Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25
                               Journal of Discourses,
                                      Volume 25
                        DISCOURSE BY PRESIDENT GEO. Q. CANNON,
                       Delivered in the Meeting House, Provo,
                        Sunday Morning, September 2nd, 1883.
                              Reported by John Irvine.
                    (Concluded from page 376, JOURNAL DISCOURSES)
                                  SETTLEMENTS BEING
                                     CLAIM THAT
                                 GOD--RESTORATION OF
                                      WORLD HAS
                                       LAW OF
          All that is necessary on our part is to fear God and keep his
          commandments--to be brave and loyal and true to the cause that He
          has established upon the earth--to live such lives of purity as
          shall enlist heaven in our behalf. That is all that is necessary
          for us as individuals, or as a people, to do. God is doing a
          great work among us, much greater than many of us imagine. We do
          not see Him, but He is nevertheless in our midst. We do not see
          Jesus, but He is nevertheless in our midst. We do not see angels,
          but they are nevertheless in our midst. God is working to get
          this people to the perfection that He desires them to attain. We
          are building Temples. Who shall enter these Temples when
          completed? Shall the adulterer? Shall the whoremonger? Shall the
          thief? Shall the drunkard? Shall the blasphemer? Shall the
          Sabbath breaker? Shall the men who defile themselves by the sins
          of the world enter therein and receive all those precious
          blessings that God has to bestow? Ask yourselves who shall enter
          therein. I tell you, my brethren and sisters, that God demands of
          us a holiness of life that we cannot conceive of at the present
          time; but there are duties we can conceive of, that we should
          attend to. We should put away sin far from us. We should live so
          that our God will be very near to us. And we should encourage
          faith in our hearts.
          There is a class of people who have been disfranchised because
          they have chosen to obey the word of God; they have been excluded
          from the polls, excluded from office, and another class of
          Latter-day Saints are now in possession of the offices. Shall
          those who have not obeyed the law of God as perfectly as their
          brethren and sisters shall they look down upon those who have
          obeyed that law and say: "You have been put out of office; we
          have chosen the better part; we have done that which has resulted
          in the most good; and if it had not been that we were reluctant
          to obey that law, this Territory to-day would not be in the hands
          of the Latter-day Saints?" Shall that be the expression of
          feeling on the part of those who have been, for various reasons,
          prevented from obeying the fullness of the law of God? Who! to
          this people if that were to be the feeling. I bear my testimony
          this day that God has commanded us, His servants, to obey His
          law, and I would not, for all this world, for all its honors, and
          for everything that is within the power of man to bestow--I would
          not be in any other condition that the one I am in, so far as
          that law is concerned. I dare not risk my salvation outside of
          obedience to that law. There may be men who will get into the
          celestial kingdom who have not obeyed that law--God will be their
          judge--but I dare not put myself in that position; I dare not
          risk my eternal salvation and exaltation on any such contingency
          as that. The law has been revealed. The moment the revelation was
          published and it came to my knowledge, it became a command to
          me--though I was not mentioned personally--and I accepted it as
          such. I have obeyed it as such, believing in my hear that God
          will save and exalt all those who perfectly carry it out. It is
          the hatred of that principle among others, that creates
          excitement. Yet, by that principle, God has designed to
          accomplish His purposes on the earth, and to redeem His people
          from the evils which afflict mankind at the present day. The
          other agencies that are at work among men to-day, are complete
          failures. What has all Christendom done towards stopping or
          arresting the progress of prostitution? All the preachers
          combined have no more effect upon it that the whistling of the
          wind. It increases and spreads. And who shall deliver mankind
          from that sin and dreadful train of evils? There is nothing can
          do so but the power of God, the commandments of God, and the
          revelations of God. God has revealed the law by which it shall be
          accomplished, and we have seen the effects of it to a certain
          extent. We see a generation growing up here, young men and young
          women, who are the admiration of all who behold them__fine
          physical specimens of manhood and womanhood--pleasant faces and
          lovely countenances and forms--showing that the blessings of God
          have evidently rested upon the parents. I thought of Brother
          Smoot's case. I remarked but for plurality, he would to-day have
          been without a child of his own. But see what a number of
          children he has, and what beautiful children they are. It is so
          everywhere throughout these mountains. The blessing of God has
          rested down upon His servants. Their houses are filed with
          beautiful children. The blessing of God has attended the men who
          have obeyed His law, and the women also. They have had their
          trials; but these have had the effect of purifying them. They
          have gained strength and power with God, and with man also, and
          the day will come when they will be honored men and honored women
          on the face of the earth. That day will come. It may be distant
          yet for a little while, but it will come most assuredly.
          I pray God my Heavenly Father, to fill you with the Holy Ghost,
          that you may be enlightened thereby, and that you may be led to
          see and comprehend the greatness of the work in which we are
          engaged, and the character of those influences we have to contend
          with. There are unseen influences on both sides. There are unseen
          and invisible agencies that God our Heavenly Father has brought
          to bear upon this work to aid us, and there are on the other side
          those unseen agencies of evil. We can tell them by their fruits
          and by the results of their actions upon the children of men. Let
          us remember that it is not that which is before us alone that we
          have to contend with, but that there are powers behind those that
          we see in the flesh, and those powers are determined to destroy
          this work. It is a contest between Satan and God, and there can
          be no doubt as to the result; and if we cling to the truth we
          shall take part in all the glorious triumphs of this work, which
          I pray for in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 /
          Wilford Woodruff, January 6, 1884
                          Wilford Woodruff, January 6, 1884
                   Delivered in the Assembly Hall, Salt Lake City,
                         Sunday Afternoon, January 6, 1884.
                              Reported by John Irvine.
                                    PRINCIPLES OF
                                 TIME--PRINCIPLES OF
                           GOSPEL OF CHRIST IS THE LAW OF
          There is a proverb or saying which I have heard a good many times
          in my life, and which I think bears a great deal of weight, and
          that is, "truth is mighty and will prevail." I think this has
          been manifested in every capacity in which truth has been used
          whether applied temporally or spiritually; whether applied in the
          capacity of nations, or families, or individuals; whether applied
          to the world or to the kingdom of God. I think that in every age
          of the world, truth, whether it has been popular or unpopular,
          has proved itself, in the end of its labor, to prevail in all
          cases. When Columbus was moved upon by the Spirit of God, to
          cross the ocean to find a new continent, his object and desires
          were unpopular with those by whom he was surrounded, and it was
          only after a good deal of labor that he gained favor in the eyes
          of any of the rulers of the nations whereby to receive assistance
          sufficient to carry out his wishes. But in the end he prevailed.
          He found a new world, as it were, which to-day contains a
          population of the Anglo-Saxon race, numbering fifty millions of
          people. The commencement of Columbus' project was certainly
          unpopular, but the result has proved it true. And so in all
          cases, whenever men have been inspired to receive truth, or to
          promulgate any principle, which would be a benefit to the human
          family, they have generally been unpopular. When Robert Fulton
          undertook to demonstrate the power of steam in a steamboat, the
          crowd which gathered to behold the event, did not gather to see
          success; they gathered there to ridicule, to see a man fail in
          performing a work which they considered impossible. But when the
          steam was applied to the vessel it moved. The invention was
          certainly very crude, but there was truth in it, and it has
          prevailed to a great extent; for steam is the great motive power
          of all machinery in the world, in a great measure. And so with a
          Scottish Earl when he announced that there was a man going to try
          and light the City of Edinburgh with smoke. The man was looked
          upon as crazy. But there was truth in that smoke, and it lit the
          city, and it has given light to a good many other cities since.
          The principle prevailed, and is now adopted throughout the world.
          So with Mr. Morse, the electrician. He unsuccessfully in the
          first instance, [in 1837-8] sought aid both from the American
          Congress and the English government to enable him to carry out
          his ideas; but ultimately [in 1843] he gained assistance from
          Congress, and his invention of telegraphy was demonstrated a
          success, and is now made use of throughout the civilized world.
          And so we might go on to show that in almost every instance when
          men have undertaken to introduce new principles--principles of
          truth--principles that would benefit the human family--they have
          generally been very unpopular, until the truth was made manifest
          to the world.
          The same thing may be applied to the introduction of the
          principles of eternal truth pertaining to the salvation of the
          human family in a spiritual point of view. When our Lord and
          Savior Jesus Christ, stepped forth into the world to occupy the
          position to which He had been ordained of God, there were but few
          individuals who had faith in Him, or who were looking for the
          coming of the Son of Man in fulfillment of prophecy. Jesus, all
          His life, it may be said, from the manager to the cross, was very
          unpopular with the mass of the human family, more particularly
          the inhabitants of Jerusalem. His history is before the world. He
          died an ignominious death upon the cross, and those of His own
          Father's house, the High Priests, and the leading men of
          Jerusalem, were all in favor of His death. Yet the Savior
          possessed truth. He offered truth to the world; He offered life
          and salvation to the world. But the principles He taught were
          unpopular in His day. He gathered around Him a few followers; but
          the acceptance of His principles cost them their lives, as it did
          the life of the Savior Himself. I do not know of a man--except it
          was John the Revelator--who escaped. They all died violent
          deaths. They had to seal their testimony with their blood. Some
          were crucified; others were sawn asunder, beheaded, or in some
          way put to death for the world of God, and the testimony of Jesus
          Christ. They were put to death for their religion. How is it
          to-day? What name has been more honored, or more held up as an
          ensample to the world than the name of Jesus Christ? The Catholic
          world, the Protestant world, in fact the whole Christian world
          are professing to honor the name of Jesus Christ. The Savior had
          truth, but it was not received in His day and time.
          With regard to our own time my mind is often led to reflect upon
          it. Half a century has past and gone before the eyes of this
          generation, since the God of heaven commenced, as in former ages
          of the world, the fulfillment of prophecy and revelation
          contained in the Bible--this good old book that the Christian
          world profess to believe in so much. The Lord has set His hand to
          bring to pass some of these prophecies and principles which He
          had foreordained before the world was, and which He had left on
          record through the medium of holy men who wrote and spoke as they
          were moved upon by the Holy Ghost from generation to generation.
          Those prophecies are with us to-day. They are contained in the
          Bible, a book that is published by millions throughout the
          Christian world. The Christian world profess to honor the Bible,
          and to honor the prophecies and sayings of Christ and the
          Apostles. But do they believe in the fulfillment of these things?
          Do they believe in the fulfillment of these principles and truths
          which are today being fulfilled in the eyes of heaven and earth?
          No. Those prophecies and those principles--which the God of
          heaven has set His hand to carry out--are as unpopular to-day
          throughout the Christian world as they were when Jesus of
          Nazareth stood in the flesh and proclaimed the same to the Jewish
          nation. We occupy the same position that they did in that day and
          generation with regard to these truths. Now, as I have said,
          truth is mighty. It always has prevailed in every age of the
          world. It will prevail in this dispensation as it has done in
          others. The God of Israel will no more fail to-day to carry out
          the principles which He has stretched forth His hand to
          establish, than he did in the days of either Adam, Enoch, Noah,
          or Jesus, or in the days of any other dispensation.
          The principles to which I allude--the principles of the
          Gospel--are worthy the attention and comprehension of at least
          the Latter-day Saints, and it would be well for the Christian
          world to take them into consideration also; for if truth is going
          to prevail in the earth it certainly will involve the destiny of
          this whole generation., Jew and Gentile, high and low, rich and
          poor, Zion and Babylon. It will involve the destiny of the
          world--of the fourteen hundred millions of people who breathe the
          breath of life in it. And I bear record and testimony, as a
          servant of God, that the God of heaven has set His hand to carry
          out those great and eternal principles which He decreed before
          the world was made and which He has left on record through the
          mouths of His prophets, to be fulfilled in the last dispensation
          and fullness of times. Are those principles popular to-day? They
          are not. Why not? Because the world is not governed by the spirit
          of inspiration; because its people do not seek the Lord; because
          they do not honor His name; but they are governed and controlled
          by other principles. But the Lord will rule over His own Kingdom,
          notwithstanding the Devil has great dominion do-day as he has had
          in almost every age of the world. The inhabitants of the earth
          have their agency. They must use that agency according to the
          desires of their own hearts, whether they be for good, or whether
          they be for evil. But the day is at hand when the Lord will show
          the children of this generation that there is a God in Israel,
          and He has done in other dispensations when He has reigned. In
          all the history of the dealings of God with man this one
          principle, sooner or later, has manifested itself: that virtue
          exalteth a nation, while sin is a reproach to any people. You
          will see that this has been manifested in the history of all
          nations under heaven--in their rise and progress and prosperity,
          and in their fall and decline and in their final overthrow and
          destruction. You will find in every instance that sin, error,
          darkness, falsehood, wrong-doing, have laid the foundation of the
          overthrow of every nation and city under heaven from the
          foundation of the world until the present time. What men sow they
          will reap, and what measure they measure to others will be
          measured unto them.
          To-day we occupy a peculiar position as a people--as Latter-day
          Saints here in these mountains. Here is a people growing up in
          the earth who are organized into a Church, called the Church of
          Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. How did the organization of
          that Church come about? Why, the God of heaven has proclaimed
          through His prophets Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and others, whose
          writings are contained within the lids of the Bible, that in the
          latter days He would set His hand to call forth His Church out of
          the wilderness and out of darkness and error, and establish it
          upon the foundation of truth, Christ Jesus being the chief corner
          stone. The God of heaven also proclaimed through Daniel, 4,000
          years ago, that in the latter days he would set up a kingdom
          which should never be destroyed; and the kingdom should not be
          left to other people, but it should break in pieces and consume
          all these kingdoms and it should stand forever That prophet also
          declared that a little stone should be cut out of the mountain
          without hands; that the stone should become a great mountain and
          fill the whole earth; and that it should break in pieces all
          other kingdoms. Was that Prophet inspired by the Spirit and power
          of God? I say in the name of Israel's God he was, and so was
          Isaiah when he spoke of the gathering of the people unto the
          mountains of Israel to establish the Zion of God in its beauty,
          strength, power and glory. The God of heaven also inspired a
          prophet as he stood upon the Isle of Patmos--John the
          Revelator--and in connection with the great events of the last
          dispensation and fullness of times he saw, in vision, an "angel
          fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting Gospel to
          preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation,
          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." Now I want this congregation; I want the world; I want the
          Christian world; I want the priests of the day who cry aloud for
          the blood of innocence to be shed to carry out their desires--I
          want these priests and all who are laboring to overthrow
          "Mormonism," to carefully inquire, whether those prophets were
          inspired of God. And if they were inspired of God, whether it is
          right for them to make war against the work of God in the earth?
          Whether it would not be better to let these things alone--to
          leave them in the hands of the Lord, and allow Him to govern and
          control as He sees fit? And if these men were inspired of the
          Lord and made those proclamations--with thousands of others in
          the Bible and in the revelations of God--the question is, whether
          this warfare against God and against His work is going to
          prevail? The wicked will have no such power; for the Lord has set
          His hand to fulfill these things which have been predicted by His
          Prophets--to establish His Church and Kingdom upon the earth. He
          has called Prophets, and they were inspired of God. Joseph Smith
          was a Prophet of God. He was a man raised up by the power of God.
          He received the testimony of the Gospel of Jesus Christ by
          visions and revelation as did John the Revelator. Angels appeared
          unto him and taught him the ways of life. Those men who held the
          Priesthood--who were put to death in the flesh for the word of
          God, and the testimony of Jesus Christ--visited Joseph Smith.
          John the Baptist conferred upon him the Aaronic Priesthood;
          Peter, James and John, the Apostleship and Melchizedek
          Priesthood; and all the Prophets who held any keys and powers
          belonging to the Gospel these also visited Joseph Smith, and
          conferred upon him those keys and powers and authority to
          administer them on the earth. These are eternal truths, as the
          God of heaven lives, and they will prevail whether men believe
          them or not, or whether the wicked war against them or not. These
          truths belong to God Himself. He is the author of them. He has
          given forth certain decrees, and they will have their fulfillment
          in the earth.
          Now, as far as the Latter-day Saints are concerned, I will say to
          my brethren and sisters, we ought to contemplate these
          principles. There is no power organized beneath the heavens that
          can stay the hand of Almighty God. He has set His hand to carry
          out His purposes. The world hate this people, because the Lord
          has called them forth out of the world, the same as He called His
          disciples of old. This is the position we occupy to-day, as His
          people. though our numbers are small, yet "a little one shall
          become a thousand, and a small one a strong nation:" and the Lord
          will hasten it in His time. A little one has already become more
          than a thousand, or a hundred thousand, and in spite of all
          opposition this small one will become a great nation, and God
          will hasten it in His time, because God is our friend. Now, these
          are truths. They have emanated from God Himself.
          The Gospel of Jesus Christ is the law of salvation. No man can be
          saved without it. The Gospel is the power of God unto salvation
          to every one that believeth--to Jew or Greek, Catholic,
          Methodist, Baptist, or any other sect or party on the face of the
          We, as Latter-day Saints, are called upon to build up Zion. We
          have been gathered to be instructed by inspiration and through
          the medium of the Holy Priesthood, in the principles of eternal
          truth. This is our condition to-day. Fifty-three years have
          passed since this work commenced. Joseph Smith dwelt in the flesh
          some fourteen years after he organized this Church. He holds the
          keys of this dispensation on both sides of the veil, and will
          hold them forever. God ordained him to perform a certain work. He
          performed it. He stayed on earth until his work was finished. All
          the keys, powers and principles with God gave unto him he left
          with his brethren; although whatsoever he left with his brethren
          did not take from him; for as Jesus says in a revelation given in
          regard to the Priesthood:
          "Whoso is faithful unto the obtaining these two Priesthoods of
          which I have spoken, and the magnifying their calling, are
          sanctified by the Spirit unto the renewing of their bodies:
          "And he that receiveth my Father, receiveth my Father's Kingdom;
          therefore all that my Father hath shall be given unto him;
          "And this is according to the oath and the covenant which
          belongeth to the Priesthood;
          "But whoso breaketh this covenant, after he hath received it, and
          altogether turneth therefrom, shall not have forgiveness of sins
          in this world nor in the world to come."--Doc. and Cov., Sec. 84.
          Thus, although the Lord bestows upon His servants the same powers
          and blessings that He Himself holds, it does not take away those
          powers and blessings from the Father. The Father possesses all He
          had before. The Son possesses all that he hath given unto him. So
          do the sons of the living God. When a man bestows those gifts and
          blessings and powers upon others, he does not lost them himself.
          The Lord raised up Joseph Smith. He organized this Church. It has
          been organized for 54 years next April. And what has been the
          consequence? Have we had opposition? Yes. Have we had
          persecution? Yes. Is not the desire of a great many millions of
          people for our overthrow? Yes; and a great many wish us put to
          death. Some men go so far as to be willing to slay, utterly, men,
          women and children, because they believe what is termed
          "Mormonism," but which is really the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
          These things are proclaimed to the world to-day. What is the
          matter? Mormonism is unpopular. Why is it unpopular? "Because,"
          say the priests of the day, "it interferes with our rights. We
          preach for hire and divine for money, and if the Mormons were to
          prevail in the earth, we should lose our business, and we cannot
          endure it." "Why," says the world, "you profess to believe in
          polygamy, and that is why you are persecuted." No, you are
          mistaken about that. The worst persecution this Church ever
          endured was before polygamy was revealed to the Church. We have
          had more prosperity since we carried out that law, and endeavored
          to fulfill it according to the command of God, than we ever had
          as a people before. And here is the principle with me--I speak as
          an individual; I speak for myself--if this work is of God; if the
          Gospel of Jesus Christ, as revealed to Joseph Smith, is true,
          then God will take care of it; if the patriarchal law of marriage
          comes from the God of Israel, He will take care of it; He will
          protect and defend it, and He will uphold the people that carry
          it out. I say this is in the name of Israel's God. And if it is
          not of God, who wants it? I don't, neither do this people. I
          speak of this principle because I want my brethren and sisters to
          understand the views I have upon it.
          I know we are engaged in the work of the Lord. I know this is His
          Church. He has organized it with Prophets and Apostles in
          fulfillment of predictions made thousands of years ago. This is a
          work which was ordained before the world was. The Lord Almighty
          never created a world like this and peopled it for 6,000 years,
          as he has done, without having some motive in view. That motive
          was, that we might come here and exercise our agency. The
          probation we are called upon to pass through, is intended to
          elevate us so that we can dwell in the presence of God our
          Father. And that eternal variety of character which existed in
          the heavens among the spirits--from God upon his throne down to
          Lucifer the son of the morning--exists here upon the earth. That
          variety will remain upon the earth in the creations of God, and
          for what I know, throughout the endless ages of eternity. Men
          will occupy different glories and positions according to their
          lives--according to the law they keep in the flesh.
          But I want the Latter-day Saints to understand their position.
          Our trust is in God. With regard to men, it is our duty to treat
          our fellowmen aright; to leave them in the hands of God if they
          persecute us. The Lord has a controversy with this generation.
          This Bible, the Old and New Testament, contains a vast amount of,
          I will say, tremendous revelations, tremendous events, which hang
          over the heads of the people of this dispensation. Are these
          events going to fall unfulfilled? No; no more than they did in
          the days of the fall of Babylon, of Nineveh, of Jerusalem, and of
          other cities in the nations of the earth. When the inhabitants of
          Jerusalem became ripe in iniquity; though Jerusalem was the royal
          city, in which was the Urim and Thummim, and in which sacrifices
          were made unto the Lord, yet the city was laid low, and the Jews
          have been trampled under the feet of the Gentiles for 1,800
          years. We are living at the commencement of the Millennium, and
          near the close of the 6,000th year of the world's history.
          Tremendous events await this generation. You can read an account
          of them in the revelations of St. John; the opening of the seals;
          the blowing of the trumpets; the pouring out of the plagues,; the
          judgments of God which will overtake the wicked when Great
          Babylon comes in remembrance before God, and when the sword that
          is bathed in heaven shall fall on Idumea, or the world who shall
          be able to abide these things? Here we are living in the midst of
          these tremendous events.
          We are in the hands of God; our nation is, and so are the nations
          of the earth; and when they undertake to overthrow the Kingdom of
          God, which is decreed shall be established, they have somebody to
          fight against besides Joseph Smith, Brigham Young, or John
          Taylor, or any other of the leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ
          of Latter-day Saints. This warfare is between God and the devil,
          between light and darkness, truth and error, between the heavens
          and the earth; and that God who has supported His work from the
          creation of the world, is bound to do it unto the end. where have
          you ever read that the Kingdom of God would be overthrown in the
          last days? You cannot find it anywhere on the pages of the
          records of divine truth. No; the revelations of God will be
          fulfilled. And we must exercise faith in that direction. As the
          ancients had faith; as the world was created by faith; as Noah
          built an ark and preached the Gospel of repentance for 120 years
          by faith; as Abraham went out not knowing where he was going by
          faith, as the ancients performed many mighty works, such as the
          subduing of cities and kingdoms by faith; therefore I say to the
          Latter-day Saints, you are required by the God of Israel, your
          Heavenly Father, by his Son Jesus Christ, by the holy angels, and
          by every principle of eternal truth, to exercise faith in the
          revelations of God, for they will be fulfilled as the Lord lives.
          God is with this people. But we are required to hearken to his
          voice, obey his commandments, and humble ourselves before him.
          And I thank the Lord that I have lived to see the time when I
          believe there is a great improvement among the Latter-day Saints.
          I believe they are exercising greater faith in God. And there is
          a calmness prevailing among the Mormons--so called--that is a
          marvel and a wonder to the world. The world wonder why we are not
          excited over the opposition that is brought to bear upon us by
          the millions of people who inhabit this continent, as well as by
          the people of the nations of the earth. The reason of our
          calmness is--God is our friend, our lawgiver, our deliverer. If
          the Lord cannot sustain His work, we certainly cannot. But He
          can. He has always done it, and will do it to the end. Therefore
          I say to the Saints, fear not. Trust in God. Let not your hearts
          be faint. Let your prayers ascend to the ears of the Lord of
          Sabbaoth, day and night. Ask what you want. When you do that, the
          Lord will answer your prayers, if you ask what is right. There is
          where our strength lies. It is in God. I have no hope in anything
          else. But I do look upon the Latter-day Saints as occupying a
          most glorious position in this day and age of the world. this is
          the first time since God created the world that he has ever
          established a dispensation to remain on the earth until the
          coming of the Son of Man--to remain in power and strength and
          glory, until the Millennium, until He reigns whose right it is to
          reign. Behold what lies before you! Behold the power of God!
          Behold the prosperity of Zion! Behold the blessings which have
          rested upon your houses, your lands, your flocks and herds, your
          children--the blessings of the earth as well as of the
          heavens--in this mighty barren desert! Then should we have any
          doubts or fears with regard to the Kingdom of God? No! As a
          people we should rise up in faith and power before God, and make
          our wants known, and leave our destiny in His hands. It is there
          anyhow. It will remain there. And with regard to our nation, I
          leave them in the hands of God; but I would to God their eyes
          were open to see and understand the responsibilities that rest
          upon them. I would to God that the rulers of our land--the
          President of the United States, the Congress of the United
          States, the Supreme Court of the United States--would learn the
          responsibility the God of heaven will hold them to in the
          administration of those glorious principles laid down in the
          Constitution of the government of this country. The God of heaven
          will hold this nation, as well as all other nations, responsible
          for the manner in which these principles are used. If they misuse
          them, they will be held responsible, and will have to pay the
          bill. When innocent blood is shed, it costs something; and I
          would to God that our nation could understand the blessings they
          enjoy. There is no nation on the face of the earth that has the
          same liberty that is guaranteed to us by the Constitution of our
          Have we any warfare with our Government? Have we any reproach to
          offer them? Not at all. I feel sorry that this nation should sow
          seeds which when ripe will bring destruction; for I know as God
          lives that if this or any other government departs from the
          principles of truth, becomes ripened in iniquity, forsakes the
          Lord, forsakes the principles of life and liberty, the God of
          heaven will hold it responsible. Judgments will come upon the
          wicked. When men depart from the principles of truth and cleave
          unto darkness and wickedness, they reap the whirlwind; they lay
          the foundation for desolation.
