation and
          eternal life there are stumbling-blocks and difficulties to
          overcome, and if I keep in that way I shall have some things to
          swallow that are unpleasant and uncomfortable. But they will
          appear smaller and less difficult to overcome, if we swallow less
          whisky. I would advise all my brethren to avoid it, and to have
          not connection with it; and if we see those who are feeble in
          faith, and more inclined to find fault than they are to approve,
          let us labor with them and do all we can to bring them back to a
          sense of their obligations.
               "Take no thought for the morrow, what ye shall eat, or what
          ye shall drink, nor wherewithal shall ye be clothed," but go to,
          and do just as God, through your brethren, tells you, and never
          be the means of administering a blow or doing one act that shall
          cause a division among the Saints of God, for says Jesus--"Except
          you are one you are not mine," and how many are there in this
          city and throughout the country who are kind of half Jew and half
          Ashdod, and more Ashdod than Jew in many instances? Do not
          understand me to apply this to the body of the Saints, but to
          them that are pairing off, the disaffected and dissatisfied, and
          those who seem as if they had just swallowed a dose of fishhooks,
          and were choking over it. I would advise such to grease it well,
          and it will go down. Let the oil of the grace of God be applied,
          and there is no obstacle that we can not overcome. I say then,
          let us never allow ourselves to be the entering wedge to divide
          the people of God. If we cannot overcome a little difficulty or a
          little trial, how much faith have we got? Not much. I say to my
          brethren--God bless you; and to the weak, the Lord, through the
          Prophet, says, "Be strong." Be as weak as you have a mind to, but
          when there is need of strength put it on. If we have the right
          spirit, the more strength we need the more we shall have, but
          keep the fire burning, and may the Lord God of heaven bless you.
          I could say many more things, but I have said as many as I should
          say. May the Lord bless you here in the 14th Ward. I used to know
          all the people who were here, but now I do not know a tithing of
          them; they have either grown up out of my knowledge, or else
          there is another set, or else we have lost our faith and our
          countenances are changed. I do not know which. Well now, let
          these pipes and tobacco alone, and let whisky alone; and sisters
          let tea and coffee alone. I know I am touching you in a vital
          place, but will you do it? "Oh dear, I shall die if I can not
          have some." Well, we have got to die once, and it had better be
          in a good cause than a bad one. Then let us keep the Word of
          Wisdom, and keep ourselves unspotted from the world and live to
          the honor and glory of God, that when we have got through, having
          really complied with the will of heaven, we may see opening
          before us fields of everlasting bliss, and crowns and dominions
          beyond calculation opening in the wide expanse of eternity. Oh,
          shall we come short, or shall we not?
          Brethren and sisters, live to God, and may God bless you. I want
          to live until the power of God will be felt and acknowledged in
          this world, and that day is not far remote. May God bless us for
          ever, is my prayer in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 /
          William C. Dunbar, January 4, 1874
                              . Dunbar, January 4, 1874
                         REMARKS BY ELDER WILLIAM C. DUNBAR,
            Delivered in the Twentieth Ward School-house, Salt Lake City,
                         Sunday Afternoon, January 4, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                                REMARKS TO THE YOUNG
          Last Sunday evening I asked the privilege from the Bishop to give
          a little lesson to the young, and to the old and middle-aged
          about the young. It is something new for me to ask for the
          privilege of speaking, for my weakness has generally led me to
          decline speaking when asked to do so; but inasmuch as I have
          assumed the task, I trust I shall be assisted by that Spirit that
          illuminates the understanding, and that it will on this occasion
          dictate things which will be for our good.
          I have heard some say that they thought we made too much fuss and
          talk about the rising generation; but when we take into
          consideration the circumstances in which we are placed as
          Latter-day Saints, we shall see that this is not the case. We are
          connected with the kingdom of God, established in these last days
          never to be cast down again. We are not connected with a system
          of religion which is to expire when we expire, but with one which
          is to exist when we are gone, and there is a prospect of a great
          many of us departing this life before very many years more pass
          away. There are thousands and tens of thousands of us who
          embraced the Gospel soon after the Church was organized by the
          Prophet Joseph, and who are now arriving at an age when we must
          naturally expect that we will not live long upon the earth,
          hence, in the minds of all such who reflect, there is an anxiety
          about the young. Why? Because they have an anxiety about the
          kingdom of God being perpetuated; they have anxiety about the
          young, realizing that the responsibility of bearing off this
          kingdom and its principles must shortly rest on their shoulders,
          when they will have to preach the Gospel and to administer the
          laws and ordinances of the kingdom of God, and to bear off its
          principles while they shall live upon the earth, hence the
          anxiety of the old members of the Church to know that their
          children are in a position to be able to perform the duties
          devolving upon them as well as, if not better than, their
          We have around us a multitude of children growing up. We are in
          the habit of calling them children and of treating them as such,
          and all the time our speeches to them are as if directed to
          children; but all of a sudden it has come to our notice that some
          of these children have arrived at the years of accountability.
          Some of our sons, for instance, are as old as we were ourselves
          when we went forth to preach the Gospel, and we see around us a
          multitude of young men and women who were baptized when they were
          eight years old, and who, almost unnoticed, have arrived at years
          when they begin to think and act for themselves. Among them are
          those who have a knowledge, by the gift of the Holy Ghost, that
          the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the Church and
          work of God, and perhaps a great proportion of them have this
          knowledge. Then, there are a great many of them who say they have
          not this knowledge, but they believe "Mormonism" is true because
          father and mother say it is; that is, they believe it by
          education and not by conviction and through understanding it for
          themselves. Among these children to which I am referring is a
          small number who have come in contact with certain influences,
          and who are becoming skeptical and unbelieving as to the
          principles of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
          We may shut our eyes to these things, but they are facts, and the
          questions is, How shall we treat them? If we knew that two
          Gentiles were in this meeting, we would so arrange our discourse
          as to be suitable to them, and let all the rest of the
          congregation, who already know these principles, sit and listen.
          But it appears to me that we have to take a new departure in
          regard to our preaching. We must adapt ourselves to
          circumstances, and remember that there are those amongst us of
          the kind I have mentioned. It is true our children have been
          raised and grounded, as it were, in the principles of
          "Mormonism:" they have grown up and have scarcely heard anything
          else. It is not these little ones here that I am so much
          concerned about, but it is the young men and the young women,
          from sixteen to twenty-two or twenty-three years of age, who go
          out in life for themselves. Perhaps the sisters go to service in
          various parts of the city and among various kinds of people; and
          the young men, they go to learn trades--learn to be carpenters,
          masons, blacksmiths, or some other occupation. They have to go
          out in life, and they meet with a great many influences now that
          were not to be found in our midst years ago; for amongst us now
          are those who are straining every effort to undermine the
          education that we have been giving to our children. When I say
          education, I mean the religious training which we have been
          giving them. There are men in our midst who consider they have a
          mission to perform, and that mission is to undermine our
          religion. There are many amongst us now who do not believe in and
          who care nothing about our religion. Some of these have come to
          dig in the mountains, to extract the silver and get a fortune;
          they care nothing about religion of any kind. There are others
          here who consider they have a mission to undermine "Mormonism,"
          and who think the only way for them to do that is by undermining
          the education of our your people. They say, "We can only reach
          the young, so far as faith in "Mormonism" is concerned; but if we
          succeed in making the rising generation skeptical, "Mormonism"
          will be a thing of the past and almost forgotten in the next
          generation." There is a class of so-called religious men whose
          aim is to make our young folks skeptical; there is the apostate,
          who is either an infidel or a deist, working to accomplish the
          same object; there is also the Gentile, who is a deist or a
          free-thinker, and does not believe in God or in a life hereafter;
          and they all feel that it is their special mission to undermine
          what we have been doing during the last twenty years to establish
          in the minds of the rising generation the truth of the principles
          which we have espoused, and which we know to be true.
          Now, if it has taken all the knowledge that we have, all the
          testimony that we have received from the Almighty, to carry us
          through to the present moment; if it has taken the power of the
          Holy Ghost and the Spirit of God to enable us to stand and resist
          the various opposing influences by which we have been assailed
          since we obeyed the Gospel, it will take the same testimony and
          the same understanding to enable the rising generation to carry
          off this kingdom triumphantly in spite of all the combined
          opposition that may be brought against it. Hence the necessity,
          my brethren and sisters, of being exercised about the young, and
          hence the reason that they should have a knowledge of the
          principles of truth that we have received, that when we are
          departing this life we can lay our hands upon them and bless the,
          and set them apart for the work that we have about closed. Then
          the fathers in Israel can say--"Here are our sons, who will carry
          out what we have begun;" and the mothers can say--"Here are our
          daughters, who will carry out what we have commenced." Under such
          circumstances the feelings of the dying will be those of joy and
          pleasure, for they will know that they are leaving behind them a
          multitude upon whose hearts is ineffaceably impressed the
          conviction of the divinity of this work.
          I am pleased when I hear a young man or young woman testify that
          they know this is the kingdom of God; but I would not be pleased
          to hear them testify that they did know if they did not; I should
          not be pleased to hear them say they believed if they did not
          believe. It might cost me sorrow to hear my son or my daughter,
          or your son or your daughter, say, "I do not know that
          'Mormonism' is true" or "I do not believe it is true," or to see
          them in a kind of betwixt and between state of mind, not knowing
          what to believe; but at the same time I would rather they would
          honestly say just what is the fact, than to have them
          hypocritically say one things and mean another. I would not like
          to see this among children or among men and women. But if a
          person is really sick and we can find out what the disease is,
          then we can apply the remedy; if, however, the patient insists
          that he is not sick, and that nothing is the matter with him, we
          can not touch him. Hence I say, if we know the circumstance in
          which we are placed, we know what remedy to apply. A young man or
          young woman will ask this question, for instance, which is very
          natural--"Father, I hear you say that all the sects in the
          Christian world are wrong except the 'Mormons;' but yet I find,
          when I attend the Episcopal, Roman Catholic or Methodist church,
          that they quote from the very same Bible which you quote from.
          How is it that they are wrong? Do you recollect, brethren and
          sisters, how we were when first the Gospel reached our ears? One
          of the first questions that we asked of the Elder who preached to
          us was-"You say that 'Mormonism' only is right, but how is it
          that all these other sects and parties, who say they believe in
          God, the Bible and Jesus Christ, are wrong and you only are
          right?" This was a kind of mystery to us, it caused a query to
          arise in our minds, and we could not exactly understand it. This
          brings to my remembrance a figure that was very frequently used
          by the Elders when preaching the Gospel in the old country in
          early days. To explain this seeming mystery to the minds of the
          new converts, they would liken the Gospel and Church of Jesus
          Christ and its organization, to a watch, with all its complicated
          machinery, including wheels, pivots and pins, face, fingers and
          mainspring. All these properly combined will correctly tell the
          time of day. "But," said the Elders, "Suppose a man comes along
          and takes one of these wheels away, and another man takes another
          wheel, and another takes another wheel; another man takes a pin,
          and another another pin; another man takes a pivot, and another
          takes another pivot; one takes the face, another takes a finger,
          and another takes another finger, and so on, until finally the
          whole watch is divided up, say among six hundred different
          people, every one of them says--"I have got the watch, and I can
          tell the time of day." Says the watchmaker--"Do you think I am
          such a fool as to believe that any of you can tell the time of
          day? A watch can not tell the time unless it is combined and
          united together, every wheel and pivot in its place, with the
          mainspring in good order. It takes the whole machine to tell the
          time of day, and when a man says--'I have got the watch,' and he
          has only got a wheel, or pivot, or a pin, the face, mainspring,
          or case, he does not tell the truth, whether he knows it or not."
          So it is, my young friends and brethren and sisters, in regard to
          the Bible; every religious sect takes a part of it which suits
          them, and they all say they believe in it, and they have got the
          plan of salvation. For instance one sect or party will take faith
          in Jesus Christ, and say that is all that is necessary for the
          salvation of man. Another sect will perhaps take baptism, and say
          that faith and baptism are necessary for salvation, and throw
          away something else; and thus you find the whole Christian world,
          although professing to believe in the same Savior and in the same
          Bible, opposed to each other. And then the "Mormons" come along
          and they say--"All these sects are wrong and we are right." They
          say to the sects--"Why, you have not got the watch, you have only
          got one of the wheels, one of the pins or fingers, or you have
          only go the case, and there is nothing in it, and it requires the
          case with all its contents properly arranged to tell the time of
          day correctly; in other words, if you would teach the people how
          to be saved in the kingdom of God, you must teach them to obey
          every principle of the plan of salvation." That is precisely what
          the Elders of this Church do, and that makes the grand
          distinction and difference between them and the so-called
          religious teachers of the day.
          Now to illustrate this. You attend a church or a chapel, and you
          perhaps hear a minister preach from the 16th chapter of St.
          Mark's Gospel, where the Apostles are commanded to go and preach
          the Gospel to every creature, with a promise that he that
          believeth and is baptized shall be saved, &c. Some of our young
          people have not read the Bible a great deal. It is true that many
          of them who attend Sunday school to read it, but as a general
          thing the class I am referring to do not attend Sunday school.
          They consider that they are too old, that they know too much, or
          that it is rather humiliating to associate with children; and,
          with a few exceptions, those I mean are not of the kind who have
          read the Bible; but you will find, no matter how much it may
          chagrin us to admit it, that they would rather read the Ledger,
          Bowbells, or some other book of that character, than the Bible,
          and consequently when they hear a sectarian minister quote from
          it, that he that believeth in Jesus shall be saved, they take it
          for granted that he is reading the Bible, when, if they had read
          and studied its pages for themselves, they would know that he
          only quotes part of it. Is it not singular that sectarian
          ministers, as a general thing manage to forget that little word
          "baptism" when exhorting sinners to repent and be saved? Is it
          not singular that the divines of the day, as a general thing,
          although they have made the Bible their study, and have gone to
          college on purpose to study how to explain its contents, should
          stop short and say, "He that believeth shall be saved," leaving
          out all about baptism.
          What is the difference, in this respect, between the "Mormon" and
          the sectarian teacher? The "Mormon" teacher reads the whole of
          it--the text and the context, and he declares to the people that
          he that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; and he that
          believeth not shall be condemned. Is it not singular that men
          professing to be servants of God and ministers of salvation, when
          they quote Scripture, should only quote part of it? This is the
          course pursued by the ministers of nearly every denomination in
          Christendom. One will take a pivot or a wheel, and leave all the
          rest of the machinery; another will do the same, and so on, and
          if we were to examine the whole, we should perhaps find that all
          of the principles of the Gospel are scattered amongst them, but
          all of them reject some portions of it.
          On the day of Pentecost, when a large multitude of people where
          assembled at Jerusalem, the Apostles of the Savior, who had been
          endowed with power from on high, plainly an unmistakably declared
          unto them the way of life and salvation. In answer to the earnest
          and anxious inquiries of many on the occasion, Peter, the chief
          of the Apostles, said--"Repent and be baptized, every one of you,
          for the remission of your sins, and you shall receive the Holy
          Ghost," &c. But how is this Scripture quoted by those who take
          only one wheel or pivot? They say--"Repent and be saved;" or,
          "Believe in Jesus and be saved;" but somehow or other, either
          through a defective memory, or from some other cause, they fail
          to quote the rest of it.
          Here is the difference between the sectarians and us who are
          called "Mormons." We take the whole chapter, we want the whole
          watch. We know we can not tell the time correctly if we only take
          a part of it, and we know we can not get full salvation in the
          celestial kingdom of God unless we obey the whole Gospel, which
          is the power of God unto salvation unto all who believe it enough
          to obey it.
          The Apostle Paul, in writing to the Corinthians, lays down the
          organization of the Church, as established by its founder,
          Christ. He says that in the Church are placed Apostles, Prophets,
          Evangelists, Pastors and Teachers. What for? For the work of the
          ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, and for the
          perfecting of the Saints, until we all come to the unity of the
          faith. The Apostle also says that there are in the Church a
          diversity of gifts, such as tongues, the interpretation of
          tongues, healing, knowledge, faith, wisdom, &c. Now, how much
          does a sectarian pick out of this when he quotes it? He takes
          Pastors and Teachers, but he throws away Apostles, Prophets,
          gifts, helps, tongues, healings, &c.; in fact, he claims to have
          the whole watch, when, at the same time, he has but one little
          pin or pivot, and throws away the principal part of the
          Did you every think of these things my brethren and sisters? If
          you would read the Bible and New Testament you would get an
          understanding of them just as we did. How was that? Most of us
          were trained to read the Bible, and when we heard the Latter-day
          Saints preach we said,--"This is different from anything we ever
          heard before. The Bible seems like a new book, we never knew
          there were such things in it. Our ministers never taught us these
          principles, and when we mention them to them they say they are
          done away, and no longer needed;" in other words they say that a
          watch does not need a mainspring now; it was necessary 1800 years
          ago for a watch to have a mainspring and a variety of wheels and
          pins all united together in one case, but now it is not
          necessary, for you can tell the time of day with one of the
          fingers, or a pin, or with the empty case. We who had read the
          New Testament, when we heard the Elders explain the organization
          of this Church, could at once see that it was in accordance with
          the Scripture pattern, and that it was different to the churches
          of Christendom; but the reason that our young men and women are
          sometimes in a quandary when they hear sectarians preach is
          because they have not read the Scriptures, and hence when they
          hear a man in a pulpit make an assertion, they are not able to
          tell whether he quotes the whole or only a part of the passage,
          and hence the necessity for them to make themselves more
          acquainted with the Bible.
          When I was about seventeen years of age I first heard this Gospel
          preached by Elder Orson Pratt. He quoted from the Acts of the
          Apostles, and although I had another word of testimony within me
          that what he said was correct, that he was a servant of God and
          that Joseph Smith had had the ministration of angels, when he
          quoted from the Scriptures I could not say whether it was so or
          not, because I had never read the Bible. I had never been allowed
          to read it, for reasons which I stated this afternoon, but I went
          home directly and read the Bible, and found that what he said was
          true. Then I went to another place of worship and I heard a man
          quote the same chapter, but somehow or other he failed to quote
          the whole passage and quoted only a little bit of it. This led
          some of us to investigate, and we did so just as we would any
          other branch of knowledge. No young man would think of reading
          Robinson Crusoe in order to make himself acquainted with
          geography, and neither would he read the history of Scotland in
          order to master algebra; and no young man or young woman would
          think of studying any branch of science or art by reading novels.
          But if they really desired to acquire any branch of knowledge
          they would, of course, procure works that treated on that
          subject, and make it a matter of earnest study. I know a man who
          did nothing but study grammar form the time he was fifteen years
          old until he was twenty-five. They used to call him "Old Syntax"
          for a by-name. So it is with our young--they must not expect to
          study "Mormonism" by reading novels, but they must read the
          Bible, Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, Millennial Star,
          Orson Pratt's Works, the Voice of Warning and many others. These
          are the works our children must study if they ever find out for
          themselves the truth of the principles of "Mormonism." And
          besides doing this, they must also pray unto the Almighty for the
          testimony of his Holy Spirit. How did we, now growing old in the
          work, get a knowledge of its truth? Many of us, after hearing the
          testimony of the servants of God, went into our closets, and some
          of us labored for months with the almighty before we obtained
          that knowledge. We prayed "Lord, if the testimony of this man is
          true, make it known unto us, by some means or another;" and we
          finally received impressions which induced us to repent and be
          baptized, and we had hands laid upon us for the gift of the Holy
          Ghost; and still we labored, and prayed, and contended for the
          faith once delivered to the Saints, until God in his mercy
          manifested himself unto us in such a manner that we knew this was
          his work and kingdom.
          Now, if a young man rises and bears testimony that he knows this
          is the kingdom of God, perhaps some other young man may make fun
          and say, "How do you know it?" Perhaps he cannot explain, for the
          revelations of God to the mind and soul of man can not always be
          explained, any more than Columbus could explain when he asserted
          there was a vast continent that had not then been discovered, or
          than the philosopher could explain to unbelievers that the globe
          was round and not flat; they could not understand it without
          studying natural laws as he had done. The testimony of the Holy
          Ghost and the Revelations of God give knowledge to the mind of
          him upon whom they are conferred but he can not explain their
          operations to others. In the Scriptures we are told that the
          things of man are known by the spirit of man, and the things of
          God only by the Spirit of God, and the promise to those who obey
          the Gospel is that they shall know for themselves of its truth,
          and this is the only condition on which the fulfillment of this
          promise can be obtained. Said Jesus--"Do my will and you shall
          know of the doctrine, whether it is of God, or whether I speak of
          Our children were baptized when they were eight years old, but
          that was more by our agency than theirs. The gift of the Holy
          Ghost was conferred upon them, and that Spirit is within them,
          and if they understood its whisperings and dictates I believe
          that they would admit they know a great deal more than they now
          think they do; and if they would heed its teachings it would lead
          them in the was of eternal life. But there is a great difference
          between the "Mormons" and the rest of the religious world when we
          come to the fundamental principles of all religion, namely,
          belief in God. The sectarian world say that they believe in God,
          but that he has neither body, parts nor passions, and yet there
          are three persons in the godhead--Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. If
          you were to attend the Sabbath schools of our friends who are not
          of us, you would probably hear these principles taught. But this
          is not in accordance with the Bible, for that teaches that God
          made man in his own image. If you want to know what the Almighty
          looks like, look at man, only he is in a fallen condition and
          clothed with humanity. Jesus said that he was the express image
          and likeness of his Father. The "Mormons" believe this, but the
          sectarians believe in a God without Body, parts and passions;
          they believe in Jesus sitting at the right hand of a God without
          body parts and passions; and they believe in a God who loves the
          righteous, and who is angry with the wicked every day, but yet he
          has neither body, parts nor passions. I am not saying this with a
          design to deride, or anything of the kind, but I am simply
          stating facts as they are. The "Mormons" believe these things
          just as the Bible tells them; they believe that God is a great
          and exalted Being, filled with knowledge and understanding, that
          he created this earth, but not out of nothing. One of the
          principles taught by the religious world of Christendom, is that
          the earth was made out of nothing, in six of our days. No wonder,
          as Brother Maeser said the other Sunday evening, that people
          consider that science and religion are opposed to each other.
          True science and true religion are not opposed to each other;
          false religion and true science are opposed to each other, and it
          is this very fact which has caused infidelity to spread with such
          rapidity of late years. As men become acquainted with the laws of
          nature, which are the laws of God, they are compelled to lay
          false religion aside, and consequently they say religion is all
          nonsense. For instance, the chemist finds that he can not bring
          one particle of matter from nonentity neither can he annihilate
          one particle, therefore he disbelieves in the world being created
          out of nothing. When a man descends into the bowels of the earth
          and, through science, becomes acquainted with the laws which
          govern the materials there contained, he understands that the
          earth could not be made out of nothing; he also understand that
          it could not be made in six of our days, and consequently, rather
          than throw aside science, the truth of which he can demonstrate,
          he throws religion to one side, the truth of which he can not
          demonstrate. But if he were in possession of the true religion he
          would not have to throw it away, neither would he have to abandon
          his science because they would not harmonize.
          We Latter-day Saints do not believe the world was created out of
          nothing, but that it was created just upon the same principle
          that a builder creates a house, that is, there is matter in
          existence and he organizes it and changes its condition suitable
          to the circumstances that he wishes to use it for; the builder
          changes the bricks, lumber and other material into a house or
          other structure; the Almighty by his power and wisdom takes
          existing matter and combines it and makes a world; and he places
          the stars and the sun and moon in the firmament, giving to each
          the laws by which its movements are governed. If we understand it
          we should see that it was all done upon true scientific
          principles. Scientific truth and God's truth are just the same,
          hence when a man becomes acquainted with science or the laws of
          nature he has to throw away his belief in a God without body,
          parts and passions, and in the estimation of the religious world,
          he becomes an infidel. But suppose he were to obey the Gospel as
          taught by the Latter-day Saints, what would be that consequence
          them? His science and religion would help and sustain each other,
          and would enable him to bear testimony to the wonderworking hand
          of God, not only in revealing the true principles of salvation,
          but also in revealing the laws of nature or the principles of
          science, and he would embrace both as emanations from the same
          great Deity.
          Here, my young brethren and sisters, is another great distinction
          and difference between the Latter-day Saints and the rest of the
          Religious World, and if you were to study the Bible sometimes--I
          do not say it is necessary to throw away every other book and
          study the Bible only--you would come to an understanding of these
          principles for yourselves, then you would know why your fathers
          and mothers declare that they knew "Mormonism" is true.
          I have endeavoured to drop a few hints, to show the necessity of
          our young people taking a course by which they may attain the
          same realizing sense of the truth of the Gospel and work of God
          which their seniors possess. If a son or a daughter belonging to
          any one of us should say--"Father, I know you have always taught
          me to believe that Joseph Smith was a true prophet, and you say
          that God has revealed it to you, but he has not revealed it to me
          and I do not know it," shall we get mad at them, and resort to
          coercion in order to make them believe as we believe? No, we may
          be sorry to hear them make such an avowal, but we must neither
          get mad nor use harsh language towards them, for that might drive
          them to do that which we are so anxious to prevent. We must treat
          them as men and women, or as rational, intelligent beings, and
          reason with them, and labor with and pray for them just as much
          as if we were sent to preach the Gospel to the world. That is the
          course I believe we, the fathers and mothers of Israel, should
          pursue with the rising generation.
          I have said all I desire to say on the present occasion. May God
          bless us! May the spirit of the Gospel rest upon our young, that
          they may be led to investigate its principles and come to an
          understanding thereof for themselves, that they may be prepared
          for the responsibilities that will rest upon those who will
          succeed us in carrying on the work of the Lord, and be enabled to
          bear it off triumphantly is my prayer in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / Orson
          Pratt, April 6, 1874
                             Orson Pratt, April 6, 1874
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER ORSON PRATT,
          Delivered at the Forty-fourth Annual Conference of the Church of
            Christ of Latter-day Saints, in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake
                           Monday Morning, April 6, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                                     THE KINGDOM
                                  LAMANITES HAD ALL
          Forty-four years ago to day, the kingdom of God was organized on
          this earth, for the last time, never to be broken up, never to be
          confounded or thrown down, but to continue from that time,
          henceforth and for ever, This kingdom was not organized by man,
          nor by the wisdom of man, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ,
          he having guided and directed, by revelation, everything in
          regard to its organization, and bestowed authority upon his
          servants to perform the work, and they being only agents or
          instruments in his hands.
          All other Christian denominations for many long centuries, have
          been organized without revelation. The organizers of these
          various denominations did not even pretend that there was one
          sentence which had been received in their day from the Lord, in
          relation to the organization of their institutions, In this
          respect the Latter-day Saints differ widely from all Christian
          denominations! it is an essential difference, a peculiar
          characteristic, and one of the utmost importance. Every person
          with a little reflection, can see that without divine
          information, man is utterly unable to organize the Kingdom of God
          on the earth. He may organize kingdoms, empires, republics and
          various kinds of civil government and a great variety of
          governments in a religious capacity, and when he has organized
          them they are without foundation and authority. The Lord
          communicates nothing to them, but they are compelled to ponder
          over that which had been revealed in former ages, and get all the
          information they can from what God spake formerly to somebody
          else. We might as well, in the organization of a civil
          government, say, "the canon of laws is sealed up, we need no
          legislators or Congressmen," If the question be asked why we do
          not need them, the answer is, "Oh, we depend upon the laws which
          were made by our fathers; they are sufficient for our guide."
          Just fancy the people of this great republic being governed by
          the laws enacted in the first Congress after the revolutionary
          fathers framed the constitution Only think of all the people now
          appealing to those ancient laws, made before any of them were
          born, and having nothing further to govern them!
          This would just be as consistent as it would be to suppose that
          God some eighteen hundred years ago, gave all the information
          that he ever intended to give in relation to the government of
          His kingdom and his affairs here on the earth. You know that in
          civil governments laws are continually required, circumstances
          call them forth. Laws made last year are not always suitable to
          the circumstances of this year, and those made ten years ago,
          might be altogether unsuitable for events now happening, and
          hence the necessity of something new, direct from the law-making
          department. So in regard to the kingdom of God. God spake to the
          ancients, but many of the words he spake then are not binding
          upon the people now. Some few of the great moral principles
          revealed to the ancients are binding for ever, but the great
          majority of the revelations from Heaven were only suited to the
          individuals to whom they were given. Take, for instance, the case
          of Abram He was living in Chaldea, the land of his fathers. The
          Lord spake to him, and commanded him to arise and leave his
          native country, and journey to a strange land, which was promised
          to him for an inheritance. Now, I ask, was any other people upon
          the face of the whole earth bound to obey this divine law given
          to Abraham? No; it was suited to him and to him only. If we were
          all under this ancient law, then every one of us would have to go
          to Chaldea; and after we got their we should have to leave that
          country and go to some land which we should expect to receive for
          an inheritance, which would be the very height of absurdity.
          Again, when God led forth Abraham into the land of Palestine, we
          find that he not only communicated laws to him, but that he also
          made precious promises relating to him and his seed, which did
          not pertain to all the nations and kingdoms of the earth. God
          commanded Abraham on that occasion to arise, and to pass through
          the length and breadth of the land, and to go out on to a certain
          high place and to cast his eyes eastward and westward and
          northward and southward, for said the Lord unto him, "All this
          land which thou seest shall be given to thee, and to thy seed
          after thee for a possession." Under this law have I been
          commanded to go to the land of Palestine and walk through the
          length and breadth of the land? Never. Have you been commanded to
          do it? Never. It is not a law that is binding upon us, neither
          was it binding upon future generations after the days of Abraham.
          Again, when God made the promise to Abraham that he should have
          that land for a possession, and his literal seed after him, he
          did not mean you nor me, nor the generations of the earth who are
          not the literal descendants of Abraham.
          Again, when God revealed himself to Moses, and told him to go
          down into Egypt and deliver Israel from bondage, that was a law
          binding upon Moses and Moses alone. The Latter-day Saints are not
          under that law, neither are any other people. So we might
          continue to multiply instances by thousands where God spake to
          individuals, and they, and they alone, were the persons who were
          to give heed to his laws. Again, where he spoke in some cases to
          the nation of Israel, Israel and Israel alone could obey those
          laws. But sometimes he would reveal to an individual or to a
          people certain great moral principles that were binding upon them
          and upon all people unto the ends of the earth, when they were
          made manifest unto them. Such laws are everlasting in their
          nature. Sometimes God revealed ordinances as well as commandments
          and laws. These ordinances were binding just as far as God
          revealed them for the people to attend to. For instance, the law
          of circumcision was binding upon Abraham and his seed, and was to
          be continued for a certain season, but by and by it was to be
          superseded by some other. God also revealed, in the days of the
          introduction of the Gospel, many eternal laws, different from
          those that had been revealed in former times. He revealed many
          things afresh and anew when he came personally on the earth,
          which had also been revealed prior to his day. For instance, we
          will take the law of faith and repentance. These principles were
          taught in every dispensation, and were binding upon all people in
          the four quarters of the earth, and in all generations before
          Jesus came; they were eternal principles, and were to be
          continued forever. We will take, again, the law of baptism for
          the remission of sins. Wherever the Gospel was preached this
          ordinance was binding upon the people. Wherever men were sent
          forth with the fulness of the plan of salvation to declare to the
          children of men, the law of baptism accompanied that message, and
          all people, as well as Israel, were required to obey that sacred
          In the latter days, when God establishes his kingdom on the earth
          for the last time, there will be thousands and tens of thousands
          of precepts and commandments revealed to certain individuals,
          which will be binding upon them alone. Then there will be other
          commandments that will be adapted to all the Church, and they
          will be binding upon the Church and upon the Church alone. Then
          there will be certain other commandments that will be binding
          upon all nations, people and tongues, and blessed are they who
          give heed to the commandments and institutions and ordinances
          which pertain to them and which are adapted to their
          circumstances, and which are given for them to obey. But we will
          return again to the Church and kingdom.
          Forty-four years have rolled over our heads since God gave
          commandment to a young man, a youth to organize baptized
          believers into a Church, which was called the kingdom of God, not
          organized in its fulness, for there were not materials enough at
          that time to institute all the officers that were needed in the
          kingdom. The kingdom needed inspired Apostles, Seventies, High
          Priests after the order of Melchizedek; it needed the Priesthood
          of Aaron--the Levitical Priesthood, which the ancient Prophet
          said should be restored in the latter days. The kingdom needed
          all the appendages and blessing of these two Priesthoods, and
          there were not a sufficient number then baptized to make the
          organization perfect and complete; but so far as there were
          individuals the organization was commenced, although there were
          then only six members. Two of these were Apostles; called by the
          ministration of angels to be Apostles; ordained by the laying on
          of hands of immortal personages from the eternal worlds. Hence,
          being ordained by this high authority, called by this high and
          holy calling, and chosen to go forth and organize the kingdom,
          and to preach the message of life and salvation among the
          children of men, they were obedient; and the other four
          individuals were organized in connection with them, upon the
          foundation that had been laid by the Lord himself, and not upon a
          creed that had been concocted in some council of uninspired men;
          not upon some articles of faith that were framed by uninspired
          men to guide and govern them; but what they received was by
          direct revelation. Not one step was taken without obtaining a
          revelation in regard to the manner of proceeding in relation to
          the laying of this foundation.
          How very different this from the Methodists, the Baptists, the
          Presbyterians, the Church of England, and the various societies
          and denominations that exist throughout all the Protestant world;
          not one of them was organized in that way! Supposing that some of
          these Christian denomination should happen to get the form pretty
          nearly correct, and yet not have the authority, that would make
          all the difference. The form with the authority is one thing, and
          the form without the authority and divine appointment and
          ordination is another thing. One has power, but the other has
          not; one is recognized by the Lord almighty, but the other is
          only recognized by man. I think we can see the difference between
          man's churches and God's Churches, between man's organizations
          and God's organization. In the first place there never were
          people, since Adam was placed in the Garden of Eden to the
          present day, who were acknowledged of God, unless they were
          founded and directed and counseled by him; unless there were a
          Priesthood having authority from him; unless God spake to them,
          and sent his angels to them. There never was a people, in any age
          of the world, whom God recognized as his people, without these
          characteristics. Says one, "How very uncharitable you Latter-day
          Saints are! You exclude the whole of us, you do not except one of
          our churches or good Christian denominations, and there are very
          good, moral people in them." We do not dispute but what they are
          a very good, moral people; that is one thing, and a Christian
          Church is another. Morality is good in its place, and it must be
          in the Christian Church. Morality may exist outside of the
          Christian Church, but both can not exist together without God
          organizes the Church.
          Perhaps I have spoken sufficiently long upon the subject of the
          organization of the Church. I might enter fully into the
          investigation of these matters, and give you the particulars
          about the angels of God who descended from heaven and conferred
          the authority upon chosen vessels. I might tell you about the day
          which God set apart, and upon which he commanded that his Church
          should be organized, for the very day was mentioned by
          revelation. I might also relate to you many instructions that
          were given at that time to all the members of the kingdom of God.
          But I have other subjects upon my mind that seem to present
          themselves before me.
          There have been probably scores of revelations given from time to
          time during the last forty-four years, which are not binding now,
          neither were they binding upon all the people at the time they
          were given. For instance, God gave a revelation, through his
          servant Joseph, on the 14th day of November, 1830, to your humble
          servant now speaking, commanding him to go forth and preach the
          Gospel among the nations of the earth, preparing the way of the
          Lord for his second coming, and to lift up his voice, both long
          and loud, and cry repentance to this crooked and perverse
          generation. I ask this congregation if there is an individual
          present here, but your humble servant who is under this direct
          command? No. If you have been commanded to do the same, you have
          been commanded by a distinct revelation. The revelation given to
          me was not given to any other individual, and was not binding
          upon any other. So in regard to the gathering up of the Saints.
          We were dwelling in the State of New York, and on the second day
          of January, 1831, God commanded that all the Saints in that
          State, the State in which the Church was organized, and all who
          were dwelling in all the regions round about, should gather up to
          the State of Ohio. Is that a commandment binding upon any of this
          congregation? Not one of them, it was only suited to the
          circumstances that then existed, and when fulfilled it was not
          longer even binding upon them. The Lord gave a commandment after
          we had gathered up to the land of Kirtland, that some of his
          servants should go forth, two by two, preaching through Indiana,
          Ohio, Illinois and Missouri, that they should meet together in
          general Conference on the western boundaries of the State of
          Missouri, and that the Lord God would reveal unto them the land
          which should be given unto them for an everlasting inheritance.
          These persons were commanded to do this. This commandment was
          binding upon them and them alone. They were the individuals who
          were commanded to do this work--it was not required of the rest
          of the Church. They fulfilled their appointment--as many as were
          faithful went through, two by two, on different routes, preaching
          and calling upon the people to repent and be baptized, confirming
          them by the water side, and organizing Churches. Finally those
          persons thus commanded assembled in August and September, on the
          western boundaries of the State of Missouri, in Jackson County.
          Then the commandment was fulfilled; and it was no longer binding
          upon those to whom it was given. Thus you see that what is
          suitable for this month is not always suitable for next month,
          and what is suitable for to-day is not always suitable for
          to-morrow. It needs new revelation.
          When these missionaries assembled in Jackson County, the Prophet
          Joseph, being with them, inquired still further, and a
          commandment was given on that occasion, before the Church had
          gathered, except one small branch, called the Coalsville Branch,
          and that commandment was to be binding upon all the Latter-day
          Saints who should gather up to that land. What was it? That all
          the people who should gather to Jackson County, the land of their
          inheritance, should consecrate all their property, everything
          they had--they were to withhold nothing. Their gold and silver,
          their bedding, household furniture, their wearing apparel and
          everything they possessed was to be consecrated. That placed the
          people on a level, for when everything a people has is
          consecrated they are all equally rich. There is not one poor and
          another rich, for they all possess nothing. I do not know but you
          might call that poor; but they have something in common, namely,
          that which they have consecrated, and this brings me to an item
          which I happened to think of just about a half minute before I
          I will now read to you what took place on this American continent
          thirty-six years after the birth of Christ. Jesus appeared here
          on this continent and organized his Church. He chose twelve
          disciples and commanded them to go and preach the Gospel in both
          the land south and the land north, and they did so. This extract
          gives us a little information about the repentance of the
          "And it came to pass in the thirty and sixth year, the people
          were all converted unto the Lord, upon all the face of the land,
          both Nephites and Lamanites, and there were no contentions and
          disputations among them, and every man did deal justly one with
          another; and they had all things common among them, therefore
          they were not rich and poor, bond and free, but they were all
          made free, and partakers of the heavenly gift."
          Now, was not that a marvel? Perhaps you may ask how it was that
          they were all so easily converted. That would be a very natural
          question to arise in the minds of many, for they must have been a
          very different people from those living now-a-days. We have
          preached, year after year, and have only converted here and there
          one. But all those millions, inhabiting both North and South
          America, were converted unto the Lord. Was not that a wonderment?
          If I explain a little what took place beforehand, it will clear
          up the wonderment a little.
          Just before Christ was crucified in the land of Jerusalem, the
          people on this land had become exceedingly wicked, and it was
          foretold to them by their Prophets that, when Jesus, their
          Savior, should be crucified in the land of their fathers, there
          should be great destruction come upon those who were wicked in
          this land, and that many of their cities should be
          destroyed--they should be sunk and burned with fire, and God
          would visit them in great and terrible judgments if they did not
          repent and prepare for the coming of their Savior, for they
          expected him to appear after his resurrection. The wicked did not
          repent, and all these destructions came, just as the Prophets
          foretold. Darkness covered the face of this land for three days
          and three nights, while at Jerusalem it was only three hours.
          Three days and three nights they suffered darkness upon all the
          face of this land, and very many of their cities, which were
          great and populous, were sunk, and lakes came up instead of them;
          a great many were burned with fire, a great many were destroyed
          by terrible tempests, and a great destruction came upon the
          wicked portions of the people, who had stoned and put the
          Prophets to death, and only the more righteous portion of the
          people were spared.
          In the latter part of the year in which Jesus was put to death,
          he descended among a certain portion of the people on this
          continent, gathered in the northern part of what we term South
          America. He descended from heaven and stood in their midst; and
          on the next day, when a larger multitude were gathered together,
          he came a second time and there were a great many thousands on
          that occasion. He often appeared to them after that period,
          within the course of one or two years, and he chose twelve
          disciples, and so great was the power made manifest before those
          thousands, that when they went forth into the north and south and
          preached the word, according to the commandments of God, the more
          righteous portion of the people, who had been spared, and who had
          humbled themselves and partially repented, but did not understand
          the fulness of the Gospel, were easily converted, and that is the
          reason why all the people in North and South American were
          converted unto the Lord; and in the thirty-sixth year, reckoning
          from the birth of Jesus, they were not only all converted upon
          the face of this whole land, but they were all organized upon a
          common stock principle, and there were no poor among them, and
          they dealt justly one with another.
          Says one, "They did the same thing in the land of Jerusalem."
          Yes, but they did not keep it up in the land of Palestine--they
          seem to have failed, for we have no account that this common
          stock principle, as at first organized, continued among the
          Saints on the Asiatic Continent. Churches were built up in
          various parts of Asia and Europe, one in one place, another in
          another, and they all seem to have had property of their own; and
          I believe, myself, that they were unprepared, in their scattered
          condition, to enter into this order of things. There was too much
          wickedness at Ephesus, in Galatia, at Corinth, and in the various
          places where small branches were organized, to enter into this
          common stock principle, and carry it out successfully. But on
          this continent there was a fine opportunity, for all the people,
          millions and millions of them, were in the same faith. How
          easily, then, could they be guided and directed, and put in their
          property, and organize it as a common stock fund; and they did
          so, and were exceedingly blessed and prospered in their
          operation. And I will tell you how long it existed--about one
          hundred and sixty-five years. But in the year two hundred and one
          after the birth of Christ, the people began to be lifted up, on
          this continent, in pride and popularity, and began to withdraw
          their funds from this common stock, and take them into their own
          hands, and call them their own, and they continued to do this,
          until the great majority of the people had corrupted themselves
          and withdrawn form this order. Then after having broken up this
          common fund in a great measure, only a few individuals here and
          there still holding on to it, they became proud and highminded,
          and lifted up in their hearts, and looked down upon those who
          were not so prosperous as themselves, and in this way a
          distinction of classes was again introduced, and the rich began
          to persecute the poor; and thus they continued to apostatize,
          until, about three hundred and thirty-four years after Christ,
          they began to have great and terrible wars among themselves,
          which lasted about fifty years, during which millions of them
          were destroyed. Finally, they became so utterly wicked, so fully
          ripened for destruction, that one branch of the nation, called
          the Nephites, gathered their entire people around the hill
          Cumorah, in the State of New York, in Ontario County; and the
          Lamanites, the opposite army, gathered by millions in the same
          region. The two nations were four years in gathering their
          forces, during which no fighting took place; but at the end of
          that time, having marshalled all their hosts the fighting
          commenced, the Lamanites coming upon the Nephites, and destroying
          all of them, except a very few, who had previously deserted over
          to the Lamanites.
          Before this decisive battle the Nephites, who had kept records of
          their nation, written on gold plates, hid them up in the hill
          Cumorah, where they have lain from that day to this. Mormon
          committed a few plated to his son Moroni, who was a Prophet, and
          who survived the nation of the Nephites about thirty-six years,
          and he kept these few plates, while all the balance of them were
          hid up in that hill; and then, Moroni, being commanded of God,
          his up the few plates from which the Book of Mormon was
               I make mention of these circumstances for the purpose of
          showing you that, when people have been once enlightened as the
          Nephites were, and have had all things common, and have been
          blessed with an abundance together in harmony, until riches were
          poured out upon them in vast abundance, and then withdraw
          themselves from the order of God, they soon bring swift
          destruction upon their heads. We see the Nephites, after taking
          this course, descending lower and lower in their wickedness,
          going into idolatry, offering up human sacrifices unto their idol
          gods, and committing every species of abomination that they had
          ever know or heard of, all because they had been once enlightened
          and had apostatized from the truth, and withdrawn from the order
          of God, in which their forefathers had had a long experience.
          The Lord gave a caution to the Latter-day Saints, when he told
          them, in a revelation, given in 1831, to enter into the same
          order pertaining to our possessions in Jackson County. Prior to
          that, he gave us a promise, saying, that if we would be faithful
          we should become the richest of all people; but if we would not
          be faithful in keeping his commandments, but should become lifted
          up in the pride of our hearts, we should, perhaps, become like
          the Nephites of old. "Beware of pride," says the Lord, in one of
          these revelations, "lest you become like the Nephites of old."
          I have no doubt that you Latter-day Saints are the best people on
          the face of the earth. God has gathered you out from among the
          nations; you were the only people, to whom the message of life
          and salvation was sent, who received the missionaries of the Most
          High when they came to your respective nations. You not only
          received the Gospel of repentance and baptism, but you harkened
          to those missionaries and the counsels of God, and gathered to
          this land. Hence, you have done better than all other people, and
          you have been blessed above all other people. But there is
          danger, after having been made partakers of the Holy Ghost and
          having had the gifts of the Spirit made manifest more or less
          according to our faith, if we become lifted up in the pride of
          our hearts and think, because we have gathered an abundance of
          the wealth of this world, that we are a little better than our
          poor brother who labors eight or ten hours a day at the hardest
          kind of labor. Any person having the name of Latter-day Saint who
          feels that he is better than, and distinguishes himself from, the
          poor and supposes that he belongs to a little higher class than
          they, is in danger. "Beware of pride. lest you become like unto
          the Nephites of old."
          In order that this pride may be done away, there must necessarily
          be another order of things in regard to property.
          Why does pride exist at all? Let us make a little inquiry about
          this. Do you know the reason? It all arises out of the love of
          riches. This is what generally constitutes pride. Now supposing
          you were all brought on a level in regard to the property by a
          full consecration of everything that you have into a common stock
          fund, would there be among that number one who should thus
          consecrate all that he had, who would have anything to boast of
          above his neighbor? Not at all. He might have perhaps a hundred
          times more than another, to use as a steward or agent for this
          general fund; but when he has used it he has his living out of
          it--his food, his raiment, the necessaries and comforts of life,
          whether he handles hundreds of thousands or merely a small
          stewardship, for the man that takes charge of a great
          manufacturing establishment would require more funds than he who
          has a small farm, but the funds would not belong to him, he only
          has his food, raiment and the necessaries and comforts of life.
          But here is another branch of business, just as important, as far
          as it goes, as this large manufacturing establishment. What is
          it? To make mortar, to lay up our buildings, for without them we
          should soon suffer. The man who makes mortar, then, is just as
          honorable as the man who takes charge of a large establishment
          which requires five hundred thousand dollars to carry it on. But
          in both cases, the surplus of their labor, after taking therefrom
          the necessaries of life, goes to the common stock fund; and the
          man who has had charge of the large establishment has nothing
          that he can boast of over the man who makes mortar--one is just
          as rich as the other.
          But I know there are many Latter-day Saints who have formed an
          erroneous idea or opinion in regard to this common stock fund.
          Some for want of reflection, may suppose that every man and every
          woman must have the same fashioned houses to live in, or there
          would not be an equality; they must have the same amount of
          furniture, or there would not be an equality. Some may suppose
          that all must have the same kind of bedding and everything
          precisely alike or there would be no equality. But this is not
          the way God manifests himself in all the works of his hands. Go
          to the field, the pasture or meadow, and learn wisdom. Search
          from one end of the pasture to the other and see if you can find
          two blades of grass that are exactly alike. It can not be done,
          there is a little deviation, a little variety, and hence we see
          from this that God delights in variety. But because one blade of
          grass might be formed a little more pleasing to the eye than
          another, would the first have any right, if it could reason, to
          say, "I am above the other?" Not at all. It was made for a
          certain purpose, and so in regard to everything else. No two men
          upon the face of the earth have the same features. We have the
          general characteristics of the human form, and we do not look
          like the original of man according to Darwin's idea; we do not
          look like the monkey or baboon, from which Darwin says man
          originated. Men the world over, have many features bearing a
          general resemblance, and their form is moulded in the image of
          the Most High. But when you come to scan the features of man
          minutely, you will see some deviation in the countenances of all
          men throughout all creation. Now, are they not equal? Do those
          little distinguishing characteristics in the features make them
          unequal? Not in the least. Then, because it might fall to my lot
          to make mortar, and to another man's to take charge of a great
          store of merchandize, both of us being agents, that does not make
          the mercantile agent any better than the man who makes the
          mortar, and I should not expect to wear the same kind of apparel
          that the man did who was behind the counter. If I was make mortar
          I should not want on broadcloth, silk, or satin; I should want
          apparel adapted to the particular class of labor I was engaged
          in. Hence, there will be a distinction in these things.
          Then again, do you suppose that when we come together it would be
          pleasing in the sight of God for every man and every woman to
          have on a Quaker bonnet or dress, or to pattern after the Shaking
          Quakers; that each of the ladies should have on a ribbon that
          should come under the bonnet and be of just the same length? Not
          at all. God delights in variety; we see it throughout all the
          works of his hands, in every department of creation. Therefore
          men and women will dress according to their tastes, so far as
          they can get the means.
          You draw your means from the common stock fund, and if you have
          stewardships set apart to you to manage, and you make a little in
          the stewardships, the Bishops who take charge of these matters
          will not begin to enquire of you "Well, brother, what kind of a
          hat have you worn? Was it straw, and was the straw just so fine
          or just so coarse, or was it a palm leaf hat that you wore? I
          should like to know what kind of a hat band you have had? Was it
          a hat band having a bow knot, and, if so, was it any longer than
          your neighbors?" No such questions as these will be asked; but
          each man, each family in the stewardship, whatever they make, can
          exercise their own judgment in regard to many of these things, as
          they do now; and when you come together on Sunday, it is not
          expected that every man's and every woman's tastes would be to
          dress precisely like their neighbors, but have variety, and that
          out of the means of your stewardship.
          But when you come to render up an account of that stewardship to
          the Bishop at the end of the year, there may be some prominent,
          leading questions asked, but not about these little matters. It
          will be asked if you have squandered your stewardship
          unnecessarily; have you been very extravagant in things
          unnecessary, and neglected other things of importance? If you
          have done these things, you will be counted an unwise steward,
          and you will be reproved; and perhaps, if you have gone too far,
          you may be removed out of your stewardship, and another person
          more worthy may step into it, and you be dropped because of doing
          wrong. But there never will be any Bishop who has the Spirit of
          the living God upon him, who will inquire whether you have the
          same size stoves in your house, and the same kind of plates,
          knives, forks, and spoons as your neighbor; but you will have to
          give an account of those prominent items. That is the way I look
          at this common stock operation.
          Then again, I do not know that the common stock operation which
          God commanded us to enter into in Jackson County, Mo., will be
          suitable in the year 1874. I commenced by discourse by showing
          that what was suitable one year was not always suitable the next.
          I do not know but here in Utah it may be necessary to vary
          materially from the principles that were commanded to be observed
          in Jackson County, Mo. I do not know but we may be required here
          to not only consecrate all that we have, but even ourselves as
          well as the property we possess, so that we may be directed by
          the Bishops and their counselors, or whoever may be appointed, in
          regard to all our daily avocations. I do not know how it will be.
          I have not heard. Down in Jackson County they were not thus
          directed. Every man got his stewardship, and he occupied it, and
          rendered an account of the same from time to time. But I do not
          know but it may be necessary here in Utah that we should be
          directed oftener than once a year, it may be that we shall be
          told weekly, and perhaps in some cases daily; and perhaps the
          Bishop or overseer may say to-day, "Here, brother, I would like
          you to do so and so to-day," and to-morrow he comes along and
          says, "I would like you to stop that now; we have something else
          on hand; come with me, I will put in my hands as well as you,
          for, although you have selected me by your own voice to take
          charge, I am no better than you are, therefore I will take hold
          with you and do all I can in connection with you, and let us go
          at this business to-day." To-morrow there may be something else,
          and the next day something else, perhaps, according to the
          judgment of the Bishop and those who are appointed with him. In
          this way we could, perhaps, more effectually carry out the mind
          and will of God here in this desert country, than we could if we
          tried to imitate the pattern which was given to us in another
          We can not work here as we could in Jackson County, Mo. In that
          country we did not have to irrigate. We could settle on a piece
          of rising ground there, and the rains of heaven watered it. We
          could settle in any part of the county, or of the counties round
          about, and the rains of heaven would descend and water our land.
          And furthermore, there was timber all around, groves of timber,
          and we could go out before breakfast and get a load of wood, and
          in the course of a few days split rails enough to fence
          considerable of a patch of ground. Here we have to labor under
          other circumstances. Here we have not timber so that every man
          can fence his little farm or stewardship; we have not strength
          enough. If we happen to farm on some of these high grounds, it is
          very difficult to dig canals and water-ditches to water our
          little stewardships. What shall we do, then? Join in together, be
          of one heart and one mind, and let there be a common stock fund,
          so far as property is concerned, and so far as our own individual
          labor is concerned. Consequently, we need not think, because we
          may not be organized precisely according to the law that was
          adapted to Jackson County, that this counseling is void of the
          Spirit of God. Do not let any person begin to think this. You
          need to co-operate together in your labors. This is necessary in
          fencing a great many of our farms. You need to co-operate in
          getting out your water from you water-ditches to water your land,
          and you need to do it in a great many other respects.
          For instance, these mountains, which rise so majestically on the
          west, are full of rich minerals, this is one of the richest
          countries in the world. Will not some of the Latter-day Saints
          eventually be required to act in the department of mining as well
          as in the department of agriculture? Yes. Can one individual do
          as well as half a dozen, or as well as a hundred, at mining? It
          may require the experience of a vast amount of labor in order to
          develop the resources of these mountains, and in that case
          co-operation will be absolutely necessary.
          "But," says one, "the Gentiles have already done that." But very
          little, I will assure you. Here and there they have opened a
          mine, but not one thousandth nor one ten-thousandth of that which
          exists and which will be developed hereafter. Now, in all these
          departments the Latter-day Saints must learn to be united, and I
          am glad to see, I rejoice exceedingly to hear, that the President
          has been moved upon, not only before he left Salt Lake City to go
          down South, but while he has been there, to alter the order of
          things that has existed for many years here in these mountains,
          among the Latter-day Saints. In what respect? To bring about a
          united order of things in regard to their property and labor, and
          the development of the resources of our farming land; in regard
          to raising flocks and herds, building, and developing the mineral
          resources of our mountains. In all these respects the President
          has seen the necessity of beginning to bring about, gradually, as
          the way may open, a different order of things that will strike
          the axe at the root of this pride and distinction of classes. I
          am glad; I rejoice in it. Several of the Branches of the Church
          south have already entered into this order.
          Inquires one, "What is it, what kind of an order is it? Tell us
          all about it." I would tell you as much as I thought was wisdom,
          if I understood it myself; but I do not; I have had but very
          little information about it. Suffice to say that I know that the
          order of things that could have been carried out successfully in
          Jackson County cannot be carried out here, on the same principle,
          without a little variation. It cannot be done--circumstances
          require different laws, different counsel, an order of things
          suited to the condition of this desert country.
          "Are all the people going directly into this thing at once."
          "Yes, if they choose; but you may depend upon it that in all
          cases whenever God has moved upon his servants to introduce
          anything for the good of the people, it takes time for the people
          to receive it--they do not receive it all in a moment. The Lord
          is long-suffering--he bears with the weaknesses and traditions of
          the people for a long time. When, by the mouths of his servants,
          he counsels the people to do this, that, or the other, and they
          are a little backward about it, he does not come out in judgment
          as he did to ancient Israel, and cut them off by thousands and
          tens of thousands. He does not do that, but he bears with them,
          waits year after year. How long he has borne with all of us!
          Forty-three years ago we were commanded to become one in regard
          to our property. Forty-three years we have been in disobedience.
          Forty-three years have rolled over our heads, and we are far from
          oneness still. God has not cut us off, as he did ancient Israel,
          but he has borne with us. Oh, how patient and long-suffering he
          has been with us, perhaps thinking, "Peradventure they will, by
          and by, return, reform, repent, and obey my commandments that I
          gave them in the first rise of the Church. I will wait upon them,
          I will extend forth my hand to them all the day long, and see
          whether they will be obedient." That is the way the Lord feels
          towards us. Should we not pattern after him? If this order of
          things should reach Salt Lake City, if these different wards
          should begin to be organized in some measure, and the people
          begin to be divided, some entering into the order and others
          refusing, should we not bear with those who do not? Yes, bear
          with them, just as the Lord has borne with us, and not begin to
          think that we are better than our neighbors who have not entered
          into the order, and flatter ourselves that we are above them, and
          revile and persecute them, and exercise our influence against
          them, saying, "Oh, they do not belong to the united order of God,
          they are outside of it, and consequently we have not much respect
          for them." We must not do this, for perhaps, though we may think
          we are on a firm foundation, it may slip from under us, and we
          also may be brought into straightened circumstances. If we
          exercise patience, long-suffering, and forbearance with the
          people until they learn by experience what God is doing in our
          midst, many of these rich people may come into the order, who now
          say in their hearts, "We will wait and see whether this thing
          will prosper." If they are honest in heart, they will finally
          come to the conclusion that the people in the united order are a
          happy people; they are not lifted up in pride one above another,
          and they will say, "I think I will go there, with all I have; I
          will become one of them;" and in a little while others, perhaps,
          will apostatize entirely. However, if they want to go, let them
          go, they are of no particular benefit if they feel to apostatize
          from anything which God has established for the benefit of the
          people. May God bless you. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 /
          Brigham Young, April 18, 1874
                            Brigham Young, April 18, 1874
             Delivered in the Meeting-house in Nephi City, Juab County,
                          Saturday Morning, April 18, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          I am thankful that I enjoy the privilege of meeting with the
          Saints here this morning. While I attempt to speak, I pray that I
          may have the spirit of the holy Gospel, and have strength to
          proclaim its teachings to my own and to your satisfaction. I also
          pray that you may give strict attention. This prayer is offered
          to you, my brethren and sisters. Pray for the Spirit to open your
          minds, enlighten your understanding, strengthen me, and so help
          me, that I may speak the words of truth to you, and that your
          hearts may be prepared to receive them.
          My remarks this morning I design as a text for my brethren and
          sisters to speak and act upon. We have not come to you with any
          new doctrine, nor with a new Bible, not by any means. Yet the
          doctrine we are now preaching, in order to bring about a union
          among the Saints, seems to be about as new to them as the
          preaching by the elders when they first came to their several
          neighborhoods and called upon them to hear and obey the first
          principles of the Gospel of Christ. I can say, with all
          thankfulness and gratitude, that we have never seen the day, from
          the time we first became acquainted with Joseph and the Church
          and kingdom of God upon the earth, when the hearts of the people
          were so well prepared to receive the greater blessings of the
          kingdom as they are now. We are happy in saying this, for it is
          true; this is encouraging, and fills me with hope and
          consolation, that, after laboring and toiling with Joseph, and
          since his death, to unite the Latter-day Saints, this is the
          first time that we have seen that we can bring their hearts into
          a union. This should be encouraging to each and every Latter-day
          Saint, and should teach us that the Lord is merciful to us, that
          he still remembers us, that he is sending forth his voice--the
          voice of his Spirit, into the hearts of his people, crying unto
          them--"Stop! Stop your course! Cease to bring in and build up
          Babylon in your midst." It is the duty of each and every one of
          us to reflect upon the office and calling we possess, and see
          whether we are doing the will of the Lord, and if we are not, we
          should stop and begin anew to establish the kingdom of God upon
          the earth.
          I will now read a portion of Scripture from the 14th chapter of
          the Revelations of John, beginning at the 6th verse: "And I saw
          another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting
          Gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every
          nations, and kindred, and tongue, and people, saying with a loud
          voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his
          judgment is come; and worship him that made heaven, and earth,
          and the sea, and the fountains of waters." I will also read from
          the 18th chapter of Revelation, commencing at the 4th verse: "And
          I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my
          people, that ye receive not of her plagues. For her sins have
          reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities."
          I will ask the Latter-day Saints, Do we, as a people, believe
          that the angel referred to in the 6th verse of the 14th chapter
          of John's revelation, has flown through the midst of heaven, that
          he has been to earth, called upon Joseph, delivered the
          revelation of the Lord, restored the Priesthood, &c.? Do we, as
          Latter-day Saints, believe that this angel has been to earth, and
          that he has committed the Gospel unto the children of men? We
          certainly should not be here to-day, if we did not believe this,
          and that, too, with all our hearts. This is the answer given, for
          himself and herself, by every Latter-day Saint, "We believe, most
          firmly, that the Gospel has been revealed in these last days unto
          and through Joseph Smith the Prophet; that the Priesthood and its
          keys were bestowed upon him, and through him upon others; and
          that the proclamation has gone forth to the nations of the
          earth--"Come out of her, my people," &c., as mentioned in that
          portion of Scripture contained in Revelations, 18th chap, and 4th
          Has this proclamation been heard by any of the inhabitants of the
          earth? Yes, the Latter-day Saints most assuredly believe that
          this Scripture was fulfilled in the rise of the Church of Jesus
          Christ of Latter-day Saints. By and by the cry will be, as
          prophesied by John the Revelator, "Babylon is fallen." This is in
          the future; but this people believe that the voice of the angel
          has been heard, calling upon the honest in heart in every nation,
          to come out from confusion and discord, and from the
          transgressions of the children of men. The cry has come to
          them--"Separate yourselves from sinners and from sin." If we, as
          a people, had not believed this, we should not have been here
          this day. "Be not partakers of her sins, lest ye receive of her
          plagues, for her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath
          remembered her iniquities." This we believe, consequently I have
          to say to the people, we have not come with any new doctrine; we
          have believed this ever since we were baptized for the remission
          of sins. Have the people come out from the nations? Yes. Have we
          separated ourselves from the nations? Yes. And what else have we
          done? Ask ourselves the question. Have we not brought Babylon
          with us? Are we not promoting Babylon here in our midst? Are we
          not fostering the spirit of Babylon that is now abroad on the
          face of the whole earth? I ask myself this question, and I
          answer, Yes, yes, to some extent, and there is not a Latter-day
          Saint but what feels that we have too much of Babylon in our
          midst. The spirit of Babylon is too prevalent here. What is it?
          Confusion, discord, strife, animosity, vexation, pride,
          arrogance, selfwill and the spirit of the world. Are these things
          in the midst of those called Latter-day Saints? Yes, and we feel
          I now ask my brethren and sisters who enjoy the Spirit of the
          Lord, if we have not traveled as far as we should travel on this
          road--the high road to destruction, the great highway, the broad
          gate through which so many pass? The gate is wide, the way is
          broad, and many there be that go in thereat; and many calling
          themselves Latter-day Saints are scrambling to see how quick they
          can get in. The spirit of confusion is in the midst of this
          people, and we have traveled this road just as far as we can
          travel it and be Saints. Is this the experience of the Latter-day
          Saints? I can answer that it is; and now, that the Lord is moving
          upon his servants to bring the Saints to a oneness, there is a
          spirit resting upon them, and if you talk with them, they will
          say, at once, "Yes, this is right, we must be one. This is the
          doctrine that Joseph taught and the revelations that were first
          given through Joseph were for the Church to gather together. We
          were then commanded to come out from the wicked and to consecrate
          what we had, lay it at the feet of the Bishops, receive our
          inheritance, improve thereupon, and be one--be as the family of
          heaven upon earth." This is the spirit of the people, and they
          say: "Thank the Lord, I have prayed for this for years and years.
          I have looked for and expected it, and I am exceedingly thankful
          it has come."
          I will now quote another portion of Scripture, which I think you
          are pretty well acquainted with, if you read the Bible. It is one
          of the last petitions that the Savior presented to his Father in
          heaven, while he was upon the earth--a short prayer which he made
          on behalf of his disciples. He had but very few, for,
          notwithstanding his many miracles and wonderful works, very few
          seemed to cling to and have confidence in him at all times and
          under all circumstances; but there were a few who wished to and
          who did remain with him until his death, that is they stood a
          little way off; they said--"We are going to see what they are
          going to do with him." But before Peter denied him, and before he
          was taken by the soldiers, he offered a brief, simple prayer to
          his Father. He has been talking with and exhorting his brethren,
          and showing them the necessity of living according to the faith
          that he had taught them, and he offered up this
          petition--"Father, make these my disciples one, as we are one, I
          in thou, thou in me, and I in them, that we may all be one; and I
          pray not for these only, but for all who believe on me through
          their testimony." This is a simple prayer. Did he who offered it
          mean anything, or did he not? If he meant anything, what did he
          mean? How much did he mean, and how did he calculate his
          disciples to construe this short prayer in their lives, in their
          walk, faith and practice after he was taken from them? How far,
          how much and wherein did he want them to be one? Can any of you
          show to us exactly what he meant? If you say he meant that every
          one who believed on him should be one in their belief, that is
          sectarianism. Take the mother Church--the "Holy Catholic
          Church"--and the prayer of its members is that all may be
          Catholics: "Father, I pray thee to make the people all holy
          Catholics." This is the faith and prayer of the Catholics, and
          the meaning they give to the petition of Jesus. The same with the
          Calvinists; and when the present themselves before the throne of
          grace, the burden of their petition is--"I pray thee, Father,
          make these people one as we are one; influence them to leave the
          Catholic Church, to revolt and come out from that wicked mother,
          that wicked harlot, that wicked Church, and declare themselves
          believers in that pure and holy doctrine that God has decreed all
          things that take place." Go to those who believe in the doctrine
          of freewill, which, you know, comprehends many of the so-called
          Christian societies of the world, and they come up with a double
          and twisted storm--"God Almighty, make them all Methodists! Yes,
          Lets all be Methodists." I pray thee, Father, to take away the
          vail from the minds of this people, that they may see it is free
          grace and free will! God be praised, lets all be Methodists."
          This is how the sectarians explain and define the meaning of that
          memorable prayer of the Savior that his followers might be one;
          and you will excuse me for my manner of illustrating it--I did
          this to illustrate facts just as they are.
          Did Jesus mean this, or did he not? Had he any allusion whatever
          to one hero on the right, and to another on the left, each
          crying--"Lo! here is Christ, and lo! there is Christ, He is not
          yonder? And another one point this way, and another that way, and
          so on to every point of the compass? What does all this portray
          before the mind of the rational being, the philosopher, one who
          has the spirit of revelation, and who understands the words of
          life and has the keys of life to the people; and to all who
          believe in the revelations of the Lord Jesus in the Latter days?
          Confusion upon confusion, discord, strife, animosity, vexation,
          perplexity, warring to the knife and slaying each other. Oh, the
          number of Christian wars there have been upon the face of the
          earth! We can very readily and truthfully say that true
          Christians--the members of the true Church of Christ on the
          earth--never take the sword unless to defend themselves.
          Brethren and sisters, we want to understand what the Savior meant
          when he prayed that his disciples might be one. One in faith?
          Yes. One in doctrine? yes. One in practice? Yes. One in
          interests? Yes. One in hope? Yes, and all concentrated in the
          kingdom of God on the earth and the establishment thereof, the
          fulfillment of the Scriptures, the gathering of the Saints, and
          the salvation of the inhabitants of the earth. This is the
          oneness and the union the Savior meant. Let me here ask the
          question, Did the Savior design that we should be one with regard
          to Faith in him, repentance of sin, baptism for the remission
          thereof, the imposition of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost,
          the gifts and graces of the Spirit of the Lord, that there might
          be in the Church first Apostles, then Prophets, pastors,
          teachers, helps, governments, diversities of tongues, the gift of
          prophecy, the gift of discernment of spirits; also the gift of
          Faith, so that if poison be administered it should not hurt the
          believer; and if there should be a necessity to take up serpents,
          it should be done without danger? Yes, all this is included in
          the oneness prayed for by the Savior; and some of the gifts I
          have enumerated have been witnessed by most of us. I myself have
          seen rattlesnakes handled as you would handle a piece of rope. I
          remember one night, when going to Missouri, in the year 1834, I
          was spreading our blankets on the tall prairie grass, which was
          pretty thick and heavy, that a rattle-snake was under my hands
          and warned me of his presence by his rattles. I called to one of
          the brethren who was helping, and turning back the blanket, said
          to him--"Take this snake and carry it off and tell it not to come
          back again; and to say to its neighbors do not come into our camp
          tonight, lest some one might kill you." He took up the snake and
          carried it off several rods from the camp, and told it to stay
          away, and to tell its neighbors not to come into the camp, for
          they might get killed if they did. Many such circumstances have
          transpired in the experience of the Elders of this Church, but we
          need not stop to relate them, for it is well known that the gifts
          of the Gospel are in this Church, such as healing, faith,
          speaking with tongues, discerning spirits, prophecy, &c., and I
          need not dwell upon them now.
          I will now ask the question, where is the individual who can draw
          the line and show us that, when Jesus prayed that his disciples
          might be one, he meant a oneness only in spiritual things, and
          that it was not to extend to temporal affairs? Will any of you
          draw the line and tell us? For I am certain that I have not
          wisdom enough to define the line between spiritual and temporal
          things. I know nothing about faith in the Lord, without works
          corresponding therewith; they must go together, for without works
          you can not prove that faith exists. We might cry out, until the
          day of our death, that we love the Savior, but if we neglected to
          observe his saying he would not believe us. We have his own words
          to prove this. There were a great many who pretended to think
          considerable of him while he was here in the flesh; but he said
          to his disciples--"If you love me, keep my commandments." This
          was the proof he demanded, then works and faith went together.
          The same principle holds good with parents and children. If any
          of you have a child which says--"I love you, mamma, Oh, I love
          you dearly;" you, to test the sincerity of the child's
          professions, say: "Well, then, my child you will desist from
          doing that which displeases me. Come here, and I will give you a
          little work to do;" or, "I wish you to sit down on that chair,
          and let that crockery alone;" or, "Do not tear up that cloth, my
          daughter; if you love me, come and sit down by my side." "Oh, I
          love you dearly," says the little girl, but she keeps tearing up
          the cloth, or sticking pins and needles into the flesh of other
          children. "Mamma, I love you most dearly." "Well, then," says
          mamma, "you must not afflict or give pain to your sister, or your
          brother; you are naughty to do so, and you must stop this
          mischief." But the child continues her naughtiness, still
          declaring that she loves her mother, though she will not do one
          thing her mother wishes her to do. Such a child needs
          chastisement; if soft words will not answer, severity must. Is
          not this a fact? You have older children who profess to be very
          fond of you; they will say: "Father, I think everything of you,"
          and yet they will take a course that is grievous, annoying and
          disagreeable, and quite contrary to your feelings and wishes.
          Will a father believe the professions of such children? Not much,
          I think. To use another comparison: Suppose a young lady dearly
          loves a young gentleman, who states to others that he is equally
          fond of her, and would be very glad to express to her his
          feelings, but he never calls to see her; not though he may
          declare to others how much he loves her, the young lady will
          say--"I do not believe a word of it, for I know that he would
          make it known to me, if he did." He might declare until doomsday,
          that he loved her, but, unless he told her so and proved it by
          his works, she would say--"That is all folly, he does not mean
          what he says." Neither will you or I believe that anybody loves
          us and wishes to promote our joy and comfort, so long as that
          person acts contrary thereto; neither will Jesus. And unless
          these Latter-day Saints stop now, and go to work and prove by
          their acts that they are the disciples of the Lord Jesus, He will
          spew them out.
          We have gone just as far as we can be permitted to go in the road
          on which we are now traveling. One man has his eye on a gold
          mine, another is for a silver mine, another is for marketing his
          flour or his wheat, another for selling his cattle, another to
          raise cattle, another to get a farm, or building here and there
          and trading and trafficking with each other, just like Babylon,
          taking advantage wherever we can, and all going just as the rest
          of the world. Babylon is here, and we are following in the
          footsteps of the inhabitants of the earth, who are in a perfect
          sea of confusion. Do you know this? You ought to, for there are
          none of you but what see it daily; it is a daily spectacle for
          your eyes and mine, to see the Latter-day Saints trying to take
          advantage of their brethren. There are Elders in this Church who
          would take the widow's last cow, for five dollars, and then kneel
          down and thank God for the fine bargain they had made.
          I have come to this conclusion, which I have preached for years
          and years and years, and Joseph preached it up to the time of his
          death, that the people must leave Babylon and confusion behind
          them, and be the servants and handmaidens of the Lord; they must
          be His family. They have gathered out from Babylon, and they must
          prepare themselves to stand in holy places, preparatory to the
          coming of the Son of Man. I have been watching and waiting, just
          as steadily, and as earnestly and faithfully as ever a mother
          watched over an infant child, to see when this people would be
          ready to receive the doctrine, or the first lessons or
          revelations given when the center stake of Zion was first located
          to consecrate their property, and be indeed the servants and
          handmaidens of the Lord, and labor with all their hearts to do
          His will and build up His kingdom on the earth; and I have never
          seen the time when we could organize one little society, or one
          little ward; but, thank God, the time has come, the Spirit of the
          Lord is upon the people.
          Is it a new doctrine to us that God's people should and must be
          one in everything? It is an old doctrine; shall I say it is as
          old as the hills, as old as the mountains, as old as this world?
          Yes, I can say it is as old as my Father is heaven; it is an
          eternal doctrine; it is from eternity to eternity. Ask yourselves
          the question, Do you expect to go the heaven when you depart this
          life? "Yes, yes, I am going to the Paradise of God;" I am going
          to dwell with the Saints of the Most High in the presence of the
          Father and the Son." How many interests will there be there? How
          many locations, or central places of deposit for the affections,
          labors and wealth of all who dwell there? All in one, all for
          God, all for his glory and his kingdom, and the extension of his
          dominions through the immensity of space, kingdoms on kingdoms,
          every heart and every breath, every voice and every eye, and
          every feeling for the glory of God. Then ask ourselves,--Is the
          Lord going to have a Church upon the earth? Is the Lord going to
          have a kingdom on the earth? Certainly, Daniel saw this in the
          days of Nebuchadnezzar, and gave a description, or rather a hint,
          in regard to the establishment of that kingdom, when the kingdoms
          of this world would be handed over to the Saints of the Most
          High, and they would possess the kingdom and the greatness of the
          kingdom for ever and ever.
          Are we going to enter into the kingdom? Are we going to be
          prepared for the coming of the Son of Man? Are we gong to be
          prepared to enter into the fullness of the glory of the Father
          and the Son? Not so long as we live according to the principles
          of Babylon. Now we are, every man for himself. One says: "This is
          my property, and I am for increasing it." Another says: "This is
          mine." Another: "I will do as I please; I will go where I please
          and when I please; I will do this, that, or the other; and if I
          have a mind to raise grain here and take it to market and give it
          away, it is none of your business." It will be said to all such
          persons, who profess to be Latter-day Saints:--"I never knew you;
          you never were Saints."
          Now I wish to give you a little of our late experience with
          regard to the Savior and his doctrines. We have organized in this
          United Order, commencing at St. George. A thousand thoughts rise
          in my mind, looking at the subject generally. "St. George! Are
          you going to sent me down to St. George? Why, it is like sending
          me out of the world!" But I must not talk about this: suffice it
          to say that St. George is one of the most beautiful places on
          this little farm--this world that we occupy--this little farm of
          the Lord's, one of the choicest places on the face of the earth.
          I see more wealth in that small place than in any other location,
          of its size, in this Territory, or in these mountains; and I
          always have.
          We have organized a small Branch there, or, rather, I may say a
          tolerably large one. I preached a good deal in St. George. It
          seemed to be the only place we could begin our work; they were
          the only people we could organize; but we did organize there. God
          designs to make the people of one heart and one mind from Monday
          morning to Monday morning again, and that everything the do on
          the earth shall promote His cause and kingdom, and the happiness
          and salvation of the human family. "Well," said they, "we do not
          understand; we believe we ought to be one, and that we ought to
          go into the order of Enoch. We understand very well that Enoch
          was so pure and holy that his city was taken, and the saying went
          abroad that Zion is fled. This we believe as firmly as you can."
          Then some others would say, "There will not be one ward organized
          after the brethren go over the rim of the basin." We organized
          every ward or town south of the rim of the basin, and left them
          in tolerably good working order, so far as they had advanced. The
          only trouble with them was, "they did not understand." They would
          say, "It is right, and the Scriptures tell us about it; but we do
          not understand the mode of its operation." One man came to me,
          and old "Mormon," whom I have known over forty-two years, just as
          we were organizing and said--"Brother Brigham, I have preached
          for you all the time. I did the same for brother Joseph. Brother
          Joseph preached this doctrine; is it not strange that the people
          do not see it?" "Then," said I, "you are ready to put down your
          name?" His answer was--"I will think about it." You do not fully
          understand your own faith, nor the doctrines you preach to the
          people, if you do not understand this doctrine; and are not as
          ready to enter it as you would be to lay down this mortal body
          and enter heaven if God should call you, or to do any other duty.
          Suffice it to say, God will establish this order on the face of
          the earth, and if we do not help Him, others will, and they will
          enjoy the benefits of it.
          When we came this side the rim of the basin, we found the people
          more willing than south of the rim of the basin to come forward
          and organize, for they felt that we have traveled as far as we
          can on our present road, without going to destruction. One Bishop
          wrote to me--"Please come and organize us. I am glad you are
          coming this way, we want to be organized. I know that we have to
          consecrate to somebody, and I would rather consecrate to the Lord
          than to the devil. We have to consecrate to one or the other, and
          very soon too." He is a very good Bishop; he is full of the
          spirit of this work, and can not keep from talking about it.
          We now want to organize the Latter-day Saints, every man, woman
          and child among them, who has a desire to be organized, into this
          holy order. You may call it the Order of Enoch, you may call it
          co-partnership, or just what you please. It is the United Order
          of the Kingdom of God on the earth; but we say the Order of Enoch
          on the same principle you find in the revelation concerning the
          Priesthood, which, to avoid the too frequent repetition of the
          name of the Deity, is called the Priesthood after the order of
          Melchizedek. This order is the order of heaven, the family of
          heaven on the earth; it is the children of our Father here upon
          the earth organized into one body or one family, to operate
          As individuals we do not want your farms, we do not want your
          houses and city lots, we do not want your horses and your cattle,
          we do not want your gold and your silver, nor anything of the
          kind. "Well, then, what do your want?" We want the time of this
          people called Latter-day Saints, that we can organize this time
          systematically, and make this people the riches people on the
          face of the earth. If we are the people of God, we are to be the
          richest people on the earth, and these riches are to be held in
          God, not in the devil. God tells us how we may accomplish this,
          as plainly and as surely as he told Joshua and the people of
          Israel how to cause the downfall of the walls of Jericho. They
          were to march around the walls once a day for seven days, then
          seven times in one day, and the last time they went round the
          walls they blew their horns with all their might, and down fell
          the walls of Jericho. We do not understand all about this, if we
          did, we should understand that it was as simple as any of the
          acts of the Lord: as simple as being baptized for the remission
          of sins. We want now to organize the people. Says one--"Don't you
          want my money and my goods?" We want you to put them into the
          kingdom of God, into the vaults that are prepared, into the
          archives, the safe, the institution to help to increase means for
          the kingdom of God on the earth. And what are we to have when we
          enter this order? What we need to eat, drink and wear, and strict
          obedience to the requirements of those whom the Lord sets to
          guide and direct; that our sisters, instead of teasing their
          husbands for a dollar, five dollars, twenty-five dollars, for a
          fine dress, bonnet, or artificials for themselves or their
          daughters, may go to work and learn how to make all these things
          for themselves, being organized into societies or classes for
          that purpose. And the brethren will be organized to do their
          farming, herding and raising cattle, sheep, fruit, grain and
          vegetables; and when they have raised these products, every
          particle be gathered into a storehouse or storehouses, and every
          one have what is needed to sustain him. But the people will stop
          going here, there, and yonder, and saying--"I am after the gold,"
          "I am after the silver," or this, that and the other. They will
          stop this folly and nonsense, for they have already impoverished
          themselves too much by taking so unwise a course. Looking at
          matters in a temporal point of view, and in the light of strict
          economy, I am ashamed to see the poverty that exists among the
          Latter-day Saints. They ought to be worth millions and millions,
          and millions on millions, where they are not worth a dollar.
          Should they spend their means in folly and nonsense? No, not a
          dollar of it, but put all into the general fund for the benefit
          of the kingdom. Organize the brethren and sisters, and let each
          and every one have their duties to perform. Where they are
          destitute of houses, and it is convenient, the most economical
          plan that can be adopted is to have buildings erected large
          enough to accommodate a number of families. For instance, we will
          say there are a hundred families in this place who have not
          houses fit to live in. We will erect a building large enough to
          accommodate them all comfortably, with every convenience for
          cooking, washing, ironing, &c.; and then, instead of each one of
          a hundred women getting up in the morning to cook breakfast for
          father and the large boys, that they may go to their labor, while
          the little children are crying and needing attention, breakfast
          for the whole can be prepared by five or ten women, with a man or
          two to help. Some may say--"This would be confusion." Not at all,
          it would do away with it. Another one says--"It will be a great
          trial to my feelings, if I am obliged to go and breakfast with
          all these men an women. I am faint and sick, and do not eat much,
          and I want my breakfast prepared in peace." Then build side rooms
          by the dozen or score, where you can eat by yourselves; and if
          you wish to invite three or four to eat with you, have your table
          and everything you call for is sent to you. "Well, but I do not
          like this confusion of children." Let the children have their
          dining room to themselves, and let a certain number of the
          sisters be appointed to take charge of the nursery and see that
          they have proper food, in proper quantities and at proper times,
          so as to preserve system and good order as far as possible, that
          a love of order may be established in their youthful minds, and
          they learn how to conduct themselves. Then let there be good
          teachers in the school rooms; and have beautiful gardens, and
          take the little folks out and show them the beautiful flowers,
          and teach them in their childhood the names and properties of
          every flower and plant, teaching them to understand which are
          astringent, which cathartic; this is useful for coloring, that is
          celebrated for its combination of beautiful colors, &c. Teach
          them lessons of beauty and usefulness while they are young,
          instead of letting them play in the dirt, making mud balls, and
          drawing the mud in their hats, and soiling their dresses, and
          cultivate their mental powers from childhood up. When they are
          old enough, place within their reach the advantages and benefits
          of a scientific education. Let them study the formations of the
          earth, the organization of the human system, and other sciences;
          such a system of mental culture and discipline in early years is
          of incalculable benefit to it possessor in mature years. Take,
          for instance, the young ladies now before me, as well as the
          young men, and form a class in geology, in chemistry or
          mineralogy; and do not confine their studies to theory only, but
          let them put in practice what they learn from books, by defining
          the nature of the soil, the composition of decomposition of a
          rock, how the earth was formed, its probable age, and so forth.
          All these are problems which science attempts to solve, although
          some of the views of our great scholars are undoubtedly very
          speculative. In the study of the sciences I have named, our young
          folks will learn how it is that, in traveling in our mountains,
          we frequently see sea shells--shells of the oyster, clam, &c. Ask
          our boys and girls now to explain these things, and they are not
          able to do so; but establish classes for the study of the
          sciences, and they will become acquainted with the various facts
          they furnish in regard to the condition of the earth. It is the
          duty of the Latter-day Saints, according to the revelations, to
          give their children the best educations that can be procured,
          both from the books of the world and the revelations of the Lord.
          If our young men will study the sciences, they will stop riding
          fast horses through the streets, and other folly and nonsense
          which they are now guilty of, and they will become useful and
          honorable members of the community.