          I pray God my heavenly Father, that his blessing may rest upon us
          as Latter-day Saints; that we may comprehend and understand our
          position, our duties and our responsibilities t God. When I look,
          brethren and sisters, upon this handful of men and women here in
          these mountains of Israel, say 150,000, out of the fourteen
          hundred million people that dwell on the earth; when I realize
          the responsibility that God has laid upon the Latter-day Saints,
          the responsibility of building up this great kingdom of our God,
          of proclaiming the principles of eternal life, light and truth to
          the world; when I reflect upon these things I ask myself the
          question, What manner of men ought we to be? Our numbers are
          small compared even with the inhabitants of this nation, not to
          speak of the inhabitants of the world; yet, as I said before I
          say again, the God of heaven looks to the Latter-day Saints to
          carry on His work.
          Then let us be careful. Let us realize our condition. Let us
          realize we are here upon a mission. Let us realize that we will
          be held responsible for the manner in which we will it. We should
          be willing to sacrifice everything for the upbuilding of the
          Kingdom of God. Any man who will seek to save his life and desert
          the principles of the Gospel, is not worthy of eternal life. How
          many have laid down their lives since the creation of the world
          for the sake of the truth? Jesus Himself descended below all
          things. He descended, I believe, lower than any other man will be
          called to descend. Are we greater than Jesus? If we are called
          upon to-day to lay down our lives, what of it? Is it not as well
          to die for the Gospel's sake as to die for anything else? A
          million of men, a few years ago, sacrificed their lives for the
          honor of this nation. No matter what we may be called to pass
          through, let us maintain our integrity to God. Where is the man
          whose mind has been lit up by the inspiration of God to
          comprehend the celestial kingdom, or the celestial law, or the
          Gospel of Jesus Christ, who can bear the idea of pursuing a
          course whereby he will be cut off from inheriting the blessings
          for which he has hoped in the future? No, I would rather die a
          thousand deaths than be deprived of these blessings. We have a
          long time to live when we get through here. There is all eternity
          before us. It will pay you, it will pay me--no matter what comes,
          no matter what this nation may do to oppress us--to be true and
          faithful to our covenants, to our wives and children, to our God
          and to our country; it will pay us to be faithful to the end.
          I pray God that this may be our lot, that we may be true and
          faithful unto death, and inherit eternal life, for Jesus' sake.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 / George
          Teasdale, January 13th, 1884
                         George Teasdale, January 13th, 1884
                   Delivered in the Assembly Hall, Salt Lake City,
                        Sunday Afternoon, January 13th, 1884.
                             (Reported by John Irvine.)
                                 ORGANIZATION OF THE
                                     PREACH THE
          I likewise can bear my testimony to the truth of this work that
          the world please to call Mormonism. The "Mormon" problem" is very
          easily defined if we consider the pretensions of the people
          called "Mormons." From the time that Joseph Smith first declared
          that he had had a vision of the Father and the Son--from that
          time to the present, I know that the world have never been able
          to prove that his testimony was false. I know that they have
          never been able to prove that Moroni did not give to him the
          plates of gold, or that the translation called the Book of Mormon
          is false. I know that they have never been able to prove that
          John the Baptist did not visit Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery,
          and confer upon them the Holy Priesthood, even the Aaronic
          Priesthood; neither have I ever heard that it has been proved
          that the Melchizedek Priesthood and Apostleship were not restored
          by Peter, James and John. There has been a great deal said about
          Mormonism; quite a number of books written upon the subject; a
          great deal of derision has been made of it; but the testimony of
          the Latter-day Saints has never been proven to be false.
          We have declared to the world that God has spoken from the
          heavens; that angels have appeared to the children of men; and
          that the keys of the Priesthood and intelligence have been
          restored to the earth--and we know it. We have invited the people
          to search the Scriptures to see if these things were not
          predicted--to find out if it had not been declared therein that
          it should come to pass in the last days that the God of heaven
          would establish His Kingdom upon the earth. There had to be a
          commencement. We read in the Bible that God set in the Church
          firstly Apostles, then Prophets, then Evangelists, and Teachers,
          for the work of the ministry and for the edifying of the body of
          Christ. Paul declared that the Saints were the body of Christ,
          members in particular, and he bore the same testimony to the
          Corinthians that he bore to the Ephesians, concerning the fact
          that God had set in the Church firstly Apostles, then Prophets,
          etc. Might I ask where the revelation is that at any time set in
          the Church firstly Popes, then Cardinals, Archbishops, and Right
          Reverend Fathers in God? Might I ask where the revelation is
          authorizing the establishment of the Episcopal Church? Might I
          ask where the revelation is authorizing the alternation of the
          order of government which God had set in the Church? We are
          calmly told that these things are done away with. Who says so?
          Men whose business it is to try and prevent people from thinking
          for themselves, and to do the thinking for them. But as a
          responsible being I am bound to do my own thinking; and when it
          comes to a question of my eternal welfare, I take the liberty to
          think for myself. I am told that holy men of old wrote and spoke
          as they were moved upon by the Holy Ghost, and that the
          Scriptures were not to be understood by private interpretation. I
          believe as a child of God, that I have a right to receive
          intelligence, for it was predicted ages ago that God would give
          to those who loved Him line upon line, precept upon precept, here
          a little and there a little, until they were perfected. The
          object of the Apostleship was the edification of the Saints. Now,
          I can understand the value of this Apostleship. Those who hold it
          are to be taught by the revelations of God, and have authority to
          call upon men everywhere to repent, to believe in the living and
          true God, to cease from their heresies, to cease from their
          wickedness and abominations, to lead perfect and pure lives, and
          to give them the privilege of being baptized by immersion for the
          remission of sins, and to have hands laid upon them, that they
          may receive the Hold Ghost. This, we are given to understand by
          the historians, was the manner in which the Kingdom of God was
          established in the days of the Savior, and if it had remained
          upon the earth there would have been a continuation of the
          When Jesus said, "It is finished," He did not give us to
          understand that the whole work was finished so far as we were
          concerned as individuals; because the last instructions that He
          gave to His Apostles, as recorded by the historian, Mark, and
          which were given after His crucifixion and resurrection were: "Go
          ye into all the world, and preach the Gospel to every creature.
          He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that
          believeth not shall be damned. And these signs shall follow them
          that believe; in my name 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 hurt them; they shall lay
          hands on the sick and they shall recover." And we are told that
          the Apostles went and preached this doctrine; called upon men
          everywhere to repent of their sins, called upon them to repent of
          their false modes and manner of worship. They preached exclusive
          salvation. They had the only way to be saved. This was what
          rendered them so unpopular. This is what renders us so unpopular
          today. But if we preach the same doctrine, if we have similar
          power, if God has spoken from the heavens and has declared to His
          children the necessity of their repentance, and has chosen men to
          hold the Priesthood, and go forth to the nations of the earth; if
          this is the case, where will the wicked and ungodly be? I think,
          myself, it should be a matter of interest to al classes of
          people, especially rulers, to make themselves acquainted with the
          doctrines of the Latter-day Saints, with the principles which
          they teach, so that they may act in wisdom. They have to give an
          account of the deeds done in the body; they will have to stand
          before the bar of God; their record will be there; and I say it
          is to the individual interest of every man, whether he is a king
          or a beggar, to make his record of such a character that he will
          dare to meet it; because as sure as we live to-day, we shall have
          to face the record we make upon earth.
          Now, why should so much fault be found with the Latter-day
          Saints? Right here, I would ask, why should so much fault have
          been found with the Lord Jesus Christ? Why should so much fault
          have been found with the Apostles and their followers? Why did
          they not, when they found it was distasteful to the majority of
          the people, give up their belief and become one with them, as we
          are kindly invited to do? Why did they not, in the midst of their
          persecutions--when they were being torn to pieces by wild beasts,
          etc.,--rise up and way: "Will it not be better, seeing our
          religion is so distasteful to mankind, to stop our mode of
          worship, and worship with the majority?" Why, they never dreamed
          of such a thing. I have never heard of a faithful man that ever
          lived who dreamed of such a thing as giving up that which he
          believed to be true for the sake of the approbation even of
          millions. Joseph Smith, the Prophet, Seer and Revelator, stood
          alone and declared that God had spoken from the heavens, and when
          people believed his testimony, when they accepted the doctrines
          he taught, God bore witness to them that he was a true Prophet.
          They discovered that the doctrine which he taught was that which
          was taught anciently; they discovered by the revelations of the
          Lord Jesus Christ, that in the last days the Kingdom of God was
          to be established upon the earth; and in their simplicity they
          believed that it had to be commenced with a few; and that it had
          to commence wherever the Great Eternal determined that it should
          commence. He revealed Himself that He might have a testator on
          the earth who knew that He lived, who knew that Jesus was the
          Christ. He revealed Himself to the boy Joseph Smith, who had
          sought Him in perfect faith. And, then, in order that the world
          might be left without excuse, when He sent the angel Moroni to
          reveal the history of the house of Jacob on this continent, He
          did not leave the fact of his visit dependent upon the testimony
          of one man. Others were privileged to receive the visits of
          heavenly messengers, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses,
          every word should be established. When did the three
          witnesses--Oliver Cowdery, David ),C], and Martin Harris--ever
          declare otherwise than that they saw an angel, and that they
          heard the voice of God declare that the book called the Book of
          Mormon, had been translated by the power of God? They were never
          known--though they left the Church--to have flinched from that
          testimony, and their testimony is as good as the testimony of any
          body else. It never has been impeached. And then again: Oliver
          Cowdery and Joseph Smith both declared that John the Baptist came
          and laid his hands upon their heads and ordained them to the
          Aaronic Priesthood. Who had any idea that there was any necessity
          for John the Baptist to come? Where there any records to that
          effect? And yet we are told emphatically that John The Baptist
          was the forerunner of Christ. But the world contend that he
          filled his mission as the forerunner of Christ in His first
          coming. I will take the privilege of questioning that, if you
          please, and will tell you why I do so. By referring to the 40th
          chapter of Isaiah, we were find these words: "Comfort ye, comfort
          ye my people, saith your God. Speak ye comfortably to Jerusalem,
          and cry unto her, that her warfare is accomplished, that her
          iniquity is pardoned: for she hath received the Lord's hand
          double for all her sins." It then goes on to say: "The voice of
          him that crieth in the wilderness, prepare ye the way of the
          Lord, make strait in the desert a highway for our God. Every
          valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be
          made low." Now, when John the Baptist came, did he speak
          comforting words to Jerusalem? When the Priests and
          Pharisees--those professedly holy men--came to him to be baptized
          in Jordan, what did he say to them? "O generation of vipers, who
          hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bring forth
          fruits met for repentance, etc." He was the forerunner of Christ.
          He declared so himself. The Lord Jesus bore testimony of him. He
          said: "This is he of whom it is written, Behold, I send my
          messenger before they face, which shall prepare the way before
          thee." Now, it is true that John the Baptist came as the
          forerunner of Jesus; it is true that he filled his mission so
          far; but we know very well that the people generally did not
          receive him, and ultimately they beheaded him. We know that they
          did not receive Jesus. They crucified Him. Instead of speaking
          comforting words to Jerusalem, he exclaimed: "O Jerusalem,
          Jerusalem, thou that killest the Prophets, and stoneth them which
          are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children
          together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings,
          and ye would not! Behold, your house is left unto you desolate.
          Were these comforting words to Jerusalem? I think not. It is very
          evident that John the Baptist was not only the forerunner of his
          first coming, but also of his second advent. The Scriptures are
          plain on this matter.
          But let us follow the history of the Apostles, and what do we
          find? Martyrdom for every one of them, John the Revelator alone
          excepted. What do we find concerning the Saints? Cruel
          persecution and death, until, in consequence of the awful crime
          of the shedding of innocent blood, God in His displeasure
          withdrew the Priesthood from the earth, and left it as it was
          before the coming of the Messiah, without divine authority. Was
          this state of things predicted? Most assuredly it was predicted
          by the Prophets of old. It was foretold by Paul, who declared
          that after his departure grievous wolves would enter in among the
          flocks and destroy them. He also beseeches the Thessalonians not
          to be soon shaken, or troubled, in regard to the day of Christ
          being at hand. He told them not to be deceived by any means: "for
          that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first."
          Has there been a falling away? Why, the prediction is verified by
          every sect in Christendom, when they calmly tell us that the
          spiritual gifts of the Gospel have been done away with, and that
          they are no longer needed. I argue that it is just as necessary
          to-day-- if God is an unchangeable God, if He is the same
          yesterday, to-day and forever--that we should enjoy the spiritual
          gifts of the Gospel as in former days, above all the fellowship
          of the Holy Ghost, the spirit of truth by which I may comprehend
          the relationship that exists between me as an individual here
          upon the earth and my Father who is in heaven. By carefully
          reading the revelations of St. John, you will find the apostasy
          foretold. You will find the Church represented as a woman
          surrounded by twelve stars. You will also find the history of the
          bringing forth of the Priesthood, and of the woman going into the
          wilderness for a season. You will also find the history of the
          establishment of the church of Satan--which is likewise
          represented by a woman sitting upon a scarlet colored beast; she
          was proclaimed the Mother of Harlots--a church that was to hold
          dominion over all the nations of the earth. John also saw the
          restoration of the everlasting Gospel, as proclaimed in
          Revelations, 14th chapter and 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 nation,
          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 mae heaven and earth, and the sea, and
          the fountains of water." Now, if the Gospel was upon the earth,
          there certainly would be no necessity of an angel bringing the
          Gospel; there would be no necessity for the restoration of any
          thing that had not been lost. But seeing that this order of
          government had been lost--this order of Priesthood-this authority
          which was given unto the ancient Apostles--it was absolutely
          essential that it should be restores, otherwise how could the
          Gospel of the Kingdom be preached in all the world for a witness
          before the second advent of the Lord Jesus Christ? For Christ
          Himself declared: "This Gospel of the Kingdom shall be preached
          in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall
          the end come."
          Now, is it not tidings of great joy to learn that God has spoken
          from the heavens; to know that there are men upon the earth who
          have authority to preach the Gospel; to know that we can receive
          a remission of our sins, that we can be made clean, and that we
          can be taught the ways of the Lord, that we may walk in his
          paths? Is not this tidings of great joy when we think of the
          confusion and ignorance that exists in the world to-day? To all
          reasoning men it must be a source of great consolation. I know it
          is a cause of great joy to me to know that the Apostleship has
          been restored, to know that these principles are true and
          faithful; that God is the same yesterday, to-day and forever,
          when faith is manifested; that the signs follow the believer
          according to his faith; and that all who do the will of the
          Father are most assuredly put in the possession of the knowledge
          that the principles that were taught by the Messiah and His
          Apostles are true.
          Since I last had the privilege of bearing my testimony from this
          stand, I have visited the temple of God at St. George, and spent
          a season there, and I want to bear my testimony to the truth of
          the doctrine of baptism for the dead. When Paul was arguing with
          the Corinthians, some of them were foolish enough to contend that
          there was no resurrection; they had believed, had been baptized,
          and they had been a certain portion of time in the Church; but
          their traditions and their lack of understanding caused them to
          believe that there was no such thing as the resurrection. Paul,
          in his argument, made use of the following language: "Else what
          shall they do which are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise
          not at all? Why are they then baptized for the dead?" Do you know
          why the ancient Saints were baptized for the dead, and do you
          know why Paul used this argument when they were disputing this
          principle of the resurrection? We do, for God has revealed it. He
          says: "Why stand we in jeopardy every hour? If after the manner
          of men I have fought with beasts at Ephesus, what advantageth it
          me, if the dead rise not? Let us eat and drink; for t-morrow we
          die." Now, don't you think it would have been wise i Paul to have
          taken the advice that some of our friends pretend to give us?
          Don't you think it would have been wise in Paul, when he stood in
          jeopardy every day, to give up those principles which rendered
          him so unpopular among the people? The same question is
          propounded to us to-day. People say, "Give up your religion; it
          is unpopular; we don't like it, and we are fifty millions strong.
          We want you to please do as we do, say as we say, and be as we
          are." But in order to make the thing not quite so glaring--not
          quite so gross an injustice--they say, "Will you please give up
          your plural marriage and do as we do? If you must have a
          plurality of women, marry one and keep the others and raise
          illegitimate children as we do." That is the English of it. It
          may be distasteful to tell so much truth in one afternoon; but
          that is the English of it. I have traveled in a few of the
          nations of the earth; I have seen some of their finest cities;
          and I have seen the effects of the workings of what is termed
          high Christian civilization.
          But before referring to this allow me to go back a little with
          regard to the pretensions of Joseph Smith; because this is the
          "Mormon" problem; "it lies in a nutshell." Joseph Smith was a
          true Prophet sent of God, or he was not. He held the keys and
          powers of the Priesthood, or he did not. These he conferred upon
          other men in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
          before his death. Now, those upon whom he conferred these keys
          have the Apostleship, or they have not; they have the authority
          of God, or they have not; they hold the keys of the Priesthood,
          or they do not; God our Eternal Father, reveals His mind and will
          from the heavens to His children in these valleys of the Rocky
          Mountains, or He does not. We testify He does.
          Without quoting any more Scripture, let us reason together a
          little while. Who knew of the necessity of the Aaronic and
          Melchizedek Priesthood? Joseph Smith had a vision of the Father
          and the Son. Who ever conceived of the necessity of such a
          vision? There was an absence of the knowledge of God. The world
          by wisdom know not God. The being that is worshipped by so-called
          Christianity, is a being without a body, parts or passions. In
          order that He might have a testator upon the earth, God revealed
          Himself, so that we might understand a little concerning the
          personality of God; as it is written, we are created in His
          image. Then the Book of Mormon was brought forth. Jesus Christ
          declared, "other sheep I have which are not of this fold." Those
          "other sheep" had to be visited; and the Book of Mormon gives us
          a history of Christ's visit to them--the aborigines of this
          continent, called the American Indians, but really the
          descendants of Jacob. We have given unto us within the lids of
          this book (Book of Mormon) the fullness of the everlasting
          Gospel. We have the principles of the Gospel laid down in their
          simplicity--plainer by far than in the Bible, though agreeing
          with that sacred record. It is in reality the stick of Judah that
          is contained in the Bible; the stick of Ephraim is contained in
          the Book of Mormon. Isaiah prophesied concerning the coming forth
          of this book. In fact the writings of the Prophets are pregnant
          with predictions concerning the establishment of the Kingdom of
          God in the latter days.
          Joseph Smith declared that John the Baptist came and restored the
          Aaronic Priesthood, and also that Peter, James and John restored
          the Apostleship, and the keys and powers thereof. Please tell me
          who it was that put it into the heart of this so called impostor
          (Joseph Smith) regarding the coming forth of this book? Will you
          please tell me where he acquired the wisdom to concoct such a
          record? Who taught Joseph Smith the necessity of the Aaronic and
          Melchizedek Priesthoods? Who taught Joseph Smith the perfect
          system of the organization of the Church of Jesus Christ of
          Latter-day Saints? Who taught him the necessity of three High
          Priests presiding over the Church of Christ like unto Peter,
          James and John? Who taught him the necessity of the Quorum of the
          Twelve Apostles, and of their powers and duties and the
          presidency thereof? Who taught him the necessity of the High
          Priesthood in their presiding? Who taught him the necessity of
          the Seventies and their organization/ Who taught him the
          necessity of the Elders' Quorum, the Priests' Quorum, and
          Teacher's Quorum, and the Deacons' Quorum? Who taught him the
          organization of the Stakes of Zion with their presidency, their
          High Council, their Bishops, Teachers, etc? Who taught him the
          necessity of baptism by immersion for the remission of sins, and
          the laying on of hands for the reception of the Holy Ghost? Who
          taught him the necessity of holding keys of Priesthood, and that
          God would reveal principles through this channel that had been
          hidden from before the foundation of the world? Who taught him of
          the pre-existence of the spirit of man? Who taught him the
          philosophy of our probation upon the earth, and the results that
          would flow from a faithful observance of the principles of
          righteousness? He declared that Jesus Christ taught him; he
          declared that all these things were received through the
          revelations of the Lord Jesus Christ to him. When people say that
          Joseph Smith was an impostor, they make him one of the greatest
          men that ever lived in view of the religion he founded. Again,
          who taught him the necessity of marriage for eternity? Who taught
          him the doctrine of baptism for the dead? Who taught him the
          principles of the resurrection and eternal judgment, as described
          in this Book of Doctrine and Covenants? I answer, God the Eternal
          Now, will you please tell me why the world are so embittered
          against us as a people? I will tell you. It is upon the same
          principle that they were embittered against the Messiah. The
          Messiah came with His bowels filled with compassion and love for
          the human family. He taught them how to be saved to the
          uttermost. He taught them exclusive salvation. Joseph Smith was a
          servant of the Lord Jesus Christ, and acted under His
          instructions. His life and works boldly tell that he was no
          impostor. He was, indeed and of a truth, a true Prophet of God.
          He declared the principles of eternal life, and those principles
          have been carried to the nations of the earth. What has followed
          the preaching of the Gospel? Judgment, calamity an desolation
          have come, in many instances, upon those who have rejected it;
          upon those who have cast us out and spurned the message of life
          and salvation: for it has been decreed by the Almighty. The hour
          of His judgment has come. You take this large congregation. If
          they had the opportunity of testifying, they would declare in
          words of soberness that God has revealed to them the principles
          of the Gospel, and that it was for that reason that they left the
          States, the islands of the sea, the nations of Europe, and came
          to this country; it was because they received a knowledge that
          these principles were true. They had been impressed by His Spirit
          to gather here; it is the gathering of Israel. In doing this they
          were told by their friends that they were deceived; but I ask any
          man who has accepted these principles, who has practiced them in
          solid faith, if he has ever been deceived? Never, no never. God
          has been true to His word. He has done His part. He has placed us
          in the possession of a knowledge of these principles. He has
          brought us home to Zion from the various nations where we were
          scattered. He has taught us the principles of righteousness
          through His appointed channel, by His Holy Spirit, and woe be
          unto us if we harden our hearts and close our ears against the
          pleadings of the Holy Ghost. We should sanctify ourselves before
          the Lord, and live holy and pure lives. We are living in the last
          days. We have no time to trifle. We are in the midst of the
          judgments of Almighty God. He has declared that desolation should
          cover the earth, and that He would waste the inhabitants away who
          would not listen to His voice. How can the Latter-day Saints
          escape if they neglect so great a salvation? We are called upon
          to be ministers of righteousness. We are building temples. We
          have no right in those temples unless we can go in as saviors
          upon Mount Zion. We never can be upon Mount Zion unless we save
          ourselves from this untoward generation. We must practice the
          principles of righteousness. We must give up our follies, our
          light speeches, our loud laughter and our inhuman feeling with
          regard to our children--placing them in a position where they are
          under the dominion of Belial, and under the influence that would
          wean them from the principles of righteousness. We must repent of
          our sins. We must listen to the voice of God through His
          servants. We must sanctify ourselves before Him or we cannot
          assist Him in the establishment of His righteousness upon the
          earth. You know this as well as I do. What right have I to
          require of anybody what I will not do myself. What right have I
          to expect of anybody what I do not do myself? No, we must save
          ourselves. We must make our calling and election sure. Who is
          afraid to die but the sinner? Who is afraid of death but those
          who have sinned and who dread to meet the consequence of those
          sins behind the veil? But those who love the principles of
          righteousness and who practice them know that they have passed
          from death unto life. They know that they are redeemed through
          the precious blood of the Redeemer. When they pass into the
          spirit world it is not in blindness. They know that they are
          going into the presence of the Lamb, and the Church of the First
          Born. They know that they belong to that Church, and they also
          know whether they have kept their garments clean or not. Have we
          any occasion to fear the people? Have we any occasion to fear
          nations? Do we fear when we go forth in the their midst,
          traveling one or two at a time in the midst of our enemies with
          threatenings on every hand? Do we fear under those circumstances?
          No; and if we can trust ourselves in the hands of God, under
          those conditions, I think we can trust Him to-day. And as far as
          I am concerned as an individual, not one principle that God has
          revealed from the heavens do I dare to go back on--not one
          principle. I believe in the fullness of the everlasting Gospel. I
          believe in plural marriage as a part of the Gospel, just as much
          as I believe in baptism by immersion for the remission of sins.
          The same Being who taught me baptism for the remission of sins,
          taught me plural marriage, and its necessity and glory. Can I
          afford to give up a single principle? I can not. If I had to give
          up one principle I would have to give up my religion. If I gave
          up the first principle of the revelations of the Lord, I would
          prove before by brethren, before the angels, before God the
          Eternal Father, that I was unworthy the exaltation that He has
          promised me. I do not know how you feel; but I do not fear the
          face of man as I fear the face of God. I fear lest when I go
          behind the veil and have to meet my progenitors, that I should
          meet them as a traitor, as a man who had not the backbone to
          stand by the principles of righteousness for fear of my life; or
          for fear of some calamity that might come upon me. How would they
          look upon me? How we would be condemned if we dared suggest such
          a thing as to say that we would give up the first principle of
          eternal truth? I bear my solemn testimony that plural marriage is
          as true as any principle that has been revealed from the heavens.