          I have been very much interested of late with regard to the
          studies and researches of the geologists who have been
          investigating the geological character of the Rocky Mountain
          country. Professor Marsh, of Yale College, with a class of his
          students, has spent, I think, four summers in succession in the
          practical study of geology in these mountain regions. What is the
          result of his researches? There is one result, so far, that
          particularly pleases me. There are some here who know a man by
          the name of John Hyde, from London, formerly a member of this
          Church, who apostatized and went back; and his great argument
          against the Book of Mormon was, that it stated that the old
          Jaredites and, perhaps, the Nephites, who formerly lived on this
          continent, had horses, while it is well knows that horses were
          unknown to the aboriginal inhabitants of America when it was
          discovered by Columbus, and that there were no horses here until
          they were imported for Europe. Now, since Professor Marsh and his
          class began their investigations, they have found among the
          fossil remains of the extinct animals of America no less than
          fourteen different kinds of horses, varying in height from three
          to nine feet. These discoveries made Professor Marsh's students
          feel almost as though they could eat up these mountains, and
          their enthusiasm for studying the geology of the regions around
          Bridger's Fort was raised to the highest pitch. In their
          researches among these mountains they have formed the opinion
          that there was once a large inland sea here, and they think they
          have discovered the outlet where the water broke forth and formed
          Green River. Here in these valleys and in these ranges of
          mountains we can follow the ancient water line. This discovery of
          Professor Marsh is particularly pleasing to us "Mormons," because
          he has so far scientifically demonstrated the Book of Mormon to
          be true.
          Here is the kingdom of God; do you want to enter into it, or not?
          do you want the future blessings of this kingdom, or do you not?
          Have your choice; but whomsoever you list to obey, his servants
          you will be whether it is Jesus or the devil; please yourselves,
          have your choice. But all know we can not serve two masters
          acceptably; if we love one, we shall hate the other, and if we
          hold on to one, we shall despise the other. We must either be for
          the kingdom of God, or not. But we shall organize this holy order
          here before we leave. We give the invitation to all of you to
          come and get organized. Let us be one; let us carry out the order
          that God has established for the family of heaven.
          God bless you.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / John
          Taylor, April, 19, 1874
                            John Taylor, April, 19, 1874
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER JOHN TAYLOR,
               Delivered in the Meeting-house, at Nephi, Juab County,
                          Sunday Morning, April, 19, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          We have heard a good deal since we have assembled, in relation to
          what is called the Order of Enoch, the New Order, the United
          Order, or whatever name we may give to it. It is new and then it
          is old, for it is everlasting as I understand it. I am asked
          sometimes--"Do you understand it?" Yes, I do, no, I do not, yes I
          do, no, I don't, and both are true; we know that such an order
          must be introduced, but are not informed in relation to the
          details, and I guess it is about the same with most of you. We
          have been talking about an order that is to be introduced and
          established among the Saints of God for the last forty-two years,
          but we have very little information given us concerning it,
          either in the Scriptures or in the Book of Mormon. The fullest
          detail that we have of it is in the Book of Doctrine and
          Covenants, and that is the case with almost everything pertaining
          to the kingdom of God on the earth; and hence I have said, and
          say now, that I believe that Joseph Smith revealed more in
          relation to the kingdom of God, and was a greater Prophet than
          perhaps any other man who ever lived except Jesus. I do not know
          how far Enoch and perhaps some others on this continent went; if
          we had further records from the Book of Mormon they might throw
          more light on subjects with which we are not at present very well
          We occupy a very remarkable position; we are living in a peculiar
          day and age of the world, in the dispensation of the fullness of
          times. When the President communicated with us a little before
          starting from the south, about this new order, I really did not
          know what shape it would assume or how it would be introduced,
          but it had got to come; and then, on the other hand, I do not now
          that we need to have very much anxiety in relation to the matter,
          for if it be of God, it must be right, and its introduction is
          only a question of time. As to the modus operandi, that is
          another question. I have sometimes thought, to tell the truth,
          that we might have different orders, perhaps the patriarchal
          order, perhaps the order of Enoch, and perhaps an
          all-things-in-common order, all operating under one head; but I
          do not know anything definitely about it, and it is not my
          business. I have had reflections of that kind running through my
          mind, inasmuch as it is "the dispensation of the fullness of
          times when God will gather together all things in one." The
          greatest embarrassment that we have to contend with at the
          present time is not in knowing what to do, but knowing how to do
          it, and the circumstances with which we are surrounded, not so
          much among our own people as outsiders, and then again among our
          own people, for we find all kinds of persons amongst us now, as
          we always have done. Some will start right into anything of this
          kind, perhaps with a determination to do right, or at least half
          right; but when they get started in the operation, something or
          other comes up and they back up, break the traces and play the
          devil generally. I expect there will be a good deal of the same
          kind of thing associated with this, as there has been with other
          things that have been started. I do not expect that every one
          that is loud-mouthed and seemingly very anxious that this thing
          should be introduced is going to stick by it for ever and ever,
          any more than many others have done in other things. At the same
          time I think it is very proper that the servants of God should be
          brought under an influence which emanates from him, and that that
          influence should govern them in all things, temporal as well as
          spiritual. For my part, I can not see why it is that men should
          be so much attached to the things of this world, and why they are
          so extremely desirous to have their own way in relation to them;
          that is a thing I never could understand. We like freedom, God
          has put it in out bosoms; and as I said to President George A.,
          the other day, in talking about this matter, in organizing the
          Order of Enoch, as it may be called, we want on the one hand the
          most perfect union; and on the other hand the most extended
          personal liberty that it is possible for men to enjoy consonant
          with carrying out the principles of unity. Not the liberty to
          trample on other people's rights; not the liberty to take from
          people that which belongs to them; not the liberty to infringe
          upon public interests or the public benefit, but personal liberty
          so far as we can enjoy it. These are my ideas and feelings in
          relation to these matters, based upon the principles of truth
          and, as it is said,--"If the truth shall make you free, than
          shall you be free indeed, sons of God without rebuke in the midst
          of a crooked and perverse generation."
          In relation to religious matters I would not have a religion that
          I could not sustain, and that God would not sustain me in; I do
          not want it, nor to have anything to do with it. One thing I have
          always felt proud of, and that is, that the principles of the
          Gospel of Jesus Christ were so plain, clear, pointed, definite
          and incontrovertible that they defied the whole world, and so far
          as I have gone, and the servants of God around me, no man has
          ever been able to successfully gainsay one solitary principle
          connected with the Church and kingdom of God upon the earth, that
          is, in regard to what we term sometimes spiritual things. I want
          to see the principle established in relation to our temporal
          matters, and I believe, from what little conversation I have had
          with the brethren, that that is their feeling. In relation to
          these matters I do not want to see one solitary principle that an
          honest, honorable man cannot sustain; but let everything be so
          that it can be dragged right forth to the daylight, and turned
          over and over and over and examined all sides up, and inside out,
          and see that it is true, good, honorable, upright and honest in
          every particular. That is the kind of thing we want, as honest
          men, and we want to get at things in that kind of way; and if
          they will not bear investigation of that kind, I should have just
          the same opinion of them as I have about unsound religious
          matters, and I should not want anything to do with them. I do not
          want anything that cannot be sustained in the face of open day,
          and in the face of God, angels, men and devils.
          It is asked--"Well, what is the Order?" We do not know exactly,
          we know it in part; it is just as Paul said in his day--"We see
          in part and we prophecy in part" &c. But to begin with, unless
          some change does take place in relation to our temporal matters,
          our situation is anything but pleasant. The fact of the matter
          is, we are all of us on the highway to financial or temporal
          ruin. The world is going to the devil just as fast as it can go.
          Corruption, fraud, chicanery, deception, evil and iniquity of
          every kind prevail, so that you cannot trust a man in any place,
          you can not rely upon his word, you can not rely upon any
          instrument of writing that he gets up, and there is nothing you
          can rely upon. Every day's news brings accounts of defalcations,
          frauds, infamies, rottenness and corruptions of every kind,
          enough to sink a nation from the presence of God and all
          honorable beings. And this is not only so in the United States,
          but other nations, in ours especially.
          We, as a people, have come out from Babylon, but we have brought
          a great amount of these infernal principles with us, and we have
          been grabbing, grasping, pinching, squeezing, hauling, horning
          and hooking on every side, and it seems as though every man was
          for himself and the devil for us all. That is about the position
          we are in to-day. We want to change in these things. We have come
          to Zion. What to do? Why to do the will of God, to accomplish his
          purposes, to save ourselves, our progenitors and our posterity,
          and we have come because the Spirit of God led us here through
          the instrumentality of the holy Priesthood of God. Jesus
          says--"My sheep hear my voice, and they know me and they will
          follow me, and a stranger they will not follow, because they know
          not the voice of a stranger." We who have gathered here have been
          going in a curious, crooked kind of a way, but we have
          nevertheless started to build up the kingdom of God and to
          establish correct principles upon the earth and to help to redeem
          it. Can we accomplish this by continuing in the course we have
          hitherto pursued? No, verily, no. But I will tell you how I have
          always felt, both in Joseph's day and since then, whenever the
          Lord has wrought upon the man who stands at the head of his
          people to introduce anything for the welfare of his kingdom, it
          is time to look out, and to carry out the counsels that are
          given; and yesterday, after I arrived here, and had seen
          President Young, and conversed with him, and then heard him and
          others speak on these principles, I said to him, "The old fiddle
          is in tune, the sacred fire is glowing and burning;" and I thing
          so still. The old fiddle is in tune, the right feeling, spirit
          and influence are operating, and we all feel them.
          A great deal has been said about the evils that exist, and we
          might talk for days about the necessity of something being
          introduced for the welfare and happiness of the Saints of God
          here in Zion. I suppose, on a reasonable calculation, that there
          are ten thousand men out of employment in this Territory, perhaps
          for five months in a year. Now, if they were at work, and only
          got one dollar a day, there would be ten thousand dollars a day
          earned, which in five months would make a very large sum, one
          million three hundred thousand dollars I think. We are bringing
          in here all kinds of things that we ought to make ourselves. What
          are our broom makers and coopers doing? What are you doing with
          your molasses mills, and where do you get your cloth, shoes,
          hats, shirts and things of this kind from? It takes quite an
          amount to supply them, they must come from somewhere, and the
          question is, where do they all come from? At a Bishops' meeting
          in Salt lake City I said I wanted to get a well bucket, but I
          could not tell where to get it, and I wished some of them would
          tell me where; but they could not tell me, although here were a
          good many Bishops present. This is a pretty state of things. It
          is true that we have made some advances in some branches of
          manufacture. There is a big factory in Provo, some near Salt Lake
          City, one at Ogden, one at Box-Elder and one in the South. It has
          required great efforts on the part of President Young and others
          to establish these institutions, and when we get them we do not
          want the cloth. We do not want our shoes made here--we would
          rather send off our hides, and get somebody east to make them,
          they can make shoes so much better there than here. Then we do
          not want leather shoes here, we must send off and get a lot of
          paper thing, with heels high enough to put anybody's ankles out
          of joint.
          Well, my opinion is, that with home labor properly directed and
          applied, we shall have all the bread, butter, cheese, shoes,
          clothes, hats, bonnets, shawls and everything that we need, and I
          think, as the President has said, if we behave ourselves, we
          shall get pretty rich. That is all right enough, though riches
          are only a little thing, in comparison to the great principles of
          eternal lives and exaltation in the kingdom of God, the riches of
          eternity. But my time has expired and I must close. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 /
          Brigham Young, May 3, 1874
                             Brigham Young, May 3, 1874
                  Delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                           Sunday Afternoon, May 3, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          It is nearly time to close this meeting, but I desire to speak a
          few words. I have very much that I wish to convey to the
          Latter-day Saints, but I can only say, in as few words as
          possible, a little at a time, upon a few subjects which I wish to
          lay before the Saints. First looking upon the Latter-day Saints,
          the inquiry within myself is--Do you know whether I am leading
          you right or not? Do you know whether I dictate you right or not?
          Do you know whether the wisdom and the mind of the Lord are
          dispensed to you correctly or not? These are questions which I
          will answer by quoting a little Scripture, and saying to the
          Latter-day Saints what was said to the Saints in former times,
          "No man knoweth the things of God, but by the Spirit of God."
          That was said in the days of the Savior and the Apostles, and it
          was no more true then than it is now, or than it was in the days
          of the Prophets, Moses, Abraham, Noah, Enoch, Adam, or in any and
          every age of the world. It requires the same manifestations in
          one age as in another, to enable me to understand the things of
          God. I have a request to make of each and every Latter-day Saint,
          or those who profess to be, to so live that the Spirit of the
          Lord will whisper to them and teach them the truth, and define to
          their understanding the difference between truth and error, light
          and darkness, the things of God and the things that are not of
          God. In this there is safety; without this there is danger,
          imminent danger; and my exhortation to the Latter-day Saints
          is--Live your religion.
          Among all intelligent beings upon the earth there is a great
          mistake in regard to dispensing to others the knowledge they
          possess. In the political world, right here, and through our
          government and other governments, there is a great desire in each
          and every one, who is prominent and influential, to manage their
          political affairs by and with their friends, and to keep their
          enemies from knowing anything about them, which creates a party
          feeling, and parties promote distrust and jealousy, which lead to
          discord and strife. Such is also the case in the financial world.
          In our trading and trafficking we wish to confine the knowledge
          of our business in as small a limit as possible, that others may
          not know what we are doing, lest we would lose our good bargains
          and fail in our schemes.
          It is more or less the same in the religious world. We wish to
          know a great deal, and do not want our neighbors to know as much
          as we do, but wish them to believe that we know it all. This
          trait of character is very common, both here and through the
          whole world. We all wish to know something that our neighbors do
          not know. With scientific men you will often find the same trait
          of character: "My studies and my researches are beyond those of
          my neighbors; I know more than they know; I treasure this up to
          myself, and I am looked upon as a superior being, and that
          delights me."
          I say to the Latter-day Saints, and to all the world, this is all
          wrong. We are here upon this earth as the children of our
          heavenly Father, who is filled with light and intelligence, and
          he dispenses that to his children as they can receive and profit
          by it, without money and without price. Is not this a fact? It
          is. Go to every department of life, to the mechanics, to the
          manufacturers, to those learned in all the arts and sciences,
          throughout the world, and not one of them possesses an item of
          knowledge or wisdom but what has come from God, the fountain of
          all wisdom and knowledge. The idea that the religion of Christ is
          one thing, and science is another, is a mistaken idea, for there
          is no true religion without true science, and consequently there
          is no true science without true religion. The fountain of
          knowledge dwells with God, and he dispenses it to his children as
          he pleases, and as they are prepared to receive it, consequently
          it swallows up and circumscribes all. This is the great plan of
          salvation; this is the "bugaboo" that the Christian world hoot at
          so much, and which they call "Mormonism"--it is the Gospel of
          life and salvation.
          Confidence is lost in the hearts of the nations of the earth.
          Confidence is lost one towards another, among the religious sects
          of the day; confidence is lost in the scientific and mechanical
          world; in the financial and in the political world, and it must
          be restored. I make this statement, and there is not a scientist
          or divine on the earth who can truthfully controvert it.
          There is a great deal being said and rumored about what we are
          teaching the people at the present time with regard to being one
          in our temporal affairs as we are one in the doctrine that we
          have embraced for our salvation. I will say to you that erroneous
          traditions at once begin to present themselves. Why we have
          received these traditions, those who reflect, read and understand
          can pass their own decision. You can not find a sect anywhere
          that strictly believes in the New Testament. Read over the
          sayings of the Savior to his disciples, those of the disciples
          one to another, and of the people, with regard to being one; and
          then bring up the fact that they believed in this doctrine, and
          that they taught and practiced it so far that the believers sold
          their possessions and laid the proceeds at the Apostles' feet.
          Now, what is the tradition on this point? To sell your houses,
          your farms, your stores, your cattle, and bring the means and lay
          it down at the feet of the Apostles, and then live, eat, drink
          and wear until it is all gone, and then what? Do without? Yes, or
          be beggars. Our traditions lead us to this point, and that throws
          us into a dilemma, out of which we know not how to extricate
          ourselves, To the Latter-day Saints, I say, all this is a
          mistake; these are false ideas, false conclusions. I am here to
          tell you how things are, and, as far as necessary, to tell you
          how they were, and then to tell you how they will be. To begin
          with, we will unitedly labor to sustain the kingdom of God upon
          the earth. Shall we sell our possessions, have all things in
          common, live upon the means until it is gone, and then beg
          through the country? No, no. Sell nothing of our possessions.
          True, the earth is at present in possession of the great enemy of
          the Savior, but he does not own a foot of it; he never did, but
          he has possession of it, and they say that possession is nine
          points of the law, and it seems to be so. Well, if I have a foot
          of land that I have dedicated and devoted to my heavenly Father
          for his kingdom on the earth, I never dispose of that. I have
          owned a great deal of land, and I now own a great deal of land in
          the United States, and I have never yet sold a foot of it. I say
          to the Latter-day Saints, keep your land, dedicate it to God,
          preserve it in truth, in purity, in holiness; pray that the
          Spirit of the Lord may brood over it, that whoever walks over
          that land, may feel the influence of that Spirit; pray that the
          Spirit of the Lord may cover our possessions, then gather around
          us the necessaries of life. Dispose of nothing that we should
          keep, but continue to labor, praying the Lord to bless the soil,
          the atmosphere and the water. Then we have our crops, our fruit,
          our flocks and herds to live upon, to improve upon, and then go
          on and make our clothing, build houses, improve our streets, our
          cities and all our surroundings and make them beautiful; beautify
          every place with the workmanship of our own hands. Keep what is
          necessary, dispose of what we may have to dispose of. To whom? To
          those who are operating in our mines to develop the resources in
          our mountains, and to all who have need. By such a course the
          wasting of our substance, as has been too much the case, will be
          stopped; and when we labor, let our labor count something for our
          benefit. We ask concerning the rich, Do we want your gold and
          your silver? No, we do not. Do we want your houses and lands? We
          do not. What do we want? We want obedience to the requirements of
          wisdom, to direct the labors of every man and every woman in this
          kingdom to the best possible advantage, that we may feed and
          clothe ourselves, build our hoses and gather around us the
          comforts of life, without wasting so much time, means, and
          energy. And instead of saying that I shall give up my carriage
          for the poor to ride in, we will direct the poor so that every
          man may have his carriage, if he will be obedient to the
          requirements of the Almighty. Ever family will have all that they
          can reasonably desire. When we learn and practice fair dealing in
          all our intercourse and transactions, then confidence now so far
          lost, but so much needed, will be restored; and we will be
          enabled to effectually carry out our operations for the friendly
          and profitable cooperation of money and labor, now so generally
          and so injuriously antagonistic.
               It has been said that, a few evenings ago, in the 20th Ward,
          I made use of the expression that the co-operative stores would
          be used up or spoiled; if I did use such an expression, it must
          have been in connection with others to qualify it. The question
          was asked, "What are you going to do with the co-operative
          stores?" "Why, use them up," and some of the brethren got the
          idea that the destruction of these stores was intended, because,
          to many, the idea of using a thing up, is to destroy it; but this
          was not the meaning I wished to convey. But I say swallow them
          up, or circumscribe them, or incorporate them, from time to time,
          in more extensive co-operative plans. By way of comparison,
          suppose a rope with seven strands, and some one is suspicious of
          its strength and we add a thousand strands to it, who then can
          suspect its strength? Now, comparing our present mercantile and
          stock-raising institutions, our factories and every things else
          we have in co-operation, instead of weakening this cord of seven
          strands, we throw around it a thousand other strands, and weave
          them in to strengthen it, is not the first cord swallowed up?
          Yes, it is, in one sense, used up, we cannot see anything of it;
          and so we shall make our additions of thousands of strands to
          every co-operative institution we have established, and instead
          of having a few of the people sustain this parent co-operative
          store, or the ward store, we will have the support of the whole
          people. That is the difference; can you understand it? How
          careful we should be in the use of language, to prevent, so far
          as possible, the drawing of false conclusions, and the going
          abroad of erroneous impressions.
          This is a comparison with regard to our co-operative stores and
          every co-operative institution we have; we expect that the whole
          people will support them and give them their influence; that the
          whole people will work for the whole, and that all will be for
          the kingdom of God on the earth. All that I have is in that
          kingdom. I have nothing, only what the Lord has put in my
          possession. It is his; I am his, and all I ask is for him to tell
          me what to do with my time, my talents and the means that he puts
          in my possession. It is to be devoted to his kingdom. Let every
          other man and woman do the same, and all the surplus we make is
          in one great amount for accomplishing the purposes of the Lord.
          He says, "I will make you the richest people on the earth." Now,
          go to work, Latter-day Saints, and make yourselves one, and all
          needed blessings will follow.
          I will now briefly notice a trait in the Christian world in
          regard to their continually misrepresenting us, which they most
          emphatically do. Wherever we go they misrepresent us. They do not
          stop to reason, or for the introduction of good sound logic. They
          do not stop to know their own minds, and to ask themselves
          questions with regard to facts as they exist, but are wholly
          uninfluenced by their erroneous traditions. We Christians are
          divided and subdivided, but we all believe that there are good
          people among all the sects of the day. As a "Mormon" or
          Latter-day Saint, I believe this just as much as any sectarian
          believes it, but I do not believe it as the sectarians believe
          it. We all believe that good people do live and have lived among
          the Christian sects. Says one, "My father was a good man; or, My
          mother or my sister was a good woman, my brother was a good man,
          my neighbor was a good person; they lived and died believing in
          their several faiths; some of them holy Catholics, who died
          shouting and rejoicing that the time had come for them to be
          released from this tenement of clay. Others were good
          Protestants, and they rejoiced and were exceeding glad when the
          time came for them to lie down and rest their weary bodies, and
          they were happy." Now, I, speaking as one of the Christian world,
          when a man says to me, "Unless you are born of the water and of
          the spirit you can not enter the kingdom of heaven," reply, "My
          dear friend, my father and my mother were just as good Christians
          as ever lived on the face of the earth, and they died as happy as
          they could be, and their souls were full of glory. Tell me that
          they have not gone to heaven! It is all nonsense, it is folly; I
          do not believe a word of it; you must be one of those deceivers
          that the Savior taught should come in the latter days." This
          erroneous tradition is planted in the bosoms of the Christian
          world, and from this they take the liberty of saying that the
          doctrine preached by the Latter-day Saints can not be true, for
          if it is their fathers and mothers are not saved. Would you like
          to know the truth on this point, O Christian world? Yes, yes, the
          honest ones would; I can not say so much for the bread and butter
          Christians; but when you meet an honest person, he says--"I wish
          I knew the truth about this. Our beloved brother and father in
          the Gospel, the father of the Methodist Episcopal Church, John
          Wesley, was he not a good man? Tell me that he is not saved!" The
          Christian world can not endure such an idea. "John Knox not
          saved! and thousands of others not saved!" They can not endure
          the thought. I can say to them of a truth, but it will need
          explanation, there is not one of these men who lived according to
          the light that he received, and up to ever blessing God bestowed
          upon him, but what is happier to-day than he ever expected that
          he could be. But the Christian world imbibe the idea that, if
          these good men, who have died, have not gone into the presence of
          the Father and the Son and are not in the kingdom of heaven, they
          must be in the depths of hell. This is folly in the extreme; but
          the Christians do not know how to comprehend this, how to
          understand the words of life. I can say this for all good people,
          I do not care where they lived and died, they will be far happier
          hereafter than they ever conceived of while here. Do you think
          that the good Chinaman and Hindo will be saved? Yes, as much as
          the Methodist. But erroneous tradition prevents the Christian
          world from seeing and understanding this. They ought to stop and
          reflect, and ask the question--"Do we understand the Scriptures
          when we read them?" I say that they do not, if they did they
          would see that we have the words of eternal life, and would
          receive our teachings with joy. I have not time to fully explain
          this, but I can say that this erroneous tradition palliates, in a
          measure, the conduct and views of the Christian world when their
          prejudices arise like towering mountains against these poor
          Latter-day Saints.
          We shall labor and go forward, as long as we live, to redeem the
          world of mankind. This is the labor the Savior has undertaken.
          The earth was committed to him by the Father, who said, "My son,
          go and redeem the world and all things upon it; pay this debt,
          and your brethren, who believe on you and who are one, as the
          Father and the Son are one, will be co-workers in the great and
          eternal work, until all the sons and daughters of Adam and Eve,
          that can be saved, will be saved in a kingdom of glory," and all
          will be saved, except the sons of perdition.
          Can the Christian world understand this? No. There is not a
          priest in the pulpit, nor a deacon that sits under the pulpit,
          but what, if he knew the facts as they are, would give glory to
          God in the highest, that he lived in this day and age of the
          world, and thank the Father that he has revealed his will from
          the heavens.
          I thank you for your attention, brethren and sisters. I have
          detained you a little longer than I intended to do. God bless
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 /
          Brigham Young, May 7, 1847
                             Brigham Young, May 7, 1847
                         REMARKS BY PRESIDENT BRIGHAM YOUNG,
                 At the Opening of the Adjourned General conference,
              held in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, May 7, 1847.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                            IN BECOMING SELF-SUSTAINING.
          I do not expect to be able to speak much during this Conference,
          but I make a request of my brethren who may speak, to give us
          their instructions and views for or against this general
          co-operative system, which we, with propriety, may call the
          United Order. If any choose to give it any other name that will
          be applicable to the nature of it, they can do so. A system of
          oneness among any people, whether former-day Saints, middle-day
          Saints, eleventh hour of the day Saints, last hour of the day
          Saints, or not Saints at all, is beneficial; but I wish the
          brethren to give us their views for and against union in a
          family, whether that family consists of the parents and ten
          children, or the parents, ten children, fifty grandchildren, or a
          hundred and fifty great-grandchildren, and so on until you get to
          a nation. I ask of my brethren who may address the congregations,
          to give us their views for and against union, peace, good order;
          laboring for the benefit of ourselves, and in connection with
          each other for the welfare and happiness of all, whether in the
          capacity of a family, neighborhood, city, state, nation, or the
          We see the inhabitants of the earth, as individuals and nations,
          struggling, striving, laboring and toiling every one for himself
          and nobody else; all are anxious to bless their own dear selves.
          If you will permit me I will quote an anecdote in illustration of
          this trait of character among the human family. A man, in asking
          a blessing upon his food, prayed, "O Lord, bless me and my wife,
          my son John and his wife, we four and no more. Amen." If we had
          generosity of feeling sufficient to pray for blessings upon a
          fifth person, or upon a whole family, neighborhood or community,
          all the better.
          We are not entering into any new system, order or doctrine. There
          are numbers of organizations of a similar character, as far as
          they go, in our own country and in other countries. Our object is
          to labor for the benefit of the whole, to retrench in our
          expenditures; to be prudent and economical; to study well the
          necessities of the community, and to pass by its many useless
          wants; to study to secure life, health, wealth, and union, which
          is power and influence to any community; and I ask my brethren,
          while addressing the people during this Conference, to take up
          these items of every-day life. It seems to be objectionable to
          some, for the Latter-day Saints to enter into a self-sustaining
          system, and the probability of our doing so causes a great deal
          of talk. If we were infidels, any other sect of Christians, or
          nether Christians nor infidels, but mere worldlings, seeking only
          to amass the wealth of this world, nothing would be thought or
          said against it. But for the Latter-day Saints to make a move to
          the right or to the left, to the front or to the rear, a
          suspicion arises directly in the minds of the people. I will say
          to the inhabitants of the whole earth, that the Latter-day Saints
          are going to work to sustain themselves, to do good to
          themselves, to their neighbors and to the whole human family;
          they are going to labor to establish peace and good order on the
          earth, just as far and as fast as they can, and to prepare them
          for a happier world than this.
          Talk about it, cry about it, deride it, point the finger of scorn
          at it, we care not, we are the servants and handmaids of the
          Lord, and our business is to build up his kingdom upon the earth,
          and let all the world say what they please, it matters not to us.
          It if for us to do our duty.
          Now let me present one little matter. Here are brethren from all
          parts of the Territory, to represent the different branches of
          the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We find our
          brethren in various parts of the Territory are in possession of a
          little land; take a man, for instance, who has got a five acre
          lot. He wants his team, he must have his horses, harness, wagon,
          plow, harrow and farming utensils to cultivate that five acres,
          just as though he was farming a hundred acres. And when harvest
          comes, he is not accommodated by his neighbors with a reaping
          machine, and he says--"Another year, I will buy one," and this to
          harvest five acres of grain. Take the article of wagons among
          this people, we have five where we should not have more than two;
          and the money that is spent needlessly by our people for wagons
          would make a small community rich. Again, take mowing and reaping
          machines, and we have probably twice or three times as many in
          this territory as the people need. They stand in the sun and they
          dry up and spoil, and this entails a heavy waste of property. We
          may take also the article of harness for horses. If this
          community would be untied, and work cattle instead of horses,
          they might save themselves from two to five hundred thousand
          dollars yearly. Is this economy or wisdom? A few years ago we
          raised our own sweet; but when the railroad came it brought sugar
          to us very cheap, and where is our sorghum now? There is hardly
          any raised in the whole Territory. The people say--"The sugar is
          so cheap." Suppose sugar was only one penny a pound, and you had
          not that penny and could not get it, what good would it do you?
          None at all. If cotton cloth can be bought for fifteen, ten, or
          six cents a yard, what does it profit a people if they have not
          the money to buy it? It does them no good. When they have the
          ground to raise the cotton, and the machinery to work this cotton
          up and make the fabrics they need, they can do it, money or no
          money. And so we go on from one thing to another, and we would be
          glad if our brethren, in their remarks, will give us their views
          and instructions on these points, and the bearing they have had
          upon the people in the past, and how they will affect them in
          connection with the United Order which we are now seeking to
          If a man, merchant, business man, or anybody else has anything to
          bring forward to show, as they think, that the United order will
          militate against the interests of the community, we invite them
          to speak the question. We are for the best, we are for the right,
          for that which will accomplish the greatest good to the greatest
          number. I shall now give place for others to speak.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / George
          Albert Smith, May 7, 1874
                          George Albert Smith, May 7, 1874
             Delivered at the Adjourned General Conference, held in the
                    New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, May 7, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          "Behold I will send you Elijah the Prophet, before the coming of
          the great and dreadful day of the Lord, and he shall turn the
          heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the
          children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a
          curse." This passage will be found in the 5th and 6th verses of
          the 4th chapter of the Prophet Malachi.
               The Latter-day Saints were driven from their homes in
          Jackson County, Missouri, about forty-one years ago. A portion of
          the mob commenced the outbreak in June or July, and among their
          first deeds of violence was the destruction of the printing
          office, plundering the storehouse, and the tarring and feathering
          of Edward Partridge, the Bishop. This was followed by whipping
          and killing people and burning their houses, and finally
          culminated, on the 13th of October, in driving some fifteen
          hundred persons from their homes, on the public lands which they
          had received titles for from the United States. The people thus
          driven went into different parts of the state, the great body of
          them, however, taking shelter in the County of Clay.
          The settlements in Jackson county were commenced on the principle
          of the law of consecration. If you read the revelations that were
          given, and the manner in which they were acted upon, you will
          find that the brethren brought, before the Bishop and his
          counselors, their property and consecrated it, and with the money
          and means thus consecrated lands were purchased, and inheritances
          and stewardships distributed among the people, all of whom
          regarded their property as the property of the Lord. There were,
          however, at that period, professed Latter-day Saints, who did not
          see proper to abide by this law of consecration; they thought it
          was their privilege to look after "number one," and some of them,
          believing that Zion was to become a very great city, and that
          being the centre stake of it, they purchased tracts of land in
          the vicinity with the intention of keeping them until Zion became
          the beauty and joy of the whole earth, when they thought they
          could sell their lands and make themselves very rich. It was
          probably owing to this, in part, that the Lord suffered the
          enemies of Zion to rise against her.
          The members of the Church at that period were very industrious,
          frugal, and law-abiding, and there was no possibility of framing
          any charges or claims against them by legal means, and the
          published manifesto, upon which the mob was collected, boldly
          asserted that the civil law did not afford a guarantee against
          this people, consequently they formed themselves into a
          combination, a lawless mob, pledging to each other "their lives,
          their property and their sacred honors" to drive the "Mormons"
          from their midst. From that hour the heart of every Latter-day
          Saint has been occasionally warmed with the feeling--may I be
          permitted to live until the day when the Saints shall again go to
          Jackson County, when they shall build the Temple, the ground for
          which was dedicated, and when the Order of Zion, as it was then
          revealed, shall be carried out! And it has been generally
          understood among us that the redemption of Zion would not occur
          upon any other principle than upon that of the law of
          Forty years and more have passed away since these events took
          place. We have been driven five times from our homes; five times
          we have been robbed of our inheritances. Our leaders and
          presiding officers have been killed, and not a single instance,
          in any State or Territory where we have lived, has the law been
          magnified in the protection of the Latter-day Saints, until we
          were driven into these mountains. In 1834, Daniel Dunklin, the
          Governor of Missouri, said the laws were ample, and the
          constitution was ample, but the prejudices of the people were so
          great that he and the other authorities of the State were
          powerless to execute the law for the protection of the Mormons.
          We have had one protector--our Father in heaven, to depend upon;
          but governors, judges, rulers, officers of any kind, high or low,
          have utterly failed to extend protection to the Latter-day
          Saints. God alone has been our protector, and we acknowledge his
          hand in every deliverance we have hitherto experienced.
          Several times the Church has made advances to organize the Order
          of Enoch as it was revealed in the Book of Covenants in part, and
          in the ancient history of the Zion of Enoch; these advances,
          however, the Saints did not seem prepared to receive. We have
          been gathered from many nations, and we have brought many notions
          and traditions with us, and it has seemed that with these notions
          and traditions we could not dispense. In 1838, an attempt was
          made in Caldwell County, Mo., the Latter-day Saints owning all
          the lands in the county, or all that were considered of any
          value. They organized Big Field United Firms, by which they
          intended to consolidate their property and to regard it as the
          property of the Lord and themselves only as stewards; but they
          had not advanced so far in this matter as to perfect their system
          before they were broken up and driven from the State. I
          understand that three hundred and eighteen thousand dollars in
          money was paid by the Saints to the United States for the lands
          in the State of Missouri, not one acre of which any one of us has
          been permitted to enjoy or to live upon since the year 1838, or
          the Spring of 1839; though at the time of the expulsion, the
          Commanding General, John W. Clarke, informed the people that if
          they would renounce their religious faith they could remain on
          their lands. He said that they were skillful mechanics,
          industrious and orderly, and had made more improvements in three
          years than the other inhabitants had in fifteen, and if they
          would renounce their faith they could remain. But they must hold
          no more meetings, prayer meetings, prayers circles or councils,
          and they must have no more Bishops or Presidents; and in view of
          their refusal to comply with these conditions, the edict of
          banishment, issued by the Governor of the State, was executed by
          this general with an army at his heels, and the Latter-day Saints
          were driven from their happy homes, and thousands of them
          scattered to the four winds of heaven.
          Since our arrival in these valleys, sermons have been preached
          from year to year, to illustrate to us the principles of oneness.
          We find that we are one, generally, in faith. We believe on the
          Lord Jesus Christ; we believe in the first principles of the
          Gospel--the doctrines of repentance, and baptism for the
          remission of sins, the laying on of hands for the gift of the
          Holy Ghost and the resurrection of the dead; we readily receive,
          by the power of the Holy Spirit, manifested to us through the
          Prophets, the doctrine of baptism for the dead, the holy
          anointing and the law of celestial marriage. This principle came
          in opposition to all our prejudices, yet when God revealed it,
          his Spirit bore testimony of its truth, and the Latter-day Saints
          received it almost en masse. In order to make a step in the right
          direction, and to prepare the people to return to Jackson County,
          the principles of co-operation were taught and their practice
          entered into; and for the purpose of instructing and encouraging
          the minds of the people upon the benefits of united action, from
          the earliest settlement of this Territory to the present time,
          the presiding Elders of the Church have, every Conference,
          endeavored to impress upon their minds the necessity of making
          themselves self-supporting. We have looked forward to the day
          when Babylon would fall, when we could not draw our supplies from
          her midst, and when our own ingenuity, talent, and skill must
          supply our wants. The effect of all this instruction is, that we
          have made some progress in many directions, but not so much as
          could have been desired.
          The cultivation of cotton was introduced in the South.
          Sheep-breeding has been extensively adopted, numerous factories
          have been erected to manufacture both the wool and the cotton
          produced. Several extensive tanneries have also been established
          for the manufacture of hides into leather, and various other
          kinds of business have been introduced with a view to making
          ourselves self-supporting.
          Within a few years the railroad has been constructed through our
          Territory, and the expense of freighting has been greatly
          reduced. Mines which, before the railroad was built, were
          perfectly worthless, have been developed and made to pay, and the
          minds of many of the people seem to have been impressed with the
          idea that we may expect some regular, general business to grow
          out of the production of the mines, and a great many have been
          led to neglect home manufactures, and to depend upon purchasing
          from abroad. Some settlements have, however, exerted themselves
          considerably to product clothing, and many articles within
          themselves. These circumstances are all clear before us. You go
          through Utah County, to-day, and say to a farmer, "Have you got
          any sorgum to sell?" "No, haven't raised any for two or three
          years; sugar is so cheap, we could not sell it." "I suppose you
          have plenty of sugar?" "No, we are out of sugar, we haven't any
          money to but it with." This is the position which our course of
          life has led us to, and which we already begin to feel.
          There is another principle connected with this matter which we
          should consider, and that is, when we as a community, in the
          valleys of the mountains, provide for our own wants, we are not
          subject to the fluctuations and difficulties that result from a
          money panic, or an interruption in the currency. When we came to
          this Conference a great many of us came with the determination to
          take such measures as should place us as a people on an
          independent footing, and hence we propose through our brethren,
          to go to work and organize a united order. There is at present a
          deficiency in our organization so far as our business relations
          are concerned. Of course, in every settlement, there are many
          industrious men, then there's some who are schemers; and as each
          man looks out for himself, that good principle which the Savior
          taught so strongly, that a man should love the Lord his God with
          all his heart, and his neighbor as himself, is in a great measure
          forgotten, and a few gather up the property, while many of the
          laboring men, who do most of the work, come out at the end of the
          year behind, without a full supply of the necessaries of life. To
          avoid this, a United Order would organize a community so that all
          the ingenuity, talent, skill, and energy it possessed would
          inure, to the good of the whole. This is the object and design in
          the establishment of these organizations. It is perfectly certain
          that there is in every community a sufficient amount of skill and
          energy and labor to supply its wants, and put all its member in
          possession of every necessary and comfort of life, if all this
          skill and energy be rightly directed. We propose to take measures
          to direct aright the labor that we have in our possession, and
          lay a foundation for comfort, happiness, plenty and the blessings
          of life within ourselves.
          We, further, do not believe that Latter-day Saints, in the
          service of the Most High, can enjoy that high degree of respect
          in the presence of the Almighty to which they are entitled, when
          they are biting, devouring, shaving, skinning, and manoeuvering,
          and out-manoeuvering and getting the advantage of each other in
          little petty deals. We want to see these things cease entirely,
          for we know that we can never be prepared for the coming of the
          Savior only by uniting and becoming one, in temporal as well as
          in spiritual things, and being prepared to enjoy the blessings of
          The principles of life, which we now present for the
          consideration of the Latter-day Saints were carried out in times
          past, as we read in the Book of Mormon, among the Nephites and
          Lamanites, who each enjoyed over a hundred years of unity, peace,
          happiness and plenty, as a result of adopting this system of
          unity; and if we will unite in one, acting in good faith, every
          man esteeming his brother as himself, regarding not what he
          possesses as his own, but the Lord's, all carrying out these
          principles, the result is certain--it is the enjoyment of the
          Spirit of the Lord, it is the light of eternity, it is the
          abundance of the things of this earth; it is an opportunity to
          provide education for our children, amusement and interest for
          ourselves, a knowledge of the things of the kingdom of God, and
          all sciences which are embraced therein, and an advance in the
          work of the last days, preparatory to the redemption of the
          centre stake of Zion.
          Brethren and sisters, think of these things, and as the spirit of
          the Almighty was in your hearts when you received the laying on
          of hands and the baptism of the Holy Spirit, bearing testimony
          that the Gospel of Jesus Christ was true, seek with all your
          hearts, and know, by the same spirit, that the establishment of
          the United Order, is another step towards the triumph of that
          great and glorious work for which we are continually laboring,
          namely the dawning of the Millennium and the commencement of the
          reign of Christ on the earth.
          This is the work of the Almighty. These principles are from God;
          they are for our salvation, and unless we remember and abide in
          them our progress will be slow. If we are slow to learn and
          progress, but try to carry out the purposes of God, He will not
          cast us off. He has been very patient with us these forty years,
          and he may continue to be so. But understand that the hearts of
          the fathers must be turned to the children and the hearts of the
          children to the fathers. A unity must exist, the Latter-day
          Saints must love one another, they must cease to worship this
          world's goods, they must lay a foundation to build up Zion and to
          be one, in order that they may be prepared for the great day that
          shall burn as an oven.
          I bear my testimony to you of the truth of the Gospel of Jesus
          Christ, of the Book of Mormon, of the ministry of Joseph Smith
          and of his servants the Elders that were called of the Lord by
          him, Brigham Young and the Apostles and Elders who have borne
          these testimonies to the nations of the earth and I say,
          brethren, give diligent heed to these things, lest by any means
          we should let them slip and come short of entering into rest.
          May the blessings of Israel's God be upon you for ever. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / John
          Taylor, May 7, 1874
                              John Taylor, May 7, 1874
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER JOHN TAYLOR,
               Delivered at the Adjourned General Conference, held in
                  the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, May 7, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          Those things which we have been listening to are of very great
          importance to the Latter-day Saints. Situated as we are,
          entertaining the views that we do, in possession of the light and
          intelligence that have been communicated unto us, we stand, in
          these respects, in an entirely different position from that of
          the world with which we are surrounded; and, as has already been
          stated, it is necessary that we begin to reflect a little upon
          that which has been revealed to us, that we may understand our
          position and relationship to each other, the duties and
          responsibilities that devolve upon us as fathers, as mother, as
          children, as Elders of Israel, and in all the various
          relationships of life, and that we may comprehend the
          requirements made of us by our heavenly Father. Some of those
          things which have been presented before us are obvious to every
          reflecting mind, there is nothing strange, anomalous or peculiar
          about them; they are things which have been more or less
          advocated by different statesmen among the various nations of the
          earth, and, according to circumstances, they have been adopted,
          more or less, by a great many people, and we, the Latter-day
          Saints, have approached nearer to them than many of us seem to
          have any idea of. There would not be time, at present, to enter
          into an elaborate detail of the various plans, ideas and workings
          involved in the principles which have been presented before us
          this morning; but in taking a cursory view of our position, we
          shall find that it is very different from that of any other
          people. We have already carried out a great many of those things
          which have been referred to, that is, a great many of us have;
          not all. The position that we have occupied in this nation, in
          the States of Missouri and Illinois, and in the various countries
          of those States, and the history of this people has been a very
          peculiar one. It is true, as has been said, that if we would give
          up our religion, and act and feel as others act and feel, we
          should be hail fellows well met with the world, and we could have
          the fellowship of the devil and all his imps. We could have this
          all the time if we would conform our ideas to theirs. But what
          are their ideas? Who can describe them? They are simply a babel
          of contrarities, contradictions, confusion, ignorance, darkness,
          speculation, mystery, folly, vanity, crime, iniquity and every
          kind of evil that man can think of, and if we were willing to
          join in with this it would be all right, and we should be hail
          fellows well met. But we do not propose to do that. God has
          spoken from the heavens; the light and intelligence which exist
          in the eternal worlds have been communicated, the heavens have
          been opened and the revelations of God given to man, and we have
          participated in them in part, and the light thus received has
          enabled us to look at the world as it is; it has opened to our
          view the visions of eternity; it has made us acquainted with our
          God, with the principles of truth, and we would not barter that
          for all the world has to give us. We rejoice, therefore, and
          thank God for the light and intelligence that he has communicated
          to us, and so far we have measurably been one, and we could not
          have helped ourselves and prevented it, if we had desired to, for
          the world was determined to make us one, or make hypocrites of
          us, like themselves; one of the two. We had either got to be one,
          or deny the principles that God has implanted in every honest
          man's soul, and we would not do that. No man will barter his
          independence, no man will barter his convictions, no man, who is
          intelligent and honorable, will barter his religion or his
          politics at the caprice of any other man. God has implanted
          certain principles in man, and as long as manhood is retained
          they can not be obliterated, they are written there as in letters
          of living fire, and there they will remain so long as we retain
          our manhood and standing before God. What has been the result of
          this, so far as it has gone? Why, when the people in Missouri
          proposed that we should live among them in peace if we would
          leave our religion, did we do it? Not quite. What did we do? We
          clung to our religion. And what did those honest, generous,
          gentle, intelligent, Christian people do? Robbed us of nearly all
          we possessed and with the balance we agreed to help one another
          to get to some place where men could worship God according to the
          dictates of their conscience, if such a place could be found in
          republican America. Well, we left. Did we unite? Yes, we did; and
          every man that had a team, a wagon, two, three or four horses,
          two, three, four, five or six yoke of cattle, or bread, money or
          clothing, distributed among his brethren, and we helped one
          another out until every man who wanted to leave had left. There
          might have been a few miserable "skeezeks," such as we have among
          us here, a few miserable hounds left, but what of them? Why,
          nothing at all, they did not think anything of themselves, and
          nobody thought anything of them.
               We commenced again in Illinois, just on the same principle.
          There we built a Temple, and performed the ordinances of God in
          his house; there we attended to our sacraments, entered into our
          covenants, and commenced anew to worship God according to the
          dictates of our own consciences, and there again we found a lot
          of Christians, just the same as in Missouri, who did not like our
          religion. Said they--"Gentlemen, we do not like your religion,
          but if you will be like us, you can live among us; if you do not
          believe and worship as we do, you can not stay here." Well, we
          could not quite come it then, any more than we did before; and
          they killed Joseph Smith and Hyrum Smith, burnt our houses,
          destroyed our property, and let loose mobs upon us, and deprived
          us of the right of American citizens; and finally we had to leave
          the States and come out among the red men of the desert, that we
          might find that protection among the savages that Christendom
          denied us. How did we get here? We helped one another. In the
          Temple that we had erected, and dedicated to the Most High God,
          we lifted up our hands before God, and covenanted before him that
          we would help one another leave that land, so long as there was
          one left in it who desired to leave. Did we keep this covenant?
          We did. Why? Because we felt an interest in the welfare of our
          brethren; we believed in our religion, in building up the kingdom
          of God, and in carrying out his purposes and designs. The
          Christians object to all this? Of course they do, but who cares
          about them? I do not, not one straw; we have had so much of their
          tender mercies, that they take no effect now upon us. Again, we
          pay our Tithing. Some may inquire--"Do not the Priesthood rob
          you?" I do not know, I do not think we are robbed very much or
          that we are very much injured. We do not do enough of it to be
          injured very much, we are something like what the boy said of his
          father. A man asked a boy--"Are you a Mormon?" "Yes." "Is your
          father a Mormon?" Said the boy--"Yes, but he don't potter much at
          it." There are a great many of us who do not potter much at it,
          but still we make the attempt.
          What have we done since we came here? Before the railroad was
          made we sent from here, year after year, as many as five hundred
          teams to help the poor who were unable to help themselves. Hence
          you see that a good deal of this unity of action has been carried
          out among us, but we have only pottered a little at it, we have
          not got right into the matter, only in part.
          Our Ladies' Relief and others societies and organizations have
          done a good deal of this kind of thing, and they are looking
          after the interests of the poor, the widow and the fatherless.
          What is the business of our Bishops? Why, to attend to these
          things. Do they do it? They do. And then, if there is any
          enterprise or anything required, the people are ready to take
          hold and do it, independent, say, of these covenants we have
          heard spoken of. A short time ago, in St. George, they commenced
          to build a Temple. Men were called upon from different parts,
          some from this city, a great many from Sanpete County, and from
          the different settlements, to go and assist down in that locality
          in building the Temple. Did they do it? Yes. Was there much
          grunting about it? I have not heard that there was. I happened to
          be in a meeting a short time ago, and it was said they wanted a
          little means to help to clothe these men, and to furnish them
          certain things, and in a very little while there were some ten or
          twelve hundred dollars subscribed, without any grunting. There is
          a feeling of sympathy in the hearts of Latter-day Saints towards
          one another, and for the upbuilding and advancement of the
          kingdom of God. But yet some of us are a little startled when we
          hear about uniting our properties, &c. I am amused sometimes to
          see the manifestation of feeling by some on this subject. We have
          bee praying a long while that we might go back to Jackson County,
          and build up the Centre Stake of Zion; that we might enter into
          the United Order of God, and be one in both temporal and
          spiritual things, in fact in everything; yet when it comes along
          it startles us, we are confused and hardly know what to think of
          it. This reminds me of an anecdote which I will relate to you.
          Among the passengers on a steamer crossing the Atlantic, was a
          very zealous minister who was all the time preaching to those on
          board about the glory and happiness of heaven, and how happy they
          would be when they got there. During the voyage a very heavy
          storm arose, and the vessel was drifted from her course and was
          in great danger of striking on a reef of rocks. The captain went
          to examine his chart, and after a while returned with a very
          sorrowful face, and said--"Ladies and gentlemen, in twenty
          minutes from this time we shall all be in heaven." "God forbid!"
          said the minister. Many of us are a good deal like this minister;
          for years we have been talking about a new order of things, about
          union and happiness, and about going back to Jackson County, but
          the moment it is presented to us we say--"God forbid." But then
          on sober, second thought, another feeling seems to inspire us,
          and wherever we go a spirit seems to rest upon the people which
          leads them almost unanimously to embark in these things; and when
          we reflect, saying nothing about our religion, an extended system
          of co-operation seems to agree with every principle of good
          common sense. Is there anything extraordinary or new in the
          doctrine that it is well for a community to be self-sustaining?
          Why, the Whigs, you know, of this country, have contended on that
          principle from the time of the organization of the government,
          and they have sanctioned it and plead in its behalf before
          Congress, in political caucuses, and before the people up to the
          present time. There is nothing new in the doctrine of a people
          being self-sustaining. The first Napoleon introduced into France
          what is known as the "Continental system," which encouraged the
          production of all necessary articles at home, and it is the
          results of this system which to-day gives stability to France,
          and has enabled her, after the several trials of the late war, to
          pay off her indebtedness and stand independent among the nations.
          Now, for instance, we require a great many things in connection
          with human existence. We need boots and shoes, stockings, pants,
          vests, coats, hats, handkerchiefs, shirts, we need cloth of
          various kinds, and dresses, shawls, bonnets, &c., and in every
          reflecting mind, the question naturally arises, Is it better for
          us to make these things ourselves at home, or to have somebody
          abroad make them for us? Is it better for each man to labor
          separately, as we do now, or to be organized so as to make the
          most of our labor? We have a large number of hides here in this
          Territory, what do we do with them generally? Send them to the
          States. We raise a large amount of wool here, what do we do with
          it? We export a great deal of it to the States. We have got a
          large amount of excellent timber here, what do we do for our
          furniture? We send to the States for a great deal of it. Where do
          we get our pails and our washtubs, and all our cooper ware from?
          We send to the States for it. Where do we get our brooms from?
          From the States; and so on all the way through the catalogue, and
          millions on millions of dollars are sent out of the Territory
          every year, for the purchase of articles, most of which we could
          manufacture and raise at home. This is certainly very poor
          economy, for we have thousands and thousands of men who are
          desirous to get some kind of employment, and they cannot get it.
          Why? Because other people are making our shoes, hats, clothing,
          bonnets, silks, artificial flowers, and many other things that we
          need. This may do very well for a while in an artificial state of
          society; but the moment any reverse comes that kind of think is
          upset, and all our calculations are destroyed.
          I believe in organizing the tanners and having the hides tanned
          at home. When the hides are tanned I believe in organizing the
          shoemakers, and manufacturing our own shoes and boots. I believe
          in keeping our wool at home, and in having it manufactured in our
          own factories, and we have got as good factories here as
          anywhere. They should work up all the wool in the country, and if
          there is not enough raised to keep them running, import more.
          Then I believe in organizing men to take care of our stock--our
          cattle and sheep, and increasing the clip of wool, that we may
          have enough to meet the demands of the whole community. Then,
          when our cloth is made, I believe in organizing the tailors'
          companies to manufacture that cloth into clothing--pants, coats,
          vests, and everything of the kind that we need. Then for our
          furniture, I believe in going into the mountains and cutting down
          the timber, framing it into proper shape, and then manufacturing
          the various articles of furniture that we need; if we require
          another kind of timber, import that, but make the furniture here.
          When we talk about co-operation, we have entered but very little
          into it, and it has been almost exclusively confined to the
          purchase of goods. There is not much in that. I wish we would
          learn how to produce them instead of purchasing them. I wish we
          could concentrate our energies, and organize all hands, old,
          middle-aged and young, male and female, and put them under proper
          directions, and proper materials to manufacture everything we
          need to wear and use. We have forgotten even how to make sorghum
          molasses, and our memories are getting short on other points. We
          can hardly make a hat or coat, or a pair of boots and shoes, but
          we have to send to the States and import these paper ones, which
          last a very short time and then drop to pieces, and you have your
          hands continually in your pockets to supply these wants, and by
          and by your pockets are empty. It is therefore necessary that we
          right about face, and begin to turn the other end to, and be
          The President said he would like the Elders to give both sides of
          the question; but there is only one side to this question, and
          that is union in all our operations, in everything we engage in.
          They started a little thing like this in Box Elder County some
          time ago, and I was very much pleased to see the way things went
          there. I have spoken about it once or twice in public. They have
          got their co-operative store, it is true; but that is only a
          small part of it. Sometime ago I asked them--"You have a factory
          here, haven't you?" "Yes." "Well, do you sell your wool, send it
          to the States to mix up with shoddy and get an inferior article,
          or do you make it up yourselves?" "We make it up ourselves."
          "Then you don't sell your wool, and keep the factory standing
          idle?" "No, we don't, our factory has never stood idle a day for
          want of wool since it was organized." Said I--"That looks right.
          What do you do with your hides? Do you send them off?" "No, we
          have got a very good tannery and we tan them and make them into
          leather for shoes, and for harness and for other purposes." "Oh,
          indeed!" "Yes, that is the way it is." "Well, then, what next?"
          "Why, when we get our shoes made, we have a saddlers'
          organizations, and they make all the saddlery and harness we
          want?" "And what do you do with your cows? Do you let them run on
          the plains, and live or die, just as it happens, without making
          any cheese or butter?" "No, we have a co-operative dairy, and we
          have our cows in that, and we receive so much from them all the
          time regularly." "Well," said I, "that looks right. And are you
          all interested in this?" "Well, about two-thirds or three-fourths
          of us are all engaged in these matters." "How about your store,
          does it run away with the best part of it?" "No." "Does the
          factory get the cream of it?" "No." "Does some keen financial man
          get his fingers in and grab it?" "No, we are all mutually
          interested in everything, the profits as well as the losses." I
          have learned, since I was there, that they have made it a great
          Now, then, if you can organize one little thing in that way,
          everything can be done in the same way. I was talking with
          President Lorenzo Snow, and he told me that they pay their men
          every Saturday night; they have a money of their own, and they
          pat their hands with it, and that is good for everything they
          require. And they make their arrangements unitedly, and they
          operate together for the general good. Said I--"How do they feel
          about this United Order?" "Oh," I was told, "They are ready for
          anything that God may send along." That is the feeling among the
          Saints, I believe generally. I was, I think, at the biggest
          meeting I ever attended in Ogden City, along with some of the
          Presidency and Twelve and others, and I never saw more unanimity
          among the people on any question than on this one. That big
          Tabernacle was full, and the aisles were full, and everything was
          jammed to overflowing, and when a vote was called, nearly every
          hand went up. I thank God that his spirit is operating upon the
          Latter-day Saints, and is leading them to a union in regard to
          these things.
          May God help us, and lead us in the right path, in the name of
          Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 /
          Wilford Woodruff, May 8, 1874
                            Wilford Woodruff, May 8, 1874
           Delivered at the Adjourned General Conference, held in the New
                    Salt Lake City, Friday Morning, May 8, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                                  THIS GENERATION.
          We had a request given to us, at the opening of the conference,
          yesterday morning, by President Young, to give evidences for and
          against the United Order of Zion. I do not know that I should be
          a very able advocate against it. I have been looking over in my
          own mind, the arguments which might be brought against it, and
          there are a few things I will name. If we were to undertake to
          unite according to the spirit and letter of this order it would,
          in one sense of the word, deprive us of having half a dozen
          candidates at elections, as is the custom generally in the
          Christian world. It would, in a measure, deprive these candidates
          of the opportunity of spending a month or two stump-speeching to
          get the votes of the people; then, when the election came, of
          paying for two or three barrels of bad whiskey to treat those who
          are going to vote for them. Then it might deprive Alderman
          Clinton, or some other justice of the peace, of the chance of
          collecting two or three hundred dollars as fines from those who
          had committed a breach of the peace. It might deprive the
          Benedicts and other surgeons of the opportunity of collecting
          five hundred or a thousand dollars for mending broken arms and
          legs got in free fights. Probably it would deprive the people of
          the opportunity of spending fifty or a hundred thousand dollars a
          year in importing mustard into this Territory, and require the
          farmers to collect and use that which is now a nuisance on their
          fields. It might also deprive us of the privilege of paying a
          hundred thousand dollars for the imported brooms, and require us
          to plant two or three hundred acres of broom corn. These are
          about the only objections that I can think of against the order,
          though you might carry it out in detail, perhaps, a good deal
          further; but with regard to the benefits arising from it, they
          are so numerous that it would take a long time to enumerate them.
          I do not think it requires a great deal of argument to prove to
          us that union is strength, and that a united people have power
          which a divided people do not possess.
          I am very glad that I have lived long enough to see a day when
          the hearts of the people can be united so as to carry out these
          things, while they also act upon their own agency in receiving
          and obeying them. We have been a good many years preaching up the
          necessity of the Latter-day Saints being one in temporal as well
          as in spiritual things, and I have felt, for a long time, in my
          own mind, that there must be a change among us. The way we have
          been drifting, has not seemed to have a tendency, as a general
          thing, to carry out the purposes of the Lord, and to prepare us,
          as a people, for those events which await us.
          In our spiritual labors we have been united in a measure, and in
          some things perhaps in a temporal point of view. Now, for
          instance, the case I referred to in regard to our elections. I do
          not think that, for the twenty-four years we have resided in
          these valleys, any man has ever paid a sixpence in order to
          obtain any office to which he has been elected by the votes of
          the people, whether as a Delegate to the Congress of the United
          States, Governor of the Territory, member of the legislature,
          probate judge, or any other office. I do not think that any man
          who has been in office has ever even asked for it in any shape or
          manner. So far as this is concerned we have been united, and we
          have one consolation in regard to our officers, I do not believe
          there has ever been a single defaulter among them in the whole
          Territory, so far as dollars and cents are concerned, in any
          office. In this respect then we see the advantage of being
          There are very many advantages that will accrue to us if we unite
          our hearts, feelings, labors, interests, property, and everything
          that we are made stewards over, One thing is certain, we can not
          continue in the course that we have pursued in regard to temporal
          matters. It is suicidal for any people to import ten dollars'
          worth of products while they export only one, and it is a miracle
          and a wonder to me that we have lived as long as we have under
          this order of things. We have sent millions of dollars out of the
          Territory every year, for articles for our home consumption,
          while we have exported but very little; hence I say that the
          establishment and success of this new order among us will bring
          about our temporal salvation. 
          We occupy a different position from the rest of the world. We
          believe in the revelations of Jesus Christ contained in the Bible
          as well as in the record or stick of Joseph in the hands of
          Ephraim,--the Book of Mormon, which gives a history of the
          ancient inhabitants of this continent, We also believe in the
          Book of Revelations, which were given through the mouth of Joseph
          Smith, the Prophet, to the Latter-day Saints and to the
          inhabitants of the earth. Inasmuch, then, as we believe these
          things, we, if we carry out our faith, must of necessity go to
          and prepare ourselves for the fulfillment of the revelations of
          God. When we are in possession of the Spirit of God we understand
          that there is a change at the door, not only for us but for all
          the world. There are certain events awaiting the nations of the
          earth as well as Zion; and when these events overtake us we will
          be preserved if we take the counsel that is given us and unite
          our time, labor and means, and produce what we need for our own
          use; but without this we shall not be prepared to sustain
          ourselves and we shall suffer loss and inconvenience thereby. I
          am satisfied that as a people, pursuing the cause we have pursued
          hitherto, we are not prepared for the Zion of Enoch or the
          kingdom of God. There was an order carried out anciently by the
          people of this continent and by the people of the city of Enoch,
          wherever that was located, which was very different from the
          practice which has prevailed among the Saints of latter days; and
          as far as such a system being any injury to us I can see none in
          the world. I can see no injury that can overtake the Latter-day
          Saints, by their uniting together, according to the law of God,
          and producing from the elements that which they need to eat,
          drink and wear, and I feel as though the time has come for such
          an order to be instituted; and the readiness with which the
          people receive the teachings of the servants of God in regard to
          this matter is a testimony that the time has come to favor Zion.
          The Spirit of God bears witness to the congregations of the
          Saints of the importance of the principles which have been given
          unto us, and hence their readiness to receive them.
          From the commencement of this work to the present day, the labor
          has been harder with the servants of God to get the people
          prepared in their hearts to let the Lord govern and control them
          in their temporal labor and means than in regard to the matters
          pertaining to their eternal salvation. It was hard work for
          Joseph Smith to get the minds of the people prepared even to
          receive the Gospel in his day. But the Lord opened the way, the
          Gospel was preached and the Church was organized in its purity
          and in the order in which it existed in the days of Jesus Christ
          and the Apostles and wherever the Gospel has been sent the ears
          of the people have been more or less opened and a portion of them
          have been ready to receive it. This Gospel has been preached in
          every Christian nation under heaven where the laws would permit,
          and people from these various nations have overcome their
          traditions so far as to obey it; but, as I remarked before, it
          has been had work for the Latter-day Saints to bring themselves
          to such a state of mind as to be willing for the Lord to govern
          them in their temporal labors. There is something strange about
          this, but I think, probably, it is in consequence of the position
          that we occupy. There is a vail between man and eternal things;
          if that vail was taken away and we were able to see eternal
          things as they are before the Lord, no man would be tried with
          regard to gold, silver or this world's goods, and no man, on
          their account, would be unwilling to let the Lord control him.
          But here we have an agency, and we are in a probation, and there
          is a vail between us and eternal things, between us and our
          heavenly Father and the spirit world; and this for a wise and
          proper purpose in the Lord our God, to prove whether the children
          of men will abide in his law or not in the situation in which
          they are place here. Latter-day Saints, reflect upon these
          things. We have been willing, with every feeling of our hearts,
          that Joseph Smith, President Young, and the leaders of the people
          should guide and direct us in regard to our eternal interests;
          and the blessings sealed upon us by their authority reach the
          other side of the vail and are in force after death, and they
          affect our destiny to the endless ages of eternity. Men, in the
          days of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and of Jesus and the Apostles,
          had blessings sealed upon them, kingdoms, thrones, principalities
          and powers, with all the blessings of the New and Everlasting
          Covenant. The question may be asked, are these eternal blessings
          of interest to us? They are, or should be. Are these blessings
          worth our earthly wealth, whether we have little or much? Is
          salvation, is eternal life worth a yoke of cattle, a house, a
          hundred acres of land, or anything that we possess here in the
          flesh? If it is, we certainly ought to be as ready to permit the
          Lord to govern and control us in all our temporal labors as we
          are in our spiritual labors.
          Again, when a man dies he can not take his cattle, horses, houses
          or lands with him; he goes to the grave--the resting place of all
          flesh. No man escapes it, the law of death rests upon all. In
          Adam all die, while in Christ all are made alive. We all
          understand that death has passed upon all men, but we none of us
          know when our turn will come, though we know it will not be a
          great while before we shall be called to follow the generation
          who have preceded us. When we reflect upon these things I thing
          we all should be willing to let the Lord guide us in temporal
          matters. In the Book of Mormon we learn that the ancient
          Nephites, who dwelt on this continent, entered into, and
          continued in, this order for nearly two hundred years. They were
          wealthy and happy and the Lord blessed them. They had no poor
          among them. They were united in heart and in spirit, and the
          blessings of the Lord rested upon them. It is true they occupied
          a different position in one sense to what we do. They entered
          into this order just after the Lord had brought judgment upon the
          whole nation on account of their wickedness, and many of the
          wicked had been destroyed: their cities had also been destroyed,
          and it was while humbled by these judgments that they entered the
          United Order. But a reign of peace and prosperity rested upon
          them and continued until they broke the order and began to go,
          every man for himself and the devil for them all, then utter
          destruction soon overtook them.
          It is different with us. We are entering this order before the
          wicked are destroyed. We commence it to prepare us for the great
          events which are at the door, for if the judgments of God ever
          were at the door of any generation it is this. The whole volume
          of Scripture points these things out to us in plain language, and
          all the unbelief of the inhabitants of the earth will not alter
          the fact, it will not change the hand of God nor stay his
          judgments, which are at the door of Great Babylon. She will come
          in remembrance before God, and he will hold a controversy with
          the nations; his sword is unsheathed and it will fall on Idumea,
          the world, and who can stay his hand? These things have been
          proclaimed by almost every Prophet who has ever spoken since the
          world began. They point to our day, and their words must have
          their fulfillment.
          Over forty years of the Gospel of Christ has been proclaimed to
          this generation and to the whole Christian world as far as we
          have had opportunity. Light has come into the world, but men have
          rejected it because their deeds are evil, hence the judgments of
          God will rest upon the nations of the earth in fulfillment of his
          word through the Prophets. The Lord has called upon us to unite
          together and take hold of this work, and to prepare ourselves for
          the great events which are at hand, that when the destroying
          angels go forth to reap the earth, beginning at the sanctuary,
          they need not destroy any man upon whom is the mark set by the
          writer with the inkhorn, who cried and mourned because of the
          abominations done among men. The Prophet, in seeing the vision of
          these things in the last days, saw that the earth was reaped, and
          the reapers began at the sanctuary, and the wicked were cut off
          by the judgments of God.
          The world now do not believe this any more than they believed in
          the days of Noah and Lot, and they are no more prepared for it,
          and they are growing wickeder and wickeder every day of their
          lives. Wickedness is increasing, for the devil has great dominion
          over the hearts of the children of men. The Lord is trying to
          direct and dictate his Saints, and I feel that it is our duty, as
          a people, to unite our interests together, also our time,
          talents, labor and all that we are stewards over, that, as men
          who have faith in God, we may be prepared for those things which
          await us, and for the coming of the Son of Man. We are observing
          the signs of the times, and we can readily understand the
          necessity of entering into this order. I think we can all see
          this if we enjoy any portion of the spirit of our religion and
          the work of the Lord, which we profess to be engaged in. I can
          see everything in favor but nothing against the United Order.
          These teaching are of the Lord; the servants of God have been
          moved to call upon the people, and the Lord has moved upon the
          people, and their hearts are being touched by the light of the
          Holy Spirit, and they are entering into this organization; and my
          feeling is that if you and I, who profess to be the friends of
          God, and have entered into a covenant with him, withdraw our
          hearts from him that we do not see the necessity of uniting
          ourselves according to this law of God, we shall begin to dry up,
          and what little life, light, or spirit we have will leave us and
          we shall go down and we shall not walk in the light of the Lord.
          I view it as a day of decision to the Latter-day Saints
          throughout the whole Church and kingdom of God, and we shall find
          it to our advantage to decide rightly, and to walk in the path
          marked out for us by the servants of the Lord.
          I feel to say God bless the Latter-day Saints and the honest in
          heart and meek of the earth throughout the whole world, and I
          pray that the nations may be prepared for that which is to come,
          for as God lives there is a change at the door, and what the
          ancient patriarchs and Prophets said will be fulfilled; and if I
          were to express my feelings as the spirit reveals to me it would
          be a good deal as Daniel said, that all who will not prepare
          themselves for the coming of Christ must get out of the way, for
          the little stone that was cut out of the mountains without hands
          will shortly grind them to powder, and they will be cast away as
          the chaff of the summer threshing floor. The kingdom of God,
          which Daniel saw, the Zion of God in embryo, is on the earth, and
          is here in these mountains; and it will rise and rise, until it
          is clothed with the glory of God.
          May God help us to prepare for his coming and kingdom, for
          Christ's sake. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 /
          Erastus Snow, May 8, 1874
                              Erastus Snow, May 8, 1874
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER ERASTUS SNOW,
           Delivered at the Adjourned General Conference, held in the New
                    Salt Lake City, Friday Morning, May 8, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                         CONFIDENCE IN OUR HEARTS WITH GOD.
          The United Order of Zion, proposed for our consideration, as will
          be seen from the remarks that have been made by former speakers,
          and from the articles which were read yesterday afternoon, is a
          great, comprehensive, co-operative system, designed to improve us
          who enter into it, financially, socially, morally and
          religiously; it will aid us, as Latter-day Saints, in living our
          religion, and in building up Zion, and help us, by a combined
          effort, to cultivate every virtue, to put from us every vice, to
          conduct ourselves and our children sensibly, and to dispense with
          childish follies; it will enable us to adopt sensible and
          discreet fashions and habits of life and style of dress and
          manners; all of which can be effected by combined efforts, but
          not easily in our individual capacities. For what man, however
          good be his desires, can control himself and his family in their
          habits and manners of life and fashions, without the aid of the
          surrounding community? What sensible man can hold me or my
          brethren responsible, in all respects, either for ourselves or
          our households, unaided by the community and while the community
          are all working against us? But when the community learn to work
          together, and are agreed in a common purpose, what is it that
          they can not accomplish? Union is strength, and a combination of
          labor and capital will give us power at home and abroad. Our
          former co-operative systems in this Territory have accomplished
          very great good for us, but they have been only combinations of
          capital; the proposed system embraces labor as well as capital,
          and it designs to make the interests of capital and labor
          identical. True, there is one feature in the articles read
          yesterday which may require a little modification; it is at least
          a good subject for mature reflection and consideration before
          their final adoption; and these articles are presented before the
          people for this purpose.
          The combination of labor and capital in this order will enable us
          to promote all branches of industry which shall appear, in the
          judgment of the common Order, to be for the general good. At
          present, capitalists are loth to engage in any enterprise which
          does not vouchsafe to them profitable returns. It has been said
          by some among us that the best argument in favor of co-operation,
          was large dividends; but this is an argument that appeals only to
          cupidity and avarice, and is especially acceptable to the man who
          sees nothing but the god of this world to worship. Large
          dividends corrupt the morals of a community, just as large
          speculations and the profit resulting therefrom; for however
          desirable in a financial point of view to those engaged in them,
          their tendency is always to intoxicate the brains, and lead those
          engaged therein to further follies, until they overreach and ruin
          themselves. Moderation is as valuable in financial affairs as in
          social ethics, moderation in all speculation and in all business,
          fair profits for labor, fair dividends for capital, and the use
          of that capital and labor to promote the greatest good of the
          greatest number, and not for my own dear self. The selfishness
          that is limited to our own persons savors of the lower instincts
          of our natures, and comes not from above.
          Objections arise in the minds of some. "Shall we not by entering
          into this order, surrender our manhood, our personal liberty, and
          those rights so dear to every human being?" I answer, no, not in
          the least. We do no more than what all people do in the formation
          of government, of every kind, or associations for any purpose,
          whether charitable, religious or social. All organizations,
          corporations, and business firms agree to surrender certain
          personal privileges in order to secure mutual advantages. All
          governments, societies, corporations and firms are founded upon
          the principle of mutual concessions to secure mutual advantages.
          Without this there would be no government, no power to arrest and
          punish criminals and protect the rights of the citizen and the
          sanctity of home.
          The Order proposed before us affords the utmost freedom and
          liberty. All things shall be done by common consent, and all the
          Branches of the Order, throughout all the land, are to be
          organized by the selection of the wisest, best and most
          experienced persons in their midst, to form their councils, and
          to direct their business affairs and the labors of the community,
          for the best possible good of the whole, and not to the
          individual advantage of a few, who may be schemers or who may
          have acquired an education by which they were enabled to
          over-reach their fellow-men financially.
          The grand principle upon which the Gospel of life and salvation
          is founded and on which Zion is to be built, is brotherly love
          and good will to man. This was the theme of the angels of God in
          announcing the birth of the Savior. Hitherto, under our old
          systems, it has been "every man for himself, and the devil for us
          all;" but the principle which the Lord proposes is that we should
          square our lives by a higher and holier one, namely, every one
          for the whole and God for us all.
          Will this Order benefit the rich? Yes, it will afford security
          for themselves and families and their capital. It is a mutual
          insurance institution. Will it afford security and protection to
          the poor and the honest laborer? Yes, it will lay a foundation
          for wealth and comfort for them, and their families after them.
          Is it a free school system? It is a mutual education system.
          Free? Not to the lazy, vicious and wicked, but it is a mutual
          education system for the good and industrious, who abide in the
          Order and fulfill the obligations thereof. Who shall be heirs of
          the common property? Every child who is born in the Order. Heirs
          to the whole of it. No, nobody will be heir to the whole of it.
          To what portion of it will they be heirs? Just what they need.
          Who shall be the judges? Themselves, if they judge correctly; and
          if they do not, somebody will judge more correctly for them.
          "Well, shall I surrender my judgment to anybody else?" Of course,
          you will; we all agree to that, if it must needs be. But he who
          judges for himself correctly shall not be judged, but he who is
          unable to judge himself, but covets everything that he sees, and
          wishes to scatter and destroy what others are seeking to
          accumulate and preserve, must have a bit put in his mouth and
          some, who are more sensible, must handle the reins. This is not
          agrarian doctrine, to level those who are exalted, down to the
          mean level of those who are in the mire, but it is the Godlike
          doctrine of raising those who are of low estate and placing them
          in a better condition, by teaching them economy, and prudence; it
          is for the strong to foster and bear the infirmities of the weak,
          for those who possess skill and ability to accumulate and
          preserve this worlds' goods, to use them for the common good, and
          not merely for their own persons, children and relatives, so as
          to exalt themselves in pride and vanity over their fellow-men,
          and sink themselves to ruin by worshiping the God of this world.
          This is beneath the character of those who profess to be the
          people of God. We have done that long enough, But the word of God
          to us is to change our front, and to learn to love our neighbor
          as ourselves and so cultivate the spirit of the Gospel.
          As to the minutae of the workings of the various Branches of this
          Order, the details of the business and the relations of life, one
          meeting of this kind would not suffice to tell, nor could the
          people comprehend it if we were able to tell it; but it will be
          revealed to us as we pass along, line upon line, precept upon
          precept, here a little and there a little, and everything
          necessary will appear in its time and place and none need be
          over-anxious to pass over the bridge before they reach it. God
          does not reveal to us everything at once, for our minds are not
          prepared to comprehend it. Like children we must have experience
          as we pass along. One thing is sufficient for us to understand,
          and that is that this Order has made all nations and peoples who
          have entered into and practiced it prosperous.
          If any one doubts for a moment the success and final triumph of
          these principles, that doubt is founded only in his own weakness,
          and in the weakness of his fellow-men around him, and the
          selfishness that is in our natures. If we are determined to make
          it a success there is no power beneath the heavens that can make
          it a failure. If we engage in it with full purpose of heart, with
          faith towards God, and seeking to cultivate confidence towards
          one another, and are outspoken and frank in all our business
          relations and intercourse with each other, and do all things by
          common consent, with a just and honest purpose of soul, there is
          no power that can hinder our succeeding in our undertaking. But
          if we are determined to be selfish, and seek to build ourselves
          up on the weaknesses of our fellows, instead of building up the
          kingdom of our God, we ought to go down, and the sooner the
          better. For the last dozen years many of this people have been
          going on in the way that our fathers and the world generally walk
          in; and instead of building up Zion, have been after their
          personal and individual interests. Forty years have passed over
          us as a people during which we have been trying a little to carry
          on the work of God; but we have been like the wary trout in the
          stream, we have been nibbling around the hook, but we have never
          swallowed the bait. Now the hook is placed before us naked, and
          we are simply asked the question, "Will you take it or not?"
          "What, are we going to be caught?" Yes, this is the fear--"We are
          going to be caught by the wily fisherman--we are going to be
          enslaved. Has not somebody got an eye on our property? Does not
          somebody wish to have our horses and carriages, our fine houses,
          our substance, and the property we have gathered together?" Yes,
          the Lord has an eye on all this, for it belongs to him. Which of
          us has anything that does not belong to him? Where have we got
          that which we possess? Who has given us ability to accumulate and
          preserve? To whom are we accountable for our talents and gifts,
          as well as our substance? The Lord has his eye upon all this. Is
          he anxious about our property? No. This anxiety is in our own
          breasts, and if we have any idols the sooner we put them away the
          better. The Lord cares nothing about our houses and lands, our
          goods and chattels, our gold, silver or raiment, for all upon the
          earth belongs to him, and at the best it is only something that
          perishes with the using. He requires us to be faithful in the use
          of it, for he has said, "He that is not faithful with the
          unrighteous mammon, who shall commit to him the true riches?"
          True riches relate to eternity; the riches that relate to this
          life all perish with the using. Our houses, horses, carriages,
          clothing, and our gold and silver perish with the using, together
          with our tabernacles. We look to a glorious resurrection, to a
          new and enduring earth, to riches that are immortal, to the
          habitations that shall not pass away, to a glory that is beyond
          the grave, as the only true riches, which the Gospel enjoins us
          to look after. "Seek ye first the kingdom of God and its
          righteousness, and all things else shall be added unto you." They
          will be added in God's own way, and he wishes to show us a better
          way, and, in order to deal with us as a kind father does with his
          children, he proposes to enlighten and instruct us, and he will
          impart to all of his people who will obey his voice the wisdom
          that is necessary to make them the richest people on the earth.
          This is the purpose of the Lord concerning Zion and his
          people--they are to possess this world's goods in abundance, not
          to be foolish with them and to destroy themselves and their
          children, but that they may preserve themselves and their
          children from falling into the vices and follies of great
          Babylon. He will rise up in their midst wise counselors to
          provide for the welfare of the whole.
          Will our trading and trafficking with the outside world cease? Of
          course not. As long as we are in the world, gathering Saints,
          preaching to the nations and building up Zion, Zion will be as a
          city set on a hill, which can not be hid. But the Lord proposes
          to preserve his people as far as possible from the influences of
          Babylon, and the transactions outside of the Order will be
          carried on through the Council of the Order; agents will be
          appointed by the voice of the Order, that what we bring from
          abroad may be bought from first hands and in the lowest market,
          that we may derive the benefits of it, instead of giving the
          profits to middlemen who are not of us; and what we have for sale
          we will sell in the best markets, and so enjoy the benefits of
          our labor, and not by interior competition and underbidding and
          underselling each other "scatter our ways to strangers," as we
          have done in times past. By this combined effort we shall be able
          to obtain the full market value of our products--the products of
          the farm, dairy, orchard, vineyard, the products of the woolen
          and cotton factory, of our shoe shops, and every mechanical
          appliance, to enable us to procure all labor-saving machinery, by
          our combined efforts, which men in their individual capacity are
          not able to do. We shall also be enabled to start new
          enterprises, and if they do not pay at first, they are bound to
          pay in the end, if they are necessary adjuncts to the prosperity
          of society. Our common fund will nourish these infant
          establishments, instead of individuals failing and breaking down
          in their vain efforts to build up new enterprises in a new
          country, as is often the case now. And if funds are needed from
          abroad to aid us in any general enterprise, we shall have the
          combined property and credit of the community as a guarantee to
          capitalists abroad, instead of individuals mortgaging their
          inheritances to procure money to carry on individual "wild-cat"
          speculations by which thousands are ruined. If they were
          operating in a United order and would submit their enterprises to
          the candid decision of that Order, many an enterprising man would
          be saved from foolish ventures and from ruin, and the wise and
          prudent would receive the necessary encouragement and financial
          aid, to make their undertakings a success for the benefit of the
          Will our merchants be worse off? No, our merchants, those who
          belong to this Order, will be just as well of as any in the rest
          of the Order. They will work where they are appointed, go on
          missions when called, or tan leather, or make hats or wooden
          shoes, if they are better adapted for that then for standing
          behind the counter; but if they are best suited to handle the
          products of the people and to carry on mutual exchanges among
          ourselves within the Order and with branch orders and with the
          outside world, we will appoint them to this labor and service,
          and hold them to an account of their stewardships, and the
          results of their transactions go into the common fund. Then they
          will not be stimulated to avarice, overreaching, lying and
          deception, to put what they call an honest, but what I call a
          very dishonest, penny into their pockets. We will endeavor thus,
          by a union of effort, to take away temptations from our midst to
          be dishonest, and let the dishonest share the fate of Ananias and
          Sapphira; but let the virtuous, upright and good be frank and
          outspoken, and give their sentiments, the witness of the word of
          truth in their hearts, for the good of the whole. Those who lack
          business capacity and experience will labor where they can be
          useful, that the ability of all may be available for the general
          These are the principles embraced in the instrument we heard read
          yesterday afternoon. As to these little personal objections that
          arise in the mind, we shall find that they exist only in the
          imaginations of our own hearts, arising from our ignorance, or a
          want of proper understanding, and partly from knowing each other
          too well, and comprehending each other's selfishness and
          weaknesses; because of this we are afraid to trust each other.
          The remedy for this is for every one to set himself to work to
          better his own condition, first establishing confidence in his
          own heart between himself and his God, and so deporting himself
          that he can command the respect and confidence of his brethren
          and sisters. Every man and every woman should set themselves to
          do this, and should enter into this Order with a firm
          determination to do this. Confidence will then soon be restored
          in our midst. Then every man and every woman will speak the
          honest sentiments of their hearts, and vote as they feel to do on
          every question, in the selection of officers and in the
          transaction of all business, and we will do whatever we do for
          the general good, according to the light that is in us. Such a
          people are bound to draw down from the heavens above the
          revelations of light and truth; and they will tap the clouds from
          above; every man will be a lightning rod to draw electricity from
          the clouds, in other words, the revelations of light and truth,
          into their own hearts and minds; they will possess a combined
          intelligence that will accomplish all they undertake in
          righteousness, and they will prevail before the Lord and before
          the world, and will command the respect and honor of the virtuous
          and good, at home and abroad. Those who refuse to engage in these
          enterprises, and to enter into the holy Order, will become the
          unpopular ones; and after we have once succeeded in this effort,
          we shall marvel and wonder that we did not enter into it before.
          We have been over forty years trying to learn these lessons, and
          all the time putting them off to a future day, waiting for our
          children to carry them out; but we shall marvel that we did not
          rise up and carry them out before. Thousands of Saints have been
          anxiously waiting and might, perhaps, have entered into this
          before now; but we have been continually throwing new clay into
          the machine, drawing new materials from abroad and raising new
          elements at home, and the elements brought from Babylon has
          brought Babylon with it, and our habits, customs, notions and
          individuality have been so prominent, that we could not see the
          benefits of mutual concessions to secure the mutual advantages
          and benefits of combined labor.