          I bear my testimony that it is a necessity, and that the Church
          of Christ in its fullness never existed without it. Where you
          have the eternity of marriage you are bound to have plural
          marriage; bound to; and it is one of the marks of the Church of
          Jesus Christ in its sealing ordinances. "Whatever you bind on
          earth is bound in heaven." We know how sensitive the Prophet
          Joseph was to introduce this principle. He knew the feeling that
          was against it. It had been taught from the days of heathen Rome
          down to the present time that a man should have but one wife,
          which has resulted in the prostitution of many of the fair
          daughters of Eve as mistresses. Here we have too much love for
          women to see them trampled in the dust. Here we have too much
          respect for unborn spirits to have them come into the world
          branded as bastards, illegitimate, in shame, without knowing
          their fathers. The children we have are legitimate. They are our
          own. We honor them and our wives. Our children are given unto us
          of God, for our wives are given to us of God. We never should
          have thought of practicing this principle if God had not revealed
          it from the heavens and commanded it, and we must stand by it and
          by every principle that He has revealed. It is more than I dare,
          to go back on that principle or any other principle; and I have
          besought the Lord with all my heart that He would give me
          strength according to my day that I might never fail in my
          integrity, but that I might stand firm as the pillars of heaven
          to the truths that He has revealed for the redemption of the
          human family. I understand my own weaknesses; I understand my own
          insufficiency; but my trust is in the living and true God. And I
          have a testimony that for over thirty years He has sustained my
          through some very crooked and tight places by His Almighty power.
          He has stood by me, been my friend; and so far my testimony and
          my love for the principles of righteousness are as deep and
          earnest as my first love, and more so; for I have witnessed His
          loving kindness in the sealing powers and bonds of the
          everlasting covenant; I have been privileged to see the
          magnificent manner in which He has provided for His children, in
          placing them in a position that they may become like unto
          Him--eternal, without end of years.
          That God may give us grace to stand true and faithful to our
          covenants, and endure to the end, is my prayer in the name of
          Jesus Christ, Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 / George
          Q. Cannon, January 6th, 1884
                         George Q. Cannon, January 6th, 1884
                       DISCOURSE BY PRESIDENT GEO. Q. CANNON,
                   Delivered in the Assembly Hall, Salt Lake City,
                        Sunday Afternoon, January 6th, 1884.
                             (Reported by John Irvine.)
                                      THEY ARE
          The testimonies of the servants of God, which we hear so
          frequently from this stand, ought to make an impression upon the
          minds of those who hear them--they ought to have weight, for the
          reason that those who bear them declare in solemnity, in the
          presence of God, that they know that which they testify is true;
          and when a man, or any number of men, arise in the presence of
          their fellow men, and declare in words of truth and soberness,
          that certain things are true, that they know them to be true,
          that they are willing to bear testimony of them before God and
          the people, and to suffer all things for their truth, even to
          death itself, it should make an impression upon the human mind,
          and inspire that who hear these testimonies with a disposition to
          at least investigate and withhold their condemnation. Because,
          unless a man knows something to the contrary, unless he has had a
          testimony that these things are false, he is not justified in
          condemning them. There is only one way in which they can be
          fairly condemned, and that is by proving their falsity, by
          obtaining knowledge that is directly in contradiction to that
          which is borne testimony to. In this consists the condemnation of
          the inhabitants of the earth at the present time, as it has
          consisted in every age when God has had a work to do upon the
          earth. Certain men have gone forward in the midst of their fellow
          men, and in solemnity and in truth have testified that God has
          spoken, that God has given revelations, that God is doing a
          certain work in the earth of which they are the witnesses. They
          know this, they say, for themselves and bear testimony of it, and
          exhort their fellow men to seek for knowledge in the same manner
          in which they have sought for it, with an assurance that if they
          do so they will obtain knowledge. Now, notwithstanding men have
          done this, the world, without pretending to have any counter
          demonstration or testimony, without being able to disprove by the
          same sort of evidence, condemn wholesale, without discrimination
          or hesitation those testimonies and declare them to be false, and
          assert that the men who bear them are either deceived themselves
          or are striving to deceive somebody else.
          I do not think this is fair. It never was fair. It is not a
          proper method of dealing with affairs of this character; because
          if there is a God, and one man says he has had communication with
          Him, and another, who believes also, or professes to believe in
          God, denies that the first has had any such communication, and
          yet does not pretend that God told him any such thing, does not
          pretend to have had any communication from God--the contradiction
          of the one is not equal to the affirmation of the other. It is
          the height of presumption for a man who professes to believe in
          God, to rise up and at his own instance and of his own will,
          because he chooses to take that view of God, and of God's method
          of dealing with man, and declare that the testimony of the man
          who says he has had revelation from God is false. Why, anyone at
          a glance can see that it is an improper way to deal with the
          subject. If he does not have revelation himself from God, he
          should, at least, be modest in contradicting the testimony of
          others who declare that they have had revelation from Him. The
          whole religious world in Christendom profess to believe in God.
          They declare that God lives and are continually preaching to the
          people a belief in Him, a belief in Jesus, saying that Jesus is
          the Son of God, that He lived upon the earth in the flesh, that
          He has gone to the Father, and that they are His ministers,
          having power to do certain things in His name, and to teach His
          doctrines. They say to the people who do not listen to them: "You
          will be visited with the most terrible judgments if you do not
          believe what we say; you will go to hell, and you will burn there
          throughout the countless ages of eternity, if you do not believe
          what we tell you." Now, when men go to their fellow men and make
          such statements as these, and assume such prerogatives and powers
          as these, and say that their fellow men will be condemned by
          wholesale to eternal hell for not listening to them, they
          certainly ought to have some method of communicating with the
          Being they represent, and whose ministers they profess to be, and
          they ought to know more than other men--more than common men at
          least--about the Being who, they say, sends them as His
          ministers. But what are the facts? Here is Brother Woodruff, who
          for the last half century has been testifying, as he has this
          afternoon in your hearing, with all the energy of his soul--for
          he has been a very zealous man all his days--he has been
          testifying to all people to whom he could get access, that God
          has spoken from the heavens and restored the plan of salvation in
          its ancient purity, and the Church as it was organized upon the
          earth in the days of Jesus, with the plenitude of its gifts and
          powers and graces, and that this condition of things now exists
          upon the earth, and that he is a living witness of it; that God
          has really revealed this to him, so that he has become a witness
          through revelation from God, of its truth. He has declared this.
          Hundreds have made a similar declaration, and hundreds are still
          testifying concerning these things to the inhabitants of the
          earth. But Christendom through some of its principal
          representatives says: "We don't believe a word you say. We don't
          believe God has spoken to you. We don't believe God has given you
          any authority. We don't believe your doctrine to be from God. We
          don't believe that the church you have organized, and that you
          declare is the Church of Christ, is the Church of Christ; and so
          confident are we of that that we believe that it would be
          justifiable for you to be killed as a lot of impostors and
          dangerous men, and you ought to be broken up. If it should be
          necessary to do this, and it cannot be done any other way, we
          would be willing to have armies resort to violence and have
          bloodshed, rather than such a dreadful heresy and such a wicked
          system should be perpetuated on the earth."
          You turn to them--to these men who profess to have the fate of
          their fellow beings in their hands, whose efforts, as they state,
          will send millions to heaven and millions to hell--you ask these
          men who profess to have such awful powers as this--"By what
          authority do you make these statements? Has God given you any
          testimony that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is
          not the true Church? Has God told you anything about it?"
          "Oh, no," they will say, "God has not spoken to us. We do not
          believe He talks to anybody. We believe he has stopped all
          communication with man; that no living man has heard His voice,
          or knows anything about His mind and will."
          Now, this is their testimony. You cannot get any of them--at
          least I have not, and I speak so far as my own personal knowledge
          goes--to declare that God has revealed to them either by the
          spirit of prophecy or by the manifestations of the Holy Ghost,
          that the doctrines taught by the "Mormon" people are false, or
          that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is not of
          God, and yet, notwithstanding this, they take the course that I
          now describe. Here are men who say they have actually received
          revelations from God; that God has poured out the Holy Ghost upon
          men and women; that Jesus has actually visited the earth in
          person, and been seen by living men; and that angels have been
          seen and conversed with by living men. They state this in all
          solemnity and in all truth, and as a test of the sincerity of
          their statements, they say to their fellow men: "If you will take
          a certain course that God has pointed out, and that we are
          authorized to designate; if you will take this certain course,
          you shall know also of the truth of our testimony. We do not make
          these statements expecting you to receive them simply because we
          make them; but we say to you, if you will take this course, if
          you will accept the conditions which God has prescribed and
          comply with them in sincerity and humility, you shall receive
          these blessings and this testimony for yourselves, and you then
          will be numbered as witnesses with us."
          What can be fairer than this? And this is the course that the
          servants of God have always taken with mankind, and hence, as I
          have said, the condemnation of the inhabitants of the earth,
          because they will not receive that testimony. They abuse the
          Church of Christ without having reason or foundation for doing
          so; they abuse it without having any evidence that is at all
          tangible or that can be relied upon; they have nothing more than
          their personal feelings, personal prejudice, and their personal
          tradition--that which they have inherited from their
          fathers--upon which to base their opposition.
          Now, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has been
          built up in this manner. Its strength consists in this
          peculiarity: that those who have embraced it as a rule--there may
          be exceptions--have taken the course which has been taught by the
          servants of God and the result is that legions of witnesses have
          been raised up. It is not confined to one; it is not confined to
          the original few; but this testimony has extended itself, until
          it has brought within its fold men and women of almost every
          race; for it is not confined, happily, to sex no more than it is
          to nationality, but it is extended unto men of every race, and
          unto women of every race, and all these rise up as an army of
          witnesses, unanimously bearing testimony of the same great
          truths, declaring that it is not from their fathers, it is not
          from tradition, it is not from their teachers, it is not from any
          human source that they have derived their knowledge; but that God
          Himself, by His invisible power, by His superhuman power, by the
          outpouring of the Holy Ghost upon them, has borne testimony to
          them, so that they are thoroughly convinced and have a knowledge
          as strong as the knowledge that they themselves live, that this
          is the work of God, and He has established it, and that He will
          roll it forth and cause it to accomplish all that He has said it
          would. It is in this peculiarity that the strength of the people
          consists. If it was not for this we should be as weak as a rope
          of sand; there would be no cohesiveness or strength about us. But
          with this there is a power that makes hell tremble. It makes the
          Devil mad. It makes every man that is afraid of the truth angry
          in his spirit because of that which he sees. If men were not
          afraid of truth there would be no fear connected with this work.
          What is there about it to create fear? What is there in its
          manifestations, in its fruits, and in its operations upon the
          minds of the children of men to cause any man who loves truth to
          have any dread concerning it? Nothing whatever. It is beneficent
          in its operations. It elevates men and women; it makes them
          better, purer, more God-like, more orderly. It bestows
          blessings--this system does--upon all who espouse it, and all who
          come within the range of its influence. And this has been its
          characteristic ever since its organization until today. You know
          it, each of you who have espoused it. You know its effects upon
          you. You know it has made you better men. You know it has made
          you men of purer lives, of loftier desires, of more God-like
          aspirations. You all know this. Every man, every woman, and every
          child connected with this work is a witness of the truth of this.
          If it has this effect upon you, will it not have the same effect
          upon every human being who comes within the range of its
          influence and who bows in submission to its requirements?
          Certainly it will. There is no human being, however low, that it
          will not elevate, if he will obey it. It is the power and lever,
          so to speak, by which humanity will be elevated to the presence
          of God our Eternal Father, for the very reason that the
          exaltation which God has attained to, has been through obedience
          to these self-same laws that are now taught to us. That which
          obeyeth law is preserved and sanctified by law. The people who
          obey law will be exalted by law; they will be preserved by it,
          they will be sanctified by it; and that is the effect of the
          teaching of the Gospel upon the Latter-day Saints.
          While Brother Woodruff was talking, I thought what an immense
          labor it is to endeavor to accomplish that which the Prophets
          have told us will be brought to pass in the last days. I look at
          this people so comparatively few in numbers, and at the immense
          work that is to be accomplished, and it seems an herculean, an
          impossible labor to the natural vision. It seems as if no human
          beings could accomplish it. But God has spoken concerning this
          work. His word has gone forth and it cannot fail. This work will
          be accomplished, and it will be accomplished by the operation of
          truth. As Brother Woodruff has said, there is a power connected
          with truth, that when brought to bear upon human beings, has the
          effect that he has described, and has the effect that the
          Prophets have predicted concerning the last days. There will be a
          power exercised in our behalf, increasing as we are prepared to
          receive it; for this people with all their weaknesses, and they
          are many, are nevertheless drawing nearer and nearer to God every
          day, and faith is increasing in their midst. A generation of boys
          and girls are growing up who will have greater faith than their
          predecessors, their parents, have had, and the work will continue
          to grow and spread. And there is this to be taken into
          consideration, God having predicted the ushering in of the last
          dispensation, knowing the odds that would have to be contended
          with in establishing it: God knowing this has reserved in the
          heavens to come forth at this time the noblest of His spirits,
          the men and women most capable of carrying out this work, and
          achieving the grand results the Prophets have predicted should be
          accomplished in the day and generation, preparatory to the coming
          of the Son of Man. God knowing this, in His wisdom and
          foreknowledge has prepared the way beforehand, and there will be
          men and women brought forth who will carry off this work in the
          way He designs, step by step, the adversary of God, that is the
          adversary of all truth, will have to recede. The struggle is
          between Satan and God. The struggle is for the supremacy of this
          earth, and you may depend upon it, it will not be given up
          without a mighty wrestle. The adversary has wielded this power
          now for nearly 2,000 years--1,400 years and upwards on this
          continent. For this period he has held undisturbed sway, it may
          be said--that is, if not entirely true it is nearly true in
          saying it has been undisturbed. There have occasionally some
          persons arisen who have endeavored to stem the tide of wickedness
          that the devil has caused to flow over the earth; but there has
          been no Priesthood on the earth, no organized church, no
          organized power, through whom God could operate, and you may
          depend upon it, now that there is one, there will be a mighty
          struggle. It will cost the best efforts of which we are capable,
          to lay the foundation so successfully that it shall not be
          overturned, to prepare the way for the coming of the Lord Jesus
          Christ. Every kind of opposition will be brought against this
          work. There is nothing that you can conceive of that will be kept
          back, and it will come upon us as fast as we are able to bear it.
          It is only the power of God that restrains our enemies from
          overwhelming us. If it were not that God has said this shall not
          be, and has told us that He will establish this work never more
          to be thrown down, we would not be able to stand. But victory
          will perch upon our banners, and will do so until the end. But it
          will not be without a mighty warfare, the hostility against this
          work will be continuous. No man need calculate on anything else.
          Why, just think of the results that are to be wrought out. Just
          think of what depends upon our labors and upon this contest? We
          have been gathering the people from Babylon through the power of
          God to build up a Zion here. But see the results that attend our
          labors in this city and in this Territory. It seems as though all
          hell is endeavoring to defeat our object, and to defeat the cause
          of God in gathering the people out from the nations of the earth.
          The adversary has said:
          "You shall not have a pure people; you shall not build up Zion; I
          will bring all my forces to bear against this; I will destroy the
          work of God; I will not allow the Priesthood of God to remain on
          the earth; I will kill them off, or I will do everything in my
          power to cripple them."
          Thus he brings every kind of influence to bear against this
          people. We would have a pure people here, we would have a Zion
          such as the Bible describes, if we were allowed; we would have a
          city in which angels might walk in the streets all day, if we
          could have our say; but Satan says: "You shall not. I will bring
          every power and influence to bear against you. I will besmear you
          in every way I can, and will make you so hateful in the eyes of
          all people, that they will come up against and destroy you. You
          shall not build up Zion, if I can prevent it."
          And you see the result. Every power that is conceivable is
          brought to bear against us. We are maligned. We are represented
          as everything that is vile. Men think that in killing us they
          will be doing God service; not because of our wickedness, but
          because they believe we were wicked, because the adversary has
          had such power through falsehood and misrepresentation, that men
          believe that they will be doing God Service in exterminating us
          from the face of the earth. And what is it that restrains the
          efforts of our enemies? It is the power of God only. We should be
          overwhelmed if it were not for this invisible agency--invisible
          to us. There are legions of angels around us. Their power is
          exerted in our behalf, and the results we can see in the
          deliverances which are wrought out so miraculously for our good.
          It is a cause of amazement how we are delivered from time to
          time, so few in numbers, and so hated as we are. Our friends are
          filled with astonishment. Every few days, every few weeks, or
          every few months, they think that something is going to occur,
          that will cause our destruction--I mean friends who have not the
          faith and the knowledge that we have. But this work of our God
          will go forth, despite all the opposition that will be brought
          against it. It will win, because it is true. As we have been told
          by Brother Woodruff, the eternal principles of truth are on the
          earth now in an organized form, and you cannot kill them unless
          you kill the people themselves. There is no way to stop this
          work, except by the extirpation of the "Mormons," or Latter-day
          Saints, root and branch! No other method can destroy them but
          that, and God will not permit it. His Priesthood is on the earth,
          and it will remain on the earth. You may kill off a few, still
          the Priesthood will remain, and it will exercise power in the
          earth. It will unite the people, an the power of God will attend
          its administration in the midst of the people. The honest will
          receive the Holy Ghost, they will have a knowledge of this work
          for themselves, and they will be ready to endure all the
          consequences that may attend the espousal of the truth, just as
          their predecessors have done in times that are past and in our
          own age. God will bless us if we seek to do His will. Remember,
          my brethren and sisters, that that which obeys law is preserved
          and sanctified by law. If you want to escape evils, obey the law
          that God has revealed. Keep His commandments. There is safety in
          this. It is a great work we are engaged in. The desire I have for
          every man and women of this Church is, that they may be true, and
          that their children may live to be true to God in days to come;
          for we are laying the foundation of a work that shall stand
          undisturbed for one thousand years. Then, in the purposes of God,
          Satan will be loosed again for a little season, but it will only
          be for a little while. We are engaged in laying the foundations
          of that work. It is the most glorious work that could be
          committed to man. Angels delight in it, and we have the precious
          privilege of taking part in it. We have difficulties to contend
          with, but let them come. We will meet them, and what is better
          still, we will overcome them through God's help, and our children
          will enjoy the blessings of liberty. I trust and pray that of
          this people who have fought so valiantly, and whose desires for
          the success of God's Kingdom are so pure, there will be found men
          and women of their descent, who so long as time shall last, shall
          stand up possessed of the Holy Priesthood in the presence of God,
          to magnify it. This is my desire for myself, it is my desire for
          my family, it is my desire for my brethren and sisters throughout
          the Kingdom of God; and that God may grant that we may be exalted
          in His presence when our work is done, it my prayer in the name
          of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 /
          Erastus Snow, February 2nd, 1884
                          Erastus Snow, February 2nd, 1884
                          DISCOURSE BY APOSTLE ERASTUS SNOW,
                         Delivered in the Tabernacle, Logan,
                       Saturday Afternoon, February 2nd, 1884.
                              Reported by John Irvine.
                                     BUILT, AND
                                    COMING UNTIL
                                     AND BEHIND
                                    JOSEPH SMITH
          I am asked to speak, but I feel in attempting to do so that my
          speech will be barren unless the Lord is pleased to inspire my
          mind by the Holy Spirit. I know there is faith in the hearts of
          the people and the Lord is able to give words of edification and
          comfort. I am not, however, impressed with anything in
          particular, in the way of doctrine, to speak to my brethren and
          sisters; I have only a feeling to exhort in general terms.
          The Latter-day Saints realize as I do that every year brings us
          nearer to the coming of our Lord; that every month and week and
          day that passes over our heads, brings us nearer to the great and
          important events that must transpire, and that it does not become
          us to give way to a feeling of apathy and indifference, and to
          say in our hearts, "The Lord delayeth His coming," and that
          to-morrow will be as this day and much more abundant, and that
          the next generation will be like the present, and as the world
          has continued to roll on, as generations have come and
          generations have gone, so will it be with us and our children. I
          say it does not become us to give way to these sentiments and
          feelings which are common with unbelievers, with the world, or
          with the unenlightened, who have not a knowledge of God, who have
          not been favored with the light of revelation, who have not
          discerned the signs of the times; for we are not the children of
          darkness, but the children of light. Light has come unto us. We
          have been called out of darkness unto light. We have been
          translated from the kingdom of darkness unto the kingdom of God's
          dear Son, and therefore it may and ought to be said of us as
          Saint Paul said concerning the Saints: "Ye, brethren are not in
          darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief." It is
          written and we expect it to be fulfilled upon the heads of the
          unbelieving and the wicked, that the Lord will overtake them as a
          thief in the night. "In such an hour," said the Savior, "as ye
          think not, the Son of man cometh. Who then is a faithful and wise
          servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to
          give them meat in due season? Blessed is that servant, whom his
          lord when he cometh shall find so doing. Verily I say unto you,
          that he shall make him ruler over all his goods. But, and if that
          evil servant shall say in his heart, my lord delayeth his coming,
          and shall begin to smite his fellow servants, and to eat and
          drink with the drunken; the lord of that servant shall come in a
          day when he looketh not for him, and in an hour that he is not
          aware of, and shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion
          with the hypocrites." Now, it is not impossible, nor yet
          improbable, that there will be some among the Latter-day Saints
          who are called of God and appointed to this work, and who are set
          over their fellow-servants to give them meat in due season, who
          will be found negligent, who will have forgotten their high and
          holy calling, who will have laid off their armor of
          righteousness, who will have become slothful and weary in well
          doing, and who will have taken to eating and drinking with the
          drunken and smiting their fellow-servants; but as surely as any
          such are found among the servants of God, they will be overtaken
          when the day of the Lord cometh, and their portion will be
          appointed with hypocrites and unbelievers. But we hope better
          things of the Elders of Israel, of Presidents of Stakes, of
          Bishops, of High Counselors, of High Priests, of Seventies, of
          Priests, Teachers and Deacons, and of all the Latter-day Saints;
          for we have all been made partakers of this Priesthood, and the
          blessings of the Lord, directly or indirectly, have been
          conferred upon us.
          The work before us is a great one, and very much remaineth to be
          accomplished according to the prophecies--Israel is to be
          gathered, Jerusalem rebuilt, Zion established, the vineyard of
          the Lord pruned and the corrupt branches cut off and cast into
          the fire, while the good branches shall be grafted in and partake
          of the root and fatness of the tame olive tree. There is a great
          work to be accomplished in the earth. But the Lord has said by
          the mouth of His servants that He will cut His work short in
          righteousness in building up His Kingdom in the latter-days.
          True, when the Lord speaketh He does not reckon time as we do.
          The time was, in the infancy of this Church, when our minds were
          so narrow compared to what they are now, that we looked for the
          speedy coming of our Lord, and the accomplishment of His great
          work before this time. But as our minds grew, and our ideas
          enlarged, we began to perceive that we were only children in our
          views and feelings, our ideas and expectations. We have the
          views, ideas and expectations of children; and we see how the
          Lord has enlarged Israel and expanded His work; and now we behold
          so much more to be accomplished than what has been accomplished,
          that we are apt in our minds to put off the day of the Lord a
          great way. The time was that we looked for one temple. The early
          revelations given to the Latter-day Saints predicted a temple in
          Zion, and Zion in our minds at that time was a little place on
          the Missouri River in Jackson County, Western Missouri--a town
          and a few surrounding villages, or a country, peradventure it may
          be as large as a county. When we first heard the fullness of the
          Gospel preached by the first Elders, and read the revelations
          given through the Prophet Joseph Smith, our ideas of Zion were
          very limited. But as our minds began to grow and expand, why we
          began to look upon Zion as a great people, and the Stakes of Zion
          as numerous, and the area of the country to be inhabited by the
          people of Zion as this great American continent, or at least such
          portions of it as the Lord should consecrate for the gathering of
          His people. We ceased to set bounds to Zion and her Stakes. We
          began also to cease to think about a single temple in one certain
          place. Seeing the different Stakes of Zion that were being
          organized we perceived the idea, possibly, of as many temples.
          Having had one spot pointed out in the revelations for the temple
          in Jackson County, our minds expanded so that in a short time we
          were building another temple in a Stake of Zion in Kirtland,
          Ohio. A little while afterwards we were laying the foundation of
          a temple in Far West, Missouri, and driven before our enemies;
          from that place we next laid the foundation and built up a temple
          unto the Lord in Nauvoo. When we located in the mountains and
          laid the foundation of a temple in Salt Lake City, who of us had
          an idea that before it should be completed we would be
          administering in a temple in St. George, and another in Logan,
          and another in Manti, and who conceives the idea to-day, that by
          the time these are completed and the Saints have officiated in
          them, we will be scattered over the American continent, building
          temples in a hundred other places? All this comes within the
          range of possibility, nay, probability, almost amounting to
          certainty. One of my brethren behind me here, who understands
          these things, and who can speak knowingly in regard to them,
          says, that we may put it down as a certainty, that by and by,
          there will be hundreds of these temples throughout the land. Our
          minds are beginning to comprehend the object and purpose of the
          temples of our god. We realize that they are places where the
          Lord bestows the keys of life and salvation pertaining to the
          everlasting Priesthood, and opens the door of redemption and
          salvation unto our dead. We begin to comprehend a little of the
          vision shown to Ezekiel, as recorded in the 37th chapter of his
          book. Ezekiel, while under the influence of the Spirit of the
          Lord, was set down in the midst of the valley which was full of
          bones. He explored the valley, saw there were very many bones,
          and, lo, they were very dry. The Lord commanded him to prophesy
          concerning them, and he prophesied, saying: "O ye dry bones, hear
          the word of the Lord. Thus saith the Lord God unto these bones:
          Behold, I will cause breath to enter into you, and ye shall live:
          and I will lay sinews upon you, and will bring up flesh upon you,
          and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and ye shall
          live; and ye shall know that I am the Lord. * * * And the breath
          came unto them and they lived, and stood up upon their feet, an
          exceeding great army. Then He said unto me, Son of man, these
          bones are the whole house of Israel: behold, they say, Our bones
          are dry, and our hope is lost: we are cut off for our parts."