          I am aware that some capitalists will object to the idea of
          drawing only fifty per cent of what remains to their credit, it
          they should conclude to withdraw from the Order. Be this as it
          may, I can see no principle appertaining to the Gospel and to the
          building up of Zion, no principle of justice between man and man,
          which would permit the capitalist to-day to bring his capital
          into the Order and surrender it to the custody and care of stout
          hearts and strong arms to protect and preserve it and to increase
          it by the erection of factories and machinery and buildings and
          improvements, by the combined labor of the people, and then all
          the original capital, together with all the dividends, to be left
          at the disposal of the few capitalists originally composing the
          firm, and they be permitted, fifty years hence, to get up and
          walk off with the whole of it, leaving the great mass of the
          community, that have grown up from infancy, and preserved and
          insured and made it valuable, without anything but their daily
          wages, which they have eaten up as they passed along in
          supporting themselves and their growing families. I say I see no
          justice in allowing a few capitalists to draw the whole of their
          original deposits, together with the whole of the dividends and
          profits which have been made by the labor of the whole community,
          and I consider the provision which limits that withdrawal to half
          the original amount and half the dividends both wise and
          necessary. It is a question in my mind whether we should, in this
          Order, recognize the right of capital as above that of labor.
          This is a point which will bear criticism. But I will pass that
          over now.
          There are many objections which will arise in the minds of the
          people. The enemy will endeavor to throw every possible objection
          before our minds; but the more we scan it, and the more we seek
          to understand the principles of this order, as set before us in
          this instrument, the more we shall see the wisdom of God manifest
          therein, and the revelations of light and truth; the more this
          spirit goes abroad among the people, the more will their hearts
          be opened and prepared to receive it. I praise God that he has
          moved upon the heart of his servant Brigham to call this people
          to "right about face," that they may enter in at the strait gate,
          which may God grant we may be able to do in the name of Jesus.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / George
          Albert Smith, May 9, 1874
                          George Albert Smith, May 9, 1874
           Delivered at the Adjourned General Conference, held in the New
                   Salt Lake City, Sunday Afternoon, May 9, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          The principles which we have presented before us in the plan of
          salvation require of us an effort, for we are told that if we
          would have the blessings of exaltation, we must continue unto the
          end; and, in the Lectures on Faith, contained in the Book of
          Doctrine and Covenants, we are informed that if we would attain
          to the blessings of eternal life, we do it at the sacrifice of
          all things. The principles connected with this law call upon us
          to study our acts, designs and intentions in life.
          We came into the Church in different parts of the world, under
          the influence of the Spirit of the Almighty, and we gathered here
          by the aid of our brethren, or by our own efforts. We came to
          this land to learn the ways of the Lord and to walk in his paths;
          but we fail to understand or appreciate, altogether, the
          importance of a strict attention to our faith, and we become
          negligent and thoughtless, we are anxious to obtain wealth, and
          there arises among us a scramble, a kind of emulation one with
          the other, to obtain a greater amount of this world's goods than
          our neighbors. On this account many of us neglect to pay our
          Tithing, notwithstanding we are very anxious to receive the
          ordinances which are administered in a Temple. The real time to
          pay Tithing is when we have the means. When we receive money,
          merchandize or property, if we, in the first instance, go to
          Bishop Hunter and pay the tenth, making our record square with
          our faith, we can then use the remainder with a conscience void
          of offence, and we shall be blessed therein.
          Men may commence reasoning on this subject, and say, "We will
          figure all the year, and if at the end of it we find that we have
          saved anything, we will pay some Tithing; but if we do not save
          anything, we think the Bishops ought to pay us something." The
          spirit which prompts this feeling is entirely wrong, and those
          who come to this conclusion will, in the end, feel that if they
          lose a crop any year they ought to keep back their Tithing for
          several years after to make up that loss; but the fact is that a
          Tithing of what we receive from the Lord is due to him, and the
          residue we are entitled to use according to our best wisdom. The
          Prophet Malachi says--"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 the 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 shall not be room enough
          to receive it." Jesus said, he that gives a cup of cold water, in
          the name of a disciple, to one of these little ones, shall in no
          wise lose his reward; but in order to have the blessing of faith
          connected with the payment of Tithing, it is necessary to realize
          the importance of the commandment of God concerning it, for no
          man can attain to the faith necessary to salvation and eternal
          life without a sacrifice of all things. Now, if we prefer the
          things of this world and the pleasures of life to the things of
          the kingdom of God, we can have our own choice, but, so far as
          the comparison is concerned, "eye hath not seen, nor ear hear,
          nor yet hath it entered into the heart of man to conceive," the
          glory that is in store for those who keep the commandments of
          God, and live in accordance with his requirements. If we are to
          adopt the order of Zion now, it should become in our hearts a
          cherished desire, an earnest and determined purpose that, in all
          our actions, we will seek to love our neighbor as ourselves, that
          we will labor for the good of Zion, and put away selfishness,
          corruption and false principles.
          We have been instructed upon the necessity of economy, of living
          within ourselves, and of sustaining ourselves by the production
          of our own hands, yet we carelessly drift in another direction.
          How often we have been counseled to avoid getting into debt. When
          the Order of Enoch was organized in Kirtland the brethren were
          commanded, in the laws, not to get into debt to their enemies,
          and on a certain occasion it was commanded that we should make it
          our object to pay all our debts and liabilities, and that we
          should take measures to avoid the necessity of incurring more.
          One of the earliest things I can remember in my boyhood was an
          answer to the question--How to get rich? The answer was--"Live on
          half your income, and live a great while." We know how easy it is
          to live beyond our income, and to go on the credit system. Credit
          is a shadow, and debt is bondage, and I advise the brethren to
          realize that the balloon system of credit so general in our
          country and among ourselves is dangerous in its nature, and it is
          our duty, at the earliest time in our power, to close up all our
          liabilities, pay all our debts, and commence living as we go. I
          would rather walk the streets in a pair of wooden soles that I
          own and owe no man for, than in the finest morocco that some
          merchant was presenting a bill to me to pay for; I should, in my
          estimation, be more of a gentleman and more of an independent man
          with the wooden soles than with the fine boots, and I would
          advise our brethren, if necessity requires, to adopt the wooden
          sole leather in preference of being in debt.
          I visited the land where my ancestors lived in America, the
          graves of three of four generations of them, and I saw on the old
          farm, still occupied by some distant kinsmen, a shoe shop. Said
          I--"What are you doing here?" Said they--"Here is where we make
          our money, we work the farm in the summer, an in the winter we
          sit down here and earn three or four hundred dollars making
          shoes." "Where do you sell them?" "We make them for some houses
          in Salem and Lynn, that send them to California and the western
          Territories and sell them there." Now, brethren, think of this, a
          man can learn to make a shoe very quick if he has any ingenuity,
          and many of us spend our time in partial idleness through the
          winter, and we buy our shoes from manufacturers in the East, when
          we could just as well make them ourselves. Another bad feature
          connected with the imported shoes is, that when we put them on
          and walk into the streets, if the weather is wet, our feet are
          damp very quick, and I believe, as a matter of health as well as
          economy, that if, in wet weather, we were to adopt the wooden
          sole, it would save our children from much sickness, and a great
          many of us from rheumatism, sore throats and coughs, for much of
          the imported sole leather is spongy, and that holds the water and
          makes the feet damp and cold, producing sickness; and I am
          inclined to believe the statement made by the agricultural
          societies of Europe, that the use of wooden soles for shoes has a
          tendency to prevent a great many diseases which are incident to
          the use of leather. But if we are determined to wear leather, if
          we set ourselves to the work with a will, we can produce as fine
          leather of every variety, and as fine shoes and almost every
          other necessary within ourselves as we import, and a great deal
          better. But we must stop sending away our hides by the car load
          and must tan them ourselves. We have plenty of workmen who
          understand the business, and more can be trained, and we shall
          then not be compelled to ship car-loads of hair from the States
          for the use of our plasterers, in mixing the lime to finish our
          walls. This is true political economy.
          When I went to St. George last fall, I had a very good pair of
          boots, made of nice States sole leather, under my feet. The soil
          of St. George has a cold mineral in it, and although it may be
          dry and pleasant to walk about, a man wants a thick sole under
          his feet. I have bled a great many years from a rupture of the
          left lung which I got while preaching in the street of London in
          1840, and I have suffered a great deal from it, and the moment I
          would go out to walk on the streets of St. George, a shock,
          almost like electricity, would strike, through the spongy leather
          of my boot, from the hollow of my foot to this lung and cause
          pain there. I went and got an extra sole put on and a thickness
          of wax cloth put between the soles, and in this way I wore, all
          winter, a bottom just as stiff in the sole as a clog, and had no
          rheumatism and escaped cold. This set me to reflecting why I
          should pay two dollars for those soles, brought from the States,
          when a piece of cottonwood was just as good, and would answer my
          purpose just as well. Says one--"Why not wear overshoes?" Who
          wants the air kept from their feet by wearing a coat of
          india-rubber, which sweats them and makes them tender? They keep
          the feet dry, it is true, but for my own part it is not
          convenient to wear overshoes, and never has been, and on this
          account I have been compelled to go without. I also observe that
          some of those who do wear them, if they are not very careful, or
          if they should happen to forget and step out in the wet without
          them are almost sure to take cold, and have an attack of
          rheumatism, especially if they have delicate health. But with us
          throughout the Territory, I believe it has become almost a
          financial necessity that we economize our shoe bills. Think of
          these things and remember that it is within our power to
          manufacture just as good leather and as much of it, and as good
          and handsome shoes here as anywhere else, only let us take the
          time necessary to do it.
          The same thing may be said in relation to hats and clothing, and
          in fact about nine out of every ten articles that we import. One
          car-load of black walnut brought here from the States, and paid
          for as a lower class of freight, will probably make half a dozen
          car loads of furniture, and we have the mechanics who know how to
          make it up; and if we lack the necessary machinery we can procure
          it. If we please we can also bring lumber for every variety of
          furniture that we want, that our mountain lumber will not make.
          The same rule will also apply to wagons, carriages and
          agricultural implements. This course will be much better than
          wasting ourselves by being slaves to others, and paying out
          hundreds of thousands of dollars for furniture of a not very
          durable quality, and other articles that we can manufacture
          With me this is a very important item of religion, and it is time
          for us to cease importing shoes, clothing, wagons and so many
          other things, and that we manufacture them at home. This will
          reduce instead of increasing our expenses. When a man buys
          imported articles for the use of his family he helps to create
          difficulties for himself, for by and by the bills begin to come,
          and bonds and mortgages and all this sort of thing have to be
          met, and then he begins to worry and stew; but if he used
          home-made products the means is kept in the Territory, and he has
          a chance of working at some branch of trade which will in a short
          time bring it back to him again; whereas if it is sent out of the
          Territory it helps to impoverish all. Why not retrench? Says
          one--"I want to wear as good clothes and as fine shoes as anybody
          else, and I think I should be laughed at if I were to put clogs
          on." Well, if they did laugh they could not do a more foolish
          thing. Why not feel proud and independent of our own high
          character, that what we have is our own, and we are slaves to
          nobody? That is my feeling about it. by continually importing we
          run into debt and cast our ways to strangers, when it is
          perfectly in our power, if we will do it, to be independent,
          comfortable and happy, and owe no man anything.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / George
          Albert Smith, May 10, 1874
                          George Albert Smith, May 10, 1874
           Delivered at the Adjourned General Conference, held in the New
                   Salt Lake City, Sunday Afternoon, May 10, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          I rise on the present occasion, desiring the faith and prayers of
          the brethren and sisters that I may be able to address them by
          the majesty of the Spirit of the Almighty. When we come before
          the Lord to partake of the Sacrament, in memory of his death and
          suffering, we witness unto him that we do remember him, that we
          love one another, and that we are willing to endeavor to do all
          in our power to fulfill our several duties on the earth.
          One of the first and most responsible duties that rest upon us is
          the education, training and cultivation of the minds of our
          children. A child learns from us by our examples, the actions or
          examples of the parents being ever remembered by the children. A
          pious old deacon who may, by the way, have been a hypocrite, and
          had two half bushel measure, one to buy, and the other to sell
          with, may be very sure that his children will be dishonest. So it
          may be with our children if we do not act before them as becometh
          Saints; our precepts may be very good, but their effect will not
          be very powerful unless our examples correspond.
          We are more or less careless as to the observance of the
          Sabbath,; and, in consequence of the neglect of the Latter-day
          Saints in this respect, I feel anxious to stir them up to
          diligence in attending meetings on the Sabbath and on fast days,
          and in having their children do the same. I have visited a number
          of Sunday schools, and I have found that there was a good deal of
          interest manifested in them, and that much benefit to the rising
          generation is resulting from spending a couple of hours on the
          Sabbath in giving them religious or such other instruction as may
          be necessary to cultivate their minds; and, I wish the Bishops
          and presiding Elders, on their return to their several Branches,
          to stir up the minds of the brethren and sisters to the necessity
          of encouraging the Sunday schools, that they may be interesting
          and agreeable as well as instructive. Stir up the parents, too,
          that they may be alive and awake in getting the children ready
          for school in season, and that punctuality in attendance be
          encouraged. Endeavor also to induce parents and other elder
          members of families who can do so, to attend the Sunday schools,
          that there may be no lack of teachers, for one of the most useful
          callings for persons who can possibly or reasonable attend to it,
          is to teach the youth in Sunday schools.
          I also advise that the "Juvenile Instructor" be circulated
          extensively among our children. It is a work calculated to inform
          their minds on the principles of the Gospel; from its pages they
          may also gain a knowledge of the history of the Church, as well
          as a variety of other useful and entertaining information. It is
          a very useful publication, and the benefits it is capable of
          conferring upon our young people are numerous and great. While
          speaking on this subject, I will refer to other papers published
          by our brethren in these valleys--the "Deseret News," the "Salt
          Lake Herald," "Ogden Junction," "Provo Times," and the "Beaver"
          and "St. George Enterprise," all of which contain a good deal of
          information about our home affairs specially, and of events in
          the world generally. I hope that, in all the Stakes of Zion, the
          people will manifest a spirit and determination to support the
          papers which are published for their benefit. The "Deseret News,"
          daily, semi-weekly, and weekly, besides the general news of the
          world, also contains many of the sermons of President Young and
          others of the Church authorities, and it should be widely
          circulated in all the settlements of the Saints. The mails now
          run to all parts of the Territory, and though we can not boast a
          great deal about the punctuality of some of them, yet in nearly
          every settlement a mail comes along once in a while bringing the
          "Deseret News," and a man is pretty safe on the main
          thoroughfares in taking the weekly, and in many localities the
          semi-weekly or daily may be ventured upon.
          We must do something more in relation to printing. The Women's
          Relief Society are publishing a paper called the "Woman's
          Exponent," which is a very ably edited sheet, and one containing
          a great deal of information. I am surprised that all the
          gentlemen in the Territory do not take it. I invite all the
          Elders, Bishops and presiding officers in the Stakes of Zion, on
          their return home, setting the example themselves, to solicit all
          their brethren, and especially the sisters, to become subscribers
          to this little sheet, for I am sure that they will be interested
          in the instruction and information it contains. I will say that
          we expect in a short time, through the patronage of the brethren
          and sisters, that the ladies will be able to enlarge this paper,
          and to extend its influence far and wide.
          It has been my privilege to make visits to, and to become
          acquainted with the Ladies' Relief Societies in many of the
          settlements in the Territory, and I am convinced that great good
          results from the labors of these organizations; and I feel
          certain that unless the ladies take hold of any movement designed
          to forward the work of the Lord in the last days, its progress
          will be tardy. In all parts of the world, when nations are at
          war, unless the women take an interest in the matter, the war
          goes on very heavily. I am of the opinion that in the next war
          between France and Germany, the French will get the best of it.
          Not but what I have a great opinion of German skill, energy and
          pluck, but I am satisfied from traveling and personal
          observations, that the women of France are thoroughly aroused,
          and that in the next war between those two nations, the Prussians
          will have to fight the women of France, and then France will be
          likely to win.
          I say to our sisters of the Relief Societies, be encouraged, meet
          together and discuss all questions that are calculated to
          interest or benefit the community, as you have the ability; and
          as no man can be elected to office in this territory without the
          vote of the ladies, make yourselves thoroughly acquainted, not
          only with the politics of the country, but with every principle
          of local government that may be advanced, and then, whatever is
          calculated to benefit the people in their private or domestic
          circles, you will be enabled to vote intelligently, and to carry
          it through without difficulty.
          We spend a great deal of money in following vain fashions, and in
          purchasing a great many articles that are useless. These
          societies, if they choose, can make their own fashions, and they
          can make them according to wisdom, and so as to promote health; a
          great many of the Fashions of the world are calculated to destroy
          health. A hundred questions connected with domestic
          economy--housekeeping, cooking, making bread and kindred
          subjects, that are of importance to the stomach, health and
          longevity of every man and woman in the Territory may be properly
          discussed in these Relief Societies, and useful information
          disseminated. A great many of the women in these valleys have not
          had good opportunities to become acquainted with the art of
          cooking, and that is an art which has something to do with every
          person's happiness. The example of the ladies, and the influence
          which they exercise, have a tendency, above all things else, to
          maintain, create, and preserve good morals. Men are apt to behave
          themselves in the society of woman, and if women act wisely and
          prudently in guiding and controlling the course and conduct of
          each there, they will be able, to a great extent, to guide,
          control, and regulate the morals and the conduct of men. We
          think, however, that the policy of the Christian world, in
          throwing the responsibility, so far as morality is concerned,
          entirely upon the heads of women, is a blunder; the men should be
          held responsible for heir own acts, and when they are guilty of
          that which is corrupt, low, or degrading, they should be looked
          upon as transgressors and cast aside until, by repentance and
          uprightness, they prove that they are worthy of confidence.
          I have been, from the commencement of the formation of this
          Territory, more or less identified with its politics. I was a
          member of the Legislature of Deseret, before Utah Territory was
          organized, and while it was a provisional government. I was a
          member of the first Legislature of the Territory, and served
          twenty years. During that period I was brought in contact with
          five different sets of federal officers, and I had a pretty good
          knowledge of some forty-eight or forty-nine judges. They were men
          sent here, from different parts of the country, to administer the
          law. They had a general knowledge of politics, and of the law as
          administered in their own immediate localities. But few of them
          were of high minds and noble sentiments, and many of them were
          incapable of occupying, with honor, the high positions they were
          selected to fill. Our people here in these mountains did not take
          much pains to acquaint themselves with the politics of the
          country. We had been five times robbed of all we possessed. Our
          leaders had been murdered and we had been expatriated and driven
          from the United States into these valleys, then a portion of the
          republic of Mexico, but afterwards acquired by the United States.
          We were a great way from any other settlement. It took a month,
          generally, to get a mail, and for about twelve years we had about
          seven mails a year; and in the latter part of October or about
          the first of November, portions of the mails for the winter
          before would be brought in here with ox teams. This was our
          condition in early days. We did not pay a great deal of attention
          to politics; we were not very much divided and hence we cared
          very little about our elections, and did not pay much attention
          to them; and a good many who came from abroad were so careless
          that they did not obtain their naturalization papers, although,
          from time to time, we advised them to attend to this matter; and
          I now call upon the Bishops and presiding Elders, when they
          return home, to recommend the foreign brethren who are not
          naturalized to see to this, and in all localities or districts
          which are favored with judges who have more respect for the law
          than for religious bigotry, let the brethren take all pains to
          get naturalized, that they may have the benefits of the laws of
          our country, and be permitted to perform any duty required
          thereby, and be faithful to do so in all cases; and never let an
          election go by, or any other occasion in which it is important
          for us to take part, without paying attention to it. This advice
          is for the ladies as well as for the gentlemen, for every lady of
          twenty-one years of age, who is a citizen of the United States,
          or whose husband or father is a citizen of the United States, has
          a right, under the laws of Utah to vote; and no one need hope to
          hold office in Utah if the ladies say no.
          I wish to call your attention to the Saint George Temple. We have
          got the foundation of that Temple up to the water table, about
          eighteen feet from the ground, and a very nice foundations it is.
          The building is about one hundred and forty-one feet long and
          about ninety-three feet wide, and when the walls are up they will
          be about ninety feet high. We have a very fine draught and
          design. The building is in a nice locality and in a very fine
          climate, where, all winter, and in fact the whole year, there is
          almost perpetual spring and summer weather; and when the Temple
          is completed there will be an opportunity to go there and spend
          the winter and attend to religious ordinances or enjoy
          yourselves; and if you want to go there through the summer you
          can eat as delicious fruits as ever grew out of the earth in any
          county I believe. As far as I have traveled I have never seen
          anything in the way of fruit that I though was superior to that
          which is produced in St. George. We invite a hundred and fifty of
          the brethren to volunteer to go down there this summer to put up
          this building, and to find themselves while they are doing it. We
          shall call upon the Bishops, presiding Elders, teachers and
          others from the various stakes of Zion to take this matter in
          hand when they reach home, and find brethren, if they can, who
          are willing to go and do this work, so that by Christmas the
          building may be ready for the roof, that we may, in a very short
          time, have the font dedicated and the ordinances of the holy
          Priesthood performed in that place. We appeal to our brethren and
          sisters in behalf of this St. George Temple. Our brethren in that
          vicinity are doing all they can to push forward the work, but
          five or six months' help from a hundred or a hundred and fifty
          men is very desirable.
          I will invite all the brethren and sisters from the settlements
          who may visit Salt Lake City this summer to step on to the Temple
          Block and see what we are doing for the Temple here. See the
          beautiful stones that have been quarried in the Cottonwood and
          brought here, every one cut and numbered for its place. And it is
          the duty of the brethren to call upon the Lord for his blessing
          upon the workmen. I also called upon the Bishops and teachers in
          all the stakes of Zion, to be on hand and to see that, in the
          building of this Temple, in the centre stake of Zion in the
          mountains, we are not under the necessity of involving ourselves
          in disagreeable liabilities in order to move the work forward.
          For the last year we have had from sixty to ninety men engaged in
          cutting stone on this block, and a number of other mechanics to
          supply them with tools and other necessaries; last summer we had
          a considerable force of men laying these stones on the walls. In
          Little Cottonwood canyon we have continually at work a force of
          from twenty-five to sixty men quarrying granite, and every day,
          Sundays excepted, two or three car loads of this granite, from
          ten to twelve tons each load, are brought from the quarry to the
          Temple Block. It is really a delightful thing, to a person who
          has never seen it, to go on to the block and see the skillful
          manner in which our architects and workmen pick up these big
          stones and pass them all over the building, and lay them in their
          place to a hair's breadth. It shows what can be done with a
          little management, skill and ingenuity.
          We earnestly appeal to all Saints, Tithe payers, to donate
          liberally and punctually for the prosecution of this work. While
          we employ so many skilled mechanics and other laborers, their
          families constantly require a supply of not only home products,
          but of money, and merchandize which costs money, and unless the
          brethren furnish the means to supply these necessities, we shall
          be obliged to dismiss many of the workmen. We have already
          incurred liabilities which press upon us, and we call upon the
          brethren to supply the means necessary to enable us to maintain
          our credit and continue the work.
          It is the design of the teachers and superintendents of Sunday
          schools, to get up a children's musical jubilee. Some songs have
          been composed, and they are being learned and practiced, and they
          calculate to assemble some eight or ten thousand children in this
          building and have a general time of grand musical song. The
          enterprise is a very laudable one. We do not know when the
          festival will take place, but brother Goddard, the Assistant
          Superintendent, and a number of others who are interested in
          Sunday schools are doing all they can, and we ask the
          co-operation of the Bishops, presidents, teachers and brethren
          and sisters in the several Stakes of Zion to take a part in it,
          and make it one of the finest festivals of the kind ever held.
          The progress of our Sabbath schools will be encouraged, and the
          elevating tendency of music may be appreciated by all who
          participate therein. We ask our brethren to act wisely and
          prudently in carrying this matter out, that it may be done in
          such a manner as shall be satisfactory; and if a little means is
          necessary on the part of parents or friends let it not be
          wanting. In the course of my year's travel I visited schools in
          various parts of the world, but I found none superior to our own.
          I think that ours compare favorably with them, and in many
          respects they are superior to most that I visited, and I hope
          that a spirit to encourage them will be developed.
          I wish to see the common school system encouraged as far as
          possible. The brethren in many settlements are forming Branches
          of the United Order, and as soon as they get fairly to work they
          will be able to introduce improved systems of teaching. I notice,
          in visiting our settlements, more or less carelessness in
          relation to schools. Very little pains will make a school-room
          quite comfortable, and I wish to stir up parents to the
          importance of visiting the schools and seeing what their children
          are doing, and what the teachers are doing, find out whether the
          little fellows are sitting on comfortable seats; whether they put
          a tall boy on a low seat, or a boy with short legs on a high
          seat, making him humpbacked. The happiness and prosperity of the
          whole life of a child may be a good deal impaired while attending
          school through a blockhead of a teacher not knowing enough to get
          a saw and sawing the legs of the seats his pupils sit upon, so as
          to make them comfortable. It is the duty of the people to look
          after the comfort of their children while at school, and also to
          procure proper books for them; and to see that the schools are
          provided with fuel, that in the cold weather they may be warm and
          comfortable. In a new country I know there are a good many
          disadvantages to contend with, but I feel anxious that nothing,
          within our power to promote the welfare of our children, should
          be neglected. There is no need, however, to send to the States to
          buy school benches. There is plenty of timber in these mountains,
          and a few days' work properly applied will seat any school room
          perfectly comfortable, for we can make just as good benches in
          this country as anywhere else, it is only a question of time and
          attention. Of course if we can do not better, send and buy; but
          in order that we may have means to buy what we are forced to buy,
          it is necessary that we exercise prudence and economy and supply
          our own wants as far as possible. The wholesale Co-operative
          Store here imports probably five million dollars' worth of goods
          per annum. One half of these goods could be produced at home with
          our own labor; it is only a question of time and management to do
          it. If we were to produce one-half of these goods we should be in
          easy circumstances all the time, and should have plenty to buy
          everything we wanted to buy. We could also produce many things to
          sell; but by purchasing, in such immense quantities, articles
          that we can make ourselves, we impoverish ourselves all the time,
          hence we advise our brethren and sisters, in all their councils,
          meetings, orders, associations, and relief and retrenchment
          societies, to take into account every questions where economy can
          be exercised and prudence observed, where we can save a dollar
          instead of spending one let us do it, for by taking this course
          we can lay a foundation for permanent comfort at home, and this
          will prevent us from being dependent upon abroad. This is a part
          of my religion and this I shall continue to preach.
          In relation to this United Order, I will say to those who are
          entering it, if questions arise that trouble you and that you
          wish to have explained; or if anything should arise upon which
          you wish for advice or counsel, if you will write your queries
          and send them along here to the President's office, we will
          answer them, and show you that the whole affair can be carried
          out with perfect ease. Only let this people act with one heart
          and one mind, as the Nephites did, and success is certain; and in
          a short time a great many will wonder, as some in the southern
          settlements have already expressed it, "Why did we not unite
          before?" I feel satisfied that the spirit which has been
          manifested here and elsewhere on this subject, is the same spirit
          which bore testimony to you, when you went down into the waters
          of baptism, that this was the work of God; and when we have this
          spirit in our hearts we can move forward with joy and
          thanksgiving, and can accomplish that which is required of us.
          I wish to return my thanks to our musicians--those who direct and
          all who have participated in the musical exercises of our
          Conference. I have enjoyed them. I have visited many parts of the
          world, and have been to see their organs and to hear their music;
          but I have heard none with which I am so well pleased as with our
          own. There is something sweet and lovely here, and I feel that
          the Spirit of the Lord has warmed the hearts and inspired the
          souls of those who have made melody for us during the Conference.
          I pray that God may bless them, that he may enlighten their
          minds, enliven their souls, and make their songs songs of glory
          for ever. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / George
          Albert Smith, May 24, 1874
                          George Albert Smith, May 24, 1874
                  Delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                           Sunday Afternoon, May 24, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          About two days since the daily papers announced the arrival, in
          this city, of General A. W. Doniphan, of Liberty, Clay County,
          Missouri. This circumstance brought to my mind incidents
          thirty-six years passed by, to which I shall briefly refer on the
          present occasion. There are few men who names have been
          identified with the history of our Church, with more pleasant
          feelings to its members, than General Doniphan. During a long
          career of persecution, abuse and oppression characters
          occasionally present themselves like stars of the first magnitude
          in defence of right, who are willing, notwithstanding the
          unpopularity that may attach to it, to stand up and protest
          against mob violence, murder, abuse, or the destruction of
          property and constitutional rights, even if the parties who are
          being thus abused, robbed, murdered or trampled under foot have
          the unpopular name of "Mormons." The incident of General Doniphan
          exercising his influence by which means he prevented the murder
          of Joseph and Hyrum Smith and some other Elders, who had had a
          mock trial by court-martial, in the State of Missouri, some
          thirty-six years ago, is familiar to the minds of all the
          Latter-day Saints who are acquainted with the history of that
          period, and there is one man in the Territory who was present on
          the occasion, that is Timothy B. Foote, of Nephi, who witnessed
          the court-marital. It was represented to Joseph Smith, by a man
          known among our people as Colonel Hinkle, that Major General
          Lucas and certain other parties wished to have an interview with
          him. In the vicinity of the town of Far West there was at that
          time a large body of armed men, under the orders of the Governor
          of Missouri, but temporarily under the command of General Lucas,
          of Jackson County, Mo., who was the ranking officer. It is
          understood by us that Hinkle had deceived Joseph Smith and the
          brethren with the idea that the interview was to be of a peaceful
          and consultory character; but when they came, as they supposed,
          to hold the interview, they were taken prisoners, tried by a
          court-marital and sentenced to be shot; the execution, however
          was prevented by the protest of General Doniphan, who, at that
          time, was commander of a brigade, composed, I believe, of the
          militia of the County of Clay, and who declared that the
          execution of that sentence would be coldblooded murder.
          It was not long after this that General Clark, who had been
          appointed by the Governor to this command, arrived and took
          command of this militia. General Atchison was the ranking
          officer, being the general of a division on the north side of the
          river, commanding a division containing, I think, six counties,
          but he was superseded by the appointment of Clark. If I remember
          right there were as many as thirteen thousand men ordered out,
          and there were probably five or six thousand collected together
          on the ground, their object being to expel the Latter-day Saints
          from the State of Missouri.
          The number of Latter-day Saints at that period is not accurately
          known, but there were, I suppose in the neighborhood of ten or
          twelve thousand. The settlements had been rapidly formed. They
          had occupied the County of Caldwell when there were only seven
          families in it. A party of Elders visited Caldwell County to look
          for a location. On their arrival they fell in with these seven,
          families, who were living in log cabins and had made very little
          improvements. They said the country was a worthless, naked
          prairie, there was very little timber in it, and, their business
          being bee-hunting, they had hunted all the bees out of the woods,
          and they wanted to go somewhere else, as they learned there was
          better-hunting and more honey to be obtained up Grand River; and
          within an hour after the arrival of the first of these Elders,
          every one of the seven men had sold their places and received
          their pay, congratulating themselves on their good fortune in
          leaving a country where the taking of wild honey had ceased to be
          a paying business, and there was not a family, other than the
          Latter-day Saints, residing in the county. A good many of our
          people were settled in Ray County, a few in Clay, and some in
          Livingstone, Davies, Clinton and Carroll. I understand that three
          hundred and eighteen thousand dollars had been paid to the United
          States for lands in the State of Missouri, the titles of which
          were held by Latter-day Saints. The Order of Governor Boggs
          exterminated these people from the State. To be sure they owned
          their lands, and they were industrious and law-abiding. They were
          increasing rapidly and making vast improvements. The city of Far
          West had several hundred houses, and other towns and villages
          were springing up. United firms were being organized, which were
          putting into cultivation very extensive tracts of land in
          addition to the large amount already brought under improvement.
          In consequence of the influence exerted by General Doniphan,
          General Lucas hesitated to execute the sentence of his
          court-martial, and he delivered Joseph Smith and his associates
          into the charge of General Moses Wilson, who was instructed to
          take them to Jackson County and there put them to death. I heard
          General Wilson, some years after, speaking of this circumstance.
          He was telling some gentlemen about having Joseph Smith a
          prisoner in chains in his possession, and said he--"He was a very
          remarkable man. I carried him into my house, a prisoner in chains
          and in less than two hours my wife loved him better than she did
          me." At any rate Mrs. Wilson became deeply interested in
          preserving the life of Joseph Smith and the other prisoners, and
          this interest on her part, which probably arose from a spirit of
          humanity, did not end with that circumstance, for, a number of
          years afterwards, after the family had moved to Texas, General
          Wilson became interested in raising a mob to do violence to some
          of the Latter-day Saint Elders who were going to preach in the
          neighborhood, and this coming to the ears of Mrs. Wilson,
          although then an aged lady, she mounted her horse and rode thirty
          miles to give the Elders the information. Year before last when I
          was in California, attending the State Fair, I met with a son of
          Mr. Wilson: he was president of an agricultural society, and was
          attending the fair, and I named this circumstance to him. He told
          me that his mother deeply deprecated the difficulties with the
          Mormons, and did all she could to prevent them.
          You can readily see from what I have said that our community, at
          that time, was very handsomely situated. The poorest man in it,
          apparently, owned his forty acres of land, while some of the
          richer had several sections. Farms had been opened, and
          prosperity seemed to smile upon the people everywhere. Mills were
          built, machinery was being constructed, and everything seemed to
          be going on that could be desired to make a community prosperous,
          wealthy and happy, when suddenly, in consequence of the
          exterminating order issued by Lilburn W. Boggs, and executed by
          General Clark, and those under his command, the people were
          driven from the State. If we would renounce our faith we could
          have the privilege of remaining, but we were told pointedly that
          we must hold no prayer meetings, no prayer circles, no
          conferences, and that we must have neither Bishops nor
          Presidents, and that if we indulged in any of these forbidden
          luxuries the citizens would be upon us and destroy us. A very few
          accepted the conditions and remained, and I believe that, to this
          day, one or two families occupy their inheritances who then
          renounced their faith.
          This people landed in Illinois destitute. Most of their animals
          had been plundered from them during the difficulties, and, to use
          a comparative expressions, they arrived in that State almost
          naked and barefoot. They were, however, a very industrious
          people, and they immediately went to work; anywhere and
          everywhere that they could find anything to do their hands laid
          hold upon it, and prosperity very soon began to smile upon them.
          Joseph Smith was kept in prison during the winter, but in the
          spring he and several of his fellow prisoners, among them Bishop
          Alexander McRae of the 11th Ward, escaped and made their way to
          the State of Illinois.
          Our people had a very singular idea of justice and right; they
          supposed, having paid their money to the United States for their
          lands, having actually purchased and received titles for them,
          that it was the business of the United States to protect them
          thereon; having little acquaintance with law they entertained the
          somewhat wild idea that that was no more than justice on the part
          of the Government. Of course, the government could only be
          expected to protect them against any adverse titles that might
          arise; but so far as protecting them from mobs or from illegal
          violence from the State in which they lived, from oppression from
          those in authority, or from marauders who might burn their
          houses, or murder them and ravish their wives this was not part
          of the business of the United States; but in their lack of
          knowledge on these subjects they fancied that the United States
          should protect them on the lands, hence Joseph Smith and several
          of his brethren went directly to Washington, carrying the
          applications of some ten thousand persons, and asked the
          Government to protect them in the possession of their lands and
          in their rights, and to restore them to their homes. They had an
          interview on the subject with Mr. Van Buren, at that time
          President of the United States, and the answer that he gave has
          become almost a household word. Said he--"Gentlemen, your cause
          is just, but we can do nothing for you." Joseph accordingly
          returned to his friends in the western border of Illinois, and
          they commenced purchasing lands in the vicinity of Nauvoo, and
          they laid out and built a city and remained there.
          This occurred in the Spring of 1839, and Joseph remained there
          until the Summer of 1844, during which time he had several very
          grievous law-suits, which arose out of attempts on the part of
          the authorities of Missouri to carry him back to that State. He
          was arrested several times, and had one trial, and was discharged
          on habeas corpus in the circuit court, before Judge Stephen A.
          Douglas; one trial, and discharged on habeas corpus before Judge
          Pope, United States judge in the district of Illinois; and one
          trial before the municipal court of Nauvoo. These several trials
          cost a great deal of money and a great deal of time, and were a
          very discouraging feature in the progress of the settlements in
          that vicinity, though the industry and enterprise of the people
          were such that they purchased a large portion of the lands in the
          county and in adjoining counties. They laid out and built the
          city of Nauvoo, containing some twelve thousand inhabitants, and
          they were building a Temple and making other improvements, when
          Joseph Smith and his brother Hyrum were murdered, which took
          place on the twenty-seventh of June, 1844.
          I will say in relation to the progress of the work, that
          missionaries, among them the Twelve Apostles, had been sent
          abroad to preach, and a great many people had received the
          Gospel. The Apostles took their departure directly from the
          re-commencing of the foundation of the Temple in the city of Far
          West, on the 26th of April, 1839. They went on a mission to
          Europe for about two years, baptizing some seven thousand
          persons, and laying a foundation for the gathering from the old
          world, which has continued up to the present time. The
          circumstances connected with the death of Joseph and Hyrum Smith
          were such as to impress upon their enemies even, the disgrace
          inflicted upon the State by their murder, and upon the world the
          importance of their mission. The governor of the State pledged
          himself, when they gave themselves up, that they should be
          protected and have a fair trial, but he placed them in the hands
          of men, who, he was assured by many, were their enemies, and who
          would murder them if they had the power. Joseph Smith had been
          brought before legal tribunals forty-seven times, and had in
          every instance been acquitted. Everything in the shape of a
          vexatious law suit that could be trumped up against him had been,
          and in this instance he was arrested on the affidavit of a man,
          whose word would not have been taken at a saloon in Carthage for
          a glass of grog, who swore that he was guilty of treason, and he
          was thrown into prison, and murdered while being detained waiting
          for an examination. The governor, in a communication to the
          Elders in Nauvoo, said that the people felt that it was very
          wrong that he should be murdered in that way, but the great mass
          of them was very glad that he was dead; and I have reason to
          believe that this feeling was caused by religious prejudice,
          which arose from the fact that he came preaching what was
          considered a new doctrine, which attacked all the hireling
          priests and religious crafts, and offered free, to all people, a
          religion, plain and simple and in accordance with the Bible, and
          which, if accepted, would have a tendency to throw a large
          portion of the hireling clergy of the age out of employment, or
          compel them to do as the Apostles did in the days of
          Jesus--preach the Gospel without purse and scrip. Vexatious
          law-suits, mob violence, tar and feathers, and finally, bloodshed
          were successively adopted in hopes of stopping this religion, and
          it was believed by those who regarded "Mormonism" as a wild
          theory, that the death of Joseph would scatter the people and
          destroy their faith in the work. They did not realize that he had
          laid the foundation of the living, truthful organization, which
          would be likely to increase the faster the more it was
          persecuted. But so it was, for the people continued to gather,
          and the public buildings--Temple and Nauvoo House--were being
          pushed forward more rapidly then ever, and when this was
          ascertained, there was an organization formed which expelled the
          people from the State.
          The authorities of the Church at Nauvoo being aware of this
          combination, petitions were sent to the government of the United
          States, and also to the governor of very State in the Union,
          asking each one to give us an asylum in his State. The governor
          of Arkansas gave us a respectful answer, all the rest treated our
          petition with silent contempt.
          In September, 1845, the Mob commenced burning houses, and they
          continued burning in different parts of the settlements, mostly
          in Hancock County, until they burned one hundred and seventy-five
          houses. The governor and authorities of the State were notified,
          and finally the sheriff of the County took a posse, mostly
          Latter-day Saints, and stopped the house-burning. The instant
          this was done the people of the nine adjoining counties rose up
          and said--"You 'Mormons' must leave the county or you 'Mormons'
          must die." They then made an agreement that we should have time
          to move away and dispose of our property, and that vexatious
          law-suits and mob violence should cease. This we kept most
          faithfully, but so far as they were concerned the agreement was
          never observed, mob violence continued, house burnings and
          murders occurred occasionally, vexatious law-suits were renewed;
          and before the remnant of the people were permitted to get out of
          the county they were surrounded by armed mobs, as many as
          eighteen hundred in a single body, and cannonaded out of their
          The people thus driven commenced a journey to seek the home where
          we now reside. The white settlements extended sixty or seventy
          miles west of the Missouri River, Keosauqua was the most western
          one. From that place we made the roads, and bridged the streams,
          some thirty in number, across Iowa, to Council Bluffs, arriving
          there in June, 1846. The people who started on this journey
          started under the most forlorn circumstances. They left their
          houses, lands, crops, and everything they had if they could get a
          yoke of cattle, wagons without iron tires, carts, or anything of
          which they could make an outfit, and commenced a journey to hunt
          a home somewhere where so-called Christians would not be able to
          deprive them of the right to worship God according to the
          dictates of their consciences, a right which is actually more
          dear than life itself.
          I think between thirteen and fourteen hundred miles of road were
          made, though we occasionally followed trappers' trails, and on
          the 24th of July, 1847. President Young led the pioneer
          party--numbering one hundred and forty three men--on to this
          ground, then a portion of Mexican Territory and one of the most
          desolate, barren looking spots in the world, and dedicated it to
          the Most High, that we might once more find an asylum where
          liberty could be enjoyed. We should most probably have reached
          this place before we did, but the United States, the year before,
          invited our camps to send five hundred men to aid them in the war
          with Mexico, which they did, and they were mustered into service
          on the 16th of July, 1846, and made the route through from New
          Mexico to the Pacific coast.
          It is a remarkable fact in history, that while these five hundred
          Latter-day Saints, mustered into service at Council Bluffs, were
          bearing the American flag across the desert, from New Mexico to
          the Pacific Coast, a march of infantry characterized by General
          Cook as unparalleled in the military annals, the remnant of their
          families in Nauvoo were surrounded by eighteen hundred armed men
          and cannonaded, and driven across the river into the wilderness,
          without shelter, food or protection, in consequence of which very
          many of them lost their lives.
          Our friends pass through here and they say--"What a beautiful
          city you have got! What beautiful shade trees! What magnificent
          fruit trees, what grand orchards and wheat fields! What a
          splendid place you have got!" When the pioneers came here there
          was nothing of the kind, and a more dry and barren spot of ground
          then this was then could hardly be found. Still the little
          streams were running from the mountains to the Lake. We knew
          nothing, then, about irrigation, but the streams were soon
          diverted from their course, to irrigate the soil. For the first
          three years we had but little to eat. We brought what provisions
          we could with us, and we eked them out as well as we could by
          hunting over the hills for wild segoes and thistle roots. There
          was very little game in the mountains, and but few fish in the
          streams, and hence we had but a short allowance of food, and for
          three years after our arrival there was scarcely a family which
          dared to eat a full meal. This was the condition in which this
          settlement was commenced. There was not intercourse except with
          Western Missouri, and it was ten hundred and thirty-four miles to
          the Missouri river, if we struck it at the mouth of the Platte,
          where Omaha is now; and our supplies, which were generally
          brought by way of that place, were all purchased in Western
          In 1850 a sufficient crop was raised here to supply the
          inhabitants with food, but previous to that time we had divided
          our scanty supplies with hundreds and thousands of emigrants, who
          drifted in here in a state of starvation while on their way to
          California, for the discovery of the gold mines there had set the
          world almost crazy. Many people started on the Plains without
          knowing how to outfit or what to do to preserve their supplies,
          and by the time they reached here their outfits would be
          completely exhausted. We saved the lives of thousands who arrived
          here in that condition, many of them our bitter enemies, and we
          aided them on their way in the best possible manner that we
          There are several incidents which occurred here in early times
          which, to us, were miraculous. The first year after our arrival
          the crickets in immense numbers came down from the mountains and
          destroyed much of the crops. The people undertook to destroy
          them, and after having done everything they could to accomplish
          this object, they gave it up for a bad job; then the gulls came
          in immense numbers from the lakes and devoured the crickets,
          until they were all destroyed, and thus, by the direct and
          miraculous intervention of Providence, the colony was saved from
          While crossing the Plains we had to form in companies of
          sufficient size to protect ourselves against the Indians, there
          being from fifty to a hundred men in each company. In these
          companies existed our religious organization, and we also had a
          civil organization, by which all the difficulties that arose in
          the companies were settled; and then a militia organization,
          composed of able-bodied men, whose duty it was to guard the camps
          from attack by Indians, and from accidents. We had our meetings
          every Sabbath, at which the Sacrament was administered; we had
          days also set apart for washing, and occasionally we had a dance,
          and our travels were so regulated that the cultivation, enjoyment
          and associations of society were experienced almost as much as
          when living together in a settled and well regulated community.
               When we started on our journey we knew very little about
          Indians, but we exercised towards them such a spirit of justice,
          and such vigilant watchfulness, that we lost very little, and
          suffered very little on account of difficulties with them during
          the many years that we were crossing these plains.
          Before we left Nauvoo we had covenanted, within the walls of our
          Temple, that we would, with one heart and one mind, abide by each
          other, and aid one another to escape from the oppressions with
          which we were surrounded, to the extent of our influence and
          property, and just as soon as the brethren were able they formed
          a perpetual emigration fund in Salt Lake City, and in 1849 Bishop
          Hunter, with five thousand dollars in gold, was sent back with
          instructions to use that and what other means he could gather in
          helping those to come here who were not able to come before; and
          from year to year this work has continued, being a grand system
          of brotherly love and united co-operation. In a few years after
          reaching here we sent a hundred teams back to the frontiers, each
          team being a wagon and four yoke of oxen or six mules or horses;
          and as we increased in strength, we sent annually two hundred,
          three hundred, four hundred, five hundred, and finally six
          hundred, to bring home those who wished to settle in these
          valleys; and even at the present time, our system of emigration
          has been extended across the sea, to gather all who wish to
          gather with the Saints. There are many thousands of people in
          these valleys who, had it not been for the organization of the
          Latter-day Saints and the kind and fatherly care of President
          Brigham Young, would never have owned a foot of land, or any
          other property, but they would have been dependent all their
          lives upon the will of a master for a very precarious
          Our plan of settlement here was entirely different from that we
          had adopted in any other country in which we had ever lived. The
          first thing, in locating a town, was to build a dam and make a
          water ditch; the next thing to build a school house, and these
          school houses generally answered the purpose of meeting houses.
          You may pass through all the settlements, from north to south,
          and you will find the history of them to be just about the
          same--the dam, the water ditch, then the school house and the
          meeting house. Crops were put in, trees were planted, cabins were
          build, mills were erected, fields were enclosed, and improvements
          were made step by step. This Territory is so thoroughly a desert
          that unless men irrigate their land by artificial means they
          would raise comparatively nothing. The settlements at the present
          time stretch some five or six hundred miles extending into
          Arizona on the south and into Idaho on the north.
          We have had some difficulty with the Indians, resulting
          principally from the interference of outsiders. Those of you who
          have read the history of John C. Fremont's journey through the
          Western Arizona, may remember that he gives an account of some of
          his party killing several of the native Piute Indians. From that
          time the war seems to have commenced between the Indians and the
          whites. Some of you may also remember the declaration, in regard
          to the Indians, made by Mr. Calhoun, one of the early governors
          of New Mexico. He informed the government that the true policy in
          regard to the Digger and Piute tribes, in the western part of the
          Territory, which then embraced Arizona and portions of Utah, was
          to exterminate them, that it was utterly useless ever to attempt
          to civilize them, or to do anything else but exterminate them.
          This was the policy adopted by a great many travelers who passed
          through, and when they saw an Indian, the feeling was to shoot
          him. This was especially the case in the district of country now
          comprised in the southern portions of this Territory and the
          western part of Arizona.
          When we came into the country our motive was to promote peace
          with the Indians, to deal justly with them and to act towards
          them as though they were human beings, and so long as we were
          permitted to carry out our own policy with them we were enabled
          to maintain peace, and there were but few instances in which
          difficulties occurred. A band of men, rowdies, from Western
          Missouri, on the way to the mines, shot seem Snake squaws and
          took their horses, up here on the Malad. This aroused the spirit
          of vengeance in the Indians, and they fell upon and killed the
          first whites they found, and they happened to be "Mormons" who
          were engaged in building a mill on the northern frontier, just
          above Ogden. This difficulty, of course, had to be arranged, and
          a good many circumstances of this kind, at various times, have
          made it difficult to get along without having a muss with the
          Again, we had people among us who were reckless in their
          feelings, and who were not willing always to be controlled and to
          act wisely and prudently. All these things considered, when we
          realize that we always had four frontiers, and that we were about
          a thousand miles from any white settlement in any direction, that
          the Indians were on every side of us, and many of them very wild
          and savage, it is perfectly wonderful that we have had as little
          difficulty with them as we have. But the United States, in
          sending agents here, have frequently been not altogether
          fortunate in their selection, and in some instances have not sent
          very good men. Some who have been sent have been very good men,
          but they were totally ignorant of the business of dealing with,
          controlling or promoting peace with the Indians. This, of course,
          has been more or less detrimental to the settlements, and it has
          cost them a great deal to supply the natives with food and to aid
          them in getting along, for it is much cheaper to feed the Indians
          than to fight them. But the general feeling among the Indians is,
          that as far as the "Mormons" are concerned, they desire to deal
          with them in a spirit of justice and friendship. There is now
          little difficulty except from distant Indians, and we sometimes
          think that white men, perhaps, have employed Indians to plunder
          ranches and drive off cattle four or five hundred miles and sell
          them. Some instances of this kind may have occurred, but we have
          got along wonderfully well.
          The people here have shown a vast amount of enterprise in the
          construction of the roads through the Territory. Strangers who
          come here run down to this city, go down to Provo and up to
          Logan, and to various other places on the little branches of our
          railroad system; but if they were to travel through these
          mountains and extend their investigations into the valleys, which
          are well worthy the attention of any traveler for their beauty,
          they would find that in many places they are so rugged that it is
          almost a wonder there were ever men enough in the country to make
          the roads. Then the telegraph wires have been extended some
          twelve hundred miles through a number of settlements, north and
          south; these wires have sometimes been used to prevent the
          plunder of the ranches by the Indians. From year to year we are
          extending our railroad system. We have had no encouragement from
          the General Government in relation to railroads; we have never
          been permitted even to have the right of way, by act of Congress,
          over a foot of ground, until we have occupied it with a railroad
          for a year or two, and sometimes not then; and we are extending
          our railroad system without any aid from Congress or any other
          source, but our own ingenuity and means, and that of our friends.
          We are doing all we can to unite our brethren to co-operate in
          the building of factories, in the construction and establishment
          of machinery of various kinds, in commercial operation, in the
          building of railroads, the enclosing of farms, and in every
          branch of business possible we are endeavoring to unite the
          people in order to save labor, economize, and produce within
          ourselves as many articles as we possibly can that we need to
          consume, and some to sell, for our history for the past few years
          has proved that we have traded too much--we have bought more
          merchandize than the products of the country would justify, and a
          system of manufacturing is very important, and our people have
          constructed some very fine mills for the manufacture of woolen
          and other goods.
          While we are tracing, for the consideration of our friends, our
          progress, we here say that we have had very little encouragement
          from the outside. Our mines were worthless in this country until
          the railroad was built. In 1852, we presented to Congress, by our
          Delegate, Dr. Bernhisal, a petition for a railroad across the
          continent. Members of Congress then ridiculed the idea as being a
          hundred years ahead of the age. Our Delegate invited his friends
          to come and see him when the road was constructed, and some of
          them have done so. The memorial was presented six or eight times,
          being repeated session after session, before any steps were taken
          by Congress towards the construction of the road, and it was
          finally completed much earlier then it would have been had it not
          been for the co-operation of the people of this Territory who
          made the road-bed for four hundred miles aver the worst part of
          the route, and also furnished a good deal of business for the
          road to do when it was finished.
          As soon as the railroad was completed mines here, containing
          lead, with a small per cent of silver, became valuable. They were
          not worked before. Of course we worked them a little when we
          wanted a little lead, but the silver mines, as they are termed
          now, were not worth a dollar then. But as soon as the great
          railroad and our branch lines were completed the mining property
          of the country became valuable. It would have seemed that a wise
          government would have encouraged such enterprises, but this has
          not been the policy of the General Government towards Utah. They
          have seemed to think that all that was necessary was to send
          governors and judges, and to pick the most bigoted men they could
          find to fill these positions; though I must say that, during the
          twenty-four years that we have been a Territory, we have had many
          very excellent men sent here, including very good governors, and
          very good judges, and some who, I think, would have been better
          employed in the other callings. It is really an unfortunate
          circumstance to pick up men and send them to any country, to
          occupy important offices, who are totally unacquainted with the
          country and who have no interest in it, and whose prejudices are
          against the people. The better policy is the one announced in the
          Declaration of Independence, that, in relation to these United
          States, the consent of the governed should be had. This would be
          a better policy, more republican and more agreeable, but we seem
          to be a special people, and, of course, acts have to be performed
          for our special case.
          There is one ground of complaint that is alleged against us here,
          and that is, we believe in a plurality of wives. A great many men
          and woman have practiced this principle rigidly, in all good
          faith; and until we can find some man who can show us a single
          passage in either the Old or New Testament, that actually
          prohibits it, we feel justified in following the examples of
          Prophets, Patriarchs, and holy men, fathers of the faithful,
          believing that if it were right in their case it can not be wrong
          in ours. We are told that the Old Testament sets forth such an
          example, but that the New Testament condemns it, for the Savior
          did it away. The only question I would ask in reference to this
          subject it--If the Savior did away with plural marriage, why
          didn't he say so? If the Apostles put it down why did they not
          tell us of it? In the last two chapters of the Bible we have an
          account of the Holy City, the New Jerusalem, the gates of which
          we are told are to be named after the twelve sons of four wives
          by one father; and if we enter the gates of that city we face
          this polygamy, and if we can not face this polygamy we cannot
          enter the gates into the city. So we understand the New
          Testament. On account of our belief in and practice of the
          Scriptural doctrine, extraordinary legislation has been asked
          against us, that our lives, liberty, property and pursuit of
          happiness may be at the control of four or five individuals. This
          is the extreme of folly.
          In considering this subject, let us ask where, in all the world,
          has a Territory been settled under as many disadvantages as this?
          Where have a hundred and fifty thousand people been collected
          together and exhibited more order, and given proof of more
          industry and prosperity under the circumstances than we have?
          Nowhere. Brigham Young, as President of the Church and leader of
          the people, from the death of Joseph Smith to the present time,
          through the influence that he has exercised with his brethren and
          friends throughout the world, has been able to bring thousands of
          people from America and other nations, and to locate them in
          these valleys and put them in possession of happy homes, and to
          make thriving, flourishing and prosperous communities. "By their
          fruits ye shall know them." Then, the true policy is to leave men
          to the enjoyment of their religion, to the enjoyment of the holy
          Gospel as they may receive it, extending liberty, peace, good
          order and happiness to all. I believe to-day there is no
          Territory so lightly taxed and, with all the drawbacks, none so
          well governed as this. It is true that since the railroad has
          come here there has drifted-in a population in favor of
          sustaining grog-shops. I notice that in the last week a petition
          has been signed by four thousand ladies, asking the City Council
          to shut up the drinking hells. These institutions are a portion
          of civilization that has followed the railroad, and the would
          have caused astonishment here a few years ago. I wish the City
          Council would grant the petition of the ladies; I suppose they
          may be restrained by a decision of a court which claims to
          question their jurisdiction; but I have no doubt the City Council
          will shut up these hells if it is in their power, consistent with
          the relations that exist between the Territorial authorities and
          those of the United States. But I am ashamed of our Congressmen,
          I am ashamed of our judges, I am ashamed of our federal
          authorities for fastening upon a people such a system of
          drunkenness, licentiousness and debauchery, while they are make
          such a terrible howl over a man who may have two wives, and who
          labors hard for their support, and for the education of their
          children, and acknowledges them honorably before the world.
          Everybody to his taste.
          When Mr. Morrill, of Vermont, the author of what is termed the
          anti-polygamy bill of 1862, told me that he would not care
          anything about plurality of wives if it were not in the United
          States, and he was afraid that Vermont was partly responsible for
          it, I told him that they had a system of licensing prostitution
          in Vermont. I, however, should raise no objection to that, but I
          felt myself disgraced and ashamed because I was associated with a
          State that licensed such a system as that; and that if I could
          put up with Vermont, he could put up with Utah, that was not more
          than fair, it was shake for shake.
          I heard it stated, or read, not long since, that a hundred
          thousand infanticides annually occur on Manhattan Island. That is
          a most horrible state of affairs if it is half true, or quarter
          true. Can nothing be done to change this system? I will refer my
          friends to the pamphlet published by a very learned minister,
          Rev. Doctor Tood, of Pittsfield, Mass., showing the spirit of
          death, corruption, licentiousness, and murder that exists, even
          in the churches among professing Christians in Massachusetts and
          other parts of New England. I felt not a little surprised to go
          back into the neighborhood where I was raised, where they used to
          have fifty scholars annually, to find that they were borrowing
          one or two from another neighborhood to make out fifteen, so that
          they could draw the public money. There were as many houses in
          the neighborhood as formerly, and a few more, new ones, had been
          built; there were also more families in the neighborhood, but
          they had stopped having children. I, as an American citizen, feel
          myself disgraced to be associated with any community who have
          adopted these expedients, at the same time I do not expect, under
          any circumstances, ever to undertake to interfere with their
          local regulations, and I simply ask my fellow men to give us the
          same opportunity.
          The Lord has blessed us with many children, and there is no
          Latter-day Saint, who has an abiding faith in the Gospel and in
          the great command which God first gave to the children of men, to
          multiply and replenish the earth, but what rejoices in them, and
          regards them as blessing from on high; and nobody in the
          mountains that I know of has ever complained of the number of
          children, except some of our friends up here in Idaho. When they
          ran the southern line of Idaho, it was found that several
          settlements and parts of three counties, before then supposed to
          be in Utah, were in that Territory. The people of Idaho have a
          school law and a school fund, and the most that had been done
          before with this find was to give it to the officers; but with
          the addition of the "Mormon" settlements to the territory, there
          was an addition of several thousand "Mormon" children, and they
          were included in the school report. The officers said--"This
          cannot be, this must be a humbug, there cannot be anything like
          this number of children;" but when they came to investigate and
          count noses they found it verily true, and there were "Mormon"
          people raising hearty, hale little fellows to walk over these
          mountains and make them blossom like the rose.
          I remember once, in traveling through the State of Indiana,
          encountering a gentleman who called himself Professor Jones,
          connected with a university there. He asked me a great many
          questions about our system in the mountains, and wanted to know
          how we did this and how we did that. I explained it to him as
          correctly as I could. I traveled with him a day or two, and he
          kept asking questions and making notes. When we parted he said he
          was very much surprised, he has supposed that our system was one
          of immorality, but he had learned to the contrary. He did not
          pretend to say anything about its justness and correctness; of
          course he did not sympathize with it, but one thing was sure,
          said he, "If you continue the course you are now pursuing, you
          will produce a set of men in those mountains who will be able to
          walk the rest of mankind under their feet." I suppose, like
          enough, he may be one of the men who would like to proscribe us
          now. I know this, if the reports of learned men are true, the
          course now being pursued by a great many of our Christian friends
          in the East, will, in a few generation, wipe out the race of '76
          and give the country into the hands of strangers. It is time that
          somebody was fulfilling the great command of God, to multiply and
          replenish the earth, and put away licentiousness, and labor for
          the upbuilding and welfare of the human race.
          Men take up "Mormonism," and they say it is a humbug. There is
          where they make a mistake. My friends, the Gospel, as preached by
          the Latter-day Saints, is true. "Mormonism" is no humbug. Joseph
          Smith was a true Prophet; he revealed a true religion, and all
          attempts to destroy it will prove vain. I bear this testimony, I
          know this to be true, and I warn my fellowmen to receive this
          faith, and to repent and believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. Repent
          of your sins and be baptized for their remission, and receive the
          laying on of hands, that you may enjoy the gift of the Holy
          Ghost, for that Spirit will rest upon you if you receive and obey
          this Gospel with full purpose of heart. Then add to your faith
          virtue, to your virtue knowledge, to our knowledge temperance, to
          your temperance patience, to your patience godliness, to your
          godliness brotherly kindness, to your brotherly kindness charity,
          and if these things be and abound in you, you will neither be
          barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior
          Jesus Christ. You will know these things for yourselves, and you
          will testify, as I testify, that you know this work is the work
          of God.
          May God enable us to do so, is my prayer in the name of Jesus.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / Orson
          Pratt, June 14, 1874
                                 ratt, June 14, 1874
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER ORSON PRATT,
                  Delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                          Sunday Afternoon, June 14, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          There seems to be at the present time a great deal of interest
          manifested among the Latter-day Saints, and even among those who
          are connected with our Church, in regard to some instructions
          that have been imparted to the Latter-day Saints in relation to
          their temporal affairs. The instruction which have been imparted,
          and which the people are, in some measure, receiving, are
          comparatively new in their estimation, that is, it is supposed
          they are new, and something which we, in times past, have not
          practiced. But if we appeal to the revelations of God, we shall
          find that no new thing has been required of us. It is generally
          termed, however, by Latter-day Saints, the New Order. You hear of
          it in all parts of the Territory. What is meant by the New Order?
          Is it really new in the revelations of God, or is it something
          new for us to practice it? We have been required in the past year
          1874, to come back again to an old order, as taught in ancient
          Mormonism. What I mean by ancient Mormonism is Mormonism as it
          was taught some forty-three or forty-four years ago. There is a
          generation now living on the earth who seem to be comparatively
          ignorant of the doctrines which were taught some forty years ago
          to men who are now old and have grey heads and gray beards. Since
          that time a new generation has arisen; and they begin to think
          that something new, something that will turn things upside down,
          is being introduced into Mormonism. I will say to all who have
          such ideas, you are entirely mistaken, it is not so; we are
          trying to get the people to come back again to the old principles
          of Mormonism to that which God revealed in the early rise of this
          Every man, whether he is or is not a Latter-day Saint, when he
          comes to study our written works, the written revelations which
          God has given, will acknowledge that the Latter-day Saints cannot
          be the people they profess to be, they cannot be consistent with
          the revelations they profess to believe in and live as they now
          live; they have got to come into the system which the Saints call
          the New Order, otherwise they cannot comply with the revelations
          of God.
          I believe that I will quote a few revelations this morning, in
          order to show you what God said in relation to property or
          temporal things, in the early rise of this church. The first
          revelation that now occurs to my mind will be found in the Book
          of Doctrine and Covenants, on page 217; it was given in March,
          1831, forty-three years ago last March. In the third paragraph of
          this revelation we read these words:
          "For, behold, the beasts of the field and the fowls of the air,
          and that which cometh of the earth, is ordained for the use of
          man for food and for raiment, and that he might have in
          abundance; but it is not given that one man should possess that
          which is above another, wherefore the world lieth in sin."
          Do you believe this revelation Latter-day Saints? "Oh, yes," says
          one--"we believe Joseph Smith was a Prophet." Have you practiced
          it? Oh, that is another thing. How, then, are we to know that you
          believe this revelation if you do not practice it? How are the
          world to know you are sincere in your belief if you have a
          revelation which you profess to believe in, and yet give no heed
          to it. I do not wonder that the world say that the Latter-day
          Saints do not believe their own revelations. Why? Because we do
          not practice them. "It is not given that one man should possess
          that which is above another, wherefore the world lieth in sin."
          There may be some strangers here, and they do not believe this
          book, but I will tell you what they would say as men of reason,
          they would say that if you Latter-day Saints call this your book
          of faith, and doctrines, and covenants, to be consistent you
          ought to comply with it. That is what they would say, and it is
          really a true saying, and consistent and reasonable--If we
          believe this, let us practice it; if we do not believe in it, why
          profess to believe in it?
          I will now refer you to a revelation given on the second day of
          January, 1831, it is on page 120 of the Book of Doctrine and
          Covenants. I will tell you how this revelation was given, for I
          was present at the time it was given. The Church, then, was about
          nine months old. The Prophet Joseph, who received all the
          revelations contained in this book, was then living in the State
          of New York, in the town of Fayette, Seneca County. He called
          together the various branches of the Church that had been
          organized during the nine months previous in that State, and they
          assembled together in the house in which this Church was
          organized namely, Father Whitmer's house. You will recollect, in
          reading the Book of Mormon, that the sons of Father Whitmer,
          young men, are noted as witnesses of the Book of Mormon, David
          Whitmer having seen the angel, and the plates in the hands of the
          angel, and heard him speak, and the hand of the angel was placed
          on his head, and he said unto him--"Blessed be the Lord and they
          that keep his commandments." And he heard the voice of the Lord
          in connection with three other persons testifying out of the
          heavens, at the same time that the angel was administering, that
          the Book of Mormon had been translated correctly by the gift and
          power of God, and commanding him to bear witness of it to all
          people, nations and tongues, in connection with the other three
          that were with him. These were some of the individuals also who
          saw the plates and handled them, and saw the engravings upon
          them, and who gave their testimony to that effect in the Book of
          Mormon. It was in their father's house where this Church was
          organized, on the 6th of April, 1830; it was in their father's
          house where this little Conference was convened on the 2nd of
          January, 1831, and this Conference requested the Prophet Joseph
          Smith to inquire of the Lord concerning their duties. He did so.
          He sat down in the midst of the Conference, of less than one
          hundred, I do not know exactly the number, and a scribe wrote
          this revelation from his mouth. One item contained therein, in
          the fifth paragraph, reads thus:--
          "And let every man esteem his brother as himself, and practice
          virtue and holiness before me. And again I say unto you, let
          every man esteem his brother as himself; for what man among you
          having twelve sons, and is no respecter of them, and they serve
          him obediently, and he saith unto one, Be thou clothed in robes
          and sit thou here, and to the other, Be thou clothed in rags and
          sit thou there, and looketh upon his sons and saith, I am just.
          "Behold, this have I given unto you a parable, and it is even as
          I am: I say unto you, be one; and if ye are not one, ye are not
          Perhaps the Saints may think that this has reference to spiritual
          things alone, and means to be one in doctrine, principle,
          ordinances, faith, belief, and so on, and that it has not
          reference whatever to temporal things; but in order to show you
          that this has reference to temporal as well as to spiritual
          things, let me quote that which God said a few months after this
          in another revelation. I have not time to turn to all these
          revelations, but I will quote them. The Lord says--"Except ye are
          equal in the bonds (or bands) of earthly things, how can you be
          made equal in the bands of heavenly things?" Here was a question
          put to us: How can you be made equal in the bands of heavenly
          things, unless you are equal in the bands of earthly? Surely
          enough, we can not be made equal. If we are unequal in this life,
          and are not one, can we be entrusted with the true riches, the
          riches of eternity? I believe I will read to you a small portion
          of another revelation that was given on stewardships. The Lord
          commanded certain ones among his servants to take charge of these
          revelations when they were in manuscript, before they were
          published, that they might be printed and sent forth among the
          people, and he also gave them charge concerning the Book of
          Mormon, and made them stewards over these revelations and the
          avails arising from them. And the Lord said--"Wherefore, hearken
          and hear, for thus saith the Lord unto them, I, the Lord, have
          appointed them and ordained them to be stewards over the
          revelations and commandments which I have given unto them, and
          which I shall hereafter give unto them; and an account of this
          stewardship will I require of them in the day of judgment;
          wherefore I have appointed unto them, and this is their business
          in the Church, to manage them and the concerns thereof, and the
          benefits thereof, wherefore a commandment give I unto them that
          they shall not give these things unto the Church, and neither
          unto the world, nevertheless, inasmuch as they receive more than
          is needful for their necessities and their wants, it shall be
          given into my storehouse and the benefits shall be consecrated
          unto the inhabitants of Zion, and unto their generations,
          inasmuch as they become heirs according to the laws of the
          Now, you notice here, the Lord did not intend those individuals
          whom he named to become rich out of the avails of the sale of the
          Book of Mormon and the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, and other
          revelations and the literary concerns of his Church, he never
          intended that they should become rich while others were poor,
          that was not the order; but inasmuch as they received more than
          was needful for their support what should they do with it? Should
          they aggrandize themselves while poor brethren were destitute?
          No, not at all; they were to give all the surplus, over and above
          what was really necessary to support them, into the Lord's
          store-house, and it was to be for the benefit of all the people
          of Zion, not only the living but for their generations after
          them, inasmuch as they became heirs according to the laws of the
          kingdom of God.
          There was a certain way to become heirs according to the laws of
          the kingdom of God. Heirs of what? Heirs of the avails arising
          form the sale of the revelations which all the inhabitants of
          Zion were to be benefited by. Says one--"But perhaps that was
          limited to those six individuals who are here named and did not
          mean the whole Church." Wait, let us read the next
          sentence--"Behold, this is what the Lord requires of every man in
          his stewardship, even as I the Lord have appointed or shall
          hereafter appoint." From this we learn that all the stewards
          which the Lord had appointed; and all that he should appoint, in
          a future time, to stewardships, were to hand over all their
          surplus--all that was not necessary to feed and clothe them--into
          the Lord's store house. None who belonged to the Church of the
          living God are exempt from this law. Does that law include us? It
          includes all who belong to the Church, not one is exempt from it.
          Have we been doing this, Latter-day Saints, for that last
          forty-three years, since this revelation was given? Have we been
          complying with the order we undertook in the year 1831, to enter
          into? This old order is not a new order that you talk so much
          In the year 1831, we commenced emigrating to the western part of
          the State of Missouri, to a county, quite new then, called
          Jackson county; most of the land at that time was Government
          land. When we commenced emigrating there the Lord gave many
          revelations. The Prophet Joseph went up among some of the
          earliest to that county, and God gave many revelations contained
          in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, in relation to how the
          people should conduct their affairs. Among the revelations then
          given was the commandment that every man who should come up to
          that land should lay all things which he possessed before the
          Bishop of his Church. Another revelation, given before we went up
          to that land, speaking of a land which the Lord, at some future
          time, would give us for an inheritance, commanded that we should
          consecrate all our property into his store-house. If we had
          wagons, horses, mules, oxen, cows, sheep, farming utensils,
          household furniture, gold and silver, jewelry, wearing apparel,
          it mattered not what it was, the Lord said, in a revelation given
          in February, 1831, that it should all be laid before the Bishop
          of his Church, and that it should be consecrated to the Lord's
          store-house. This reduced us all on a level. If a man had a
          million dollars when he gathered up to Jackson County, if he
          complied with the law, he would be just as rich as the man who
          had not one farthing. Why? Because he consecrated all he had, and
          the poor man could not do any more than that, hence all who
          complied with the law were equally poor or equally rich.
          What was the next step after this consecration? In those days we
          had but one Bishop--his name was Edward Partridge, and he was
          called by revelation--and the next step after this general
          consecration, the Lord commanded the Bishop and his two
          counselors to purchase all the land in Jackson county, and in the
          counties round about, that could conveniently be got, the general
          price being one dollar and a quarter an acre. And what next?
          After purchasing these lands as far as they had the means to do
          so, every man that had consecrated his property was to receive an
          inheritance. Now recollect, none except those who consecrated,
          none who disobeyed that law, were to receive an inheritance or
          stewardship; but all who consecrated their properties according
          to this law were to receive their stewardship.
          What is the meaning of a stewardship? A steward is one who is
          accountable to somebody for the property that he manages, and
          that is his stewardship, whether it be landed property, farming
          utensils, wagons, cows, oxen, horses, harness, or whatever may be
          committed to him. To whom were the brethren in Jackson County
          accountable for the stewardship committed to them? To the Bishop.
          The Bishop was called in these revelations a common judge in
          Zion, ecclesiastically speaking, not according to the civil laws;
          so far as our ecclesiastical laws were concerned he was to be a
          common judge, and each person was to render an account of the
          stewardship which he had to the Bishop. I do not know how often;
          perhaps once a year, perhaps longer than that, perhaps oftener. I
          do not know that there was any specified time given in these
          revelations about how often these accounts should be rendered up.
          But how were the people to live out of the avails of the
          stewardship committed to their charge? They were to have food and
          raiment, and the necessary comforts of life. Well, of course, a
          wise and faithful steward, having health and strength, and
          perhaps a good deal of talent, might so take charge of a
          stewardship that he might gain more than he and his family
          needed, and keeping an account of all these things and rendering
          the same when required, some of them would have a considerable
          surplus above that which they and their families needed. What was
          to be done with that? Why, as stewards, they would have to
          consecrate it into the Lord's storehouse, the Lord being the
          owner of the property and we only his stewards.
          There were some men who were entrusted with a larger stewardship
          than others. For instance, here was a man who knew nothing about
          farming particularly, but he might be a master spirit as far as
          some other branch of business was concerned. He might understand
          how to carry on a great cloth manufactory and everything in the
          clothing line necessary for the inhabitants of Zion. Such a man
          would require a greater stewardship than the man who cultivated a
          small farm, and had only himself and a wife and two or three
          children to support. But would the fact of one man having a
          greater stewardship than another make one richer than another?
          No. Why not? Because, if one received fifty or a hundred thousand
          dollars to build and stock a large manufactory for the purpose of
          manufacturing various kinds of fabrics for clothing, although he
          might have a surplus of several thousand dollars at the end of
          the year, he would not be any richer than the farmer with his few
          acres of land, and let me show you how they would be equal. The
          manufacturer does not own the building, the machinery, the cotton
          or the flax, as the case may be, he is only a steward, like the
          farmer, and if, at the end of the year, he has five, ten, or
          fifty thousand dollars surplus, does that make him a rich man? By
          no means, it goes into the Lord's storehouse at the end of each
          year, or as often as may be required, thus leaving him on the
          same platform of equality with the farmer and his small
          stewardship. Do you not see the equality of the thing? In
          temporal matters it is not given that one man shall possess that
          which is above another, saith the Lord.
          Now did the people really enter into this, or was is mere theory?
          I answer that, in the year 1831, we did try to enter into this
          order of things, but the hearts of the people had been so
          accustomed to holding property individually, that it was a very
          difficult matter to get them to comply with this law of the Lord.
          Many of them were quite wealthy, and they saw that on that land a
          great city called Zion, or the New Jerusalem, was to be built;
          they understood that from the revelations, and they said in their
          hearts--"What a fine chance this will be for us to get rich. We
          have means and money, and if we consecrate according to the law
          of God we can not get rich; but we know that people by thousands
          and tens of thousands will gather up here, and these lands will
          become very valuable. We can now get them at the government
          price, a dollar and a quarter an acre, and if we lay out a few
          thousands in land, we can sell it out to the brethren when they
          come along at a thousand per cent profit, and perhaps in some
          cases at ten thousand per cent, and make ourselves wealthy, so we
          will not consecrate, but we will go ahead for ourselves
          individually, and we will buy up lands to speculate upon." These
          were the feelings of some who went up to that country; but others
          were willing to comply with the word of God, and did just as the
          revelation required, and they laid everything they had before the
          Bishop, and received their stewardship.
          After he had organized these things, Joseph the Prophet, in
          August of the year 1831, went back to Kirtland, about a thousand
          miles east, and while there the Lord revealed to him that the
          inhabitants of Jackson were not complying with his word; hence
          Joseph sent letters up to them containing the word of the Lord,
          chastening them because of their disobedience and rebellion
          against the law of heaven. He did this on several occasions, and
          one occasion, especially, as you will find recorded in the
          history published in some of our periodicals. I think you will
          find it in the fifteenth volume of the Millennial Star, in
          language something like this--"If the people will not comply with
          my law, which I have given them concerning the consecration of
          their property, the land shall not be a land of Zion unto them,
          but their names shall be blotted out, and the names of their
          children and their children's children, so long as they will not
          comply with my laws, and their names shall not be found written
          in the book of the law of the Lord."
          In another revelation, published in the Book of Doctrine and
          Covenants, the Lord says--"The rebellious are not of the blood of
          Ephraim, wherefore they shall be plucked up and shall be sent
          away out of the land." When this revelation was given all was
          peace in Jackson County. We had no enemies there any more than we
          had elsewhere, wherever the Church might be located; all was
          comparative peace. But the Lord said that the rebellious should
          be plucked up and sent away out of the land. The people thought
          there was no prospect whatever of that revelation being
          fulfilled. All was peace, and to say that they were to be plucked
          up and driven out of the land was out of the question. They did
          not repent, that is all of them;, but continued in their
          disobedience, neglecting to consecrate their properties,
          according to the requirements of the law of the Lord; and hence,
          when they had been there about two years and five months from the
          time of their first settlement or location, they were literally
          plucked up and cast away out of the land. You have the history
          before you. Their enemies arose upon them and began to tear down
          their houses, and they burned two hundred and three of the
          dwellings our people had built in that land. They burned down
          their grain stacks, hay stacks and fences, and chased the
          Latter-day Saints around from one part of the county to another,
          sometimes tying them up to trees and whipping them, in some
          instances until their bowels gushed out. They tore down the
          printing office and destroyed it, also one of our dry goods
          stores, and scattered the good through the streets; they went
          into houses and, taking therefrom the bedding and furniture,
          piled them up in the streets and set fire to them, and thus they
          continued their persecutions until, finally, they succeeded in
          driving the Latter-day Saints from the county, and thus the word
          of the Lord was fulfilled which said--"I will pluck them up and
          send them away out of the land, for none but the obedient shall
          eat of the good of the land of latter Zion in these latter days."
          Another revelation God gave, to warn the people, in which he told
          them to remember the Book of Mormon, and the new covenant which
          he had revealed, and which, if they did not observe, he
          said--"Behold, I the Lord have a scourge and a judgment which
          shall be poured out upon your heads." This was given between one
          and two years before we were driven out of that country, in
          Kirtland, Ohio, through the Prophet Joseph, and sent up to them
          to warn them. Another revelation said if the people did not do
          thus and so, they should be persecuted from city to city, and
          from synagogue to synagogue, and but few should stand to receive
          an inheritance--meaning those who had gone into that county.
          Now go through this Territory, from one end thereof to the other,
          hunt up the greyheaded and greybearded men and old ladies who
          were once in Jackson county, and see how many you can find who
          lived there then, and you can judge whether the word of the Lord
          has been fulfilled or not. I guess that you will find but very
          few if you hunt all through the Territory.
          Let us read a little further in the revelations, and see whether
          God has cast us entirely off or not. In one of the revelations,
          given after we were driven out across the Missouri River into
          Clay County, and into the surrounding counties, the Lord said,
          concerning the people who were scattered and driven--"Behold, I
          have suffered these things to come upon them because of their
          sins and wickedness; but notwithstanding all these afflictions
          which have come upon my people, I will be merciful unto them, and
          in the day of wrath I will remember mercy, wherefore I, the Lord,
          will not utterly cast them off." Though but few should stand to
          receive an inheritance, the Lord said he would not utterly cast
          them off.
          What next? He gives an inferior law, called the law of Tithing,
          suited and adapted to us. After we had been driven for neglecting
          to comply with the greater law of consecration of all we had, he
          thought he would not leave us without a law, but he gave us an
          inferior law, namely, that we should give in one-tenth part of
          our annual income. This law was given in May, 1838, I do not
          remember the exact date, and I believe that we have tried to
          comply with it; but it has been almost an impossibility to get
          the people universally to comply with it.
          There is another item connected with this law of Tithing that has
          but seldom been complied with, namely the consecration of all
          surplus property. Now go round among the Saints, among the
          emigrants who have gathered up from time to time, and there has
          been only now and then a man who had any surplus property, let
          him be the judge. If a man had fifty or a hundred thousand
          dollars, he said in his own heart--"I really need all this, I
          want to speculate, I want to buy a great deal of land to sell
          again when the price of land shall rise; I want to set up a great
          store in which to sell merchandise to the people, and if I
          consecrate any of this it will curtail my operations, because it
          will diminish my capital, and I cannot speculate to the extent I
          should if I retained it all, and I shall therefore consider that
          I have no surplus property. Now an honest-hearted individual
          would have a little surplus property, and he would put it in; but
          from that day until the present time I presume that the tenth of
          their annual income has been paid by the majority of the people.
          I do not really know in relation to this matter, at any rate the
          lord has not utterly forsaken us, hence I think we have kept his
          law in some measure, or in all probability he would have cast us
          off altogether.
          But how is it that we have been smitten, driven, cast out and
          persecuted, and the lives of our prophet and Patriarch and
          hundreds of others destroyed by rifle, cannon, and sword in the
          hands of our enemies? How is it that such things have been
          permitted in this free republic? "Oh," says one, "It is because
          you practiced polygamy." I answer that we did not practice
          polygamy in the days of the persecutions which I have named, they
          came upon us before we began that practice, for the revelation on
          polygamy was not given until some thirteen years after the rise
          of this Church, and that was after we had been driven and smitten
          and scattered to and fro, here and there by the hands of our
          enemies, hence, it was not for that that we were persecuted. But
          if we take the printed circulars written by our enemies, we can
          give you their reasons for persecuting us. One of their reasons
          was that we believed in ancient Christianity, namely, speaking in
          tongues, interpretation of tongue, healing the sick, etc.; and
          our enemies did not believe in having a community in their midst
          who claimed to have Apostles and Prophets and to enjoy the gifts
          of the Gospel the same as the ancient Saints. Our enemies said
          they would not have such a people in their society, and if we did
          not renounce these things they would drive us from our homes. You
          can read this with the name of the mob attached to it, in
          connection with a great many priests and ministers of different
          denominations. The Rev. Isaac M'Coy and the Rev. Mr. Bogard, and
          many others who might be named, were among the leaders of the mob
          who persecuted the Latter-day Saints.
          Now, why is it, Latter-day Saints, that we have been tossed to
          and fro and smitten and persecuted for these many years? It is
          because we have disobeyed the law of heaven, we have not kept the
          commandments of the Most High God, we have not fulfilled his law;
          we have disobeyed the word which he gave through his servant
          Joseph, and hence the Lord has suffered us to be smitten and
          afflicted under the hands of our enemies.
          Shall we ever return to the law of God? Yes. When? Why, when we
          will. We are agents; we can abide his law or reject it, just as
          long as we please, for God has not taken away your agency nor
          mine. But I will try to give you some information in regard to
          the time. God said, in the year 1832, before we were driven out
          of Jackson County, in a revelation which you will find here in
          this book, that before that generation should all pass away, a
          house of the Lord should be built in that county, (Jackson
          County), "upon the consecrated spot, as I have appointed; and the
          glory of God, even a cloud by day and a pillar of flaming fire by
          night shall rest upon that same." In another place, in the same
          revelation, speaking of the priesthood, he says that the sons of
          Moses and the sons of Aaron, those who had received the two
          priesthoods, should be filled with the glory of God upon Mount
          Zion, in the Lord's house, and should receive a renewing of their
          bodies, and the blessings of the Most High should be poured out
          upon them in great abundance.
          This was given forty-two years ago. The generation then living
          was not only to commence a house of God in Jackson County,
          Missouri, but was actually to complete the same, and when it is
          completed the glory of God should rest upon it.
          Now, do you Latter-day Saints believe that? I do, and if you
          believe in these revelations you just as much expect the
          fulfillment of that revelation as of any one that God has ever
          given in these latter times, or in former ages. We look, just as
          much for this to take place, according to the word of the Lord,
          as the Jews look to return to Palestine, and to re-build
          Jerusalem upon the place where it formerly stood. They expect to
          build a Temple there, and that the glory of God will enter into
          it; so likewise do we Latter-day Saints expect to return to
          Jackson County and to build a Temple there before the generation
          that was living forty-two years ago has all passed away. Well,
          then, the time must be pretty near when we shall begin that work.
          Now, can we be permitted to return and build up the waste places
          of Zion, establish the great central city of Zion in Jackson
          County, Mo., and build a Temple on which the glory of God will
          abide by day and by night, unless we return, not to the "new
          order," but to the law which was given in the beginning of this
          work? Let me answer the question by quoting one of these
          revelations again, a revelation given in 1834. The Lord speaking
          of the return of his people, and referring to those who were
          driven from Jackson County, says--"They that remain shall return,
          they and their children with them to receive their inheritances
          in that land of Zion, with songs of everlasting joy upon their
          heads." There will be a few that the Lord will spare to go back
          there, because they were not all transgressors. There were only
          two that the Lord spared among Israel during their forty years
          travel--Caleb and Joshua. They were all that were spared, out of
          some twenty-five hundred thousand people, from twenty years old
          and upwards, to go into the land of promise. There may be three
          in our day, or a half dozen or a dozen spared that were once on
          that land who will be permitted to return with their children,
          grand-children and great-grand-children unto the waste places of
          Zion and build them up with songs of everlasting joy.
          But will they return after the old order of things that exists
          among the Gentiles--every man for himself, this individualism in
          regard to property? No, never, never while the world stands. If
          you would have these revelations fulfilled you must comply with
          the conditions thereof. The Lord said, concerning the building up
          of Zion when we do return--"Except Zion be built according to the
          law of the celestial kingdom, I can not receive her unto myself."
          If we should be permitted, this present year, 1874, to go back to
          that county, and should undertake to build up a city of Zion upon
          the consecrated spot, after the order that we have been living in
          during the last forty years, we should be cast out again, the
          Lord would not acknowledge us as his people, neither would he
          acknowledge the works of our hands in the building of a city. If
          we would go back then, we must comply with the celestial law, the
          law of consecration, the law of oneness, which the Lord has
          spoken of from the beginning. Except you are one you are not
          mine. Query, if we are not the Lord's who in the world or out of
          the world do we belong to? Here is a question for us all to
          consider. There is no other way for us to become one but by
          keeping the law of heaven, and when we do this we shall become
          sanctified before God, and never before.
          Talk about sanctification, we do not believe in the kind of
          sanctification taught by the sectarian religion--that they were
          sanctified at such a minute and such an hour and at such a place
          while they were praying in secret. We believe in the
          sanctification that comes by continued obedience to the law of
          heaven. I do not know of any other sanctification that the
          Scriptures tell about, of any other sanctification that is worth
          the consideration of rational beings. If we would be sanctified
          then, we must begin to-day, or whenever, the Lord points out, to
          obey his laws just as far as we possibly can; and by obedience to
          these laws we continually gain more and more favor from heaven,
          more and more of the Spirit of God, and thus will be fulfilled a
          revelation given in 1834, which says that before Zion is
          redeemed, let the armies of Israel become very great, let them
          become sanctified before me, that they may be as fair as the sun,
          clear as the moon, and that their banners may be terrible unto
          all the nations of the earth. Not terrible by reason of numbers,
          but terrible because of the sanctification they will receive
          through obedience to the Law of God. Why was Enoch, and why were
          the inhabitants of Zion built up before the flood terrible to all
          the nations around about? It was because, through a long number
          of years, they observed the law of God, and when their enemies
          came up to fight against them, Enoch, being filled with the power
          of the Holy Ghost, and speaking the word of God in power and in
          faith, the very heavens trembled and shook, and the earth quaked,
          and mountains were thrown down, rivers of water were turned out
          of their course, and all nations feared greatly because of the
          power of God, and the terror of his might that were upon his
          We have this account of ancient Zion in one of the revelations
          that God has given. What was it that made their banners terrible
          to the nations? It was not their numbers. If, then Zion must
          become great it will be because of her sanctification. When shall
          we begin, Latter-day Saints, to carry out the law of God, and
          enter upon the process necessary to our sanctification? We are
          told by the highest authority that God has upon the earth that
          now is the accepted time and now is the day of salvation, so far
          as entering into this order which God has pointed out is
          concerned. Shall we do it? Or shall we say no? Shall there be
          division among the people, those who are on the Lords' side come
          out and those who are against the law of God come out? I hope
          this division will not be at present. I hope that we shall take
          hold with one heart and with one mind. The time of the division
          will come soon enough. It will be in the great day of the Lord's
          power, when his face shall be unveiled in yonder heavens, and
          when he shall come in his glory and in his might. Then the
          heavens will be shaken and the earth will reel to and fro like a
          drunken man. "Then," saith the Lord, "I will send forth mine
          angels to gather out of my kingdom all things that offend and
          that do iniquity." That will be time enough for this great
          division. Let us not be divided now, Latter-day Saints, but let
          us manifest our willingness to comply with the word and law of
          the Most High, and be prepared for the blessings which he has in
          store for us.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 /
          Brigham Young, June 26, 1874
                            Brigham Young, June 26, 1874
          Delivered in the Bowery, at Brigham City, Saturday Morning, June
                                      26, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                                      WITH THE
                                     THE SON OF
                                     BEFORE US.
          A few of us have come to talk to the people in this place upon
          the things of the kingdom of God, as our calling is to preach the
          Gospel, initiate people into, and proceed with, the organization
          of the kingdom of God as far as we can, preparatory to the coming
          of the Son of Man. We have commenced to organize, I will say
          partially, in the Holy Order that God has established for his
          people in all ages of the world when he has had a kingdom upon
          the earth. We may call it the Order of Enoch, the Order of
          Joseph, the Order of Peter, or Abraham, or Moses, and then go
          back to Noah, and then step to our own position here, and say
          that we will organize as far as we have the privilege, taking
          into consideration and acting under the laws of the land. Many
          branches of industry have been organized here to help to sustain
          each other, to labor for the good of all, and to establish
          cooperation in the midst of the Church in this place.
          In most of the business transactions of this Church and people,
          as far as I have directed, I have waited for business to be
          presented, and endeavored to so live that the Lord will dictate
          according to his own mind and pleasure, and, at the very time it
          is necessary, have that knowledge which will enable us to perform
          every labor acceptably to God and to the heavens, and to
          discharge our duties one to another, and to accomplish in every
          particular the work which our Father in heaven has given us to
          do. I am a minute-man. It is very seldom that I take thought what
          I shall say or what I shall do. When we meet in the capacity of a
          Conference, the business matters are presented, and I generally
          know what to do, and I do not know but what I understand the
          workings of the kingdom of God upon the earth, by the
          manifestations of the Spirit at the moment, as well as I should
          if I had studied them for months; and I can truly say that I have
          fulfilled one of the sayings of the Savior tolerably well--too
          take no thought what ye shall say, for in the very hour or moment
          when you need it, it shall be given to you.
          I hope that, during our meetings here, the people will be edified
          and comforted, and that the system of laboring together for each
          other's good will be wisely and satisfactorily laid before them,
          and that each and every one of us, with ready minds and willing
          hearts, will proceed to do the things that are required of us by
          our Father.
          Much can be said upon the doctrine of life and salvation, but I
          will say this to the Saints in this place concerning the workings
          of the kingdom of God upon the earth--all good comes from heaven,
          all good is of the Lord; whatever promotes the happiness of
          mankind and the glory of God, whatever increases peace and
          righteousness upon the earth, and leads the people in the way of
          godliness, comfort, contentment and enjoyment, and tends to
          increase health and wealth, and life here and hereafter, is of
          God; and, in laboring for each other's welfare and happiness, if
          we can not do all that we can, and leave the event with the Lord,
          and wait the time when we can fully enter into the organization
          of the kingdom of God upon the earth, and fully upon those
          initiatory steps which will hasten the perfection of the Saints,
          and prepare them to enter into the joy of their Lord. When we are
          permitted to do in part, we will step forward and do in part, go
          as far as we can, and do as much as we can to perfect ourselves
          and prepare for the building up of the Centre Stake of Zion.
          We hope and pray that all who may speak during our meetings here
          will be filled with the Spirit of the Lord, and that those who
          pray, sing and hear may be filled with the same Spirit, that we
          may increase in knowledge and wisdom, and grow in the things of
          God. This is what we desire and what we pray for, and we hope
          that our meetings will be profitable to all.
          This is a hard place to speak in, and we request the brethren and
          sisters to be as still as they conveniently can, so that they can
          hear what is said. Let all be quiet, and every heart be lifted to
          God, that we may learn his mind and will concerning us; then ask
          for power to do his will, for a disposition to give us victory
          over every passion and slothful feeling, that we may be awake to
               Salvation and life everlasting are before us; it is our
          business to secure them in the kingdom of our God, and to prepare
          for the restoration of the inhabitants of the earth who have
          slept without the Gospel. Let us do what we can to bless
          ourselves, our posterity and our progenitors, and to save the
          human family, and so fulfill the mission which the Lord has given
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 /
          Brigham Young, June 28, 1874
                            Brigham Young, June 28, 1874
          Delivered in the Bowery, Brigham City, Sunday Afternoon, June 28,
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          I should like the people to keep as quiet as possible, I have a
          few words to say to them concerning the inheritances of the
          Saints. I will talk to them concerning the inheritances of the
          Saints. I will talk to those who are believers in the Old and New
          Testaments, as this book which lies before me is called--the
          Bible, and in the mission of the Savior. I will ask the
          Latter-day Saints if they believe that the man Christ Jesus, who
          was crucified at Jerusalem, over eighteen hundred years ago, was
          the Savior of the world, and that he paid the debt contracted by
          our first parents, and redeemed the children of men from the
          fall? Of course, they will answer in the affirmative. You
          believe, then, in the mission of the Savior to the earth? "Of
          course we do," is the answer. Do we believe that the Savior is
          heir to this earth. I will answer for all Saints and all
          believers in the Savior and say we do. Do we believe that this
          man Christ Jesus has received his inheritance; has he finished
          the work which he came into the world and was manifested in the
          flesh to accomplish? I will answer for all Christians and say he
          has not, as yet, finished his work or received the kingdom. As
          for the proof of this you can go to the Bible and all the other
          revelations that we have in our possession, and you will find it
          there. Are we co-workers with the Savior to redeem the children
          of men and all things pertaining to the earth? I will answer for
          the Saints and say that we most assuredly believe we are. All
          who, while in the flesh, received and were faithful to the
          Priesthood, labored with the Savior while they remained here, and
          when they passed into the spirit world their labors did not
          cease, but they passed into the prison, and, to this day, they
          are preaching to the spirits there, and laboring for the
          salvation of the human family and for the earth and all things
          pertaining to it.
          Have these men, who have lived upon the earth and enjoyed the
          blessings of the holy Priesthood, received their inheritances? I
          take the liberty of answering for all Saints in the negative.
          They have not received their inheritances, but they have received
          promises like Abraham of old when he was shown the land of
          Canaan, and it was promised to him that it should be his
          inheritance, and that of his seed after him forever and ever. To
          this day they have not inherited the land according to the
          promises that were made to Abraham. So it is with all others.
          Have any of us, in the latter-days, received inheritances upon
          the face of this earth that shall be everlasting? No, we are not
          prepared to receive them, and they are not prepared for us. I am
          telling you these things that you may know and understand that,
          when we talk about property, or anything else that we seem to
          possess, we have not yet received anything for an everlasting
          inheritance. If we are faithful we shall receive after a long
          time, that is, it may seem long to us who reckon time by years,
          months, weeks, days, minutes and seconds. I should like to have
          the Latter-day Saints understand what their labor is, and to have
          each one understand his duty, and then understand the reward of
          obedience to that duty.
          We get a great many good gifts here--we enjoy a great deal that
          the Lord gives us; gifts that we will say are inherent natural
          gifts. What a beautiful gift the power of the eye is for a man to
          enjoy! What a beautiful gift the power of hearing is to the
          people, and all our senses--tasting, smelling, &c., and the
          passions when they are governed and controlled, how beautiful
          they are! Shall we inherit them for ever and ever, or shall we
          take a course that they shall be taken from us?
          We are talking now to the brethren about being one, operating
          together, submitting all to the kingdom of God. What for? Am I to
          give what I have? "Why, this is my house, this is my farm, these
          are my cattle!" We only seem to have them, they are only in our
          possession for the present. "This is my wife, these are my wives,
          here are my children!" We seem to possess them, but whether we
          shall possess them forever depends entirely upon our future
          course. How long will this state of things last? Until we have
          passed the ordeals allotted to finite, intelligent beings, and
          have passed from one degree and state to another; until the work
          is completed by the Savior, pertaining to this earth, and our
          eternal salvation is sealed to us. While we live here in the
          flesh we are subject to turn to the right and to the left, and we
          have the vanities and allurements of the world to contend with;
          and we see Latter-day Saints, after traveling five, ten, twenty,
          and even forty years, faithful in the kingdom of God, turn away
          from the holy commandments. They will be lost, and all that they
          have had, and all that they think they have will be taken from
          them and given to those who are faithful; and those who are
          faithful will not receive their inheritances, so that they can
          say they are their own, until they have passed all these ordeals,
          and until the Savior has completed the work of redemption. He is
          now trying to get the people to avail themselves of the
          advantages of his atonement, and we, professedly, are enjoying
          these advantages, but how slow and slothful we are! What
          trifling, frivolous shadows, I may say vain ideas, will turn the
          hearts and the affections and judgment and will of man from the
          principles of truth! I want you to understand that you have not
          your eternal inheritances, although you may have an inheritance
          here in this city.
          By and by the centre stake of Zion may be redeemed. We may go
          there, and Zion may be built up and spread abroad and we receive
          our inheritances; and if we are faithful we shall receive all
          that has been promised to us. But suppose that we turn away from
          our covenants, all will be taken from us and given to others.
          When shall we receive our inheritances so that we can say they
          are our own? When the Savior has completed the work, when the
          faithful Saints have preached the Gospel to the last of the
          spirits who have lived here and who are designed to come to this
          earth; when the thousand years of rest shall come and thousands
          and thousands of Temples shall be built, and the servants and
          handmaids of the Lord shall have entered therein and officiated
          for themselves, and for their dead friends back to the days of
          Adam; when the last of the spirits in prison who will receive the
          Gospel has received it; when the Savior comes and receives his
          ready bride, and all who can be are saved in the various kingdoms
          of God--celestial, terrestrial and telestial, according to their
          several capacities and opportunities; when sin and iniquity are
          driven from the earth, and the spirits that now float in this
          atmosphere are driven into the place prepared for them; and when
          the earth is sanctified from the effects of the fall, and
          baptized, cleansed, and purified by fire, and returns to its
          paradisiacal state, and has become like a sea of glass, a urim
          and thummim; when all this is done, and the Savior has presented
          the earth to his Father, and it is placed in the cluster of the
          celestial kingdom, and the Son and all his faithful brethren and
          sisters have received the welcome plaudit--"Enter ye into the joy
          of your Lord," and the Savior is crowned, then and not till then,
          will the Saints receive their everlasting inheritances. I want
          you to understand this. We seem to have something now, but how
          long shall we keep it?
          The Latter-day Saints are believers in the atonement of the
          Savior, and I would like to have the Elders of Israel understand
          as far as they can all the points of doctrine in regard to the
          redemption of the human family, that they may know how to talk
          about and explain them. No one who believes in the Bible and in
          the mission of the Savior believes that the wicked are going to
          possess this earth; but they believe that when it is prepared it
          will be given to the Saints and they will inherit it. The Savior
          has requested us and all of his disciples to remember him as oft
          as we meet together, and to break bread in remembrance of his
          body which was broken for us, and to drink from the cup in
          remembrance of the blood that was shed for us. We meet, as we are
          doing to day, and partake of the bread and the water in
          compliance with this request of the Redeemer. We have a great
          work before us; and that portion of it we are now trying to
          inaugurate is not new. The doctrine of uniting together in our
          temporal labors, and all working for the good of all is from the
          beginning, from everlasting, and it will be for ever and ever. No
          one supposes for one moment that in heaven the angels are
          speculating, that they are building railroads and factories,
          taking advantage one of another, gathering up the substance there
          is in heaven to aggrandize themselves, and that they live on the
          same principle that we are in the habit of doing. No Christian,
          no sectarian Christian, in the world believes this; they believe
          that the inhabitants of heaven live as a family, that their
          faith, interests and pursuits have one end in view--the glory of
          God and their own salvation, and that they may receive more and
          more,--go on from perfection to perfection, receiving and then
          dispensing to others; they are ready to go, and ready to come,
          and willing to do whatever is required of them and to work for
          the interest of the whole community, for the good of all. We all
          believe this, and suppose we go to work and imitate them as far
          as we can. Would it be anything derogatory to the character of a
          gentleman or a lady? I think not. As far as I understand true
          principle the title of gentleman should not be applied to any man
          on the earth unless he is a good man. No gentleman takes the name
          of the Deity in vain. Some who do take his name in vain may be
          called gentleman, but it is a mistake, they are not gentlemen. A
          gentleman carries himself respectfully before the inhabitants of
          the earth at all times, in all places and under all
          circumstances, and his life is worthy of imitation. She who is
          worthy of the title of lady adorns her mind with the rich things
          of the kingdom of God; she is modest in her attire and manners;
          she is prudent, discreet and faithful, and full of all goodness,
          charity, love, and kindness, with the love of God in her heart.
          Such a woman has a right to the title of lady, and I do not
          consider that any others have, whether they are elect or not.
          We will try to imitate in some small degree, the family that
          lives in heaven, and prepare ourselves for the society that will
          dwell upon the earth when it is purified and glorified and comes
          into the presence of the Father.
          For us to think that we have an inheritance on the earth is
          folly, unless God has declared, and sealed it upon us, by
          revelation, that we shall never fall, never doubt, never come
          short of glorifying him or of doing his will in all things. No
          person, unless he is in the possession of this blessing, has the
          least right to suppose that he has an inheritance on the earth.
          For the time being we have our wives, children, farms and other
          possessions, but unless we prove ourselves worthy, what we seem
          to have will be taken from us and given to those who are worthy,
          consequently we need not worry with regard to the defects, you
          need not have the least concern in the world about meeting a man
          in the celestial kingdom that you, if you are worthy and are so
          happy as to get into the celestial kingdom, can not fellowship;
          and if you should happen to be the one that is in fault and you
          cannot pass the sentinel, and your neighbor or brother does, he
          will not see you there, you need not be concerned in the least
          about being joined to any person by the holy sealing power, that
          will not do right in the next world. I say to my sisters in the
          kingdom, who are sealed to men, and who say, "We do not want this
          man in eternity if he is going to conduct himself there as he
          does here"--there is not the least danger in the world of your
          ever seeing him in eternity or of his seeing you there if he
          proves himself unworthy here. But if he honors his Priesthood,
          and you are to blame and come short of doing your duty, and prove
          yourself unworthy of celestial glory, it will be left to him to
          do what he pleases with you. You will be very glad to get to him
          if you find the fault was in yourself and not in him. But if you
          are not at fault, be not troubled about being joined to him
          there, for no man will have the privilege of gathering his wives
          and children around him there unless he proves himself worthy of
          I have said a number of times, and I will say again, to you
          ladies who want to get a bill of divorce from your husbands,
          because they do not treat you right, or because you do not
          exactly like their ways, there is a principe upon which a woman
          can leave a man, but if the man honors his Priesthood, it will be
          pretty hard work for you to get away from him. If he is just and
          right, serves God and is full of justice, love, mercy and truth,
          he will have the power that is sealed upon him, and will do what
          he pleases with you. When you want to get a bill of divorce, you
          had better wait and find out whether the Lord is willing to give
          you one or not, and not come to me. I tell the brethren and
          sisters, when they come to me and want a bill of divorce, that I
          am ready to seal people and administer in the ordinances, and
          they are welcome to my services, but when they undertake to break
          the commandments and tear to pieces the doings of the Lord, I
          make them give me something. I tell a man he has to give me ten
          dollars if he wants a divorce. For what? My services? No, for his
          foolishness. If you want a bill of divorce give me ten dollars,
          so that I can put it down in the book that such a man and such a
          woman have dissolved partnership. Do you think you have obtained
          a bill of divorce? No, nor ever can if you are faithful to the
          covenants you have made. It takes a higher power than a bill of
          divorce to take a woman from a man who is a good man and honors
          his Priesthood--it must be a man who possesses a higher power in
          the Priesthood, or else the woman is bound to her husband, and
          will be forever and ever. You might as well ask me for a piece of
          blank paper for a divorce, as to have a little writing on it,
          saying--"We mutually agree to dissolve partnership and keep
          ourselves apart from each other," &c. It is all nonsense and
          folly; there is no such thing in the ordinances of the house of
          God; you cannot find any such law. It is true Jesus told the
          people that a man could put away his wife for fornication, but
          for nothing short of this. There is a law for you to be obedient,
          and humble and faithful.
          Now, brethren, the man that honors his Priesthood, the woman that
          honors her Priesthood, will receive an everlasting inheritance in
          the kingdom of God; but it will not be until this earth is
          purified and sanctified, and ready to be offered up to the
          Father. But we can go to work now and live as near as we can like
          the family of heaven, that we may secure to ourselves the
          blessings of heaven and of earth, of time and of eternity, and
          life everlasting in the presence of the Father and the Son. This
          is what we want to do. Remember it, brethren and sisters, and try
          to live worthy of the vocation of your high calling. You are
          called to be Saints--just think of and realize it, for the
          greatest honor and privilege that can be conferred upon a human
          being is to have the privilege of being a Saint. The honor of the
          kings and queens of the earth fades into insignificance when
          compared with the title of Saints. You may possess earthly power,
          and rule with an iron hand, but that power is nothing, it will
          soon be broken and pass away; but the power of those who live and
          honor the Priesthood will increase forever and ever.
          Now I am going to yield for my brethren to talk to you. I have
          said a few things. Remember the exhortation I gave you this
          morning. Live according to the faith of our religion. Let
          contention, all contention cease; cease finding fault with and
          casting reflections upon those who are not exactly with us. Let
          us show by our daily walk and doings that we have something
          better than they have. I will say to you who enter this Order,
          with regard to your temporal affairs, cease your extravagance.
          The Lord has said he would make the Latter-day Saints the richest
          people on the earth; but all he will do is to give us the ability
          and place means in our possession, and we must go to work and
          organize this means and make ourselves rich; and the first step
          is to stop our extravagance, cease this needless expense, learn
          to make that which we wear, raise that which we eat, live within
          ourselves, accumulate the good things of life, and so make
          ourselves wealthy.
          I pray the Lord our God to bless you and to inspire every heart
          to faithfulness, that we may be prepared for a better place than
          this--for this world when it shall be sanctified and glorified,
          that we may then enjoy the society of each other without sin and
          without these annoyances.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / George
          Q. Cannon, July 12, 1874
                           George Q. Cannon, July 12, 1874
                        DISCOURSE BY ELDER GEORGE Q. CANNON,
                  Delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                          Sunday Afternoon, July 12, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          I rejoice, to-day, in the opportunity which I have of meeting
          with my brethren and sisters, but it would give me much greater
          satisfaction to sit and look upon their faces, and to listen to
          the voice or voices of others, than to occupy the time myself. I
          am thankful, however, that I am in your midst, and that
          circumstances are so favorable with us as they are.
          I expect, from all I have heard that this past season has been
          one of some degree of anxiety on the part of the Latter-day
          Saints in the Territory of Utah. But I do not believe that your
          happiness has been much interfered with, if I am to judge of your
          feelings by my own. We have had so many things to contend with
          all the days that we have been associated with this work, and we
          made calculations when we espoused it upon the character of the
          opposition to be contended with, that when we meet it there is no
          disappointment. In this respect the Latter-day Saints differ from
          every other people with whom I have ever met. If any other people
          in this government were assailed as the Latter-day Saints have
          been, and were to have so many intolerant and sweeping measures
          suggested for legislation by the Congress of the United States,
          real estate would be of very little value, and all kinds of
          business would be unsettled and ruined. But I cannot perceive
          that values, business, or your faith in the Gospel of the Lord
          Jesus Christ has been in the least disturbed.
          I have been questioned a good many times since I returned, as to
          my feelings during my absence. My reply has been that I never
          felt better in my life than during the past eight months. I have
          been absent from home a good many times, and I have traveled in a
          good many lands, and mingled with many people under a variety of
          circumstances, but I can say truly this day, that at no period in
          any of my travels, or under the different circumstances in which
          I have been placed, have I ever felt better than I have during my
          recent absence from home.
          This may surprise some who are not acquainted with this work,
          and, in fact, it may excite some degree of surprise in the
          breasts of those who are familiar with it; but my theory is that
          when a man is conscious, or a people are conscious, that he or
          they are in the path of duty, doing that which is right in the
          sight of God, they should always be happy, no matter what the
          circumstances may be which surround them. I think that God has
          created us to be happy, and my belief is that he has placed
          happiness within the reach of all, and it is man's own fault if
          he is not happy and does not enjoy himself every day of his life.
          This is one of my reasons for liking my religion, this system
          called "Mormonism," because it bestows full happiness and joy
          upon its believers. They can be happy in the midst of them most
          adverse circumstances; they can rejoice when surrounded with
          enemies, and when their lives are imperilled. During my absence
          my feeling has been that God was with this people; I also felt
          that the faith of the Latter-day Saints was greatly exerted in my
          behalf, and that it was sustaining and strengthening me.
          In some respects my position as delegate from this Territory was
          not an enviable one, and from the time that I reached Washington
          until the close of Congress there was one paper, at least, which
          poured out unlimited abuse upon myself and upon my constituents.
          Scarcely a day passed that some falsehood was not circulated or
          some vile slander or charge published about the people in these
          mountains, or about myself. Appeals of every imaginable character
          were made to the Congress of the United States, that is, to the
          House particularly, to take instant measures to expel me, and
          when, as these writers thought, a disposition was manifested not
          to comply with their demands, recourse was had to the charge of
          bribery--that we were spending money, and that members of
          Congress were paid to prevent their action upon my case. In this
          respect the condition of a delegate might be considered an
          unenviable one, but I felt a strength, I felt a power, I had an
          influence, or thought I had, at least, that no other member of
          the House of Representatives possessed. For instance, the members
          of the House generally were constantly harassed with the thought
          as to what their constituents would think of them, how they would
          view their action, how they would like their votes, &c., whether
          they would be displeased with such and such a measure, &c. Their
          future election, they knew depended upon their having a popular
          record, and to secure this required considerable thought and
          ingenuity upon the part of many. I was divested of this fear, I
          had no thought as to what my constituents would think of me, it
          never cost me a single moment's reflection, because I knew that I
          had the entire confidence of the people whom I represented; and I
          knew that whatever I did, so long as I did the best I could, I
          should be sustained in doing it by you and by all the people
          throughout these valleys, and in this respect I had a strength
          which no other one had. I often told members, when it was
          convenient and appropriate to speak in this strain that I had the
          faith of the entire people, and that they were praying for me.
          This would amuse a good many, but I have never failed, during my
          absence, to convey, whenever I could, the idea that we were a
          people who believed in and prayed to God, and that we had faith
          in our prayers. One of the great lessons that we have to teach
          the world to-day is faith in God, and though a member of
          Congress, dealing with political questions and matters which are
          considered foreign to religion by the great majority of men, I
          have not thought that religion was like a Sunday garment, to be
          worn on Sunday in the meeting house, tabernacle, chapel or
          church, and to be laid aside again on Monday morning. I have
          never had that idea of religion, I do not have it now.
          There is at the present time an almost entire absence of faith in
          God among men. I have been struck with this more than any other
          feature that I have witnessed during my absence. Converse with
          well meaning, intelligent men, men of good moral character, and
          you will be surprised at the extent of the unbelief there is in
          the world. There seems to be an idea that God our Eternal Father
          resides in some remote place so far removed from us that he takes
          no special cognizance of us or of our actions, that he governs
          the universe and the affairs of men by great natural and
          unalterable laws, that there are no special providences in favor
          of men, but that man prospers according to his wisdom, strength
          and talent, and that weak men and weak people stand no chance in
          opposition to the strong; hence the remark was made to me, I may
          say, hundreds of times during my absence--"You people must
          conform to the ideas of the rest of the world, or you will go to
          the wall." "You people must abandon you strange ideas and your
          peculiar views, or you will inevitably be overthrown." On such
          occasions I would not fail to give the ideas that we believed in
          God, that we believed this was God's work, that God has sustained
          and delivered us in the past, that we were still willing to trust
          him for the future, and that he would provide a way of escape.
          But while men would listen patiently and kindly to such remarks,
          you could see incredulity on every lineament of their
          countenance, a sort of pitying incredulity, as though they looked
          upon you as very well-meaning, but in this respect a very much
          mistaken person. The idea that prevails is that God or Providence
          is on the side of the strongest artillery, and that if we are
          weak and are warred against we must go down because of our
          Of course, where this idea prevails there can be but little faith
          in God's special providences. If this were a correct idea, there
          would be little use in prayer, in supplicating God, in entreating
          him for his blessing and his power to be bestowed upon us. But we
          have proved the efficacy of prayer so often ourselves, that there
          is no need for us as a people to be fortified upon this point, or
          to have arguments urged upon us. My own life is full if
          incidents--as is the life, doubtless, of every individual present
          who has faith in God--which are evidence of his interposition in
          answer of prayer, and my feeling is that one of the great duties
          devolving upon us is to teach the world that there is a God, and
          that he has power to save to-day, as much as in ancient days,
          those who are willing to trust him. It is this peculiar feature
          that makes everything connected with this work so
          incomprehensible to men. Those of you who have kept posted in
          relation to affairs, know how wonderfully matters have been
          arranged for our good. When I look back at the seven or eight
          months that are past and see what has been done, I am amazed,
          knowing how thorough have been the measures and the efforts to
          strip us of every right and to bring us into bondage. No less
          than eight or nine bills were introduced into congress early in
          the session, for the express purpose of reaching the "Mormon"
          case. These bills were referred to various committees, and
          arguments had to be made upon them before these committees; but
          here was a determination on the part of a great many members to
          vote upon any bill, no matter what its features might be, that
          might be introduced into the House from a committee. You cannot
          judge, however, in every instance, of the private feelings of men
          by their votes. A great many members of Congress would rather not
          cast their votes against us if they could have their way; but the
          timidity of members upon the "Mormon" question is the strength of
          the enemies of the people of Utah, and they count upon that as a
          means of insuring the success of their schemes of villainy. They
          are well aware that there is a feeling of reluctance on the part
          of public men to place themselves on the record in favor of
          anything that would look like sustaining or giving countenance to
          what is called "Mormonism." Our enemies counted upon this last
          session. In the beginning of the session they depended upon that
          as the means by which they would prevent me from taking my seat
          in the House of Representatives. Disappointed in that, they then
          commenced operations before the committee on elections and, as
          you are doubtless well aware, did everything in their power to
          precipitate that question upon the House. I need not rehearse to
          you how these attempts have been overruled. To my mind the hand
          of God is as plainly manifest in all these circumstances as is
          this light, or these objects which I see before me in the light
          of this day.
          When the bills against Utah were introduced, they were referred,
          as I have said, to committees. They were principally copies of
          the bill that passed the Senate in the last session of the
          forty-second Congress, call the Frelinghuysen bill. One of these
          was introduced by the Chairman of the Committee on Territories
          and was the McKee bill. This bill was argued at great length
          before the Committee on Territories, and it was reported to the
          To the astonishment of its reputed author, a point of order was
          raised upon it for which he was not prepared, and, before he
          scarcely knew it, the bill was taken out of his hands and
          referred to the committee of the whole and virtually defeated for
          that session. Of course, our enemies were not suited with that
          arrangement, they wanted some other bill passed, and hoping that
          the Poland bill would be the least objectionable and would pass
          the easiest, they brought that forward and urged its passage
          before the Judiciary Committee, arguments were made for and
          against the bill, and finally, through laboring hard with
          prominent members of that committee a modification was obtained
          in one important section of the bill, namely, that referring to
          the selection of jurors. As the bill originally stood it
          possessed the same feature that all the rest did, giving the
          Judge of the District Court, his clerk and the U. S. Marshal, the
          right to select all our jurors. This section was fought
          earnestly, and finally Judge Poland was induced to modify it
          sufficiently to have three commissioners appointed, who should
          have the selection of jurors. Eventually another change was made
          in that section, and the feature that now stands in the law as it
          passed was introduced giving the right to select jurors to the
          Probate Judge of each county and the clerk of the District Court,
          each to select alternately a juror from lists already prepared. I
          felt that this, itself, was a very great triumph, because as the
          bill originally stood it virtually left us, our lives, our
          liberties and all our property, at the mercy of three individuals
          who, judging by past experience in this Territory, would pack
          juries upon us without any scruples; and I felt that it was a
          great advantage to us that the infamous raid had been made upon
          us two years ago by the Judge of this district and those
          associated with him, for it gave me an opportunity of setting
          forth what had been done in the past when there was no law to
          sustain such operation, and to argue what we might expect if
          there were a law to sustain them.
          When the Poland bill was brought before the House there seemed to
          be a forgetfulness on the part of its sponsor--not its author but
          its sponsor--Judge Poland, that there was a rule in operation
          requiring every bill that contemplated an appropriation from the
          federal treasury to be referred to the committee of the whole. He
          had forgotten the point that had been made on the McKee bill, and
          when his reputed bill was introduced that point was made again,
          and sustained by the Speaker. Judge Poland saw that he could not
          carry it over the decision of the Speaker and the decision of the
          best parliamentarians in the House and, to save his bill from
          being referred to the committee of the whole, he withdrew it. At
          this point a man who had been down there, very anxious to get
          legislation, and urging it with his might, met me on the floor of
          the House, and said--"Mr. Cannon, before you left Salt Lake you
          told me that God was on your side, and I'll be d--d if I don't
          begin to believe it." I told him He was, and was on the point of
          telling that he would be damned if he did not believe it, when we
          separated. For the moment, his fears being alive, I suppose he
          thought there was some power with us, as this was the second bill
          that had been so nearly killed for that session. Judge Poland
          succeeded afterwards in getting the privilege of reporting the
          bill to the House and having it there considered as in committee
          of the whole, and this saved the point of order.
          As I have told you, the strength of our enemies did not consist
          in the justice or rightfulness of their cause, it did not consist
          in the strength of their arguments; it did not consist, in fact,
          in anything of this character that could be brought before
          members; but their principal reliance was upon the circulation of
          abominable falsehoods and slanders and the unreasoning prejudices
          which existed against the people of this Territory, which made
          members timid in dealing fairly with our question. A people who
          profess the characteristics of many of the residents of this
          Territory, and who have shown such willingness to suffer all
          things for what they consider the right, have difficulty in
          comprehending how men in power can be timid where principle is
          involved. But the power of members of Congress is very ephemeral.
          The tenure of office of many is frequently based upon slight
          grounds. Some have to struggle hard to get to Congress, and they
          struggle still harder to keep there. Viewed from their stand
          point such reason in this wise; I follow politics as a
          profession; I expect to live by that profession; I reach Congress
          with difficulty for my district is closely contested. I must vote
          in a way not to lesson my majority in my district, or to decrease
          by influence. There is a prejudice against the Mormons, and if I
          seem to favor them, my opponents would use it against me on the
          stump in the next campaign, even if I should succeed in getting a
          nomination from the convention of my party.
          As you know, the Poland bill passed the House and was sent to the
          Senate. It was expected that it would pass the Senate almost
          instantaneously; that it would be referred, as a matter of form,
          to the Committee on the Judiciary and be instantly reported back
          for passage. But the members of the Judiciary Committee in the
          Senate, although the Frelinghuysen bill had passed during the
          previous Congress, were not disposed to pass this hastily
          through. There had been considerable said, a good many arguments
          made, and conversations held with Senators, and the true state of
          affairs, as far as possible, had been represented to them, and
          they had this fear--that this whole attempt at legislation was
          merely a pretext by which a raid could be made on the property of
          the "Mormons" in Utah Territory.
          There were two very powerful aids that I had in Washington. One,
          that idea to which I have just referred, that all this was a
          scheme on the part of certain interested parties for the purpose
          of getting up a raid under cover of polygamy and "Mormonism" to
          rob the people of their hard-earned possessions. Many Senators
          and members had been to Utah and were aware of the increased
          value of property through the discovery of mines. They had no
          faith in carpet-baggers, hence there was a reluctance on the part
          of considerate men to lend themselves to anything like a scheme
          of this character.
          The other great aid I had were the looks of the men who were
          urging the legislation. All I had to do was to point to these men
          and ask the Senators and members how they would like to have
          power put in the hands of such persons if they resided in Utah
          Territory? The argument was a conclusive one if they had the
          opportunity of seeing the persons who were urging legislation at
          that time. I do not exaggerate when I say that those who went
          down there to contest my seat and urge legislation were the best
          aids that could have been furnished me. Some have thought I ought
          to have had some help, but I tell you truly that they were the
          best helps that could be sent. I have been asked repeatedly what
          we paid one of them at least to be there. The first time the
          question was put to me I was a little surprised at it, and could
          not help expression my surprise, not understanding its drift. I
          said--"We pay him nothing, what do you mean?" "Well," said the
          gentleman who asked the question, "if you do not pay him you
          certainly can afford to pay him to keep him here." These were
          strong reasons on our side, and they contributed materially to
          help our cause.
          When the bill, as I have said, came from the Judiciary Committee
          to the Senate, it came in its original form except the striking
          out of one section which extended the common law over this
          Territory. But there was a disposition to so modify the bill that
          it could not be used in the way that it was designed by its
          originators, and you know how it has been pruned. To me, as I
          have said respecting this other matter, so I can say concerning
          it, that the hand of God was very visible to me, and I felt that
          he was laboring on our side, and that he would help us and
          deliver us as he had delivered others in other times and in past
          ages; and the Lord did soften the hearts of men, cause them to
          feel favorable to us and to feel favorably disposed to our cause.
          It has been said as an explanation of this, so I have understood,
          that we have used money at Washington to defeat legislation. I
          have not seen these statements myself, for I made it a point
          never to read books or papers which vilify this people. I really
          have too little time to read the works and papers which are
          instructive and pleasant to me, and with which I ought to be
          familiar, to spend one moment of time reading abusive, lying and
          slanderous writings concerning this people or myself. While I was
          absent, there was a paper published in Washington that had almost
          daily, as I have remarked, articles against you and myself. I
          made it a point never to read one of them. I did not want to be
          disturbed in my feelings. "Where ignorance is bliss," the poet
          says, "'tis folly to be wise." I thought the scheme was a
          blackmailing one; I knew the influences which were put in
          operation to keep up this abuse and I was determined it should
          not annoy me. Whenever the use of money has been alluded to in
          the hearing of President Young he has stated, emphatically, that
          so far as he was concerned he would not spend one cent of money
          to preserve our rights, or to obtain extended liberties for us as
          a people. This has been his emphatic declaration, his expressed
          determination. His views on this subject have been accepted as
          every way correct.
          I want to say to you here, to-day, my brethren and sister, that
          not one cent of money has been spent with any man for the purpose
          of influencing him. I believe my word can be relied upon by this
          people; you have known me all my life, and when I say this you
          can put implicit and perfect reliance in what I say. We have had
          no aid of this kind, we have used no means of this character, we
          have had no lobbyist. That which has been done has been fairly
          and above board, and it has been the blessing of God upon us in
          answer to the united faith and prayers of this people that has
          produced the results that we have witnessed. I am thankful that
          we have been enabled to take this course and that we can trust in
          God and rely upon him, for he will save to the very uttermost.
          I recollect writing home a letter some weeks ago, some weeks in
          fact before the adjournment, in which I said that so far as the
          sight of the eye, the hearing of the ear, and natural judgment
          were concerned men might be justified in thinking there would be
          legislation that would be very severe, and that I would lose my
          seat. And yet I can truly say that from the day of my election up
          to the time that I left Washington I never had a single doubt,
          not a shadow of a doubt as to my keeping my seat--it never cost
          me one moment's thought. I knew when I left here that I would be
          admitted to my seat; I knew when the attempt was made to expel me
          that it would be unsuccessful; I knew farther, that every attempt
          to get legislation such as was contemplated would be defeated,
          and if a bill did pass it would be in a comparatively mild form.
          Of course, having these ideas, I have felt, as I stated in the
          commencement of my remarks, very happy. I have had joy all the
          time, I have had peace all the time, and I have had good cause to
          be thankful to God our heavenly Father for his blessings upon me.
          That I was not expelled from my seat, however, was not due to the
          absence of effort on the part of the person who wanted it. It was
          really amusing to hear the pathetic manner in which the poor
          creature and his confederates alluded to the technical and legal
          reply which I made, (and which was published in this city,) to
          his charges against me in his notice of contest for the place of
          delegate. He had piled charge upon charge against me, nothing
          being too false vile or malignant to embody in these accusations,
          and because I acknowledged nothing, but threw the onus of the
          proof upon him, he murmured considerably. It would doubtless have
          been very gratifying to him to have had his case completed for
          him. As it was, recourse was had to the most despicable methods
          to obtain such evidence as was thought necessary. Spies prayed
          into my domestic affairs, and from them and apostates cooked
          affidavits were obtained with which it was hoped the desired end
          would be achieved. If vile slanders, base falsehoods, false
          affidavits, or atrocious attacks could have had the desired
          effect I would not have kept my seat in Congress. If grossly
          libelous newspaper articles, if shameless and indecent lectures,
          if frantic appeals to popular prejudice, or the secret
          circulation of documents signed by perjured affiant could have
          influenced congress to take hasty and ill-considered action, the
          place of delegate from Utah might have been declared vacant. My
          opponents attacked me for being a "Mormon" of the most ultra and
          pronounced type; their great efforts were to prove that in the
          enunciation and practice of every feature of my religion I was
          bold though shrewd and not a whit behind the foremost, and
          because of this should not have a seat in Congress. This
          endorsement, if it had been worth anything, would have pleased
          me. But it did not always suit to give me this character. For
          circulation here, another plan was adopted. I was accused of not
          standing up to my principles. This charge was false but did not
          displease me, any more than the others pleased me. I am thankful
          to say that I have learned to view all such charges with complete
          indifference. Conscious of the propriety of my own course and
          that I had the confidence of my constituents, my enemies' attacks
          gave me no concern. Indeed, I accepted them as compliments. I was
          quite willing to be investigated. I had tried to live so that I
          had no fear of a microscopic investigation of the acts of my
          life. At the same time I never conceded that Congress had the
          right to investigate my domestic affairs, I have no idea that I
          shall ever be convinced that it has that right.
          So far as my personal treatment has been concerned, I have been
          treated with respect and consideration. A few individuals, a few
          members, have sought to do us injury; a few men can make a great
          disturbance on a question upon which men are so tender as this
          question of "Mormonism." But by the great majority, by
          ninety-nine hundredths of the men with whom I have been brought
          in contact, as members of the House, as senators, as heads of
          departments, I could not ask any better treatment then I have
          received, I could not expect it. I have endeavored to deport
          myself as a gentleman in all the relations of life, to treat
          everybody with the consideration and respect that were due to
          them, and I have, in return, been treated in the same manner. I
          take pleasure in bearing this testimony, because one might
          imagine, from reports that have reached here, that I have been in
          a constant war and difficulty. It has been a constant war, but it
          has been a war that has been confined to fighting and
          counteracting the lies, the machinations, the slanders and the
          miserable schemes of those who have been plotting against us. And
          I wish to bear testimony to you this afternoon, that if you will
          put your trust in God he will never desert you. I never felt for
          a moment concerned about our affairs but once, and that was when
          I heard of the divisions in our elections here; that gave me
          concern. If these Latter-day Saints are only united, if they will
          keep the commandments of God and do his will, let me say to you
          that there is no power on earth or in hell that can injure us or
          retard the onward progress of this work. I know this as well as I
          know I stand here. But you be divided, you lose your faith, you
          array yourselves one against another, and then where is your
          strength? You are no better than any other people, and God will
          visit you with scourges and with disaster, and you will be
          punished and our enemies will have power over you. I hear of men
          being in doubt concerning their faith in the Gospel of the Lord
          Jesus Christ. I am astonished at it. It seems to me that every
          evidence that is necessary to convince people of the divinity of
          this work, people who examine it carefully and prayerfully, had
          been given unto us as a people.
          I thought I knew something, before I left here, concerning the
          power of God; I thought I knew something of the providences of
          God our heavenly Father; but I never had such an experience in my
          life as I have had while I have been absent. I know that God is
          with this people. I know that God has chosen Brigham Young to be
          his servant, and to preside over his Church on the earth. I know
          this as well as I know that I live, and I might as well doubt my
          own existence, doubt the existence of the heavens above my head,
          or the earth on which I stand, as to doubt this, and I know that
          those who follow his counsel will be blessed and will be
          delivered, while those who reject his counsel will have to suffer
          This may sound strange that a man should have this power given to
          him in these days, but it is consistent with the plan of
          salvation as revealed in ancient days. Recollect the power that
          Jesus gave to Peter--that he should bind on earth and it should
          be bound in heaven, and that he should loose on earth and it
          should be loosed in heaven. What great power this was to give to
          one man. Jesus said to him, "And I will give unto thee the key of
          the kingdom of heaven, and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth
          shall be bound in heaven and whatsoever thou shall loose on earth
          shall be loosed in heaven.
          When God chooses a man to be his servant, he expects all his
          children to honor that man when they become acquainted with the
          character of his mission, and those who honor him He will honor,
          and they who despise him He will despise, and I know that the
          Latter-day Saints have prospered, it has been the experience of
          my entire life, from my boyhood up to this day, in obeying the
          counsel of God's servant. During the days of Joseph, when the
          Latter-day Saints obeyed his counsel they were prospered; and
          since his death, for thirty years now, when they have obeyed the
          counsel of Brigham they have been blessed and prospered. And
          there is the evidence, which I consider one of the greatest
          evidences that we can have--whenever we do that which is required
          of us we have peace in our hearts, and when we oppose it we are
          disturbed in our spirits. I look upon this as one of the best
          guides to judge of the character of a spirit by which we may be
          assailed, or which may present itself for admission to our
          hearts. Whenever a spirit presents itself that produces
          disturbance of feeling, agitation, pain, darkness or doubt, we
          can know if we will judge as we should do, that it is not of God;
          but a spirit that produces peace, a spirit that produces joy,
          light and happiness, comes form God, and as a people we should be
          able to judge between these two classes of influences.
          I said, in the commencement, that it is the privilege, in my
          opinion, of every man, and every human being on the face of the
          earth to be happy, if he will seek happiness in the right
          direction. The heathen who lives up to the light God has given
          him can be a happy man. The idolater, no matter what his
          condition or belief, if he lives up to the light God has given
          him, can be happy if he will observe those laws which God has
          made plain unto all of us. Now my brethren and sisters, there are
          lying spirits gone forth in the world who seek to deceive. The
          spirit of falsehood reigns to-day in the midst of the earth. Men
          delight in slander and in that which is false. You have proved
          this sufficiently, and if you are not careful you will be
          assailed by this spirit and partake of it before you are aware of
          it. How can you know a good spirit from a bad spirit? By the
          effect it produces upon your minds. I know that there are some
          who think that unless a man doubts he cannot acquire knowledge.
          This to me is great folly. I do not think it at all necessary to
          doubt or to hold controversies with the devil in order to acquire
          knowledge. I never saw a man who pursued that course who was not
          disturbed in his mind and darkened in his understanding. Seek for
          that which produces a good effect upon your minds; if we follow
          that it will bring us back to God. We need never be deceived by
          any spirit or influence, and we may always know the truth when we
          hear it. We have a guide within ourselves, which all of us carry,
          and that is the power to detect truth from error, right from
          wrong, good from evil, the spirit of light form the spirit of
          darkness. I want no spirit within me that produces any unhappy
          feeling. I want no spirit to enter into my heart that produces
          darkness and doubt. I want a spirit that produces peace and joy,
          and that will cause me to rejoice in the midst of my enemies and
          when threatened by danger; or if I have to walk that narrow and
          dreadful path that leads to death because of my faith, or any
          other terrible consequence, that I can walk it and have the
          Spirit of God, the spirit of peace, joy and resignation therein,
          without doubt or darkness assailing me. That is the spirit that
          we as a people should seek for. And when you are disturbed in
          your feelings and assailed with doubt and do not feel happy,
          withdraw to your secret chamber, and bow yourselves down before
          your God and entreat him, in the name of Jesus, to give you his
          Spirit, and do not leave your chamber until you are, as it were,
          baptized in the Spirit of God and full of peace and joy, all your
          cares and troubles dissipated and dismissed. This is the course
          we should take as Latter-day Saints, and this will be far more
          profitable to us than anything else we can do during that period.
          There is nothing like communion with the Holy Spirit, there is no
          blessing to equal it. I have proved it abundantly during my
          absence, and I rejoice that I can bear this testimony to you
          I expect it sounds strange for a man who had been occupied as I
          have been to talk in this strain; but there is nothing of greater
          importance to me, according to my understanding, than the
          salvation of the human family, temporally and spiritually, in the
          kingdom of God our heavenly father; nothing of greater importance
          than teaching men and women how to live so as to be always in the
          enjoyment of light and wisdom and the peaceful Spirit of God our
          heavenly Father.
          That God may bless you, that God may preserve you, that God may
          unite your hearts and make you one, and make you a people who
          shall prove to the inhabitants of the earth that God still lives
          and that he is unchanged, that he is the same today that he was
          yesterday and that he will be the same forever, is my prayer in
          the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / John
          Taylor, July 19, 1874
                             John Taylor, July 19, 1874
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER JOHN TAYLOR,
             Delivered at the Funeral Services of Elder Thomas Williams,
               in the Fourteenth Ward Assembly Rooms, Salt Lake City,
                           Sunday Morning, July 19, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          We are met this morning to attend to one of those ceremonies that
          are intimately connected with human existence. People generally
          feel reflective on sorrowful occasions like the present, and
          there is some thing about the manner in which this, our beloved
          brother, was taken from us, that rather tends to increase this
          feeling of commiseration, not for the departed, but for his
          family, friends and associates. Taken away in the bloom of life
          and health, without a moment's warning, snatched off in the face
          of his family and ushered, as it were, immediately from this
          world into another state of existence, it produces feelings that
          are more easily imagined than described. However, my ideas in
          relation to this matter are that so long as we are prepared to
          live or to die, so long as we are fulfilling the various
          obligations, duties and responsibilities that devolve upon us, it
          is a matter of very little importance how or in what manner we
          leave this world and go into another. It is appointed for man
          once to die, and we can not evade the fact which fate has
          decreed. No persons have yet been able to avoid the operations
          and summons of the grim monster whenever his call has been made.
          And when we reflect upon the position that we occupy upon the
          earth it is analogous, in this respect, to that of myriads of
          human beings who have existed before. In various parts of the
          world there have been a variety of opinions about the
          resurrection and about the state of man after death; but there
          has been very little difference of opinion about death itself.
          The myriads of human beings who have lived upon this earth have
          all gone in the same way, that is more or less. Some have died
          peaceably and quietly in their beds; others have been submerged
          in the ocean, and drowned far from friends and homes, some in the
          violent struggles of the battle-field, and some have departed
          this life after enduring the agony and pain of lingering disease.
          There are phases associated with human existence and the
          departure of humanity from this world that are more pleasant than
          others, and we should like generally, if we could have our way,
          to make all preparations, have everything arranged, and to leave
          this world, bidding adieu to our friends and companions as
          quietly and easily as practicable. We should all like this if we
          could have our own way about it. But we do not have our choice.
          "God moves in a mysterious way," we are told, and the
          dispensations of Providence are inscrutable. Nor is it a matter
          of very much moment, according to my ideas, how, or in what way,
          we leave this world; the great object is and the great questions
          for us to solve are, are we prepared? Have we formed a union with
          God our heavenly Father? Have we obtained the forgiveness of our
          sins? Are we living our religion? Are we keeping the commandments
          of God? Have we made arrangements for our everlasting
          associations with beings in the eternal worlds? If we have, if
          this is our position, it matters but little how or when we leave
          this world, that must be left for the Almighty to regulate and to
          decide upon.
          God, in his eternal decrees, has ordained that all men must die,
          but as to the mode and manner of our exit, as I said before, it
          matters very little. As part of the household and family of God,
          as beings associated with eternity as well as time, it behooves
          us to reflect, and that calmly and deliberately, upon our present
          position, and our relationship and standing before God our
          heavenly Father. These are important questions for us to solve,
          and if we can solve them satisfactorily, then all is right.
               These events that are continually transpiring around and
          among us convince us of the fallacy of all earthly enjoyments as
          associated merely with this life. No matter what our
          acquirements--no matter what our talents or abilities, no matter
          what our wealth, position or circumstances in life, we all have
          to submit to the same grim monster, hence the question naturally
          comes to our minds, why are we thus situated? We seem attached,
          more or less, to this world. We are struggling, and striving, and
          grappling and grasping to possess the things of this world. Of
          what use are they now to this brother whose lifeless remains lie
          before us? And yet our whole lives, and thoughts, and energy, and
          talent are generally bent on their acquisition. In a short time,
          the body now lying here, with whose face we have been familiar
          and whose company we have enjoyed, will be lying up there,
          enclosed in mother earth. Dust to dust, ashes to ashes, and worms
          preying upon his system, and his spirit gone into another state
          of existence. That which we see here to-day, will be our case in
          a short time. Myriads who have lived before us have gone the same
          way. Where are the statesmen, warriors, orators, princes,
          potentates, emperors, philosophers, and great men whose names are
          found upon the pages of history? They have gone! gone! gone! and
          we are all sliding down the plane of time and hurrying into
          eternity. This is the position of all men that ever have lived on
          the face of the earth. Is this our abiding place then? Is this
          the land of our immortal, eternal inheritance? Not until a change
          takes place. And what of the affairs of the earth--the baubles,
          tinsel, glitter and show, the empty name and appearance of
          earthly things? Why, just as a great and very sensible man
          expressed himself: Said he, "When I am gone you will build a
          monument over me, and you will write upon it--
          "Here lies the great;--
          but if I could rise from the tomb, and could again speak, I would
          "False marble, where?
                 Nothing but poor and sordid dust lies there!"
          So it will be with all of us, with me with you, we shall soon all
          be in that position. I do not care what our hopes, aspirations or
          position in life may be, we have all got to go through the dark
          valley of the shadow of death. We have all got to appear before
          the tribunal of a just God to give an account of the deeds done
          in the body, whether those deeds have been good or evil.
          And in the various changes that have taken place, in the cycles
          of time as they have rolled forward, and as they will continue to
          take place, what of the earth, what of the men who have lived and
          died and live again, and what of us? What are our position, ideas
          and prospects? We believe that God has spoken; we believe that
          light has emanated from the eternal inheritance. From this the
          Gospel has been preached; for this the Elders of the Church and
          kingdom of God have gone abroad; for this we have gathered from
          distant lands; for this we build our Temples and our Tabernacles;
          for this we preach and pray daily that God may inspire our hearts
          with the spirit of revelation that emanates from him, and that
          the Holy Ghost, the Spirit of truth, may rest upon and dwell
          within us, that when we get through with this time, we may be
          prepared, with our progenitors and our posterity, to inherit an
          eternal exaltation in the celestial kingdom of our God.
          And what is anything without this? Do I mourn over that man? No,
          I do not, I feel sorry for his family, I do not mourn over him,
          not a particle. I would not shed a tear over him. He was a good
          man, a man who feared God, loved his religion, kept the
          commandments of God and walked humbly before him; he was a man
          who was honored and respected by the good, respected and honored
          of God and of holy angels, and it is all right with him. Do I
          mourn that he is taken away? No, we would like to have our good
          men stay among us, but perhaps they have something to do in
          another sphere. Perhaps the services of brother Williams are
          required somewhere else. There are other positions for men to
          occupy besides this earth. We had an existence before we came
          here. We came here to do a certain work. He has done his and
          gone. Perhaps God required him and has taken him away. All right,
          we will say, it is the Lord, let him do what seems him good.
          In regard to ourselves, that is another thing that we have
          individually and personally to do with. It is all right with him,
          how is it with us? I talk to the living, to those who are in
          existence, who have their volition, who have the power of action
          and their reasoning faculties, and I say unto them, look where
          you will be in a short time, and ask yourselves are you prepared,
          like him, to meet your God, and to have an inheritance in the
          celestial kingdom of God? These are the questions that I would
          ask, and I would say that no matter what your position, what your
          wealth, what your prospects or ideas pertaining to this world,
          they are none of them worth anything except sanctified by God and
          appropriated for the building up or his kingdom and the
          establishment of righteousness upon the earth.
          But the question is, are we the friends of God? Is God our
          friend? Are we living and walking in the light of his
          countenance? Do we feel that our spirits, feelings and
          consciences are right before him, that we have consciences void
          of offence towards God and towards man? These are some of the
          thoughts and reflections that we have to do with, and it is for
          us to think seriously, calmly and deliberately upon these things,
          and to act as wise, prudent, intelligent beings, that we may;
          keep the commandments of God, live our religion and obtain an
          inheritance in the celestial kingdom of God when we shall have
          got through with the affairs of time, with which we are
          May God help us to be faithful and keep his commandments, in the
          name of Jesus, Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / George
          Q. Cannon, July 19, 1874
                           George Q. Cannon, July 19, 1874
                         DISCOURSE BY ELDER GEORGE Q. CANNON,
             Delivered at the Funeral Services of Elder Thomas Williams,
               in the Fourteenth Ward Assembly Rooms, Salt Lake City,
                           Sunday Morning, July 19, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          While Elder Taylor was speaking of the future condition of the
          departed, the words of a writer in the Book of Mormon came to my
          mind, and I think that, probably, reading it will be as
          appropriate on the present occasion, to refresh the minds of the
          Saints in relation to their faith, and if there should be
          strangers present, it will give them an idea of the faith of the
          Latter-day Saints, in relation to the resurrection. I think, I
          say, it would be as appropriate as anything I could say. The are
          the words of Jacob, the brother of Nephi, and are recorded in the
          second book of Nephi and sixth chapter. Speaking to a people who
          were there, Jacob says--
          "Behold, my beloved brethren, I speak unto you these things that
          ye may rejoice, and lift up your heads forever, because of the
          blessings which the Lord God shall bestow upon your children. For
          I know that ye have searched much, many of you, to know of things
          to come; wherefore I know that ye know that our flesh must waste
          away and die; nevertheless, in our bodies we shall see God. Yea,
          I know that ye know, that in the body he shall show himself unto
          those at Jerusalem, from whence we came; for it is expedient that
          it should be among them; for it behoveth the great Creator that
          he suffereth himself to become subject unto man in the flesh, and
          die for all men, that all men might become subject unto him. For
          as death hath passed upon all men, to fulfill the merciful plan
          of the great Creator, there must needs be a power of
          resurrection, and the resurrection must needs come unto man by
          reason of the fall; and the fall came by reason of transgression;
          and because man became fallen, the were cut off from the presence
          of the Lord; wherefore it must needs be an infinite atonement;
          save it should be an infinite atonement, this corruption could
          not put on incorruption. Wherefore, the first judgment which came
          upon man, must needs have remained to an endless duration. And if
          so, this flesh must have laid down to rot and to crumble to its
          mother earth, to rise no more.
          "O the wisdom of God! his mercy and grace! For behold, if the
          flesh should rise no more, our spirits must become subject to
          that angel who fell from before the presence of the eternal God,
          and became the devil, to rise no more. And our spirits must have
          become like unto him and we become devils, and angels to a devil,
          to be shut out from the presence of our God, and to remain with
          the father of lies, in misery, like unto himself; yea, to that
          being who beguiled our first parents: who transformeth himself
          nigh unto an angel of light, and stirreth up the children of men
          unto secret combinations of murder, and all manner of secret
          works of darkness.
          "O how great the goodness of our God, who prepareth a way for our
          escape from the grasp of this awful monster; yea; that monster,
          death and hell, which I call the death of the body, and also the
          death of the spirit. And because of the way of the deliverance of
          our God, the Holy One of Israel, this death of which I have
          spoken, which is the temporal shall deliver up its dead; which
          death is the grave. And this death of which I have spoken, which
          is the spiritual death, shall deliver up its dead; which
          spiritual death is hell; wherefore, death and hell must deliver
          up their dead, and hell must deliver up its captive spirits, and
          the grave must deliver up its captive bodies, and the bodies and
          spirits of men will be restored one to the other; and it is by
          the power of the Holy One of Israel.
          "O how great the plan of our God! For on the other hand, the
          paradise of God must deliver up the spirits of the righteous, and
          the grave deliver up the body of the righteous; and the spirit
          and the body is restored to itself again, and all men become
          incorruptible, and immortal, and they are living souls, having a
          perfect knowledge like unto us in the flesh; save it be that our
          knowledge shall be perfect; wherefore, we shall have a perfect
          knowledge of all our guilt, and our uncleanness, and our
          nakedness; and the righteous shall have a perfect knowledge of
          their enjoyment, and their righteousness, being clothed with
          purity, yea, even with the robe of righteousness.
          "And it shall come to pass, that when all men shall have passed
          from this first death unto life, insomuch as they have become
          immortal, they must appear before the judgment seat of the Holy
          One of Israel; and then cometh the judgment, and then must they
          be judged according to the holy judgment of God. And assuredly,
          as the Lord liveth, for the Lord God hath spoken it, and it is
          his eternal word, which cannot pass away, that they who are
          righteous, shall be righteous still, and they who are filthy,
          shall be filthy still, wherefore, they who are filthy, are the
          devil and his angels; and they shall go away into everlasting
          fire, prepared for them; and their torment is as a lake of fire,
          and brimstone, whose flame ascendeth up for ever and ever, and
          has no end.
          "O the greatness and the justness of our God! For he executeth
          all his words, and they have gone forth out of his mouth, and his
          law must be fulfilled. But, behold, the righteous, the Saints of
          the Holy One of Israel, they who have believed in the Holy One of
          Israel, the who have endured the crosses of the world, and
          despised the shame of it; they shall inherit the kingdom of God,
          which was prepared for them from the foundation of the world, and
          their joy shall be full forever.
          "O the greatness of the mercy of our God; the Holy One of Israel!
          For he delivereth his Saints from that awful monster the devil,
          and death, and hell, and that lake of fire and brimstone, which
          is endless torment.
          "O how great the holiness of our God! For he knoweth all things,
          and there is not anything, save he knows it. And he cometh into
          the world that he may save all men, if they will hearken unto his
          voice; for behold, he suffereth the pains of all men; yea, the
          pains of every living creature, both men and women, and children,
          who belong to the family of Adam. And he suffereth this, that the
          resurrection might pass upon all men, that all might stand before
          him at the great and judgment day. And he commandeth all men that
          they must repent, and be baptized in his name, having perfect
          faith in the Holy One of Israel; or they cannot be saved in the
          kingdom of God. And if they will not repent and believe in his
          name, and be baptized in his name, and endure to the end, they
          must be damned; for the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel, has
          spoken it; wherefore he has given a law; and where there is no
          law given, there is no punishment; and where there is no
          punishment, there is no condemnation; and where there is no
          condemnation, the mercies of the Holy One of Israel have claim
          upon them, because of the atonement; for they are delivered by
          the power of him; for the atonement satisfieth the demands of his
          justice upon all those who have not the law given to them, that
          they are delivered from that awful monster death and hell, and
          the devil, and the lake of fire and brimstone, which is endless
          torment; and they are restored to that God who gave them breath,
          which is the Holy One of Israel."
          There is much more in this chapter of a similar character, very
          instructive to those who read and have faith to believe the
          testimony of this man.
          In speaking to you, my brethren and sisters, who are familiar
          with the life of him whose remains are in out midst this morning,
          I need not say to you scarcely what our views and hopes are
          concerning him. We know when a man dies, inasmuch as he dies
          faithful to the truth, having kept the commandments of God and
          obeyed the ordinances of the house of God as far as they have
          been revealed and as he has had an opportunity, that he is
          secure, that his future is assured. He goes, as we are taught, to
          the Paradise of God, there to await the morning of the first
          resurrection. We know that his body will be called forth from the
          dust and from the tomb, and that his spirit will re-animate it,
          and he enter upon that glorious condition of existence concerning
          which so many promises have been made. In this respect the faith
          of the Latter-day Saints is not a chimera, it is something
          While I sat here and listened to the words of our brother the
          reflection came across my mind--how often we are called upon to
          participate in sad scenes like the present, and yet throughout
          all this Territory, among all the Latter-day Saints, there is
          this peculiarity, which was not witnessed in the case of our
          brother because of the suddenness of his taking off; but I have
          never yet found, in any instance where people have been summoned
          hence by death, that there were death and sorrow, and feelings of
          pain and anguish, and dread concerning the future as I have
          witnessed elsewhere. In the early days of this Church God
          promised unto the Latter-day Saints that their deaths should be
          peaceful, and that the dread of death should be taken away from
          them, and after forty-four years' experience we, today, and in
          all the years that are passed, have realized the truth of this
          There is something tangible about the faith which God has
          revealed. If I go forth believing in the Lord Jesus Christ, and
          am baptized for the remission of my sins, and receive the Holy
          Ghost, I know that I have done that which God requires at my
          hands, and if I should die at such a time what have I to fear? If
          the Holy Ghost has descended upon me it is a witness and evidence
          to me that I have received a remission of my sins, and that the
          promise of God has been fulfilled to me, and that the man who
          administered that holy ordinance to me was an authorized servant
          of Jesus Christ.
          That was the case with brother Williams. His testimonies were of
          the most remarkable character. I have heard him speak about the
          evidences of its truthfulness he had when he joined this Church,
          and I have been almost overpowered with joy that I lived in a day
          and age of the world when God revealed his mind and will unto man
          as he did in ancient day. A more powerful testimony, probably,
          could not be heard than has been borne so repeatedly by our
          deceased brother. And then what? Why the Spirit of God rested
          upon him and impelled him to leave his friends and his former
          home and associations and gather with the Saints. Did he do this
          because some "Mormon" Elder told him it was right to do it? No,
          he did this because the Spirit and power of God rested upon him
          and impelled him to do it. He was filled with joy and peace in
          obeying this commandment of God, and it was so after he came here
          in all the works that devolved upon him. Only the day before he
          died we had a long conversation about these things together, and
          I trust I shall never forget the spirit that rested upon him and
          myself while talking. Speaking about the unfaithfulness of men,
          he did not say in these exact words, but he conveyed the idea to
          me that he would rather die, rather lay down his life than prove
          recreant to the principles of the Gospel which he had espoused,
          he valued them so highly, more than life and everything else on
          the face of the earth. He has done all that he could do. That
          power which God promised, or which Jesus rather gave unto Peter,
          when he said that he should have the power to bind on earth and
          it should be bound in heaven, and the power to loose on earth and
          it should be loosed in heaven, has been exercised in behalf of
          our deceased brother. He took a wife and she was sealed to him by
          the power of the holy Priesthood, and he entered into this holy
          ordinance and obeyed celestial marriage as it was revealed to him
          in the fullness of his faith, although it was a trial to him. But
          he was impelled to do so by he power which rested down upon him,
          and he knew he did that which was right. He went forward in
          obedience to the commandments, putting his trust in God, and I
          know, as he knew and still knows, though gone behind the vail,
          that he has secured to himself, so far as his own works could
          secure, through the grace and atonement of Jesus Christ, his
          eternal exaltation in the presence of God our heavenly Father.
          It is not a strong assurance or hope that the Latter-day Saints
          have, that they will receive these blessings in the eternal
          worlds; but when the promise is sealed upon their heads that they
          shall come forth in the morning of the first resurrection and be
          crowned with glory, immortality and eternal lives, there is a
          testimony from God, our eternal Father in the heavens above,
          which rests down upon them and confirms the truth of these words
          upon the soul of a faithful man or woman, and they know, when
          words are pronounced upon them by a man who has the authority,
          sealing upon them blessings, keys, thrones, principalities,
          powers and exaltations in the eternal kingdoms of God our Father,
          I say they know, by the testimony of the Spirit of God which
          rests down upon them at such times, that these words are not the
          words of men, but that they are the words of the Spirit of God
          inspiring that man, and that God takes a record of that ordinance
          in the heavens, and that it is sealed upon them and upon their
          children, and that they will actually come forth in the morning
          of the first resurrection, according to the promise, hence, there
          is no fear of death in the minds of the Latter-day Saints. If the
          stake was standing before us, prepared for our execution--if we
          had that faith that we should have, and which animated the Saints
          of God in ancient days, we would walk as calmly to that stake and
          be bound to it as we would walk to eat a meal of victuals,
          knowing that God, our heavenly Father, will bestow all the
          blessings that have been sealed upon us.
          This was the faith which animated the ancients and sustained them
          in the midst of persecutions, and this is the faith that we
          should cherish and cultivate as a people and as individuals. Woe
          to the man who has lost that faith! Dreadful is his condition if
          he has not that faith living within him. Woe to that man, for his
          condition is far worse than his first condition, that is before
          he had these blessings sealed upon him.
          My associations with our brother who has gone have been of the
          most tender character. I have known him as I have known a
          brother. Our associations have been very intimate from the day I
          first made his acquaintance, on the Missouri river, in 1860,
          until the present time. I have watched his course, and have been
          pleased with his faithfulness. A more amiable, more kind-spirited
          or more loving man I scarcely ever met. I do not know that I ever
          met one more so. He has been beloved by all who have known him. A
          modest unobtrusive man, never setting himself forward, but
          faithful and diligent, performing the labors assigned to him
          without any parade but with the greatest devotion and zeal.
          That God may bless his wives and his children, and pour out upon
          them the spirit of consolation, that he may preserve his little
          ones, that they may grow up in the truth, and tread the straight
          and narrow path which he has trodden to the end, and like him be
          crowned with glory, is my prayer in the name of Jesus Christ.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 /
          Brigham Young, July 19, 1874
                            Brigham Young, July 19, 1874
             Delivered at the Funeral Services of Elder Thomas Williams,
               in the Fourteenth Ward Assembly Rooms, Salt Lake City,
                           Sunday Morning, July 19, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                            PEOPLED IN FUTURE EXISTENCE.
          I do not wish to detain the congregation, for I realize that it
          very warm and uncomfortable; but on this occasion I feel to offer
          a few reflections, and pray that they may be instructive to the
          living, and encourage us in the faith of the holy Gospel,
          strengthen us in the little faith that we now possess, and open
          up to our minds the future prospects and blessings that the Lord
          has in reserve for the faithful.
          We call this a solemn occasion, for we have met together to pay
          our last respects to one who has lived with us, and with whom we
          have associated, and we delight to show our respect to the mortal
          remains of those who, in life, have been near and dear to us. But
          for me to address a lifeless lump of clay would be useless, while
          to address the living, who have ears to hear and hearts to
          understand, may be profitable. I requested the brethren to speak
          who have already addressed you, and there are more here who would
          like to speak on the present occasion.
          The testimony that has been borne concerning the character of our
          beloved brother, whose body is now a lifeless mass of clay before
          us, is true, and more we can say than what has been said.
          The scene that we are now called to witness is painful to near
          and dear friends--it is a scene calculated to wring the very
          heart--the inmost heart. Such scenes are always painful, still we
          witness them day by day, and when we contemplate the vast number
          of souls that come into existence and inhabit bodies here on this
          earth, and the vast number that are departing, almost every
          moment, it is nothing strange or new. Except this plant die it
          cannot be quickened; except this mortality is put off it can not
          put on immortality; except this body that we have received from
          the earth returns to mother earth, it can not be brought forth in
          the morning of the resurrection. This we know and understand; yet
          how strange it is, and yet we may say it is not strange, that the
          living, with all that they witness concerning the departure of
          the living to another state of existence, how few there are who
          profit by it, how few there are who seek unto God for wisdom,
          knowledge and understanding to enable them to acquit themselves
          well here preparatory to this change. There are some who do, but
          very few, and though we mourn at the loss of our friends, when
          our natural feelings have passed away, and our hearts have ceased
          to mourn, cheerfulness takes the place of these mournful
          feelings, and we think no more of it. This is the common
          condition of the children of men, those who profess to be
          Christians, and to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ as the Savior
          of the world. They have made many inquiries with regard to this
          passing from one state of existence to another. It seems to be a
          great mystery to them. A great deal has been said and a great
          deal has been written, and there have been many reflections--more
          than has been spoken or written, and yet it is one eternal
          mystery to the world. Why? Because they have not eyes to see, nor
          ears to hear, and they do not understand the providences of God;
          and if they read the word of the Lord--the revelations that he
          has given concerning the living and the dead--they do not
          understand them, and so the world is left in darkness, to grope
          their way like the blind man by the wall. Thus it is with the
          children of men, taking the whole of the Christian world.
          It is true the Latter-day Saints have received a little
          more--they have received something beyond the imagination of the
          heart. We have facts before us, we have experience that is
          satisfactory, and we can rejoice in the hope that God has given
          us. But if we will be prepared, as this our beloved brother was
          prepared, to go at a moment's warning; if we live in this way, we
          live just as we should live. No person who believes on the Lord
          Jesus Christ has a right to spend a day, an hour, or a minute of
          his life or her life in a manner unbecoming the profession of a
          Saint; they should be ready to depart this life any moment. I say
          that those who understand the things of God have no right,
          neither have they any wish, to live only so that they may enjoy
          the light of his spirit, enjoy communion with God, with his son
          Jesus Christ and with the Holy Ghost, so that they may be
          instructed day by day how to walk in the path that lies before
          them, the path that leads to life everlasting. But how easy it is
          for those who profess to be Saints, to be of the earth, earthy,
          and to seek after and love the world, and fall into the spirit of
          the world. How easy it is for them to receive the spirit of the
          world, and to forget the spirit of salvation that has been in
          their hearts. If we could keep constantly in our minds and before
          us what we really know, what the Lord has taught us, what we have
          read and what we have received by the whisperings of the Spirit,
          this would be satisfactory; but many do not retain these things,
          they pass from them, and when they have passed away doubt seized
          their minds, and they are at a loss to determine whether they
          ever understood anything or not.
          In the great providences of God, in bringing forth worlds into
          existence, as he has this, which worlds are continually coming
          into existence and passing from one state to another, inhabitants
          come forth; every living creature that we have any knowledge of
          God sends forth upon the earth that he frames, there to live and
          to enjoy, or to endure all that his providences bring forth upon
          the earth, that they may have an experience, that they may be
          prepared for another change. These changes are taking place
          continually, and have been from the beginning. In the vegetable
          and in the mineral kingdoms, as well as in the animal kingdom,
          these changes are continually going on. Man comes on to this
          stage of action, and he is continually undergoing a change until
          the time of his departure. He comes here--he knows not how. We
          know we are here; but who is it understands how we came, and the
          design and purpose of our Heavenly Father in sending us here?
          Here is the mystery to the Christian and scientific world; they
          do not understand it. "Would that we could" say the inhabitants
          of the earth, and especially those who believe on the Lord Jesus
          Christ. "How glad I should be to know where Jesus lives!" "How
          glad I should be to know whether I am going to him when I leave
          this world? But it is a mystery." Why should it be a mystery?
          Because the curtain is shut down before us, and the vision of our
          minds is closed up for a trial for us, for us to prove ourselves,
          and to show whether, while passing through darkness and
          affliction, in ignorance and with clouds of unbelief over us,
          after being made acquainted with the things of God, we will
          persevere and be firm to our faith, and so prove ourselves worthy
          to receive a glorious resurrection, a change to a more exalted
          state of being than we can possess and enjoy here on this earth.
          We are made expressly to dwell with those who continue to learn,
          and who receive knowledge on knowledge, wisdom on wisdom; we
          belong to the family of heaven. I am looking now upon a body of
          divinity. Every face that I see sheds forth a certain amount of
          the divinity I worship--my Father in heaven. Here we are, we are
          God's children, and we are brought forth to give us an
          experience, that we may know good from evil, light from darkness;
          that we may know how to serve God; that we may know why and
          wherefore we should refuse the evil and choose the good. I ask
          the philosophers--and I think it is probable there are some here
          to-day--how do you prove facts? By their contrast. How do you
          know this or that? By its contrast. We know and prove things by
          their opposite; we understand the evil because the good is
          present with us, and the Lord sends forth his intelligent
          children on the face of the earth to prove whether they are
          worthy to dwell with him in eternity.
          How frequently the question arises in the minds of the people--"I
          wish I knew where I was going!" Can you find out? Well, you will
          go into the spirit world, where brother Thomas now is. He has now
          entered upon a higher state of being, that is, his spirit has,
          than when in his body. "Why cannot I see him? Why cannot I
          converse with his spirit? I wish I could see my husband or my
          father and converse with him!" It is not reasonable that you
          should, it is not right that you should; perhaps you would miss
          the very object of your pursuit if you had this privilege, and
          there would be the same trial of faith to exercise you, not so
          severe a path of affliction for you to walk in, not so great a
          battle to fight, nor so great a victory to win, and you would
          miss the very object you are in pursuit of. It is right just as
          it is, that this veil should be closed down; that we do not see
          God, that we do not see angels, that we do not converse with them
          except through strict obedience to his requirements, and faith in
          Jesus Christ. When we contemplate the condition of man here upon
          the earth, and understand that we are brought forth for the
          express purpose of preparing ourselves through our faithfulness
          to inherit eternal life, we ask ourselves when we are going, what
          will be our condition, what will be the nature of our pursuits in
          a state of being in which we shall possess more vigor and a
          higher degree of intelligence than we possess here? Shall we have
          labor? Shall we have enjoyment in our labor? Shall we have any
          object of pursuit, or shall we sit and sing ourselves away to
          everlasting bliss? These are questions that arise in the minds of
          people, and they many times feel anxious to know something about
          hereafter. What a dark valley and a shadow it is that we call
          death! To pass from this state of existence as far as the mortal
          body is concerned, into a state of inanition, how strange it is!
          How dark this valley is! How mysterious is this road, and we have
          got to travel it alone. I would like to say to you, my friends
          and brethren, if we could see things as they are, and as we shall
          see and understand them, this dark shadow and valley is so
          trifling that we shall turn round and look about upon it and
          think, when we have crossed it, why this is the greatest
          advantage of my whole existence, for I have passed from a state
          of sorrow, grief, mourning, woe, misery, pain, anguish and
          disappointment into a state of existence, where I can enjoy life
          to the fullest extent as far as that can be done without a body.
          My spirit is set free, I thirst no more, I want to sleep no more,
          I hunger no more, I tire no more, I run, I walk, I labor, I go, I
          come, I do this, I do that, whatever is required of me, nothing
          like pain or weariness, I am full of life, full of vigor, and I
          enjoy the presence of my heavenly Father, by the power of his
          Spirit. I want to say to my friends, if you will live your
          religion, live so as to be full of the faith of God, that the
          light of eternity will shine upon you, you can see and understand
          these things for yourselves, that when you close your eyes upon
          mortality you wake up right in the presence of the Father and the
          Son if they are disposed to withdraw the vail, they can do as
          they please with regard to this; but you are in the spirit world
          and in a state of bliss and happiness, though we may call it
          Hades or hell. It is the world of spirits, it is where Jesus
          went, and where all go, both good and bad. The spirits of the
          living that depart this life go into the world of spirits, and if
          the Lord withdraws the vail it is much easier for us then to
          behold the face of our Father who is in heaven than when we are
          clothed upon with this mortality. I have not time at present to
          follow these reflections further.
          Then we should be encouraged, we should strengthen our faith by
          our hope, we should seek unto the Lord until our hope is made
          perfect, that we may have power to bear like Saints all the
          afflictions we meet with here on the earth. If we do this, when
          we have crossed the dark valley of the shadow of death it will be
          so easy to turn round and behold the path that we have walked,
          wherein we have had the privilege, the same as the Gods, of
          learning the difference between good and evil.
          You recollect that it was said in ancient days, to her that we
          call Mother, "Your eyes will be opened if you will eat of this
          fruit, and you will know as the Gods know, good from evil." This
          probation is given us that we may learn this lesson, and if we
          are faithful in it we shall learn how to succor those who are
          tempted and tried as we are, when we have the power to rescue
          them from the ravages of the enemy.
          This earth is our home, it was framed expressly for the
          habitation of those who are faithful to God, and who prove
          themselves worthy to inherit the earth when the Lord shall have
          sanctified, purified and glorified it and brought it back into
          his presence, from which it fell far into space. Ask the
          astronomer how far we are from the nearest of those heavenly
          bodies that are called the fixed stars. Can he count the miles?
          It would be a task for him to tell us the distance. When the
          earth was framed and brought into existence and man was placed
          upon it, it was near the throne of our Father in heaven. And when
          man fell--though that was designed in the economy, there was
          nothing about it mysterious or unknown to the Gods, they
          understood it all, it was all planned--but when man fell, the
          earth fell into space, and took up its abode in this planetary
          system, and the sun became our light. When the Lord said--"Let
          there be light," there was light, for the earth was brought near
          the sun that it might reflect upon it so as to give us light by
          day, and the moon to give us light by night. This is the glory
          the earth came from, and when it is glorified it will return
          again unto the presence of the Father, and it will dwell there,
          and these intelligent beings that I am looking at, if they live
          worthy of it, will dwell upon this earth.
          As for their labor and pursuits in eternity I have not time to
          take upon that subject; but we shall have plenty to do. We shall
          not be idle. We shall go on from one step to another, reaching
          forth into the eternities until we become like the Gods, and
          shall be able to frame for ourselves, by the behest and command
          of the Almighty. All those who are counted worthy to be exalted
          and to become Gods, even the sons of God, will go forth and have
          earths and worlds like those who framed this and millions on
          millions of others. This is our home, built expressly for us by
          the Father of our spirits, who is the Father, maker, framer and
          producer of these mortal bodies that we now inherit, and which go
          back to mother earth. When the spirit leaves them they are
          lifeless; and when the mother feels life come to her infant it is
          the spirit entering the body preparatory to the immortal
          existence. But suppose an accident occurs and the spirit has to
          leave this body prematurely, what then? All that the physician
          says is--"It is a still birth," and that is all they know about
          it: but whether the spirit remains in the body a minute, an hour,
          a day, a year, or lives there until the body has reached a good
          old age, it is certain that the time will come when they will be
          spared, and the body will return to mother earth, there to sleep
          upon that mother's bosom. That is all there is about death.
          Brother Thomas Williams is no more dead than he was a week ago.
          His clay is simply dead; and inasmuch as he honored this
          tabernacle that lies before us, it will take a sleep in the dust,
          to come forth immortal in the day of the first resurrection.
          This will be the case with us all; if we honor our being here.
          This is our path, and our great object should be to honor our
          calling here. We have bodies which, in infancy, childhood and
          youth, are just as pure as the angels, and if we honor these
          bodies, and preserve them in chastity, purity and holiness, they
          are just as good as the bodies of those that dwell in endless
          life, and they will be prepared to come forth in the glorious
          resurrection, and be crowned with glory, immortality and eternal
          lives. This is the privilege of all, and the work that the Savior
          has undertaken is to save all that will come unto him; none will
          be eternally lost except the sons of perdition; and the great
          work that God has brought forth in the latter-days in restoring
          the Priesthood is for the living and for the dead, to bring them
          up that they may enjoy a glorious resurrection.