          Now, these were not the prophets and saints and righteous dead
          who had been partakers of the blessings of the Gospel and of the
          Priesthood, while in the flesh, but were those who had passed off
          in a day of darkness, and in their lost condition said to one
          another, and said in their hearts, "Our bones are dried, and our
          hope is lost: we are cut off for our parts." But lo! the plan of
          salvation for the dead is revealed. The scheme which the Father
          had provided for the redemption of those whose hope was lost, and
          who were cut off is revealed unto their children, unto those who
          have been gathered from their long dispersion, and who have
          received the keys of the Holy Priesthood, which bringeth life and
          salvation to the dead as well as to the living. Having these keys
          committed unto us, we proceed to establish Zion; to build up her
          Stakes; to build her temples; to gather together those who purify
          themselves before the Lord, and qualify and fit themselves to
          become saviors upon Mount Zion, by entering into holy places and
          officiating for themselves and their dead, thus laying the
          foundation for the redemption of the dead in being baptized for
          them, in being ordained for them, in being blessed and endowed
          for them, in receiving the keys and the key-words for them, that
          in the day when the Elders who have passed behind the veil shall
          preach to them the Gospel of glad tidings of great joy, lo and
          behold! they will receive it and will be put in possession of
          those keys, endowments and blessings, whereby they may be freed
          from their prison houses, and be raised from the dead, and stand
          upon their feet an exceeding great army, and be restored to the
          blessings which God promised to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and
          their seed after them.
          Now, this is the work before us, and I want to ask my brethren,
          the Elders of Israel, how long shall we be in accomplishing this
          work? Can I tell you? No, it is not given me to know. It is
          sufficient for us to know that the time has come for the work to
          be done: that the Lord has turned the key and opened the door;
          that it is an effectual door which no man can shut--the door of
          life and salvation. Hence it is our duty to step forward and
          magnify the calling whereunto God has called us. Send out the
          young men of Israel; send out the middle aged; send out those who
          have not as yet cleared their garments of the blood of this
          generation to call the children of men to repentance, and to see
          how many will engage with us in this great work of salvation, and
          become saviors upon Mount Zion. But this preaching the Gospel to
          the outside world is a small part of the work. It is but the A B
          C of the lesson to be learned and the work to be accomplished.
          How long, I ask, shall we be in accomplishing this work? It is
          not, as I have said, given to me to know; but I can tell you in
          general terms. As long as there is one soul (of all the sons and
          daughters of Adam that have been born on this earth) that has not
          had an opportunity of receiving and obeying the Gospel; as long
          as there is one soul that is in a condition to be saved and that
          can be reached by this plan of salvation, so long will the
          Latter-day Saints be engaged in this work. But what I was going
          to bring before your minds was this: Shall we expect that the
          Lord Jesus is going to delay His coming in the midst of His
          people, until all this great work shall have been accomplished?
          By no means. I do not understand that He has ever intimated
          anything of this kind. Nor need we wait in our faith and in our
          expectations till all these great and glorious things shall have
          been accomplished on the earth before the Prophet Joseph Smith
          shall come unto us again. He has merely taken another mission in
          advance of us. He fulfilled the mission given unto him on earth.
          The Lord was satisfied with his labors here. He lived long enough
          to endow his brethren with full authority to carry on the work
          that he had begun on the earth. He took his departure behind the
          veil. The Lord suffered his enemies to destroy him in the flesh,
          to take away his life, and he was made an offering--what shall I
          say? an offering for sin. Not in the sense in which the Savior
          was offered, but he was made a martyr for the truth and his blood
          was shed to attest the testimony that he bore to the world. He
          entered upon another short mission. Where? Why, unto his brethren
          of the house of Israel, and as many of the Gentiles as will
          receive his testimony, behind the veil. The mission of our Lord
          and Savior Jesus Christ, between his death and resurrection was a
          similar mission, but a very short one. It lasted only three days.
          While his body lay in the tomb his spirit visited the spirits in
          prison, turned the key and opened the door of their prison house,
          and offered unto them the Gospel of salvation. How many of them
          were prepared to avail themselves of it at that time?
          Comparatively few. But he opened the door and offered the message
          of life and salvation, and having done this, His fellow
          laborers--the Seventies, Elders and others whom He ordained to
          the ministry--as fast as they finished their ministry in the
          flesh--continued their work among the spirits in prison. So is
          the Prophet Joseph Smith officiating and ministering to those
          spirits, and so are all His brethren, the Apostles, who have gone
          in his wake, who have followed, as it were, in his track. They
          have just gone behind the veil. Who shall we say? Let us call to
          mind a few of the brethren who have passed away--Brother David
          Patten (the first of the Apostles who was slain), Parley P.
          Pratt, Heber C. Kimball, Orson Hyde, Brigham Young, Orson Pratt,
          Charles C. Rich, and others of the Apostles; also Patriarchs
          Father Joseph Smith and Hyrum Smith; Elders Samuel H. Smith, Don
          Carlos Smith--all the first Elders of this Church and the
          Presidents of all the early quorums, and a vast company of the
          members of their quorums. All these and many more are laboring in
          the spirit world preparing the spirits thereof to receive the
          benefits and blessings which are now about to be offered to them
          in the temples of God. In other words, "a ticket of leave" is
          about to be sent to them to the effect that their friends on the
          earth have officiated in their behalf, have complied with the
          ordinances which are appointed for their redemption, which will
          enable them to advance into a higher sphere, to walk upon a
          higher plane, to enter a higher class where they can be further
          instructed and prepared for a glorious resurrection. And as fast
          as this work is accomplished--and it is nigh at hand, it is now
          even at our doors--there will be another step made in advance;
          there will be another mission undertaken. The next mission will
          be to come and prepare the way in Zion, and in her Stakes, and in
          the temples of our God for turning the key of the resurrection of
          the dead, to bring forth those that are asleep, and to exalt them
          among the Gods. And who will be first and foremost? Why, he whom
          God has chosen and placed first and foremost to hold the keys of
          this last dispensation. How long will it be? It is not given to
          me to say the month, the day, or the hour; but it is given unto
          me to say that that time is nigh at hand. The time is drawing
          near (much nearer than scarcely any of us can now comprehend)
          when Joseph will be clothed upon with immortality, when his
          brother Hyrum will be clothed upon with immortality, when the
          martyrs will be raised from the dead, together with their
          faithful brethren who have performed a good mission in the spirit
          world--they, too, will be called to assist in the work of the
          glorious resurrection. The Lord Jesus, who was the first fruits
          of the dead, the first fruit of them that sleep, and who holds
          the keys of the resurrection, will bring to pass the resurrection
          of the Prophet Joseph and his brethren, and will set them to work
          in bringing about the resurrection of their brethren as He has
          set them to work in all the other branches of the labor from the
          beginning. And the Lord Jesus will appear and show Himself unto
          His servants in His temple in holy places, to counsel and
          instruct and direct. He will appear in the glory of His Father,
          in His resurrected body, among those who can endure His presence
          and glory. And all this I expect long before He will waste away
          and destroy the wicked from off the face of the earth. True, we
          have, in our limited understandings, perhaps imagined, many of
          us, that this glorious resurrection was to come upon us, and upon
          the whole world suddenly, like the rising of the sun. But you
          must remember the sun does not rise the same hour and the same
          moment upon all the earth. It is twenty-four hours in rising and
          twenty-four hours in setting. So with the resurrection. There is
          a day appointed for the resurrection of the righteous. And it is
          sealed upon the heads of many that if they are faithful and true,
          they shall come forth "in the morning of the first resurrection;"
          but the morning lasts from the first hour of the day until
          mid-day, and the day lasts till night; and the rest of the
          dead--those who are not prepared or counted worthy to have part
          in the first resurrection--shall not live again until the
          thousand years are ended. In other words, the first resurrection
          will have been ended, and another period appointed for the
          resurrection of the rest of the dead. But this "morning of the
          first resurrection" is nigh at hand, and blessed are those who,
          through their faithfulness, shall be counted worthy to have part
          in it; for they shall be crowned kings and priests with God and
          the Lamb--they shall reign with Christ and in the midst of His
          people, and carry on the work of the redemption and resurrection
          of the Saints of God. And while in some parts of the world the
          Elders of Israel are preaching the Gospel unto the heathen
          nations who have not been ripened for destruction, but whose
          kings and mighty men have perished, and whose governments have
          been broken in pieces and wasted away, and the government of the
          Kingdom of God has been extended over them; while this is going
          on in some portions of the world, in other places, even in Zion
          and in her Stakes and in Jerusalem, the children of God will be
          engaged in the redemption of their dead in the temples of our
          God, and in the resurrection of those that are counted worthy of
          so great a salvation.
          Then, I say, we need not put off the day of the Lord so far from
          us. Rather let us prepare ourselves for it; for lo and behold! He
          cometh quickly, and blessed are they who are prepared to receive
          Him; for they shall enter into His rest and be crowned with
          glory, and shall labor with Him and with the Prophet Joseph and
          his brethren in bringing to pass this great salvation and
          redemption of our God.
          May God help us to continue faithful, in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 /
          Erastus Snow, October 5th, 1883
                           Erastus Snow, October 5th, 1883
                           REMARKS BY ELDER ERASTUS SNOW,
               Delivered at the General Conference, Friday Afternoon,
                                 October 5th, 1883.
                              Reported by John Irvine.
          I am grateful for the opportunity of meeting in Conference once
          more with the Latter-day Saints, and for the health and strength
          given me to continue my labors among the people, and for this
          same blessing of health which is enjoyed by my brethren. I am
          thankful, too, that the Lord has raised up young men to bear off
          the Kingdom and help carry the burdens of the people. It is also
          a source of satisfaction that He has spoken and given
          instructions through His servant pertaining to the Seventies, to
          more fully organize and set in order the quorums of the
          Priesthood, the Seventies being more especially called as
          assistants to the Twelve Apostles, in the work of the ministry.
          And it is desirable that the revelation upon the subject should
          be fully carried out, the Priesthood in its various departments
          fully organized, and every thing set in order according to the
          word and mind of the Lord; that every quorum of the Priesthood,
          general and local, might be in good working order. For it
          devolves upon the quorums of the Melchizedek Priesthood to carry
          the Gospel to the nations, and to gather those that accept it.
          This work is great, the field is wide, and the word of the Lord
          unto us, His servants, is to thrust in our sickles and reap, and
          gather the harvest of the earth. And here let me say, the Lord
          has sent His angels to superintend the work. The angel spoken of
          by John the revelator, has flown with the everlasting Gospel to
          preach to those that dwell upon the earth; and it is given unto
          us that we should proclaim it to all nations, to every people
          under heaven, the decree having gone forth that this Gospel of
          the Kingdom should be preached to all nations, and then the end
          should come.
          Many years have elapsed since this message began to be
          communicated to the sons of men; and we have become,
          comparatively speaking, a great people. A little one has indeed
          become a thousand. We, who a few years ago were only numbered by
          units and tens, now are numbered by thousands and tens of
          thousands, yea hundreds of thousands. And the Priesthood is
          correspondingly increasing in numbers and in ability to labor,
          and acquiring means to carry on the work of preaching the Gospel
          and of gathering Israel. The labor before us is not diminishing;
          it is extending on every hand, and the Lord desires to see the
          Elders of Israel in their various quorums and organizations
          interested, earnest and alive to their calling, anxious to
          perform well and faithfully the duties assigned them.
          The Spirit of the Lord prompts from time to time the calling and
          setting apart of men to the work of the ministry, and sending
          them to different portions of the globe. And inasmuch as people
          feel earnest and anxious to do good, to use the means that God
          blesses them with in doing good, in sending the Gospel to the
          nations, and in gathering the elect of God--and as this feeling
          prevails and increases among the people generally--the Seventies
          and Elders, when they feel this spirit moving upon them, should
          not wait, supinely rest upon their oars, but be ready to act. And
          here permit me to say that that feeling which has to some extent
          prevailed with some in time past, that when men are named, either
          in Conference, or otherwise called on missions, to indulge in
          such remarks as this--"I wonder what he has been doing that he
          should be sent upon a mission;"--such a spirit should not exist
          in the minds of Latter-day Saints, as it is entirely foreign to
          those who call men to the ministry. Such a feeling is not worthy
          a man called to preach the Gospel of the Son of God. The
          qualifications of Elders that are sought after, and that should
          recommend a minister of the Gospel, should be an earnest desire
          to do good, a willingness to serve, a desire to know what the
          Lord has for him to do, and a readiness to at once engage in the
          undertaking, using himself and his means, if blessed with means,
          his talents or gifts bestowed upon him by the Lord, with an eye
          single to His honor and glory. And men who are at home, ought to
          show forth these qualities in their daily lives and conduct, by
          attending their quorum meetings and their ward meetings, and
          their general Priesthood meetings, and by improving every
          opportunity to learn their duty, and to improve themselves in
          their daily lives; by being prompt in paying their tithing and in
          bringing forth their offerings for the poor, and their
          contributions for the building of Temples. It may not be those
          who are loudest in their professions, but those actually pursuing
          this course of life. These are the men that will be useful on the
          earth, and whom the Lord will delight to own and bless in their
          labors in the ministry. And it is desirable, that in the various
          Stakes of Zion, where quorums are organized, that the Presidents
          of Stakes should encourage those quorums, and the presiding
          officers of the various quorums should endeavor to gather
          together all who have received the Priesthood, and see that they
          are enrolled in their respective quorums, and encourage them to
          attend their quorum meetings, and there seek for the counsels of
          the Holy Ghost, the Spirit that should rest upon the presiding
          officers of quorums to teach the members of the quorums all
          things pertaining to their duties, and how to become fitted for
          the labors whereunto God has called them. For all these quorums
          and organizations are so many classes for mutual improvement,
          edification and instruction; and the Presidents thereof are
          appointed and ordained to instruct the members of their quorums
          in all things in the line of their duty. And they should be
          encouraged by the Presidents of Stakes in their Quarterly
          Conferences to report progress and attendance of members, and the
          progress they are making in their qualifications. The Elders
          should thus be sought after; and according to the spirit they
          manifest in attending to their duties and qualifying themselves
          for the work of the ministry, they should be called into the
          field, whether from the Seventies or the Elders or the High
          Priests, the High Priests, however, being more especially
          expected to take the responsibility of presiding in Branches, in
          Stakes, in Wards, as Presidents of Stakes, as High Counselors, as
          Presiding Elders in the Conferences of the churches abroad. And
          the time is not far distant when the Elders of Israel will be
          required to turn their attention and labors among the branches of
          the house of Israel; and especially among the remnants of Joseph,
          upon this American Continent.
          I am pleased to be able to testify, from my travels among the
          people, in attending Stake Conferences and Priesthood meetings,
          and hearing their reports from time to time, that there is a
          steady improvement in the feelings of the people. This was the
          testimony of Brother David P. Kimball, this morning, when he
          said, that he could perceive a decided improvement in the faith
          of the Latter-day Saints during the six years of his absence. I
          think this is especially visible to all those who are moving and
          acting among the people, they being the best able to judge of
          their true condition. This is a source of gratitude and
          thanksgiving to our Heavenly Father. I will not say of
          self-congratulation; for although we have reason for thanksgiving
          for the mercies and the blessings we have received, yet there are
          many things still to be done, very many improvements to be made,
          many weaknesses to be overcome, and very much yet to be done to
          instruct the people that they may be sanctified and prepared to
          endure the presence of the Lord, when he shall come; and to
          enable them to withstand the shocks of the enemy, that will be
          directed against them. Much remains to be done by the people in
          putting away evils that still exist in our midst; and very much
          needs to be done in the various Wards and Stakes throughout all
          the settlements of the Saints by the local Priesthood. I don't
          merely mean the Presidents of Stakes, the Bishops, the High
          Counselors, and the lesser Priesthood appointed to assist the
          bishops--however important their labors may be and however
          necessary it may be that they should be alive and active; but
          they should also have the support of all High Priests, Seventies
          and Elders in their Wards. And every officer of the Priesthood
          should be alive and awake to see what good he might do, wherever
          and whenever the opportunity exists of doing good--in his own
          home and family first, watching over his own children, laboring
          to unite the hearts and feelings of his wife or wives and
          children, that peace may dwell in his own habitation, and the
          wisdom and knowledge of God grow and increase among his own
          household; and to see that his children do not grow up idlers,
          but are trained to be industrious, and taught to reach out after
          truth, that their spirits may not be unfruitful, and that they
          may be taught in the fear of the Lord, and to worship Him, and to
          call upon Him, and to have faith in Him, so that when sickness
          assails them that they may not first resort to the doctor, or
          desire to put their trust in medical men to heal them, for the
          Lord has commanded His people that when any are sick among them,
          they shall call for the Elders of the Church, who shall pray over
          them, and lay their hands upon them, and anoint them with oil in
          the name of the Lord, and the prayer of faith shall save the
          sick. This was the exhortation of the Apostle James to the
          former-day Saints, and it has been repeated to the Latter-day
          Saints. The revelations given unto us on this subject are to the
          effect that "they who have faith to be healed, shall be healed;
          the deaf who have faith to hear, shall hear; the lame who have
          faith to walk, shall walk, etc. And they who have not faith to do
          these things, but believe in me, I will have compassion upon
          them, and bear their infirmities, and they shall be nursed with
          herbs and mild food, and that not by the hand of an enemy."
          These things are for you, my brethren and sisters, and for your
          families, and all who are willing to receive the word and
          counsels of Almighty God. And if our faith is so weak that we
          have to resort to medical aid, let us do it trusting and relying
          upon God, and who do what they do unto the Lord, righteously,
          justly and honorably, seeking for the light of the Holy Ghost to
          help them in their profession. These will be far more likely to
          succeed and do good; but the other class are not to be relied
          upon, for all doctors have not faith any more than all lawyers or
          other men. But the sound, intelligent philosopher or surgeon has
          respect for God and His works, which are made manifest in all
          nature and in nothing more than the human frame, which is after
          the image of God himself--fearfully and wonderfully made--and
          those who understand it best, respect, as a rule, the Maker, and
          acknowledge His wisdom as being superior to that of man, for
          there is nothing ever devised by man that is equal to his own
          organization in perfection and beauty, or in strength and
          Let us remember and ponder upon these counsels, and cleave to the
          Priesthood and have confidence in it; and let the Elders
          administer to the sick in faith, and let them rebuke disease when
          the Spirit prompts them, and it will be rebuked, and the sick
          will be healed by the power of God. Every Elder in Israel should
          so live before the Lord as to have confidence in Him to do this.
          And let the Presidents of Stakes and the Bishops and the leading
          influential men encourage faith among the people, depending upon
          God and the ordinances of His house rather than trusting in man.
          And while they seek for wisdom to nurse the sick in a manner
          calculated to do them good, let them learn too, that herb
          medicine, unless administered in wisdom and intelligence, is
          liable to injure the patient instead of benefitting him. And let
          the Elders lay aside strong drinks and tobacco, and discontinue
          the practice of everything having a tendency to injure the
          system, and set examples before our sons and daughters that is
          worthy of imitation. If parents will pursue this course they will
          command the respect of their children; and when the time comes
          for them to go down to their graves, their children will point to
          them in affection and pride as being the chief means, under God,
          of their learning His ways and walking in His paths, and of
          eschewing those pernicious habits which are wasting away the life
          of our nation, and that are gradually undermining society and
          destroying the human race. It is the design of the Almighty to
          raise up in these mountains a hardy and a healthy people, a
          people who shall live according to the laws of heaven that govern
          them, in whom shall be found the elements of faith and power; and
          it becomes our duty to shape our lives accordingly. And that God
          may help us to do so, and to accomplish all that is required of
          us, is my earnest desire and prayer. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 /
          Charles W. Penrose, May 20th, 1883
                         Charles W. Penrose, May 20th, 1883
                        DISCOURSE BY ELDER CHAS. W. PENROSE,
                    Delivered in the Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                          Sunday Afternoon, May 20th, 1883.
                               Reported by John Irvine
                                 REQUIRED--WHAT THE
          I am called upon this afternoon quite unexpectedly to me, to
          address this congregation, and I earnestly pray that the spirit
          of the living God may rest down upon me and upon all who are
          gathered in this Tabernacle, that I may be inspired to say
          something which will be profitable to hear, and that all who
          listen to my words may be able to understand them in the spirit
          by which they are spoken.
               We have assembled here to-day to worship God our Heavenly
          Father, in the name of Jesus Christ His Son, under the influence
          and power of the Holy Spirit. In order that our worship may be
          acceptable to God, it must be done in the name of Jesus, and it
          must be done under the influence of His Spirit; for "God is a
          spirit, and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and
          in truth." We must be sincere in our worship; we must be sincere
          in all that we do in order that it may be acceptable to God. But
          sincerity alone is not sufficient. We have to worship Him in
          truth as well as in spirit, and we must worship Him also in the
          way that He has appointed, not in our way. God does not accept
          the ways of man unless those ways are in accordance with His
          ways. And we have come here that we may learn the ways of God,
          and then walk in His path. This is in accordance with the ancient
          prophets. They declared that in the last days, people should come
          from all nations unto "the tops of the mountains" for this very
          purpose, that they might learn of His ways and walk in His paths.
          The reason why we have had to do this is because the ways of our
          fathers, in their worship and in their service towards God, have
          been only in accordance with their private notions, their ideas
          of what is right.
          There has been no voice from heaven heard among the children of
          men on this earth for a great many centuries. People have not
          been guided by the revelations of the Almighty, but by the wisdom
          of man, or, as we think, the folly of man. It is true that the
          people called "Christians," have had the book called the Bible.
          The Old Testament and the New Testament contain books which were
          written by men who lived in ancient times, and who were inspired
          of God. Those books do not contain all that was written by the
          servants of God, in ancient times, but only a few of the writings
          given to the children of men by inspiration. This book contains a
          great deal of truth and some few errors, but the errors are the
          interpolations or the mistranslations of men. The doctrines which
          the Bible contains are true, and they are in sufficient plainness
          to be correctly understood, if the people who read what it
          contains are influenced by the same spirit or inspired by the
          same spirit as the men who wrote those things. But without that
          spirit the people of the earth are not able fully to comprehend
          that which is written. We read in that book that "the letter
          killeth." It is the spirit that giveth life, and it is also the
          spirit that giveth light. Without the spirit of God as the
          revealing influences from on high, mankind are unable to
          comprehend the things of God. As we are unable this afternoon to
          see anything of a physical nature without the natural light which
          comes from the sun, so without the light that comes from the Son
          of Righteousness, we are unable to see the things of God. The
          prophets who wrote the things contained in the Old Testament, and
          the Apostles of Jesus Christ, who wrote the epistles, and other
          writings contained in the New Testament, were blessed with the
          gift that is called in the Scriptures the gift of the Holy Ghost.
          This was not merely an influence which made them feel good; that
          exalted their spiritual natures so as to make them happy,
          contented and peaceful; but it was a manifestation of the power
          that comes from God. As the light that comes from the sun reveals
          through our natural eyes those objects which we see around us, so
          the Holy Ghost coming from God opens up and makes clear and plain
          the things of eternity, those things that are called spiritual to
          our Heavenly Father. The things which we call natural and
          temporal are spiritual to Him, because He sees the essence of
          things, He comprehends them in their internal nature. All the
          elements of all things that exist are eternal, and "the things
          that are spiritual are eternal," and therefore it is all
          spiritual to God. We at the present time are creatures of time,
          and we see things that change. We do not comprehend their eternal
          nature. We do not comprehend their essence. We only see that
          which is on the surface, on the outside. But God looks into the
          internal nature of things as well as of men, and comprehends
          them. And the elements, both of that which is called natural and
          that which is spiritual, are all eternal, without beginning and
          without end. They are manipulated and changed and worked over,
          but they have no beginning in their essence, and they cannot
          have. No atom in nature can be destroyed. It never commenced to
          be; it will never cease to be. God looks upon things as they are,
          in their eternal nature, and therefore they are all eternal or
          spiritual to Him. But speaking after the manner of men we call
          things temporal and spiritual, natural and supernatural; yet
          after all when we come to comprehend them as they are, they are
          all material and all spiritual.