          Brother Thomas has honored his body here, and he now goes into
          his glory, that is, as far as he can in the spirit world. He goes
          where he can do more good. He has gone where he can preach to
          those who have lived and died on the earth without the gospel,
          that they may have the privilege of receiving and obeying it,
          that they may be judged according to men in the flesh, and have
          the privilege of a glorious resurrection.
          This is the work of the Latter-day Saints, and if we are hated
          for anything, it is for trying to save the people; if we are
          persecuted it is for trying to do good to those who are living
          and those who are dead. I say, then, to the Saints, pursue your
          course, live your religion and be ready at a moment's warning.
          Brother Thomas Williams, while he sat at table eating his dinner,
          had not the privilege of speaking a word. A blood vessel broke,
          and his mouth and throat were instantly filled with blood to that
          degree that he could not speak a word. He tried to swallow a
          little salt and water, and probably he got a little down, but I
          doubt it very much. The blood gushed most probably from both
          stomach and lungs. The vessels were ripe and prepared to break,
          and the blood within him gushed out so copiously that he never
          spoke another word. How could he repent of his sins if he had not
          been prepared? What kind of a confession could he have made if he
          had wished to? None at all. He could not ask a Priest to pray for
          him if he had wanted to do so; no, he was prepared to go; he
          never spoke a word, but committed his soul to God without a
          moment's warning. I try to live that my work is always done; I
          have done everything that can be done up to the moment, just as
          he did it. I wish our business men would take pattern by him who
          lies before us. He was our paymaster in the Parent Branch of Z.
          C. M. I., and attended to this Branch of the financial business
          of the Institution, and there was not an order that was to be
          paid or filed, but what he had written a description of it and
          pinned it on to that order before he went to his dinner. In all
          his business there was not one scratch of the pen wanted to be
          done by other clerks, but every iota was done just as much as
          though he had known that he was going to breathe his last in
          twenty minutes.
          Saints, I wish you would take pattern by this man, and live your
          lives as he lived his life. I pray you in Christ's stead live
          your religion. If you want to know whether I live mine judge by
          my works, judge from my daily walk and conversation. You have the
          right to judge, but you be sure and live so that you will know
          whether I do or not. I live so that I know whether you do or not,
          exactly. Latter-day Saints live your religion and honor your God.
          I say to this family, the wives and children of brother Williams,
          God bless you and comfort your hearts; and I say, will you please
          live your religion so that you may be prepared to meet him? If
          you do not live so as to honor your Priesthood you will come
          short of meeting him in the resurrection, I assure you. Now live
          your religion. God is not to be mocked, the laws of God are to be
          honored, and all of his ordinances and requirements are to be
          filled and fulfilled. He requires strict obedience of his
          children, and if we are not obedient we shall come short of that
          glory that we anticipate now.
          I hope and pray that the Lord will bless you all. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / Orson
          Pratt, July 19, 1874
                             Orson Pratt, July 19, 1874
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER ORSON PRATT,
                  Delivered in the Old Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                          Sunday Afternoon, July 19, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                                  ORDAINED OF GOD.
          I hope the congregation will give their attention and pray for
          the Holy Spirit to be shed forth upon all those who are upright
          in heart, that we may be edified and instructed by the
          inspiration and power thereof, for this is one of the objects
          which we have in view in assembling ourselves together, from
          Sabbath to Sabbath, to be instructed in the things pertaining to
          the kingdom, and also to partake of the emblems of the death and
          sufferings of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
          We find ourselves here, upon this creation, intelligent beings,
          and questions no doubt arise in the minds of almost every man and
          every woman in relation to the future destiny of the human
          family, and what is the object of our being placed here on this
          earth for a short season and then passing away. It is a question
          not only asked by intelligent beings who believe in divine
          revelation, but the heathen and semi-barbarous nations, in fact
          all people reflect, more or less, concerning the object of their
          existence here, and what awaits them; in the future. Mankind gain
          very little light on this subject unless through the medium of
          divine revelation, hence we find among all people a great variety
          of views in relation to this matter. Our American Indians have
          some ideas of a future state of existence--they cannot persuade
          themselves to believe that man is destined, when he lays aside
          this mortal tabernacle, to be annihilated, but they look forward
          to a future state, and the pleasures they will hereafter enjoy in
          their happy hunting grounds. Some people believe one principle
          and some another in relation to this matter, and the only way man
          can be satisfied on a subject of so great importance is by
          receiving revelation from that order of beings--far in advance of
          us--who have a knowledge of the future state and condition of
          We find recorded in the revelations of the Most High, called the
          Bible, as well as in the Book of Mormon and the various modern
          revelations which God has given, that man is destined to live
          forever. God having revealed this fact to ancients and to
          moderns, raised up witnesses to bear testimony to the children of
          men that they are immortal begins, and that this change which
          comes upon them, denominated death, is not an annihilation of
          their being or an end of their existence, but it is merely a
          casting off or laying aside of the mortal tabernacle; that man
          lives in the eternal world even after he appears to be dead, and
          that, if a righteous man, he has joy and happiness, but if a
          wicked man, he has the gnawing of conscience, and misery, and
          wretchedness; and that he expects, according to divine
          revelation, to receive again, in due time, the tabernacle that he
          has thrown off for a moment. It is sown in weakness, says the
          Apostle Paul, it is raised in power; it is laid down as a mortal
          body, it is raised up as an immortal body.
          If we, by study or research, could discover some method or
          principle by which we could remain in this world and live in this
          tabernacle forever, we should be willing to do so with all the
          inconveniences of the present order of things, and still be
          joyful in our hearts. If any man could by research or learning
          discover some kind of a way, or means or medicine that would give
          immortality to the children of men, even in their present state,
          he would be considered one of the greatest men that ever lived
          and one who had bestowed the greatest blessing upon his
          fellow-creatures; he would be lauded to the very skies, and his
          name would be handed down among all people and nations as one of
          the greatest benefactors of mankind; so earnestly do we feel to
          cling to life and desire to live, that we would be very willing
          to put up with the inconveniences of the present state if we
          could only remain and the monster death have no power over us.
          But it is in the order of God that man should die. Man brought
          this upon himself by transgressing the laws of heaven. By putting
          forth his hand and partaking of that which God had forbidden, he
          brought this great evil into the world. Death not only came upon
          our first parents, who committed the first great transgression,
          but the curse has been inherited by all their generation. None
          can escape the curse so far as the mortal body is concerned.
          I think, perhaps, this broad assertion may be contradicted in the
          minds of some. They may tell us of Enoch, who was translated to
          heaven; they may speak of Elijah, who was caught up in a chariot
          of fire, and say, "here, at least are two exceptions to the
          general rule." But what do we know concerning translation? What
          has God revealed in all the revelations contained in the Old and
          New Testaments in relation to a translated being? Are we assured
          that such begins never will have to undergo a change equivalent
          to that of death?
          Our new revelations that we have received inform us of a great
          many individuals that were translated before the flood. We read
          that a great and mighty Prophet of the Most High God was sent
          forth in the days of Adam, namely Enoch, the seventh generation
          from Adam, who lived contemporary with his ancestor Adam; that in
          his days a great number of people heard the plan of salvation
          preached to them by the power of the Holy Ghost that rested upon
          Enoch and those who were called with him; that they received this
          plan of salvation and gathered themselves out from among the
          various nations of the earth where they had obeyed the Gospel;
          that they were instructed, after they assembled in one, in
          righteousness, for three hundred and sixty-five years; that they
          learned the laws of the kingdom, and concerning God and every
          principle of righteousness that was necessary to enable them to
          enter into the fullness of the glory of heaven; they were
          instructed to build up a city, and it was called a city of
          holiness, for God came down and dwelt with that people; he was in
          their midst, they beheld this glory, they saw his face, and he
          condescended to dwell among them for many long years, during
          which time they were instructed and taught in all of his ways,
          and among other things they learned the great doctrine and
          principle of translation, for that is a doctrine the same as the
          doctrine of the resurrection of the dead, which is among the
          first principles of the plan of salvation; and we may also say
          that the doctrine of translation, which is intimately connected
          with that of the resurrection, is also one of the first
          principles of the doctrines of Christ. They were instructed in
          relation to this government, the object of it, &c.
          According to the light and knowledge which the Latter-day Saints
          have upon this subject, revealed in the revelations given through
          Joseph Smith, we find that those people, when they were fully
          prepared, having learned the doctrine of translation, were caught
          up into the heavens, the whole city, the people and their
          habitations. How much of the earth was taken up in connection
          with their habitations we are not informed. It might have been a
          large region. You may ask--"Where was this city of Zion built in
          ancient days?" According to new revelations it was built upon
          this great western hemisphere. When I speak of this western
          hemisphere I speak of it as it now exists. In those days the land
          was united; the eastern and the western hemisphere were one; but
          they dwelt in that portion of our globe that is now called the
          western hemisphere, and they were taken up from this portion of
          the globe. No doubt all the region of country occupied by them
          was translated, or taken away from the earth.
          Does this prove that they were immortal beings from the time of
          their translation? No; it does not prove any such thing. How are
          we to know anything about it? We can not learn anything in
          relation to it, except by revelation. God has revealed to us that
          they are held in reserve, in some part or portion of space; their
          location is not revealed, but they are held in reserve to be
          revealed in the latter times, to return to their ancient mother
          earth; all the inhabitants that were then taken away are to
          return to the earth.
          Some five thousand years have passed away since they were caught
          up to the heavens. What has been their condition during that
          time? Have they been free from death? They have been held in
          reserve in answer to their prayers. What were their prayers?
          Enoch and his people prayed that a day of righteousness might be
          brought about during their day; they sought for it with all their
          hearts; they looked abroad over the face of the earth and saw the
          corruptions that had been introduced by the various nations, the
          descendants of Adam, and their hearts melted within them, and
          they groaned before the Lord with pain and sorrow, because of the
          wickedness of the children of men, and they sought for a day of
          rest, they sought that righteousness might be revealed, that
          wickedness might be swept away and that the earth might rest for
          a season. God gave them visions, portrayed to them the future of
          the world, showed unto them that this earth must fulfill the
          measure of its creation; that generation after generation must be
          born and pass away, and that, after a certain period of time, the
          earth would rest from wickedness, that the wicked would be swept
          away, and the earth would be cleansed and sanctified and be
          prepared for a righteous people. "Until that day," saith the
          Lord, "you and your people shall rest, Zion shall be taken up
          into my own bosom." Ancient Zion should be held in reserve until
          the day of rest should come, "Then," said the Lord to Enoch,
          "thou and all thy city shall descend upon the earth, and your
          prayers shall be answered."
          They have been gone, as I have already stated, about five
          thousand years. What have they been doing? All that we know
          concerning this subject is what has been revealed through the
          great and mighty Prophet of the last days, Joseph Smith--that
          unlearned youth whom God raised up to bring forth the Book of
          Mormon and to establish this latter-day Church. He has told us
          that they have been ministering angels during all that time. To
          whom? To those of the terrestrial order, if you can understand
          that expression. God gave them the desires of their hearts, the
          same as he gave to the three Nephites, to whom he gave the
          privilege, according to their request, of remaining and bringing
          souls unto Christ while the world should stand. Even so, he
          granted to the people of Enoch their desire to become ministering
          spirits unto those of the terrestrial order until the earth
          should rest and they should again return to it.
          Joseph inquired concerning their condition, whether they were
          subject to death during that period, and was informed, as you
          will find in the history of this Church, as printed in the
          Millennial Star and other publications thereof, that these
          personages have to pass through a change equivalent to that of
          death; notwithstanding their translation from the earth, a
          certain change has to be wrought upon them that is equivalent to
          death, and probably equivalent also to the resurrection of the
          dead. But before that change comes they minister in their office
          unto those of another order, that is the terrestrial order.
          Strangers will not understand perhaps what we mean by the
          terrestrial order. If they will take the opportunity of reading
          the doctrines of this Church, as laid down in the revelations
          given through Joseph Smith, they will learn what our views are in
          relation to this matter. God revealed by vision the different
          orders of being in the eternal worlds. One class, the highest of
          all, is called the celestial; another class, the next to the
          celestial in glory, power, might and dominion, is called the
          terrestrial; another class, still lower than the terrestrial in
          glory and exaltation, is called the telestial. This middle class,
          whose glory is typified by the glory of our moon in the firmament
          of the heavens as compared with the sun, are those who once dwelt
          on this or some other creation and, if they have had the Gospel
          laid before them they have not had a full opportunity of
          receiving it; or they have not heard it all, and have died
          without having the privilege. In the resurrection they come forth
          with terrestrial bodies. They must be administered to says the
          vision, and God has appointed agents or messengers to minister to
          these terrestrial begins, for their good, blessing, exaltation,
          glory and honor in the eternal worlds.
          Enoch and his people understanding this principle sought that
          they, before receiving the fullness of their celestial glory,
          might be the instruments in the hands of God of doing much good
          among beings of the terrestrial order.
          We read in the New Testament concerning certain angels that are
          in the eternal worlds, and the question is asked by the Apostle
          Paul--"Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to
          minister for those who shall be heirs of salvation?"--not for
          those who were already heirs of salvation but for those who shall
          be--those who were to be redeemed, that were to be brought forth
          and exalted. Enoch and his people were appointed to this
          ministry, holding the Priesthood thereof, with power and
          authority to administer in order that those beings may be exalted
          and brought up, and inherit all the glory that they are desirous
          to receive.
          Much might be said concerning these different orders of Glory,
          but we feel to pass on, and we will speak a few words now
          concerning the resurrection from the dead of those who have fully
          prepared themselves for the highest glory, the glory of the
          celestial kingdom, the highest of all, the holiest of all, the
          kingdom where God the Father sits enthroned in glory and in
          power, ruling and governing all things. There is a certain law,
          which God ordained before the foundation of the world, an
          irrevocable decree that those who would obey that law should have
          this great and most glorious of all the resurrections, be raised
          to celestial power, thrones and exaltations, where they could
          dwell in the presence of their Fathers and their God, throughout
          all the futures ages of eternity.
          Do you enquire what this law is which God revealed, and which was
          fore-ordained in the counsels of eternity, to be made manifest
          unto the sons and daughters of men for their exaltation to this
          highest heaven? Do you desire to know the road, the ordinances,
          the principles, by which we may attain to that highest of all
          exaltations? I will begin and say to all, that every individual
          that ever attains to the fulness of that glory, I mean those who
          have come to the years of understanding and maturity not
          referring at all to little children--must be born of the water
          and of the Spirit in order to be prepared to enter that highest
          glory of all. No one gets there upon any other principle. No
          ordinances, principles, laws or institutions laid down by the
          children of men that vary from that principle, will ever bring us
          into the celestial kingdom. We have the words of Jesus on this
          subject, when speaking to Nicodemus--"Verily, verily, I say unto
          you, except a man be born of the water and of the Spirit, he can
          in no wise enter into the kingdom of heaven." It is an
          impossibility, because the word of the great Jehovah has gone
          forth, and will not be revoked, and unless we are born of the
          water and of the Spirit, we cannot enter there.
          What do we understand by being born of the water? What we
          understand, what God has revealed to us, as well as to the
          ancients, is, that we must be laid under the water and be brought
          forth out of the water, typical of birth, for this is a birth of
          the water. Who is a fit subject for this birth of the water? None
          but those who truly believe in the Lord Jesus Christ as the
          Savior of the world; those who believe that he died to redeem the
          world and that he shed his blood to atone for the sins of the
          world; those who believe this and truly repent of all their sins
          are the only subjects who are justified before God in going down
          into the waters of baptism, beings immersed in the water and
          brought forth again out of the water, which is the new birth of
          the water. It will do no person any good to be baptized a hundred
          times if his baptism is not connected with true faith in God and
          in Jesus Christ, and in his revelations and commandments; and
          unless he sincerely and truly repents of his sins, reforms his
          life and enters into a covenant with God to serve him in all
          righteousness, humility, meekness and lowliness of heart, his
          baptism would be good for nothing, it would not be acknowledged
          in heaven, it would not be recorded in the archives of eternity
          to his justification in the great judgment day. Let me go still
          further, and say, that if we have repented of and been baptized
          for the remission of our sins, if we do not seek after the birth
          of the spirit also, our baptism will avail us nothing; they must
          go hand in hand--the birth of the water first and then the birth
          of the spirit.
          What do we understand by the birth of the spirit? I answer, that
          there is a birth of the spirit, in other words, those persons who
          receive the Holy Ghost are filled with it, are immersed within
          it, they are clothed upon therewith, and consequently are born
          anew of it, and they are without desires to do evil, their
          desires to do that which is wrong are taken away, and they become
          new creatures in Christ Jesus, begins born of the spirit, as well
          as being born of the water. Here then are certain laws,
          ordinances or principles, as a beginning or starting point, by
          which we may gain an entrance into that highest glory of which I
          have been speaking.
          Another thing to be considered in receiving these ordinances--I
          may be ever so sincere and humble and ever so willing to repent
          of my sins: I may have ever so much faith in God and in his Son
          Jesus Christ, and yet if I am not baptized by a man holding
          divine authority from God, having the right to baptize me in the
          name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost, my
          baptism will not be legal, it will not be the new birth, and I
          cannot enter into the kingdom of God, according to the words of
          Jesus. What then does it require to constitute a man having
          divine authority? Can any one by a mere impression upon his mind
          consider that he has divine authority to baptize his fellows? No;
          it needs a call from heaven, it needs a new revelation
          contemporary with the individuals that act, a revelation from God
          calling the person by name, setting them apart, ordaining them
          and calling them to officiate, commanding them to administer. Any
          other person who attempts to administer baptism will not be
          acknowledged in heaven. But a man holding the right by virtue of
          his divine calling and ordination, and by virtue of the power
          that God has bestowed upon his and the commandment that God has
          revealed to him, can go down and administer the baptism of water,
          and it will be recognized in heaven; it will not only be recorded
          on earth among the Saints in the Church here on the earth, but it
          will be recorded in the books of eternity, the records that are
          kept on high, and in that day, when all men shall be judged out
          of the books that are written, it will be found that the books
          kept here on earth will accord with those books that are kept in
          heaven, and by these books will parties be justified, and by
          these books will the legal ordinances that have been administered
          be acknowledged and recognized in heaven.
          This calls forth another query by the world--"Why is it that you
          Latter-day Saints are so exclusive in the administration of the
          ordinances that you will not admit me, a Baptist, to join you
          society on my old baptism? I have been immersed," says the
          Baptist; "I was sincere, I repented of my sins, and yet you
          Latter-day Saints will not receive me into your communion and to
          become a member of your Church unless I am baptized by one of
          your authorities." The answer is, we do not recognize, as I have
          already stated, the authority of the Baptists, Presbyterians,
          Methodists, Roman Catholics, nor of any Christian society upon
          the whole face of our globe to administer in the sacred
          ordinances, unless God has called them by new revelation, even as
          Aaron was called in ancient days. Have they been thus called? Ask
          them, and they will tell you no. Ask them if there has been any
          later revelation then the Old and New Testament, and all these
          societies will tell you that God has not given any revelation,
          raised up any Prophets or inspired Apostles, sent any angels, or
          given any visions, since the day that John the Revelator, the
          last of the Apostles, closed up his writing. Oh what an awful
          condition they must be in if this is the case! And who, with the
          exception of the Latter-day Saints, I ask again, among all
          nations, kindreds, peoples, tongues and religious denominations,
          upon the face of our globe, has any divine authority? Not one,
          hence their baptisms are illegal, their administrations of the
          Lord's Supper are illegal, and all their administrations in
          ordinances are not recognized in heaven. If God has not said
          anything since the days of the ancient Apostles, no wonder that
          he commanded, in these latter days, that we should not receive
          any into our Church unless they came in by the door of baptism.
          But we have only told you some of the first principles of the
          Gospel of the Son of God, which are necessary to prepare the
          human family to enter into that highest glory that is spoken of
          by the Apostle Paul--the glory of the celestial. He says in the
          fifteenth chapter of the first epistle to the Corinthians--"There
          is one glory of the sun, another glory of the moon, and another
          glory of the stars; for as one star differs from another star in
          glory, so also is the resurrection of the dead." The glory of the
          sun is the highest, it is called by Paul the celestial, and I
          have told you some of the first principles of the celestial law.
          If you would inherit a celestial glory you must be willing to
          abide by the celestial law, otherwise you will come short. But do
          we stop with these first principles? No, there are many other
          great and glorious principles, connected with the celestial law,
          which God has revealed, and set forth as necessary for his people
          to receive, in order to prepare them to enter into that glory. I
          will name one--marriage.
          We know very little about the order of heaven, so far as marriage
          is concerned, and all that we do know God has revealed. He has
          told us in the New Testament, "What God hath joined together, let
          no man put asunder." It seems then that there is a marriage
          wherein God officiates, or in other words, he officiates by his
          power and authority, he officiates in the uniting of men and
          women in marriage, hence it is called joining them together of
          God--what God joins, not what man joins. It is a divine
          institution, it cannot be administered by the law-making
          department. There may be marriages under the civil law; Congress,
          or the Legislatures of the various States and Territories may
          pass laws regulating the marriage institution, and marriages
          performed according to the provisions thereof would be legal, so
          far as the laws of man are concerned. But has God anything to do
          with these marriages? Just as much as he has with baptism when it
          is administered illegally. I have already shown you that a
          baptism administered by a man without authority is good for
          nothing; a man and woman united in marriage by any civil law ever
          framed since the world began, are illegally married in the sight
          of heaven; to be legal there, it must be performed by a man
          called by revelation and ordained and commanded to celebrate that
          Now I want to say a few words to our young people who dwell in
          different part of the Territory. I have heard that some of them,
          perhaps through a want of understanding of the laws of God, have
          suffered themselves to be married by the civil law--for instance,
          by a justice of the peace, alderman or judge. That will do very
          well so far as the laws of the land are concerned, but has God
          anything to do with such marriages? Nothing at all. Has he ever
          authorized marriages to be solemnized after this order? Not at
          all. Are children born of such marriages your legal sons and
          daughters in the sight of heaven? Not at all; they are in one
          sense bastards. That is a pretty hard saying, is it not? They are
          actually bastards. For instance, there are many old people who
          never heard of the divine appointment and authority which God has
          sent forth from heaven in relation to marriage, who have been
          married according to the laws of the countries in which they
          resided before they heard of this work. They complied literally
          with their laws, and so far as the law was concerned that was all
          right. But were they, legally, in the sight of God, husband and
          wife? Just as much as I would be a son of God and born of water,
          if I were sprinkled by a sectarian priest, or baptized by a
          Baptist priest, just as much. Could we claim a celestial glory,
          and all the privileges and blessings and exaltation that God has
          ordained from the foundation of the world to be bestowed upon
          those who comply with the celestial law, unless we complied with
          this law? Could our children, in the morning of the resurrection
          come up and say to us--"We claim you as our legal parents;" "I am
          your son," "I am your daughter, and you are my parents, and
          therefore I claim the privilege of partaking of all the glory
          that you partake of, and of receiving the thrones and dominions
          and kingdoms and powers and principalities in heavenly places in
          Christ Jesus?" They could not claim any such thing; neither could
          the parents have a claim upon these children; neither could they
          be gathered together and organized into a family capacity. Why?
          Because the celestial law has not been attended to. Inquires
          one--"do you mean to make us all out bastards?" Not in the eyes
          of the law, but in the eyes of heaven. I am pointing out the
          difference now between the two laws--the law of man and the law
          of God, or the celestial law. Parents, if you would have your
          families connected with you in a social capacity hereafter, you
          must take steps to secure them by obeying the celestial law. 
          Inquires one--"Is there any remedy for these illegal marriages
          that we entered into before we heard the Gospel?" Yes, God has
          ordained from before the foundation of the world, laws and
          institutions adapted to the condition of all the human family,
          which, when revealed, if they are attended to by the children of
          men, will bless and exalt them, and consequently the propriety of
          gathering. God has not revealed a law in relation to marriage
          which may be officiated in everywhere, at random, without any
          record; he has ordained that in the last days, in Zion and in
          Jerusalem, and in the remnant whom the Lord our God shall call,
          there shall be deliverance. Deliverance from what? From all our
          former foolish traditions, and from the powers of darkness and
          everything evil. For this reason the people are gathering up from
          the nations of the earth, that they may be taught the law of
          deliverance; that they may be taught, legally and properly, how
          to become connected as husbands and wives in the sight of heaven;
          and inasmuch as our children have been born unto us under the
          covenants of the civil law, that our marriage may be renewed
          under the new covenant that God has revealed, and be recorded and
          sealed on earth and in heaven for the benefit of our children and
          their posterity for ever and ever. You will find, when you learn
          further concerning the celestial glory, Paul's words to be true,
          that in that glory, those who are in God must themselves be
          connected in marriage; for says the Apostle Paul, "the man is not
          without the woman in the Lord, and the woman is not without the
          man in the Lord." This is an eternal principle, an eternal law
          pertaining to that glory. You may try to get the fulness thereof
          singlehanded, but you can't do it, for God has made this a point
          of order and law, that all beings who are exalted to that highest
          glory shall be united in the Lord, as husband and wife.
          Inquires one--"Do you mean that such relationship is going to
          continue after this life in the eternal worlds?" Yes, that which
          God has appointed and ordained in eternity, in relation to the
          creations and worlds that he has made, must be fulfilled. There
          is no such thing as a woman dwelling separately and
          independently, and inheriting a fullness of the glory of heaven,
          or a man either; they must be united together in the Lord.
          Now you begin to understand a little of the principle of
          marriage, as believed in by the Latter-day Saints. We might point
          out a great many other principles of the celestial law, necessary
          to observe in order to attain the highest glory, but as the heat
          is intense, it would not be wisdom to detain you. Let me say to
          my young brethren and sisters, do not transgress the law of
          heaven. These things could be done without any very great
          condemnation by people abroad, but when we are at the place where
          we can be taught and instructed in the ways of the Lord, if we
          then, with our eyes wide open, go and get our marriages
          celebrated by the civil authorities of the land alone, we shall
          find ourselves under great condemnation. God will judge the
          people according to the light they have, and if you have been
          properly instructed in regard to his laws and ordinances do not
          transgress them, but attend to them according to the order of
          heaven, as you are instructed. Let all your marriages be, not for
          time only, according to the Gentile system of marriage, but let
          them be covenants for eternity, and let them be sealed upon you
          by a man of God having authority to do these things: and let them
          be recorded, and let these records be such that, when the books
          are opened, they will be found to accord with the records of
          heaven, then, if you are faithful, you will be entitled to you
          wife and your children, to all eternity, by virtue of the
          covenants which you have entered into, and which have been sealed
          on earth, by divine authority, and sealed in heaven in your
          behalf. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 /
          Brigham Young, August 9, 1874
                            Brigham Young, August 9, 1874
                    Delivered in the Meeting house, at Lehi City,
                          Sunday Afternoon, August 9, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          There are a few ideas and reflections that I wish to give to the
          people. I shall have to make my remarks brief in order to be
          prepared for our journey northward. You hear a good deal from
          time to time, and you think a good deal, about the condition of
          the Latter-day Saints, and what we are trying to do with them
          concerning the United Order. I wish you to understand that this
          is no new revelation; it is the order of the kingdom where God
          and Christ dwell; it has been from eternity and will be to
          eternity, without end, consequently we have nothing particularly
          new to offer you, but we have the commandments that have been
          from the beginning. With regard to those who wish to have new
          revelation they will please to accommodate themselves and call
          this a new revelation. On this occasion I will not repeat
          anything particular in respect to the language of revelation,
          further than to say--Thus saith the Lord unto my servant Brigham,
          Call ye, call ye, upon the inhabitants of Zion, to organize
          themselves in the Order of Enoch, in the New and Everlasting
          Covenant, according to the Order of Heaven, for the furtherance
          of my kingdom upon the earth, for the perfecting of the Saints,
          for the salvation of the living and the dead.
          You can accommodate yourselves by calling this a new revelation,
          if you choose; it is no new revelation, but it is the express
          word and will of God to this people.
          How many do you think would like and have hearts to enter into
          this Order? Let me ask you a question. You sisters as well as the
          brethren who have read the Bible and the Book of Doctrine and
          Covenants, whether you have read the Book of Mormon and the
          sermons or not, who is there among you who does not know and
          understand that the people called the Saints of the Most High, or
          the disciples of the Lord Jesus, must be of one heart and of one
          mind? I do not think there are any of you who do not know, feel
          and understand this just as I do, and yet perhaps you do not
          realize it. We can see that it does not sit upon the hearts and
          take hold of the affections of the people; it does not break up
          every particle of the fallow ground of their hearts so that they
          can receive this into their affections and bring forth fruit to
          the glory of God. If those now before me, brethren and sisters,
          who profess to be Latter-day Saints, were of one heart and of one
          mind in the sense of the Scripture that is given to us, revealed
          in days of old and in our day, we never should have to say to
          them--Pay your Tithing; but the feeling of every heart, and the
          language of every one who has come to years of discretion would
          be if there is a Temple to be built--"What can I do to forward
          this Temple? Do you want my work? I have abundance for my family
          to eat, they are capable of clothing themselves with a little
          help from me, I can spend all my time;" and the sisters would
          say--"We can make the stockings and the shirts, and we can make
          up the cloth, if you will give it to us, for the hands, and we
          can make their hats and, if necessary, we can make their shoes."
          If this was in the hearts and affections of the people it would
          no longer be Tithing alone, but he inquiry would be--"What do you
          want? We have abundance."
          We ask nothing but the labor of the people, and if the Latter-day
          Saints felt the importance of the mission that is upon them, and
          of fulfilling the requirements of heaven that are resting upon
          them, you would see temples rising here like magic; it would be
          nothing but a breakfast spell for us to build a Temple. How do
          you think those feel who do understand the mind and will of the
          Lord, and view the condition of the Latter-day Saints as it
          really is? Unless you see it by the Spirit, you know nothing
          about it.
          We can say to the Latter-day Saints, it is the mind and will of
          God that we organize according to the best plans and patterns and
          system that we can get for the present. We can do this, and thus
          far give to the Latter-day Saints the mind and will of the Lord;
          but we can not make a man or a woman yield to the will of God
          unless they are disposed to. I can plant, I can water, but I
          cannot give the increase; I cannot cause the wheat and corn to
          grow. It is true I can break up and prepare the ground and cast
          the seed therein, but I cannot cause it to grow, that can only be
          done by the people having willing hearts, ready minds, and a
          disposition to go forth with a firm determination and willing
          hand to build up the kingdom. I will do my part--I have done it.
          Brother Erastus Snow has made certain eulogistic remarks about my
          career in the Church, but I will say this with regard to Brother
          Brigham--I do not know anything about what he has earned, I never
          inquired about that or about what he deserves. All I have to do
          is to take good care of everything that the Lord gives me,
          improve upon every means of grace and every talent he gives me,
          improve upon the visions of the Spirit and speak the word of the
          Lord to the people. My mind has been and it is to-day, that there
          is not an Elder in all Israel that can do his duty in declaring
          the things of God to the nations of the earth unless he declares
          those truths by the power of revelation. He must speak by the
          power of God or he does not magnify his calling. The theory of
          our religion will not answer the purpose of saving us. I can call
          upon the people, but will they organize themselves? Some inquire,
          "Is this exactly the order that the Lord requires? It is just
          exactly what the Lord requires.
          I will say to you with regard to the kingdom of God on the
          earth--Here is the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,
          organized with its rules, regulations and degrees, with the
          quorums of the holy Priesthood, from the First Presidency to the
          teachers and deacons; here we are, an organization. God called
          upon Joseph, he called upon Oliver Cowdery, then others were
          called through Joseph, the Church was organized, he with his two
          counselors comprised the First Presidency. In a few years the
          Quorum of the Twelve was organized, the High Counsel was
          organized, the High Priests' quorum was organized, the Seventies'
          quorums were organized, and the Priests' quorum, the Teachers'
          quorum and the Deacons'. This is what we are in the habit of
          calling the kingdom of God. But there are further organizations.
          The Prophet gave a full and complete organization to this kingdom
          the Spring before he was killed. This kingdom is the kingdom that
          Daniel spoke of, which was to be set up in the last days; it is
          the kingdom that is not to be given to another people; it is the
          kingdom that is to be held by the servants of God, to rule the
          nations of the earth, to send forth those laws and ordinances
          that shall be suitable and that shall apply themselves to the
          Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; that will apply
          themselves to the mother Church, "the holy Catholic Church," they
          will commend themselves to every Protestant Church upon the
          earth; they will commend themselves to every class of infidels,
          and will throw their protecting arms around the whole human
          family, protecting them in their rights. If they wish to worship
          a white dog, they will have the privilege; if they wish to
          worship the sun they will have the privilege; if they wish to
          worship a man they will have the privilege, and if they wish to
          worship the "unknown God" they will have the privilege. This
          kingdom will circumscribe them all and will issue laws and
          ordinances to protect them in their rights--every right that
          every people, sect and person can enjoy, and the full liberty
          that God has granted to them without molestation.
          Can you understand me? This Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day
          Saints is organized for the building up of this Church alone; it
          is not for the building up of Catholicism, it is not for
          promoting any or all of the dissentients from the Mother Church,
          it is alone for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
          and for no other body of people. When we organize according to
          these laws and ordinances we make this people one, but we do not
          bring in the Methodists, Presbyterians or Calvinists, they are
          independent of themselves. But the kingdom of God, when it is
          established and bears rule, will defend the Methodists in their
          rights just as much as Latter-day Saints, but it will not allow
          them to infringe upon the right of their neighbors; this will be
          prohibited. These sects may want to afflict the Saints just as
          now; they may want to persecute each other just as they now do;
          they may want to bring everybody to their standard just as they
          do now. But the kingdom of God, when it is set up upon the earth,
          will be after the pattern of heaven, and will compel no man nor
          woman to go contrary to his or her conscience. They would compel
          us to go contrary to our consciences, wouldn't they? I recollect
          when there were but few Methodists, when they were poor, and when
          there was scarcely a college-bred minister on the continent of
          America in the Methodist Church. I recollect them in their
          infancy, but what would they do now? Then they were persecuted,
          and thought they bore a great deal for Christ's sake. Perhaps
          they did.
          Now I want to give you these few words--the kingdom of God will
          protect every person, every sect and all people upon the face of
          the whole earth, in their legal rights. I shall not tell you the
          names of the members of this kingdom, neither shall I read to you
          its constitution, but the constitution was given by revelation.
          The day will come when it will be organized in strength and
          power. Now, as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,
          we work our way along the best we can. Can you understand this?
          A few words upon the organization of this United Order. We regret
          that we are not in a capacity to make our own laws pertaining to
          our domestic affairs as we choose; if we were in a state capacity
          we could do so. The legislature could then pass laws by which we
          would have the right to deed our property to the Church, to the
          Trustee-in-Trust, if we chose, or in any other way the people
          would like to deed their property to God and his kingdom. But we
          can not do this now, we are not a State. We are in the capacity
          of servants now, where we have to bow to the whims and caprices
          of the ignorant, and to the prejudice of wilful, ignorant
          sectarianism; consequently we are under the necessity of getting
          up our constitution or the articles of our association so that
          they will agree with existing statutes and be legal, that we can
          carry on business as we wish without being infringed upon our
          molested by anybody.
          Some have complained, and say--"This does not incorporate the
          whole, we want articles of agreement under which we can give all
          that we have got." Let me say to you that our articles of
          confederation, agreement or association will allow us to deed
          every particle of property that we have got to this co-operative
          institution--our houses, farms, sheep, cattle, horses, our labor,
          our railroad stock, bank stock, factories, and everything that we
          have we can deed to the trustees of this association. Whatever
          you have here in Lehi that you wish to deed over to those you
          have selected to be a board of trustees you can deed to them, to
          take the supervision of it, and then you will put it out of the
          hands perhaps of unruly froward children and spendthrifts, and do
          good by so doing. And if you can put in every particle of your
          property, and have this governed and controlled by the best men
          you have here, why not do this just as well as to deed it to
          George A. Smith the Trustee-in-Trust? Does not this answer every
          purpose? It does. Look at the reason of it if you wish to. If it
          is the word and the wish and the will of the organization here to
          deed only part of the property, I expect they will take the
          liberty of doing so; but this would not suit me. If I had
          property here in this place I should wish to deed every particle
          of it to this association. I wish to deed every particle of my
          property in Provo, just as quick as there is an opportunity, and
          have it done in a way that it will be beneficial to the people. I
          am laboring under a certain embarrassment and so are many others,
          with regard to deeding property, and that is to find men who know
          what to do with property when it is in their hands. I will relate
          a circumstance here, which I related to some of the brethren the
          other day. There was a very excellent good man in this Church who
          found it very hard to get along with his large family. He
          received a very fine present for which he was very thankful to
          the donor; but after it was given to him, he said he did not know
          what to do with the elephant now that he had got it. He called
          his present an "elephant" on his hands; he could not plow with
          him, he could not ride him to meeting, he could not harness him
          to a carriage, and in fact he could not do anything with him, the
          "elephant" was too large for him to handle. When this factory at
          Provo can go into the hands of men who know what to do with it,
          it will go; when my factory in Salt Lake County can go into the
          hands of men who know what to do with it, it will go. There is my
          beloved brother James W. Cummings, who has worked my factory ten
          or twelve years; he counts himself A No. 1 in all financial
          business. I have offered the factory to him and his workmen on
          the co-operative system, in the order that we wish to adopt. I
          said to him--"Take it and manage it, you are welcome." Said
          he--"If I only had plenty of money to furnish it I suppose I
          could do it." Have not I furnished it without money? Yes, I had
          not the first sixpence to begin with. I furnished my factories,
          and I have built what I have built without asking how much they
          cost, or where I was going to get the money to do it. When we
          find somebody that knows what to do with property, somebody who
          knows how to handle the "elephant," we will give them charge of
          it. If I had him I would make the "elephant" get down on his
          knees to me and keep him there until I allowed him to get up, and
          then teach him to get up with his burden on his back, and carry
          it where I said. As quick as we can find men who know what to do
          with the "elephants" we will put the "elephants" into their
          hands; but here, as elsewhere, you will find in all these
          business transactions, that the greatest difficulty will be to
          find men who know what to do with money or means when they have
          it. Can you understand this? I want to say to you who have a
          little money, a farm or other property, seek first to know where
          God wants you to put that property. That is the word of the Lord
          to you. Hearken and hear it, men and women, seek to know where
          God wants you to put it, and if it is into a factory where you
          will not get a farthing for ten years, put it there, and in the
          end the Lord will bring out more means to you than if you let it
          out at twenty four per cent. You will make by it. "How do you
          know, brother Brigham?" I know my own experience; my character
          and my life have shown that from the first time I had fifty cents
          after I came into the Church my first desire was to know what to
          do with it. In the days of Joseph where we lived and worked, it
          was harder then to get fifty cents than it is for a poor man to
          get a hundred dollars now, but if Joseph came along and
          said--"Brigham, have you got fifty cents?" "Yes, I have." "I want
          it." "You can have it always and forever." If it was a hundred
          dollars, or two hundred dollars, he had it, and had it freely,
          and I never asked for it again. And if ever I could work at home
          and get fifty cents in money to by a little molasses for my
          family to sop they johnny cake in, if Joseph wanted it he always
          had it, and I got rich by it, and I can say so of all who take
          the same course; while the covetous, those who are striving
          continually to build themselves up in the things of this life,
          will be poor indeed; they will be poor in spirit and poor in
          heavenly things.
          You have heard me say, a great many times, that there is not that
          man or woman in this Church, and there never was and never will
          be, who turn up their noses at the counsel that is given them
          from the First Presidency, but who, unless they repent of and
          refrain from such conduct will eventually go out of the Church
          and go to hell, every one of them; and I expect one thing will be
          true that Joseph said when living. A gentleman came to see him
          and asked him a great many questions, and among the rest he
          said--"I suppose you calculate that you are just right, and that
          you "Mormons" are all going to be saved and everybody else will
          be damned." Said Joseph, "Sir, I will tell you this one thing,
          all the rest of the world will be damned, and I expect that most
          of the "Mormons" will be unless they do better then they have
          done." The man did not stop for an explanation. What Joseph meant
          by being damned was that people will go into the spirit world
          without the Priesthood, and consequently they are under the power
          of Satan, and will have to be redeemed, or else they will be
          forever under his power. That is all there is about that.
          Now Latter-day Saints, I want to say this to you, when a man
          lifts his heel against the counsel that we give him, I know that
          man will apostatize, just as sure as he is a living being, unless
          he repents and refrains from such conduct. Brother George A.
          Smith has been reading a little out of the revelation concerning
          celestial marriage, and I want to say to my sisters that if you
          lift you heels against this revelation, and say that you would
          obliterate it, and put it out of existence if you had the power
          to nullify and destroy it, I say that if you imbibe that spirit
          and feeling, you will go to hell, just as sure as you are living
          women. Emma took that revelation, supposing she had all there
          was; but Joseph had wisdom enough to take care of it, and he had
          handed the revelation to Bishop Whitney, and he wrote it all off.
          After Joseph had been to Bishop Whitney's he went home, and Emma
          began teasing for the revelation. Said she--"Joseph, you promised
          me that revelation, and if you are a man of your word you will
          give it to me." Joseph took it from his pocket and said--"Take
          it." She went to the fire-place and put it in, and put the candle
          under it and burnt it, and she thought that was the end of it,
          and she will be damned as sure as she is a living woman. Joseph
          used to say that he would have her hereafter, if he had to go to
          hell for her, and he will have to go to hell for her as sure as
          he ever gets her.
          You sisters may say that plural marriage is very hard for you to
          bear. It is no such thing. A man or woman who would not spend his
          or her life in building up the kingdom of God on the earth,
          without a companion, and travel and preach valise in hand, is not
          worthy of God or his kingdom, and they never will be crowned,
          they cannot be crowned; the sacrifice must be complete. If it is
          the duty of a husband to take a wife, take her. But it is not the
          privilege of a woman to dictate the husband, and tell who or how
          many he shall take, or what he shall do with them when he gets
          them, but it is the duty of the woman to submit cheerfully. Says
          she--"My husband does not know how to conduct himself, he lacks
          wisdom--he does not know how to treat two wives and be just."
          That all may be true, but it is not her prerogative to correct
          the evil, she must bear that; and the woman that bears wrong--and
          any number of them do in this order--patiently, will be crowned
          with a man far above her husband; and the man that is not worthy,
          and who does not prove himself worthy before God, his wife or
          wives will be taken from him and given to another, so the woman
          need not worry. It is the man who has need to worry and watch
          himself, and see that he does right. Where is the man who has
          wives, and all of them think he is doing just right to them? I do
          not know such a man; I know it is not your humble servant. If I
          would only be dictated by women I should make a hell of it; but I
          cannot be, I can humor them and treat them kindly, but I tell
          them I shall do just what I know to be right, and they may help
          themselves the best they can. I do not say that in so many words,
          but that is what I mean, and I let them act it out.
          It is time to close this meeting. I say to the brethren and
          sisters, peace be with you, and may God bless you. If you walk
          humbly before him so as to enjoy his Spirit, it will lead into
          all truth. I have one little sermon to the Bishops, Bishop Young
          and all the rest of them, and to the Elders. I want to see a
          pattern set for this holy order, and I give to each one of them a
          mission to go and call together five, ten, twenty or fifty
          families, and organize a complete organization, and show the rest
          of us how to live.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / George
          Albert Smith, October 11, 1874
                        George Albert Smith, October 11, 1874
                        REMARKS BY PRESIDENT GEORGE A. SMITH,
           Delivered at the Semi-Annual Conference of the Church of Jesus
                                      Christ of
          Latter-day Saints, in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, Sunday
                                  October 11, 1874
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          I have been much interested in the remarks of the Elders this
          morning, as all through the Conference, and I hope the
          instructions we have received will be treasured up in the hearts
          of all, and carried home to our households and wards, and that
          the Elders who have attended Conference will stir up the people
          to diligence, teach them to remember the Sabbath day and to keep
          it holy, and instead of fooling away their time in labor or
          pleasure, to devote that day to the worship of God and to rest,
          according to the original design of heaven. We should remember
          our prayers at all times in our families, we should also remember
          to observe the word of wisdom, and be careful to continually
          pursue such a course as will entitle us to the blessings of the
          Lord, and that his Spirit may unceasingly abide in our hearts. As
          members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints we
          should let our light shine before men, by observing the
          principles which we profess to have obeyed. We need not be
          troubled because false reports are sent abroad into the world
          concerning us; this has been the universal lot of Saints in all
          ages of the world. The Savior said--"Blessed are ye when men
          shall persecute you and say all manner of evil against you
          falsely for my name's sake." If we are only conscious within
          ourselves that these charges are false we need not fear, and we
          should never hesitate to lift up our voices among the children of
          men in bearing testimony of the truth revealed in these latter
          days, through the Prophet Joseph Smith.
          We are anxious to publish the standard works of the Church to a
          greater extent than hitherto. Some of them have been republished,
          and other are in progress, and we wish to have the co-operation
          of the Saints, generally, throughout the Territory, in helping on
          this work. Our publications should be in every family of the
          Saints, and we wish to exercise that kind of influence in the
          midst of our people that will lead them to make themselves
          acquainted with the contents of the Bible, Book of Mormon, Book
          of Doctrine and Covenants, and such other works as are or have
          been published illustrative of the principles of life and
          salvation made known in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, that they may
          be more generally understood by those professing to be Latter-day
          We expect, before the conference closes, to call a considerable
          number of Elders to go and preach the Gospel in the United
          States. There have been but few missionaries sent to the States,
          and the present generation there have, to a great extent, formed
          their notions of us and our faith from the false reports sent
          through the press; and as we all know that notions so formed can
          not be other than erroneous, we shall call a considerable number
          of Elders to go and travel through the States, representing the
          Gospel in its true light, and bearing testimony to the truth,
          that the generation that have grown up since we were driven into
          the wilderness, may learn and know for themselves the facts
          concerning us.
          We are laboring, as has been referred to by some of the brethren
          who have addressed the Conference, to build a Temple in St.
          George, and one in this city. The work is moving on in both
          places. I feel quite gratified at the success of the workmen the
          present season on the Temple here. Taking the granite from the
          boulders in the mountains, bringing it here, cutting the blocks,
          placing the pillars in position, and getting everything in the
          mechanical style that it is, in the last two years, is perfectly
          wonderful to me. The erection of a Temple like this is a great
          work, it requires a vast amount of means, energy and skill. We
          have not had as much means to sustain the brethren who have been
          laboring upon it as we anticipated, in consequence of the change
          of the times, and the failure of some to come forward and pay
          their Tithing and thereby supply the demand. Yet we have moved
          the work forward gloriously. Brother Pinnock has the gates open,
          and I invite the Bishops and all the brethren and sisters from
          distant places to go and see the beautiful work we have done on
          that Temple; and while you are inspecting what has been done try
          and realize the amount of labor and means that have been required
          to accomplish it. Think of the millions of dollars that King
          Solomon expended in building the foundation of his Temple, and of
          the heavy tax it was upon the people; and then, if you want to
          compare his work with ours, think of the manner in which we are
          carrying this forth. I wish the Saints, also, when visiting the
          Temple, to raise their hearts in prayer to the Most High, that he
          will bless the efforts that are being made to rear a house to his
          holy name. We invite all the brethren and sisters to contribute
          their monthly offerings in money, that these workmen may have a
          portion of their wages in money, and such necessaries as can not
          be obtained without it. For a considerable portion of the present
          season the Temple workmen have had to do almost entirely with
          home products. Some of them have stuck to it faithfully, others
          have been compelled to quit. In fact, for want of means, we were
          under the necessity at one time of dismissing fifty hands. But we
          have kept the work moving, and if the brethren will go and see
          what we have done they can but be surprised and delighted. It is
          a glorious work, and one that is to be dedicated to the Most High
          God. Then let our hearts be lifted to him in prayer that this
          work may continue, that we may be protected from the wrath of our
          enemies and from the vengeance of the wicked one, and be able to
          complete this Temple and dedicate it, that the glory of the Lord
          may rest upon it, the various quorums of the Priesthood be
          organized within it, and that we and our children may be
          permitted to enter its sacred precincts, and receive the
          ordinances of the Priesthood and the blessings of the Gospel of
          peace which can be received only in a Temple of the Lord.
          I wish to bear my testimony to the principles of the Gospel which
          have been revealed. I never wish to stand before the Saints
          without doing that, for when I was called as one of the Seventies
          to bear testimony to the people, I lifted my hand to heaven and
          said--"If I ever forget to bear testimony to the Gospel of Jesus
          Christ and the true mission of Joseph Smith, let my right hand
          forget its cunning and my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth."
          From that day to this I always remember to bear my testimony when
          I address the people, for I know that this Gospel and plan of
          salvation, revealed by Joseph Smith and taught by the Apostles of
          this Church, is true. Men may say that Brigham Young and his
          Elders of this Church are impostors; but I know that they were
          called by revelation and ordained and set apart to do this work
          through Joseph Smith, and they are the servants of the Most High
          God. They were called to proclaim the Gospel and to administer
          its ordinances, and with all their hearts they have labored to
          accomplish the work assigned them.
          It is written that "Elias was a man subject to like passions as
          we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain, and it
          rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six
          months." This shows that a man of like passions to ourselves may
          obtain faith to perform great and good works, to give wise
          instructions, to proclaim the principles of the everlasting
          Gospel, to bear testimony to the truth, to administer in the work
          of the Lord and bear of his kingdom. And it is our duty, as we
          have already been warned, to exercise faith for those in
          authority that, while they contend with like passions with
          ourselves, they may have the 'Spirit of the Almighty to preserve
          and guide them, and to sustain their hands, and in all cases be
          careful never to be found speaking evil of the Lord's anointed. A
          tattling tongue is a curse, and, as the Apostle James expresses
          it, "is set on fire of hell;" and when we are found speaking evil
          against the servants of God and accusing the brethren we are only
          following in the wake of the wicked one. Let us then avoid these
          things, and learn to speak those thing that are good, upright and
          true, and bear a faithful testimony of the Gospel.
          As I said before, I wish the Saints generally to remember the
          brethren who are laboring on the Temple at St. George. They have
          been working all the season, with very little to supply them, and
          some of them are destitute of clothing, and other necessaries.
          Some of the workmen there have labored on the Temple from the
          very beginning, and the walls are now thirty feet high, and the
          work is going ahead prosperously. We have invited the people in
          every settlement to contribute of their means to continue the
          work, and we have also invited brethren to go down to St. George,
          and labor upon the Temple this winter, that the building may be
          prepared for the roof as soon as possible. It will be a
          magnificent Temple, and will contain all the conveniences of the
          Temples of Kirtland and Nauvoo. It will be one hundred and
          forty-three feet long and ninety-seven wide, and the walls will
          be eighty-eight feet high. It is desirable that the brethren
          contribute their means to supply the wants of those who are
          laboring on that Temple, that they may be encouraged to continue.
          We are anxious to push this Temple forward to completion as early
          as possible. It is not so large nor so elaborate in its design as
          the one in course of erection in this city. St. George is a place
          in which parties living in the northern settlements, who may
          desire to do so, can go an spend the winter, and attend to the
          ordinances of the Priesthood. When that Temple is finished we can
          go down there and be baptized for our dead, receive our
          anointings and ordinances and all the blessings pertaining to the
          Priesthood, and get our records made to perform that great work
          which is placed upon us for the salvation of all the generations
          from the time that the Priesthood was lost, the covenant broken,
          the laws trampled under foot ant the ordinances forsaken, unto
          the present time, for the salvation of all who have died since
          then rests upon us as a generation. But if any of us suffer
          ourselves to be led into darkness by the cunning and craftiness
          of the wicked one or evil spirits, we lose great and glorious
          blessings, and a great an glorious responsibility which is laid
          upon us pertaining to the salvation of ourselves and our
          ancestors. We call upon all the brethren to consider these
          things, and we do not wish any to go and labor on that Temple
          this winter unless they desire to do so, and have got the spirit
          to go in order that they may assist in forwarding the work.
          It is very probable that some who live in the northern
          settlements, who are able to do so, will make a practice of
          spending the winter in St. George, because of the mild pleasant
          weather which prevails there during the winter season. Last
          winter the masons worked on the walls of the Temple all the
          winter, except seven and a half days, when they were prevented by
          rain. But to all who may have any intention of going there to
          spend the winter, I would say, never go with light shoes and thin
          clothing, but take good warm clothing and thick-soled shoes. Do
          not be deceived with the idea that you will find summer weather
          there in the winter season, it is more like pleasant spring
          weather, and when evening comes, good thick warm clothing is
          In speaking of the press I wish to name especially the paper
          published by our sisters--The Woman's Exponent. I feel as though
          I hardly need suggest to the brethren that natural gallantry
          would require them, all through the Territory, to subscribe to
          this little sheet, and I believe that if the brethren would do so
          the paper would be much more widely circulated and would do much
          more good than at present. The brethren should remember that our
          sisters hold the ballot in this country, that they have equal
          influence at the polls with the men, and I certainly think that
          we should patronize them in their press, for I am satisfied that
          the prospects of any man being elected to the Legislature of Utah
          Territory would be very poor if the women were opposed to him,
          for I presume that the women compose a majority of the legal
          voters of the Territory, hence, our natural gallantry and the
          national characteristic to desire office should prompt us to
          sustain their publication.
          I hope also that the brethren, in reflecting upon the
          instructions which have been given during Conference, will not
          forget what has been said in relation to sustaining ourselves
          with our own material. We have mechanics here who can make good
          coffins, yet a great many coffins are imported from the States
          into this Territory, for which the money has to be paid. I say
          that we ought to be ashamed of this, and I here publicly request
          my friends, whoever may live to place me in the ground, to place
          me there in a coffin made of our mountain wood by our own
          mechanics, and I prohibit anybody who may outlive me paying a
          dollar for a coffin for me that is imported from the States. That
          is my sentiment, and I wish it was of every man and woman in the
          Territory. It may be said to be a small matter, but it takes
          thousands of dollars of our money away just to gratify pride.
          Says one--"I am just as good as such a one, and why not I have a
          coffin from Chicago or St. Louis as well as he have one?" This is
          a sentiment resulting purely from pride and love of display,
          which is unworthy of a Latter-day Saint. Carry this principle out
          and it leads us to reject homemade shoes and other articles which
          are far superior to the foreign-made imported articles.
          We have been talking about the United Order, and getting up
          tanneries, shoe shops, &c., and initiatory steps have been taken
          in some of the settlements with these objects in view; but it
          takes time to carry out and successfully accomplish such
          projects. But we can produce these things within ourselves, and
          it is our duty to do it, and instead of manifesting a disposition
          to oppose anything of this kind, we should exert all the
          influence and energy we possess to bring it about, and to make
          ourselves self-sustaining. It is true that the principles of the
          United Order are such that a great portion of our people at the
          present time are not in a condition to take hold of it with all
          they have, for many of them have been foolish enough during the
          success of business for the last four years, instead of paying
          their debts, to launch into business of various kinds and get
          deeper into debt. That class of men have to get their hands
          untied before they can take hold to promote the great project of
          uniting the whole of the Latter-day Saints in all their business
          affairs. But this must be done as fast as possible, and the work
          of making Zion self-sustaining must be regarded as part of the
          work of the Lord; for it is an obligation devolving upon us to
          provide within ourselves labor and the necessaries of life. We
          must take hold of this matter, brethren and sisters, with all our
          hearts, and never let ourselves rest until Zion is independent of
          her enemies and all the world.
          May peace and the light of truth abide with you, that you may
          understand these things and act upon them with all the spirit and
          power of the gospel of peace, is my prayer, in the name of Jesus,
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / Albert
          Carrington, October 11, 1874
                         Albert Carrington, October 11, 1874
                         REMARKS BY ELDER ALBERT CARRINGTON,
           Delivered at the Adjourned Semi-Annual Conference of the Church
           Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, in the New Tabernacle, Salt
                                     Lake City,
                              Sunday, October 11, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                                      GOSPEL A
          I have been much interested during our meetings in this
          Conference, and, with you, I measurably realize the benefits to
          be derived in thus assembling together. In my reflections in
          reference to some remarks that have been made I have been led to
          ask myself--What is crime? Simply a transgression of the law,
          human or divine. What is law? It is, or should be, a rule of
          order founded in justice, for the benefit of those to whom it may
          apply. Now, so far as we are concerned in regard to law, we are
          under divine law, the Gospel, the grand plan of salvation--a law
          that is perfect, plain and simple as well as just, and applicable
          to the whole human family at all times, and in this we should
          rejoice. But we are also under human laws as well, we pertain to
          a number of what are termed human governments, subject, in a
          greater or less degree, to man-made institutions, and are they
          perfect? No, each and every one of them, notwithstanding the
          intelligence possessed by mankind, and their centuries of
          experience, contain the seeds of their own dissolution, and, in
          providence of God, they are all destined, in their times and in
          their seasons, to be superseded by the government and kingdom of
          God upon the earth--a fact at which every human being should
          rejoice. But do they? Does even that portion of the world termed
          Christian rejoice in the ushering in of the kingdom of God upon
          the earth? I am sorry to say, and chagrined for humanity at being
          compelled to say, that all Christendom, almost to a unit, perhaps
          as much a unit on the subject as upon any one thing, although
          they have the Bible in their hands, are opposed to the
          establishment of the government of God upon the earth. What
          folly, absurdity and inconsistency on the part of so-called
          Christendom to oppose that which was devised in the wisdom of the
          Gods in the eternal worlds and which, in its very nature and
          constitution, is calculated to benefit and to promote, to the
          utmost possible degree, the welfare of mankind in all their
          What about the government under which we live? Why, it is one of
          the very best, as to its form, that the human family have ever
          devised. It was founded by excellent, honorable, upright, liberal
          and high-minded men who, in framing the constitution, were
          measurably inspired by that Holy Spirit which our Father in the
          heavens bestows upon whom he will. That is the view that we, as
          Latter-day Saints, have in regard to the fundaments or basic
          instrument of the government of the United States termed the
          Constitution; and however much we may be misrepresented, maligned
          or lied about in regard to that matter, as a people we are loyal
          to the constitution to the minutest principle therein contained.
          We understand that constitution--its spirit as well as its
          letter--and, so far as it is observed, it is a very excellent
          instrument for the conducting of human affairs. We are a people
          that uphold that constitution, and we ever have done so, and take
          great pleasure in doing so, and so also with every constitutional
          law; and I am at the defiance of the wide world to truthfully
          controvert the statement that we, as Latter-day Saints, have ever
          transgressed one single particle of constitutional law, or have
          ever had any occasion to do so, or ever will have in obeying the
          principles of the Gospel and laboring to build up and establish
          the kingdom of God on the earth. What do you think of that? The
          world will tell you that we are a terrible set, that we are
          disloyal, ignorant, stupid, fanatical, bigoted, deceivers and
          deceived, and in all these statements and as many more about the
          Latter-day Saints, the world will lie like the devil.
          Now, you heard me say constitutional law. Mark it well. I
          understand, as a general thing, somewhat of what I am saying when
          I speak, and I made use of the expression understandingly. The
          constitutional laws of this government, what are they? They are
          laws enacted in pursuance of the principles couched in that
          constitution under the authority given the Congress of our nation
          to enact laws for the whole United States, and to make treaties
          for our government. All that is beyond that one hair's breadth is
          just that far usurpation, tyranny and wrong. Have we obeyed that,
          more or less? Oh, no doubt; we have had to do so now these many
          years. In the days of the stripling Joseph, when he was first
          called of God to bring forth this great latter-day work that the
          Lord our God has set his hand to accomplish, he was assailed
          unconstitutionally, so far as the constitution of the State of
          New York was concerned, by the citizens of that State; and again,
          the same thing occurred in Ohio, in Missouri, and, finally, in
          Illinois, where, contrary to the plighted faith of the governor
          of the State, he was slain by a mob, because, according to their
          own testimony, the law could not reach him for he had lived above
          it. What right, then, had they to assail or interrupt him? No
          right whatever.
          Now, we as a people, left the States, and I may say we left
          Christendom, from the simple fact that we were obliged to do so
          in order to live our religion. But would they let us alone after
          we had left the States? No. After having aided in the conquest of
          the very region to which we fled to avoid persecution and
          religious tyranny, they were not satisfied even then to leave us
          unmolested to worship the true and living God according to the
          dictates of our own consciences; but they have followed us as a
          nation, and are following us to this day--a professed Christian
          nation is trying to force upon us the tyranny and oppression of
          unconstitutional law, administered by officers for whose
          appointment there is not a scintilla of right under the
          constitution. What do you think of that? And we are enduring
          their interference with our domestic affairs with as much
          patience as we may. We have endured these things with
          considerable patience for many long years, and I trust that we
          shall still be able to do so, realizing that patience is one of
          the great requirements of our Father concerning us as his
          children. He desires that we should be longsuffering towards
          those who seek to afflict and oppress us, as he is longsuffering
          towards the human family in their wickedness and waywardness, and
          we must become like unto him in these respects if we are his; and
          if we expect to become perfect in our sphere as he is in his, we
          not only have to be patient and longsuffering, but we shall have
          to continue in patience and longsuffering. Will we do so? I trust
          so, knowing the blindness, ignorance, bigotry, superstition, and
          consequent intolerance of our fellow beings; knowing also that
          they as well as we are answerable to the Lord our God, being
          careful, while leaving events in the hands of the Supreme Ruler,
          that our conduct, day by day, is such that it will bear, not only
          the strictest examination and scrutiny of our fellow-beings, but
          also of our Father and his angels; realizing, also, now as
          anciently, that whosoever will live godly in Christ Jesus, must
          needs suffer persecution. Do not forget that this is in the very
          nature of things, from the simple fact that, in order to
          constitute this a probation, wickedness has been permitted upon
          the earth, and hence good and evil; and wickedness is and ever
          has been aggressive, tyrannical, oppressive, cruel and murderous,
          and so it will ever continue to be. Do not forget these plain
          facts, and when you hear the wicked lie, and see them strive to
          oppress you and to deprive you of your rights do not get
          impatient about it and fancy that it is anything new, but
          remember that it has ever been so since the days of Cain, and
          that it will continue until wickedness is swept from this
          footstool of Jehovah, and not before that time can we hope to
          cease to be oppressed and wronged. And this is necessary to prove
          whether we will endure all things, as the great Captain, pattern,
          and exemplar of our faith and the great High Priest of our
          salvation endured, in his time. He was buffeted, scourged and
          mobbed and let like a lamb to the slaughter--a being in whom was
          no guile, who finally terminated his mortal career by a cruel
          death on the cross. He was opposed by his own when he came to
          call and gather them as their king and ruler. Who were his own?
          The tribes of Israel, and he came more particularly to the most
          stubborn and stiffnecked of all the tribes--the tribe of Judah.
          And did the scribes and pharisees, and rabbins and lawyers, and
          wise, intelligent and noble hail and welcome him? No, most
          assuredly not; then how much less need we expect that they will
          hail and welcome us, his professed followers! When, instead of
          himself, his word, through the Prophet Joseph Smith, came to
          Christendom with its almost numberless free schools and its
          millions of bibles and legions of priests, did the people hail
          that word? No, they spurned it, and in every conceivable way
          derided him who brought it; and, as in the days of the Savior,
          the Priests, the pharisees and sadducees, the lawyers and
          scribes, the wise in their own estimation and the wealthy all
          banded together to keep from the children of men he word of God,
          which is truth, and which is the power of God unto salvation to
          all who will believe and obey it. Are not these facts? I know
          they are, though the whole world may gainsay I know that I am
          telling you the truth, as God lives I know it for myself.
          Now, then, with regard to these matters that we are immediately
          passing through--the attempted enforcement of laws that are not
          constitutional and, through not being constitutional, that are
          not valid, and consequently of no force or effect whatever, in
          justice, what are we going to do about it? I trust that we will
          endure, with all patience, whatever the Lord our God may permit
          the evil one and those who, through the exercise of their agency,
          list to serve him, to accomplish; and while enduring with all
          patience, that we seek, in all faithfulness and uprightness for
          the guidance of his Holy Spirit to lead us in the path of truth
          and to enable us to walk therein, and to endure meekly and
          patiently all things that he in his providence may see fit to
          place upon us, in order to prove whether we as individuals and as
          a people will serve him in evil as well as in good report. Is
          there anything bigoted or contrary to the principles of eternal
          truth as taught by the Savior and his Apostles in all this? No.
          Then why not the world turn to the Lord our God, and live? Why
          not, Latter-day Saints, for our own sakes, live faithfully,
          humbly and uprightly and in all respects honor the requirements
          of the Gospel, until we become powerful through good works and
          able to meet with joy, and coming of the Savior, and prepared to
          hail with gladness the society and companionship of just men made
          perfect, being worthy to associate with them and to share in
          their blessings, and finally, be saved in the celestial kingdom
          of our Father? That this may be our lot is my prayer, in the name
          of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 /
          Charles C. Rich, October 11, 1874
                          Charles C. Rich, October 11, 1874
                         DISCOURSE BY ELDER CHARLES C. RICH,
           Delivered at the Adjourned Semi-Annual Conference of the Church
                                      of Jesus
            Christ of Latter-day Saints, in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake
                              Sunday, October 11, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          I have rejoiced in listening to the instructions that we have
          received this morning, as well as during the whole of this
          Conference. It seems to me that they ought to make an everlasting
          impression upon the minds of the Saints, and that we, one and
          all, should be determined, under the influence thereof, to live
          more faithfully, and to keep the commandments of God as near as
          possible in all things; and I have no doubt that this is the
          feeling, at the present time, of most of those who have attended
          this Conference. It is for us to guard against temptation that
          may be presented before us, and, when we leave this place, that
          we suffer not ourselves to do or to say anything that is wrong,
          but be willing, with an eye single to the glory of God, to carry
          out the counsels of his servants, and to perform all the labors
          required at our hands in aiding to advance his cause and to build
          up his kingdom upon the earth, that we may prepare ourselves for
          that which is to come both on the earth and in the eternal
          worlds. I know very well that there is no being upon the earth
          who is thus engaged, but what feels well; all such rejoice in
          their labors, and the Spirit and power of God will rest upon the
          Saints when they take this course and adopt this policy.
          We have been permitted to live in one of the most auspicious
          times or dispensations that has ever been ushered in upon the
          earth--the dispensation of the gathering together of all things
          in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth. We
          may feel our weakness and inability, but it is not our strength
          or wisdom that is to bring about the triumph of the purposes of
          God upon the earth, we are simply co-workers with our heavenly
          Father, and his power will bear off his Saints in the future as
          it has done in the past and up to the present time. It is upon
          his arm that we have to lean, and in him we must put our trust.
          When has there been a time when the Saints have trusted in God
          and been disappointed? Never; inasmuch as we have done our part,
          the Almighty has never failed to do his and fulfill his promises.
          We have the power to carry on this work and to perfect ourselves,
          and also to perform a labor for our benefit and for the benefit
          of our friends who lived before us, who did not have such an
          opportunity as we have. This should be impressed upon our minds,
          and we should not suffer ourselves to neglect any duty that is
          incumbent upon us, whether for our benefit or for the benefit of
          those who have lived before us. When we pass behind the vail and
          meet with our friends, if we can tell them that, while we were in
          the flesh, we attended to and performed certain ordinances and
          ceremonies in their behalf which they, while here, had not the
          privilege of attending to and performing for themselves, and
          which they had not power to accomplish in the spirit world, it
          certainly will be a matter of rejoicing to us and also to them;
          but if, on meeting them there, we have to admit that we neglected
          to do that for their benefit which it had been in our power to
          attend to, we shall not feel pleasant, and our friends will most
          assuredly be disappointed.
          In speaking of the Temples now in course of erection in which to
          perform the ordinances for the dead, our hearts ought to be
          inspired with determinations to do all we can to push them
          forward to completion, that, in our day, while we yet live in the
          flesh, we may have the privilege of doing a work therein for our
          dead friends as well as for ourselves. All these things are
          before us, and our eyes should be single to the glory of God, and
          our hearts set upon building up his kingdom upon the earth, and
          not upon objects that do not tend in this direction. I have felt,
          for many years, that I was not safe in any place or upon any
          errand, and had no business to be engaged in any labor, no matter
          what it might be, unless that business, errand or labor was
          directed by the Priesthood; and I feel to-day that all the labors
          and operations of the Latter-day Saints, temporal and spiritual,
          ought to be organized and directed by the Priesthood which God
          has established to lead his people. If our labors are thus
          directed they will tell in the right direction--for the
          upbuilding of the kingdom of God, and not for the promotion of
          evil upon the earth. This is a thing against which we should be
          continually on our guard. Human nature is weak, and many people
          when brought in contact with evil influences are liable to be led
          away, they are in danger, and the best, the safest policy is to
          keep away from dangerous ground and beyond the range of evil, and
          we should not associate with those whose influence is evil.
          Our lives are made up of small items, of labors performed a
          little at a time. If our acts are good, if our words are such
          that the righteous can approve of them, we need not fear when
          they are summed up and judgment rendered, for our lives having
          been spent in the performance of good deeds, it will be all right
          with us, and if we have this consciousness we can rejoice
          wherever we are. I can bear testimony that I have never been
          disappointed when I have been engaged in the work of the Lord,
          and in carrying out the counsels of his servants unto me. I can
          bear testimony that this is the work of God, and that Joseph
          Smith was a Prophet of God, that Brigham Young is a Prophet of
          God, and that the Gospel which they have preached to the
          Latter-day Saints is the Gospel of the Son of God; and inasmuch
          as we live according to its precepts we shall be delivered from
          evil. Salvation is revealed in the Gospel, and that salvation
          commenced to be received by us when we obeyed it. We can be freed
          from our sins when we learn and obey the truth, for in the Gospel
          there is deliverance from sin if we will but apply its principles
          to our lives. When we find a difficulty in the midst of the
          people, it is simply because some one or more have done that
          which they ought not to have done, and had they applied the
          principles of the Gospel applicable to that particular case, the
          difficulty might have been avoided. When we practice the
          principles of this Gospel to perfection, we shall be delivered
          from evil, whether in this world or in the world to come. For
          instance, if no murders are committed, none of the evils will be
          experienced which grow out of that crime; if the people generally
          would cease lying, the evil now resulting because of the great
          prevalence of falsehood in the world would be unknown. And so we
          might enumerate all of the evils that are committed by the human
          family and say that, if the principles of the Gospel of Christ
          were universally observed, the evils of every kind now so
          abundant in all parts of the world would be known no more. Then
          it is for us, to whom this Gospel has been revealed, to learn
          what is right, and to be faithful in practicing it, and the more
          faithful we are in applying ourselves to this important duty, the
          more speedily will evil disappear from amongst us, and the
          salvation promised by the Gospel be by us enjoyed, and that is
          precisely what we want--a present as well as an eternal salvation
          by an application of the principles of the Gospel to our daily
          If this course were pursued by mankind generally, it would soon
          bring about a millennium, or that still more happy time spoken of
          by the Prophets, when the knowledge of God shall cover the earth
          as the waters cover the great deep, and when men in all the world
          over are friends and brothers. This is the direction in which the
          practice of the principles of the Gospel leads us, and a
          continued and close attention thereto will enable us to overcome
          every imperfection. At the same time our heavenly Father is
          disposed to try those who profess to have taken upon them the
          name of Christ, and, in fact, he is trying us continually in
          order to prove whether we will serve him in all things. If an
          evil is presented before us, we must either receive or reject it.
          If we reject it we have overcome; if we accept it, we are
          overcome of evil. And we may say that we have continually a trial
          before us, and it is for us to be on our guard that we enter not
          into temptation, and that we are not overcome, no matter in what
          guise or how temptingly evil may present itself to us. We need to
          be valiant before the lord, valiant in testimony, valiant in
          keeping his commandments, valiant in rejecting every evil
          principle and practice that may be presented before us; and if
          this is our course and we continue therein, the time will come
          when we will be counted worthy of an inheritance and exaltation
          among the sanctified in the presence of our father.
          I feel to rejoice in the principles of the Gospel that the Lord
          has revealed to us, and that, many years ago I had the privilege
          of hearing and obeying them. I can say that, from that time until
          the present, I have never had the first moment's sorrow because
          of anything that I have been called to pass through in connection
          with the Gospel, and I hope I never shall. My experience in this
          cause and kingdom has been a source of continual rejoicing, and I
          believe it will be so to the end. I trust brethren and sisters
          that this is also your experience, and that you and I may
          continue faithful to the end, that we may be counted worthy of
          the privilege of mingling with that great company of the
          sanctified and just whom we have heard spoken of this morning,
          and that with them we may receive a crown of glory and
          immortality. This is my prayer in the name of the Lord Jesus.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / John
          Taylor, October 9, 1874
                            John Taylor, October 9, 1874
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER JOHN TAYLOR,
          Delivered at the Semi-Annual General Conference of the Church of
              Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, in the New Tabernacle,
                 Salt Lake City, Friday Afternoon, October 9, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          In our assemblies at conference the representatives of the people
          from the various parts of the Territory meet together to be
          informed in relation to any and all measures that may be
          determined upon for the furtherance of our interests as a people,
          and the interests of the Church and kingdom of God upon the
          earth; for the Church and kingdom of God is established upon the
          earth, and God has communicated unto us his will, and, by
          revelation, has instructed us how to organize the various orders
          of the Priesthood as they have been presented before you to-day.
          I feel that we are acting in the presence of God and of the holy
          angels, and that we are operating for our own welfare, the
          welfare of our ancestors and, in part, for the welfare of the
          millions who have lived upon the earth, and for the introduction
          of principles which have emanated from God, which are calculated
          to regenerate, evangelize and redeem the world in which we live.
          There is something peculiar in the relationship that we sustain
          to each other, to those who have gone before us, to our God and
          to the building up of his kingdom. We are not acting for
          ourselves individually, but in the interests and for the benefit
          of all men that have ever lived upon the earth, as well as of
          those now living upon it.
          We are acting in conjunction with the Almighty, with Apostles and
          Prophets and men of God who have lived in the various ages of the
          world, to accomplish the great programme that God had in his mind
          in relation to the human family before the world existed, and
          which will as assuredly come to pass as God lives. We feel, at
          the same time, that we are encompassed with the infirmities,
          weaknesses, imperfections and frailties of human nature, and in
          many instances we err in judgment, and we always need the
          sustaining hand of the Almighty; the guidance and direction of
          His Holy Spirit, and the counsel of his Priesthood that we may be
          led and preserved in the path that leads to life eternal; for it
          is the desire of all Latter-day Saints to keep the commandments
          of God, live their religion, honor their profession and magnify
          their calling, and so prepare themselves for an inheritance in
          the celestial kingdom of God.
          We have had presented before us to-day, the Church authorities.
          This may seem to many of us a mere matter of form; but it is at
          the same time a matter of fact, and one in which we are
          individually and collectively interested. It presents to our
          minds a train of reasoning, ideas, thoughts and reflections which
          men generally do not experience. Here is a President and his
          council, here are the Twelve, the Bishops, High Priests,
          Seventies, Elders and the various authorities and councils of the
          Church upon the earth--the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day
          Saints. What is that Church? Is it a phantom, a theory, an
          ideality, something that has been got up by the schools, by the
          wise men and philosophers of the day? No, it is something that
          emanates from God, that had its origin with him. It is to him
          that we are indebted for all the light, intelligence and
          knowledge that we possess. How did we know that we needed a
          President? God told us. How did we know that we needed
          counselors? The Lord told us. How did we know that it was
          necessary that there should be a Twelve in the Church and kingdom
          of God? The Lord told us. How did we know that there should be
          quorums of the Seventies, High Priests, Elders, High Councils,
          and all these various organizations? The Lord told us, and we
          have come together and passed upon these principles, and have
          united together in the Commonwealth of Israel. And when we talk
          about this Priesthood, as has been very properly remarked by one
          of the speakers during the Conference, why, we all of us belong,
          more or less, thereto. It is emphatically that which was spoken
          of in the days of Moses--a kingdom of Priests. We are in reality
          a kingdom of Priests, and we are in possession of principles that
          will endure throughout all eternity. We are associated with men
          who have lived before us, and who are connected with the same
          ministry and calling as we possess, and they are operating with
          us and we with them for the accomplishment of certain objects
          which God has in view. And who of us can point out the path
          wherein we should walk? Who of us can direct our steps in
          relations to the great principles that lie before us? We need the
          guidance, instruction, intelligence and revelation that flow from
          heaven to lead us. We have needed them to bring us thus far. When
          the Lord got angry with the children of Israel because of their
          follies, and said, "I will not go up with you, but my spirit
          shall go with you," Moses might well plead and say--"O God, if
          thou goest not up with us carry us not up hence." He felt--what
          can we do, what course shall we pursue unless the Lord directs
          us? We, the Latter-day Saints are in the same position--unless
          the Lord guides us we are in a poor fix.
          Now then, what were Apostles, Prophets, Pastors, Teachers,
          Evangelists and other officers placed in the Church for in former
          days? Paul tells us for the perfecting of the Saints, for the
          work of the ministry, and for the edifying of the body of Christ
          until we all come to a unity of the faith, to the knowledge of
          the Son of God, unto the fullness of the stature of a perfect man
          in Christ, that we be no more children, tossed about with every
          wind of doctrine, and the cunning craftiness whereby men lie in
          wait to deceive, and that we may grow up in him, our living head,
          in all things. What are Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, Pastors,
          Teachers, &c., placed in the Church now for? For precisely the
          same reasons that they were then, only much more so, for they
          were connected with a system that had to succumb to the
          adversary, and to be rooted out--a certain power was to rise up
          and was to prevail against them; but it is not so with us--our
          course is onward. We are connected with that little stone that
          was hewn out of the mountain without hands, and that was to
          continue to roll until it filled the whole earth. That is the
          position that we occupy, and it is said that the kingdom shall
          not be given into the hands of another people.
          These several officers, we are told, were placed in the Church
          for the perfecting of the Saints--we need their labors; they are
          for the work of the ministry--we need a little of it; they are
          for the edifying of the body of Christ--we need edifying. How
          long? Until we all come in the unity of the faith, and until we
          are perfect in the knowledge of the Son of God. We are not quite
          there yet. There is a little faltering, shaking, tottering and
          stumping like babes amongst us once in a while, and we need the
          sustaining hand, and instruction of God to support us and help us
          to pass along in the path marked out for us. He had led us along
          remarkably, and he has united us to a certain extent in many
          things, and there is something pleasant and delightful in union.
          We have done a good deal in being united. Here are many of these
          Elders around me who have been ready, in any moment, to go
          anywhere, just as these Elders who have been called to-day to go
          to the States, England, Scotland, France, Germany, Spain,
          Portugal, or any other part of the earth, to preach the Gospel,
          build up settlements or whatever else they are required to do in
          order to further the purposes and to build up the kingdom of God
          upon the earth. I was very much pleased at a meeting we had the
          other evening in the Tabernacle, to learn that over three hundred
          men could be found who would go down to St. George this winter,
          find their own food and work as teamsters, carpenters,
          stone-cutters, and in other callings necessary to forward the
          work on the Temple. That shows there is something like union
          among the Latter-day Saints. I like to see principles of that
          kind operating among us, it shows that we possess a portion of
          the spirit of the work, and that we appreciate the Gospel. And we
          have done a good deal of this kind of thing heretofore. Many of
          you remember what took place when we left Far West. When our
          people there had been robbed of everything that the thieves could
          get hold of, they put the balance of their means together to help
          one another out, until there was not a man left who wanted to
          leave the State. We agreed to do that and we did it. Then,
          afterwards, when we left Nauvoo, we covenanted, in the Temple
          that we built there, that we would never cease our endeavors
          until every man who wanted to leave that country and come here
          had had the opportunity, and that we would assist him in doing
          so. Did we carry it out? We did, and we were united in our
          efforts, and we did a good many things besides what we promised
          to do. We have sent as many as five hundred teams at a time from
          here with provisions and other necessaries, to bring the poor
          from the frontiers to this land, before the railroad was in
          existence; and since then we have operated and co-operated with
          our means to bring them by the railroad. So far as these things
          are good, honorable and praiseworthy.
          Then again, we are a good deal united in our doctrinal affairs,
          and we begin to feel that we are part of God's creation, that we
          are operating in this particular day and age of the world to
          accomplish a certain work, and that work is not for our own
          individual interests alone, it is not to build up and aggrandize
          ourselves, but it is to build up the kingdom of God and to
          forward his purposes upon the earth. That is what we are here
          for. You might talk about principle to a great many men until
          your heads turned gray and your tongues cleave to the roofs of
          your mouths, and it would make no difference--they are not
          prepared to receive it. But the Latter-day Saints are to a very
          great extent. Why? Because the very first thing that God did with
          us was to get us converted, to get us baptized and in a position
          where we could receive the Holy Ghost, and then we were placed in
          what some people call en rapport with God--brought into
          communication and relationship with him so that we could
          recognize him as our Father and friend, and we are his friends;
          and he and we, the others who have lived and died here on the
          earth, who obeyed the same principles that we have obeyed, are
          all operating together for the accomplishment of the purposes of
          God on the earth. That is what we are doing. It is a great work,
          and, everyone of us needs to ponder the path of our feet, to mark
          well the course that is laid out to us and seek to do the will of
          our heavenly Father. We are living in a critical and an important
          age. Men sometimes are astonished when they see the corruption,
          wickedness and evil, the departure from honesty and integrity,
          and the villainy that everywhere exist; but why should they be?
          Have we not been preaching for the last thirty or forty years
          that the world would grow "worse and worse, deceiving and being
          deceived?" Has it not been preached to us that the nations of the
          earth had the elements of destruction within themselves and that
          they were bound to crumble? And when we see honor trampled under
          foot, and integrity and truth standing afar, off, while the
          wicked, corrupt and froward manage and direct affairs, we may
          expect that the axe is laid at the root of the tree and that it
          is decaying and will soon fall. And that is what is being
          accomplished among the nations today. We need not whine or think
          there is anything strange or remarkable about it. We have
          expected these things to transpire, and they will be a great deal
          worse than they are to-day. But we are engaged in introducing
          correct principles, and we are trying to get united. We are
          united, as I said before, in many things, for the religion that
          we have embraced, in its spiritual signification, brings us into
          communication one with another, and helps us to love one another,
          and I wish there was a little more of that disposition among us,
          and that we loved one another a little better, and studied one
          another's interests a little more. I wish we could sympathize
          with our brethren, and be full of loving-kindness and generosity
          one towards another. I wish that we could feel that brotherly
          live continued, and that it was spreading and increasing, flowing
          from the fountain of life--from God--from heart to heart as oil
          is poured from vessel to vessel, that harmony, sympathy, kindness
          and love might be universal among us. This is what the Gospel
          will do for us if we will only let it. Said Jesus, when speaking
          to the woman of Samaria--"If thou hadst asked of me I would have
          given thee water that should have been in thee a well springing
          up to everlasting life." Let us drink a little more deeply of our
          religion, it leads us to God, it opens up a communication between
          us and our Father, whereby we are enabled to cry "Abba Father."
          The principles of the Gospel that we have embraced reach into
          eternity, they penetrate behind the veil where Christ our
          forerunner has gone, if we are living our religion and keeping
          the commandments of God; and wherever the influence of this
          Gospel is exerted it binds people together, and at the same time
          unites them with their God who rules in heaven, and with Jesus
          the Mediator of the New Covenant, and with the heavenly throng,
          and their minds are illuminated until, like the vision of Jacob's
          ladder, they can see the angels of God ascending and descending,
          carrying messages to and from God and his people. Said Jesus,
          about the last thing when he was leaving the earth--"Father, I
          pray for those whom thou hast given me, and not for these only,
          but for all who shall believe on me through their word, that they
          all may be one, even as I and the Father are one, that they may
          be one in us"--one in sentiment, feeling, desire and action for
          the accomplishment of the purposes of God, whether in the heavens
          or upon the earth.
          Can we conceive of these things? We have little glimpses in
          relation to them sometimes, by which we are enabled to form a
          very faint idea of the effect of that unity which exists in
          heaven, and of the unity that ought to exist on earth. What can
          bring this latter about? Some speculative theory? No. We want, in
          the first place, to have our hearts united to God; we want to
          have the Spirit of God planted in our bosoms; we want to have the
          power of the Gospel in our households; we want a union with our
          God, and everyone of us to feel as one felt formerly--"As for me
          and my house, we will serve the Lord." As a starting point, we
          each of us must feel--"No matter what others do, I and my house
          will fear God, keep his commandments, and do that which is right
          in his sight, and in the sight of holy angels." And what then?
          Why, we will do everything else that God wants us. If it is to
          build Temples? Yes. Is it profitable? God knows best about that.
          If it does not make much money, it brings something in the heart
          that the world cannot give and that man cannot take away--it
          gives peace and joy and satisfaction, and you feel--"I am of the
          household of faith, I am a child of God, I am carrying out the
          will of my father, and they who have lived and we who now live
          are operating together for the redemption of the living and the
          dead, for the regeneration of the world, for the carrying out of
          the purposes of the great Eloheim, for the introduction of
          principles that will ennoble and exalt man and enable him to
          stand in the dignity of his office, calling and Priesthood as a
          Priest of the Most High God." That is the position that we ought
          to occupy, and that is what we are after. It is not little boys'
          play that we are engaged in, it is a life-long service, and that
          life will last while eternity endures. We want to operate here
          all the time, so that we may have our own approving conscience,
          that we may have the approval of all good, honorable men; that we
          may have the sanction and approval of God and of the holy angels,
          and of the Priesthood who have lived before, and that we may feel
          that we are operating for the general benefit of the world that
          was, that is, or is to come.
          We are called upon once in a while to take a new step in this
          great work. At one time it was polygamy, at another it was
          baptism for the dead, then it was building Temples, then certain
          endowments, then the sealing of our children to us, then certain
          promises made to ourselves, such as God made to Abraham in former
          days, and now it is that we must get a little closer together,
          and be more united in regard to our temporal affairs, that we may
          be prepared to act and to operate in all things according to the
          mind and will of God and this step in advance, like every other,
          has caused us to reflect and ponder, and many of us are full of
          fears and doubts in relation to many things and many men. Well,
          have we all done right? No. Have we all been strictly honest? No.
          Have we all lived our religion? No. Have we all been upright in
          our dealings one with another, and done that which is right in
          the sight of God? No, we have not. What then? Shall we continue
          to do wrong? We are called upon, in this as in many other things,
          to take a new step that is contrary to our tradition, ideas and
          theories; but not contrary to the doctrines that have been taught
          to the Latter-day Saints. But we hardly know, sometimes, how to
          get at these things, how to fix them up, how to put them right.
          We have been trying, since God moved upon his servant Brigham, to
          get things into order, but the ship moves very slowly, there
          seems to be a good many snags of one kind or other in the way.
          Many people are very much misinformed in relation to many of
          these things. There have been a good many things said, and a
          great many ideas in circulation about the order of things that it
          is desired should be established among us. I will tell you some
          of my ideas in relation thereto.
          In the first place, it has been a matter of fact with me, for
          years and years, that such a state of things has to be introduced
          amongst us. I think that is an opinion that prevails very
          generally among the Latter-day Saints, and I do not think there
          is much difference of opinion in relation to it. We have read
          about it in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants. I think there are
          as many as a dozen revelations in that book in reference to this
          subject, and perhaps more than that. I do not propose to quote
          them, however, at the present time. We read an account of the
          City of Enoch, which was established on this principle, and how
          the people acted there; there is also an account of a people who
          former lived on this continent, who carried out the same
          principle; and when this Church was first organized by Joseph
          Smith, these very principles were among the first that he
          introduced to the people and we have had them before us all the
          time, so that we have no need to begin and argue the points at
          all; but I want to come right to matters of fact as they exist
          among us here to-day.
          Many say, "I do not like the thing as it now is, I wish we had it
          as it is laid down in the Book of Doctrine and Covenant." No you
          don't. "Well, we think we do." Well, but you don't, I am sure you
          don't, and I will show you why before I get through. We are
          living in peculiar times--we can not be governed by "Thus saith
          the Lord" independent of other influences. We are associated with
          national and judicial affairs that are opposed to every principle
          that God would reveal or will reveal. That is a fact that I need
          not argue before the Latter-day Saints, they all know it. Well,
          what then? The Spirit of the Lord has operated upon President
          Young to introduce these principles in our midst, that is, as
          near as they can be to conform to the laws of the land, for the
          people in these United States profess to be so pure, you know,
          that they could not think of having anything contrary to law;
          they would never dream of anything of that kind. Why, the people
          of the United States, including their Presidents, Governors and
          rulers, are the most law-abiding people you ever heard of,
          according to their professions, are they not? They can not think
          of doing anything contrary to law.
          Well, we have to go with the general stream; or at lest it is
          necessary that we protect ourselves from legal cormorants, and
          from every man who would devour, tear in pieces and destroy, who
          is after our property and our lives? This class of persons would
          be very glad to take not only the property but the lives of some
          of the leaders of God's people here on the earth; nothing would
          suit them better, they are so holy, pure and law-abiding. These
          are the circumstances that we are placed in. Now what shall be
          done? There are certain principles that emanate from God; but we
          have to protect ourselves in carrying them out, and make them
          conform, as near as we can, to the laws of the land. In the Book
          of Doctrine and Covenants it is said, in the first place, that a
          man shall place his property at the feet of the Bishop. That is
          what it lays down, and you say that is what you would like to do.
          Some would, very many would not. The Bishop, after examining into
          the position and circumstances of the man, and finding out what
          his wants are, and what his capabilities and talents, what the
          size of his family, &c., appoints to him a certain amount of
          means, which he receives as a stewardship. "Well," say some, "how
          does this order you are talking about introducing agree with
          that? Where does the stewardship come in?" I will tell you. We
          have organized this as near as may be on the principles of
          co-operation, and the voice you have in selecting your officers,
          and in voting for them and the stock you hold in these
          institutions is you stewardship. You may say--"Is not that taking
          away our freedom?" I do not think it is. I am not prepared to
          enter into details, but I should say that one-third, perhaps
          one-half, of the wealth of the world is manipulated just in the
          same way. How so? Why, there are among the nations national
          securities of various kinds issued, which are taken by the
          people; we have United States bonds, State bonds, county and city
          bonds in this country as well as in Europe, to which the people
          subscribe and in which they have an interest, all of which is
          voluntary, and the free act of the people; then we have railroad
          bonds, steamship bonds, and we have telegraph, mercantile,
          manufacturing and co-operative associations, which are
          represented by those who hold stock therein, and there are
          hundreds and thousands of millions of dollars throughout the
          world that are operated in this way by financiers, statesmen, men
          of intelligence--merchants, capitalists and others, in every
          grade and condition of life, none of whom consider that here is
          any coercion associated with it. These men all have their free
          What is the modus operandi? For illustration,--a company is
          organized, men subscribe stock into that company, or they
          purchase bonds perhaps from a government for which that
          government pays interest; or, if it is in a company, that company
          manipulates and arranges matters, not the stockholders
          individually, they never think of it; they select the officers to
          do these things for them and all they have to do with it is to
          vote in these officers, each person voting according to the
          amount of stock he holds in the institution. And then they draw
          their dividends at certain specified times. This is the way, I
          presume, that one half or perhaps three quarters of the wealth of
          the civilized world is manipulated to-day.
          Well, is freedom taken from these men? Are the men engaged in
          these operations thieves and robbers? some of them act very
          fraudulently it is true, and the amount of defalcation and fraud
          in our country, of late, is painful to reflect upon; but then,
          they consider they have a perfect right to buy or to sell any of
          this stock, and if parties enter into institutions of any kind,
          mercantile or manufacturing, they must be subject to the rules or
          laws thereof. But the stockholders do not individually operate
          these institutions, and what I wanted to say is, that herein we,
          as they, have our stewardship and freedom of action.
          Well, but you want to manipulate men's time as well? Yes. Will
          they have a vote? They ought to have, and will have if the law
          will let them; the great trouble is that the law will not allow
          us to do everything we would like; but whenever we can get at it
          we shall vote on all these things as you have voted here to-day.
          But we have to evade these things a little now, because the law
          will not allow us to do otherwise.
          Now then, there is another feature connected with this matter.
          You know that, in this order it is not all putting in, there is
          some taking out, and that is a point I want to get at; it would
          be a very nice and beautiful thing if we could carry it out. If,
          as described in the revelation, we could have a general treasury
          from which we could all draw what we needed, and then return it,
          together with our tens, fifties, hundreds and thousands, and all
          act as one family for the general interest of all, it would be a
          very beautiful thing; but everybody is not so honest, pure and
          upright as this state of things demands. If we had a general
          treasury some would be very willing to go the treasurer and
          request so much to enable them, as they would represent, "to
          carry our their stewardship," and he would have to hand it out to
          them according to the provisions made in the Doctrine and
          Covenants; but that would in all probability be the last of it
          with many. Would you business men like to have a system like that
          in the United Order? You say you would like this order carried
          out as it is laid down in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, but
          I say you would not. Would you like every man, simply because he
          was a member of the Order, to have power to go to the treasurer
          and draw out what he thought proper, and use it just according to
          his fancy? No, you would not trust you neighbors as far as that,
          for all men are not capable and all men are not honest and
          conscientious; if they were we should be nearly ready to be
          caught up; but we have not reached that point yet, and
          consequently we have to do the best we can.
          Now I will tell you my opinion. I am living in the 14th Ward; we,
          in that ward, have selected a number of men for our directors,
          and I would just as soon trust these men with the management of
          my property as to manage it myself. I do not believe that every
          man is a thief, scallywag and rascal. I have no such idea. I
          think there is a great deal of honesty, truthfulness and
          integrity, and if there is not it is time we turned over a new
          leaf, and introduced better principles, that we may be governed
          by purer, nobler laws.
          I cannot conceive of anything more beautiful and heavenly than a
          united brotherhood, organized after the pattern laid down in the
          Doctrine and Covenants: when all act for the benefit of all--when
          while we love God with all our hearts we love our neighbor as
          ourselves; where our time, our property, our talents, our mental
          and bodily powers, are all exerted for the good of all; where no
          man grabs or takes advantage of another; where there is a common
          interest, a common purse, a common stock; where as they did on
          this continent, it is said of them that "they all dealt justly to
          each other," and all acted for the general weal, "when every man
          in every place could meet a brother and a friend," when all the
          generous and benevolent influences and sympathies of our nature
          are carried out, and covetousness, arrogance, hatred and pride
          and every evil are subdued, and brought into subjection to the
          will and spirit of God. These principles are very beautiful and
          would be very happifying for a community, a Territory, a State,
          nation or the world.
          Now, then, these things are presented before us, and I suppose we
          shall have to come into them as best we can, and if we ever get
          into the celestial kingdom of God we shall find that they; are
          just such a set of people. If ever we build up a Zion here on
          this continent, and in case Zion ever comes down to us, and we
          expect it will, or that ours will go up to meet it, we have got
          to be governed by the same principles that they are governed by,
          or we can not be one; and if we ever get into the eternal worlds
          we shall have to be heirs of God and joint heirs with Jesus
          Christ; and it would not do for a man of us to go up into heaven
          and say--"Look here, Jesus," or, "Look here, some of you great
          men who manage matters here, I wish you would set me off a place
          by myself, I would like to have my own house and garden and my
          own farming arrangements separate to myself, so that I could
          manage things a little in my own way as I used to, in the place I
          come from." "Well," says the individual addressed--"I do not see
          things exactly in that way. We brought you up here, believing you
          were a pretty decent fellow; but you have got to conform to our
          rules. These things are all ours, we are heirs to God and joint
          heirs with Jesus Christ. This is a joint association, we are
          united together in the one thing, and we are all one, and if you
          want to go off by yourself you will have to leave here." That
          would be just about the position of things, this is the order
          that exists there--they are heirs of God and joint heirs with
          Jesus Christ. This is the position we have to attain to, and to
          do this there will have to be less individuality of feeling than
          there is now, and we must seek to introduce and establish the
          principles of the kingdom of God upon the earth. We are not for
          ourselves; but for the kingdom of God. God called us not to do
          our own will, but his, and we are operating to prepare ourselves
          and our children and all who will be governed by the principles
          of truth for a celestial and eternal glory in the kingdom of our
          "Well, then" says one, "you believe in these things?" I do most
          assuredly. "Do you believe in the authorities?" Yes, I think I
          do,--I have voted for them for a great many years, and by the
          help of God I mean to sustain them still. That is my feeling.
          Brethren, is it yours? Shall we sustain the Elders of Israel, the
          Presidency and the authorities of the Church of Jesus Christ of
          Latter-day Saints? (The congregation answered, "Yes!") All who
          feel like it, say ("Aye," by the congregation). Now let us go and
          carry it out. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / Orson
          Pratt, October 11, 1874
                            Orson Pratt, October 11, 1874
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER ORSON PRATT,
           Delivered at the Adjourned Semi-Annual Conference of the Church
           Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, in the New Tabernacle, Salt
                                     Lake City,
                          Sunday Morning, October 11, 1874.
                           (Reported by David. W. Evans.)
                         BY GOD TO REVEAL HIDDEN MYSTERIES.
          [The speaker took as a foundation for his remarks the 9th, 10th,
          11th, 12th and 13th verses of the 7th chapter of the prophecies
          of Daniel, and the 20th chapter of the revelations of St. John.]
          All Bible believers are looking forward to the time when the
          inhabitants of this creation shall be brought into judgment and
          be judged out of the books which are written, every man according
          to his works. We should rather conclude from these sayings in
          Daniel and in the revelations of St. John, that there is a
          record, or perhaps many records, kept of the works of men--their
          deeds done in this probation. How these records are kept in
          heaven is not for me to say; what language they are recorded in,
          or what are the symbols of the ideas of the heavenly hosts who
          are engaged in recording, how many records there are, etc., is
          not known to us; but from what is written, we can form some
          conclusions in relation to this matter, for we are told in the
          sayings of Jesus, in the New Testament, that for every idle word
          and every idle thought men shall give an account in the great
          judgment day. Hence these words and thoughts must be had in
          remembrance either in books, or impressed upon the minds of
          beings who are capable of retaining all things in their
          remembrance. There must be some way by which the idle words and
          thoughts of the children of men shall be kept in remembrance, and
          if the dead are to be judged out of the books that are to be
          opened, we should naturally draw the conclusion that they are
          memorandum books of the idle words and thoughts of the children
          of men.
          We also read in the Book of Mormon--a record which all Latter-day
          Saints profess to believe in, and consider equally sacred with
          the rest of the word of God that is recorded in the Bible and
          elsewhere--the sayings of Jesus, that were spoken on this
          continent some eighteen hundred years ago. Jesus says--"All
          things are written by the Father." I suppose by his agents, that
          is through his direction, by his authority. "All things are
          written by the Father." Taking all these passages of Scripture
          together, we may look for a general reckoning with all the
          inhabitants of this earth, both the righteous and the wicked. How
          long this day, called the day of judgment, will be, is not
          revealed. It may be vastly longer than what many suppose. It
          seems to me that unless there were a great number engaged in
          judging the dead, it would require a very long period of time;
          for, for one being to personally investigate all the idle
          thoughts and words of the children of men from the days of Adam
          down until that time, it would require a great many millions of
          years, and therefore I come to another conclusion, namely, that
          God has his agents, and that through those agents the dead will
          be judged.
          This reminds me of what was said by the Apostle Paul when
          reproving the ancient Christians for going to law one with
          another. He tries to shame them out of this evil practice by
          referring them to the lowest esteemed among them that were called
          Saints. Says he, in substance--"Let them be your judges, it is
          not necessary for you to go to the highest authorities, but let
          even those who are least among you become judges in regard to
          many of these things that you now take before unbelievers, and
          for which you require a judgment from those who have nothing to
          do with the Saints of God," or rather with the Gospel in which
          they believed. And, in connection with these sayings, he asks
          this question--"Know ye not that the Saints shall judge the
          This reminds me of some sayings that are recorded in the Book of
          Mormon, as also of others contained in the Bible. Jesus said to
          his twelve disciples or Apostles--"You that have followed me in
          the regeneration, when the Son of Man shall come sitting upon the
          throne of his glory, then you shall also sit upon twelve thrones,
          and shall eat and drink in my presence, and shall judge the
          twelve tribes of Israel." It seems, then, that there are certain
          personages to be engaged in judging the world. The Twelve
          Apostles are to judge the twelve tribes of Israel, and the Saints
          will be set to judge the world.
          The Book of Mormon, speaking on the same subject, informs us that
          there are Twelve chosen among the ancient Nephites on this
          American land, and that, while the Twelve chosen by Jesus on the
          continent of Asia were to judge the twelve tribes of Israel, the
          Twelve chosen from among the Nephites should judge the remnant of
          the house of Israel that dwelt on this land.
          Here, then is another quorum of judgment, another council that is
          appointed to judge, and so we might continue the subject and
          bring in all the councils that God has ordained in any generation
          of those whom he has appointed and selected, and ordained with
          power and authority from on high. To them was granted not only
          the privilege of acting here in relation to the ordinances of
          mercy, but hereafter in relation to the ordinances of justice;
          hence both justice and mercy were committed, in some measure into
          the hands of those who were ordained of the Lord. But in these
          respects there is one thing to console the Saints of all ages, as
          well as to console the whole world, and that is, that when the
          final time shall come to judge the children of men whoever the
          agents may be who shall sit in judgment upon their several cases
          they will do it by the inspiration of the Almighty, and hence it
          will be done right.
          This reminds me of what Jesus said to the Twelve who were chosen
          among the Israelites on this continent, eighteen hundred years
          ago. Said he--"Know ye not that ye shall be judges of this
          people? What manner of persons, therefore, ought ye to be, in all
          holiness, and purity and uprightness in heart, if ye are to judge
          this great nation?" In other words--"If you are to sit in
          judgment upon all of their deeds done in the body, and to render
          a righteous decision before the Almighty, how pure, holy, upright
          and honest you twelve disciples ought to be in order to become
          judges indeed of the people, that in judging them you may not
          condemn yourselves."
          Having quoted these passages, which give us a little
          understanding of the purposes of the Almighty in regard to
          judging the world, I will now quote another passage of Scripture
          that has a bearing in some measure upon this subject, showing
          that it was a principle understood by the ancient Saints of God,
          and that the eternal judgment that was to be administered by the
          Saints at some future time was numbered among the first
          principles of Christ. It was not one of those hidden mysteries,
          one of those secret things, one of those wonders that were to be
          searched out by the faithful, but that it was a doctrine numbered
          among the first principles of the oracles of God. I will now,
          leaving the principles of the doctrines of Christ according to
          King James' translation, quote from another translation which I
          have seen, and which I believe to be more correct. The passage to
          which I will direct your attention reads--"Therefore, not leaving
          the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto
          perfection, not laying again the foundation of repentance from
          dead works, of faith towards God and of the doctrine of baptisms,
          and of the laying on of hands, and of the resurrection of the
          dead, and of eternal judgment."
          These principles of the doctrine of Christ were thoroughly
          understood by the faithful ones who lived eighteen hundred years
          ago. They understood that the day would come when God would set
          them, not only to judge the world, but to judge angels. Some
          angels have got yet to be judged, and the Saints will be the
          agents to perform this great work and render the decision of
          judgment. Jesus said to the Twelve among the ancient
          Nephites--"Know ye this, that your judgment"--speaking of their
          judging the Nephite nation--"shall be that judgment which the
          Father shall give unto you;" in other words--"You shall not judge
          by your own natural wisdom; you shall not judge according to the
          outward appearance; but it shall be that judgment which the
          Father shall give unto you." Now, the Lord judges mankind
          according to the law and the testimony. The revealed law is
          delivered to the people, and those to whom it is revealed will be
          judged by that law, hence Jesus says--"My words shall judge you
          at the last day." It is not the tradition of the children of men
          that is going to judge the world, that is not the law. The
          traditions of the children of men are one thing, and the law is
          another things; popular ideas are one thing and the law of God is
          another thing. We are not to be judged by the creeds, doctrines,
          disciplines and articles of faith invented by uninspired men, but
          by the pure law of God as it issued forth from his own mouth and
          by the mouths of his ancient Prophets and Apostles. The
          testimonies will be forthcoming, one of which will be the record,
          the books that are written. Every idle word that is spoken, every
          idle thought that has ever entered into the hearts of man will be
          written and brought up, and out of that record of our
          conduct--our thoughts, words and deeds--will we be judged.
          Now, if there is to be a vast number of individuals engaged in
          the work of judgment, it may be a speedy work; for let all
          mankind be classified--a certain portion delivered over to the
          Apostles of ancient days, another portion to the Twelve chosen
          from among the ancient Nephites, another portion delivered over
          to the Saints who lived in the first ages of the world, another
          portion to the Saints who lived after the flood, and another
          portion to the Latter-day Saints, and let all be engaged in this
          work of judging the human family and the work can speedily be
          accomplished. It may require years, and it may be accomplished,
          perhaps, in less than one year, that is a matter that we cannot
          decide upon now. There is to be, however, a prior judgment to the
          final judgment day, and we will speak upon that awhile.
          There is a certain degree of judgment rendered upon every man and
          every woman as soon as they have passed the ordeals of the
          present probation. When they lay their bodies down their spirits
          return into the presence of God, when a decree of judgment and
          sentence is immediately passed. Hence we read in the Book of
          Mormon, that the spirits of all men, as soon as they depart from
          this mortal body, return home again to that God who gave them
          life, and then shall it come to pass that the spirits of the
          righteous shall enter into a state of rest, peace and happiness,
          called Paradise, where they shall rest from all their labors. And
          then shall it come to pass that the spirits of the wicked--for
          behold they have no part or portion of the spirit of the
          Lord--shall depart into outer darkness, where there is weeping,
          and wailing and gnashing of teeth; and in these two states or
          conditions the children of men shall be placed until the time of
          the resurrection.
          Then again there will be a judgment after the resurrection, that
          will not be the final judgment, that is the judgment of the
          twelve tribes of Israel, spoken of by our Savior, which will take
          place when he and the Twelve return again to the earth. That
          judgment will be exercised more directly on the whole house of
          Israel that have loved the Lord and kept his commandments.
          Here then are the various times of judgment, the various
          conditions and circumstances of the children of men in the
          spiritual state, judged before the resurrection, assigned to
          happiness or misery as the case may be, and in the judgment of
          the first resurrection certain rewards, glory, power, exaltation,
          happiness and eternal life will be conferred upon the righteous.
          But another sentence of judgment will be pronounced upon those
          who are not favored with coming forth on the morning of the first
          resurrection, namely, those who have disobeyed the Gospel. To all
          such the voice of the angel will be--"Let sinners stay and sleep
          until I call again," their sins having been sufficiently judged
          beforehand, that they are not counted worthy of a resurrection
          among the just and righteous ones of the earth. This agrees with
          another passage recorded in the Book of Covenants, that at the
          sound of the third trump then come the spirits of men that are
          under condemnation. These are the rest of the dead, and they live
          not again until the thousand years are ended, neither again until
          the end of the earth. Why? Because a certain measure of judgment
          is pronounced upon them even then. Now then, let us go to the
          angels which the Saints are to judge. We find that the angels who
          kept not their first estate are reserved in chains of darkness
          until the judgment of the great day. Those angels that fell from
          before the presence of God were judged in a measure upon their
          fall, and were cast out to wander to and fro upon the face of
          this earth, bound as it were with chains of darkness, misery and
          wretchedness, and this condition is to continue during the whole
          of the temporal existence of this earth, until the final judgment
          of the great day, when the Saints, in the authority and power of
          the Priesthood which God Almighty has conferred upon them, will
          arise and judge these fallen angels, and they will receive the
          condemnation of which they are worthy.
          Having made these few preliminary remarks in regard to the
          judgment of the children of men, let us now refer again to the
          passage contained in the seventh chapter of Daniel.--Says that
          ancient Prophet--"I beheld till the thrones were cast down, and
          the Ancient of days did sit, whose garment was white as snow, and
          the hair of his head like the pure wool; and his throne was like
          the fiery flame, and his wheels as burning fire. A fiery stream
          issued and came forth from before him; thousand thousands
          ministered unto him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood
          before him: the judgment was set and the books were opened."
          How many are ten thousand times ten thousand. One hundred
          millions. That would be a larger congregation than you or I ever
          saw, and larger, probably, than any congregation that has ever
          been collected together upon this earth at any one time. They
          would occupy a vast region of country, even for a foothold. A
          hundred million people stood before this personage--the Ancient
          of days. Who was this personage called the Ancient of days? We
          are told by the Prophet Joseph Smith--the great Prophet of the
          last days, whom God raised up by his own voice and by the
          ministration of angels to introduce the great and last
          dispensation of the fullness of times--the last dispensation on
          the earth so far as the proclamation of the mercy is concerned; I
          say we are told by this Prophet that the Ancient of days is the
          most ancient personage that ever had an existence in days here on
          the earth. And who was he? Why, of course, old father Adam, he
          was the most ancient man that ever lived in days that we have any
          knowledge of. He comes, then, as a great judge, to assemble this
          innumerable host of which Daniel speaks. He comes in flaming
          fire. The glory and blessing and greatness of his personage it
          would be impossible even for a man as great as Daniel fully to
          describe. He comes as a man inspired from the eternal throne of
          Jehovah himself. He comes to set in order the councils of the
          Priesthood pertaining to all dispensations, to arrange the
          Priesthood and the councils of the Saints of all former
          dispensations in one grand family and household.
          What is all this for? Why all this arrangement? Why all this
          organization? Why all this judgment and the opening of the books?
          It is to prepare the way for another august personage whom Daniel
          saw coming with the clouds of heaven, namely the Son of Man, and
          these clouds of heaven brought the Son of Man near before the
          Ancient of days. And when the Son of Man came to the Ancient of
          days, behold a kingdom was given to the Son of Man, and greatness
          and glory, that all people, nations and languages should serve
          him, and his kingdom should be an everlasting kingdom, a kingdom
          that should never be done away.
          This explains the reason why our father Adam comes as the Ancient
          of days with all these numerous hosts, and organizes them
          according to the records of the book, every man in his place,
          preparatory to the coming of the Son of Man to receive the
          kingdom. Then every family that is in the order of the
          Priesthood, and every man and every woman, and every son or
          daughter whatever their kindred, descent or Priesthood, will know
          their place.
          Where will this great conference take place? The Lord has
          revealed this also. The Lord did not raise up this boy, Joseph,
          for nothing, or merely to reveal a few of the first principles of
          the Gospel of Christ; but he raised him up to reveal the hidden
          mysterious things, the wonders of the eternal worlds, the wonders
          of the dispensation of the fullness of times, those wonders that
          took place before the foundation of the world; and all things, so
          far as it was wisdom in God, were unfolded by this personage
          called by his enemies "Old Joe Smith," who was about fourteen
          years old when the Lord raised him up. I say that he, by the
          power of the Holy Ghost, and the spirit of revelation, revealed
          the very place where this great assemblage of ten thousand times
          ten thousand of the righteous shall be gathered together when the
          books are opened. It will be on one of the last places of
          residence of our father Adam here on the earth, and it is called
          by revelation Adam-ondi-ahman, which, being interpreted, means
          the valley of God where Adam dwelt, the words belonging to the
          language which was spoken by the children of men before the
          confusion took place at Babel. In that valley Adam called
          together Seth, Enos, Cainan, Mahalaleel, Jared, Enoch, Methusaleh
          and all the high Priests and righteous of his descendants for
          some seven or eight generations. Three years before his death he
          there stood up, being bowed with age, and preached to that vast
          assembly of people, and pronounced upon them his great and last
          patriarchal blessing, and they rose up by the authority and power
          and revelation of the holy Priesthood which they held, and
          pronounced their blessing upon their great common progenitor
          Adam, and he was called the Prince of Peace, and the Father of
          many nations, and it was said that he should stand at the head of
          and rule over his people of all generations, notwithstanding he
          was so aged. That was the blessing pronounced, three years before
          his death, upon the great head, Patriarch and Prophet of this
          creation, the man whom God choose to begin the works of this
          creation, in other words to begin the peopling of this earth.
          Where was that valley in which that grand patriarchal gathering
          was held? It was about fifty, sixty or seventy miles north of
          Jackson County, Missouri, where the Zion of the latter days will
          be built. Where the garden of Eden was is not fully revealed;
          where Adam eat the forbidden fruit is not revealed so far as I
          know, that is, the particular location on the earth, no
          revelation informs us where he passed the first few centuries of
          his life; but suffice it to say that, when Adam was about six or
          seven hundred years old there was a great gathering of the
          people. Enoch, the seventh from Adam, who lived contemporary with
          his old ancestor, and others who were called by him, went forth
          and gathered out the righteous from all the nations, and as there
          was not Atlantic Ocean in those days rolling between the eastern
          and western continents, they could gather together by land from
          Asia, Africa and Europe. In those days the earth was not divided
          as it was after the flood, in the days of Peleg. In that
          gathering many came from the ends of the earth. Adam might have
          been among the emigrating companies, if not, then, he most
          probably had his residence at the central place of gathering. Let
          this be as it may, it is not revealed. There is a place, however
          where this great Conference took place in ancient times, where
          the Lord revealed himself to the vast assembly, and stood in
          their midst, and instructed them with his own mouth, and they saw
          his face. There is the place where it was ordained that Adam
          should have the power, as the Ancient of Days, after a certain
          period and dispensations had rolled away, to come in his glory
          accompanied by the ancient Saints, the generations that should
          live after him and should take up their abode upon that land
          where they received their last blessing, there in the valley of
          This man, will sit upon his throne, and ten thousand times then
          thousand immortal beings--his children--will stand before him,
          with all their different grades of Priesthood, according to the
          order which God has appointed and ordained. Then every quorum of
          the Priesthood in this Latter-day Saints Church will find its
          place, and never until then. If we go behind the vail we will not
          see this perfect organization of the Saints of all generations
          until that period shall arrive. That will be before Jesus comes
          in his glory. Then we will find that there is a place for the
          First Presidency of this Church; for the Twelve Apostles called
          in this dispensation; for the twelve disciples that were called
          among the remnants of Joseph on this land in ancient times; for
          the twelve that were called among the ten tribes of Israel in the
          north country; for the Twelve that were called in Palestine, who
          administered in the presence of our Savior; all the various
          quorums and councils of the Priesthood in every dispensation that
          has transpired since the days of Adam until the present time will
          find their places, according to the callings, gifts, blessings,
          ordinations and keys of Priesthood which the Lord Almighty has
          conferred upon them in their several generations. This, then,
          will be one of the grandest meetings that have ever transpired
          upon the face of our globe. What manner of persons ought you and
          I, my brethren and sisters, and all the people of God in the
          latter days to be, that we may be counted worthy to participate
          in the august assemblies that are to come from the eternal
          worlds, whose bodies have burst the tomb and come forth
          immortalized and eternal in their nature.
          It will be found then who it is who have received ordinances by
          divine authority, and who have received ordinances by the
          precepts and authority of men. It will then be known who have
          been joined together in celestial marriage by divine authority,
          and who by wicked counsels, and by justices of the peace who did
          not believe in God at the time that they did it, or those who
          have been married merely until death shall part them. It will
          then be known that those who have received the ordinances of
          marriage according to the divine appointment are married for all
          eternity; it will then be known that their children are the legal
          heirs to the inheritances, and glories, and powers, and keys and
          Priesthood of their fathers, throughout the eternal generations
          that are to come; and every man will have his family gathered
          around him which have been given unto him by the sealing of the
          everlasting Priesthood, and the order and law which God has
          ordained, and none other. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 /
          Wilford Woodruff, October, 7, 1874
                         Wilford Woodruff, October, 7, 1874
           Delivered at the Semi-Annual Conference of the Church of Jesus
                                      Christ of
              Latter-Day Saints, in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                                  October, 7, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                                       TO LIVE
          I did not have the privilege of listening to all the remarks of
          Elder Taylor this forenoon, yet to what I did hear I can bear
          testimony of its truth. I always delight in seeing a man valiant
          in the testimony of Jesus Christ. There is something glorious in
          the principles of the Gospel. I always did, from my boyhood, hope
          and pray that I might live long enough in the earth to find some
          man who would have sufficient courage and independence of mind to
          believe in the same doctrine and Gospel that Jesus Christ taught,
          and I have lived long enough to see, hear and partake of it, and
          I glory in it, because it is true.
               The religion or Gospel of Jesus Christ is a very unpopular
          thing, and has been in every age of the world. Show me a man who
          was ever inspired of the Lord God of Israel to do a work for him
          who was popular. You can not find such a man in the whole history
          of the world. You may take Noah, who was about a hundred and
          twenty years building an ark, and how many friends did he have? I
          think about seven in all. Lot was very unpopular the morning he
          left Sodom and Gomorrah, and so have been all the Patriarchs and
          Prophets in every age of the world. Jesus Christ, when he came to
          Jerusalem, the Son of God, the Savior of the world, the great
          Shiloh of the Jews, came to his own father's house, yet there was
          not a man more despised in all Judea and Jerusalem than was Jesus
          Christ, from the day of his birth until he came to the cross. Why
          is this? Because men love darkness rather than light--because
          their deeds are evil. The Lord Almighty, in the last days, has
          set his hand to carry out and fulfill his words for the past five
          or six thousand years, given through the mouths of his servants
          the Prophets and Apostles whenever he has had them on the earth.
          He has commenced this work and he will perform it, for, as
          brother Taylor has justly said, there is no power on the earth
          that can stay his hand, for the simple reason that God controls
          the destinies of all men--kings, princes, rulers, presidents,
          statesmen, governors, nations, tongues and people, upon the face
          of the whole earth, and men are placed in a position where they
          are under the necessity of exercising faith in God in order to
          build up his kingdom. Read the eleventh chapter of Hebrews, and
          you will find that, beginning with the creation f the world,
          everything has been accomplished by faith. The whole of the work
          of all the ancient Patriarchs and Prophets was accomplished by
          the exercise of this principle; and it is just so in the last
          dispensation of the fullness of times. When God sent angels to
          Joseph Smith, he knew and understood, by the teachings given unto
          him, what he had to perform in a measure. The Lord called him to
          do a work and raised him up for this purpose. Was Joseph Smith
          popular among men? No, never, he was persecuted until the day of
          his death, until he sealed his testimony with his blood. But the
          persecution against him, and unbelief of the world, do not make
          the truth of God without effect. The Lord has carried out and
          fulfilled all these prophecies from the commencement until now;
          there never has been a jot or tittle allowed to fall unfulfilled;
          there never was a revelation, from the days of father Adam until
          this, given by the inspiration of the Holy Ghost through the
          mouth of Patriarch or Prophet that will fall unfulfilled. Though
          the heavens and the earth pass away, these things will not fail
          of their fulfillment, and, as brother Taylor has said, the world
          cannot stay the work of God. They never have done, and they never
          This is a different dispensation from all others. God has set to
          his hand to build up his kingdom and Zion, and that kingdom and
          Zion must be built up, or the revelations of God will fall
          unfulfilled. The Bible is full of these teachings, and they must
          have their fulfillment, and I bear testimony to their truth. The
          Bible is true, and its prophecies were spoken by holy men of old
          as they were moved upon and by the Holy Ghost. The revelations of
          Isaiah concerning the building up of the Zion of God in the last
          days will have their fulfillment. The house of God will be
          established upon the tops of the mountains, and all nations must
          flow unto it. Zion must arise and put on her beautiful garments,
          she must be clothed with the glory of her God. The Temple of God
          has got to be built also upon the tops of the mountains; the
          Gospel must be preached to every nation under heaven before the
          end shall come.
          The world say they do not believe these things; that is true, we
          do not expect them, we never expected them to believe them, but
          the unbelief of the world does not change the work of God. We
          have to live by faith. When Moroni hid in the earth the record
          which the Book of Mormon was translated from, four hundred years
          after Christ came in the flesh, he did it by faith, as much so as
          Noah built the ark. He looked forward and saw that record come
          forth in the last days, in fulfillment of the sayings of Ezekiel
          and of the saying of Isaiah, when the stick of Joseph should be
          put with the stick of Judah, and they should become one stick in
          the hands of the servants of the Lord before the eyes of the
          world, and when the truth should spring out of the earth and
          righteousness look down from heaven. These things were to be a
          beginning of the great work of God preparatory to the gathering
          of the twelve tribes of Israel in the latter days. That work has
          come forth, just as everything has been fulfilled which has been
          done by faith and by the commandment of God.
          When Joseph Smith began to receive revelations from God he was a
          boy, an illiterate youth; and had he not had faith and the
          inspiration of the Almighty upon him he never could have had
          power and courage to go forth and introduce the Gospel of Jesus
          Christ in the midst of a generations of false doctrine, ignorance
          and darkness. But God preserved, inspired and sustained him, and
          caused him to live upon the earth until he had planted this
          kingdom, in fulfillment of the revelations. He organized the
          Church, he received the Holy Priesthood from the hands of angels
          sent from God--men who had held the Aaronic and Melchizedek
          Priesthood in other generations upon the earth; they conferred
          upon Joseph all the powers and keys of the Priesthood necessary
          to build up the kingdom of God upon the earth, and he lived long
          enough to organize that kingdom, and it will never be thrown down
          any more forever.
          The revelations of God to us have been encouraging, and we have
          seen them fulfilled, and we shall continue to do so until the
          end. I will say to the Latter-day Saints, that we are in the same
          position that other generations have been--we have got to walk by
          faith, we must have confidence in the fulfillment of the
          revelations of God. No man or woman on the face of the earth will
          ever be disappointed with regard to the fulfillment of the word
          of the Lord, for he has uttered decrees, made covenants, and
          through his servants the Prophets has declared his word and will
          concerning the world and its inhabitants, and not one of his
          sayings will fail, all must be fulfilled. If it could be
          otherwise, the Zion of God would never be built up; but God has
          decreed that his kingdom will be established, that Zion will
          arise and shine, and that every weapon formed against her will be
          The prayers of hundreds and thousands of Saints, dwelling in
          these valleys of the mountains, daily ascend into the ears of the
          Lord of Sabaoth, beseeching him to fulfill his word upon the
          earth and to sustain his servants. Do not the Saints pray for
          anybody else? Yes, they pray for everybody--for President Grant,
          Judge McKean, the Governor of Utah, and every man holding
          official positions here, as well as for Brigham Young and the
          Apostles. These prayers ascend before the Lord and they will be
          heard and answered.
          Talk about Brigham Young and Joseph Smith, how many have said to
          Joseph Smith--"How on the earth do you govern and control this
          people? How easy you do it!" Our enemies, to-day, look at Brigham
          Young and say--"If he would only die Mormonism would stop;" but
          in this they are mistaken. This work does not depend upon
          President Young; it did not depend upon Joseph Smith. All the
          world thought if they could only slay Joseph Smith there would be
          an end to Mormonism, and so there would have been had it not been
          the work of God Almighty; if it had been the work of man it would
          long since have ceased to exist on the earth. The power that has
          sustained this work from the beginning sustains it now. As
          brother Taylor has said, all the holy Prophets and Apostles who
          have been slain on the earth for the testimony of Jesus and the
          word of God, and who now sit on the right hand of God in the
          heavens, are just as much engaged in carrying on the work of God
          here as when they lived in the flesh, and more so, because they
          have more light and power. And Jesus Christ, himself, who died on
          the cross, and after his resurrection visited the other sheep of
          his fold on this continent, and offered the Gospel to Jew and
          Gentile, that same Jesus is pleading with the Father to-day, and
          has been from the day his body lay in the tomb, to carry out and
          fulfill his purposes and to accomplish his work in our day and
          generation. We are not alone in our efforts to carry on the work
          of God. If the eyes of the world were open, they would see that
          there are more for us than against us. We are only, in one sense
          of the word, worms of the dust in the hands of God. This work
          does not depend on any man or set of men. The Lord Almighty has
          set his hand to accomplish his purposes, and he is feeling after
          the honest and meek throughout the world, in order to find those
          who are willing to take hold and help to build up his kingdom in
          the latter days. He has found a few, and he will find many more.
          How has it been with Joseph Smith, Brigham Young, and Apostles,
          and thousands of the Elders of Israel who have gone forth to
          preach the Gospel to the world without purse or scrip, offering
          the word of life and salvation without money and without price?
          They have carried their knapsacks on their backs, or with valise
          in hand have traveled thousands and thousands of miles for this
          purpose. They have been inspired to do this by the power of the
          Most High God, and that inspiration has sustained them all the
          way through; it has upheld this Church from the time it came
          forth until this hour, and will unto its consummation. We came in
          here on the 24th of July, 1847, having been driven from our
          homes, the graves of our fathers, and from the lands we purchased
          from the general Government because of the word of God and the
          testimony of Jesus Christ, or, in other words, because of our
          religion. We came here and found a barren desert, containing
          nothing but a few roving Indians, coyote wolves, crickets and
          grasshoppers. There was no mark of the Anglo Saxon race or of the
          white man here then, but the whole region of country was a desert
          of the most forbidding and desolate character. Now when strangers
          come up to Zion on this great highway, cast up in fulfillment of
          the revelations of God, what do they see? They see no longer a
          desert, but a belt, for six hundred miles, of cities, towns,
          villages, orchards, fields and crops. Who has done this? The Lord
          God of Israel has inspired his Saints to do it. President Young
          has been led, guided, counselled and moved upon by the Holy Ghost
          and by the revelations of Jesus Christ, and that which strangers
          now behold in this Tabernacle, and throughout this Territory is
          in fulfillment of that volume of revelation which you can read in
          the prophecies of Isaiah and others of the Prophets and
          Patriarchs. These things are true and your eyes can see them,
          whether you believe them or not has nothing to do with it. I will
          tell you that if this work had not been of God, and God had not
          borne testimony to the preaching of the Elders, we might have
          preached until we had been as old as Methuselah and we could not
          have gathered the people from almost every nation under heaven as
          we have done, according to the predictions of the ancient
          Prophets contained in the Bible. But the Lord has never
          disappointed anybody so far as his work is concerned. It did not
          stop after the death of Joseph, and it never will on account of
          the death of any man, Prophet, Apostle or any other man, for it
          is in the hands of God, and he has decreed that it shall stand
          for ever, and that it shall extend until its dominion becomes
          We do not see to-day what we saw twenty-four years ago, and we do
          not see to-day what will be seen twenty-four years hence; there
          will be no stoppage to the building up of the Zion of God, or to
          the carrying out of his work. Joseph Smith was a Prophet of God,
          raised up by the Lord Almighty, and the inspiration of God guided
          and sustained him to the day of his death. He sealed his
          testimony with his blood, and that testimony is in force upon all
          the world. This record which I hold in my hands (Book of Doctrine
          and Covenants) contains the revelations of God, and in one of
          them the Lord says--"Let earth and hell combine against you, and
          they shall not prevail, the kingdom is yours--I have given it
          into your hands--and you are called upon to build it up." The
          Lord is at the helm to govern, guide and control this work, and
          he will do so unto the end.
          Now when men undertake to fight against this work, as brother
          Taylor has said, they fight against God; it is not against
          Brigham Young, the Apostles or this people alone, but it is
          against God. Every man will be rewarded according to his works.
          Our prayers go up before God day and night, that he will execute
          justice, judgment, righteousness and truth, that he will sustain
          everything that leads to good, and does good, and that he will
          overthrow all that lead to evil and do evil; and we are assured
          by revelation that the Lord will hear and answer our prayers. The
          Lord is with this people; but as Latter-day Saints, I do-not
          think that we always prize our privileges. We are called upon to
          perform a work; the Lord has placed this work in our hands, and
          we are held responsible before the heavens and the earth to use
          the talents--the light and truth, which have been committed into
          our hands.
          What is this life? What are the things of this life? The
          Latter-day Saints are living for things the other side of the
          vail, the same as all servants of God have done in every age of
          the world. Now is it not a curiosity that so few of the human
          family have an interest in eternal things--things the other side
          of the vail? Bless your souls, our lives here are only a few days
          in duration, but on the other side of the vail we shall live
          eternally, we shall live and exist just as long as our Creator
          will exist, and our eternal destiny depends upon the manner in
          which we spend our short lives here in the flesh. Will it not pay
          any man, any Prophet, Apostle, or Saint, in this or any other age
          of the world, to be true and faithful to his God, to magnify his
          calling, to be valiant in the testimony of Jesus Christ, to
          preach the Gospel, to bear record of the things of the kingdom to
          Jew and Gentile in his day and generation? Yes, it will pay men
          to do right, and man will sorrow and bitterly regret taking any
          course in this or any other generation against God or his work.
          What have been the afflictions of the Jews who rejected Jesus
          Christ? Why every word spoken concerning them by Moses and Jesus
          has had its fulfillment until the present day, for hundreds of
          years past and gone. They have been a hiss and a by-word, and
          trodden under the feet of the Gentiles, in fulfillment of the
          words of Jesus Christ, and they will continue in their present
          position until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in. Jesus
          offered his Gospel to the Jews in his day, but in these latter
          days it has been offered first to the Gentiles, thus fulfilling
          the saying that the first shall be last and the last shall be
          first; and when the Gentiles count themselves unworthy of eternal
          life, the Gospel will go to the House of Israel and they will
          receive it. The Gentiles should heed the warning given them by
          the Apostle Paul, lest they fall through the example of unbelief
          as did the Jews, who were broken off because they rejected the
          Messiah, and refused the message of salvation which he delivered
          unto them. From that day to this they have been scattered, peeled
          and afflicted; their city was overthrown and their Temples
          destroyed, and the land of their fathers has been in the hands of
          Gentile nations until to-day. The Lord has said--"Vengeance is
          mine and I will repay," and we may rest assured that the Lord
          will reward those who seek to destroy the lives of his people and
          to overthrow his kingdom. Vengeance is in the hands of the
          Almighty. "I will fight your battles," saith the Lord. We do not
          seek any man's hurt, however much of an enemy he may be to us, we
          leave him in the hands of God, we know that he will reward him
          and the reward will be all that God, Saints, angels, devils or
          wicked man can ask, and it will be all that any man can want.
          When we undertake to fight against God we have to pay for it. Men
          will have to pay for every sin committed in the flesh; no matter
          what they do, they will have to be accountable for it. If a man
          does right, is valiant in the testimony of Jesus Christ, obeys
          the Gospel, and keeps his covenants, when he passes to the other
          side of the vail he has an entrance into the presence of God and
          the Lamb; having kept celestial law he enters into celestial
          glory, he is preserved by that law, and he participates in that
          glory through the endless ages of eternity. It pays any man under
          heaven to obey and be faithful to the law of God the few days he
          spends in the flesh. I say to the world, to every sect under
          heaven, if you ever obtain any blessings in the eternal worlds
          from anybody at all it will be from the God the Latter-day Saints
          worship, for God made us all; whether we are Methodists,
          Baptists, Mormons or anything else we are all the children of one
          parent. Then why should we persecute one another because of our
          religion? It is folly in the highest degree. We live in a land
          and under a constitution which guarantees the right to worship
          God according to the dictates of conscience to every sect, party,
          name and denomination under heaven, then why should we be so
          narrow-minded as to hate or seek to persecute or kill our
          neighbor because he differs from us in religion?
          We worship God and we are Latter-day Saints because we know that
          the Gospel which has been revealed in these latter days is true.
          We have received it and have realized the promises made to those
          who would obey it. The Holy Ghost and the testimony of Jesus
          Christ never deceived us, and we have received that testimony
          while abroad in almost every nation under heaven. By this power
          we have been gathered. That is the reason we are Mormons, as the
          world call us. We know this work is true, we know it is the
          Gospel of Jesus Christ. We would not persecute, abuse, or quarrel
          with any man because of his religious views. A man's religion,
          let it be what it will, is between him and his God. He is going
          to the eternal world, and he will receive his reward, and there
          is no reason or use in quarreling about religion, and we have
          never felt to do this in our lives. Whatever may have been said
          concerning us, our Tabernacles--this and others--have been open
          to every minister who came along, no matter to what sect or party
          he belonged. We are not afraid of our doctrines, and we are not
          afraid to have our children hear the doctrines of others. If any
          man has got a truth that we have not got, let us have it. Truth
          is what we are after, and we are not afraid of the doctrines of
          any man; we are willing to stand by the revelations of God. These
          are the feelings of the Latter-day Saints. When our Methodist
          friends came to this city, erected their tent and held their big
          camp meeting, what was the course pursued by the Latter-day
          Saints? The President of the Church, the Twelve Apostles and
          citizens with their wives and children gave them a congregation
          of many thousands, and we sat in their tent and listened to them
          while they abused us just as much as they pleased. We believe in
          giving every man the privilege of saying what he pleases, we have
          always been willing to let every man express his sentiments here
          among us. We are not afraid of them. If we have not the truth,
          that is what we are after, we want it. But we know that we have
          it, that the Gospel as restored, revealed through Joseph Smith,
          is the truth of God, and we know that the Lord has set to his
          hand to build up Zion, and he is going to do it. We bear record
          of this because we know it is true.
          I pray that God will bless the Latter-day Saints. I pray that we
          may prize our privileges, that we may enjoy the spirit of our
          calling, and that the Holy Ghost may enlighten our minds
          continually, that we may not walk in the dark but in the light. I
          pray that the Spirit of God may bear record to the stranger
          within our gates. I am satisfied that it does, and it has done
          more or less for the forty years that are past and gone. But it
          is the same to-day as it was in the days of Jesus. He told
          Nicodemus that light had come into the world, but men lived
          darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil, and
          here is where condemnation comes in, but we can not help that. My
          brethren and I have traveled a great many thousands of miles to
          preach the Gospel to our fellow-men; we have done this because we
          know this Gospel is true. We are willing to stand by this Gospel,
          this testimony and this work in life and in death, in time and in
          eternity. We shall meet the strangers who come here and visit us,
          on the other side of the vail; they will meet us there, and if
          they never know before, they will know then that our testimony is
          I pray to God our heavenly Father that he will bear testimony by
          his Holy Spirit to the meek and honest among the children of men,
          that they may receive the truth and be prepared to inherit
          eternal life, for Jesus' sake. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / George
          Albert Smith, October 6, 1874
                        George Albert Smith, October 6, 1874
                        REMARKS BY PRESIDENT GEORGE A. SMITH,
           Delivered at the Semi-Annual Conference of the Church of Jesus
                                      Christ of
          Latter-day Saints, in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, Tuesday
                                  October 6, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                        TEMPLES--SAFETY ON THE OLD SHIP ZION.
          The present occasion, a Semi-annual Conference, is one which, in
          the history that we are making, is marked with more than ordinary
          importance. I always feel thankful to be permitted to meet the
          faces and greet the countenances of the brethren and sisters from
          the different parts of the Territory and elsewhere, who assemble
          at these Conferences; and I feel it important that, in doing so,
          we should lay aside the ordinary business transactions of life,
          and try and compare notes with ourselves as to our actual
          progress in the things of the kingdom. We have received the first
          principles of the Gospel, and we have started in their
          observance; and in doing so we have become obligated by our
          personal agreements, and covenants in the waters of baptism, and
          in the ordinances which pertain to the Gospel, to live in
          accordance with those principles which are revealed. In pursuing
          our daily avocations we become mixed up, more or less, with the
          world; we are called to battle with the world, and we have
          exhibitions from time to time of the weaknesses of human nature.
          I remember very well in the days of Kirtland, hearing men testify
          that they knew this was the work of God and that they had seen
          visions of the armies of heaven and the horsemen thereof, as did
          Gehazi, the servant of the Prophet, and then, in consequence of
          the failure of a bank, or because some business transaction did
          not come out in accordance with their expectations or desires,
          they would apostatize and come to the conclusion that they never
          knew anything about it, and become infidels. This shows the
          weakness to which some individuals have been subject. I also
          remember, in the great apostacy which took place in Kirtland,
          that those who apostatized considered that all the talent of the
          Church had left it, and yet the work rolled right along, and, so
          far as they were concerned, they were never missed, and were soon
          forgotten, and nobody could tell where they went to. I have
          occasionally met them twenty or thirty years afterwards, and
          could hardly tell where they dropped out, their disappearance
          made no ripple. The facts are, brethren, that the work of the
          Lord does not depend upon us. If we go into darkness, if we let
          our hearts be filled with covetousness or corruption, or give way
          to licentiousness, drunkenness, Sabbath-breaking, unbelief, or
          any crime that corrodes our system or organization, so that our
          tabernacles become unfit for the holy Spirit to dwell in, it will
          withdraw from us, and the light that is in us becomes darkened,
          and that darkness is so great that we grope as a blind man and
          wander hither and thither, and those who suffer themselves to be
          led by these blind men fall into the ditch with them, but the
          work rolls right along.
          Now, we assemble here, and we want to review our conduct and our
          characters before the Lord. It is one of the weaknesses of human
          nature to sit in judgment on others, but on the present occasion
          we should bring ourselves to account, one and all, and determine
          whether we are living in accordance with the principles of the
          holy Gospel that we have received. I recollect hearing once that
          Satan had invented for men a certain kind of leather spectacles
          which, when a man looked at his own sins, made them look very
          small, and when he looked at his own righteous acts, made them
          look very large; when he looked at his neighbor's sins they
          seemed very large, and when he looked at his neighbor's righteous
          acts they appeared very small. Spectacles of this kind should be
          avoided, and we should be very careful when we are examining
          ourselves that we do not get them on, as well as when we examine
          our neighbors.
          The first step, then, in relation to the business of this
          Conference, is to preach the principles of repentance and
          reformation. We should question ourselves, and determine whether
          we have suffered ourselves, with the cares of the world, the
          deceitfulness of riches, the desire of gain, or from any other
          cause, to become darkened in our minds. There are many false
          spirits gone out into the world, and when Joseph Smith
          communicated the keys of the Priesthood to the servants of the
          Lord, he gave them the power to try these spirits, and this power
          was given to the Church, and no man need be led astray only as he
          suffers himself to lose the Holy Spirit, which is the result of
          sin, wickedness, neglect or transgression.
          In addition to this general reformation which we wish to impress
          upon the minds of our brethren and sisters at the opening of the
          Conference, we want to take such steps as will be for the
          temporal and spiritual welfare of the Saints. The changes which
          have transpired in the world show us how uncertain a tenure our
          business arrangements are placed upon. From the time that the
          revelation was given to the Saints, commanding them to let the
          beauty of their garments be the workmanship of their own hands,
          to the present time, that doctrine has been preached, and yet, it
          now seems more necessary than ever that, in all our settlements
          and associations, we should organize and take such measures as
          will enable us to provide, within ourselves as far as possible,
          the articles which we need. It is our duty to ourselves and to
          our God to unite our interests in such a manner that we can
          produce what we need within ourselves without being hewers of
          wood and drawers of water to strangers. We have made a good deal
          of progress in this direction, as we can see by the numbers of
          people who come here clothed in the manufacture of their own
          factories or looms. Still there is room for further progress in
          this direction, and during the Conference instruction will be
          given as may be considered necessary to aid us in facilitating
          the work of manufacturing our own wool, leather, shoes, hats and
          every other article of domestic necessity, just as far as our
          country will admit.
          We are always commanded, so says the revelation contained in the
          Book of Doctrine and Covenants, given on the 19th of January,
          1841, to build Temples to the holy name of our Father in heaven.
          We are now engaged in this work; we are building a Temple in this
          city and one in St. George; and if any of you ever cast an eye at
          the beautiful foundation that is now raised up here by the Tithes
          and offerings of the brethren, you can but rejoice in the idea
          that we are building, to the name of our Father, an edifice
          creditable to the work for which it is designed. We wish our
          brethren and sisters to remember this. It has been counseled and
          advised by our President, and by those in authority, that it
          would be a wise things for every person in the Church to
          contribute a monthly donation of a half dollar in money for the
          Temple, that their names may be put in the book of the law of the
          Lord, that old and young among the Latter-day Saints may feel an
          interest in this matter, that on their fast days they may make
          this contribution to aid in supplying the necessary means to the
          workmen that can not be procured without money, and the necessary
          materials to facilitate the work. If anybody will go and examine
          that foundation, and the granite blocks that are lying around,
          and consider the expense of quarrying them and bringing them
          here, and of cutting them and fitting them in that foundation,
          they will realize that the brethren have been very industrious,
          and that a great work has been done, for such edifices are not
          erected without great labor, time and expense. We therefore
          desire the brethren to take into consideration, during the
          Conference, such subjects as pertain to the advancement of these
          Temples. We also wish, during the Conference, to call the
          attention of the brethren to the propriety of some two or three
          hundred hands from different parts of the northern settlements
          volunteering to go to St. George this winter to work on the
          Temple, making a donation of their labor. During last winter
          quite a number of the brethren went down from Sanpete and some of
          the neighboring counties, and put in about three months work, and
          during the entire winter there were only seven and a half days
          they could not lay stone on the Temple, and they were mostly
          rainy days. Those of us who have not got anything to employ us to
          advantage during the winter, can go down there and put in three
          or four months' work on that Temple, in getting lumber, and
          hauling it, in quarrying rock and in cutting and setting it; in
          making mortar, providing lime and hauling it, and in aiding in
          all the various departments of labor necessary. We can have the
          walls put up and get the timber ready for the roof during the
          winter, while we should be doing comparatively little at home.
          This is one item that I wish to have considered through the
          There will be some missionaries called during Conference, whose
          duty it will be to preach the Gospel and defend the interests of
          Zion in the United States, Canada, and other parts of the world.
          We would invite our brethren and sisters living in this
          neighborhood, as long as there are vacant seats here, to come and
          occupy them while the Elders shall give them instruction; and we
          ask every man and woman who fears the Lord to lift their hearts
          to him in prayer, that his blessing may rest upon the Elders,
          that President Young may be healed of his afflictions, and have
          health and strength to perform the duties of his callings, and
          that all the Elders who rise to speak may be filled with the
          power of the Holy Ghost, that we may be instructed, not from the
          mere natural wisdom of the individual, but by the inspiration of
          the Spirit of the Almighty, that our testimony, our knowledge of
          the Gospel, the principles of salvation as revealed unto us, may
          be inspired unto us by the power of the Almighty, that we may
          know for ourselves and not for another that we have received the
          Gospel of Jesus Christ. These are some of the items that will be
          spoken of during the Conference as the Spirit may direct, as well
          as other matters pertaining to Zion. You remember the revelation
          in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, given June 22, 1834, on
          Fishing River, Clay County, Mo. It says:
          7. "And let all my people who dwell in the regions round about be
          very faithful, and prayerful, and humble before me, and reveal
          not the things which I have revealed unto them, until it is
          wisdom in me that they should be revealed. Talk not of judgment,
          neither boast of faith, nor of mighty works, but carefully gather
          together, as much in one region as can be consistently with the
          feelings of the people; and behold I will give unto you favor and
          grace in their eyes, that you may rest in peace and safety, while
          you are saying unto the people, Execute judgment and justice for
          us according to law, and redress us of our wrongs.
          8. "Now, behold, I say unto you, my friends, in this way you may
          find favor in the eyes of the people until the army of Israel
          becomes very great; and I will soften the hearts of the people,
          as I did the heart of Pharaoh, from time to time, until my
          servants Baurak Ale, and Baneemy, whom I have appointed, shall
          have time to gather upon the strength of my house, and to have
          sent wise men to fulfill that which I have commanded concerning
          the purchasing of all the lands in Jackson County that can be
          purchased, and in the adjoining counties round about; for it is
          my will that these lands should be purchased, and after they are
          purchased that my Saints should possess them according to the
          laws of consecration which I have given; and after these lands
          are purchased, I will hold the armies of Israel guiltless in
          taking possession of their own lands which they have previously
          purchased with their monies, and of throwing down the towers of
          mine enemies that may be called upon them, and scattering their
          watchmen and avenging me of mine enemies unto the third and forth
          generation of them that hate me.
               9. "But firstly, let my army become very great, and let it
          be sanctified before me, that it may become fair as the sun, and
          clear as the moon, and that her banners may be terrible unto all
          nations; that the kingdoms of this world may be constrained to
          acknowledge that the kingdom of Zion is in very deed the kingdom
          of our God and his Christ: therefore let us become subject unto
          her laws.
          10. "Verily I say unto you, it is expedient in me that the first
          Elders of my Church should receive their endowment from on high
          in my house, which I have commanded to be built unto my name in
          the land of Kirtland; and let those commandments which I have
          given concerning Zion and her law be executed, and fulfilled,
          after her redemption. There has been a day of calling, but the
          time has come for a day of choosing, and let those be chosen that
          are worthy; and it shall be manifest unto my servant, by the
          voice of the Spirit, those that are chosen and they shall be
          sanctified; and inasmuch as they follow the counsel which they
          receive, they shall have power after many days to accomplish all
          things pertaining to Zion.
          11. "And again I say unto you, sue for peace, not only the people
          that have smitten you, but also to all people; and lift up an
          ensign of peace; and make a proclamation for peace unto the ends
          of the earth; and make proposals for peace unto those who have
          smitten you, according to the voice of the Spirit which is in
          you, and all things shall work together for your good; therefore
          be faithful, and behold, and lo, I am with you even unto the end.
          Even so. Amen."
          Let us consider these things and sanctify ourselves in all
          humility. God has preserved us from all our enemies for over
          forty years since this revelation was given, and we occupy many
          cities, towns and settlements, and should improve in all the
          goodly graces of the Gospel preparatory to the great work still
          before us, for the promises of God are true and will not fail.
          Oliver Cowdery, previous to his apostacy said to President Joseph
          Smith: "If I should leave the Church it would break up." Joseph
          said to Oliver--"What, who are you? The Lord is not dependent
          upon you, the work will roll forth do what you will." Oliver left
          the Church, and was gone about ten years; then he came back
          again, to a branch of the Church in meeting on Mosquito Creek, in
          Potawattamie County, Iowa. The body of the Church had come off
          here to the west, but there was still remaining there a branch of
          about fifteen hundred or two thousand people, and when he came
          there he bore his testimony to the truth of the Book of Mormon
          and the divine mission of the Twelve Apostles, and asked to be
          received into the Church again, and said that he had never seen
          in all his life so large a congregation of Saints as the one then
          assembled. We loved to hear brother Oliver testify, we were
          blessed with his witness, but when he passed off and went among
          our enemies he was forgotten, and the work rolled steadily along
          step by step, so that, ten years after, when he came back to an
          outside branch, he expressed his astonishment at seeing such a
          vast body of Saints. Some men in their hours of darkness may
          feel--I have heard of men feeling so--that the work is about
          done, that the enemies of the Saints have become so powerful, and
          bring such vast wealth and energy to bear against them that we
          are all going to be crushed out pretty soon. I will say to such
          brethren, it is very bad policy for you, because you think the
          old ship of Zion is going to sink, to jump overboard, for if you
          jump overboard you are gone anyhow, and the old ship Zion will
          ride triumphantly through all the storms, and everybody who
          proves unworthy to remain on board of her and jumps overboard
          will repent of it when it is too late, as many have done already.
          The gospel of Jesus Christ is true, and the Lord has revealed
          this work. It has been said--"Oh what vast, what wonderful
          ability Brigham Young has possessed to do what has been done!"
          The fact in the case is, it is the Lord who has done it. He has
          guided and directed and has done the work, and his servants who
          have labored in it, have only been instruments in his hands, he
          as given them all the ability, wisdom and knowledge which have
          been manifested; and the same God has the power to still guide,
          control, instruct and uphold, and he will do so. Those who fall
          into darkness, error, folly and wickedness simply lose their
          position; but they who endure to the end the same will be saved.
          The great work which has been commenced in these last days will
          continue until, by and by, when the Lord sees fit, he will come
          to his Temple and will receive his Saints as his own.
          Let us then devote our time and attentions for a few days to
          receiving instruction and counsel, that we may have our hearts
          comforted and renew our testimony, for I can assure you, as the
          Lord God of hosts lives, the Gospel of Jesus Christ is true, and
          all of us who fall into darkness and go astray will be the
          losers. Zion will ride triumphant, which may God grant for Jesus'
          sake, Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 /
          Brigham Young, October 6, 1874
                           Brigham Young, October 6, 1874
                       DISCOURSE BY ELDER BRIGHAM YOUNG, Jun.
           Delivered at the Semi-Annual Conference of the Church or Jesus
                                      Christ of
          Latter-day Saints, in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, Tuesday
                                  October 6, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          I have a testimony also to offer to my brethren and sisters. It
          is a great thing, in my estimation, to know God and his Son, to
          know that God has established the kingdom of the latter-days, and
          to realize that there are men upon the earth, who are capable,
          through the revelations of almighty God, to teach the people the
          way of life, to point out to them the path by which they may
          regain the presence of their Father and God. Such is the
          testimony I have at the present time. I am aware that to some it
          seems incredible, and that in their ears it sounds preposterous
          to utter such words, and especially does it seem so to those who
          consider that they are living in the blaze of the Christian
          religion, for the large majority of that class of people will not
          for a moment entertain the idea that God will ever again speak to
          men upon the earth, or inspire them as he did anciently. They
          believe the day as gone by when such things can be, and that,
          having the Bible in their possession, it is no more necessary for
          God to make known his will to man. I am aware that the Christian
          world view it in this light, but I can not help that, I am not
          responsible for them, nor they for me. I stand for myself and am
          supported by the evidence which I have received from Almighty
          God. If they can testify to me that the Christian religion is
          true, I can, in turn, testify to them that God has revealed
          himself, that he has again spoken to men upon the earth, and that
          they hear his voice just as much as Isaiah, Ezekiel or any of the
          Prophets of ancient days. This is my testimony, and I know it to
          be true. By the same Spirit that revealed unto Peter his Lord and
          Savior I know that Jesus is the Christ. This has not become
          knowledge with me through the testimony of others alone. I sought
          and received that testimony for myself. Said Jesus unto Peter,
          "Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona, for flesh and blood hath not
          revealed it unto thee, but my father which is in heaven;" and I
          testify to you this day, that that same God has revealed unto me
          that these things are true, that this is the Gospel of Jesus
          Christ, and that this people represent the kingdom of God which
          Daniel and others of the ancient prophets said should be
          established upon the earth in the latter-days. That is the
          testimony which I have to offer here this morning. If I stood
          alone in this matter, and there was no other person who could
          bear the same testimony perhaps people would be justified in
          disbelieving me, that is, if I gave them no evidence of the truth
          of my words; but when the proof is positive and the evidences
          incontrovertible; when there are scores of thousands of people
          gathered from as well as scattered through the nations of the
          earth who can rise as one person and bear this testimony, the
          nations of the earth will be condemned if they reject it.
          It is true that Joseph Smith was an unsupported witness in some
          respects of the Gospel which he had to reveal unto the human
          family. He came forth a boy, alone; his testimony was given to
          the world, and God, in his wonderful providences, fulfilled the
          words of that boy, and others were induced to believe what he
          told them. He told the people that if they would obey the will of
          the Father, if they would repent of their sins, be baptized for
          the remission of them and have hands laid upon them for the
          reception of the Holy Ghost, they should receive it, and it
          should be a witness unto them that his words were true and
          Have the words of Joseph Smith been fulfilled in this and in
          other respects? I answer yes. He bore this mission unto the
          people, and it, with its promises, came to me, and I obeyed it,
          doing as I was told in order that I might obtain the evidences of
          the Holy Spirit. Did I obtain them? Yes I did; and here is a
          congregation before me, the representatives of a great people,
          who can bear witness with me this day that the words of Joseph
          the Prophet were true and faithful to this generation. Our
          testimony is not unsupported, for I have gone forth into the
          midst of the nations of the earth, and have stood before
          strangers and have said unto them--"If you desire the knowledge
          that the Prophets who were with Jesus on the earth possessed, if
          you will do those things which have been commanded you shall know
          of the doctrine whether I speak of myself, or of God who sent
          me." I have borne testimony hundreds of times to the nations of
          the earth, because I was sent forth to do it, and I had a
          testimony that it was my mission to testify of these things. What
          has been the result of the Elders going to the nations of the
          earth and bearing this testimony? We see before us a mighty
          people gathered in these mountains. There is scarcely an adult
          who has been gathered here who came with any other purpose but to
          build up the kingdom of God, because of the inspiration of the
          Holy Spirit which he or she received through obedience to the
          words which were declared unto them. If any have gathered here
          with any other purpose they are not in this Church, or if they
          are they will not remain in it very long. This people have
          gathered here by scores of thousands, can not those who are not
          of us put their prejudices to one side for a moment and take a
          fair and impartial view of the circumstances which surround us?
          Can not the world look upon the Latter-day Saints and ask
          themselves--"Is it possible for men to make these promises, and
          yet be impostors and deceive the people to the extent they have?"
          Have the Elders deceived the people? It looks to me like folly in
          the extreme for people to entertain such an idea. Have we
          deceived the people? No sirs, we have not. Were those words false
          which were uttered by the Elders when they called upon the people
          to repent? No. The people verily received that testimony of the
          truth of this work by the inspiration of the Holy Ghost which was
          promised them by the Elders, and that is the reason why so many
          have gathered to these mountains.
          But the majority of people now are like the Jews when they
          arraigned Jesus--they want a miracle. "Then did they spit in his
          face and buffetted him; and others smote him with the palms of
          their hands, saying, Prophecy unto us, thou Christ, who is he
          that smote thee." That is exactly the same spirit that prevails
          now--"If you latter day Saints have the blessings and gifts you
          talk of, why don't you rise up in power? Why does not God come
          out of his hiding place and preserve you from your enemies?" I
          can testify to-day that he has done so. From my earliest
          recollections I have been wandering with this people. I have been
          with them when driven before their enemies, with my father and
          his family in their persecutions, and I know, as I know that I
          live, that God has stretched out his hand and preserved this
          people when nothing but his providences could have saved them.
          Who are they who smite this people? Are they righteous men, men
          who are seeking to benefit the human family? Are they men who are
          turning their whole attention to benefit their fellow-men, or
          building up principles of righteousness and truth, to sustain the
          poor, and to gather them from the nations of the earth to a land
          where they can possess those comforts and blessings which should
          surround the sons and daughters of our God? No, they do not busy
          themselves about such things as these, they have business on
          hand, which they think is more important; they have the
          Latter-day Saints to persecute. They do not have time to turn
          their attention, nor their minds to such trifles as bringing the
          poor from the nations of the earth or developing the resources of
          this great country. They have no time for this, they have a far
          greater work on hand, opposing the progress of this people and
          the fulfillment of the prophecies of men of God who have lived
          upon this earth. That is the view I take of it from my
          standpoint. Of course I do not expect others, outside of the
          Church, to look at it as I do. But this people are engaged in
          what? First, at the present time, in defending themselves, trying
          to secure their lives and property from men who are seeking to
          deprive them of both; they are also continuing their efforts to
          bring the downtrodden of Europe and every other nation, to this
          land of America, where they can enjoy freedom and religious
          liberty, and have a home and not be servants of those who are
          more wealthy than themselves. This people are expending millions
          of dollars to gather the poor from the nations of the earth that
          they, with us, may enjoy the blessings of religious liberty, and
          the blessings of this free land.
          Why don't these men who are persecuting us, and all the time
          telling how mean and contemptible we are as a people turn their
          attention, not to our sins, but to their own shortcomings, and
          pick the beam out of their own eyes before attending to the mote
          in ours, and then try to do something to ameliorate the condition
          of the human family? These are simply my views on this subject,
          and I would to God that every man in this great nation would do
          right himself and not seek to persecute his neighbors because he
          thinks they are doing wrong! A man might do a thing in which,
          according to his conscience, he would be perfectly justified, but
          from my standpoint it would be very wicked. A heathen might be
          justified in doing that which I should consider a great crime.
          Shall I go to work and persecute an individual that does not see
          exactly as I see? Should I be justified in doing this? No. If I
          see a person in the wrong I am justified in going to him and
          trying to teach him the principles of the Gospel which I find
          contained in the Bible, and which God has revealed to the human
          family for their salvation; in other words, I should be justified
          in trying to lead him in what I believe to be the path of
          righteousness, but I should not be justified in trying to drive
          Is this the course that is being pursued with us? By no means.
          The spirit manifested towards us continually is--"If you don't do
          as we say we will force you." Nobody comes here to persuade us,
          their object is to compel us to bow to their wishes. They wish to
          make us forsake that which we revere and consider holy, simply
          because they despise it, and deride it as something that ought to
          be put down by force. It is not a Christian spirit that induces
          persecution, not at all. Why not take the example of Jesus, whom
          they profess to worship? If this people are wrong, convince them
          of their error. "Oh," say they, "we can't do it." It is like the
          King of Denmark, Frederick the Seventh, if I mistake not. The
          Priests complained to him and said that they could not put down
          the Latter-day Saints, and that they were proselyting in spite of
          all they could do. Said the King--"Why don't you take the Bible,
          and confound them and let the people see their errors?' The
          Priests said--"We have tried that, but have not succeeded, they
          have more arguments in the Bible than we have." "Well," said the
          King, "I think yours is the poorest religion of the two, I will
          let the Latter-day Saints go on, and shall not interfere with
          them." I would like this position to be taken by those in this
          nation who are opposed to us. But they will not assume this
          position, for we can correct them with the Scriptures of divine
          truth. Why do they not use the word of God in their operations
          against us, instead of the carnal weapons which they happen to
          have because they belong to a certain party? Why not imitate the
          example of Jesus and try and persuade us if we are in the wrong,
          and put us in the right. We desire to be saved; it is salvation
          we hope for. It is the desire for salvation in the kingdom of God
          that prompts me to say these things; and as long as God shows to
          me that I am right, as long as I have an approving conscience
          before him in carrying out the doctrines which I believe in, so
          long, with the help of God, will I advocate them, let the issue
          be what it may. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / John
          Taylor, October 7, 1874
                            John Taylor, October 7, 1874
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER JOHN TAYLOR,
           Delivered at the Semi Annual Conference of the Church of Jesus
                                      Christ of
              Latter-day Saints, in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                                  October 7, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          I am happy to have the opportunity of meeting with the brethren
          and to talk over the affairs pertaining to the kingdom of God in
          this Conference. We are engaged in a work in which all of us are
          interested, individually and collectively. It is a work that
          differs from anything else that exists at the present time on the
          face of the earth, and in many respects in differs from anything
          that ever has existed. I do not know that we are in any wise
          responsible for this, or for the position in which we find
          ourselves. The circumstances with which we are surrounded are
          not, particularly or specially, of our own making, nor the
          principles in which we believe. We have an abiding faith, as we
          heard referred to this morning, in certain principles which have
          emanated from the heavens; and we find ourselves on the earth at
          this particular time, in this peculiar dispensation, and engaged
          in a work that is dependent, I was going to say, altogether upon
          the Almighty, and which is part and parcel of that programme
          which existed in his mind before the world rolled into existence.
          There have been different dispensations existing in the various
          ages of time, as the purposes of God have rolled on in relation
          to this earth; all of them, more or less, partook of the same
          principles that have been revealed unto us, that is so far as the
          Gospel is concerned, but all of them more or less differing.
          The first command given to man was to be fruitful, to multiply
          and replenish the earth; in other words, an earth had been
          created, and it was necessary, as it had been brought into
          existence and man placed upon it, that his seed should be
          propagated, that there might be bodies prepared for spirits to
          inhabit, that they together might accomplish certain purposes, in
          the designs of God, pertaining to the creation of the earth.
          By and by we find the people departing from the principles of
          truth, from the laws of the Gospel, repudiating the fear of God,
          grieving his Holy Spirit and incurring his displeasure. Then a
          flood came and the inhabitants of the world, with the exception
          of a very few, were swept from it, after the Gospel had been
          preached to all who then lived and all had had an opportunity to
          believe in and obey it. A few of them did so and lived in the
          fear of God, and, according to the revelations which we have,
          they were translated and caught up, they had a separate existence
          from those who lived upon the earth, and occupied the position of
          translated beings and were necessarily governed by other laws
          than the denizens of the earth. This was one peculiarity of the
          dispensation before the flood. Then came the flood, which many
          people, unacquainted with things as they existed in the bosom of
          God and with his purposes and designs, consider was a great
          cruelty, an act of tyranny, evincing a spirit of outrage and
          oppression upon the inhabitants of the world. Sceptics reason in
          this manner sometimes, the only reason of their caviling being
          that they do not understand God or his laws and designs in
          relation to the earth and the inhabitants that live upon it, and
          being ignorant of these things they are not competent judges as
          to the fitness of things generally, and the course pursued by the
          Almighty in relation to the inhabitants of the earth, hence they
          arrive at all kinds of foolish conclusions. The fact is there
          were certain ideas connected with the destruction of the world
          that were good, proper and merciful. Mankind had committed unto
          them certain powers, among which was the power to perpetuate
          their own species, of which they could not according to the laws
          of nature be deprived while living. And they had a certain agency
          of their own, which they could act upon, and the people who were
          destroyed in the flood had departed from the laws of God. Man has
          a dual being, not only a body or mortal tabernacle, but a spirit,
          and that spirit existed before he came here; and if men before
          the flood had been allowed to go on in their iniquities and if,
          with every thought and imagination of their hearts, which were
          all unlawful and evil, they had been allowed to perpetuate that
          kind of existence, of course God would have had very little to do
          with the operations of the earth and the inhabitants thereof, it
          would therefore have been unjust to the spirits created by our
          Father in the eternal worlds to force them to come and inhabit
          the degenerated bodies which they must have received from such
          characters as the generation drowned in the flood; and hence God
          took away their agency by destroying them from the face of the
          earth, because they were prostituting their powers to an improper
          use and not only injuring themselves by defying the law of God,
          but also inflicting an evil upon unborn generations by perverting
          their own existence and by their powers of procreation entailing
          misery upon millions of spirits that had a just right to look for
          protection from their Father. The Almighty therefore took this
          awful method to redress this aggravated wrong and he had a right
          to do it. Why, our stockraisers act upon that principle a good
          deal. I was talking to one of them a little while ago who had a
          large flock of sheep, and he told me that he had got some better
          stock, and was going to kill off the poor ones in order that he
          might raise only good stock and a better breed than he then had.
          I suppose that God had as much right to do this as sheep raisers
          and cattle raisers have, and thus by cutting off that wicked
          generation from the earth he deprived them of the privilege of
          propagating their own species. And what then? Oh, they were all
          damned. No, they were not quite, yes they were in part and partly
          not. God understands all these things and manages matters
          according to the counsel of his will, and hence he provided a way
          whereby the people who were then drowned, who would not listen to
          God's law and who had departed entirely from the precepts of
          Jehovah, might hereafter have a chance of obeying the laws of
          life and salvation. Well, were they not all tee-totally doomed to
          go and be roasted in flames forever and ever. Not quite; for we
          read that Jesus, when he was put to death in the flesh, was
          quickened in the spirit, by which he went and preached to the
          spirits in prison that sometime were disobedient in the days of
          Noah, when once the long-suffering of God waited upon them in
          those days. Hence we see that instead of being eternally damned,
          Jesus went to preach the Gospel of life and salvation to those
          whom God, in the days of Noah, swept off by the flood, in order
          that he might introduce another state of things, and try to raise
          up a people who would listen to his laws and obey.
          The Scriptures say that Jesus went and preached to the spirits in
          prison, the same as he had preached to others on the earth. What
          did he preach? Do the Scriptures say what he came to preach? Yes,
          they say "he came to preach the Gospel to the poor, to bind up
          the broken-hearted, to set at liberty those who were bound, and
          to open the prison doors to the captive." That is what he came to
          do, and he did it.
          We are not connected with a something that will exist only for a
          few years, some of the peculiar ideas and dogmas of men, some
          nice theory of their forming; the principles that we believe in
          reach back to eternity, they originated with the Gods in the
          eternal worlds, and they reach forward to the eternities that are
          to come. We feel that we are operating with God in connection
          with those who were, with those who are, and with those who are
          to come.
          We find that after the days of Noah an order was introduced
          called the patriarchal order, in which every man managed his own
          family affairs, and prominent men among them were kings and
          priests unto God, and officiated in what is known among us as the
          Priesthood of the Son of God, or the Priesthood after the Order
          of Melchizedek. Man began again to multiply on the face of the
          earth, and the heads of families became their kings and priests,
          that is, the fathers of their own people, and they were more or
          less under the influence and guidance of the Almighty. We read,
          for instance, in our revelations pertaining to these matters, of
          a man called Melchizedek, who was a great high priest. We are
          told that "there were a great many high priests in his day, and
          before him and after him;" and these men had communication with
          God, and were taught of him in relation to their general
          proceeding, and acknowledged the hand of God in all things with
          which they were associated. Noah and his descendants, for a
          length of time, did that which was right in the sight of God to a
          very great extent, but by and by they departed from his law, and
          Abraham was raised up as a special agent in the hand of the
          Almighty to disseminate correct principles among the people, and
          as a medium through which God would communicate intelligence and
          blessings to the human family. He went through a very rigid
          course of discipline, and was tried in almost every possible way,
          until, finally, he was called upon to offer up his son; and then,
          when he attempted to do that, and the Lord had fully proved him,
          the Lord said--"I know that Abraham fears me, that he had not
          withheld his only son from me, and I know that he will command
          his children after him to fear my name." After God had tried
          Abraham, he took him on to a mountain and said unto him--"Lift up
          thine eyes eastward and westward, and southward and northward,
          for to thee and they seed after thee will I give this land; and
          in thee and in they seed shall all the families of the earth be
          blessed." That was a great blessing, and it placed Abraham in a
          most prominent and important position before God, before the
          people, and before the world. Now, although God made that promise
          unto Abraham, yet Stephen, who lived some two thousand years
          afterwards, said that "God gave him none inheritance in that
          land, no not so much as to set his foot on, yet he promised that
          he would give it to him and to his seed after him." There was a
          something peculiar about all these men--being in possession of
          the everlasting Priesthood, which is without beginning of days or
          end of years, they measured things with the eye of the Almighty,
          by the principle of faith, by the knowledge and intuition which
          the Spirit of God gave them, and the revelations which it
          imparted, and they felt like one of old who said--"When a man
          dies shall he live again? All the days of my life to my appointed
          time will I wait until the change come." Inspired by the Spirit
          of the living God, in possession of the principles of revelation,
          holding the keys of the everlasting Priesthood, which unlocked
          the mysteries of the kingdom of God, they looked forward and
          backward, and felt that they were a part of the great programme
          which God designed to accomplish in regard to the earth. It was
          not for the immediate possession of some temporary good; not for
          the grasping of something that they could hold for the time being
          that they were anxious; but they were after riches, exaltations,
          glory and blessings that would continue "while life or thought or
          being lasts or immortality endures."
          From the loins of Abraham a great many great Prophets, seers,
          revelators, men of God, kings, princes and authorities descended;
          and they raised up a nation that was powerful in its day and
          generation. But they, like others, finally departed from the laws
          of God and from the principles of eternal truth, and then the
          power of the Melchizedek Priesthood was withdrawn from them, and
          the law was added because of transgression, and although they
          became a numerous, great, wealthy, wise and intelligent people,
          yet they lost for a long time the power, intelligence, life and
          light of revelation which the Gospel imparts.