          The inhabitants of the earth, as I have remarked, have been
          without any direct communication from God, and therefore they
          have been measurably in the dark. They have been able to read
          some of the books which were written by the servants of God, who
          were inspired by Him in ancient times; but they have had no
          revelation for themselves. They can read what Isaiah said, or
          Jeremiah, or Peter, or Paul, or Luke, or other writers of the Old
          or New Testament; but they have had no personal revelation. The
          light which they have obtained is a borrowed light, like the
          light of the moon. They have been in a sort of moonlight or
          twinkling star-light. There have been a great many preachers who
          have claimed to be the servants of God, ministering among the
          people in Christendom; some in the ancient church called the
          Church of Rome, some in the Episcopal Church, some in the
          Methodist Church, others in the Baptist Church, and so on through
          all the various denominations that compose modern Christendom. No
          doubt many of them were good men, men who strove to the best of
          their ability, and the best of their knowledge to enlighten the
          minds of their fellow-men. Some of them, perhaps, were mere
          hirelings, "preaching for hire and divining for money;" but
          others were sincere in their hearts, sincere in their worship,
          sincere in the religion which they taught to others. But they had
          not a knowledge of the truth. They had a faith of some kind. They
          believed in certain principles. They believed in the things which
          they read in the Bible so far as they could comprehend them, but
          they had no positive knowledge in regard to the things which they
          believed in and which they taught. The men who were called the
          Reformers, who came out from the Church of Rome, and introduced a
          little more truth than the people previously had, and reformed
          several errors that were existing--were, some of them, most
          excellent men, and they performed a great and a good work in the
          earth. But they were not called of God in the way that His
          servants were called in ancient times who wrote the things
          contained in the Bible, neither were they endowed with the Holy
          Ghost, which those men enjoyed. They nevertheless did a grand
          work in the earth, and for that they will receive their reward,
          no doubt; for no man who ever lived on the earth whether in a
          Christian nation or among the heathen or pagan world, ever did a
          good thing but he was the better for it, and will receive his
          reward for it, and no man ever did wilfully a wicked thing, that
          which he knew and felt to be wrong, without being the worse for
          it, and for that he must give an account in the great day when
          the secrets of the hearts of all mankind shall be made manifest,
          Christian and heathen, those in the ancients times and those in
          the latter times. All who ever dwelt in the earth in the flesh
          must appear before the bar of God, and be judged for the deeds
          done in the body, whether they be good or evil, and they will
          receive a reward for the good that they did, and a punishment for
          the evil that they did, especially and particularly if they did
          evil knowingly, if they sinned wilfully, sinned against light and
          A great many of those persons that I have referred to among those
          reformers and others who worked on the earth, as they thought for
          righteousness and for the Lord, have labored in sincerity, but
          not always in truth. A great many errors have prevailed in the
          world since the time when the Apostles were put to death, when
          the lights that God placed in the world were put out by the hand
          of wickedness; since the servants of God were destroyed in the
          flesh, a great many errors have crept into the world, and
          darkness has spread over the minds of the children of men. Though
          many have worshipped in sincerity, they have not worshipped in
          truth, because they did not fully comprehend the way of truth.
          When they read the Scriptures, they only partially comprehended
          them, and they differed among themselves as to the meaning of
          those things which they read. Thus sect has multiplied upon sect,
          denomination upon denomination. And in what is called
          Christendom, people are in confusion, not comprehending alike,
          not seeing the truth as it is; for if they could all see the
          truth properly, they would see alike; if they all comprehended
          the truth correctly, they would be of one heart and one mind so
          far as they comprehended. But the very fact that those divisions
          exist, proves that there is darkness in the world. If the light
          of God was revealed to six men in the same degree, they would
          comprehend the principles presented before them, the principles
          of the Gospel, exactly in the same way; and if six men can be
          united in comprehending truth exactly alike, six millions or any
          number of men can be united so as to see and comprehend the truth
          exactly in the same way, and this was the effect of the Spirit of
          God, the Holy Ghost, the Comforter, the Revealer, the spirit of
          life and light, which God gave to His people in the ancient
          Christian Church when the Gospel came to them. They were all
          divided when Jesus Christ came into the world. There was a
          similar diversity of opinions and faith in regard to God and His
          ways, to what there is now, only not to so great an extent. Jesus
          came and showed the right way. He was "the way, the truth, and
          the life." He came to reveal His Father's will. He made plain the
          way of life and truth, that all who desired might be able to walk
          therein--in the same way and under the same light, that they
          might see eye to eye and be no more divided. It was thus with the
          people called Pharisees or Sadducees, or with those who belonged
          to any sect that existed among the Jews, or with those who lived
          among the Greeks, and had adopted the Grecian system of
          philosophy, or with people who lived in any other part of the
          world, and believed in any other kind of religion--when they came
          into the Christian church they were no longer divided in their
          opinions and in their faith, but they were all brought to see
          alike; they were "all baptized by one spirit, into one body,
          whether Jew or Gentile, bond or free." They no longer worshipped
          different Gods, or the same God in different ways, but they
          worshipped alike. They had "one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and
          one hope of their calling." But when darkness came into the world
          again; when the guides that God had placed among humanity were
          rejected and thrust out, and the Holy Ghost was withdrawn, and
          men were left to themselves, then they began to divide up, each
          man going his own way, according to his notion. Preachers have
          multiplied, sects have multiplied, and doctrines have multiplied.
          And here we are in the latter times, in the nineteenth century,
          when the people boast so much about Gospel light as well as
          scientific light, here we are in the nineteenth century, and the
          people are groping like blind men for the wall. They do not know
          God, and some do not care anything about Him. Some deny His
          existence, and a great many more stand in a position of doubt and
          uncertainty. Very few squarely deny the existence of a God; but
          there are a great many people who do not know whether there is a
          God or not; they are not satisfied in their minds. "I do not
          know," seems to be the sentiment of the great bulk of intelligent
          people now-a-days in regard to divine things.
          Well, as I said in the beginning of my remarks, we have met here
          to-day to worship God in His way--not our way, that is, not the
          way we have made, not the way that any man has made, but
          according to the plan and pattern revealed from heaven by
          Almighty God, in our day and time. If God manifested himself in
          ancient times, why should He not manifest Himself in latter
          times? If God spoke to the world by the power of the Holy Ghost,
          through chosen men in former ages of the world, why not in this
          age? If angels came down from heaven and ministered to persons
          upon the earth in any period of this world's history, why not in
          the latter times? Are God's lips closed that He cannot speak? Are
          the heavens sealed up and become like brass, that no man can
          break through, and no heavenly being come to this little world
          and make manifest the things of eternity? Has the Holy Ghost
          changed in its power and influence and revealing qualities? Or
          are the children of men in such a condition that they are not
          willing to receive the Lord and His ways and His works and His
          light? Has God purposely departed from the earth, or have the
          people of the earth departed from God? We read here in the book
          of Isaiah about a time that should come when "darkness would
          cover the earth, and gross darkness the people." We read of a
          time when God would come out from His hiding place in judgment
          upon the inhabitants of the earth in the latter days, and it
          should be "as with the people so with the priest; as with the
          servant, so with the master; as with the maid, so with the
          mistress; as with the buyer, so with the seller; as with the
          lender so with the borrower; as with the taker of usury, so with
          the giver of usury to him. The land shall be utterly emptied, and
          utterly spoiled, for the Lord has spoken this word." What for?
          "Because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance,
          broken the everlasting covenant. Therefore has the curse devoured
          the earth, and they that dwell therein are desolate." Now, it
          looks to me a great deal more reasonable to think that the people
          of the earth have departed from God, and gone out of His way, and
          made ways of their own; that they have "heaped to themselves
          teachers having itching ears, and have turned away their ears
          from the truth, and have turned unto fables;" that they have
          become "lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God;" and that
          they have a form of godliness, but lack the power thereof, than
          that God has forsaken them, without any acts of their own. Now, I
          know that this sounds very harsh in Christian ears. It sounds
          very disagreeable to the people who compose Christendom, to say
          that they have gone out of the way--those good, pious-appearing
          people, who express such beautiful sentiments, and have such
          religious motions and such lofty feelings, and many of whom are
          sincere in their hearts--to say that they have gone out of the
          way and that they are in the dark. It is all right to say that
          millions upon millions of the heathen nations for hundreds and
          hundreds of years have been in the dark, and that they are in the
          dark to-day, that they are away from God, that the light of the
          glorious Gospel of Jesus Christ does not shine into their souls,
          that their philosophers and sages and poets and preachers and
          mighty men of intellect are all wrong; that is all right; you can
          say that. Many Christian people do say this, and are not shocked
          in their feelings a bit; but to say that the Christians of this
          generation are out of the way sounds terrible in their ears.
          Nevertheless I will make bold to say that this is the fact; that
          the whole earth has gone astray. I will go no further than they
          say themselves: "We have left undone those things that we ought
          to have done, and have done those things that we ought not to
          have done, and there is no help in us. O Lord have mercy upon us,
          miserable sinners." Well, that is just exactly what they are.
          Now, I do not boast that we are any better than they are. I am
          merely taking them as the Lord will take a great many of them:
          "Out of thine own mouth will I judge thee." They tell the Lord,
          "All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to
          his own way." That is what is the matter with the Christian
          world. They are not walking in the Lord's way. They are walking
          in the ways that men have invented.
          Any student of the Scriptures who is willing to receive truth
          when it is presented before him, can see by perusing the sacred
          books of the Old and the New Testaments, that the condition of
          the world at the present time was anticipated by the ancient
          prophets and apostles. They all saw that the time would come when
          the people would turn away from the truth; when they would walk
          in their own ways; when they would build up churches to
          themselves; when they would hire men to preach to them things
          which were wise and good in their own eyes; they would not be
          very anxious to find out the will of God, or that He might
          declare it to them, but would have preachers to teach them
          doctrines which seemed good to their "itching ears."
          A student of the Scriptures will also find that in every age of
          the world when there was a people dwelling on the earth whom God
          acknowledges as His people, He required them to do all things as
          He commanded them; not as they might choose, but as He commanded.
          When Jesus Christ came He did not come to do His own will, or to
          preach His own doctrine. Said He; "My doctrine is not mine, but
          His that sent me. If any man will do His will, he shall know of
          the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of
          myself." Jesus did nothing and said nothing but that which He had
          been commanded to do and say. He taught no doctrine of Himself.
          And He declared that when He should go away, the Comforter would
          come in His place. What would He do? "He will guide you into all
          truth: for He shall not speak of Himself; but whatsoever he shall
          hear, that shall he speak; and he will show you things to come."
          When the Apostles who were called of Jesus Christ, went out to
          preach the Gospel in His name, they did not go to preach their
          own views and opinions and notions, nor to administer ordinances
          that they thought were proper and adapted to the people in
          different nations, but they went out with the word of the Lord;
          they went out to teach that which had been commanded. Said Jesus
          Christ: "Go therefore and teach all nations, baptizing them in
          the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
          teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded
          you." They were not to preach with the enticing words of man's
          wisdom, nor proclaim their notions about things, but they were to
          go forth with the living word of God, they were to go and teach
          that which Christ had taught them, and which He did not teach of
          Himself. And even then He told them to tarry in Jerusalem until
          they were endowed with power from on high. They waited. And on
          the day of Pentecost, we read, they came together "with one
          accord in one place." They were of one heart, of one mind, and of
          one spirit, and then the Holy Ghost was manifested to them, in
          visible form, in cloven tongues as of fire. They were all filled
          with that spirit, and they spoke with other tongues as the Spirit
          gave them utterance, and from that time, having been ordained by
          Jesus Christ, when He was upon the earth, they were able to go
          out and preach the Gospel to the nations of the earth. On that
          day (Pentecost) Peter preached that great gospel sermon which we
          read about in the second chapter of the Acts of the Apostles. He
          did not teach the people anything in regard to his opinion. He
          told the people that which he knew, that which had been made
          manifest to him, that which he understood, and he did it under
          the influence and power of the Holy Ghost, the same spirit which
          rested upon the ancient prophets, the same spirit by which Jesus
          spoke, which was given to him not by measure, but in a fullness.
          No man has a right to preach in the name of the Lord, unless he
          is endowed as were those Apostles, unless the Lord has committed
          to him a dispensation of the Gospel; and if any man does so he
          does it upon his own responsibility. Unless he is so-called and
          endowed, all his administrations, whether it be baptism,
          confirmation, or any other rite which he may administer in the
          name of deity, are null and void and of non-effect in the
          heavens. When God calls men to officiate, what they do on earth
          in His name in the way He has appointed, by His authority, is as
          valid as if He performed it himself in person; what they "seal on
          earth is sealed in the heavens;" and what they "loose on earth is
          loosed in the heavens." But when men administer the ordinances
          without authority, without inspiration, without being called and
          appointed and ordained specially for that work, all their
          ministrations are vain and valueless. If they baptize a person
          that baptism is void. The baptism of infants is void. It never
          was ordained of God, it never was authorized of Him, but is one
          of the vagaries of men, one of man's inventions. But even baptism
          administered as the ancient Apostles administered it, and as
          Jesus Christ taught it, and according to the pattern which He
          Himself set in His own baptism, if administered by men who have
          not been called and ordained and endowed with the power and right
          to do it, is utterly void, and is of no more account than a bath.
          And it is the absence of this authority and the absence of this
          endowment, the absence of this divine spirit which reveals the
          things of God, and makes them plain to the children of men, which
          have caused all this confusion that exists in the Christian
          world, as well as in the heathen world.
          Well, we have met here this afternoon, and we have gathered here
          in these mountain valleys that we might learn God's ways, and
          then carry them out in our lives, for ours is a practical
          religion. We not only learn but we practice. If we are Latter-day
          Saints, we come to learn what is right and then do it with all
          our might, fearless and regardless of the opinions of others, or
          what other people may do or try to do. The business of our lives
          is to try and find out the will of our Heavenly Father and
          perform it. This we can do. There is no need to be in doubt as to
          what it is. There is no need to depend upon any man--Joseph
          Smith, Brigham Young, John Taylor, Peter, Paul, Isaiah, or
          anybody else. Every man that lives, and every woman that breathes
          the breath of life has a right to know in his or her own heart,
          whether a thing is right and true or not, and those who do not
          strive to obtain this knowledge are derelict. "He that doeth the
          will of the Father shall know of the doctrine." Our business is
          then to find out what the Lord's will is, to guide us in our
          every-day life, not only to make us feel good, to exalt our
          spiritual nature, our emotions, our sentiments, our thoughts, not
          only that, but to guide us in our daily lives, so that all our
          acts may be squared according to the rule of right, that we may
          do that which is pleasing to our Heavenly Father, that we may
          learn to live so as not merely to do our own will, but to do the
          will of Him that has sent us here on the earth, and who has
          enlightened out minds in regard to the truth. We need not walk in
          the dark. It is our privilege to walk in the light. We have come
          out from the darkness, we have come out from confusion, we have
          come out from Babylon into the light and the liberty and the
          certainty of the everlasting Gospel. We have come out from the
          creeds of men; we have come out from the ways of men; we have
          come out from the nations and kingdoms of the earth; we have come
          up into these mountain valleys, that we may find out truth day by
          day and year by year, that we may get closer and closer to our
          God, that we may learn the ways of truth, and walk in them more
          perfectly, until the veil shall be entirely taken away, and we
          shall see and comprehend the things of eternity as plainly as
          with our natural eyes we can behold each other and the things of
          time. It is our privilege to come near unto our Father, to drink
          of those streams that flow from the eternal fountain, to have the
          Holy Ghost in our hearts every day, springing up "like a wall of
          water unto everlasting life." It is our privilege to walk in the
          light continually, and have the Holy Ghost to be our constant
          companion, directing our ways, not only our actions and our
          doings, but our feelings and our thoughts and our sentiments,
          that we may become purer and holier, day by day, until we are
          sanctified and made clean and white and fit to go back into the
          presence of our Heavenly Father.
          This is our business here in Utah--to learn the Lord's ways, to
          walk in the Lord's paths, to be devoted to Him; not only to be
          baptized by water into His Church, but baptized by the Holy
          Ghost, that we may be brought into a oneness with our Father,
          brought into communion with Him, that the voice of the eternal
          Spirit may whisper peace to our souls, and point out the way that
          we shall go, and enable us to bear testimony of the truths made
          manifest from the Lord through His inspired servants as He
          reveals His will. Some people think that we have come here to
          gratify every lust and every passion and every base desire that
          is common to poor fallen humanity. Never was a greater mistake
          made. This is not how I have learned what is commonly called
          "Mormonism." I have learned that it is a holy thing, a sacred
          thing; that it requires self-abnegation, not to men, but to
          truth, to righteousness, to that which God reveals. The very
          essence of "Mormonism" is to find out what the Lord wants, and
          then to do it, and to do it regardless of anybody living upon the
          face of the earth, regardless of what the world may do to try and
          prevent us. And the people were are most of them of the same
          mind. They have come out from the various sects and have all been
          baptized into one spirit, into one body. The same Holy Ghost has
          rested down upon them as rested down upon the Saints in ancient
          times, and has produced the very same results. For the Holy Ghost
          has not changed, God has not changed, the truth has not changed,
          and the Lord is just as willing to-day as He was in the first
          years of the Christian era to reveal himself to those who desire
          to learn of Him, and the Holy Ghost is just as much a revealer
          to-day as it was in the olden times when the Prophets wrote and
          spoke under its influence. The truth is just the same, but the
          people have gone astray from the Lord's ways, corrupted
          themselves before Him, filled the earth with abominations and
          iniquity, and their eyes are so closed to that which is true and
          pure, that when the truth is revealed from heaven, it is
          accounted a strange thing, and they not only turn away from it,
          but they are filled with hatred towards those who have received
          the truth and desire to walk in it.
          It always was so from the beginning. When Abel would worship God
          in the way appointed, Cain, who wanted to go his own way, offered
          what he pleased, what he thought would do, and he was filled with
          anger towards Abel, because his offering was accepted. Abel
          offered what God commanded, the firstlings of the flock. Cain
          offered the fruits of the ground. God had commanded a lamb
          without blemish and without spot, to be offered as an emblem of
          the coming redeemer, who, in the meridian of time should come as
          "the lamb slain from before the foundation of the world," and
          offer his life and pour out his blood for the remission of sins.
          Cain offered what he pleased, and when Abel's offering was
          accepted, Cain was filled with anger. The spirit of Satan entered
          into him--which is the spirit of destruction, the spirit of
          murder--and he arose and slew his brother. Now, though
          persecutors in these times do not realize it themselves, they are
          filled with the same spirit towards the servants of God. When
          Joseph Smith, called of God to be a prophet in this latter time,
          to usher in the great last dispensation of God's mercy to man, to
          bring forth the ancient gospel as taught by Jesus and His
          Apostles, to reveal again the ancient Priesthood and authority
          thereof, to lay the foundation of the latter-day kingdom, to
          prepare the way for the coming of the Son of Man; when he came as
          a boy, an unlettered youth, bearing the glad tidings of great joy
          that communication between the heavens and the earth so long
          lost, had been restored, that the light from the eternal Sun of
          Righteousness had again streamed down to lighten up and dispel
          the darkness of the world--how was he received? Why, men would
          not listen to his teaching. They would not compare the doctrines
          he taught with the scriptures which they professed to believe.
          They hooted at the very idea of present revelation from God. They
          said: "Even supposing it possible that in this enlightened age
          one could receive revelation, was God going to speak to an
          illiterate boy? Would He not choose some of the great and wise
          men of this generation, some of the learned divines. But the idea
          of God's speaking to this youth!" And they were filled with
          anger. The preachers and ministers of the day were filled with
          hatred and wrath towards him, and towards all those who received
          his testimony, and the Saints were driven from place to place,
          from city to city, from State to State, until finally his blood
          was shed. What for? Because he committed crime? No; their own
          confession proved to the contrary, for they said, "the law cannot
          touch him, but powder and ball shall." The same spirit that put
          Jesus Christ to death; the same spirit that put those holy men to
          death about whom I have spoken, who had "the burden of the word
          of the Lord," and came not to declare their own opinions, but the
          word of God Almighty to the inhabitants of the earth; the spirit
          that put them to death, put Joseph Smith to death, and that is
          the spirit that burns in the hearts of the so-called pious
          "Christian" ministers against the Latter-day Saints. They meet
          together in their convocations and conferences and assemblies,
          and pass resolutions about a people of whose doctrines and
          practices and lives they are in perfect ignorance. They do not
          know the motives which prompt us. They do not know the principles
          which actuate us. They know nothing about the work God Almighty
          has called us to do, for which we have left our homes in distant
          lands, and come to these valleys. But they are inspired by the
          same spirit of wickedness and destruction which filled the hearts
          of men who slew the servants of God in former times. They do not
          want to try and convert these Latter-day Saints. Oh, no. What do
          they want to do? One enlightened minister of the Gospel who came
          out here and stayed about twenty-four hours, and like a great
          many other people went back professing to know all about
          "Mormonism"; although perhaps he never spoke to a "Mormon" while
          here--got up in the pulpit and preached the gospel of the bayonet
          and cannon as a means of solving the "Mormon problem!" He said he
          would solve the problem in a short time. He would gather all the
          Latter-day Saints into this great Tabernacle, and then turn the
          artillery of the United States upon them! That was a minister of
          the orthodox gospel. I do not say they are all like him; God
          forbid that I should. But the same spirit is working in their
          hearts and in the hearts of a great many men, and they do not
          know it.
          It may be said of them as Jesus said in regard to His disciples
          on a certain occasion. Because some people did not do exactly as
          they wanted, they asked: "Lord, wilt thou that we command fire to
          come down from heaven, and consume them, even as Elias did?" The
          Savior, we are told, rebuked them and said: "Ye know not what
          manner of spirit ye are of. For the Son of Man is not come to
          destroy men's lives, but to save them." That is the spirit of the
          Gospel, the spirit of salvation. Well, those people who seek the
          destruction of the Latter-day Saints do not know what spirit they
          are of. They are in the dark in regard to the things of God. They
          have not been guided by the gift and power of the Holy Ghost.
          Many of them have administered in the name of the Father and of
          the Son and of the Holy Ghost, without the slightest vestige of
          authority. They have done it upon their own authority; and they
          are filled with the spirit of the evil one, and they desire the
          destruction, not the conversion, of the Latter-day Saints.
          Well, my brethren and sisters and friends, I take great pleasure
          in bearing testimony this afternoon in this public congregation
          before the heavens, before Almighty God, who shall judge the
          world, before Jesus Christ, the Mediator of the new covenant,
          before the angels of heaven who can hear and witness my words,
          that in these last days our Heavenly Father has revealed the
          ancient Gospel anew, by His own voice from heaven and by heavenly
          messengers sent down from on high; that the authority which the
          ancient prophets and apostles held in ancient times has been
          restored, and men hold it now; that the same Holy Ghost by which
          the ancient prophets spoke and wrote the word of the Lord is
          given to the people called Latter-day Saints,--not only to the
          leaders of the Church who are placed in authority to direct and
          manage and govern the affairs of the Church of Christ upon the
          earth, but the body of the people. The spirit that is in the head
          of the Church is in the body, and runs to every extremity,
          enlightening it, filling it with life and with vigor. And it
          brings forth the same fruits, which are love, joy, peace,
          patience, long-suffering, brotherly kindness and charity, and the
          light of God bears witness to these things. And not only have we
          these gifts, but there are other gifts in our midst, the same as
          were manifested in olden times, such as the gift of tongues,
          interpretation of tongues, visions and dreams, the gift of
          prophecy, the discerning of spirits, the healing of the
          sick--those who have faith to be healed--and every gift and every
          power and every blessing which were the result of the reception
          of the Holy Ghost in ancient times, are enjoyed in the Church of
          Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I bear this testimony with
          words of truth and soberness, before God and all men. I know this
          is God's work, and I know it will prevail. I know it will not be
          left to another people. I know it will remain, and every power
          and every influence that rises against it, to destroy it, will
          itself perish and be destroyed, and every arm that is lifted
          against this work will, in the due time of the Lord, be palsied
          and withered, for it is the work of the great God, and it will
          stand for ever. The servants of the Lord in this Church of Jesus
          Christ of Latter-day Saints, in spite of all attacks and schemes
          and efforts to stop them, will go out to every nation, kindred,
          tongue and people, and preach the Gospel of the kingdom as a
          witness before the end shall come, and they will gather the elect
          of God from the four winds and bring them to Zion. And these
          Temples which we are laboring upon will be erected, and the
          people of God will enter them and administer in behalf of the
          living and the dead, and God will commune with His servants
          therein. They will learn more of His ways and walk in His paths;
          they will purge out all iniquity in their midst; they will cut
          off the evil doer by severing him or her from the church; the
          spirit of judgment will come to Zion, and the wicked and ungodly
          and the hypocrite will flee away; and God will break every yoke,
          and remove every bond, and Israel shall be free. And the Zion of
          our God shall arise and shine, and the glory thereof shall stream
          forth to the uttermost parts of the earth, and God will break
          down every nation, kingdom and government of the earth which
          refuses to hearken to his voice, until the kingdoms of this world
          shall become the kingdom of our God and His Christ, and He shall
          reign from pole to pole and from shore to shore.
          May God add His blessing to this testimony, through Jesus Christ.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 / Joseph
          F. Smith, February 17th, 1884
                        Joseph F. Smith, February 17th, 1884
                   Delivered in the Assembly Hall, Salt Lake City,
                       Sunday Afternoon, February 17th, 1884.
                             (Reported by John Irvine.)
                                   SAVIOR'S NOBLE
           F. Smith
          I trust that the Spirit of the Lord may direct what I may say. It
          is sometime since I stood before a congregation in this building;
          my labors have been directed in a great measure in other
          settlements where I have enjoyed seasons of pleasure and profit,
          witnessing a good spirit and a lively feeling among the
          Latter-day Saints wherever it has been my privilege to meet with
          them. I believe that the same good spirit prevails among the
          Latter-day Saints in this City and throughout this Stake of Zion,
          and that there is generally a feeling of confidence and faith in
          the hearts of the Saints in the work of the Lord, and in His
          servants. This is gratifying, when we realize the importance of
          our being united, and of our faith being centered in the Lord,
          and in the great work God has begun in the earth in these last
          days. Without unity and confidence no faithful Latter-day Saint
          can be truly happy.