          Then came the time when Jesus appeared on the earth. He was "a
          lamb slain from before the foundation of the world," and he came
          to accomplish things which had been planned by the Almighty
          before the world was. He was the Being to whom the antediluvians,
          and Abraham, and Isaac and Jacob, and the Prophets, Patriarchs
          and those who were filled with the Spirit of God and the light of
          revelation referred to, and to whom the looked; to him pointed
          all their sacrifices and the shedding of the blood of bulls and
          goats, heifers, lambs, &c. Jesus introduced the Gospel, and if
          the people would have received and obeyed the principles which he
          taught, the kingdom of God would have been established, the
          dispensation of the fullness of times brought in, and in the
          Temple at Jerusalem the baptisms for the dead would have gone on,
          and the redemption of the living and the dead would have
          proceeded. But the people could not receive the teaching of
          Jesus. Here was a dispensation different from any of the others.
          There was an Elias to come, who was to turn the hearts of the
          children to the fathers, and the hearts of the fathers to the
          children; and when it was asked Jesus--"Art thou the Elias which
          was to come, or do we look for another?" it was told them, "This
          is he if ye can receive it." But they could not, and consequently
          they beheaded John the Baptist and crucified Jesus, and it was
          declared that not one stone of their magnificent Temple should be
          left upon another without being thrown down, which was literally
          fulfilled, and the ground upon which it stood was ploughed over.
          Jesus told his disciples that when they saw "Jerusalem
          encompassed about with armies they were to flee to the
          mountains." One of the Prophets, in speaking of the affairs that
          were then to take place, said that a certain power should arise
          which should prevail against the Saints, and the that power
          should seek to change the times and the law, and that they should
          be given into his had, for a time, and times and the dividing of
          times. Very well, these things have taken place.
          We now turn our attention to this continent, and find that God
          transplanted a people who were of the seed of Abraham, from
          Palestine to this continent. Here they passed through all kinds
          of vicissitudes and changes, sometimes abounding in iniquity and
          vice, at other times full of virtue; sometimes they acknowledged
          the hand of God, and at other times disregarded it; sometimes
          they were chastened by the almighty, and at other times permitted
          to go on in their iniquities. At one time there was a people on
          this continent who lived for nearly two hundred years in the fear
          of God, under the direction of his spirit, governed by the laws
          of the Gospel, and they had all things common among them, and we
          are informed that there never was a more united, happy and
          prosperous people upon the face of the earth.
          These are some of the changes that have taken place here. And
          now, we are living in another age and under other circumstances.
          The world is waxing old; myriads of people have lived upon it,
          generation after generation have come and gone, some good, some
          bad, some very wicked, some very righteous; some pure and holy,
          others to the contrary, embracing every kind, and all the
          peculiar phases that have been developed by the human family.
          They have come into existence and they have died, and what of
          them? What of the good and what of the bad? What of the righteous
          and what of the unrighteous? What of the nations that have
          existed, that do exist and that will exist? These are things,
          which, as intelligent, immortal beings, demand our consideration.
          And what of us as part of them? We need to reflect, and it is
          proper that we should understand something in relation to these
          things. We have our part to perform. We find ourselves in the
          world in this day and age, which is that which was spoken of by
          Paul--"the dispensation of the fulness of times, when God would
          gather together all things in one, whether they be things in the
          heavens or things on the earth." There is something very
          remarkable, very peculiar in that expression. What the gathering
          is in the heavens it is not for us to say at the present time;
          what the gathering is on the earth we have some little idea of
          from the things with which we are associated. There was a
          peculiarity about it. As I said before, we find ourselves living
          in this day, and we are called upon to perform a certain work in
          connection with the economy and designs of God pertaining to the
          earth we live on, pertaining to ourselves, to our progenitors and
          to the whole human family that have existed upon the face of the
          earth. We are here to do a certain work which God has set us to
          do, and, as I have said, we have had very little to do in
          bringing about the matter. We did not originate it. We talk
          sometimes about Joseph Smith, he did not originate it. He told us
          about a great many things that we talk about and unfolded many
          principles unto us. But how did he know them? God called him and
          set him apart as he called Noah in his day, and as he called
          Enoch, Abraham and Moses in their day, and as he called the
          Prophets and Jesus in their day, as he called Nephi, Lehi, Moroni
          and Alma in their day upon this continent. He has called us, and
          has introduced to our view certain principles, and we have been
          learning these principles gradually. The first thing was to get
          baptized, a very simple affair, a very little thing, nevertheless
          it was an ordinance of God, he appointed it, and we went and were
          baptized. Then we had hands laid upon us for the reception of the
          Holy Ghost, and we partook more or less of its influence,
          according to our faithfulness and diligence in keeping the
          commandments of God.
          We had not anything to do with originating this work; neither had
          Joseph Smith, neither had Oliver Cowdery, nor Brigham Young, nor
          any of the Twelve, nor the first Council, nor the Bishops, nor
          any other man living. God had his work to perform, and at the
          proper time and in his own way he will fulfill his own purposes
          and build up his kingdom. He commenced it at his own time, and he
          called Joseph Smith and gave him revelation. He told him about
          the ancient history of the people of this continent and enabled
          him to translate it, he gave him a key to all these things. He
          could not have done it without any more than you or I could. He
          was indebted to God, just as much as you and I are, and so were
          his brethren who were with him. Joseph Smith had many
          revelations, but who gave them to him, by what spirit and
          intelligence were they unfolded and communicated to his mind? God
          revealed them to him, he obeyed the behests of Jehovah. When God
          called him and set him apart he was obedient, just the same as
          you and I were. When the Elders of Israel came forth to preach
          the everlasting Gospel we obeyed it and, through obedience, we
          obtained the Spirit of God, and that brought us into the position
          which we occupy at the present time.
          And now about the gathering, who understood anything about it.
          The ancient Prophets prophesied about it, but what did we know
          about it, or what do the world to-day know about it? Nothing,
          only as it has been revealed. If God had not revealed it we
          should have been as ignorant as the rest of mankind are. And so
          we should about our sealings, and the covenants that men and
          women make with one another, that the fools around us do not
          comprehend; they think we are fools, but we know they are; that
          is the difference between us. We know they are ignorant, brutish,
          foolish and know not God nor his laws, nor the principles of
          truth; but we know something about these things, because God has
          revealed them to us.
          We heard this morning that this was a time in which to build
          Temples, and you know that we are now engaged in a work of that
          kind. Why are we thus engaged? Is it for our sakes only? God
          forbid. The Gospel that we preach is not for ourselves only. We
          have not preached it these many years that we might make money by
          it. I have traveled a great many thousands of miles to preach
          this Gospel without purse and without scrip, and I see many men
          around and before me who have done the same thing. Was it for
          ourselves? No. Was it because it was pleasant? No, but God had
          revealed certain principles to us pertaining to the salvation of
          the world in which we live, he had committed a dispensation of
          the Gospel to us, and it was woe unto us if we preached not that
          Gospel, whether we liked it or not. But we did like it, and we
          went forth in the name of Israel's God, and God went with us and
          sanctioned our testimony by his Spirit, and by the gift of the
          Holy Ghost. We could not have done these things or I will
          acknowledge that I could not, neither could any of my brethren,
          unless God had been with us, we had not sufficient faith and
          intelligence; but God imparted his Spirit, his intelligence and
          the gift of the Holy Ghost to the Elders of Israel, and they went
          forth bearing precious seed, the seed of eternal life, and they
          came again rejoicing and bring their sheaves with them, and here
          they are gathered into the garner. What for? For ourselves? No,
          we are, or ought to be co-workers with God in the accomplishment
          of his purposes in relation to the world in which we live, and
          people that have lived before us, and those that shall come after
          us. The principles which we are in possession of emanated from
          God. The Priesthood which God has revealed emanated and
          originated with the Gods in the eternal worlds; it is the
          principle by which they are governed and by which God governs all
          things which exist, and we, as the servants of God, acknowledge
          the hand of God in all these things. Can I preach, do I have any
          intelligence? God imparted it. Can my brethren preach? have they
          any intelligence? God imparted it. Did Joseph Smith or Brigham
          Young have intelligence? God imparted it. Have we been delivered
          at various times, and has the hand of God been manifested in our
          behalf? Yes, or we could not have been here to-day, the powers of
          darkness would have prevailed against us, the enemies of Zion
          would have put their feet upon our necks, and would have trampled
          us to the dust of death long ago. We talk about the intelligence
          that has been manifested in connection with this work. Where did
          it come from? It came from God. As you heard this morning, God,
          in answer to the prayers of thousands, has inspired his servants
          and has given them intelligence to carry on his work, and it has
          been carried on under the influence, guidance and direction of
          the Spirit of God. Without that none of us could have done
          anything more than the rest of mankind. Who led us? God. Who has
          sustained us here? God, and who will continue to sustain us? The
          Almighty. These fools who think they can trample under foot the
          servants of God, and overthrow the kingdom of God are reckoning
          without their host, they are pushing against the buckler of the
          Great Jehovah, and they will find that he will put a hook into
          their nose and lead them in a path they know not of. Israel will
          rise and shine, and the power of God will rest upon his people,
          and the work that he has commenced will roll forth "until the
          kingdoms of this world shall become the kingdoms of our God and
          his Christ, and he shall rule for ever and ever." The purposes of
          God are not going to be thwarted by the folly, vanity and
          ignorance of men; and as we had very little to do with
          introducing these things, we have really very little to do with
          carrying them on. Somebody was speaking this morning, in
          reference to certain men who thought that, if they left the
          Church, the work would not go on; that is perfectly ridiculous.
          There are certain things that have to be accomplished in the
          economy of God, and no man or combination of men can stop them,
          no influence that the world can exert can hinder them, for God is
          at the helm, and he will roll forth is own work. Hear it, you men
          of the world, you cannot go further than God will let you, any
          more than the Latter-day Saints can. It is in God's work that we
          are engaged. There is nothing really selfish about our operations
          when we come right down to the bottom of the work; for we are all
          engaged with God, and with the spirits of just men made perfect,
          and with the Priesthood that have existed before us, and with the
          intelligences that surround the throne of God; with all these
          intelligences we are united in the grand work of rolling forth
          the designs and purposes of God. You do not have the Latter-day
          Saints only to fight against, but you have to fight all the just
          and good who have lived and died on the earth, and who live
          again; and besides these you have to fight with God and his
          angels and the intelligences who surround his throne.
          As Latter-day Saints, we are sometimes apt to think that we must
          look after ourselves individually. We are a good deal like the
          man who, when praying, said--"God bless me and my wife, my son
          John and his wife, us four and no more, amen." There was no
          philanthropy, benevolence or kind feeling towards the rest of
          mankind there, and too many of us feel a good deal in the same
          way. As Latter-day Saints we ought to feel--and when we feel
          right we shall feel--that we are the representatives of God upon
          the earth, that we are engaged in building up his kingdom; that
          we are living in an age when God designs to accomplish certain
          purposes, and we are desirous of co-operating with him in that
          labor, and it is our mission to help to save the living, to
          redeem the dead and to bring to pass the things spoken of by the
          Prophets. This is the position that we occupy, and a great many
          things have yet to be introduced before these things can be
          We are commencing to build Temples, and hence, as I said before,
          our dispensation differs from others which have preceded it. It
          is kind of a time for settling up accounts. You know when a man
          goes to work on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday,
          he keeps account of what he does, and when Saturday comes it is a
          kind of settling-up day. The Elders have been forth and gathered
          together a few of the people to whom they have preached; others
          are gathering, and now we, at home here, are engaged in building
          Temples? What for, for ourselves? Yes. For somebody else? Yes.
          For our friends who have lived? Yes. For other people's friends
          who have lived? Yes, and to feel after all nations who have
          lived, for we are interested in the welfare of all the peoples
          who have ever existed on this earth, and like God we are feeling
          after them with a fatherly, kind, generous and philanthropic
          feeling. That is why we are building our Temples, that is why men
          are called upon to labor upon these Temples, for we desire to
          enter therein and to officiate and administer for the living and
          the dead.
          "Well, but it takes a little money." Oh, does it? Never mind, the
          gold and the silver are the Lord's, the cattle on a thousand
          hills are his, and we shall get a little of his gold and silver,
          and in using it in building temples to the name of the Lord we
          are taken into partnership with him, we unite with God, and with
          the angels, and with the spirits of just men made perfect, with
          the priesthood that existed anciently and with the Gods. We all
          unite together for the accomplishment of God's purposes, and we
          will feel after the Inhabitants of the earth. If people are
          foolish around us we cannot help that; let them go on and exhibit
          their folly, God will take care of us, he is as much interested
          about us as we are, and a good deal more. The ancient Nephites
          who lived on the earth, those men of God who, through faith,
          wrought righteousness, accomplished a good work and obtained
          exaltation, are as much interested in the welfare of their
          descendants as we are, and a good deal more; and Abraham, Isaac
          and Jacob, and those ancient men of God who once lived on the
          earth, and who yet live, are as much interested in the
          accomplishment of God's purposes as we are, and a good deal more.
          Well, then, what have we to do? Why to fulfill the duties
          devolving upon us as they come along day by day, and to introduce
          every principle that is calculated to save the living and redeem
          the dead. We are not alone in these things, others are operating
          with us, I mean all the men of God who ever lived, and they are
          as much interested as we are, and a good deal more, for they know
          more, and "they without us cannot be made perfect" neither can we
          be perfected without them. We are building temples for them and
          for their posterity, and we are going to operate in these
          temples, as we have done heretofore, for their welfare and for
          the welfare of their posterity. And then they are operating for
          us behind the vail with God and the intelligences with surround
          his throne; and there is a combination of earthly beings and of
          heavenly beings, all under the influence of the same priesthood,
          which is an everlasting priesthood, and whose administrations are
          effective in time and in eternity. We are all operating together,
          to bring about the same things and to accomplish the same
          Well then, what shall we do? We will build the temples. And don't
          you think we shall feel a little better while we are doing it? I
          think we shall, for while we are so doing we shall have the
          approbation of God our Heavenly Father, and of all good men who
          have ever lived, and we may need this by and by when we get
          through this world. These Gentiles do not need anything of this
          kind they are all going to heaven anyhow; but we want to make
          friends of the mammon of unrighteousness that when we fail they
          may receive us unto everlasting habitations. I want friends
          behind the vail. I want to be the friend of God and God to be my
          friend; I want to help to roll forth the Kingdom of God and to
          build up the Zion of the Most High, and I want to see my brethren
          engaged in the same work, and we will do it. In the name of
          Israel's God we will do it.
          We talk about the Order sometimes, well, we will do that too.
          What, would you? Yes, to be sure I would, or anything else that
          God wants of me. I am on hand, that is my feeling about these
          things. Well but, is there not a good many weaknesses to see? I
          think there is, don't you think there is about you? Just examine
          yourselves and then answer the question whether you have not a
          good many weaknesses. I think there are a great many things among
          us that we ought to be ashamed of. We are covetous grasping and
          grinding; there is not enough human sympathy, brotherhood and
          kindly feeling among us. Every man in Zion ought to feel that in
          every other he has a brother and a friend, and not a ravenous
          character who would grasp everything that he has and grind him to
          the dust of the earth. I want liberality, generosity, kindness
          and the love of God within us, and flowing around us like wells
          of water springing up to everlasting life. These are the
          principles by which we ought to be actuated and governed. Let the
          potsherds of the earth strive with the potsherds of the earth,
          God will take care of his own affairs and manage them his own
          way. Zion is onward, her progress can not and will not be
          retarded, I will prophesy it in the name of Israel's God. It is
          onward, onward, onward, until the purposes of God shall be
          accomplished, until the towers of Zion shall arise, until her
          temples shall be built, until the living shall be saved, until
          the dead shall be redeemed, and until "the knowledge of God shall
          cover the earth as the waters cover the sea."
          Let us, then, cleave to righteousness and truth, lay aside our
          folly, vanity and nonsense, our egotism, ignorance and
          covetousness and everything that is wicked, sinful, narrow and
          contracted, and let us feel that we are servants of God, engaged
          in rolling forth his kingdom and accomplishing his purposes upon
          the earth.
          May God help us to be faithful, in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / Orson
          Pratt, October 7, 1874
                            Orson Pratt, October 7, 1874
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER ORSON PRATT,
           Delivered at the Semi-Annual Conference of the Church of Jesus
                                      Christ of
              Latter-day Saints, in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                                  October 7, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          I have been requested, this afternoon, to preach upon the subject
          of marriage. It is a subject which has been often laid before the
          Latter-day Saints, and it is certainly one of great importance to
          the Saints as well as to the Inhabitants of the earth, for I
          presume that no person, who believes in divine revelation, will
          pretend to say that marriage is not a divine institution; and if
          this be the case, it is one which affects all the human family.
          I will select a passage of scripture in relation to this divine
          institution as it existed in the days of Moses. In selecting,
          however, this passage, I do not wish the congregation to suppose
          that we are under the law of Moses particularly. There are many
          great principles inculcated in that law which the Lord never did
          intend to come to an end or be done away--eternal principles,
          moral principles, then there are others that were done away at
          the coming of our Savior, he having fulfilled the law. Because we
          find certain declarations, contained in the law given to Moses,
          that does not prove that the Latter-day Saints are under that
          law; the same God that gave the law of Moses--the being that we
          worship--is just as capable of giving laws in our day as in
          Moses' day; and if he sees proper to alter the code given to
          Moses, and to give something varying from it, we have no right to
          say that he shall not do so. Therefore, in selecting the passage
          which I am about to read, it is merely to show what God did in
          ancient times, and that he may do something similar in modern
          In the 21st chapter of Exodus, speaking of a man who already had
          one wife, Moses, says--"If he take him another wife, her food,
          her raiment and her duty of marriage shall he not diminish." It
          will be recollected that this law was given to a polygamic
          nation. When I speak of a polygamic nation, I mean a nation that
          practised both plural and single marriage, and believed one form
          to be just as sacred as the other. Their progenitors or ancestors
          were polygamists; and they were considered patterns for all
          future generations. Their piety, holiness, purity of heart, their
          great faith in God, their communion with him, the great blessings
          to which they attained, the visions that were made manifest to
          them, the conversation that God himself, as well as his angels,
          had with them, entitled them to be called the friends of God, not
          only in their day, but they were considered by all future
          generations to be his friends. They were not only examples to the
          Jewish nation, but in their seed, the seed of these polygamists,
          all the nations and kingdoms of the earth were to be blessed.
          I hope that pious Christians in this congregation will not find
          fault this afternoon with their Bible, and with the Prophets and
          inspired men who wrote it. I hope that they will not find fault
          with God for selecting polygamists to be his friends. I hope that
          they will not find fault with Jesus because he said, some two
          thousand years or upwards after the days of these polygamists,
          that they were in the kingdom of God, and were not condemned
          because of polygamy. Jesus says, speaking of Abraham, Isaac and
          Jacob--"Many shall come from the east and from the west, from the
          north and from the south, and shall sit down with Abraham, Isaac
          and Jacob in the kingdom of God." Do not find fault with Jesus,
          you Christians, because he has these polygamists in his kingdom,
          and because he has said that the Gentiles will be blessed through
          the seed of these polygamists; neither find fault with him
          because he has taken these polygamists into his kingdom, and that
          many will come from the four quarters of the earth and have the
          privilege of sitting down with them therein.
          Jacob married four wives, and may be considered the founder of
          that great nation of polygamists. He set the example before them.
          His twelve sons, who were the progenitors of the twelve tribes of
          Israel, were the children of the fur wives of the prophet or
          patriarch Jacob. So sacred did the Lord hold these polygamists
          that he said, many hundred years after their death--"I am the God
          of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob, and this shall
          be my memorial unto all generations." Now, Christians, do not
          find fault if God chose these polygamists and, at the same time,
          wished to make them a sample, a memorial to all generations,
          Christians as well as Jews.
          Several hundred years after God raised up these, his friends, and
          founded or began to found the twelve tribes of Israel, he saw
          proper to raise up a mighty man called Moses to deliver the
          children of Israel from the bondage in which they had been
          oppressed and afflicted by the Egyptian nation. So great had this
          affliction become that the King of Egypt issued a decree
          commanding the Israelitish midwives to put to death all the male
          children, born among the Israelites. This murderous law was
          carried out. This was about eighty years before Moses was sent
          down from the land of Midian to deliver the children of Israel
          from this cruel bondage. How long this great affliction of
          putting to death the male children existed, is not given in the
          Bible; but it seems to have waxed worse and worse during the
          following eighty years, after which Moses was sent to deliver
          them. We may reasonably suppose that the oppressive hand of
          Pharaoh was not altogether eased up, but continued on for scores
          of years, destroying many of the male children, making a great
          surplus of females in that nation. A great multitude of females
          over and above that of males, will account for the peculiar
          passage of Scripture to which I will now refer you. It will be
          found in the 3rd chapter of Numbers. I have not time to turn to
          it and read it, but I will quote you the substance thereof. Moses
          and Aaron were commanded to number all the males in Israel from a
          month old and upward that were called the firstborn among the
          various tribes. Now the first born does not mean the oldest male
          child of the first wife, for sometimes the first wife has no
          children, but it means the first born son that is born to the
          father whether by the first wife, or second, or third, or any
          number of wives that he may have; the term firstborn pertains to
          the first male child that is born to the father. So it was
          accounted to Jacob's family of twelve sons. Reuben only was
          called the first born of Israel until he lost his birthright,
          through transgression, which, we are told in the 5th chapter of
          first Chronicles, was taken from him and given to one of the sons
          of Joseph. But so far as age or birth was concerned, Reuben was
          the firstborn; and had it not been for his transgression, he
          would have inherited a double portion of his father's substance,
          for that was the law in ancient times.
          Now how many of the firstborn could be found in the midst of
          Israel? We are told that there were twenty-two thousand two
          hundred and seventy-three firstborn males among the eleven
          tribes: the tribe of Levi was not reckoned at that time, but all
          the male members of the tribe of Levi, from a month old and
          upwards was twenty-two thousands souls. Now if the tribe of Levi
          numbered in proportion to the other eleven tribes, the number of
          firstborn males in al the twelve tribes would probably amount to
          between twenty-four and twenty-five thousand souls, it could not
          have run over that. There might have been some of the firstborn
          who were dead, which would make a few more families: then there
          might have been other families who never had any male children,
          which would increase the families still more. Supposing then, in
          order to give all the advantage possible, and to make as many
          families as we possibly can consistently, that we say, instead of
          twenty-five thousand firstborn in the midst of all Israel, that
          there were thirty thousand; that is allowing for all these
          contingencies I have named, where families have no males and
          those families that have male children under a month old which
          were not reckoned, and those families which might have had
          firstborn male children who died and the number might possibly be
          increased to four or five thousand more, making the total number
          of families about thirty-thousand.
          Thus we see that the number of firstborn males from a month old
          or upwards give us a clue to the number of families; we may not
          be able to determine the number exactly, but these data will
          enable us to approximate very closely. It is generally admitted,
          that Israel, at that time, numbered twenty-five hundred thousand
          souls. There might have been a variation from this of a few
          thousand souls, but according to the Scriptural and all other
          evidences that can be gleaned, the number above referred to is
          about the number of souls that existed in Israel at that time.
          Among that twenty-five hundred thousand souls then, there are
          thirty-thousand families. How many were there in a family? All
          that you have to do to tell how many there were in a family, is
          to divide twenty-five hundred thousand by thirty thousand and you
          will find that the quotient is eighty-three, showing that number
          of souls on an average in each family. Now if these families were
          all monogamic, how many children must have been born to each
          wife? Eighty-one.
          This argument is founded on Scripture, and it shows plainly, even
          if you should double the number of families or of the firstborn,
          that they could not be all monogamic families, for if we suppose
          there were sixty thousand families, it would make every married
          woman the mother of forty odd children, and if such a supposition
          could be entertained it would go to show that women in those days
          were more fruitful than they are now. These declarations are
          given in your Bible, which is also my Bible; that is, in King
          James' translation. We all believe, or profess to be Bible
          believers or Christians. Do not be startled my hearers at these
          declarations of your Bible. No wonder then that this passage
          which I have taken for my text was given to that people, because
          they were a people who needed to be guided in relation to their
          duty. "If a man take another wife," that is, after he has got
          one, if he take another one, "Her food"--whose food? the food of
          the first wife;--"her raiment," that is the raiment of the first
          wife, "her duty of marriage, he shall not diminish." Now this is
          plain, pointed and positive language in regard to polygamy as it
          existed among the house of Israel in ancient times. Why did not
          the Lord say, if polygamy were a crime or a sin--"If a man take
          another wife let all the congregation take him without the camp
          and stone him and put him to death?" or if that was too severe
          let them incarcerate him in a prison or dungeon for several
          years? If it be a crime why did he not say so? It is just as easy
          to say that, as to give directions as to what course a man shall
          pursue with regard to his first wife, if he take another one.
          This is Bible doctrine as it existed in those days. I know that
          it has been argued that the first woman, here spoken of, was
          merely a betrothed woman, and not married. But if this be so,
          what a curious saying this in our text--that her duty of marriage
          shall he not diminish if he take another wife. This and other
          expressions show clearly that they were both wives, and that
          there was a certain duty to be attended to by the husband,
          besides providing them with food and raiment. It was argued here
          in this tabernacle before some eight or ten thousand people, on a
          certain occasion, that the Hebrew word translated "duty of
          marriage," ought to have been translated "dwelling"--"Her food,
          her raiment and her dwelling he shall not diminish." I recollect
          asking the learned gentleman, Rev. Dr. Newman, why he translated
          it dwelling, instead of translating it as all other Hebraists
          have done? I asked him to produce one passage in all the Bible
          where the word translated "duty of marriage," meant a "dwelling,"
          but he could not do it. The Hebrew word for "dwelling," and the
          Hebrew word for "duty of marriage," are two entirely distinct
          words. I referred him to the learned professors in Yale College,
          and to many others who have translated this Hebrew word "duty of
          marriage." These professors and other learned translators, have
          referred to this special passage, and have translated it in two
          ways--one is "duty of marriage," and the other is cohabitation.
          Now, if this latter be correct--her food, her raiment and her
          cohabitation, shall not be diminished. I asked him why he varied
          in his translation of the Hebrew, from all these translators and
          lexicographers? His only answer was that he found a certain Jew
          in Washington who told him that it meant "dwelling," or rather
          that its original root referred to a "dwelling." I thought that
          was a very poor argument against all the translators of the
          Christian world, who are mostly monogamists. But we will pass on.
          I do not intend to dwell too long on these subjects.
          So far as the law of Moses is concerned, to prove that the house
          of Israel kept up their polygamous institution from generation to
          generation, let me refer you to another law to show that they
          were compelled to do this, or else to come out in open rebellion
          against the law of Moses. In the 25th chapter of Deuteronomy, we
          read something like this--"When brethren dwell together, and one
          of them die, the living brother shall take the widow of the
          deceased brother, and it shall come to pass that the firstborn
          that is raised up shall succeed in the name of his brother." This
          was a positive command given to all Israel. Now was this command
          confined to young men who were unmarried, or was it an unlimited
          command so far as living brothers were in existence? This is a
          question to be decided. There is nothing in all the Scriptures
          that makes any distinction between a married brother who survives
          and an unmarried brother; the law was just a binding upon a
          living brother, if he had already a wife living, as it was upon a
          living brother if he had no wife, it being a universal law, with
          no limits in its application, so far as the house was concerned.
          This law, then, compelled the children of Israel to be
          polygamists; for in many instances the living brother might be a
          married man, and in many instances there might be two or three
          brothers who would take wives and die without leaving seed, and
          in that case it would devolve upon the surviving brother to take
          all the widows. This law was not given for that generation alone,
          but for all future generations. Some may say, that when Jesus
          came, he came to do away that law. I doubt it. He came to do away
          the law of sacrifices and of burnt offerings, and many of those
          ordinances and institutions, rites and ceremonies which pertained
          to their tabernacle and temple, because they all pointed forward
          to him as the great and last sacrifice. But did he come to do
          away all these laws that were given in the five books of Moses?
          No. There are many of these laws that were retained under the
          Christian dispensation. One of the laws thus retained was
          repentance. The children of Israel were commanded to repent, and
          no person will pretend to say that Jesus came to do away the law
          of repentance. Another was the law of honesty, upright dealing
          between man and man; no one will pretend to say that that law
          ceased when Jesus came. The laws concerning families and the
          regulation of the domestic institutions were not intended to
          cease when Jesus came, and they did not cease only as they were
          disregarded through he wickedness of the children of men. The
          laws concerning monogamy, and the laws concerning polygamy were
          just as binding after Jesus had come, as they were before he
          came. There were some laws which Ezekiel says were not good.
          Jesus denounced them, and said they were given because of the
          hardness of the hearts of the children of Israel. Ezekiel says
          that God gave them statutes and the judgments by which they
          should not live. Why did he do it? Because of their wickedness
          and hardness of heart. I will tell you how this law became done
          away and ceased to exist among the children of Israel--It was in
          consequence of their rejection of the Messiah. In consequence of
          this their city was overthrown, and their nation destroyed,
          except a miserable remnant, which were scattered abroad among the
          Gentile nations, where they could not keep the law in regard to
          their brothers' widows. When John the Baptist was raised up to
          that nation, he must have found thousands on thousands of
          polygamists, who were made so, and obliged to be so, by the law
          which I have just quoted.
          Some of you may enquire--"Had not a surviving brother the right
          to reject that law of God?" He had, if he was willing to place
          himself under its penalty. I will quote you the penalty, and then
          you can see whether he could get away from polygamy or not. One
          penalty was that he should be brought before the Elders and that
          the widow whom he refused to marry, according to the law of God,
          should pluck his shoe from off his foot, and should then spit in
          his face, and from that time forth the house of that man should
          be denounced as the house of him that hath his shoe loosed, a
          reproach among all Israel. Instead of being a man of God, and a
          man to be favored by the people of God; instead of being a man
          such as the Christian world would now extol to the heavens
          because he rejected polygamy, he was a man to be scorned by all
          Israel. That was the penalty. Was that the only penalty? I think
          not. Read along a little further, and it says--"Cursed be he that
          continues not in all things written in this book of the law." Oh,
          what a dreadful penalty that was, compared with being reproached
          by the whole people! Oh, what a fearful curse upon a man that
          refused to become a polygamist, and would not attend to the law
          of God! A curse pronounced by the Almighty upon him, also the
          anathemas of all the people as well as from God! The word of the
          Lord was that all the people should say amen to this curse. Now,
          if I had lived in those days, I should not have considered it
          very desirable to bring myself under the curse of heaven, and
          then have the curse of all the twelve tribes of Israel upon my
          head. I should not have liked it at all. I would rather have gone
          into polygamy according to the command, even if it had subjected
          me to a term of five years in a penitentiary.
          We find many other passages, touching upon this subject. I will
          quote one, which will be found in the 21st chapter of
          Deuteronomy. It reads as follows: "If a man have two wives, one
          beloved and another hated, and they have borne him children, both
          the beloved and the hated; and if the first-born son be hers that
          was hated, then it shall be when he makes his sons to inherit
          that which he hath, that he may not make the son of the beloved,
          firstborn before the son of the hated, which is indeed the
          Now this applies to two classes of polygamists. First, to those
          who may have two wives living at the same time, and then to those
          who may have married two wives in succession. It applies to both
          classes, for both classes existed in those days, and the Lord
          gave this, not to condemn polygamy, not to do away with it, but
          to show that the individual who had two wives should be impartial
          in regard to his children. Did he approbate this man that might
          have two wives in his hatred of one, and in loving the other? No,
          he did not, but inasmuch as man is weak and may sin against God,
          and suffer himself to be overcome with prejudice and hatred to
          one person, and feel in his heart to love and respect another,
          the Lord gave laws in case any such crime should exist among them
          as a husband's hating one wife and loving another; he gave laws
          to regulate it, not that he approbated the hating part.
          As I have already proved to you that there were great and vast
          numbers of polygamic families in Israel, and that there were
          thousands of firstborn from these plural wives, these firstborn
          persons, whatever might be the conduct of their mothers, were
          entitled to their inheritance, namely a double portion of all
          that the father had to bestow. That was the law in ancient times.
          We might close here so far as the law of Moses is concerned, but
          I was to call your attention to a peculiar saying in this law.
          This law has got to be restored again. Says one--"You astonish me
          beyond measure, I thought it was done away for ever." Well,
          listen to what the Lord said to Israel in the closing of this
          book of Deuteronomy. When the children of Israel shall be
          scattered in consequence of their iniquities to the uttermost
          parts of the earth among all the nations, and their plagues shall
          be of long continuance, and they shall be cursed in their basket
          and in their store, and with numerous curses which he mentioned
          should come upon them; after these things had been of long
          continuance, the Lord says--"After they shall return unto me and
          hearken unto all the words contained in this book of the law,
          then I, the Lord God, will gather them out from all the nations
          whither they are scattered, and will bring them back into their
          own land." Oh, indeed! Then when they do absolutely return and
          hearken to all the words of the book of this law God has promised
          to gather them again; that is, they must enter into polygamy,
          they must believe when their brother dies and leaves no seed,
          that the surviving brother, though he has one, two, or half a
          dozen wives living, shall take that widow. That is part of the
          law, and they must fulfill all the words of this law, and then
          God has promised to gather them again. Says one, "When that is
          fulfilled it will be in the days of Christianity." We can't help
          it; polygamy belongs to Christianity, as well as the law of
          Says one--"The children of Israel have been scattered now some
          1800 years among all the nations and kindreds of the earth, in
          fulfillment of this curse, but if we believe that saying which
          you have just quoted, we are obliged to believe that the children
          of Israel are yet to return to attend to all these institutions,
          and that too while the Christian religion is in vogue, and that
          they are to regulate their households according to the law of
          God, whether those families are monogamic or polygamic." What
          will the good Christians think when that is fulfilled? They
          cannot help themselves, for God will not gather Israel until they
          do return with all their heart unto him, and hearken to and obey
          all the words of this law, written in this book. This is the word
          of the Lord, and how can you help yourselves? Says one "We will
          pass laws against them." That will not hinder, when God sets his
          hand to carry out his purposes, laws that may be passed by
          England, Denmark, Norway or any other Christian community will
          not hinder the Israelites from attending to all the words
          contained in the book of his law; for they will want to get back
          again to their own land.
               Inasmuch then as the Lord has promised to restore all things
          spoken of by the mouth of all the holy Prophets since the world
          began, supposing that he should begin this great work of
          restoration in our day, how are we going to help ourselves? I
          can't help it. Brigham Young, our President, can't help it;
          Joseph Smith could not help it. If God sees proper to accomplish
          this great work of restoration--the restitution of all things, it
          will include what the Prophet Moses has said, and it will bring
          back with it a plurality of wives. The 4th chapter of Isaiah
          could never be fulfilled without this restoration. The passage to
          which I refer is familiar to all the Latter-day Saints--"In that
          day the branch of the Lord shall be beautiful and glorious, and
          the fruit of the earth shall be excellent and comely; 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." Now will this prophecy ever
          be fulfilled, unless this great restoration or restitution shall
          take place? It cannot. If this great restitution does not take
          place, Jesus will never come, for it is written in the New
          Testament, in the 3rd chapter of the Acts of the Apostles, that
          "the heavens must receive Jesus Christ, until the times of the
          restitution of all things which God has spoken by the mouths of
          his holy Prophets, since the world began." Jesus will have to
          stay a long time in the heavens providing that monogamist
          principles are the only principles that will be introduced, in
          fact he never can come, for the Scriptures say the heavens must
          retain him until all things are restored.
          God has said that seven women shall take hold of one man for the
          purpose of having their reproach taken away, that they may be
          called by his name, not cast off as harlots or prostitutes; not
          to take away the name of the father from the children, and cast
          them into the streets, as the Christian nations have been doing
          for many long centuries that are past. But these seven women will
          be desirous of having the name of their husband for themselves
          and their children. Isaiah says it shall be so, and it will have
          to be under the Christian dispensation. How are the Christians
          going to get rid of this? Can you devise any way? Is there any
          possible way or means that you can think of that will put a stop
          to the Lord's fulfilling his word? I will tell you one way--if
          you will all turn infidels and burn up the Bible, and then begin
          to persecute, the devil will tell you that you can successfully
          overcome, and that God will never fulfill and accomplish his
          word; but if you profess to believe the Bible, by the Bible you
          shall be judged, for, saith the Lord, "My words shall judge you
          at the last day." The books will be opened, God's word will be
          the standard by which the nations will be judged; hence if you
          wish a righteous judgment I would say--Forbear, do not destroy
          the Bible because it advocates polygamy; but remember that every
          word of God is pure, so it is declared; and he has nowhere in
          this book, condemned plural marriage, even in one instance.
          I know that it has been argued that there is a law against
          polygamy; but in order to make the law the Scripture had to be
          altered. It is in that famous passage which has become a byword
          in the mouth of every schoolboy in our streets, Leviticus xviii.
          ch., 18 v. Now let us examine for a few moments that passage and
          see what it says. You will find that the fore part of this
          chapter forbids marriage between certain blood relations. Prior
          to this time it had been lawful for a man to marry two sisters.
          Jacob, for instance married Rachel and Leah, and there was no law
          against it prior to this time. It had also been lawful for a man
          to marry his own sister, as in the days of Adam, for you know
          there were no other ladies on the face of the earth for the sons
          of Adam except their own sisters, and they were obliged to marry
          them or to live bachelors. But the Lord saw proper when he
          brought the children of Israel out of Egypt into the wilderness,
          to regulate the law of marriage, so far as certain blood
          relations were concerned, called the law of consanguinity, which
          speaks of a great many relationships, and finally comes to a wife
          and her sister. This law was given to regulate the marriage
          relations of the children of Israel in the wilderness. It was not
          to regulate those who lived before that day who had married
          sisters; not to regulate those who might live in the latter days,
          but to regulate the children of Israel in that day. It reads
          thus: "Neither shalt thou take a wife to her sister, to vex her,
          to uncover her nakedness besides the other in her lifetime."
          This passage has been altered by certain monogamists in order to
          sustain their ideas of marriage, and we find in some large Bibles
          what are called marginal readings that these monogamists have put
          in, and instead of taking this in connection with all other blood
          relationships, they have altered it--Neither shalt thou take one
          wife to another. The men who translated King James' Bible were
          monogamists, yet they had sense enough to know that the original
          Hebrew would not bear that construction which has been given by
          later monogamists. The original Hebrew, when translated word for
          word, makes it just as King James' translators have made it. The
          Hebrew words are--Ve-ishaw elahotah-lo takkah. These are the
          original Hebrew words, and if they are translated literally, word
          for word, the translation stands just as it is in the text. But
          this is not saying but what the words, El-ahotah, under certain
          circumstances, are translated in another form, namely, one to
          another," "one sister to another," and I am willing that it
          should be translated that way. Then it would read--"Thou shalt
          not take one sister to another to vex her in her lifetime." So
          you may take it either way and it bears out King James'
          translation, or the meaning given by him.
          I do not profess to be a Hebraist to any very great extent,
          although I studied it sufficiently many years ago, to understand
          its grammatical construction, and to translate any passage in the
          Bible; but then, having lacked practice for many years, of course
          a person may become a little rusty in regard to these matters but
          I have searched out all the passages that can be found in the Old
          Testament, either singular or plural, masculine or feminine,
          pertaining to the words contained in this text, and I find a far
          greater number rendered according to the words that are here
          given, literally, in this text than what are translated--"one
          sister to another." But I am willing that this translation should
          be allowed.
          Now, if we thought the congregation would like to hear the
          translation of all this, and the reasons why, we could give it;
          but I presume that there are but few Hebrew scholars present, and
          if the translation were given, the great majority of the
          congregation would not understand whether it was translated
          correctly or not, and for that reason I shall not take up your
          time be referring to these technicalities. But I will make the
          broad statement, that there is not a Hebrew scholar living on
          this earth who can translate that passage from the words
          contained in the original Hebrew, without adding words of his
          own, not contained in the original text, if he translates it, as
          Dr. Newman did,--"one wife to another." If the first word--Ve
          ishaw means one, as he would try to have us understand, it does
          not mean wife also: but if it means wife, it cannot be translated
          as he has it, and therefore it cannot bear out that construction.
          But I see that I am dwelling too long on the subject of the law
          of Moses.
          Now I wish to come directly to the point in regard to polygamy as
          it exists at the present time among the Latter-day Saints. I
          stated in the beginning of my remarks, that polygamy, or any
          other institution that was given at one age, might not be binding
          upon another, without a fresh revelation from God. I made that
          statement when I was discussing that subject in this house. I
          still say, that we are not under the necessity of polygamy
          because God gave laws and commandments for its observance and
          regulation in ancient times. Why then do the Latter-day Saints
          practice polygamy? That is a plain question. I will answer it
          justs as plainly. It is because we believe, with all the
          sincerity of our hearts, as has been stated by former speakers
          from this stand, that the Lord God who gave revelations to Moses
          approbating polygamy, has given revelations to the Latter-day
          Saints, not only approbating it, but commanding it, as he
          commanded Israel in ancient times.
          Now let us reason on this point. If God did do such things in
          former ages of the world, why not the same Being, if he sees
          proper, perform the same or similar things in another age of the
          world? Can any one answer this? If God saw proper to give certain
          laws in ancient times, and then to revoke them; or if he saw
          proper to give laws that were not revoked, but done away by the
          transgressions of the children of men, has he not a right, and is
          it not just as consistent for the same Divine Being to give laws,
          for instance, in the 19th century, concerning our domestic
          relations, as it was for him to do it in the days of Moses? And
          if he has that right, as we Latter-day Saints believe that he
          has, are not the people's consciences just as sacred in regard to
          such laws in these days, as the consciences of ancient Israel? or
          must there be some power to regulate our religious consciences?
          Here is a grand question. Shall our religious consciences be
          regulated by civil government or civil laws, or shall we have the
          privilege or regulating them according to the divine law of the
          Bible, or any divine law that may be given in accordance with the
          ancient Bible? I answer that, when I was a boy, I thought I lived
          in a country in which I could believe in anything that agreed
          with, or that could be proved by the Bible, whether it was in the
          law of Moses or in the doctrines of the New Testament. I really
          thought the Jews had a right to reject Christ, or, in other
          words, if they had not the right to do it morally, they had the
          right, so far as civil law in concerned, to reject this Messiah,
          and to believe in and practice the law of Moses in our land; but
          I am told, that such liberty of conscience is not to be tolerated
          in our Republican government. If the Jews should collect in any
          great numbers, and should say one to another--"Come brethren, we
          are the descendants of Abraham, let us now begin to practice
          according to the laws that were given to our ancient fathers, and
          if a brother dies and leaves a widow, but no children, let his
          living brother, though a married man, marry the widow, according
          to our law," it is doubtful whether they would be permitted to
          associate together and practice those laws now, if they were so
          disposed. Why? Because the prejudice of the people is so great
          that they are not willing others should believe in the whole
          Bible but only in such portions as agree with their ideas. If we
          were instituting a practice that the Lord God never approbated,
          but for the punishment of which he had prescribed penalties, or
          if we were introducing something foreign and contrary to the
          Bible, then there would be some excuse for the people in saying
          that such a thing should not be practiced in the name of
          religion. But when we take the Bible as a standard in relation to
          crime, it is altogether another thing; and I do think that every
          American citizen who professes to believe in any part or portion
          of that sacred record, on which all the laws of Christendom
          pretend to be founded, has the right to do so, and to practice
          it, and that, too, without being molested.
          Now, after having said so much in relation to the reason why we
          practice polygamy, I want to say a few words in regard to the
          revelation on polygamy. God has told us Latter-day Saints that we
          shall be condemned if we do not enter into that principle; and
          yet I have heard now and then (I am very glad to say that only a
          few such instances have come under my notice,) a brother or a
          sister say, "I am a Latter-day Saints, but I do not believe in
          polygamy." Oh, what an absurd expression! what an absurd idea! A
          person might as well say, "I am a follower of the Lord Jesus
          Christ, but I do not believe in him." One is just as consistent
          as the other. Or a person might as well say, "I believe in
          Mormonism, and in the revelations given through Joseph Smith, but
          I am not a polygamist, and do not believe in polygamy." What an
          absurdity! If one portion of the doctrines of the Church is true,
          the whole of them are true. If the doctrine of polygamy, as
          revealed to the Latter-day Saints is not true, I would not give a
          fig for all your other revelations that came through Joseph Smith
          the Prophet; I would renounce the whole of them, because it is
          utterly impossible, according to the revelations that are
          contained in these books, to believe a part of them to be
          divine--from God--and part of them to be from the devil; that is
          foolishness in the extreme; it is an absurdity that exists
          because of the ignorance of some people. I have been astonished
          at it. I did hope there was more intelligence among the
          Latter-day Saints, and a greater understanding of principle than
          to suppose that any one can be a member of this Church in good
          standing and yet reject polygamy. The Lord has said, that those
          who reject this principle reject their salvation, they shall be
          damned, saith the Lord; those to whom I reveal this law and they
          do not receive it, shall be damned. Now here comes in our
          consciences. We have either to renounce Mormonism, Joseph Smith,
          Book of Mormon, Book of Covenants, and the whole system of things
          as taught by the Latter-day Saints, and say that God has not
          raised up a Church, has not raised up a prophet, has not begun to
          restore all things as he promised, we are obliged to do this, or
          else to say, with all our hearts, "Yes, we are polygamists, and
          believe in the principle, and we are willing to practice it,
          because God has spoken from the heavens."
          Now I want to prophecy a little. It is not very often that I
          prophecy, though I was commanded to do so, when I was a boy. I
          want to prophecy that all men and women who oppose the revelation
          which God has given in relation to polygamy will find themselves
          in darkness; the Spirit of God will withdraw from them from the
          very moment of their opposition to that principle, until they
          will finally go down to hell and be damned, if they do not
          repent. That is just as true as it is that all the nations and
          kingdoms of the earth, when they hear this Gospel which God has
          restored in these last days, will be damned if they do not
          receive it; for the Lord has said so. One is just as true as the
          other. I will quote this latter saying, as recorded in the Book
          of Covenants. The Lord said to the Elders of this Church, in the
          very commencement as it were, "Go ye forth and preach the Gospel
          to every creature, and as I said unto mine ancient Apostles, even
          so I say unto you, that every soul who believes in your words,
          and will repent of his sins and be baptized in water shall
          receive a remission of his sins, and shall be filled with the
          Holy Ghost; and every soul in all the world who will not believe
          in your words, neither repent of his sins, shall be damned; and
          this revelation or commandment is in force from this very hour,
          upon all the world," as fast as they hear it. That is what the
          Lord has said. Just so, in regard to polygamy, or any other great
          principle which the Lord our God reveals to the inhabitants of
          the earth.
          Now, if you want to get into darkness, brethren and sisters,
          begin to oppose this revelation. Sisters, you begin to say before
          your husbands, or husbands you begin to say before your wives, "I
          do not believe in the principle of polygamy, and I intend to
          instruct my children against it." Oppose it in this way, and
          teach your children to do the same, and if you do not become as
          dark as midnight their is no truth in Mormonism. I am taking up
          too much time. I would like to dwell on another more pleasing
          part of this subject, if there were time. (President G. A.
          Smith--"There is plenty of time, brother Pratt.")
          I will go on and tell the people why polygamy was instituted in
          this dispensation. So far as a future state is concerned, God has
          revealed to us that marriage as instituted by him, is to benefit
          the people, not in this world only, but to all eternity. That is
          what the Lord has revealed. Do not misunderstand me; do not
          suppose that I mean, that marriage and giving in marriage are to
          be performed after the resurrection; I have not stated any such
          thing, and there will be no such thing after the resurrection.
          Marriage is an ordinance pertaining to this mortal life--to this
          world--this probation, just the same as baptism and the laying on
          of hands; it reaches forth into eternity, and has a bearing upon
          our future state; so does baptism; so does the ordinance of the
          laying on of hands; so does every ordinance which the Lord our
          God has revealed to us. If we attend to these things here in this
          life, they are secure something beyond this life--for eternity.
          They neither baptize, nor receive baptism, after the
          resurrection. Why? Because neither was intended to be
          administered after the resurrection. After the resurrection they
          neither marry nor are given in marriage. Why? Because this is the
          world where these ceremonies are to be attended to. That which is
          secured here, will be secured hereafter, if it be secured upon
          the principles of law which God has revealed. Marriage, then for
          eternity, is the great principle of marriage with the Latter-day
          Saints; and yet, I am sorry to say, that there are some of our
          young people who will suffer themselves to be married by the
          civil law; not for eternity, but just like the old Gentile
          custom--the way our forefathers were married. A justice of the
          peace, a judge, or some one having the right by the civil laws,
          will pronounce them husband and wife for a short space, called
          time; perhaps to last only about three score years, and then it
          is all over with the marriage contract; it is run out; they are
          husband and wife until death shall separate them, and then they
          are fully divorced. We do not believe in any such nonsense; it is
          one of the ideas of the Gentile world in regard to marriage.
          The first great marriage celebrated in this world of ours--that
          of our first parents--is a sample of marriage that should be
          introduced and practiced by and among all generations and
          nations, so far as the eternity of its duration is concerned. Our
          first parents were immortal beings; they knew nothing about
          death; it was a word that had never been spoken in their ears.
          The forbidden fruit had never been laid before them; no law in
          respect to that was yet given. But Eve was brought to our father
          Adam as an immortal woman, whose body could not die to all ages
          of eternity; she was given to an immortal husband, whose body
          could not die to all future periods of duration, unless they
          brought death upon themselves. Sin entered into the world, and
          death by sin; death is one of the consequences of sin; and they
          brought it upon themselves. But before that, they were
          married--the immortal Adam had the immortal Eve given to him.
          Now if it had been possible for them to have resisted that
          temptation, they would have been living now, just as fresh, and
          as full of vigor, life and animation, after six thousand years,
          as they were on the morning in which this ceremony of marriage
          took place; and if you should reflect upon millions and millions
          of ages in the future, they would still be considered husband and
          wife, while eternity should last. You could not set a time--you
          could not point your finger at a moment or hour, when they would
          be separated, and the union be dissolved.
          That is the kind of marriage that we Latter-day Saints believe
          in; and yet some of our young people, professing to be members of
          the Church and who say they wish to keep the commandments of God,
          go and get married by a justice of the peace, or some person
          authorized to perform that ceremony by the civil law. Ask parties
          who are guilty of such folly, why they were married by these
          officers of the law until death should part them? and they will
          say, "We did it inconsiderately, and without reflection," or
          perhaps they will say that their parents did not teach them on
          that point. Do you not know that such marriages are not sealed by
          him that is appointed by divine authority? that they are not of
          God and are illegal in his sight, and your children are
          illegitimate in the sight of God? If you expect to have any
          benefits in eternity arising from you children, they must be
          yours legally, according to divine appointment, under a divine
          marriage. "What God has joined together let not man put asunder."
          But what has God to do with it, when a magistrate, who, perhaps,
          is an infidel, and does not believe in a God at all, says to a
          man and woman, "Join your hands together," and then, when they
          have done so, he says, "I pronounce you husband and wife?" What
          has God to do with such a marriage as that? Has God joined them
          together? No, a civil magistrate has done it; and it is legal so
          far as the laws of the country are concerned, and the children
          are legal and heirs to their parents property so far as the civil
          law is concerned, but what has God to do with it? Has he joined
          them together? No, and the marriage is illegal, and, in the sight
          of heaven, the children springing from such a marriage are
          How are we going to legalize these matters? There are many who
          are very sorry for the Latter-day Saints; so sorry that they
          would favor the passing of a law which would legalize all the
          children who have been born in polygamy, and thus prevent them
          from being what they consider bastards. Now we are just as
          anxious, on the other hand, to get all our fathers and mothers,
          who have been married by these Gentile institution, joined
          together by divine authority, in order that they may become legal
          in the sight of God. We do not want their children to be
          bastardized; and hence, we get them adopted, or we shall do so
          when the Temple is built; I mean all those who have been born of
          parents that have never been joined together of the Lord or by
          his authority. All such children, as well as men and women,
          married only by the civil law, have got to have ordinances
          performed for them in the Temple. The men and women will have to
          be legally married there; and the children born before their
          parents were thus legally married, will have to pass through
          ordinances in order that they may become the legal sons and
          daughters of their parents; they will have to be adopted
          according to the law of God. You young men and women, who are
          married in a manner that the Lord does not authorize or own, put
          yourselves to a great deal of trouble, because you will have a
          great deal of work to do hereafter in temples in order to get
          things legalized. How much better it would be for you to come to
          those whom God has appointed, and have your marriages solemnized
          as immortal beings, who have to live to all eternity.
          It is true that we have all to die by and by, and we shall be
          separated for a little season; but this separation is a good deal
          like a man's leaving his family to go on a mission: he returns
          after a while to his wives and children, and he has not lost the
          one nor has he been divorced from the other, because they have
          been separated. And if death separates, for a little season,
          those who are married according to God's law, they expect to
          return to each other's embraces by virtue of their former union;
          for it is as eternal as God himself.
          "Do you mean to say," says one, "that people in the immortal
          state, will be united in the capacity of husbands and wives, with
          their children around them?" Yes, we do believe that all persons
          who have these blessings sealed upon them here, by the authority
          of the Most High, will find that they reach forward into the
          eternal world, and they can hold fast to that which God has
          placed upon them. "Whatsoever you seal on earth," said the Lord
          to the ancient Apostles, "shall be sealed in the heavens." What
          could be of more importance than the relationship of
          families--the solemn and scared relationship of marriage? Nothing
          that we can conceive of. It affects us here and it affects us
          hereafter in the eternal world; therefore, if we can have these
          blessings pronounced upon us by divine authority and we, when we
          wake up in the morning of the first resurrection, find that we
          are not under the necessity of either marrying or giving in
          marriage, having attended to our duty before hand, how happy we
          shall be to gather our wives and our children around us! How
          happy old Jacob will be, for instance, when in the resurrection,
          if he has not already been raised--a great many Saints were
          raised when Jesus arose and appeared to many--if Jacob did not
          rise then, and his four wives, and his children, how happy he
          will be, when he does come forth from the grave, to embrace his
          family, and to rejoice with them in a fulness of joy, knowing
          that, by virtue of that which was sealed upon him here in time,
          he will reign upon the earth! Will it not be a glorious thing,
          when that polygamist, by virtue of promises made to him here,
          comes forth to reign as king and priest over his seed upon the
          earth? I think that in those days polygamy will not be hated as
          it is now. I think that all things that have been prophesied by
          the ancient prophets will be fulfilled, and that Jacob will get
          his wives, by virtue of the covenant of marriage; and that he
          will have them here on the earth, and he will dwell with them
          here a thousand years, in spite of all the laws that may be
          passed to the contrary. And they will be immortal personages,
          full of glory and happiness. And Jesus will also be here on the
          earth, judging the twelve tribes of Israel; and during a whole
          thousand years, they will eat and drink at the table of the Lord,
          according to the promise that was made to them.
          Old Father Abraham will come up with his several wives, namely
          Sarah, Hagar and Keturah and some others mentioned in Genesis;
          and besides these all the holy prophets will be here on the
          earth. I do not think there will be any legislation against
          By and by they will build a polygamous city, and it will have
          twelve gates, and in order to place as much honor upon these
          gates as possible, they will name them after the twelve
          polygamist children that were born to the four polygamous wives
          of Jacob; and these good old polygamists will be assembled
          together in this beautiful city, the most beautiful that ever had
          place on the earth.
          By and by some Christian will come along, and he will look at
          these gates and admire their beauty, for each gate is to be
          constructed of one immense splendid pearl. The gates are closed
          fast and very high, and while admiring their beauty he observes
          the inscriptions upon them. Being a Christian he of course
          expects to enter, but looking at the gates, he finds the name of
          Reuben inscribed on one of them. Says he--"Reuben was a
          polygamous child; I will go on to the next, and see if there is
          the name of a monogamous child anywhere." He accordingly visits
          all the twelve gates, three on each side of the city, and finds
          inscribed on each gate the name of a polygamous child, and this
          because it is the greatest honor that could be conferred on their
          father Jacob, who is in their midst, for he is to sit down with
          all the honest and upright in heart who come from all nations to
          partake of the blessings of that kingdom.
          "But," says this Christian, "I really do not like this; I see
          this is a polygamous city. I wonder if there is not some other
          place for me! I do not like the company of polygamists. They were
          hated very badly back yonder. Congress hated them, the President
          hated them, the cabinet hated them, the Priests hated them, and
          everybody hated them, and I engendered the same hatred, and I
          have not got rid of it yet. I wonder if there is not some other
          place for me?' Oh yes, there is another place for you. Without
          the gates of the city there are dogs, sorcerers, whoremongers,
          adulterers and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie. Now take your
          choice, Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / George
          Q. Cannon, October 8, 1874
                          George Q. Cannon, October 8, 1874
                        DISCOURSE BY ELDER GEORGE Q. CANNON.
                   Delivered at the Semi-Annual Conference of the 
                    Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 
             in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, Thursday Afternoon,
                                  October 8, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                             IN UNION--THE UNITED ORDER.
          Six weeks ago yesterday I left this city to visit the settlements
          throughout the southern portion of our Territory. My trip has
          been one of the most interesting and pleasant I ever undertook,
          and I have rejoiced exceedingly in the opportunity which I have
          had of meeting with the people in that section of country. There
          is a great anxiety in many places and with many people to know
          what the condition of affairs is in that region. I can say that I
          never saw our people feeling better as a general thing, and more
          willing to do that which is required of them than at the present
          time. There was great anxiety among them to be instructed, and
          the meetings in every instance were crowded, the people turning
          out with great alacrity, and expressing regret that we could not
          stay longer. Brother Erastus Snow and brother Musser and myself
          attended most of the meetings. Part of the time in visiting the
          western settlements I was alone. The anxiety of the people seems
          to be to know what to do and to be instructed in the best manner
          of doing that which God requires at their hands; and this is the
          spirit which, as Latter-day Saints, we should entertain and
          cherish. God has called us to be a peculiar people; he has raised
          up Prophets, has organized his Church, has placed within it those
          callings and offices and gifts and qualifications and blessings
          which characterized the Church in ancient days, and he has
          condescended in his mercy and goodness to reveal himself unto the
          children of men, to teach them, counsel them and inspire them so
          that they may be instruments in his hands in building up his
          kingdom, and laying the foundation of that work of which the
          Prophets have spoken, and which we are told shall stand for ever.
          We as a people, with the views which we entertain, should not
          make up our minds to live in accordance with the methods of life,
          the modes of doing business, and the habits and the traditions of
          our forefathers, who have lived in ignorance of these principles
          and of this spirit of revelation--for we are required, in obeying
          this Gospel, to hold ourselves in a position to receive the word
          of God, to be counselled, to be directed, to be guided by that
          word in all our transactions, in the doctrines which we believe,
          in the habits of life which we adopt and in all our practices and
          labors. This is one of the first lessons which is impressed upon
          us in starting out in obedience to the Gospel of the Lord Jesus
          Christ. The very first teachings we received impressed upon our
          minds the necessity of forsaking these errors and false
          traditions which we have received from our fathers--errors in
          doctrine, false traditions concerning God, concerning his
          kingdom, concerning the plan of salvation which he has revealed;
          and if we have profited by that first lesson we have been
          continually progressing, learning new truths, new to us,
          acquiring knowledge concerning ourselves, concerning the work
          with which we are connected, concerning the earth and the
          inhabitants thereof, and we have been unlearning and forsaking
          the errors and the faults of our forefathers and of the world
          from which we have been gathered.
          The prayer which Jesus taught his disciples to ask the Father
          that his kingdom might come, and his will be done on earth as it
          is in heaven, will be fulfilled by means of this work with which
          we are identified. The foundation of that kingdom has already
          been laid. And the aim of every true Latter-day Saint, from the
          day that he or she joined this Church until to-day, has been to
          approximate to that life which we are told is led by those who
          are exalted through keeping the commandments of God--to do the
          will of God on earth as it is done in heaven; for as the Apostle
          John says--"Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not
          yet appear what we shall be; but we know that, when he shall
          appear, we shall be like him for we shall see him as he is. And
          every man that hath this hope within him purifieth himself even
          as he is pure." So with the Latter-day Saints, they have a hope
          of salvation within them, they desire to keep the commandments of
          God, and they have been seeking, from the beginning until to-day,
          to purity themselves, to live a heavenly life, and to reduce to
          practice in their daily walk and conversation, those precepts and
          laws, obedience to which would prepare them to dwell eternally
          with God in the heavens.
          There is a characteristic about the faith of the Latter-day
          Saints, in which they perhaps differ from most of the professed
          followers of Jesus Christ--they do not believe that God expects
          or desires them to put off acquiring these perfections, powers,
          gifts and graces which belong to the heavenly world until they
          reach that world; but they believe that God has placed them here
          in a state of probation, and that he has hid himself only to a
          certain extent from them; that he has drawn a veil of darkness
          between himself and his children on the earth for the purpose of
          trying their faith, of developing their knowledge and testing
          their integrity, so that those who will feel after him in faith,
          persevering in the midst of ignorance, darkness, doubt, confusion
          and the temptations of Satan, and all the evils with which we
          come in contact in this state of being may receive his blessings
          and the gifts, graces and favors which he bestows upon his most
          favored children. Hence, the Latter-day Saints believe in doing
          everything here that will help to prepare them for life eternal
          in his presence. They look upon this world as a place where they
          should attend to these things. By baptism? Yes. By having hands
          laid upon them? Yes. Have the gifts of the Holy Ghost? Certainly,
          have them here as well has hereafter; have them here to a partial
          extent to prepare them for the life that is to come. Have the
          voice of God here? Yes, why would we not know God's will here?
          Why should we be closed out entirely from all knowledge of God
          here, and yet believe that as soon as we die we are ushered into
          the fulness of his glory. Receive these blessings here? Yes,
          every blessing that is necessary. Be perfect here? Yes, it is
          man's privilege, the Latter-day Saints believe, to be as perfect
          in his sphere as God our eternal Father is in his sphere, or as
          Jesus in his sphere, or as the angels in their spheres. Said
          Jesus to his disciples--"Be ye perfect even as your Father in
          heaven is perfect." Perfection, then, is to a certain extent
          possible on earth for those who will live, lives that are
          agreeable to the mind and will of God.
          Now as fast as the Latter-day Saints can comprehend the life that
          God, his angels and those who are made perfect in his presence
          lead, they should be willing, and I believe that the most of them
          are willing, to copy after that life in this state as quickly as
          possible. "Well but," says one, "how useless it if for frail,
          fallible, mortal beings to attempt to live lives of perfections
          like the angels and those who are just and perfect in the
          presence of God!" I know that if we are to judge of men
          naturally, as we see them in the midst of their sins, breaking
          the commandments of God, trampling upon his holy ordinances,
          disregarding his requirements, we should say it is useless; and
          it is not only useless but it is impossible for men ever to reach
          that perfection of which we speak. But I am encouraged in my
          hopes that perfection, to a certain extent at least, is possible
          even in this mortal life, by witnessing the results in the midst
          of a people who are striving after it. I know that the efforts of
          this people in this direction, though not always crowned with the
          success that we have desired, yet there has been abundant cause
          for rejoicing and thanksgiving in the progress which we have
          made. We have attained unto a degree of union and love that
          approximates to some extent to that union and love which we
          believe exist in the eternal worlds. We have not yet reached,
          probably, that point when we can love our neighbor as we do
          ourselves; but still, if we strive for and keep that object in
          view, and endeavor to reach that perfection, undoubtedly we shall
          overcome or selfishness, and all those feelings which seem to be
          a part of fallen human nature, sufficiently to carry out that
          command of God.
          If we could get a glimpse of heaven, that heaven, to which we
          hope we are hastening, have you any idea that there would be any
          conflict of interests among the inhabitants of that blissful
          abode? Do you imagine that we should see one arrayed against
          another that there would be clashing and struggling, each one
          scrambling to get the advantage of his neighbor, and to acquire
          influence and power, and the blessings that belong to that abode
          more and greater than his neighbor? That is not the idea that we
          have formed of heaven; we have not entertained such views, but we
          imagine when we get there that God will be the possessor--he is
          the possessor--of all things that are comprehended within that
          sphere of existence, that the thrones, the principalities; powers
          and crowns, and even the very garments that the exalted wear
          belong to God, and that he will give them to us, that we shall
          possess them, subject, of course, to his law and to those
          regulations which he will enact, or which he has already enacted.
          I do not suppose there was a Christian that ever lived, I do not
          suppose there was a heathen that ever lived who expected that,
          when he got to the next world, to the place of bliss which he
          anticipated in his faith while here, he would live in anything
          like the condition he occupied here. Converse with the Christians
          about the next world, and they will all say that they do not
          expect to have anything; that they are redeemed by the precious
          blood of the Lamb, and that all the glory and honor of their
          salvation they ascribed unto God and the Lamb; that they will be
          content with anything he chooses to give them when they reach
          there, they would be content to be door-keepers or to occupy the
          lowest position if they could only permitted to dwell in the
          presence of God. And the heathen who believe in a future state of
          existence, and this belief is universal among them, (I believe it
          was Bancroft who said that atheism is the sin or crime of
          civilization, and not of heathendom or of natural men,) the
          heathen universally believe in a future state of existence, and
          they picture to themselves a condition such as I have described,
          and of course varying according to their faith and their views of
          this life, thinking that they will have circumstances similar in
          that life which is to come, with this difference only, that they
          will be more perfect and will be delivered from the evils to
          which they are subjected here as mortal beings.
          If then, my brethren and sisters, we are striving to live in
          accordance with that life to which we are hastening, we, by a
          little reflection, can see how much there is for us to do in
          order to prepare ourselves for the coming of the Lord Jesus
          Christ. One of the first teachings or revelations that was given
          to this church after its organization, was to the effect that we
          would dwell together as one family: that there should be an
          identity of interests among us; that we should approximate to
          some extent at least, and as far as practicable to that identity
          of interest which we understood, by the revelations of Jesus
          Christ, to exist in the eternal worlds. This revelations is one
          of the earliest given to this people, and its practice was
          entered upon in early days. We have been told by those who are
          old enough to know, and who had experience at that time, that to
          the disobedience or failure of the people in carrying out this
          revelation was due the expulsion of the Latter-day Saints from
          Jackson county in the State of Missouri; and that, afterward, the
          same causes operated to produce the results which the people
          experienced at that time, God suffering the enemies of his
          kingdom and people to have power over them because of their
          disobedience to respond to the call which he made upon, and to
          the commandments which he gave unto, them.
          This is one of the traditions that has come down to us of a
          younger generation, from the fathers of this Church. It has been
          taught to us and impressed upon us for years, probably upon many
          of since we knew anything of this work, until the belief is
          fastened upon the hearts, consciences and feelings of the great
          bulk of the Latter-day Saints, and that at some time or other, in
          the future of this Church that doctrine would be again taught,
          and the requirements embodied in that revelation would be again
          made upon us as a people; in fact the teachings I have received
          have been that until we did obey that the privilege of going back
          and building up the centre stake of Zion and redeeming that land
          which God first gave unto his people as an inheritance, in the
          State of Missouri, would not be granted unto us, and that until
          we did obey it we should be pilgrims and wanderers, and should
          not have the privilege of going back and laying the foundation of
          the centre stake of Zion and of that great Temple which God has
          said shall be reared in this Generation. So that for years,
          speaking of my own feelings, I have waited, I will not say with
          anxiety, but, with great desire, the time when this people would
          have sufficient faith, and when the circumstances should be so
          favorable that God should command us to enter upon the practice
          of that principle, or to enter into that order which he commanded
          us in the beginning to obey.
          Every time I have traveled among the nations of the earth, I have
          thanked God that he had provided a panacea for the evils which I
          saw everywhere. When I saw the rich revelling in luxury, crowding
          upon the poor, crushing out their lives, the poor living in
          squalor and misery, their lives a burden to them, not having, in
          many instances, enough food to eat, or raiment to wear, or a
          shelter, and when winter approached dreading it with feelings
          indescribable. In society in the world there is a large class of
          people having more means than they can spend for their comfort
          and convenience. They have the finest houses, abundance of food,
          every convenience, troops of servants to wait upon them to do
          their bidding, and have all the wealth they can desire, every
          luxury they can conceive of. At the same time there are living in
          the same community thousands of poor creatures destitute of the
          necessaries of life. My heart has been pained within me in
          visiting the large cities of Europe, at seeing women degraded
          like beasts of the field, and their lives continual burdens to
          them, their existence almost joyless. It has been a wonder to me
          how people could keep from committing suicide in the midst of the
          want that was everywhere apparent. I have thought, how can God
          bear with this people, and the cries of the poor ascending to him
          continually; and, as I have said, I have thanked God in my heart
          that he had provided a means of deliverance from such evils for
          his people.
          There is an expression used in the prophets, which I have often
          thought of, about the rich grinding the faces of the poor. It is
          a most forcible and significant metaphor. The tyranny and
          oppression that are practiced upon the poor are terrible. In many
          places their faces are literally ground by those who rule over
          them. Yet there are philanthropic men and women, rich people who
          do not take comfort in their riches because of the existence of
          this misery on every hand of which I have spoken, and they form
          benevolent societies of every name and nature in order to relieve
          the wants of the suffering poor, and yet with all their efforts
          the suffering is not lessened to any measurable extent. The
          people live and toil and die in the most squalid misery by
          thousands in all the large cities of thickly populated countries.
          I have also, in conversation at various times and under various
          circumstances, been told by those with whom I have conversed and
          who have taken some interest in the work with which we are
          identified, that so long as we were a primitive people and were
          simple in our habits, so long as we did not have a great deal of
          wealth in our midst we should probably continue to prosper and
          increase and bring forth and manifest in our lives the virtues
          which I described as having an existence among us. Men have told
          me--"O yes, Mr. Cannon, the picture you draw of the manner of
          life of your people is very delightful; it is delightful to find
          a people exhibiting such qualities as you describe as existing
          among, or possessed by, your people; but you are a new people, a
          new sect or denomination; but wait awhile, wait until you have
          grown in wealth, importance, numbers and power, and then we shall
          see whether your system possesses elements superior to the
          systems with which we are acquainted and which have preceded
          yours." Men who have reflected, who have read and made themselves
          acquainted with the histories of other peoples, know full well
          that when once wealth increases in the midst of a people, when
          class distinctions make their appearance, when education is
          promoted and aspired after by certain classes which other classes
          cannot reach; when refinement, the refinement of education and
          culture, has its effects, creating distinctions among a people
          who originally were primitive, and luxurious habits come in to
          foster these differences, then the strength of former communities
          has disappeared, and nations which have been noted as possessing
          the strength and the union of iron, have fallen into decay and
          have lost their power and have been broken into fragments and
          have eventually disappeared. Judging us by the light of this kind
          of experience many have made predictions which you have probably
          seen in the papers thousands of times, that there were causes
          operating in the midst of the Mormon community that would work
          out its disintegration and eventually bring about its utter
          overthrow and downfall, or at least bring about an assimilation
          between it and the systems by which I was surrounded.
          There is one thing, however, that is not taken into account in
          measuring us, and that is that God has laid the foundation of
          this work. Men do not recognize that, but they recognize other
          causes and other influences that are apparent to them and with
          which they are familiar. We have consoled ourselves, in listening
          to these predictions, with the reflection that we are the people
          of God, that God has made promises unto this people, that he has
          said that this work shall stand forever, and shall not be given
          into the hands of another people. These predictions, therefore,
          have not had any discouraging effect upon us. But, with all our
          confidence, we must not lose sight of the fact, that God works by
          means. If we are to withstand the encroachments of the evil one
          we must, on our part, do that which will fortify us against his
          encroachments, we must take steps to render us impregnable to his
          assaults. We are not the first people to engage in such a work as
          this. Others have made repeated attempts to establish the kingdom
          of God on the earth. One by one the prophets fell, one by one
          they became victims to the power of the evil one and to the
          assaults of the wicked. The Son of God himself fell as martyr to
          this fell spirit; his apostles one by one, although they
          endeavored in their day and generation to establish this order of
          Enoch to which I have referred, also fell martyrs to the same
          spirit of persecution, until the inhabitants of the earth had
          either slain or driven off every apostle, and not a man was left
          to stand up in the midst of the people to say--"thus saith the
          Lord," having the authority and power of the apostleship and of
          the holy priesthood from God to administer in the things of God
          and to communicate the mind and will of God unto the people.
          What followed? A reign of night, darkness and confusion covered
          the face of the whole earth. There was no heavenly voice to
          disturb the solemn stillness that ensued. Every man of God who
          aspired to revelation had been killed or swept from among men and
          then, and not till then was the vengeance of the adversary
          satiated; but as long as there was a holy man, who aspired to the
          distinction, or to the honor or blessing of knowing God's will so
          long there were those arrayed against him who scrupled not to
          shed his blood, and were not satisfied until that blood was
          You trace the various dispensations down from the days of Adam
          until the days of these apostles of which I have spoken, and see
          how short-lived were the attempts to establish a reign of
          righteousness. If we turn to the Book of Mormon, which gives an
          account of God's dealing on this land, we shall find that while
          the circumstances which surrounded the Jaredites and the Nephites
          were more favorable than those which surrounded the people of
          Asia, yet the same causes operated on this land, and after Jesus
          came and the wicked had been swept off by the judgments of God,
          and none were left but those who were righteous or partly so at
          least, that then they sought to establish this holy order among
          them and were successful, it continuing in their midst until the
          year two hundred and one after the birth of Jesus. And we are
          told that during that time all the generations that lived passed
          away in righteousness before the Lord. The circumstances were
          undoubtedly favorable for the establishment of an holy order
          among that people, because, as I have said, the judgments of God
          had visited the land, and the wicked had been swept off; but no
          sooner did they begin again to divide, each one seeking after his
          own affairs to the exclusion of the general affairs of the people
          than they began again to fall into sin and transgression, and the
          result was that they were punished of God, and the Nephites were
          eventually blotted out; but we are informed that one hundred and
          sixty-seven years, terminating in the yea 201 of the Christian
          era, were passed in perfect peace and righteousness. It was
          almost millennial righteousness. Satan was bound almost as much
          during that one hundred and sixty-seven years in his operations
          among the Nephites, if we may judge by the short record which has
          come to us, as if he did not have an existence, or as he will be
          during the thousand years' reign of peace, that is so far as
          leading away the hearts of the people to commit sin is concerned.
          I have alluded to these various attempts on the part of holy men
          to establish truth and righteousness on the earth. We have seen
          that they have only been partially successful; they did not
          succeed in overcoming sufficiently to entirely bind Satan and to
          banish from the earth the evils of which he is the cause; but we
          are told that in the last days God will establish his kingdom
          Brother Penrose described, this morning, in the close of his
          remarks, some of the results which should follow. He said that
          the lamb and the wolf should lie down together, and the bear and
          the cow should feed together, and there should be nothing to hurt
          or destroy in all the mountain of the Lord, but that peace and
          union and love should prevail throughout the earth for one
          thousand years. The Prophets have spoken of this time, those to
          whom I have referred, who fell victims to the rage of their
          persecutors; they looked forward to the time when this kingdom
          should be established and should be successful, and they dwelt
          upon it with great delight and anticipation. The Apostles John,
          the Revelator, speaks about a thousand years of peace and
          righteousness, when Satan should be bound and should not have
          power over the hearts of the children of men to tempt them, or to
          lead them astray, and that this should last for one thousand
          years, and then at the close of that period he should be loosed
          again for a little season.
          The revelations which we have received through the Prophet Joseph
          Smith speak of the same period, that is, anticipate such a time
          as this that the Apostle John speaks of; and we have been taught
          from the beginning until the present time that this work, this
          system, this gospel, called Mormonism, should be the beginning of
          this work, and that it should spread and increase until it should
          fill the whole earth, and bring to pass the fulfillment of these
          predictions. Now what I wish to impress upon your minds, in
          bringing them to this point is this, that if we are engaged in a
          work that is to be more successful than any other work that has
          been established by God our Heavenly Father from the beginning
          until now there must be greater faith and union, there must be
          more power, there must be a willingness to sacrifice more than
          has ever been manifested by any people who have preceded us in
          works of this character, or in any dispensation which God has
          given unto men. I know that many think that God will do a great
          deal. I believe that I am a believer in God's power to the
          fullest extend, but I have noticed in my experience that God
          works by means, and that he does not himself come down in person,
          neither does he send his angels down, except on visits
          occasionally; but he commands his people, his children on the
          earth to do that which he requires at their hands, and then helps
          them in doing this, and my conclusion is that if we lay the
          foundation of a work that shall stand forever, that shall never
          be overthrown or given into the hands of another people, we must
          have the more faith, practice a higher righteousness, be more
          valiant for the truth and possess more of God's power than any
          people who have ever preceded us. Are we prepared for this? Did
          the Latter-day Saints take this into their calculation when they
          joined this church? If they did, it is well, if they did not,
          they had better begin to investigate the matter and satisfy
          themselves as to what their duties are. It may be said, as I have
          already stated, that God will assist us. Undoubtedly he will; he
          assisted his servants in ancient days. But we have a foe to
          contend with who is sleepless. The adversary of our souls has not
          lost his cunning. He knows that his time is short and that the
          last struggle is approaching, and he will not relax in the least
          degree his vigilance or his diligence in seeking to destroy this
          work and to martyr or destroy the men and women connected with
          it. The supremacy of the earth depends upon the issue of the
          contest. He has held the sway, he has been dominant, he has been
          successful in destroying the holiest and the best that ever trod
          the earth's surface. The Son of God himself and the pure and holy
          in all ages he has succeeded in destroying, and in spreading his
          pall of darkness over the earth, and in destroying faith from the
          midst of the children of men, and now that the attempt is made to
          revive the work of God and to establish his kingdom on the earth
          we may make calculations with all certainty that he will not
          cease his endeavors until either he, or God and his kingdom are
          triumphant. He wants to vanquish and he will vanquish if
          possible, and he will spare no means to destroy this work, for if
          it is established the foundation of his kingdom is sapped.
          There are principles taught unto us now which will fortify us
          more effectually than anything that has ever been taught to us
          before, so far as resisting this pressure that is brought to bear
          upon us to destroy us. I refer to this Order to which I have
          alluded before--the Order of God, the order that is called after
          Enoch because, as we are told in the revelations, he established
          it among his people, and brought about that perfection which
          enabled him and his city to be translated. I know there are many
          feelings among the people in relation to this. I have heard more
          since I returned to Salt Lake City, in the few days I have been
          here concerning the feelings of men who call themselves
          Latter-day Saints, than I imagined existed among us. In the south
          the people have organized, and they have gone along very well
          during this last season. Bishop Callister remarked to me, when I
          was at Fillmore passing south, that he doubted whether Enoch
          himself and his people made more or better progress than they had
          made in the same time. I doubted it also, and subsequent
          observation confirmed the truth of this remark. So far as other
          settlements are concerned I found the people in some instances
          discouraged a little, but on the whole they were greatly
          encouraged by the results of the seasons labor, and they felt to
          organize themselves more perfectly according to the new articles
          of association, and to carry out the requirements which had been
          made upon them. I was delighted in visiting a little town on the
          banks of the Rio Virgen, called Price. There the superintendent
          of the farming, Brother Baker, remarked, "I wish you had come
          about an hour earlier, you would have seen us all here together
          at our meal." Said I--"What do you mean?" He said they had just
          got through dinner. Said I--"Do you eat together?" "O yes," said
          he, "we have been living as one family all this season." I was
          surprised for I had not heard of it, and I was so much interested
          in it that I commenced to make enquiries as to their condition. I
          found that there were from forty to forty-four men, women and
          children who had joined together in accordance with the counsel
          given by President Young while in the South. They had proceeded
          to farm together, and to live together as one family. I thought
          that the best persons that I could refer to, to obtain
          information as to the real workings of the affair would be the
          sisters, so I proceeded to interrogate them. The leading sister
          told me that sometimes it was rather hard work. I did not wonder
          at it when I saw the kitchen. They had three small cooking
          stoves, and they were quite inconveniently situated. But she
          added--"We have felt excellently and feel greatly encouraged."
          Said I--"Are the people satisfied? don't you sometimes have fault
          finding with your cooking, or your meals, or something of this
          kind?" No, she said, there had been no fault found. "How do the
          sisters feel, are they tired of it?" No, she said, they were not,
          they felt greatly encouraged, and they divided the labor so that
          it was not very heavy upon any of them, not too heavy. "How do
          you arrange about your washing?" They told me, that in the
          beginning they put their washing all together, but they had no
          machinery, and they found that it was no advantage, as it was too
          heavy even for the strong women, and they concluded that it was
          better to divide their washing, and for each family to do its
          own. I spoke to the Superintendent--"How do you manage with your
          men? Are the brethren willing, when you require them to do
          anything, do they go with alacrity, or do you have difficulty in
          controlling them?" "Not in the least," said he, "I have never
          made a requirement or asked a man to do a thing that he has
          refused to do, and in our farming they have worked well and
          patiently together, and they are satisfied with the arrangement."
          I spoke to others who worked there and made inquiries of them,
          and I found, in every instance, that there was a good deal of
          satisfaction in the arrangement, and they hoped, if they could
          get up a suitable building and have suitable convenience for
          their cooking, that a great deal of this labor would be lightened
          and they would get along much better even than they had done.
          Brother Samuel Miles is one of the company, a man whom many of
          this congregation know, and who has been a long time in the
          Church. I talked with him, being an old acquaintance, and he told
          me that, from his observation during the entire season, he deemed
          that what was originally an experiment was an entire success, and
          he felt very much gratified with the result. After rising in the
          morning they meet in one room together and have prayers; then
          they sit down to breakfast, and while at breakfast the
          Superintendent converses with the men as to the arrangement of
          labor of the day. After breakfast they go to their work, one to
          one department, another to another. At noon they again assemble,
          for dinner, eat their dinner after having asked a blessing upon
          it, and then spend a little leisure--until one o'clock or the
          hour expires--and then resume their labors. They come together
          again in the evening, when they have supper and attend to
          prayers, and spend the remainder of the evening in social
          conversation or in conversation on business or in arranging their
          affairs, as the case may be.
          I afterwards visited a little settlement of the name of Hebron,
          where there are about thirty families. The Bishop, George H.
          Crosby, said they had brick and lumber on hand to build several
          residence, but they hesitated about building as they had some
          thought of carrying out the suggestions which President Young
          made to the people, or to some of them, to enter into a family
          arrangement, and they thought that, probably it would be well to
          use their material and build a suitable building. It was
          afterwards suggested that they build a dining-room and a
          commodious kitchen, etc., and that they live in their own
          residences during this coming summer and try the effect of eating
          together. This they may do. They had found that it would be far
          more convenient for them, in their labor, to be together during
          the summer season at least and, the weather being fine, they
          could walk from their houses to the dining room and eat their
          meals, and then the men go to their labor and the women and
          children separate again. In that settlement they have labored
          during this past season in the United Order, and they told me
          they had raised double the amount of crops they ever raised
          before; and all their labors are proportionately advanced, and
          this is the testimony of a good many settlements. There are some
          complaints as a matter of course. I heard some about tools being
          misused, about wagons not being greased, about animals not being
          fed, harness not being cared for; but these results are due to a
          great extent to want of system.