           F. Smith
          Brother Abraham Hatch has dwelt upon the idea he had when a boy,
          in relation to the characteristics of a Prophet. I presume that
          his idea was similar to that entertained by most of the civilized
          world to-day, and yet I do not think that there is any ground or
          reason for such opinions respecting the character of men who have
          been inspired of God. While he was speaking upon this subject, my
          mind reverted to some of the ancient Prophets whose words have
          been handed down to us as words of inspiration, and so far as my
          mind can recall, all those eminent men of ancient days were, I
          believe, young men when they were called to their respective
          positions. From the first man Adam, down to the latest inspired
          man of God of which we have any account in the Scriptures, they
          were all chosen, so far as my knowledge goes, when they were in
          their youth. Abraham became an inspired man when very young. He
          was called to be a Prophet and Patriarch in his youth. His sons
          Isaac and Jacob, were not at all old men when the prophetic
          inspiration fell upon them. And when we come down to later times
          we find that the Prophet Samuel was chosen and dedicated unto the
          Lord in his childhood. He was a Prophet from his youth up. David
          was a youth, Daniel was a youth, Isaiah was a youth, and so far
          as I recall to mind, the Prophets were all young men when they
          were called to the work that they had to perform. Jesus himself,
          the greatest of all Prophets, only attained His thirty-third year
          when He was offered as a sacrifice upon the cross. Most of the
          Apostles who were chosen by our Savior were young men, and those
          who have been chosen in this dispensation were all of them, in
          the beginning, young men, some of them almost beardless, much
          less having flowing beards, grey and bald, wrinkled and old, as
          we see the prophets and patriarchs pictured by modern artists,
          representing the modern conception of them. President Taylor
          himself, when he was called to the apostleship--which is a
          prophetic calling--was only a young man about thirty years of
          age, and there were many younger than he, and all the way down to
          the present time nearly every man called to the prophetic calling
          has been called in his youth, grown up under the inspiration of
          the Almighty, and has developed under the influence and power of
          the Spirit of the living God. There is, I think, good reason for
          this. The young mind is much more plastic, much more susceptible
          of impressions and of influence than the older mind. A youth can
          be conformed, so to speak, in his ideas, thoughts and feelings,
          to the will and requirements of heaven, much easier than in old
          age. Nevertheless, I believe that God is able to inspire any man
          who is good, faithful, pure and righteous in his desires; God
          delights in the willing mind and in those who keep His laws and
          commandments. Men have been raised up in most all ages of the
          world to perform certain works, or accomplish certain missions;
          they having been inspired for that work and mission from their
          infancy, and it may be even before they were born into the world.
          No doubt all the prominent men who have figured in any
          dispensation of the Gospel since the days of our father, Adam,
          until the present, were inspired of the Almighty from their
          childhood, and were chosen and selected even from or before their
          birth. God has His eye upon the world; He over-rules and controls
          all things, notwithstanding He is shut out from the councils of
          men by their unbelief. His authority is not admitted by the
          world. The children of men ignore His right to govern and
          control, to dictate or to counsel in the earth. Nevertheless, He
          governs and controls the nations of the earth and individuals,
          and all things are subject to His power. I do not mean that all
          mankind are obedient to His will; I do not mean that they are
          willing to acknowledge Him, or that they know Him. I am rather
          inclined to the opinion that they are ignorant entirely of Him
          and of His power, and that they do not conceive it possible that
          He governs and controls the affairs of the nations of the earth.
          Nevertheless, He does so, and while "man proposes, God disposes;"
          while the leaders of the nations of the earth plan and scheme,
          and seek to govern according to their ideas, yet God Almighty
          over-rules their acts and brings forth results which, in
          accordance with His wisdom, are designed to hasten and ultimately
          consummate His grand and glorious purposes in the earth. And I
          believe that one of the greatest sins of which the inhabitants of
          the earth are guilty to-day, is the sin of ingratitude, the want
          of acknowledgement, on their part, of God, and His right to
          govern and control. We see a man raised up with extraordinary
          gifts, or with great intelligence, and he is instrumental in
          developing some great principle. He and the world ascribe his
          great genius and wisdom to himself. He attributes his success to
          his own energies, labor and mental capacity. He does not
          acknowledge the hand of God in anything connected with his
          success, but ignores Him altogether, and takes the honor to
          himself; this will apply to almost all the world. In all the
          great modern discoveries in science, in the arts, in mechanism,
          and in all the material advancement of the age, the world say:
          "We have done it." The individual says, "I have done it," and he
          gives no honor or credit to God. Now, I read in the revelations
          through Joseph Smith, the Prophet, that because of this, God is
          not pleased with the inhabitants of the earth, but is angry with
          them because they will not acknowledge His hand in all things. I
          am inclined to acknowledge the hand of God in all things. If I
          see a man inspired with intelligence, with extraordinary ability
          and wisdom, I say to myself he is indebted to God for that wisdom
          and ability, and that without the providence or interposition of
          the Almighty, he would not have been what he is. He is indebted
          to the Lord Almighty for his intelligence, and for all that he
          has; for the earth is the Lord's and the fulness thereof. God
          originated and designed all things, and all are His children. We
          are born into the world as His offspring; endowed with the same
          attributes. The children of men have sprung from the Almighty,
          whether the world are willing to acknowledge it or not. He is the
          Father of our spirits. He is the originator of our earthly
          tabernacles. We live and move and have our being in God our
          Heavenly Father. And having sprung from Him with our talents, our
          ability, our wisdom, we should at least be willing to acknowledge
          His hand in all the prosperity that may attend us in life, and
          give to Him the honor and glory of all we accomplish in the
          flesh. We are particularly dependent upon the Almighty for
          everything we possess of a worldly character. There is not a man
          on the earth possessed of the wisdom or power of himself to cause
          even a spear of grass to grow, or to produce a kernel of wheat or
          of corn, or any fruit, vegetable, or any material whatever which
          is essential for the sustenance, the happiness and the well-being
          of a human creature in the world. It is true we can go to the
          earth, we find it prepared to a certain extent, and we cultivate,
          plow and plant, and we reap the harvest; but God has ordained
          that the fruits of our labor shall be in subjection and in
          obedience to certain laws which He Himself controls, and which He
          has kept out of the power of man. Man may boast of having a great
          deal of wisdom; of having accomplished a great deal in this 19th
          century; but, if he did but know it, he derives the ability by
          which he accomplishes these things from God his Father, who is in
          heaven. He does not possess the power in and of himself.
           F. Smith
          I read a Scripture something like this: that "there is a spirit
          in man." Now, if that should stop here, there would not be
          perhaps anything very remarkable about man; for the spirit of man
          knoweth only the things of man, and the things of God are
          discerned by the Spirit of God. But while there is a spirit in
          man, it is further stated that "the inspiration of the Almighty
          giveth it understanding." There is not a man born into the world
          but has a portion of the Spirit of God, and it is that Spirit of
          God which gives to his spirit understanding. Without this, he
          would be but an animal like the rest of the brute creation,
          without understanding, without judgment, without skill, without
          ability, except to eat and to drink like the brute beast. But
          inasmuch as the Spirit of God giveth all men understanding, he is
          enlightened above the brute beast. He is made in the image of God
          Himself, so that he can reason, reflect, pray, exercise faith; he
          can use his energies for the accomplishment of the desires of his
          heart, and inasmuch as he puts forth his efforts in the proper
          direction, then he is entitled to an increased portion of the
          Spirit of the Almighty to inspire him to increased intelligence,
          to increased prosperity and happiness in the world; but in
          proportion as he prostitutes his energies for evil, the
          inspiration of the Almighty is withdrawn from him, until he
          becomes so dark and so benighted, that so far as his knowledge of
          God is concerned, so far as the future or hopes of eternal life
          are concerned, he is quite as ignorant as a dumb brute.
           F. Smith
          I was remarkably struck upon this point only a short time ago by
          the expressed opinion of an individual who is considered to be
          very intelligent--a philanthropist, going about the country, and
          said to be doing a great deal of good, who remarked in my hearing
          that the future was a blank; that we knew nothing about it; that
          we knew nothing as to the condition of the spirit after death;
          nor as to the pre-existence of spirits; and that all these things
          must be left without consideration as matters wholly beyond our
          reach. This, in substance, was the opinion expressed by this very
          intelligent person who is going about the country doing so much
          good. I do not doubt that individuals may go about doing good,
          relieving present necessities, throwing out practical ideas and
          suggestions, as to temporal concerns and administering reproof
          that will be greatly beneficial to very many in their present
          worldly condition. But in view of the possibilities of the great
          and eternal hereafter, and the important contingencies of the
          past, involving our origin and our destiny, some of us are so
          constituted that we cannot content ourselves to rest such vital
          matters here, in the midst of so much ignorance, uncertainty and
          doubt. We desire to know something about the future and the past,
          as well as of the present. What is the object of our being?
          Whence have we come? Whither are we going? What consequences are
          dependent upon this life? What is to be gained or lost? To whom
          are we responsible, seeing we do not owe our existence to our
          earthly parents alone, nor to chance or hazard? Is there any
          reward or punishment hereafter for good or evil committed in the
          flesh? We desire to know something about these things, if it is
          possible to know anything about them. What is the standard of
          right and truth, and who is the great example? Those who say in
          their hearts that it is impossible to learn anything about these
          things; that it is sufficient to content ourselves with that
          which we can see and hear and handle, and with that which only
          materially affects our present existence; that that is all we
          have to concern ourselves about, can be but little removed beyond
          the brutes, or the animal creation. Such may be classed with
          those whom the Savior referred to in the parable of the rich man
          who said, "Take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry." In other
          words, "Let us have pleasure in that which we possess or enjoy
           F. Smith
          This reminds me of a remark that I was told a certain man--said
          to be learned in the law--had made in reference to the religion
          of the Latter-day Saints. He remarked something like this: "you
          believe in having joy; you claim that your religion is for the
          purpose of securing to you the greatest amount of joy. Now, on
          the back of this you deny yourselves of this, that and the other.
          Your people are called upon to deny their appetites, to control
          their passions, and to crucify the flesh, etc. My enjoyment
          consists in whatever I can get that is good to eat, to drink or
          wear; whatever ministers to my bodily ease, or comfort, to the
          gratification of my tastes and appetites. I deny myself nothing
          that I like or desire. Hence, I drink, I smoke, I chew, and I do
          as I please," (he might have added, perhaps, "I curse and swear,
          I gamble, I commit whoredoms and take advantage of every
          circumstance I can to augment my pleasure and gratify my lust and
          my ambition), all these contribute pleasure to me and constitute
          my greatest joy and happiness." Such was the confessed moral
          status of this legal individual to whom I refer. But I consider,
          (and I believe that every right-minded person will heartily agree
          with me), that such a conception of the object of human existence
          is groveling, vile and contemptible. No pure-minded person can
          perceive anything noble, exalted, pure or praise worthy in a life
          so selfish, narrow and gross. There is nothing liberal or manly
          in such avowals, much less in the practical results of such a
          life, and coming from a man of years, of legal experience and
          knowledge to a youth with a view to misleading him, is infamous.
          Following, this theory, we observe a man wallowing in the gutter,
          blood-shot, bloated, ragged, hideous and filthy, his family
          neglected at home and destitute, his children bare-foot, naked or
          bundled in rags--and starving for food--objects of pity and
          disgust--without the shadow of a chance for mental
          improvement--with only the blighting, withering example of a
          besotted husband and father for their guiding star. And why all
          this? Because this misguided, fallen human creature is seeking
          joy in the gratification of his appetite! This theory may be
          followed in all its leadings, to similar and equally appalling
          results. No man is safe unless he is master of himself; and there
          is no tyrant so merciless or more to be dreaded than an
          uncontrollable appetite or passion. We will find that if we give
          way to the grovelling appetites of the flesh and follow them up,
          that the end will be invariably bitter, injurious and sorrowful,
          both to the individual and society. It is hurtful in example as
          well as in its individual effects; dangerous and hurtful to the
          unwary; while the denial of these appetites--the crucifixion of
          the flesh, so to speak--and an aspiration for something noble;
          whenever possible, doing good to our fellow creatures, hoping for
          the future, laying up treasures in heaven where moth and rust
          cannot corrupt, and where thieves cannot break through and
          steal--all these things will bring everlasting happiness;
          happiness for this world and the world to come. If there is no
          pleasure in the world except that which we experience in the
          gratification of our physical desires--eating, drinking, gay
          associations, and the pleasures of the world--then the enjoyments
          of the world are bubbles; there is nothing in them, there is no
          lasting benefit or happiness to be derived from them.
           F. Smith
          It seems to me that the example which was set to us by our Savior
          is the example we should seek to follow. Did He prostitute His
          intelligence for the gratification of the lusts of the flesh? or
          did He go about doing good--healing the sick, opening the eyes of
          the blind, giving speech to the dumb, hearing to the deaf,
          cleansing the lepers, forgiving sin, relieving the distressed?
          Was not that the example He set before the world? Was not that
          the course He commanded His disciples to pursue? I think it was.
          There is something in such a course that is praise worthy and
          noble. It will bring true and lasting pleasure; while the
          pleasures of the world are only temporary and fleeting. The
          Spirit of God brings unspeakable pleasure to all who enjoy it--it
          leads men to do good, to deny themselves some things that they
          may the better be enabled to do good. It certainly affords more
          pleasure to give than to receive. It is so said in the
          Scriptures. It is more blessed to administer comfort and joy to
          our fellow creatures than to have them administer to ourselves.
          But under the spirit and influence that the world is under at
          present, this is not the view that is generally taken. Men of the
          world are rushing head-long after that which will as they suppose
          contribute to their own pleasure. They don't care how they get
          pleasure so that they get it. As a general thing gold or money is
          the thing which administers most to their pleasure and joy. In a
          few years, however, they will be called away from this world,
          when their wealth and everything else they have cherished will
          have to be left behind. They cannot take their gold with them,
          because it belongs to the world. When they get behind the veil,
          that which served to make them happy will be gone beyond their
          reach. The source of their pleasure will have fled. There will be
          nothing left for them to enjoy in that other sphere. They had
          their enjoyment in this. They did not frame their minds for other
          enjoyments. They served their bodies, their fleshly desires, and
          the result is they have served the devil, they are, therefore,
          his children, and they have no pleasure in God, nor He in them.
          What is there in this world that can give so much joy or so much
          pleasure as to know that our sins are forgiven; that we stand
          acceptable to God our Heavenly Father; that we have not injured
          any of our fellow creatures; that we are free from any
          indebtedness or incumbrance; that we are not in bondage to the
          world, nor to our fellow creatures? This gives one far greater
          pleasure than anything the world can give. Money cannot give it.
          The wealth of the world cannot bestow this enjoyment upon man.
          The honors of men do not affect this question at all. If we can
          only realize before God our Father, that our sins are forgiven,
          that we are free from transgression, and that our spirit is right
          and pure in the sight of God--this should be a greater source of
          happiness than anything the world can give. To know that we
          possess the gift of the Holy Spirit--that is, the right to claim
          the aid and assistance of the Spirit of God to direct us in our
          labors and curse in life, is far greater than the wealth and the
          honors of this world. To know that we enjoy a portion of those
          rights and privileges which belong to the Priesthood, which is
          after the order of the Son of God, is a source of greater joy and
          pleasure to righteous men than all that the world can give. To
          know that we are in fellowship with the Saints; to know we are
          held in confidence by them; to know that we have their faith and
          prayers, is worth more to the honest-in-heart than all that the
          pleasures of the world can bestow. To know that we have enjoyed
          privileges by which we have secured to ourselves peculiar
          blessings for time and eternity is beyond all comparison with
          earthly things. We would not exchange the least of the gifts that
          have been bestowed upon us by and through the authority of the
          Holy Priesthood for all the world can produce; because that which
          cometh from God is eternal and will not perish. If I were to be
          deprived of the privileges I have referred to, all else of an
          earthly character would be worthless, senseless and evanescent to
          me. We want something that reaches out into eternity. We want to
          know where we came from, and where we are going. Where did we
          come from? From God. Our spirits existed before they came to this
          world. They were in the counsils of the heavens before the
          foundations of the earth were laid. We were there. We sang
          together with the heavenly hosts for joy, when the foundations of
          the earth were laid, and when the plan of our existence upon this
          earth and redemption were mapped out. We were there; we were
          interested, and we took a part in this great preparation. We were
          unquestionably present in those councils, when that wonderful
          circumstance occurred to which President Taylor has so often
          referred of late, when Satan offered himself as a savior of the
          world, if he could but receive the honor and the glory of the
          Father for doing it. But Jesus said, "Father, Thy will be done,
          and the glory be Thine forever." Wherefore, because Satan
          rebelled against God, and sought to destroy the agency of man,
          the Father rejected him and he was cast out, but Jesus was
          accepted. We were, no doubt, there, and took a part in all those
          scenes; we were vitally concerned in the carrying out of these
          great plans and purposes; we understood them, and it was for our
          sakes they were decreed and are to be consummated. These spirits
          have been coming to this earth to take upon them tabernacles,
          that they might become like unto Jesus Christ--being "formed in
          His likeness and image," from the morn of creation until now, and
          will continue until the winding-up scene, until the spirits who
          were destined to come to this world shall have come and
          accomplished their mission in the flesh.
           F. Smith
          This we have learned. How have we found it out? I answer, through
          the prophet Joseph Smith, by revelation and the inspiration of
          the Almighty upon our own minds, by which we are able to
          ascertain the truth respecting the predictions of the Prophet
          Joseph Smith, respecting the truth of the sayings of the ancient
          Prophets, respecting the truth of the Scriptures, respecting the
          validity of the promises that God has made to the children of
          men; for every man has the privilege of obtaining the inspiration
          of the Almighty--or the gift of the Holy Ghost--to know for
          himself and need not depend upon Joseph Smith, nor upon Brigham
          Young, nor upon John Taylor, nor upon any of the prophets who
          wrote and spoke as the Spirit of God gave them utterance, upon
          these principles. We have learned these things. We have learned
          whence we came, why we came, and whither we are going. We are not
          here to seek the joys of the flesh, and yet the Lord does not
          design that we should go about sorrowful, or that we should deny
          ourselves of any legitimate pleasure. The Lord never intended
          that we should go around fasting, mourning, grieving, weeping and
          wailing, while we sojourn in mortality. Jesus said, "When ye
          fast, be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance. * * But
          appear not unto men to fast, but unto thy Father which is in
          secret. In other words, appear to the world to be happy. This is
          the privilege of every Latter-day Saint, and indeed the privilege
          of every soul that lives. There is abundance of joy to be
          obtained aside from the joy which ends in suffering and sorrow.
          Seek those joys that bring no alloy with them, those joys which
          are unremitting, eternal in their nature. Do good.
           F. Smith
          Again, where are we going? We come here and sojourn in the flesh
          a little season, and then we pass away. Every soul that is born
          into the world will die. There is not a soul that has escaped
          death, except those upon whom God has passed, by the power of His
          Spirit, that they should live in the flesh until the second
          coming of the Son of Man: but they will eventually have to pass
          through the ordeal called death; it may be in the twinkling of an
          eye, and without pain or suffering; but they will pass through
          the change, because it is an irrevocable edict of the Almighty.
          "In the day that thou eatest thou shalt surely die." This was the
          edict of the Almighty, and it pertains to Adam--that is, all the
          human race; for Adam is many, and it means you and me and every
          soul that lives and that bears the image of the Father. We shall
          all die. But is that the end of our being? If we had an existence
          before we came here, we certainly shall continue that existence
          when we leave here. The spirit will continue to exist as it did
          before, with the additional advantages derived from having passed
          through this probation. It is absolutely necessary that we should
          come to the earth and take upon us tabernacles; because if we did
          not have tabernacles we could not be like God, or like Jesus
          Christ. God has a tabernacle of flesh and bone. He is an
          organized being just as we are, who are now in the flesh. Jesus
          Christ was born of His mother Mary, He had a fleshly tabernacle;
          He was crucified on the cross; and his body was raised from the
          dead. He burst the bonds of the grave and came forth to newness
          of life, a living soul, a living being, a man with a body, with
          parts and with spirit--the spirit and the body becoming a living
          and immortal soul. You and I have to do the same thing. We must
          go through the same ordeal in order to attain to the glory and
          exaltation which God designed we should enjoy with him in the
          eternal worlds. In other words, we must become like Him;
          peradventure to sit upon thrones, to have dominion, power, and
          eternal increase. God designed this in the beginning. We are the
          children of God. He is an eternal being, without beginning of
          days or end of years. He always was, He is, He always will be. We
          are precisely in the same condition and under the same
          circumstances that God our Heavenly Father was when He was
          passing through this or a similar ordeal. We are destined to come
          forth out of the grave as Jesus did, and to obtain immortal
          bodies as He did--that is, that our tabernacles are to become
          immortal as His became immortal, that the spirit and the body may
          be joined together and become one living being, indivisible,
          inseparable, eternal. This is the object of our existence in the
          world; and we can only attain to these things through obedience
          to certain principles, through walking in certain channels,
          through obtaining certain information, certain intelligence from
          God, without which no man can accomplish this work or fulfill the
          mission he has come upon the earth to fulfill. These principles
          are the principles of the Gospel of eternal truth, the principles
          of faith, repentance, and baptism for the remission of sins, the
          principle of obedience to God the Eternal Father; for obedience
          is one of the first principles or laws of heaven. Without
          obedience, there can be no order, no government, no union, no
          plan or purpose carried out. And that obedience must be
          voluntary; it must not be forced; there must be no coercion. Men
          must not be constrained against their will to obey the will of
          God; they must obey it because they know it to be right, because
          they desire to do it, and because it is their pleasure to do it.
          God delights in the willing heart. 
           F. Smith
          I am looking forward to the time when I shall have passed away
          from this stage of existence, that I shall be permitted to enjoy
          more fully every gift and blessing that has contributed to my
          happiness in this world; everything. I do not believe that there
          is one thing that was designed or intended to give me joy or make
          me happy, that I shall be denied hereafter, provided I continue
          faithful; otherwise my joy cannot be full. I am not now speaking
          of that happiness or pleasure that is derived from sin; I refer
          to the happiness experienced in seeking to do the will of God on
          earth as it is done in heaven. We expect to have our wives and
          husbands in eternity. We expect our children will acknowledge us
          as their fathers and mothers in eternity. I expect this; I look
          for nothing else. Without it I could not be happy. The thought or
          belief that I should be denied this privilege hereafter would
          make me miserable from this moment. I never could be happy again
          without the hope that I shall enjoy the society of my wives and
          children in eternity. If I had not this hope, I should be of all
          men most unhappy; "for if in this life only we have hope in
          Christ, we are of all men most miserable." All who have tasted of
          the influence of the Spirit of God, and have had awakened within
          them a hope of eternal life, cannot be happy unless they continue
          to drink of that fountain until they are satisfied, and it is the
          only fountain at which they can drink and be satisfied.
           F. Smith
          Now, we desire to know something about this, and in the name of
          Israel's God, I say we do know something about it. How do you
          know? I know it, because God has revealed it, through His ancient
          and modern Prophets. I know it, because it has been testified of,
          by all the ancient worthies of God, from the foundation of the
          world to the present. I know it, because it is the theory of
          God's plan of salvation. I know it, because it has been expounded
          and made plain, not only by the Prophets, but by the Savior
          Himself. I know it, because the Spirit of the living God
          testifies of it in my heart, and tells me it is true. I know it
          is true by all the senses by which I can determine the most
          simple fact. I see it with my eyes, I hear it with my ears, I
          understand it with my heart, I comprehend it in part according to
          the intelligence with which God has endowed me. I am convinced of
          it and hence I am happy; for I know that I am in the discharge of
          my duty. This is the happiness I am after. Is it not the
          happiness we all desire? I think it is.
           F. Smith
          May God bless this congregation, and all the household of faith,
          and help us to live for the future, for eternal pleasures,
          exaltations, thrones, principalities, dominion and power; may God
          help us to live for these things; may He give us a knowledge of
          them, that we may comprehend them as He comprehends, that we may
          take the course that He has marked out for us to pursue, in order
          that we may secure unto ourselves the riches of eternal life, is
          my humble prayer, in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 /
          Francis M. Lyman, February 24, 1884
                         Francis M. Lyman, February 24, 1884
                   Delivered in the Assembly Hall, Salt Lake City,
                        Sunday Afternoon, February 24, 1884.
                              Reported by John Irvine.
          While I attempt to speak to you, my brethren and sisters, this
          afternoon, I desire an interest in your faith and prayers, that I
          may speak that which the Lord would have me say, that we may be
          edified, strengthened and encouraged to go forward in the
          discharge of our duties as Saints of the living God. And as I
          speak during the passing of the sacrament, I would not take your
          minds from this sacred ordinance, as I realize the blessings to
          be received by us in partaking thereof. We should remember that
          it is not pleasing in the sight of the Lord to partake of this
          ordinance or sacrament in a thoughtless manner, but that we
          should come here for the purpose of renewing our covenants and of
          pledging ourselves once more to remember the Savior, to take upon
          us His name, and to keep His commandments--that is, to keep all
          of them that have been revealed to us, to live lives of purity,
          and to be devoted and obedient to the principles He has revealed
          for the salvation of man.
          It is said, and truly, that without faith it is impossible to
          please God. It may be as truthfully said that without obedience
          it is impossible to please God; that without virtue, without
          truthfulness, it is impossible to please God. It is not possible
          for us to perform the labors that are required of us as
          Latter-day Saints--to preach the Gospel among the nations, to
          gather together the people, to build temples, and to perform in
          those temples the labors that are necessary for the salvation of
          the living and the dead--except we are aided by the Holy Ghost,
          the Comforter. It is not possible for men who stand at the head
          of this Church to direct, or to give counsel in regard to the
          building up of the Kingdom of God, in regard to the location of
          new settlements, in regard to organizing branches, wards, and
          stakes, and the opening of missions, except they enjoy the Holy
          Ghost. It is not possible for us as Apostles, as Presidents of
          stakes, as Bishops of wards, as Presidents of quorums, as
          Presidents of associations, to preside with dignity and in a
          manner pleasing to God, unless we enjoy the Holy Ghost. It is not
          possible for us as parents, to preside in our families, to set
          good examples before them, to set and keep our houses in
          order--as it is necessary they should be kept, that we may have
          salvation--unless we enjoy the Holy Ghost. It is not possible for
          us as individuals to be Saints, unless we enjoy the Holy Ghost.
          It was conferred upon every one of us when we were baptized, when
          we first embraced the Gospel, and the Lord has given us ample
          instructions as to how we should live, as to the labors we should
          perform, and as to the lives we should lead in order that we may
          enjoy the Holy Ghost. Among other things the sacrament was
          established by the Savior, when He was here in person. He
          established it again when He visited this continent and set up
          His Church among the Nephites. He has again established it in the
          Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and it seems to be
          very important that this sacred ordinance of the Gospel should be
          attended to frequently, that by partaking of it we may witness to
          the Lord that we are willing to take upon us His name, that we
          have not forgotten Him, that we do keep His commandments, and are
          still willing to keep them, and to walk according to His counsel.
          Hence it is important that all Saints, not only presiding
          officers, but all Saints who have named the name of Jesus Christ
          and entered into covenant with God, should meet together often
          and partake of the sacrament and renew their covenants, in order
          that they may have the Spirit of the Lord. It is most pleasing in
          the sight of the Lord, for us to partake of the sacrament if
          there be hard feelings in our hearts, if there be jealousness, if
          there be enmity or strife, if we are not in fellowship with one
          another, if we are not in fellowship with the Church, if we are
          not keeping the commandments of the Lord, if we are not living in
          peace, if we are not obedient to the counsels of heaven; I say
          that it is not pleasing in the sight of the Lord to partake of
          the sacrament under such circumstances. This is an ordinance that
          should be partaken of properly, understandingly, thoughtfully,
          and with faith that we will receive an increased portion of the
          Holy Spirit. If we were not in a world of sin; if we were not in
          a world of trial and temptation; if evil was not in the world as
          well as good; if there were not evil influences; if the spirit
          and power of darkness was chained and there was nothing in this
          life but good; if there was no evil inspiration, no evil
          insinuations--if none of these things existed, then we might
          possibly manage to go through this world without committing sin.
          But we find that as good is in the world so there is evil. As
          there is light in the world, so there is darkness. We are subject
          to the influences of evil--to the powers of darkness. We are
          liable to temptation. God has given us our agency; and it is
          found necessary that we should have very particular instructions,
          very complete organization and perfect care thrown around us, as
          the Saints of God, under those circumstances, in order that we
          may obtain salvation. It is not enough that we be baptized for
          the remission of sins. We need organization. We need the
          Priesthood. We need authority. We need power. We need the
          blessing and help of God from the beginning. When the Elders go
          out into the world, and baptize for the remission of sins, they
          do not there leave the people. They are taught the necessity of
          other ordinances, the necessity of gathering together, the
          principle of tithing, the words of wisdom, the necessity of
          prayer; all these doctrines are laid before them. Then
          organization is given them, not in perfection, but in a primitive
          form. They have branches, and presiding authorities, Elders,
          Priests, Teachers, Deacons, etc., to teach and care for them
          while they are in the world, and when they gather to Zion they
          have a more complete organization of stakes, wards, quorums,
          associations and the like; so that every man and every woman has
          a place and a position. They act as helpers, exhorters,
          encouragers, and all these are necessary for the salvation of the
          people; for we find, as we become attached to the Gospel of
          Christ, the evils of the world come in upon us, and they come
          with greater strength and power to overcome and destroy us.
          There is a warfare in the earth between God and the power of
          evil. The Lord has established this Church. The Father Himself in
          person, accompanied by His Son Jesus Christ, came and laid the
          foundation of this work. They commenced it. They established it.
          They have sustained and supported it. It has not been sustained
          and supported by the power of man. Those who have stood faithful
          to this day--whether they be many or few--among the Latter-day
          Saints, have stood by the blessing and power of God. No one that
          was living in the days of Nauvoo, or in the days of Kirtland, or
          that joined the Church during the lifetime of President Young,
          and has faithfully endured to the present time, can arrogate to
          himself that he has so endured in his own strength. God has
          sustained him. The Lord has given him a testimony, and
          established in his heart a knowledge of the truth. And the reason
          that this Church is so much more stable and solid--cannot be
          overthrown, cannot be broken in upon by those from the
          outside--is that in each individual heart is established a
          knowledge that comes by the gift of God--the Holy Ghost. The
          religious world, so far as they have endeavored to convert the
          Latter-day Saints--to reform them and turn them from their
          faith--have failed. They know not the reason of their failure.
          They cannot understand why it is that the Latter-day Saints are
          not easily converted. You cannot convert a Latter-day Saint. You
          cannot change a Latter-day Saint into a Methodist, a
          Presbyterian, or a Roman Catholic, or cause him to join any other
          denomination upon the face of the earth. There is not wisdom nor
          power enough in the world to turn one Latter-day Saint from the
          truth; for every man, woman and child that is a Latter-day Saint
          has established in his or her heart a knowledge of the truth.
          They have a testimony of the truth from God. The father does not
          have this testimony for the son, or the mother for the daughter,
          or the priest for the people; but every individual member of the
          Church has a knowledge of the truth for himself. An honest man
          cannot turn from that which he knows to be true. An honest,
          virtuous, good man is willing to lay down his life for the truth.
          Indeed, men devoted to error are found willing to lay down their
          lives (and have so done in many instances), for it. How much
          more, then, will men be willing to lay down their lives for that
          which they know to be truth--for the Gospel of Christ. Have we a
          knowledge of the principles of truth? Yes. Do the Apostles depend
          upon President Taylor, who was so closely associated with the
          Prophet Joseph in his lifetime and at the time of his death, for
          a testimony of the truth? No. Is there any man dependent upon
          President Taylor for a knowledge of the truth. No. There is not a
          member of the Church dependent upon any man for a knowledge of
          the truth of this work. The early members of the Church never
          depended upon Joseph Smith for their testimony in regard to these
          things. It was not in the power of the Prophet to give that
          knowledge. Jesus Himself--if I read the Scriptures correctly--had
          not the power to establish in the hearts of His own Apostles a
          knowledge of the truth, or even a knowledge of his own character.
          For when He enquired of Peter and the disciples as to who the
          world said He was, they answered Him that some said that He was
          Elias, some that He was John the Baptist arisen from the dead,
          etc. "But," said He, "whom say ye that I am?" Peter answered and
          said, "Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God." Whereupon
          the Savior informed him that flesh and blood had not revealed
          that unto him, but His Father which is in heaven. Now, if there
          was a man at that time who could possibly obtain, in any other
          way, a knowledge as to who Jesus was and as to the truth of the
          work He established, that man was Peter. Such men as President
          Taylor, and the first Apostles of the Church, would have, if it
          were possible, obtained that knowledge from the Prophet Joseph.
          But none of these men obtained their knowledge in regard to these
          things in that way. And you may ask the Saints by the tens of
          thousands in the land of Zion to-day, as to how they learned
          Joseph Smith was a Prophet of God--although a great many of them
          never saw him and yet there are many of them who knew him
          personally--and they will tell you that their knowledge of his
          character, mission and power, was given to them of the Lord. We
          have had this knowledge established in our hearts and we cannot
          fly it. We cannot close our eyes upon it. When we know what the
          truth is, we cannot fail to tell it; and there are people in the
          world today, that look upon us, perhaps, with no degree of
          allowance and consider us a very wicked people, that, if they had
          the same testimony that we have, would be as valiant in defense
          of the truth as we are. There are many such people in the world
          to-day--good, honest people. Are they Methodists? I presume so.
          Are they Presbyterians and Catholics and people belonging to many
          other denominations? Yes; and there are honest men, perhaps, who
          do not profess Christ at all--who claim to be infidels and close
          their eyes to the mission of Christ--that if they had the
          knowledge we have, they would be just as valiant as we are
          to-day. They could not help it; for that testimony would make
          them valiant, and they would be as difficult to turn from the
          truth as the Latter-day Saints. The world have discovered that
          the Latter-day Saints cannot be turned from their purpose, cannot
          be converted, and having failed to attain their object in that
          way, many advocate strong measures being enacted against us. Some
          go so far as to think we should be exterminated; others that we
          should be placed under political disabilities, or hampered in
          some way, in order that our religious faith may be crippled. Will
          they accomplish their object by these means? No. Such treatment
          did not accomplish anything with the Son of God, nor with His
          Apostles, and it did not accomplish anything with Daniel, or with
          his brethren, who were cast into the fiery furnace. It did not
          change their sentiments and their faith, and it will not change
          ours. We cannot deny the truth. We may have troubles in this
          life; many of us may see sorrow in this life; but some of us will
          ever see what the Savior saw in that regard. None of us will
          suffer as He suffered, although His mission was but a short one.
          Our mission may be long, and our suffering may possibly, in some
          instances, be continuous; but we will not be called to suffer as
          much as He suffered. Yet, we may look for persecution. But the
          Lord will over-rule all things for our good. He will sustain this
          Kingdom, and He will build it up in spite of all other kingdoms
          in the earth; for it is His right to do so. The earth is the
          Lord's, and the fullness thereof, and the peoples, the nations,
          and the kingdoms that are upon the earth, all belong to the Lord.
          We are His children, and He has the right to control and dictate
          in all the affairs of men. He has the right to over-rule the
          conduct of men to serve his purposes; to over-rule the wars
          between the nations of the earth. He has the right to break down
          nations, to change the form of government, to cause revolutions,
          and in all things to do that which seemeth Him good. He has the
          right to do all this--just as He broke off the colonies from the
          mother country, and established religious liberty, thus making it
          possible for His Kingdom to be established upon this land.
          Now, as we discover the world opposed to us--feeling, no doubt,
          in a great many instances that they are doing God's service in
          bringing everything to bear against what they consider a very
          wicked people--what is the proper thing for the Saints to do for
          their protection. This is an important matter. When surrounded by
          enemies, a wise man would take the precaution to protect himself
          from destruction. What, then, shall we do that we may not be
          trodden down, broken to pieces and scattered or destroyed; that
          we may remain in this land; that we may not be removed as we were
          from Missouri, from Illinois, and from Ohio? What shall we do
          that we may not be brought into bondage, but may remain a free
          people?--that is, free to do the will of God, and to build up His
          Kingdom upon the earth, the mission we are called upon to
          perform. The most important matter that I know of is, not to
          prepare our arms, not to prepare for war, but to prepare for
          peace; to keep the commandments of the Lord; to discharge with
          fidelity to God every obligation we are under to Him; to keep
          sacredly His laws, and to be found in the discharge of our duty;
          preaching the Gospel; gathering the poor; building temples;
          establishing home industries; becoming a self-sustaining people;
          providing for our necessities; providing employment that none may
          need; providing for the poor; nursing the sick; caring for those
          who need comfort; seeking to do the will of God in all things;
          abstaining from intemperance, from profanity, from corruptions of
          every name and nature; seeking to be, not as the world, but to be
          indeed the Saints of God; striving to be united; listening to
          counsel; seeking to live so that the Spirit of the Lord may
          inspire our hearts and prepare us for the responsibilities that
          are upon us, let our positions be what they may--home
          missionaries, foreign missionaries, men presiding in the Church,
          in the Stakes, in the Quorums, in the Associations, in the
          institutions of learning, each and all standing in their proper
          place, doing the will of God. For we have no battles to fight if
          we be the Saints of our God. He will fight our battles if battles
          are to be fought. The wicked will slay the wicked and the
          righteous will be left free. The Lord has been very good to us in
          giving us this land, and in enabling us to maintain peace
          therein, up to the present time. It is a land that is admirably
          adapted to the necessities of this growing kingdom. The water
          supplies are not very great, and as we have multiplied the water
          sources have been almost all utilized. Yet the fountain of water
          have increased in many parts of the country, and where but a few
          families, a few years ago, could be accommodated on a stream--say
          a half a dozen families or the like--to-day we have fifty to a
          hundred families on that same stream, with a constant and
          abundant supply of water. And the Lord has changed the seasons.
          Fruits are hardier, and some that are not so hardy are doing and
          thriving well in our land. The blessing of the Lord has been over
          the land, and peace has reigned in it, and it will continue to
          reign if we but do the will of the Lord. He will over-rule and
          control all those agencies that may be brought against us from
          the outside, if we will but listen to the voice of counsel here
          at home. That voice of counsel is within the reach of every
          family in every neighborhood. He has given to this people the
          Priesthood. He has placed it upon almost every man in Zion.
          Almost every man bears a portion of the Holy Priesthood, Aaronic
          or Melchizedek. We are almost a nation of Priests--of High
          Priests, Seventies, Elders--men bearing the Priesthood and
          authority of God. We have each of us the right to approach the
          throne of grace, to hear from the Father, to receive counsel, to
          receive inspiration in regard to the duties which devolve upon
          us, that we may not go astray. Every man who is called to preside
          as a Bishop in a ward is entitled to the Holy Spirit to guide him
          in his labors; so is every man who presides over a family, or in
          a quorum, or who is placed in a position to lead and instruct the
          people. That is the reason that the Lord has given us such a host
          of ministers; for every man who holds the Priesthood is a
          minister of righteousness and is expected to administer in his
          calling in the midst of the people in the world, wherever he is
          located, at home or abroad. We have thousands of such men. Our
          settlements are full of them. They are the men who build the
          houses and decorate them, and they do the business that is done
          in Zion among our people. They are ministers of righteousness;
          and if the people will keep the commandments of God, His band
          will be stretched out in their behalf, to save and protect them
          from harm.
          Now, when I assert that the Latter-day Saints cannot be converted
          or turned from the truth, I do not mean to say that there are
          none who turn away from the Gospel. There are many who lose their
          faith, many who go into sin, many who apostatize. But are they
          Saints of God? No. Do those that apostatize live the lives of
          Saints? No. If they were Saints, enjoying the Spirit of the Lord,
          it would be impossible for them to apostatize. A man cannot deny
          the truth when the Spirit of God is burning in His bosom; but by
          transgressing the laws of God, by neglect and sin, men lose their
          testimony and are taken up by the "Josephites," or by some other
          class of people, and perhaps "improved." I trust they are. But
          when it comes to converting a Latter-day Saint, a man who keeps
          the commandments of God, and lives according to the principles of
          the Gospel, as laid down by the Prophet Joseph Smith, it cannot
          be done. They may labor here as missionaries from now to
          doomsday, they never can get one Latter-day Saint to join any of
          their religious denominations. Strenuous efforts are being made
          to capture our children, as though there were not children enough
          in the world requiring their attention. They might leave us to
          manage our own children. But they think they stand a better show
          to convert children than grown people. If the truth were not
          grounded in our hearts, we would be liable to conversion. But
          inasmuch as we keep the commandments of the Lord, and enjoy the
          Holy Ghost, we cannot be turned.
          We have no fears in regard to the work of the Lord; because it is
          just as plain to us as the sun at noonday, that the Kingdom of
          God will endure and will not be given to another people. If the
          Saints will be faithful, the Church and Kingdom of God will be
          safe; God will be honored, and His purposes accomplished in the
          earth; and a pure people will grow up here such as the Lord will
          delight to come and dwell among.
          The organization of the Church of God is perfect. We find at the
          head of every Quorum of Deacons three are appointed to preside;
          the same with the Teachers, Priests and Elders; the Seventies
          have seven men to preside over each Quorum; and all these various
          Quorums are expected to hold meetings and classes, so that they
          may be instructed in their various duties, that men may be
          prepared to preach the Gospel in the nations of the earth. Then,
          we have organizations of the young people--the Mutual Improvement
          Associations--which are intended to embrace all the young people
          of Zion. But we find in our visits through the country, that
          complaints are made that the young people are not all enrolled.
          Many have not been brought to see the importance of joining these
          associations. Well, now, if it were left to the children
          entirely, how many of them would go to school at the age of
          eight, ten or twelve years? Not many. But there is a proper
          influence brought to bear upon children by their parents. School
          houses and teachers are provided, and then the children are sent
          to school. After a while, as the children grow older, they begin
          to see the importance of knowledge, and then it does not take
          very much exertion on the part of parents to get the children to
          attend school. In the same way, those who have identified
          themselves with these associations begin to see the importance of
          their connection therewith. But those who are on the outside need
          to be instructed in regard to the importance of these things, and
          an influence should be brought to bear upon them in that
          direction. They should be taken early in life. Many of them have
          been left alone until it is too late, or later than it ought to
          have been. At the age of twelve or fourteen years they should be
          introduced into the lesser Priesthood, and thus learn something
          of the authority of the Lord. They should be educated in the
          principles of the Gospel, and have faith established in their
          hearts. This should be done by experienced people. But they have
          been more or less neglected until we have hundreds to-day that
          are twenty years of age, that bear no Priesthood at all. When
          they get to that age they become more or less set in their ways;
          they desire to be free; they don't care to be hampered with
          religion or anything of that kind. Now, my brethren and sisters,
          parents in Zion, Bishops, leading men in the Wards and stakes,
          see to it that the young people receive proper instruction; see
          to it that they are not neglected as those of whom I have been
          speaking have been neglected in the past. Let fathers and mothers
          be anxious in regard to their sons and daughters. Let those who
          are yet young be brought into the Mutual Improvement Associations
          and classes, that they may have the advantage of a religious
          training in the Church. There is nothing on earth of greater
          value to your children than a knowledge of the truth. I know of
          no gift that could be given to my children from among men that
          would compensate for their being deprived of the knowledge that
          God has established His Church and Kingdom upon the earth; that
          Joseph Smith was a Prophet of God; that Jesus Christ is the Son
          of God; and that God lives. To deprive them of this knowledge,
          nothing could compensate for its loss. Then, if we so consider
          these things; if we are so firmly established in the truth and
          value it so much, let us see to it that our children are not
          neglected. At eight years of age they should be baptized for
          remission of their sins, and become members of the Church. And as
          they get older, see that they are brought into the schools,
          associations and classes. See, too, that they are taught at home
          in regard to prayer, family worship, etc. Let them not be
          neglected; for if they are neglected and go astray, your hearts
          will be barren and sorrowful. You may be very firm and solid
          yourselves; but in the loss of a son or daughter, through
          neglect, your hearts will be made sorrowful. The Catholics are
          very careful in regard to their children, and I respect them for
          it. They are very careful to educate their children in regard to
          the Catholic faith. Not that I would have my children become
          Catholics; but I would have the same care that they display in
          this matter displayed in the care of the children of the
          Latter-day Saints. Early life is the time when they should be
          trained. Then indelible impressions can be made in their minds.
          How difficult it is when men have grown up in the world with
          ideas that are prevalent in the world in regard to God, the
          Savior, religion, etc.,--how difficult it is to bring them into
          the Church, and get those ideas eradicated from their minds. I
          have heard elderly brethren who were brought up as Methodists
          say, that it was almost impossible for them to rid themselves of
          Methodism. One of the earliest revelations given to the Church
          charges all parents having children in Zion to teach them faith
          in God, faith in Jesus Christ, and that when they arrive at the
          sins. This is a law that has been before us since 1831, many
          years before I was born. Now, I wonder if this law has not been
          neglected by the Latter-day Saints--generally forgotten or
          overlooked. Have we not been careless in this regard? Let every
          father and every mother question their own hearts on this matter,
          and if they have been negligent, let them reform and see that
          they be more careful in the future than they have been in the
          past. Indeed, let me exhort you, my brethren and sisters, you who
          stand at the heads of families, Wards, and quorums, to be of a
          truth educators of the people, teaching them not only in theory,
          but in practice, in your lives; walking so that you may be the
          light of a sun instead of a moon; and that great improvement may
          be found all around.
          And that God may sustain us, inspire our hearts and help us to
          discharge with fidelity every duty; that the testimony God has
          given us may grow and increase in our hearts, is my prayer in the
          name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 /
          Erastus Snow, February 24, 1884
                           Erastus Snow, February 24, 1884
                          REMARKS BY APOSTLE ERASTUS SNOW,
                   Delivered in the Assembly Hall, Salt Lake City,
                        Sunday Afternoon, February 24, 1884.
                               Reported by John Irvine
                            APOSTASY--DUTY OF THE SAINTS.
          It is alloted to me to occupy a few minutes, and it is a
          privilege which I ought to esteem, and which I do esteem, to
          stand before my brethren and sisters as a witness of the truth
          which we have embraced; the truth as it is revealed in Christ,
          the truth that is confirmed in the hearts of the Saints of the
          Holy Ghost, the truth as testified by ancient Prophets,
          Patriarchs and Apostles, and by our Savior Himself when upon the
          earth among the Jews, and among the Nephites on the continent of
          The work in which the Latter-day Saints are engaged, the work
          whereunto God has called His people in this day, is the work
          which has engaged the attention of the Prophets and Saints from
          the beginning of the world till the present time. That portion of
          the world of mankind who have been inspired from above to look
          forward through the vista of opening years and contemplate the
          future history of mankind, have had their eyes directed to the
          great and last dispensation of the fullness of times, in which
          the Lord would perfect His work on the earth, and bring in
          everlasting righteousness; when He would establish a reign of
          peace, when wickedness would be subdued, when Satan would be
          curtailed in his power and influence among the children of
          men--the time represented in the vision of St. John, when he
          "I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the
          bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand.
          "And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the
          Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years, and cast him
          into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon
          him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the
          thousand years should be fulfilled; and after that he must be
          loosed a little season.
          "And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was
          given unto them; and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded
          for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had
          not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received
          his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived
          and reigned with Christ a thousand years.
          "But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand
          years were finished. This is the first resurrection.
          "Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection;
          on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be Priests
          of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years."
          Now, this thousand years is spoken of among modern Christians as
          the millennium, signifying a thousand years. That period of all
          other periods will, as we speak of the Sabbath, be a day of rest.
          On the Sabbath, the seventh day, the Lord rested from his labors,
          and He has commanded His people to rest from their labors on that
          day; to meet together and worship Him; to offer up their
          sacraments and their oblations; to confess their sins unto one
          and another and before the Lord. And as they ask to be forgiven,
          and feel to forgive one another, so God forgives them. Our Savior
          gave us clearly to understand this when He taught His disciples
          to pray and to say, "Forgive us our debts as we forgive our
          debtors;" for, said he, "If ye forgive not men their trespasses,
          neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." This day of
          rest is a day to forgive and to be forgiven, and to make peace
          with one another and with our God, and is a type of the
          millennium, or the seventh thousandth year, in the which
          universal peace will be established upon the earth, and the
          Kingdom of our God prevail in all lands--a day when the servants
          of God may bear the glad tidings to all people, nations, kindreds
          and tongues upon all the face of the earth, and there shall be
          none to molest them, or make them afraid. The truth will abound
          and light and understanding come to the people. It will be a day
          of great light and understanding come to the people. It will be a
          day of great light in every corner of the land--the day spoken of
          by the Prophet Isaiah, wherein he says the knowledge of the Lord
          shall cover the earth as the waters cover the sea--the day when
          they shall teach no more every man his neighbor, and every man
          his brother, saying, know the Lord; for they shall all know Him
          from the least of them to the greatest of them--a day when "every
          man shall see eye to eye." Prophets and Saints have looked for
          such a period, have longed for it, have prayed for it, have sung
          about it, have prophesied of it, and they have spoken of the work
          that should bring it about. Are all these prophecies fallacious?
          Are all these hopes vain? Will all these expectations come to
          naught? Or are they to be fulfilled? With the Latter-day Saints
          there is but one answer to this question. The Lord has opened
          their understanding, has touched their eyes, has pricked them in
          the ear, has comforted them, and has given to them the Holy
          Ghost. They have been enabled to see and to discern the signs of
          the times, and to understand in a measure the age in which we
          live. It is a source of unbounded joy unto those who possess this
          testimony, and are living for the blessings promised to the
          faithful. These events are dawning upon us. A preparatory work
          has been begun in the earth. As foretold in the Scriptures, an
          angel has flown in the midst of heaven having the everlasting
          Gospel to deliver to them that dwell on the earth, and which
          shall be preached unto every nation, kindred, tongue and people
          before the end cometh. But will every nation and kindred and
          tongue and people receive it? Not at all. It has not been so
          written. But it is written that the time cometh when all who will
          not hear that Prophet whom Moses said God would raise up unto the
          people should be cut off from among his people. This Prophet was
          Jesus Christ, the Savior of the world, raised up in the meridian
          of time and in the midst of the house of Israel, from the seed of
          Abraham, that seed which God said would be a blessing unto all
          nations. When Jesus showed himself unto the Nephites on the
          American continent, He quoted this Scripture--this prophecy of
          Moses--and said to them, "I am that Prophet of whom Moses spake."