          Another objection that we found and that has resulted badly in
          some instances, is that men have put in a portion of their
          property only and kept out a portion; of course, the portion that
          is kept out absorbs nearly all their attention, while that which
          is put into the Order does not receive that share of attention
          which it should have, and when they were called upon to labor
          they had other interests which called them off, and they excused
          themselves or sent their boys to attend to it. In some wards and
          settlements they have been crippled in consequence of this. But
          recent instructions which have been given by the First
          Presidency, that no one should be admitted into the Order, unless
          he enters with all he has, (except in the case of debt, then the
          board of directors to exercise their discretion about that,) will
          have a good effect throughout the entire South. It will
          concentrate the labors of the people in one direction, and where
          a man's treasure is there will his heart be also; and if all a
          man's property is in the United Order if he be a Latter-day
          Saints, he will labor with fidelity for the furtherance of the
          objects which the Order has in view.
          There is one thing which has been demonstrated by this season's
          labor, namely, that better results can be produced by a
          combination of labor, as proposed by the United Order, than by
          individual effort to the same extent. I was much gratified at
          finding that this was the universal testimony of all with whom I
          conversed on the subject.
          While at St. George, after holding two days' meeting, brother
          Snow and myself held meetings with the Bishops, superintendents,
          foremen and leading me in the various settlements throughout that
          Stake. We requested them to give us a full and free expression of
          their feelings concerning the season's labors, to tell us all the
          causes of discouragement if there were any, and also the causes
          of encouragement, and those that I have already alluded to were
          the principle ones given. There have been in some instances
          indolence, carelessness and indisposition to work, and an
          inclination manifested to throw the labor upon those who are
          industrious and energetic. It might be expected that such would
          be the result, it could scarcely be otherwise. I was reminded
          very much, in hearing the statement of the brethren, of what the
          Prophet Joseph said when alive about the indolence, carelessness
          and indifference to work manifested by some men. He said there
          were three kinds of poor--the Lord's poor, the devil's poor, and
          the poor devils. I thought that this Order was bringing to the
          surface the poor devils, and I should not be surprised if it
          would have this effect; in fact, if a man who is not inspired
          with right feelings should get connected with the Order, there is
          no doubt that he would shirk work and be careless and indifferent
          whenever he could be. We know that there are many eye-servants
          among us--men who work only when they are watched; and so far as
          the use of tools is concerned, any man who has employed other
          men, and has not been in a position to look after them and watch
          what they are doing, knows how men work, even as we are situated
          at the present time. He knows how his tools are misused and
          mislaid, and his harness and his wagons and his teams are used or
          abused, and that it requires much care on his part, or on the
          part of somebody equally trusty to preserve his property. He has
          to frequently buy new tools--new spades, hoes, forks, ploughs,
          and if he has a mower and entrusts it to other hands than his
          own, in many instances he gets it broken. This is not always the
          case; but it is too much the case, and we have these things to
          contend with now, and in my opinion judging by my observation, as
          far as it has extended, they are no worse in the United Order;
          and there is this about this Gospel--it brings every imperfection
          to the light that a man has within him. When this Gospel has been
          preached for the first time in neighborhoods, I have heard
          hundreds say to me, at different times--"Oh, I am so glad that I
          have got this truth, there is Mr. So and so," or "there is my
          aunt" or "my uncle" or "such a relative," "there is my minister,
          if I go to him and tell him what I have received he will embrace
          it gladly and be a Latter-day Saint," and they go and tell what
          they have received. Probably hundreds of you who are here to-day,
          have gone filled with zeal--"Why, I have got the truth, I want
          you to hear the truth," and what has been the result? The devil
          has manifested himself immediately and they have found that their
          relatives had a spirit which they never dreamed of, and they have
          proved their ministers to be anything but willing to receive the
          truth. This Gospel has that effect, it brings men and women's
          imperfections to light, it shows the imperfections of their
          characters; it tests people and tears the covering from hypocrisy
          and false pretensions as nothing else can. The United Order being
          one of its principles will, I expect, have this effect; but would
          it not be better for our faults and imperfections to be brought
          to light in this life than to wait until the next and have them
          brought to the surface then?
          The people feel very well so far as I have had opportunity to
          observe. We have explained the articles of association to them;
          they have been gratified at the explanations which have been
          made. Many have reasoned upon it like this--"if I put all I have
          got into the United Order, and I begin to draw days' wages only
          out of the Order, I have got a large family, how can I sustain
          them upon my day's wages? It takes the product of my property
          managed with care and economy, in addition to my own labor, to
          enable me to live, and if I put all my property into this Order,
          how am I to live?" This has been the inquiry more frequently made
          than another. It is not the intention, in establishing the United
          Order, to destroy the productiveness of property; it is not the
          intention to take property from men who have it and give it to
          those who have none. There are two extremes to be avoided, one is
          the disposition of the rich to aggrandize themselves at the
          expense of the poor. That is what we are trying, in this United
          Order, to put a stop to, so that we may prevent the growth of
          class distinctions, the increase of wealth in a certain class,
          and that class have interests diverse from and frequently adverse
          to the rest of the community. That is one extreme. The other is
          this idea to which I have referred, the anxiety of poor people to
          get possession of the accumulations of the rich, and to have them
          divided among them, and a general levelling take place. There is
          no such idea connected with this order, such a thing could not
          stand very long; and let me say to you who find fault with this
          United Order, ask yourselves when you ever saw anything connected
          with this Church or its doctrines that was unnatural, that was
          not consistent with good common sense? Do you think that we can
          teach and practice anything that will repress people, that will
          destroy individual effort, that will take away from enterprise
          its incentive? No, there is nothing connected with this system of
          this character, and it is upon this point that men and women are
          so much deluded by the false and slanderous reports which are
          circulated. There never was a day since our organization as a
          people, according to my ideas and my reading of our early history
          and my subsequent experience, when there were so many falsehoods
          in circulation about any principle as there have been about this
          United Order. There is far to much ignorance among us, and men
          take advantage of this to deceive the people by their falsehoods.
          It is the intention to preserve that which we have. If a man is a
          man of business let him have a chance to show his business
          capacity, not stop him, not take his property from him and give
          it to somebody who never had anything. The intention is to use
          the skill of the business man in elevating those who are not
          business men, to bring up the poor from their level to the broad
          upper level, not to pull down the upper level to the plane of the
          lower. That is not the design, but it is that we shall work for
          each other's good; and where men have property let them take
          means to preserve it, not to destroy it. It is not the intention
          for boards of directors to use arbitrary power over men and
          There are many cases where if a man were to put all that he has
          into the Order, it would be found that he already manages that
          property better than the board of directors could. Under such
          circumstances it would be better to say: "here, you have managed
          this property economically, you have done well with it, we could
          not do so well with it if we took it. There is no object to be
          gained by our taking it from you; you continue to use and manage
          it as a stewardship, and keep up its productiveness." This will
          have to be done doubtless in many instances.
          But as to our farming interests, we can farm together far better
          than separately. Instead of having so many mowers and reapers,
          and so many tools, teams and wagons as we have now, we can
          concentrate our labors and have better results from the use of a
          given quantity of capital and labor than under our present
          system; and I do hope that the Bishops in this city will take
          hold of this matter as they should do. Will they do it? or will
          they stand in the way of the people? I firmly believe that many
          of our leading men are standing to-day in the way of the people
          in relation to the organization of this United Order; but if they
          were to do as they should do, as God requires them, they would
          take hold of this principle in the spirit of it.
          "Well, but," says one, "suppose I lose my property?" Suppose you
          do, it is not intended that you should lose it, but suppose you
          do? If my property goes, what odds is it? God gave it to me, and
          if I lose it in obeying his commandments, who cares? I do not.
          When I got old enough to understand this Gospel I saw that it
          might take everything men had, and even their lives, to maintain
          it in the earth, and if a man is not willing to lay down his life
          for this Gospel, he is not worthy of it; if he should not be
          willing to risk his property in carrying out a great principle,
          of what value are his professions of faith? And when God calls
          upon us, we who have been saying all the day that our property
          was upon the altar, and proposes a plan to save and exalt us and
          give us strength, we begin to mourn about our property, and to
          tell what failures there have been in the management of property,
          about co-operation being a failure, and thus justify ourselves
          for refusing to do what God requires! And yet call ourselves
          Latter-day Saints! Out upon men and women calling themselves
          Saints of God and making the professions which they do, and
          striving for the exaltation which they profess to be aiming for,
          who would make such expressions. Suppose that in doing that which
          God requires, all of our property should be taken, which we may
          rest assured will not be the case? If God were to permit a mob to
          come upon us, they could sweep away the whole of our property. If
          a mob were to come upon us and drive us, how much would any of us
          be worth? And can not God let our enemies have the power to
          scourge us? I think he can; and unless there is a different
          spirit manifested by leading men, by Bishops and by men who ought
          to have the Spirit and power of God resting upon them, and by the
          people themselves in many instances anger may be aroused against
          us. I believe that to-day President Young is prostrated under a
          load that, if we were obedient he would be relieved from. I
          believe he would have been sound and well able, to-day, to teach
          us from this stand if we had done as we should have done. He is
          wearied by his labors in teaching and laboring in our midst,
          calling upon us early and late, entreating us to listen to the
          counsel of God.
          I have said, and I repeat it, that if we do not know that this
          United Order is true of ourselves by the revelations of God, we
          should be willing to obey it just because President Young teaches
          it, a man who has taught us and led us for so many years, so
          faithfully and so successfully, God having blessed him as he has
          done in so signal a manner all the time. If this people would
          take hold of the principle in that spirit they would soon know
          that it was of God; the testimony of Jesus would rest upon them,
          and they would know it for themselves; and then, when they get
          that spirit, they would not care about property, if it took it
          all, they would say, "all right."
          When you made up your minds to obey this Gospel, did you hesitate
          because your friends told you that if you became Mormons you
          would spoil your prospects and lose your friends? No; you
          sacrificed every worldly consideration, you risked all for the
          truth, for the salvation which God promised you. And so in this
          United Order if you have a testimony that it is of God, you will
          feel--"No, matter what it costs, all right." Failures, yes there
          may be failures. I expect there will be failures and mistakes as
          long as we are so full of frailty, but who cares for that? But
          this will not be the fault of the principle. If God commands us
          to do anything, let us do it with all our heart, and he will
          prepare the way and preserve us from the bad effects of failures;
          he always controlled results for our good, and he will do it
          again. Why there are some men who would say that the mission of
          Jesus was a failure, (was he not killed by the Jews?) and the
          plan of salvation is a failure, and that creation is a failure,
          and they may just as well say these things as to say that
          cooperation is a failure, and that many other things are
          failures. Some say that God failed in putting Adam and Eve in the
          garden and allowing the serpent to tempt them and cause them to
          fall, and the whole scheme was a failure. Why not as well say
          that as to say that other things are failures? There are some
          people who can only judge of merit by success. If successful, no
          matter what it may be, it is meritorious. It may have its origin
          in hell, and success is, in their estimation, a test of merit.
          The best of schemes and plans have failed frequently in this
          sense, and yet have been true and perfect.
          I know that God requires this union at our hands, and by the help
          of God I am determined, with all the influence and power that he
          has given me or that he may give me, to use my endeavors with the
          people to organize in a manner to resist every encroachment made
          against them. All hell is arrayed against us, and the powers
          thereof are bound to destroy this work if they can, and it is our
          duty, as Latter-day Saints, to band ourselves together in the
          power of God. We shall be able to do it if we do right, and the
          wicked will not gain a single advantage over us. That is just as
          true as that God lives, and I know it. I know that this United
          Order is of God, for God has revealed it to me; the revelations
          of Jesus Christ have imparted this knowledge to me, and I know it
          for myself. I know by the gift of the Holy Ghost that it is our
          duty as a people, and as individuals, to enter into this United
          Order and carry it out in the spirit that God has revealed it in.
          Listen to this testimony, and the men and women who have the love
          of the truth within them have, or will have the testimony of
          Jesus that these words are true and faithful.
          And I desire to say further--there has got to be a spirit of
          repentance sought for by many of those who are now called
          Latter-day Saints, or they will lose the spirit of God and their
          standing among this people. Will God prosper us in this United
          Order? Yes, and we cannot be a rich people, we cannot be the
          people which God designs us to be, until we live after that
          pattern. There are hundreds of men who are praying constantly to
          God to deliver them from apostacy and there are others who pray
          that God will deliver them from being rich, because, they
          perceive that, frequently, when men get rich, they are not easily
          handled, they become intractable, they lose, in some instances,
          the Spirit of God; and therefore, they pray that God will deliver
          them from being rich, that they may not be lifted up in pride.
          Yet we know that the revelations and prophecies say that God will
          make us a rich people.
          Speaking about the Zion of the last days, Isaiah says that the
          Lord will bring for brass gold, for iron silver, for wood brass,
          and for stones iron to build up the Zion of God. When will that
          be done? When we are united, so that we shall not consume the
          wealth that God will give us upon our lusts, upon creating class
          distinctions, raising one class above another, one class living
          in luxury and another class grovelling in poverty; but when we
          are so organized that there will be no rich and no poor, but all
          partaking alike of the bounties that God shall give unto us,
          then, and in my opinion, not till then, can he bestow upon us the
          wealth that he has promised. It would ruin us to-day if we had
          it, and God, as I view his providence, withholds these blessings
          from us because of the effects they would have upon us as a
          people. He does not wish to destroy us. But when we are organized
          aright, then what? Why, then will be fulfilled after a while
          another saying of Isaiah's,--"And strangers shall stand and feed
          your flocks, and the sons of the alien shall be your ploughmen
          and your vinedressers; but ye shall be named the Priests of the
          Lord; men shall call you the ministers of our God."
          All these problems of capital and labor can be solved by this
          principle and in no other way, and there will be an incessant and
          never-ending conflict between capital and labor until they are
          solved in this manner.
          That God may pour out his holy spirit upon you, my brethren and
          sisters, and fill you therewith, to enable you to do his will
          perfectly, is my prayer in the name of Jesus, Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 /
          Wilford Woodruff, October 9, 1874
                          Wilford Woodruff, October 9, 1874
                         REMARKS BY ELDER WILFORD WOODRUFF,
           Delivered at the Semi-Annual Conference of the Church of Jesus
                                      Christ of
          Latter-Day Saints, in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, Friday
                                  October 9, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          We, as a people, have had a great deal of teaching and counsel in
          our day and generation. Some of us have been taught in the things
          of this kingdom for over forty years, and, by this time, we ought
          to exercise faith in the promises of God. We have looked forward
          to the fulfillment of the revelations which have been given in
          all ages and dispensations which are past and gone; and we have
          not only expected their fulfillment, but we have helped to
          fulfill a great many of them in the course of our lives. This
          work is the work of God, it is not the work of man. The Lord has
          set his hand in these last days in fulfillment of revelation and
          prophecy and the promises which have been made for thousands of
          years past and gone, concerning the earth and the dispensations
          I will here say that all inspired men, from the days of father
          Adam to the days of Jesus, had a view, more or less, of the great
          and last dispensation of the fulness of times, when the Lord
          would set his hand to prepare the earth and a people for the
          coming of the Son of Man and a reign of righteousness. One of the
          brethren was speaking here about the views entertained by some in
          the world who regard Christianity and the work of God as a
          failure. I will say that the work of the Lord has never been a
          failure and it never will. His purposes have to be accomplished
          in the earth. There is one thing true with regard to the history
          and travels of the Saints of God in every age of the world--they
          have had to pass through trials, tribulations and persecutions,
          and have had to contend with opposition, and this will always be
          their fate until the power of evil is overcome. This is one of
          the legacies that is designed from God to the Saints while
          dwelling in the flesh among a world of devils, for the world is
          full of them, there are millions and millions--all that were cast
          out of heaven; they never die, and they never leave the earth,
          but they dwell here and will continue to do so until Satan is
          bound. As a people we have to meet this warfare, and the Saints
          of God have had to contend with it in every age of the world. Any
          man who undertakes to serve God has to round up his shoulders and
          meet it, and any man who will not trust in God and abide in his
          cause even unto death is not worthy of a place in the celestial
          kingdom. Said Jesus--"I have chosen you out of the world,
          therefore the world hate you; if you were of the world the world
          would love its own. They have hated me, they will hate you; and
          if they persecute me they will persecute you." This is the legacy
          which all Saints may depend upon receiving. True, there has been
          a difference in the various dispensations. This is the only
          dispensation that God has ever established that was foreordained,
          before the world was made, not to be overcome by wicked men and
          devils. All other dispensations have been made war upon by the
          inhabitants of the earth, and the servants and Saints of God have
          been martyred. This was the case with Jesus and the Apostles in
          their day. The Lord have that good old Prophet Enoch, President
          of the Zion of God, who stood in the midst of his people three
          hundred and sixty five years, a view of the earth in its various
          dispensations, showing him that the time would come when it would
          groan under the wickedness, blasphemy, murders, whoredoms and
          abominations of its inhabitants. The Prophet asked the Lord
          whether there would ever be a time when the earth should rest;
          and the Lord answered that in the dispensation of the fulness of
          times the earth would fill the measure of its days, and then it
          would rest from wickedness and abominations, for in that day he
          would establish his kingdom upon it, to be thrown down no more
          for ever. Then a reign of righteousness would commence and the
          honest and meek of the earth would be gathered together to serve
          the Lord, and upon them would rest power to build up the great
          Zion of God in the latter days. These things were also shown to
          Abraham, and many others of the ancient servants of God had
          glimpses of them by vision, revelation and the inspiration of the
          Spirit of God, and what they saw, or an account of what they saw,
          has been left on record.
          This dispensation is one that all the Patriarchs and Prophets had
          their eye upon, and the Lord has commenced it, and has carried it
          on now for more than forty years, since this Church was organized
          with six members. We have not altogether traveled on beds of
          ease, we have had warfare and opposition from the commencement
          until this day; but we and the world may set our hearts at rest
          concerning "Mormonism," for it will never cease until the Lord
          Jesus Christ comes in the clouds of heaven. This nations and
          other nations will war with the Saints of God until their cup is
          full; and when they become ripened in iniquity the Lord Almighty
          will cut them off, and the judgments of the Most High God will
          follow the testimony of the Elders of Israel.
          This is the way I look upon it. We are called upon to do our duty
          with regard to the subject which has been spoken of by brothers
          Van Cott and Cannon. What is this world I would like to know?
          What are the things of this world? What are houses and lands,
          goods and chattels, and the treasures of the earth generally, to
          us? What are they to any Saints of God compared with eternal
          life? We should certainly be as well off to unite ourselves and
          our interests together in the things of God as to be separate.
          There have been too much selfishness and division and every man
          for himself amongst us, and the devil for us all. Eternal life is
          worth more to a Saint of God than all things else put together,
          in fact it is the greatest gift God ever gave to man, or that he
          can give to him, and whatever the Lord requires at our hands we
          should be ready to do, individually and collectively.
          As I have often remarked in my testimony, from my youth up I had
          a desire to live to see a people rise up in the earth and contend
          for the faith once delivered to the Saints, who would receive and
          teach the Gospel of Jesus Christ as it was taught in his day and
          generation. When I heard this Gospel I embraced it. The first
          sermon I ever heard the Spirit of God bore record to me that it
          was true, and I went forth and was baptized for the remission of
          my sins. I received the laying on of hands and the Lord gave me
          the Holy Ghost and a testimony, just the same as he gave to you,
          and to hundreds of thousands of those who have obeyed the Gospel.
          It was but a short time after embracing the work that I was
          called to go with my brethren a thousand miles for the redemption
          of Zion. I went willingly, for I knew it was the work of God, it
          was what I had sought for from the time I was eight years old,
          what I had been taught in the Presbyterian Sunday School and what
          I had read in the New Testament in my father's house. From that
          time up I had looked for these things, and I had a testimony that
          I should live to see them, and I did, and when I embraced this
          Gospel my heart was filled with joy and consolation; and as for
          this world, if I had the whole of it, I felt in those days as I
          feel now, it would not stand in my path in seeking for eternal
          I was called to take my life in my hands and go up to Missouri,
          and a little handful of us went up to redeem our brethren. We
          certainly had to go by faith. My neighbors called upon and plead
          with me not to go; said they--"Do not go, if you do you will lose
          your life." I said to them--"If I knew that I should have a ball
          put through my heart the first step I took in the State of
          Missouri I would go." I went, and I did not get shot, neither did
          any of the rest of us, but we fulfilled the commandment of God.
          That is the way I felt in those days with regard to the work of
          God, and that is the way I feel to-day. I am after salvation and
          eternal life, and I do not want anything to stand between me and
          that which I am in pursuit of. It does not make any difference
          what we as a people may be called to pass through. Men can go no
          further than they are permitted by the Lord. I have often
          remarked, and I repeat it, your destiny, the destiny of this
          nation, and the destiny of every king, prince, president,
          statesman and ruler under heaven are in the hands of the God of
          Israel. He made the world and all its inhabitants, and they can
          go no further than they are permitted. If we unite ourselves
          according to the law of God we shall have far more safety than if
          we turn away from the commandments of the Lord and set our hearts
          upon the things of this world. If we forget God we are liable to
          be scourged; that it my feeling this morning.
          This is the work of God. The Lord has set his hand to build up
          his kingdom, and he will do it whatever the consequences may be.
          Whatever the persecutions or difficulties his Saints may be
          called to pass through, the Lord will never withdraw his hand,
          for he decreed, before the foundation of the world, that in the
          dispensation of the fulness of times his kingdom should be set up
          upon the earth, never more to be thrown down.
          The world has had its dispensations: we are at the end of the
          sixth thousand years, and are bordering upon the coming of the
          Son of Man in the clouds of heaven, with power and great glory,
          to reward every man according to the deeds done in the body; and
          whatever the feeling of the world may be the Lord has decreed a
          woe upon that man, that house, that nation or that people that
          rejects the testimony of his servants. The Lord says that he will
          hold a controversy with the nations, and judge the world with
          fire and sword, and he will plead with all flesh, and the slain
          of the Lord will be many. What if some of us do have to sacrifice
          our lives for the word of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ?
          What of it? What is a man's life? The whole world will die.
          Armies, containing thousands of men, go forth for the honor of
          being killed, in order to defend a king or a government. Is it
          any worse to die for the word of God and the testimony of Jesus
          Christ than to die serving the devil? Not a particle. I glory in
          my feelings at the valiant spirit that is and has been manifested
          by the servants of the living God in the cause of truth and in
          defence of the great latter-day work. The Lord never raised up a
          better set of men and women since the world was than are they who
          have embraced the Gospel of Jesus Christ in these latter days.
          They have the testimony of Jesus Christ with them, and they have
          been called to pass through many trials thus far in the history
          and progress of the work of God. It is true and many have broken
          their covenants and turned away from the Lord, and the reason is
          that they stopped serving God and undertook to serve themselves,
          and that led them into darkness. They rejected the things of the
          kingdom of Heaven, and the spirit of God was taken from them, and
          that class of people, in every age of the world is the darkest of
          any who ever breathe the breath of life. They lose all confidence
          in every principle of salvation and eternal life revealed to man.
          With regard to our present position I want to say that it is the
          duty of every Saint of God in these valleys of the mountains to
          let his prayers ascend into the ears of the Lord of Sabbath, day
          and night in the season thereof, in the family circle and in
          private places, for the Lord to sustain his people, build up Zion
          and fulfill his promises. We are in duty bound to fulfill ours,
          and the Lord will not fail now any more than he has any other
          time. He did not fail in the days of Jesus Christ, not a bit of
          it. Jesus was poor, and from the manger to the cross, spent his
          whole life in the deepest poverty, suffering and affliction; he
          descended below all things that he might rise above all, and we
          are told that he had not money enough to pay his taxes to Caesar,
          and had to send Peter to catch a fish to get money for that
          purpose. He was poor all the way through his life. Is it any
          worse for you, or me, or any other Saint of God, to suffer
          persecution, affliction, poverty or trials than for our great
          Leader, President, Redeemer, King and Savior, who is going to
          come in the clouds of heaven? No, not a particle. As some of our
          brethren have said, there is need for us to repent and humble
          ourselves before the Lord our God, that we may have and enjoy
          more of the Holy Spirit to prepare us for that which lies before
          us. It is our duty to unite together as a people; our temporal
          salvation lies in this, and we should not be backward in this
          matter. We should not only preach it, but be also ready to
          practice it; as leaders and as people, all should unite in
          carrying out that which is required of us. As an individual I am
          not afraid of starving to death, I never was afraid of that in my
          life, and I have traveled a great many thousand miles to preach
          the Gospel without money and without price, and so have many of
          my brethren who are around me, and we never starved to death, and
          we do not expect to. The amount of it is that everything we have
          there in these valleys of the mountains,--this Tabernacle, this
          Temple, these public grounds, and all the cities and town that
          have been built over six hundred miles of Territory, are the gift
          of God to us. The Lord knows this country was barren enough when
          we came here, and a faithful people were tried here with cricket
          and grasshopper wars, until famine stared them in the face; but
          they trusted in God, and they did not get disappointed.
          Our prayers should go up day and night in behalf of our
          President, and the Presidency whom God has sustained from the
          beginning, and also for the leaders of the people and for each
          other. We should labor and pray for this. We are making history.
          The travels and experience of the Latter-day Saints have been as
          interesting as the history of any people in any dispensation
          since the world began. Joseph Smith was a Prophet of God, and he
          was called to lay the foundation of this kingdom; he was raised
          up from before the foundation of the world for this purpose, and
          he came forth, through the loins of ancient Joseph who was sold
          into Egypt, and dwelt in the flesh, and nothing failed in its
          fulfillment as far as he was concerned. He lived until he planted
          the Gospel, until he received the apostleship, and every branch
          of the Priesthood of Aaron and Melchizedek, all the keys of the
          kingdom of God, everything that was necessary in order to lay the
          foundation of this Church and Kingdom, which God, through the
          mouths of holy Prophets, declared should be established in the
          latter days, to be thrown down no more for ever.
          Under these circumstances, of course, faith is required on the
          part of the Saints to live their religion, do their duty, walk
          uprightly before the Lord and build up his Zion on the earth.
          Then it requires works to correspond with our faith. I know the
          testimony of Jesus Christ is not palatable; it does not, and
          never did, suit the ears of the world at large. Christendom
          to-day does not like "Mormonism," because it comes in contact
          with the traditions handed down from the fathers; the world never
          did like the truth. We can not help that, it is our duty to bear
          a true and faithful testimony to the work of God, and to preach
          the Gospel which has been revealed to us in our day by the
          ministration of angels out of heaven. That Gospel is the same as
          was taught by Adam, and the ancient patriarchs, Abraham, Isaac
          and Jacob, Noah, Enoch, Methuselah and all the ancient Prophets,
          also by Jesus and the Apostles. There never was but one Gospel,
          and never will be but one delivered to the children of men, and
          that never changed and never will change in time or eternity. It
          is the same in every age of the world; its ordinances are the
          same. Believers in the Gospel had faith in Jesus before he came
          in the flesh, and repentance of sin was preached before his day
          as well as since; they also practiced baptism for the remission
          of sins and the laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy
          Ghost; and they had the organization of the Church with inspired
          men therein. Saith the Lord Jesus, "I have set in the Church,
          first Apostles, second Prophets, third Teachers, pastors, gifts,
          helps, and governments." What for? For the work of the ministry,
          for the perfecting of the Saints, etc. These things are necessary
          in every age of the world, and they have been restored in these
          last days, and they are true and will have their effect upon the
          children of men. When this Gospel is preached to the Gentiles and
          they count themselves unworthy of eternal life it will go to the
          house of Israel, and the first will then be last, as the last has
          been first.
          It is our duty as a people to unite together and not to be
          slothful in well-doing. As I have already said, we should let our
          prayers ascend before the Lord. I have more faith in prayer
          before the Lord than almost any other principle on earth. If we
          have not faith in prayer to God, we have not much in either him
          or the Gospel. We should pray unto the Lord, asking him for what
          we want. Let the prayers of this people ascend before the Lord
          continually in the season thereof, and the Lord will not turn
          them away, but they will be heard and answered, and the kingdom
          and Zion of God will rise and shine, she will put on her
          beautiful garments and be clothed with the glory of her God, and
          fulfill the object of her organization here upon the earth.
          Therefore, I say, brethren and sisters, let us do our duty. Let
          us pray for the Presidency of this Church; let us uphold and
          sustain them by our faith and by our works. They are called of
          God, they have been our leaders for years. President Young has
          led this Church longer a great deal than any other man. His works
          and his life have been before you, and you know him, and the
          course he has pursued. God has blessed him and he has been
          profitable unto us. The revelations of God and the principles
          which he has brought forth have been a consolation to Israel. Our
          prayers should ascend for him that he may be restored to health
          and be preserved by the hand of God. We should pray to the Lord
          for everything else that we stand in need of. Then we should go
          to and do our duty in building the Temples of our God, that we
          may magnify our calling, and be saviors on Mount Zion, for the
          living and the dead. In the seventeen hundred years which are
          past and gone, over fifty thousand million people have gone into
          the spirit world who never saw the face of a Prophet or of an
          Apostle, and never heard the words of an inspired man, for during
          the whole of that time no man was called of God to build up his
          kingdom of the earth. Whatever the Christian world may think,
          these things are true. When the Apostles were put to death the
          Priesthood went from the earth, and the Church went into the
          wilderness, or, in other words, there was a falling away among
          the Gentiles, as there had been before among the Jews. Those
          generations are in the spirit world, shut up in prison; they have
          got to be visited by men who held the Priesthood in the flesh,
          that they may preach the Gospel unto them, the same as Jesus did
          when he went to preach to the spirits in prison during the three
          days and nights when his body lay in the tomb. This is our duty.
          And I will here say that every Elder of Israel who lays down his
          life, whether he dies in his bed, or is put to death by the
          enemies of truth, when he goes into the spirit world his works
          follow him, and he rests in peace. The Priesthood is not taken
          from him, and he has thousands more to preach to there than he
          ever had here in the flesh. But it depends upon the living here
          to erect Temples, that the ordinances for the dead may be
          attended to, for by and by you will meet your progenitors in the
          spirit world who never heard the sound of the Gospel. You who are
          here in Zion have power to be baptized for and to redeem your
          dead. The resurrection and the coming of the Messiah are at the
          door. The signs of heaven and earth indicate the coming of the
          Lord Jesus Christ. The fig trees are putting forth their leaves
          in the eyes of every man who has the faith of the Gospel. Let us,
          therefore, try and do our duty. Let us attend to the ordinances
          of the house of God, and unite ourselves according to his law,
          for Jesus will never receive the Zion of God unless its people
          are united according to celestial law, for all who go into the
          presence of God have to go there by this law. Enoch had to
          practice this law, and we shall have to do the same if we are
          ever accepted of God as he was. It has been promised that the New
          Jerusalem will be built up in our day and generation, and it will
          have to be done by the United Order of Zion and according to
          Celestial law. And not only so, but we have to keep that law
          ourselves if we ever inherit that kingdom, for no man will
          receive a celestial glory unless he abides a celestial law; no
          man will receive a terrestrial glory unless he abides a
          terrestrial law, and no man will receive a telestial glory unless
          he abides a telestial law. There is a great difference between
          the light of the sun at noonday and the glimmer of the stars at
          night, but that difference is not greater than the difference of
          the glory in the several portions of the kingdom of God.
          I always have said and believed and I believe to-day, that it
          will pay you and me and all the sons and all the daughters of
          Adam to abide the celestial law, for celestial glory is worth all
          we possess; if it calls for every dollar we own and our lives
          into the bargain, if we obtain an entrance into the celestial
          kingdom of God it will amply repay us. The Latter-day Saints have
          started out for celestial glory, and if we can only manage to be
          faithful enough to obtain an inheritance in the kingdom, where
          God and Christ dwell, we shall rejoice through the endless ages
          of eternity.
          I thank God that my ears have heard the sound of the Gospel. I
          thank God that I have been preserved upon the earth to live to
          see the face of an Elder of Israel, to be called of God and to
          administer the ordinances of his house. I traveled a good many
          miles with President Joseph Smith, as some of you did; I have
          also traveled a good many miles with President Young and with the
          Apostles and Elders of Israel, and I have never seen the hour
          yet, in the midst of our deepest afflictions and persecutions,
          that I was sorry that I had embraced the Gospel, and I hope I
          never shall.
          I pray God my heavenly Father that he will inspire our hearts as
          Latter-day Saints, that we may become one and, not having the
          fear of man before our eyes, but the fear of God, that we may be
          ready to do whatever is required of us, and to carry out the
          counsels of the servants of God. When we do this we shall be
          happy, and we shall be saved whether in life or in death. I pray
          that we may pursue this course, and that we may overcome the
          world, the flesh and the devil, and inherit eternal life, for
          Jesus' sake. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / George
          Albert Smith, October 11, 1874
                        George Albert Smith, October 11, 1874
           Delivered a the Semi-Annual Conference, in the New Tabernacle,
                  Salt Lake City, Sunday Morning, October 11, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                           HOLY--ENCOURAGE SUNDAY-SCHOOLS.
          This being the closing day of the Conference, and as we are
          administering the sacrament, we naturally call our minds up in a
          way of discipline for ourselves, on various subjects which
          pertain to our every-day life. The Apostle James tells us that
          "faith without works is dead, being alone," and good works are
          certainly the best illustrations of that faith which prompts us.
          As our brethren will soon scatter through the different wards and
          settlements of the Territory, and to other parts of the world, we
          wish them to carry forth just and wise impressions in relation to
          the simple principles of faith and practice which pertain to the
          holy Gospel, and to disseminate the instructions they have
          received, that all may be benefited thereby. When we come here
          and take bread and drink of the cup in memory of the death and
          suffering of our Savior, we witness unto him that we remember
          him, that we love his law, that we are determined to abide by his
          Gospel and that we will do all in our power to walk in the
          principles of faith and patience, forbearance and longsuffering,
          and of truth and righteousness in which we are engaged. As a
          short illustration, and to draw the minds of the congregation
          directly to the points of instruction, I am disposed to read a
          portion of the rules of the United Order.
          Rule one says, "We will not take the name of the Deity in vain,
          nor speak lightly of his character or of sacred things." I am
          sorry to say that many professed Latter-day Saints are careless
          in the observance of this rule, which every Latter-day Saint, and
          every person who has respect for his own character must certainly
          consider most wholesome and wise, and absolutely obligatory. Let
          us be very careful, and never indulge in profane language or use
          the name of the Deity except in such a manner as becomes his high
          and holy position and our dependence upon him for every breath we
          draw; and let us also inculcate in our children a respect for
          that chaste, discreet, upright and pure language which is
          becoming Saints of the Most High.
          Rule two reads--"We will pray in our families morning and
          evening, and also attend to secret prayer." Now brethren and
          sisters, remember this. Those of you, if any, who have been
          careless and negligent on this subject, remember how often God
          has heard our prayers and how dependent we are upon him for every
          blessing we possess and enjoy, and for the protection which has
          been extended unto us. While almost all the world has been ready
          to destroy the Latter-day Saints from off the earth, the Lord has
          answered our prayers and has protected us, as it were, in the
          hollow of his hand. Let us not forget to call upon him morning
          and evening, that our families may learn, from their childhood,
          to observe this great and important duty. And before we lie down
          to rest or rise in the morning let us lift up our hearts in
          secret prayer to the Most High, asking his protection and
          blessing in all things, that by united faith we may be able to
          perform the great and arduous duties which are placed upon us.
          And in our prayers let us remember our Bishops and Teachers and
          those in authority,--the President of the Church, his counselors
          and all those who act in the holy Priesthood that the Spirit of
          the Almighty may rest upon them as well as upon us, that with one
          heart and one mind we may have a knowledge of the things of God;
          and that by observing these duties of prayer and preserving
          ourselves in purity before the Lord, when teaching, instruction,
          or counsel is sent forth among the Saints, or revelation is
          proclaimed unto us, we may have enough of the Holy Ghost in our
          hearts to know, each for himself or herself, whether these things
          are true or not; and that when false spirits go forth and lead
          men astray into darkness, error and folly, we may know the true
          from the false, detect those who are liars, and expose them as
          may be necessary.
          The third rule is--"We will observe or keep the word of wisdom,
          according to the spirit and meaning thereof." Remember this,
          brethren and sisters. I hear occasionally of brethren indulging
          in intoxicating drinks, and I see many of them yet, even young
          men, who indulge in the use of tobacco, a habit which is very
          pernicious and injurious to health, and a violation of the word
          of wisdom. There are also other violations of this rule among us
          which should cease, for we are told in the word of wisdom that if
          we will observe it with all our hearts, keeping the commandments
          of God, we shall have faith, health and strength, marrow in our
          bones, and have wisdom and great treasures of knowledge, and the
          destroyer will pass by us and not slay us. Brethren, how general
          it is with us when persons are sick and afflicted, or when our
          children are sick, to say to the Elders--"Brethren, come and lay
          your hands upon them," and in thousands of instances they are
          healed. Perhaps we are losing some of our faith. We read in the
          Scriptures that King Asa, whom God had healed and blessed, when
          he was diseased he trusted not to the Lord, but sought
          physicians, and King Asa died. While we recommend and approve of
          using every reasonable means within our power to preserve our
          lives and those of our children, we do depend, first of all, upon
          faith in the holy Gospel, the administration of its ordinances
          and the fulfillment of the promises of God; and inasmuch as we
          observe the word of wisdom and keep the commandments of God we
          have faith, and we have the promises of God, upon which we can
          rely, and by which thousands and thousands are delivered from the
          afflictions which prey upon them.
          "We will treat our families with kindness and affection; and set
          before them an example worthy of imitation. In our families and
          in our intercourse with all persons we will refrain from being
          contentious and quarrelsome. We will cease to speak evil one of
          another, and cultivate a spirit of charity towards all. We
          consider it our first duty to keep from acting selfishly or from
          covetous motives, and we will seek the interest of each other and
          the salvation of all mankind." This is rule four, and in calling
          your attention to it I wish it to be remembered that it enters
          into our business transactions and every-day life. I have noticed
          in the course of many years that I have traveled and preached,
          being in hundreds of families--that some men were pleasant an
          agreeable, while others were crabbed, cross, ill-natured and
          surly in their disposition; the very tone of their voice would
          show it. This is all wrong. We should cultivate kindness,
          forbearance and patience in our families, and a spirit that will
          incline them unto us, and in all things set such an example
          before our children that we may be as shining lights unto them,
          that as they grow up imitating our examples they may become
          pillars of society, plants of renown and ornaments in the kingdom
          of God, and not be led by covetousness, dishonesty, idolatry or
          any corrupt motive whatever. Consider all these things, and
          remember this as one of the rules of the United Order which it is
          of special importance that we should observe.
          Rule five teaches--"We will observe personal cleanliness,
          preserve ourselves in all chastity, refrain from adultery,
          whoredom and lust, and discountenance and refrain from all vulgar
          and obscene language and conduct." In regard to this rule, I am
          sorry to say that the influx of so-called civilization and
          Christianity in our midst has shown its effects upon some portion
          of our community, and that strict and firm adherence to the
          principles of chastity, for which the Latter-day Saints have been
          remarkable ever since the organization of the Church and the
          gathering of the people, seems, in some instances, to be wanting.
          We call upon all such persons to repent and humble themselves
          before the Lord; and we exhort all Latter-day Saints to maintain
          such high position before God that every act of their lives may
          be approved of him. Never let us be guilty of any word or deed
          that we will be ashamed of before our father, mother, brother, or
          sister, or before our heavenly Father. This is a principle that
          we should cultivate, maintain and abide by in all things; and
          wherever any have been foolish enough to fall or go astray,
          through the toils or snares that have been set for them, let them
          repent and humble themselves before the Lord, and let a spirit of
          unity, harmony, peace, stern integrity, purity and chastity abide
          in every heart, for if we ever inherit blessings and glory, of we
          ever are made partakers of the thrones, dominions,
          principalities, powers and endless lives which pertain to the
          exaltation of the kingdom of God, we shall do so by maintaining a
          purity like that of Joseph who was sold into Egypt.
          The sixth rule is--"We will observe the Sabbath day and keep it
          holy." I regret to say that I have noticed a great many instances
          of laxity in the observance of this rule, and I wish the Elders
          and teachers in all the Branches and settlements to preach and
          practice the observance of the Sabbath. Brethren, work six days,
          and on the seventh rest and observe the Sabbath according to the
          revelation; and impress this principle upon the Saints everywhere
          by practice. I remember once I was in a hurry to come to Salt
          Lake City. Fillmore was then the only settlement between my place
          in Parowan, Iron County, and the settlements in Utah County. The
          Sunday was very fine; we had attended meeting and, having been a
          long time away from the Brethren in Salt Lake City, we wanted to
          hurry on. I certainly thought we could travel twenty miles on
          Sunday evening, as well as not, so we started. I was a little
          conscience-stricken; I said to myself--"This is not exactly
          right, and I am afraid we shall not get along as well as we would
          to have staid until Monday morning." We drove about Twenty or
          Twenty-two miles that evening. I told the brethren to tie up the
          horses, but some of them got loose and went clear back, and in
          the morning the brethren had to go the whole distance after them.
          That is what we gained at the start by breaking the Sabbath; but
          it did not end there. The next day we broke a wagon, and then we
          got into a storm, and we were six days in reaching Fillmore, and
          it took us some twelve days to reach this city. Now, I do not
          believe that, as a general thing, anything is gained in property
          or in time by working on the Sabbath; and I advise and exhort all
          men professing to belong to the United Order, or to be Latter-day
          Saints, to observe the Sabbath; keep it holy, devote it to
          worship, to the study of good books, to rest, to imparting
          instruction, to attending meeting, and do not, under any
          circumstances, lapse into a habit of thinking that you can do as
          you please on the Sabbath, and that so doing is clear gain. We
          have, some day, to meet our Father in heaven, and that day is not
          very far off with many of us. I meet here at this Conference
          quite a number with whom, forty years ago this summer, or last
          spring, I marched on the Zion's Camp journey--a thousand miles.
          That does not seem long, but we are marching steadily to our last
          account, and we should not let our love for self, our desire for
          gain, or our anxiety for pleasure so mar our path that when we
          come into the presence of our Father in heaven we shall be
          smitten with the reflection that, instead of observing the
          Sabbath, according to the command, we went off spreeing, or
          hunting, or we went looking after cattle, or getting wood, or
          dashing around and breaking the Sabbath time and again, for if
          our conscience reproves us, God is greater than our consciences,
          and he surely will condemn us.
          Rule seven--"That which is not committed to our care we will not
          appropriate to our own use." That is a very modest way of
          agreeing or promising that we will not steal or take that which
          does not belong to us. One of the ten commandments
          teaches--"Though shalt not steal;" and in the Book of Doctrine
          and Covenants we are informed that he that steals shall be cast
          out and delivered to the law of the land. These things should
          never be forgotten by those professing to be Latter-day Saints. I
          have noticed, in the course of my life, a great many men
          professing a great deal of piety, who have been very dishonest.
          In the neighborhood where I was raised there were men who would
          charge a good round price for a bushel of wheat, and then use a
          false measure. In that way they reared children to be dishonest.
          If there are fathers or teachers in Israel who indulge in this
          covetous practice, or who take that which does not belong to
          them, they set examples before their children which cause them to
          grow up a generation of thieves. I was once conversant with an
          incident illustrative of this principle. A young man was cut off
          from the Church for stealing. When he came home his mother
          upbraided him for it "but," said he, "mother, you have yourself
          to thank for it. My father always told me not to steal; he
          commanded me not to touch a thing that did not belong to me, but
          you used to send me to the neighbors to steal eggs; you taught me
          to steal, and you are measurably responsible for my disgrace."
          This was rather a bitter pill for the mother, but is contains an
          important lesson, if we will consider it.
          "That which we borrow we will return according to promise, and
          that which we find we will not appropriate to our own use, but
          will seek to return it to the proper owner." There is too much of
          a want of confidence in the midst of the Saints. When some
          promise they too often fail to keep their word; and those who are
          in business do not feel as free to trust their brethren as
          outsiders do. I have had brethren come to me and say--"They are
          not as accommodating to me as outsiders are," and I sometimes
          answer them by saying--"Perhaps you are not as punctual to pay
          your brethren as you would be to pay an outsider." Many of our
          brethren are not, and this is all wrong. Confidence should be
          established in each other by fulfilling what we undertake. What
          we borrow we should return; what we agree to do we should
          fulfill. We should be careful to make our agreements so that we
          can fulfill them, and then do so, and if through some unforeseen
          circumstances we are unable to do so, we should immediately make
          known the facts of the case, and be honest. I hope these cases
          are by no means common, but I am satisfied they are more numerous
          then they ought to be.
          The ninth rule requires us, as soon as possible, to cancel all
          indebtedness, and thereafter to avoid getting into debt. For the
          last few years, owing to the opening of mines, the construction
          of railroads and the good crops that have been raised, the
          prosperity of the people has been very great, and as a wise and
          prudent community we should have taken a course to have had the
          benefits of all this means without being involved in debt, for,
          notwithstanding we have been put to vast expense in consequence
          of persecution and oppression from our enemies, we have been in a
          condition to have saved a great deal. But many of our brethren
          are in debt, notwithstanding all this prosperity. Now this rule
          requires that we take measures to pay, or cancel, our debts as
          soon as possible, and then avoid getting into debt by living
          within our means. Ambition to push forward and make wealth should
          not induce us to involve ourselves in debt, but we should, with
          economy and prudence, live within our means.
          The residue of these rules I will not read, but commend them to
          the consideration of all the brethren, as being of the utmost
          importance. There is one, however, to which I will just call your
          attention. It refers to our manner of dress and living, and
          requires us to use proper economy and prudence in the management
          of all things intrusted to our care. I exceedingly regret to see
          the disposition to extravagance which exists among us, as also a
          disposition to purchase from abroad a variety of articles that
          are not of the first necessity. I do think that it is right and
          proper that we should take the utmost pains in our power, as a
          United Order and a united people, to provide everything that we
          can produce within ourselves, and not be sending away all the
          money we can get to buy things that we can make ourselves. Our
          brooms, for instance, and a great deal of our clothing, and most
          of our shoes can be made here. With all the ridicule that has
          been expended in relation to the wooden-soled boots and shoes, I
          sincerely advise every man who is afflicted with a cough, or who
          is subject to colds or rheumatism, asthma, or any ailment of that
          kind, to put wooden soles under their feet this Fall. They will
          preserve health a great deal better than rubber; and if they
          happen to be paid for it will be much better than to owe a trader
          for them, or to wear leather that is like a sponge, through which
          the damp will penetrate, striking directly to and promoting cough
          or rheumatism. I am of the belief that wooden-soled shoes worn in
          winter will cure nine cases out of ten of rheumatism and will
          save the lives of may of our children, by keeping their feet dry
          and warm. I feel like preaching up wooden shoes as a medical
          prescription, if you please, as well as on the score of economy.
          I wish you brethren when you return to the settlements to look
          after the schools, see that they are established in all the
          settlements for the winter, that no child be left without a
          chance to acquire a knowledge of the common branches of
          education. See that all the poor are provided with the means of
          sending their children to school, that no child be deprived of
          the privilege of attending school through the poverty of its
          parents. Make your schoolhouses comfortable and pleasant. Make
          the seats of the proper height and comfortable, so that the
          children may not become humpbacked or round shouldered, or
          contract spinal complaints, or anything of that kind through
          their seats being awkwardly constructed. There is plenty of
          lumber in the mountains, and plenty of workmen; let them make
          good comfortable seats for the children. See that your
          school-rooms are properly warmed, and be careful as to the
          characters of the men you employ for school teachers. Do not hire
          a scoundrel, a seducer, or blackleg for the position, for if you
          employ as teachers of your schools those who are foul, wicked,
          and corrupt in their habits, you assume a terrible
          responsibility, for the impressions made upon and the lessons
          taught to the children while attending school have a great
          influence for good or evil, upon their future lives and welfare.
          I believe I have preached on this subject almost every Conference
          since I can remember, or since I began to speak at Conferences,
          and I shall continue to do so. Let parents be stirred up in
          regard to the education of their children, and provide for their
          welfare. In the early days of the Territory the first house built
          in every settlement, as a general rule, was a school-house. Let
          this rule still be followed, and let our children receive their
          education directly within ourselves; and if we want them to study
          the advanced branches, fill up our home universities; instead of
          sending them abroad to be educated in foreign schools, uphold
          your own university and sustain our own schools.
          After the close of this Conference meetings in this building will
          be discontinued during the winter and will be held, under the
          directions of the Bishops, in the ward assembly rooms every
          Sunday afternoon and evening. The forenoons will be devoted to
          Sunday Schools, and I exhort the brethren and sisters to have
          their children ready, so that they can be at school in time. And
          I invite the young men and especially the young sisters, to
          attend Sunday schools; I want to stir up the young men to go
          there and form Bible classes. And I exhort the elders to be
          present as teachers, that there may be no lack of teachers. I
          want to express my admiration of brother Goddard and a number of
          other school superintendents and teachers, with whom I am
          acquainted, because of their efforts to spread among the young
          throughout the Territory a knowledge of the principles of the
          Gospel, as taught in the Bible, Book of Mormon, Book of Doctrine
          and Covenants, and in the standard works of the Church. And I say
          to the young men, that if they will attend the Bible classes and
          study the catechism and use in our schools, and make themselves
          familiar with it, they will become so thoroughly informed in the
          principles of the Gospel and the evidences of it, that when
          called upon to go abroad to defend the doctrines of Zion they
          will be well prepared to do so. I invite the Elders to see that
          these classes are formed in all the settlements.
          I will again repeat the idea that has already been presented, to
          sustain our own literary institutions and publications,--the
          Juvenile Instructor, the Woman's Exponent, the Deseret News,
          which contains discourses by the First Presidency and Twelve, and
          also the publications in the several counties. They are conducted
          by men who take pains to disseminate the truth, as well as the
          general news of the world, and they ought to be sustained, that
          their influence may be extended and increased. Do not spend your
          money in buying lies, nor your time in reading yellow-covered
          literature, or in studying such things as are calculated in their
          nature to degenerate the human mind and degrade the soul. One of
          the best books you can read on the earth is the Bible. It is the
          finest history ever published in Great Britain. Study its history
          and its precepts. It is the foundation of the sciences of the
          world, and the basis of the laws of all the Christian nations;
          and although men in every direction have departed from it, we can
          read and understand it for ourselves. See that it is on every
          table, in every household, in every pulpit, and that it is the
          school book of every family throughout the Territory.
          I want to say, with regard to the Temple at St. George, that the
          walls are between twenty-five and thirty feet high. Some of the
          brethren remained at work upon it all summer, some of them
          without shoes and poorly supplied with clothing. About 309
          persons have reported, I believe, as going there this winter to
          aid in pushing forward the work on this Temple, as volunteers
          from the different settlements of the Territory. We hope, by
          means of this help and contributions that may be sent there, to
          have the roof on early next spring, and very soon a baptismal
          font in the basement, in which we can begin the administration of
          the principle of baptism for the dead and the ordinances of the
          Gospel in connection with our fathers. The climate in St. George
          is well suited to those in feeble health, and such of that class
          of persons as desire to do so can, after the Temple is completed,
          go there and spend the winter, and attend to the ordinances for
          their dead.
          I have invited the brethren, during the Conference, to go and
          look at the Temple foundation in this city. It is a very
          beautiful foundation, and the design of the building is grand.
          The labor of taking the granite from the mountains, bringing it
          on to this ground and cutting it and putting it in position is
          immense. You saw a great many prepared stones that are not laid:
          I will explain how that has happened. We had a good many
          beginners who could shape a rough stone, but not so many
          stonecutters who could do a finished job, and all the stones for
          the outside had to be done but skillful workmen. A great number
          of those that you see lying round, numbered up as high as
          thirteen or fourteen courses, were cut by men who were not
          skilled workmen. That is the reason why so many are not yet laid
          in the building. We found it necessary during the harvest to
          dismiss fifty workmen of this kind from the block, that they
          might go and aid in gathering in the harvest, because we could
          not supply them with work so far in advance of the laying.
          Brother Trueman O. Angell has been exceedingly zealous in
          attending to this work: he has been so fearful lest a stone
          should be laid wrong that he has been on the walls early and late
          to see that every stone has been set in its proper place, to a
          hair's breadth. His zeal has been such that I have almost feared
          that, in spite of the faith of the Saints and the energy of the
          man's soul, he would work himself into the ground. I want the
          brethren to pray for him that he may be sustained in his arduous
          One great difficulty in getting along on this Temple, has been
          the want of money to supply the workmen with actual necessaries.
          We have been accustomed, during the prosperous times of the past
          year of two, to pay them one-fourth in cash or merchandize; this
          season we are unable to do that, hence an invitation was given by
          the First Presidency and the Bishops, to all the Saints, far and
          near, to make a donation of fifty cents a month to aid in the
          prosecution of the work on the Temple the name of all who respond
          are to be enter in the "Book of the Law of the Lord." Quite a
          number have responded, and some means has come in from this
          source. I now invite the brethren, sisters, strangers, and all
          who feel an interest in the Temple, and wish to have their names
          enrolled in the "Book of the Law of the Lord," to make this
          monthly contribution, that the hearts of the workmen may be
          gladdened and that the hands of those who are called to conduct
          this business may not be tied. We have been compelled to borrow
          money and to pay interest to carry on this work; the resources
          that have come in have been insufficient, and the kind that has
          come in has not been such that we could make it available in
          carrying on the work as vigorously as we desired to do on this
          Temple and upon that at St. George. I appeal to the brethren also
          to remember the Temple in their prayers. Let us pray that God
          will give us power to erect and dedicate it, and that he will
          preserve the life of our President to organize the Priesthood in
          all its beauty and order in that Temple, and fulfill to the
          uttermost the duties of those keys, which were delivered to him
          by Joseph Smith, pertaining to the twelve and to the church, and
          to the bearing off of this work in the last days. Let us lift our
          hearts to God that he will preserve his servants for the
          accomplishment of this work. And while we raise our hearts in
          prayer for this object, let our souls be filled with benevolence
          and liberality to pay or tithes and offerings. I fully believe
          that, if one half of the brethren had honestly paid tithing as we
          understand it, our hands would not have been tied. Think of these
          things and act upon them.
          Most of the emigration the present season has been through their
          own means and the aid of relatives and friends, and a goodly
          number have thus been gathered. We now again invite all those who
          owe the Perpetual Emigration Fund, or whose relatives or friends
          are indebted to it, to remember their obligations, that those in
          the old countries who desire it may be gathered here as fast as
          possible. We also invite the brethren to sent for their friends
          from abroad, but before expending your money for that purpose,
          find out whether those whom you wish to gather still remain
          Saints, or whether they have corrupted their ways before the
          Lord. It would be a very good idea to learn this before expending
          money to help them, though it is an act of charity to bring
          anybody from the old world and place them on the broad plains of
          America, where they may be enabled to obtain homes of their own.
          I want to say, in relation to the missionary labors of President
          Brigham Young in going to Europe and founding and starting the
          system of emigration, and gathering thousands upon thousands of
          people from the old world and placing them in positions to get
          homes of their own, that he is the most distinguished and
          extensive benefactor of his race of any living man within my
          knowledge. We regret that he has been unable to speak to us
          during this Conference. We feel confident, however, that, had the
          gospel which he has preached for the last forty-three years to
          the inhabitants of the word, been received as honestly by those
          who heard it as it has been declared by him and his brethren, all
          the human family would have had a knowledge of the gospel to-day,
          and the Millennium would have been brought it. This, however has
          not been the case; but the form preaching of President Young, and
          the acts of his life in teaching and being a father to the people
          will be had in everlasting remembrance; and we will exercise our
          faith that God will restore his health, that his voice may again
          be heard amongst us, though that is not possible at this time. We
          are gratified to know that he is able to be in our midst, to hear
          our testimonies, see our countenances, and know that within us
          there is a portion of that Holy Spirit which God has revealed for
          our salvation.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / George
          Q. Cannon, October 11, 1847
                         George Q. Cannon, October 11, 1847
                        DISCOURSE BY ELDER GEORGE Q. CANNON,
           Delivered at the Adjourned Semi-Annual Conference of the Church
            of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, in the New Tabernacle,
                 Salt Lake City, Sunday Afternoon, October 11, 1847.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
                            IN THE CHURCH ALL-IMPORTANT.
          The teachings which we have heard at this conference have been of
          a character most important to us as a people, and should be
          treasured up by all who have heard them; and those of us who
          reside in other places who have attended Conference should carry
          the instructions they have received to the places where they
          reside, that the spirit of this work and the spirit of this
          conference may be disseminated among all the Saints.
          We are living in one of the most important periods of the earth's
          history. Events are of such a character connected with us as to
          excite the greatest interest, and no one connected with the
          people, who feels as he or she should, can help being interested
          in the way in which this work is progressing and attracting
          attention throughout the earth. There is no people, to-day, on
          the face of the earth who are situated in this respect as are the
          Latter-day Saints. God is dealing with us in a most remarkable
          manner, and is fulfilling, through his people, the predictions of
          the holy prophets, and we behold on every hand, when we open our
          eyes to see and our hearts to understand, the great events which
          God said should transpire in some day and age in the future.
          There is one thing with which I am greatly impressed, and that
          is, within a few years how determined the enemies of the kingdom
          of God have been to destroy that work which he has founded. How
          they have envied, maligned, and maliciously persecuted this
          people, and how they have concocted plots for their overthrow! In
          this last Congress no less than eight bills were introduced,
          having for the object the subjugation of the people of Utah to
          the ring of men who have sought their destruction, and yet the
          population of this entire Territory does not number as much as a
          second class city in the United States. I remarked to members of
          Congress, of the House and of the Senate, that Congress was
          paying us a great compliment, a people so insignificant
          numerically, so devoid of wealth, in the estimation of many so
          illiterate, so deluded, so bound and fettered and so barbarous in
          our habits. I think it is a great compliment that the
          representatives of forty millions of people should bestow such
          attention upon one hundred and fifty thousand. Yet it is not
          these representatives who wish so much to do us harm, but it is a
          body of men here who are anxious to gain power and influence at
          the expense of a people whose prosperity and influence they envy.
          I have been impressed with the wonderful manner in which we have
          been advertised now for some years back. I can not fail to
          recognize the hand of God in this. I look around me and I see a
          people who, if they were not Latter-day Saints, if they did not
          believe the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, would not be noticed
          in any particular manner, but who, because they are Latter-day
          Saints, are know more widely and whose movements attract more
          attention and excite greater interest, whose public men are more
          advertised and their lives and characters published more widely
          throughout the earth than those of many rulers of great nations.
          Men say it is because this is such a great imposture, because
          Brigham Young is a false prophet, and because the Latter-day
          Saints are deluded. These are singular statements to make, as
          though a few deluded and ignorant people, led by a false prophet,
          could occupy the attention of the nations of the earth. It is
          something unheard of in history except, as we testify, in the
          case of those who have preceded us in the same work. Jesus said
          to his ancient disciples, "Ye are the light of the world. A city
          that is set on a hill cannot be hid." The eyes of the world were
          upon them. And in our day we behold the same effect. The
          Latter-day Saints and their work have been like a city set on a
          hill. They have attracted the gaze of the nations, and that, too,
          without any especial effort on their part to make themselves
          conspicuous. The clamor of our enemies has greatly contributed to
          this. What do their attacks accomplish for us? They advertise us
          and give us an importance to which we could not otherwise attain.
          Every effort that is made to destroy this work or to embarrass
          its onward progress, or to deprive its leaders of their lives or
          of their liberties only enhances its importance in the midst of
          the earth, gives it publicity, preaches the gospel, attracts
          attention, causes men and women to think, to reason and to
          investigate what it is about this people that creates so much
          I have said, and I do not think I exaggerate in the least degree,
          that the efforts of the past three or four years, in this
          Territory, to destroy this work and to deprive the leaders of
          this people of their liberty have had more effect in preaching
          what is called Mormonism than the efforts of a thousand
          missionaries would have been able to accomplish. "Well, but,"
          says one, "they say such terrible things about you, and it is no
          advantage to be spoken of in this manner, to be maligned and
          accused of wrong." It is an advantage, because, as I have said,
          it causes men and women to reason and reflect, and it promotes
          investigation. There have been hundreds who have come here and
          been brought in contact with this people, who have been
          astonished at what they have seen, because what they have seen
          has been so different in every respect from the stories that they
          have heard, and the effect and revulsion of feeling have been
          much greater than they would have been had they never heard
          anything about us at all. And it is our business to live down the
          lies that are put in circulation about us. I, myself, rejoice in
          these things, because I see the hand of God in it all, I see the
          fulfillment of the predictions of the holy prophets, I see a
          people being gathered together who are united, not so much as
          they should be, but still more united than they were before they
          heard this gospel, and I rejoice that this is the case.
          I hope that we shall continue to cultivate within us the
          principle of union. Remember the story of the Scythian king. When
          on his deathbed he told his boys to bring him a bundle of arrows.
          "Now," said he, "let me see you break this." They tried one after
          another, but they could not break the bundle. "Cut the string
          that ties them," said the king, "and try to break them singly."
          They cut the string and tried the arrows singly and broke the
          entire bundle with ease. There is power in concentration of
          effort, and it is this which gives us our character in the earth
          to-day. Cause the Latter-day Saints to be disunited, divide us
          asunder, split us unto factions and what would we amount to? Why,
          nothing at all, we would not count anything in the history of the
          race or of the earth; but the very notice that we receive, the
          attention that we attract is a tribute to our union and to that
          amount of the cementing influence which prevails among us as a
          people. Union among us is all-important, because we have a power
          opposed to us that will destroy us if it can, there is no
          disguising this fact, it is publicly announced everywhere. It was
          hoped when the railroad was completed that that would do it; it
          was hoped that when the mines were discovered and emigration
          floated in here that the accompanying influences would accomplish
          it, that fashion, luxury, vise with all their corroding
          influences at work at this system would destroy it, or produce
          the disintegration of the entire people. Every effort of this
          kind has for its object the destruction of the union of this
          people. Why, if we were disunited, if we were split into factions
          we might have houses of ill-fame on every corner in juxtaposition
          with churches; we might have drinking saloons and gambling
          saloons; we might practice harlotry to the fullest extent, and
          who would indict us for it or say one word against our practices?
          No one; we would be following the fashion of the world. Why, it
          would furnish themes for preachers and they would have excellent
          texts, for where these things abound they flourish. But because
          we are united, because we have set our faces against these
          things, because we discourage vice we are unpopular, and we shall
          continue to be so until a better judgment prevail.
          I have said there is not disguising the fact, nobody attempts to
          disguise it, that the object sought for at the present time is
          the destruction of this people as a people. Not that many would
          avow their wish to have our lives taken, but to destroy our
          union, to destroy the influence of our leading men. Now, I ask
          you, Latter-day Saints, are you so blind and so foolish as not to
          see that this is the object of every attack which is made upon
          us? You who do not feel in favor of more union and of
          concentrating our efforts, ask yourselves this question and
          reflect upon the objects sought to be obtained by those who are
          arrayed against us. We do not seek the destruction of any, we
          have never been aggressive, we have never sought to force our
          opinions upon any one; we have invited all to come to this land
          and proclaim their principles here, without let or hindrance.
          They have not been gagged in their faith, or restrained or
          restricted in any manner. They have had the privilege of
          preaching to the fullest extent in our tabernacles and
          meeting-houses, and we have not had the least objection thereto,
          but on the contrary we have been pleased to see them. But when we
          are threatened with destruction, as a pure matter of self-defence
          it is our duty to organize ourselves to resist these attacks, and
          the people who would not do it are unworthy of an existence upon
          the earth. I, therefore, have ever been, am now, and will always
          be, while I feel as I do at the present time, in favor of greater
          union among this people, in favor of the United Order, in favor
          of everything that will give us strength and cement us closer and
          closer together and make our lines more impregnable than they
          are. And as I said the other day so say I again, with the help of
          God, my life shall be devoted to that object with all the
          strength, influence and ability which God shall give me among
          this people. Is there any harm in this? Not in the least, so long
          as our objects are what they are. We want to save, we want to
          preserve, we want to disseminate good principles, and any man or
          woman who will practice this can live forever in the midst of the
          Latter-day Saints and never have any difficulty. Every
          fair-minded man who comes to this land and deports himself as a
          gentleman, and any fair-minded lady who comes and deports herself
          in like manner, might live here until they were as old as
          Methuselah was, if we continued as we have been, without ever
          having the least cause of feeling against us. We ask no more from
          others than we are willing to extend to them with the greatest
          liberality and freedom; but we expect to have liberty and freedom
          for ourselves, and we shall contend for them in every
          constitutional and legal manner as long as we live.
          My brethren and sisters, if you have not got this spirit of union
          let me advise you to seek for it. Humble yourselves before God
          and seek for it until the desire to be more closely united will
          burn within you, until you regard it as one of the greatest
          objects that can be attained. In a family capacity, in a ward
          capacity, or as a people, from north to south, we should not have
          these clashing and conflicting interests--Latter-day Saints
          against Latter-day Saints, and yet all of us professing to have
          the building up of God's kingdom at heart. I do not know of
          anything else that we have to do. God has sent us here for this
          object, and I do not know any better thing that we can engage in
          than to build up the Zion of God. It is as good and as great a
          labor as we can be engaged in, in fact it is the labor which God
          has assigned unto us as a people and as individuals, and if any
          of us are engaged in anything else we are not in the line of
          duty, and we should turn aside from that and pursue the path with
          God has marked out.
          May God bless you and fill you with his Holy Spirit, that you may
          carry it with you to your various homes in the remote parts of
          the Territory, and that it may live and burn within you, fill you
          with good and holy desires to do the will of God, keep his
          commandments and live in close communion with him, and then you
          need never be afraid of being deceived, for you can not be if you
          have the Holy Ghost within you, and that this may be the case, is
          my prayer, in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 17 / Orson
          Pratt, November 15, 1874
                           Orson Pratt, November 15, 1874
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER ORSON PRATT,
               Delivered in the Fourteenth Ward Assembly Rooms, Sunday
                                 November 15, 1874.
                            (Reported by David W. Evans.)
          We profess, Latter-day Saints, to be living in a dispensation
          called the dispensation of the fulness of times, a dispensation
          commenced and committed to men in our age by the administration
          of angels, by the revelations of the Holy Ghost, by bringing
          forth the word of God to the people, by restoring authority to
          the children of men to administer the ordinances of the Gospel,
          and by committing to them a message which is required to be
          published among the inhabitants of the earth. It is very evident
          from what was declared by the ancient Apostle that another
          dispensation after his day was to be introduced among the
          inhabitants of the earth. We read, in the first chapter of Paul's
          epistle to the Ephesians, that in the dispensation of the fulness
          of times all things that are in Christ shall be gathered together
          in one. It is in accordance, therefore, with this dispensation
          that we see the people gathering here in this Territory and
          extending their settlements east and west, north and south. But
          we are only a very few of the people that God intends to gather
          together in one in this dispensation. It is literally a
          dispensation of gathering, not merely a gathering together of
          those who are here on the earth in the flesh; but before it is
          completed all things in Christ which are in heaven will also be
          gathered and united with those who are in Christ on the earth. We
          have but barely commenced in this glorious dispensation. The
          Church has been organized, by divine revelation, angels have
          appeared, the apostolic authority has been restored by the
          ministration of angels, and the kingdom of God has been set up in
          fulfillment of the promise made to the ancient Prophet Daniel--a
          kingdom which shall never be destroyed, never again be rooted out
          of the earth and never be committed to another people, but it
          shall continue forever, while all human governments, of whatever
          name they shall be, will be rooted out of the earth by the divine
          judgments that will take place as the kingdom of God rolls forth
          among the nations. This is clearly foretold by nearly all the
          Prophets whose words are recorded in the divine Scriptures. They
          have spoken of the day when the Gospel should be restored; they
          have spoken of the period in which the kingdom of God should be
          set up and what it should accomplish; they have spoken of the
          signs that should be made manifest in those days both in the
          heavens and upon the earth; they have told us concerning the
          gathering, not only of the literal descendants of Israel, from
          the four quarters of the earth, but also of the gathering of all
          the Saints. These are matters so clearly foretold that I have
          often wondered in my own mind that people professing to believe
          the Bible and to receive the plain and pointed instructions
          contained therein, have not been looking for a dispensation
          connected with all these events that I have named.
          What can possibly be the meaning, Latter-day Saints, of that
          prediction in the revelations of St. John, that another angel
          should fly through the midst of heaven, having the everlasting
          Gospel to preach to them that dwell on the earth, to every
          nations and kindred and people and tongue, saying with a loud
          voice--"Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his
          judgment is come; and worship him that made heaven, and earth,
          and the sea, and the fountains of waters?" What can possibly be
          the meaning of this prediction and vision of John in relation to
          the future and the hour of God's judgment if there never was to
          be another dispensation made manifest to the children of men?
          Certainly, before John saw this vision the Gospel had been very
          extensively preached among the inhabitants of the earth, to both
          Jews and Gentiles, so much so that Paul, subject of the preaching
          of the Gospel, says it had been preached to every creature under
          heaven, "whereof I, Paul, am made a minister." It seems,
          according to his declaration, that he had an understanding in
          some way, either by revelation or from some other source, that
          the Gospel that was committed in his day had already been
          preached before his death to every creature under heaven; yet
          John, after this period, while on the Island of Patmos, after
          having written several epistles to the churches that were built
          up called the seven churches, and reproved them for their
          wickedness, apostacy and lukewarmness, threatening to remove
          their candlesticks out of their places, and fighting them with
          the spirit of this mouth; after having seen all this in vision on
          Patmos and writing to these churches, had presented before him a
          scene that was still in the future--a scene of darkness,
          apostacy, sin and corruption, wherein all nations should be more
          or less overcome, and during which certain powers should arise
          and fight against the kingdom of God, and make war with and
          overcome the Saints, and then another power should be established
          on the earth under the name of "The Mother of Harlots"--and
          ecclesiastical power, described as a woman sitting on a
          scarlet-colored beast, having a golden cup in her hands full of
          the filthiness and abominations of the earth, causing all nations
          to drink out of that cup, and making them drunk with the wine of
          the wrath of her fornication. John saw this portrayed among the
          events that were to take place after his day. He saw the Saints
          overpowered and, as the Apostle Paul had clearly predicted, a
          great falling away take place, and that men should be lovers of
          their own selves, proud boasters, blasphemers, disobedient to
          parents, unholy, without natural affection, truce breakers, &c.,
          having a form of godliness but denying the power thereof. This
          was clearly seen by the revelator on Patmos, as well as by the
          Apostle Paul. After having seen this, beholding all nations
          overcome, all people, kindreds and tongues worshiping according
          to the creeds and ceremonies of this great ecclesiastical power
          that had risen, and supping out of the golden cup, the angel who
          revealed these things to John, in order to encourage him, showed
          that this wickedness would not always continue among the nations,
          and also gave him a view of the manner in which God would again
          visit the inhabitants of the earth, and he uses this prediction
          which I have quoted about the coming of another angel.
          It seems that this angel was to come at a period when there would
          be no nation, kindred, tongue or people on the whole earth that
          had the power and authority to administer the Gospel of Christ.
          The Ancient Apostles had very different views on this subject
          from those entertained by the divines of the present day. Almost
          all Christian denominations suppose that there have been
          Christian churches on the earth ever since the days of the
          Apostles, according to the New Testament pattern; but the ancient
          Apostles saw that, instead of being churches of Christ, they
          would have a form of godliness, denying the power, in other
          words, they would have not power to administer the Gospel as it
          was administered in ancient times; and this apostacy should be so
          universal in its nature that all people, nations and kindreds
          upon the face of the whole globe should be overcome by it, so
          much so that there should be no Christian church left, no people
          left that could administer the ordinances of the Gospel, and
          hence it needed to be restored from heaven, and the method of its
          restoration was to be by an angel from heaven.
          If we go among all these different denominations calling
          themselves Christians, and enquire of them if God has sent an
          angel, the answer of every soul will be--"No angel has come in
          our day. God sent angels to the Christian church in the primitive
          ages of Christianity, but now, for something like seventeen
          hundred years we have not been visited by angels, and no new
          message has been given." This will be their declaration
          throughout the four quarters of the globe, wherever Christian
          churches, so called, are organized. Go to the great Mother
          Church, the oldest in existence among those professing
          Christianity, and make the enquiry of her members, and they will
          make the same declaration--"No message later than that given in
          the New Testament. God has said nothing by new revelation to
          guide our church. The holy Scriptures and the traditions handed
          down from the fathers are our rules of faith and practice." Go to
          the Greek church, which separated from the Roman Catholics, the
          members of which are now so numerous that they number their
          millions, and ask them if they have received any message from
          God, and they will give an answer similar to that given by the
          Catholics--"Nothing new, our ecclesiastical authorities,
          archbishops, cardinals, etc., do not reveal anything new." This
          you will find recorded in their writings. They declare that it is
          their business to interpret the old and to bring forth what the
          ancient fathers have said, and the church must be guided by these
          interpretations, and by the decrees of its uninspired
          authorities. Thus we may trace the Christian world in the four
          quarters thereof, and we shall find that they all acknowledge and
          declare that this angel, spoken of by John the Revelator, has
          never appeared to any of them.
          Suppose that we now enquire of the Latter-day Saints. What do you
          believe, Latter-day Saints, about this matter? Why your universal
          answer is--"We as a people, without one dissenting voice, believe
          with all our hearts that God has sent his angel from heaven and
          restored the everlasting gospel in all its fulness." What do you
          say, you missionaries, elders and high priests, and you seventies
          and apostles who have gone forth during the last forty-four
          years, and published these tidings in the four quarters of the
          globe? Why your universal answer is--"Wherever we have been we
          have published that which we were commanded--namely, that God has
          sent his angel from heaven, that that angel, by his
          administrations in our day, has brought to light a sacred record
          called the Book of Mormon, containing the fulness of the
          everlasting gospel as it was preached in ancient times upon the
          American Continent among the forefathers of the Indians." This
          has been your testimony for almost half a century has it? Yes.
          Why did you bear this testimony among the people? Because you
          were commanded to do so, it was a message committed to you, and
          if you had not fulfilled the requirement given in the commandment
          you would have been under condemnation.
          Then so far as the faith of this people is concerned it is
          consistent with the prediction that was uttered by the Apostle
          John. John said that such should be the case, the Latter-day
          Saints say that such is the case; one predicted that it should be
          in the future, the other declares that it has already come to
          pass, and that God, in our day, has appeared unto some, and
          through them, committed the fulness of the everlasting gospel to
          the human family and commanded them to bear record of it to all
          people. There is nothing inconsistent so far a this item of faith
          is concerned.
          But here will arise a question in the minds of some who have not
          investigated this subject; they will admit that, if our testimony
          is true, the message which we proclaim is one of the most
          important that has been committed to man for seventeen hundred
          years past. This all will admit; for this message does not
          concern one nation alone, but all nations, for, as John stated,
          it is to be declared to every nation, kindred, tongue and people.
          Why? Because none of them had the gospel at the time it was
          revealed, that is the reason. If there had been one little corner
          of the earth where the gospel was preached and its ordinances
          administered by divine authority, there would have been no
          necessity for its restoration by an angel, all we would have had
          to do would have been to hunt up that little corner of the earth,
          where some tongue or people had the gospel and the church
          organized among them; they could have baptized and confirmed us,
          and administered to us the sacrament and all the blessings of the
          gospel. But from the very fact that there were no such people on
          the earth in the four quarters thereof, it had to be restored
          anew from heaven. This is our testimony, and it is plain and
          pointed, but the query is, among those who have not investigated
          it--"Is this true?"
          Among the evidences that have accompanied the committing of this
          gospel to men in our day by an angel, let me refer you to those
          which were given before this church arose, when Joseph Smith,
          that farmer's boy, was commanded to go to the hill Cumorah and
          take from the place of their deposit the plates from which the
          Book of Mormon was translated, and to translate them. When he was
          commanded to do this work, and while in the act of doing it, the
          Lord God sent his angel to three men besides the translator, and
          to these men the angel exhibited, leaf by leaf, the unsealed
          portion of these plates, and at the same time the voice of the
          Lord from Heaven was heard, testifying that the work had been
          translated correctly, and commanding them to bear witness of it
          unto all people, nations and tongues to whom this work should be
          sent. They, therefore, prefix their testimony in the Book of
          Mormon to that effect, testifying to the ministration of the
          angel, to seeing the plates and the engravings thereon, and to
          its correct translation.
          Here then, were four witnesses--the translator and three others,
          before the rise of this church, who testify that God sent his
          angel. It is not a speculation with them, but something
          absolutely certain. They could not be deceived in relation to
          this matter. Joseph Smith could not be deceived when the angel
          told him to go and obtain these plates, and gave him a vision of
          the very place where they we deposited, and he actually obtained
          them, and with them the Urim and Thummim, by which he translated
          them. And then these three men, in answer to their prayers, saw
          the angel in his glory, saw him descend from heaven clothed with
          glory, saw him take these plates, saw them in his hands, heard
          the voice of God from heaven bearing testimony to the correctness
          of the translation, commanding them to bear witness to all
          people, they could not be deceived in relation to this matter, it
          was something positive to them; and if you say they were
          deceived, with the same propriety an infidel may say that all the
          prophets from Adam down to the days of John, who professed to see
          angels, were deceived; with the same propriety they could contend
          against the holy Scriptures on the same ground that many would
          contend against the testimony of the Book of Mormon.
          Were there any others who saw the plates besides these four men?
          Yes. How many? Eight, all before this church was organized. These
          eight witnesses have also given their testimony, and it is
          prefixed to the Book of Mormon. The eight did not see the angel,
          but they saw the plates, and they testify that they handled them,
          and saw the engravings thereon, all of which had the appearance
          of ancient workmanship, and, in the close of their testimony they
          say--"And this we bear testimony of, and we lie not, God bearing
          witness of it."
          This makes twelve witnesses to the original of the Book of
          Mormon. Would to God that we had twelve witnesses to the original
          of the Bible, so that it might stand on equal testimony with the
          Book of Mormon! But, alas, there is not one original in existence
          that we know of, and neither has there been for many generations
          past, of any one book of the Bible from the beginning of Genesis
          to the end of Revelation. Says one--"Do you mean to say that King
          James's translators did not translate the Bible from the
          original?" Yes that is what I say. They translated it from the
          language of certain manuscripts, which language, of course, was
          not the English language; but they did not translate from the
          original. Why? Because, for aught we know, these manuscripts
          might have been the 999th copy from the original. There might
          have been two thousand copies handed from one scribe to another
          and transcribed instead of the original. Indeed, what man for the
          last ten centuries has ever seen one of the originals of the
          Bible? I do not know of any, and we have no account in history,
          either sacred or profane, that the original has ever been seen by
          any person for the last ten or twelve centuries; but we have the
          testimony of many learned men, men who profess Christianity and
          to believe the Bible, that, in gathering together the most
          original manuscripts they could find and comparing them one with
          another--manuscripts in the Hebrew, Greek and other ancient
          languages--they found that they contradicted one another, and
          that there are something like thirty thousand different readings
          among those different manuscripts. Some of these learned men have
          collected together an immense quantity of these different
          manuscripts and have expended large fortunes in so doing. For
          what purpose? That they might translate them into the English
          language; but when they came to compare them they found such a
          variety of contradictions that they gave the task up in despair.
          Others have taken such manuscripts as they could get hold of, and
          have done the best they could. One thing is certain, King James's
          translators, being among the wisest men and greatest scholars of
          their day, did justice to the subject as far as it was possible
          by uninspired men.
          Now the Christian world believe the Bible, so do the Latter-day
          Saints. WE believe that the original was just as true as the Book
          of Mormon, that is our faith; and that the Book of Mormon is just
          as true as the original books of the Bible. The world believe
          that the Bible is a divine record, but on what evidence do they
          believe it? Certainly not because there is the testimony of any
          parties who ever saw the original. Here then, we bring forth the
          Book of Mormon to you, and we present to you twelve witnesses who
          have seen the original of that book. Do you not perceive that, so
          far as this one species of evidence is concerned, the Book of
          Mormon is supported by a greater amount of evidence than the
          Bible? Is there one person among all the Christian churches and
          denominations, for the last sixteen centuries, who knows the
          Bible to be true by the ministration of an holy angel? No, not a
          single individual, for according to the testimony of all the
          Christian sects, during the whole of that time no angel has been
          sent and nothing new has been revealed.
          If it be true that God has not revealed anything since the days
          of John the Revelator, then no person has had a knowledge given
          him as to the truth of the Bible. But how it is with the Book of
          Mormon? Four men have seen an angel. Now compare or contrast this
          evidence concerning the two books. These four men were men of
          your own times, men whom you could cross-question, witnesses whom
          you had the privilege of interrogating in relation to their
          testimony. But we are told that the Bible bears record of its own
          divinity, and that the Saints who lived in ancient days did see
          angels. Now suppose we admit that the Bible does bear testimony
          of its own divinity. Turn to and read the declarations of Nephi
          and Alma, and of the prophet Jacob, and many other prophets who
          wrote the various books in the Book of Mormon, and they bear
          testimony that they saw angels. The Bible bears testimony that
          the prophets who wrote the various books which it contains did
          the same. Now put one on a par with the other and, so far as that
          species of evidence is concerned, one is just equal to the other.
          Again, the Bible says, in giving a commission to the ancient
          apostles to go and preach the Gospel, that certain signs should
          follow all the believers through the whole world. "Go ye forth
          and preach the gospel to every creature under heaven, he that
          believes and is baptized shall be saved, and he that believeth
          not shall be damned; and these signs shall follow them that
          believe--in my name they shall cast out devils." Mark now, not
          the apostles alone, they were not the only ones whom these signs
          should follow, but they were to follow every creature in all the
          world who should believe, making it as definite and unlimited as
          possible. They were not only to have salvation, but they were to
          be blessed with certain signs following them. What were they? "In
          my name they shall cast out devils, they shall speak with new
          tongues, they shall take up serpents, and if they drink any
          deadly thing it shall not harm them, they shall lay hands on the
          sick and they shall recover." Certain definite promises were made
          to the believers by which they could distinguish themselves from
          all the rest of mankind, and it is recorded in the following
          verses of the same chapter, that the apostles went everywhere
          preaching the word, the Lord working with them and confirming the
          word by signs following.
          What are we to understand by confirming the word with signs
          following? Are we to understand that the Apostles alone confirmed
          the word? No. There were certain signs which were to follow the
          believers wherever they preached. The promise was to every
          creature in all the world. They went everywhere and preached this
          word, and the Lord wrought with them by confirming the word to
          every believer throughout all the word, by causing the promise to
          be fulfilled to those believers. Here then, the believers had no
          particular necessity for asking the apostles to perform miracles,
          for they themselves were blessed with certain miraculous signs,
          and the Lord confirmed these signs upon them, so that they were
          not obliged to seek foreign testimony, or for miracles wrought by
          somebody else, for every person, male or female, who believed and
          obeyed that gospel, obtained for himself, the signs promised.
          This is what the Scriptures inform us, and in this dispensation,
          when God revealed this Gospel anew, and sent his angel and
          organized his church, and sent forth his servants, the same
          promise was made as to the ancient Saints. I can read it here in
          this book, for this is the book of the revelations and
          commandments that was given to the Prophet Joseph Smith before
          the rise of this church, and a short period afte