          Now, we have this assurance, that the time will come when all
          those who will not hear that Prophet shall be cut off from among
          the people. It is grievous to reflect upon the darkness that
          enshrouds the minds of the people; upon the unbelief which
          prevails among mankind at the present time; upon the infidelity
          which stalks abroad, that is manifested in church and state, with
          high and low. It is grievous to contemplate how statesmen and the
          would-be-wise men of our age despise God, or ignore His counsels,
          ignore His word, His right to rule, His ability to counsel, to
          teach, and to regulate the affairs of men; how little they
          acknowledge His hand, how unwilling they are to allow Him to have
          any voice in the affairs of state. And it is equally sorrowful to
          contemplate how little are Christian sects willing to acknowledge
          Him, or allow Him to interfere in their affairs, or acknowledge
          Him in any way, further than in a sort of--what shall I say?--a
          sort of mystical way. True, there are many who affect to believe
          that they must be born again, and teach the doctrine of the new
          birth, the spiritual birth. But how little they seem to
          comprehend what is meant by that birth, and the effects that
          follow it; yet there are some, yea, there are many in the
          Christian world who profess to believe what Jesus said to
          Nicodemus in the third chapter of John's Gospel, that a man must
          be born of the water and of the Spirit in order to enter into the
          kingdom of heaven, and that that which is born of the flesh is
          flesh, and that which is born of the spirit is spirit. Yet when
          we come to read the New Testament and learn of the fruits, the
          influence and effects of that Spirit upon those who possess it,
          how wonderful, how strange it appears to those Christians! The
          Latter-day Saints strive to bring home to the minds of those
          modern Christians, that the Holy Spirit, when overshadowing the
          people born of the water and of the Spirit produces certain
          fruits, certain effects, that are the same to-day as anciently,
          and will be the same among all people in all ages and times when
          people receive that Spirit. But most of the Christian sects of
          our time ignore those fruits of the Spirit, the spiritual gifts
          and blessings which followed the outpouring of that Spirit upon
          the Saints of God in all former ages.
          Brother Lyman has well said that it is this Spirit shed abroad
          upon the Latter-day Saints, bearing witness unto them of the
          truth--which is the witness of the Holy Ghost of the Father and
          of the Son--that makes them steadfast and immovable. They cannot
          be turned away so long as they enjoy this Spirit; they cannot be
          turned away from the light of the Gospel and the liberties they
          enjoy in Christ Jesus; they cannot be converted to Catholicism,
          nor Methodism, nor any other ism; but if they fall into sin, if
          they violate their holy covenants, if they grieve the Holy Spirit
          from them, then they are left in great darkness. As the Savior
          said to His disciples: "The light of the body is the eye: if,
          therefore, thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of
          light. But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of
          darkness. If, therefore, that which is in thee be darkness, how
          great is that darkness!" It may seem to some a wonder how it is,
          that any man or set of men, after having once tasted of the good
          word of God, of the heavenly gifts, and the powers of the world
          to come, and having been made to know and understand the things
          of God, and been able to bear witness of them, should afterwards
          fall away, lose their testimony and the light of the truth, fall
          into darkness and apostatize. It is a marvel and a wonder unto
          many how this can be, and to some portion of the Christian world
          it has seemed impossible, and they have affected to espouse the
          dogma and to make it a part of their religious creed, that once
          in grace always in grace, and that if they are the elect of God,
          they cannot fall away. This is a doctrine of men: it is not a
          doctrine of Christ, and it is not true. The Savior constantly
          exhorted His disciples to watch and pray, lest they should fall
          into temptation, and cautioned them that they who once put their
          hands to the plow and looked back, or turned away, were not fit
          for the kingdom of heaven, but that they who endured unto the
          end, the same should have eternal life. He warned them against
          falling into darkness, and, as I have already quoted, He assured
          them that the light that was in them might become darkness, and
          if it did, how great should be that darkness.
          Brother Lyman has well said, also, that when men apostatize from
          the truths of heaven, and become infidel to the things of God, it
          is because of sin and transgression; it is because they have
          given way to evil; it is because they have corrupted their ways,
          defiled their tabernacles, defiled their spirits, violated their
          own consciences, or given themselves up to work sin and
          wickedness. All this they may have done in the dark, or in
          secret, and not upon the housetops: but the time cometh when the
          secrets of all hearts shall be revealed, and every secret thing
          shall be made known upon the housetops. Then it shall be known
          and read of men the causes that operated to take away the light
          and the truth from the hearts of men and left them to go into
          outer and utter darkness. None are proof against the attacks of
          the enemy, against the powers of evil, against the vile devices
          of the wicked one; none are proof against or safe from the
          influence and power thereof, without watchfulness and prayer,
          without so living that the Spirit will have pleasure to abide
          with them, to be their monitor and protector. That Spirit will
          not dwell in unholy temples, it will not continue to dwell with
          those who violate their own consciences, corrupt their ways,
          defile their spirits and tabernacles, and defile themselves with
          their fellow creatures; for God will have a pure people. His
          Kingdom is holy; His dominions are pure; and no impure thing can
          inherit the Kingdom of God. "And without are dogs and sorcerers,
          and whoremongers and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever
          loveth and maketh a lie."
          Brother Lyman asked the question (and answered it beautifully)
          pertaining to the preservation of the Latter-day Saints, from the
          combined efforts of their enemies. He answered well. The safety
          and protection of the Latter-day Saints lie in their preparing
          for peace. In other words, it is to make peace with their God,
          and with one another, and to proclaim peace unto all mankind, and
          so live and deport themselves, that they will encourage, extend
          and maintain peace to the utmost of their ability. But, and if
          the wicked continue to oppress, to war against and annoy the
          people of God, and to deprive them of social, religious and
          political privileges, and other rights that belong to them as the
          children of God, as human beings, as citizens of the
          commonwealth, those unalienable rights of life and liberty and
          the pursuit of happiness; if, I say, the wicked combine to
          abridge these immunities, privileges and rights, and trample them
          under foot, and to wage war against the Saints for the purpose of
          destroying them, what may we do to avert it? It has been well
          answered: Do the will of the Lord; keep His commandments; do good
          to one another; forgive one another, and ask to be forgiven of
          each other and of our God; walk humbly before Him day and night;
          trust in Him, believe in Him, and go forward in the discharge of
          every duty, fearing only God. "Fear not them," says the Savior,
          "which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul; but
          rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in
          hell." Let our fear centre upon Him; let our trust and our faith
          centre upon Him; let us maintain our confidence in Him, that He
          rules in the heavens and among the armies of men, and that He
          turns the hearts of the children of men as the rivers of water
          are turned; and if at one time their hearts are softened, as was
          Pharaoh's of old, and then, again, their hearts are hardened, as
          was Pharaoh's, we may bear in mind that all these things are
          necessary in the accomplishment of the divine purposes of our
          Father and Creator. For the wicked have their agency as well as
          the righteous, and God will not deprive them of it. He wills not
          that any be deprived of their agency. If people will work
          wickedness; if they will violate their covenants; if they will
          foreswear themselves; if they will trample under foot the
          constitution and institutions of our common country, (which they
          are sworn to defend and maintain) in their over-zeal to destroy
          the Saints, they must have their agency so to do. They must have
          the privilege of working out their own salvation, or their own
          damnation. They must fill up the cup of their iniquity;
          otherwise, how will the Lord be justified in wasting them away
          and destroying them out of the earth, except they first fill up
          the cup of their iniquity. But, says one, what and if He shall
          permit them to overrun and lay waste and scatter and destroy the
          Latter-day Saints? Such questions have been asked a great many
          times in years that have gone by, by those that were fearful, or
          doubtful, or unbelieving; but questions of this kind need not
          arise in the breasts of those who are living as Saints ought to
          live, and have the testimony of Jesus dwelling in them. We ought
          to know, yea, it is our duty to feel that abiding trust and
          confidence in God, to know that He will make the wrath of the
          wicked to praise Him, and the residue of wrath He will restrain;
          and that neither Congress, nor Presidents, nor Senators, nor
          Judges, nor Governors, nor armies, nor Generals, nor any other
          human being have or can exercise any power in the earth, except
          that which is given them of our Father in the heavens, and that
          He can restrain when it seemeth Him good, and within such limits
          as seemeth Him good. And this He does without interfering with
          their personal agency; for man may propose, but God only disposes
          the affairs of men.
          May God help us to be in deed and in truth what we have been
          called to be--Saints of the last days, and then, whether in life
          or death, we shall be His, we shall enter into His glory and be
          numbered with His jewels; for the Lord cometh to make up; His
          jewels, and it will be those who have met together often and have
          spoken often one to another, that will be numbered therein; while
          all the proud and they that do wickedly, will become as stubble;
          and the day that cometh shall burn them up, that it shall leave
          them neither root nor branch.
          May the grace of God be sufficient for us under all
          circumstances, through Jesus Christ our Lord.--Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 / John
          Morgan, January 20th, 1884
                           John Morgan, January 20th, 1884
                           DISCOURSE BY ELDER JOHN MORGAN,
            Delivered in the Assembly Hall, Salt Lake City, January 20th,
                              Reported by John Irvine.
          "Therefore, leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let
          us go on to perfection; not laying again the foundation of
          repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God;
          "Of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of
          resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment."
          I have read the first and second verses of the 6th chapter of
          Paul's epistle to the Hebrews.
          Having been requested to occupy a portion of the time allotted to
          our afternoon service, I desire an interest in your faith and
          prayers and confidence, that I may be enabled to say those things
          which will be acceptable to our common Father and God in the
          heavens, and will be for our good.
          The Latter-day Saints who have congregated together this
          afternoon for religious worship, come for a particular specified
          object, having in view the strengthening of their spiritual
          natures, the receiving of light, intelligence and knowledge from
          on high on matters that pertain unto eternal life. To enable us
          to accomplish this object, it is necessary that we draw in our
          minds from the things by which we are surrounded, and endeavor to
          concentrate our faith upon the duties which devolve upon us in
          religious worship. And it is no meaningless phrase when an Elder
          of Israel asks the faith and prayers of Israel in his behalf,
          that he may be clothed upon by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit
          to say those things that will be for the good of the people.
          We have laid down here, certain principles of the Gospel that
          Paul taught to the Hebrews nearly 2,000 years ago, but principles
          that were not new even in that day; on the contrary, principles
          of eternal truth which have always existed, that always will
          exist, which cannot be changed in their form, cannot be
          annihilated through the unbelief of the human family; for they
          are self-existent and do not depend upon the belief or unbelief
          of men for their sustenance or for their destruction. In this
          consists their greatness, that they are not dependent upon the
          arm of flesh for their existence; for they were just as true when
          rejected by the Hebrews in days of old as they were in times
          before that, as they are to-day--accepted by a few of the human
          family, but rejected by the great mass. The Latter-day Saints,
          then, feel to congratulate themselves upon this point--that they
          have built their faith upon a rock which cannot be destroyed, and
          that will exist not only through the ages of time, but throughout
          all the endless ages of eternity. Having existed in eternity in
          the past, it exists to-day, and will exist in the eternities to
          These principles are plain and simple, so plain and so simple
          that a wayfaring man though a fool need not err therein; on the
          contrary they are suited to the capacity of the whole human
          family, the unlearned as well as the learned. There was this
          peculiar feature about these principles when they were
          promulgated in the days of Jesus: as a rule it was the unlearned
          of the human family that were willing to yield obedience to them;
          it was the common people who heard him gladly. The teachers of
          the Jews, they who had control of the synagogues, who stood in
          the foremost places in the nation, rejected the lowly Nazarene
          and His teachings, while fishermen from the shores of the Sea of
          Galilee heard and received Him gladly. That peculiar feature to a
          greater or less extent adheres to those principles to-day.
          Gathered from the middle walks of life, from the various nations
          of the earth, coming from the east and from the west, from the
          north and from the south, for the Gospel's sake; gathered
          together in these valleys of the mountains, the Latter-day Saints
          are willing to sacrifice the good opinion of the world; willing
          to sacrifice all that man holds near and dear to him for the sake
          of the truth; willing to forsake kindred and home, the graves of
          our ancestors, and those associations that bind themselves round
          the heart--coming here for the sole purpose of being instrumental
          in the hands of God in establishing His Kingdom, in bringing to
          pass His purposes, in proclaiming the glad tidings of the
          Gospel--tidings that were proclaimed to the shepherds upon the
          plains of Bethlehem 1,800 years ago, "on earth peace, good will
          toward men;" bringing with us a broad charity and philanthropy
          for the world, desiring to better the human family, and allowing
          our charity to go out broader than that even--reaching behind the
          veil, taking hold upon the things pertaining not only to this
          life, but redeeming those who have preceded us into the spirit
          world--allowing our charity to go out so broad that we give a
          possible salvation to every son and daughter of Adam that ever
          came upon the face of the earth, or that shall come.
          Paul calls those principles that I have read over, "the doctrine
          of Christ." He calls one of those principles the doctrine of
          repentance. The Latter-day Saints who have gathered from the
          nations of the earth will bear me out when I say that the
          doctrine of repentance as believed in by them is different in
          many respects to the doctrine of repentance as it existed in the
          lands from whence they came. As the Latter-day Saints understand
          the doctrine of repentance, it is to turn from that which is
          wrong; to forsake evil and cleave unto that which is good. If a
          man has been a wrong doer, let him be a wrong-doer no longer; let
          him conform his life to the principles of integrity and
          righteousness and honor; let him keep the commandments of God in
          their letter and in their spirit. I care not what the professions
          of a man may be; I care not with what air of sanctity he may be
          clothed; without the observance of this law in its true sense, it
          is not repentance.
          Paul speaks of another principle which he calls faith; and in the
          11th chapter of his epistle to the Hebrews, he gives some
          information in regard to its nature and character. He says: "Who
          through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained
          promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the violence of
          fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made
          strong, waxed valiant in fight. Women received their dead raised
          to life again," etc. Faith certainly is a most important
          principle, and without it, I ask the Latter-day Saints how long
          could we exist as a body? I have often heard the remark made by
          those unacquainted with the Gospel, those who knew not the truth,
          but yet who were willing to look dispassionately, yea, even
          kindly upon the errors and fallacies as they termed them and
          believed them to be that we are indulging in--the question has
          been asked by this class of persons: "How does it come, by what
          process is it that the Latter-day Saints, surrounded as they have
          been, surrounded as they are to-day, environed around about upon
          every side by difficulties that seen insurmountable, difficulties
          and obstacles that might cause, apparently, the stoutest heart to
          quake and the firmest knees to tremble--that in their hour of
          trial and tribulation they always had confidence that in the
          outcome, it would all be well with Israel, that no matter what
          might be done, it would in the end prove for the good of the
          Kingdom of God, until, the motto, 'They can do nothing against,
          but only for us,' has become a household word in the midst of the
          Saints?" Why, when the powers and influences of the world are
          brought to bear upon the Latter-day Saints, whether collectively
          or in an individual capacity, they cling to this principle of
          faith; they believe in the promises of the God of Israel; they
          believe that God will not falsify His word; they believe that God
          will establish His Kingdom, and bring to pass His purposes in the
          earth. The faith of the Latter-day Saints is a living principle.
          A Latter-day Saint devoid of the principle of faith, would be an
          anomaly--in fact such an one could not be a Latter-day Saint; for
          it requires faith in the God of Israel to stand the tests that
          they are called upon to pass through. Yet calmly and quietly,
          deliberately, with full confidence in Jehovah, they can go forth
          in the discharge of their duties as they understand them,
          believing that in the outcome God will be their friend and
          protector in the future as He has been in the past; as He has
          brought them through the trials and tribulations of days gone by,
          so will he do in the future. This principle of faith, therefore,
          that Paul taught to the Hebrews, was certainly a most important
          one, and it is one without which it would be impossible for the
          Latter-day Saints to have succeeded.
          Paul also speaks of the doctrine of baptisms; not in the
          singular, but in the plural, apparently, as though there were two
          baptisms. "The doctrine of baptisms," he says. We find, following
          after the principles of faith and repentance, the doctrine of
          baptism for the remission of sins, as John the forerunner of
          Jesus taught, as Paul taught, and as Jesus himself taught. It is
          upon record here that they taught baptism for the remission of
          sins, of those who would submit to the ordinance of baptism. Or,
          in other words, to more clearly explain what I wish to, the sins
          of human beings up till the age at which they are baptized are
          recorded against them. If they are willing to submit to the
          ordinance of baptism by immersion, having faith in God, repenting
          of their sins, by one having authority, God gives them His
          promise that He will remit their sins; that all that have been
          committed in the past shall be blotted out from the book of His
          remembrance, and from that day forth they are free from the sins
          of the past. The ordinance of baptism, then, is not an ordinance
          to us of mere form, or something that is submitted to simply
          because it is an ordinance of the Church. On the contrary, it is
          positively essential to the salvation of the human family.
          Nicodemus, in times of old, came to Jesus upon this subject, and
          apparently asked Him the question, If there was some other
          possibly better method whereby man could enter the Kingdom of
          God, and he was told by the Redeemer, that no man could enter the
          Kingdom of God, except he had been born of the water and of the
          Spirit." This is the law as it is laid down. If there is any
          difference of opinion upon the part of any single individual on
          this subject, it is not with me, but it is with the word of God,
          as given through His Son Jesus Christ,--that except a man be born
          of the water and of the spirit he can in no wise enter the
          Kingdom of God. The Latter-day Saints believe this, and act
          accordingly--that except a man be born again he could not even
          see the Kingdom of God, let alone enter therein. The ordinance of
          baptism for the remission of sins is, then, to Latter--day Saints
          a very important ordinance.
          Paul speaks of another ordinance that he terms the "laying on of
          hands." I have found in traveling in the midst of the Christian
          world, that very often Christian people would agree with me in
          relation to the principles of which I have spoken. They would
          say: "Yes, we believe that idea of faith is correct; we believe
          that idea of repentance is correct; we believe that idea of
          baptism even is correct; but they were not strong enough
          apparently to believe in this principle called the "laying on of
          hands," which Paul terms one of the doctrines of Christ. We find
          that this principle is practiced in the midst of the Latter-day
          Saints as also an essential ordinance--that except a man be
          baptized in water and born of the Spirit, by the laying on of
          hands, he can in no wise enter the Kingdom of God. This is the
          light, we are told, that is given to every soul that comes upon
          the earth; not to the Latter-day Saints alone, not to the
          former-day Saints alone, not to those alone who were baptized,
          but to every soul that cometh upon the earth. The ordinance of
          baptism for the remission of sins being essential, so is the
          ordinance of the laying on of hands, that men may receive the
          Holy Spirit; or, in other words, the laying on of hands is the
          medium that God has instituted for His children to be placed in
          communication with Himself, that they may receive the Spirit that
          leads and guides and directs unto all truth, that brings things
          past to our remembrance, that shows us things to come, that opens
          up the visions of heaven and makes known unto us the mind and
          will of God. I remember one minister with whom I had the
          privilege of conversing upon this principle. He stated that it
          looked reasonable; that he did not know really but what it was
          correct, and doubtless had been neglected in times gone by. Well,
          he got to thinking over the matter, and he read, "He will show
          you things to come." He came to me with some questions. One was,
          "Do you mean to say the Holy Spirit will show a man things to
          come?" "Yes." Well, of course if it shewed me things to come I
          could tell of it?" "Yes." "Would not that constitute me a
          prophet?" "It would." "Well," said he, "this generation will not
          endure this thing; it is too strong doctrine." I replied that no
          generation that I had ever read or heard of had endured it; but
          that in all the ages gone by when God had placed men here upon
          the earth with authority to confer this gift, they had invariably
          been rejected of men. This principle is believed in and practices
          by the Latter-day Saints. We read in one instance, that is
          doubtless fresh in the minds of many of the Latter-day Saints--as
          contained in the 8th Chapter of the Acts of the Apostles--where
          certain men had been baptized; but they had to send for the
          Apostles to go into the portion of country where those baptisms
          had occurred, and we read: "Then laid they their hands on them
          and they received the Holy Ghost." The Latter-day Saints believe
          that not only was that principle efficacious in that direction in
          that day, but that it is true to-day as then. The Latter-day
          Saints bear testimony of its truth; that having repented of their
          sins, having faith in God, having been baptized, having received
          the laying on of hands, they have received the Holy Spirit, they
          have received knowledge, light and intelligence from on high,
          that God has reveled to them certain principles of truth and
          righteousness. If this is the case, I ask, how can we unlearn
          these things? How can we unknow them at the dictation of the
          world? Will fines and imprisonment take this knowledge away from
          us? Will disfranchisement take this knowledge away from us? Will
          death itself take this knowledge away from us? No, verily, I say
          to you, it will not. It is with us here to-day; it will be and
          abide with us when we go hence. The knowledge I have in relation
          to this principle--of which I bear my testimony to you this
          day--that I received through the laying of hands, I expect to
          retain with me so long as I live in accordance with the laws and
          principles of truth and righteousness. When I turn away from
          these, there may be a veil of darkness drawn over my mind; but I
          can never free myself from the fact that I had once a knowledge
          of the things of God.
          These four principles are termed the first principles of the
          Gospel of the Son of God. These principles the Latter-day Saints
          believe in. These were the principles that were enunciated by
          Joseph Smith, 50 years ago. These were the principles, and about
          the only principles at that time--very nearly the only
          principles--in the original organization of the Church--that were
          taught to the world.
          But let us reflect in relation to the record and history of that
          day. Men tell us that a certain doctrine we believe in to-day--a
          doctrine that has been taught and revealed at more recent
          date--is the cause of our difficulty. But I ask you, were not
          difficulties met by the Latter-day Saints, in the early history
          of the Church, such as we meet to-day? Were they not driven and
          tossed to and fro? Were they not subject to persecution and
          death, to fines and imprisonment? Were they not cast out from the
          Christian world in that day before this obnoxious--as they term
          it--principle was revealed? Were they not cast out for the
          doctrine of faith in the God of Israel, for the doctrine of
          repentance, turning from wrong doing, for the doctrine of baptism
          for the remission of sins, for the doctrine of the gift of the
          Holy Ghost by the laying on of hands? Were the Saints persecuted
          formerly? So they are to-day; and doubtless this will continue
          until one or the other power is vanquished; for this is not a
          struggle between a few people, citizens of the United States, who
          live here in the Territory of Utah, and in the surrounding States
          and Territories, to the number of 150,000 or 200,000 people, and
          the people of the world. It is not a contest between these two
          parties, by any means, no more than it was a contest between
          Luther, when, at the Diet at Worms, he exclaimed: "Here I take my
          stand. I can do no more and no less." It was not a contest
          between him individually and the priests, but it was a contest
          between truth and error, right and wrong. It was a contest
          between the advancement of the human family and their
          retrogression. This conflict to-day cannot be narrowed down to
          the few people who live in the Territory of Utah. But running out
          from here as veins and arteries from the human heart, it
          penetrates and permeates the whole universe, going from the
          rivers to the ends thereof, and to all the nations of the human
          family. This struggle which we are engaged in to-day, the
          struggle that Joseph Smith was engaged in 50 years ago, in the
          infancy of this work; the clash of opinion and the conflict of
          ideas that existed in the days of Nauvoo, that exists to-day; all
          this does not pertain alone to the Latter-day Saints, my friends,
          but, on the contrary, to the good, to the salvation and to the
          redemption of the whole human family--broader in its scope,
          mightier in its influence than it is generally acknowledged to
          be. Then, can this conflict cease at the command of men? Can laws
          be passed to stop this struggle? Is it in the power of kingdoms
          and principalities and governments to stay the onward march and
          progress of the principles of truth? No more than it was in times
          gone by when the march of thought in its onward progress was
          sought to be stayed by the hand of the mother church from Rome.
          No more to-day than it could in the days when the Puritans in
          England, when the Huguenots in France, asked the privilege of
          worshiping God according to the dictates of their own conscience;
          and almost as a parody on human nature, when these very same
          Puritans came to the land of America, they in turn could turn
          upon the Quakers and persecute them for religion's sake, bore
          holes through the tongues of the people that did not agree with
          them in religious matters. But what did all this accomplish? The
          world looks back--the Christian world looks back with shame upon
          this record of their ancestors, and yet in turn they do the very
          same thing to-day, to be followed in a generation or two by
          people whose faces will mantle with the blush of shame, that in
          this free land of America, under a government established for the
          freedom of the human family, where the religious exile, the exile
          for thought and ideas, from the nations of the earth could come
          to for protection; that in this land dedicated to freedom and
          equality to all men there should have found footing the idea that
          men must be persecuted for religion's sake, for belief's sake.
          Let the Latter-day Saints then, understand and comprehend that
          this struggle which we are engaged in, broadens out and extends
          itself not to us alone, but to the nations of the earth, to the
          whole human family. I imagine I hear some one say, "But is not
          that a contradiction. You asserted a few moments ago that baptism
          was essential to the salvation of the human family, and as there
          has been but a very few of the human family baptized, how is it
          with the rest who have not had the privilege of this ordinance?
          Paul very correctly wrote, and the translators very correctly
          translated this passage that I read, wherein he refers to the
          doctrine of baptisms, for there is more than one baptism. We read
          of the baptism of water for the remission of sin. We read of
          another baptism; for as I have already quoted, except a man be
          born of the water and of the spirit, he can in no wise enter into
          the Kingdom of God. Then we ask ourselves the question, What
          shall become of the untold millions of the human family who have
          not heard the sound of the Gospel? What shall we do with those
          who have not even heard anything relative to the plan of
          salvation? Our Christian friends, for instance, devote many
          thousands of dollars and pounds sterling to the conversion of the
          heathen as they are pleased to call them, and to carry the Bible
          to those who are unacquainted with it. This is certainly very
          commendable; this certainly shows a most philanthropic spirit
          upon their part; this is an evidence of good will to the human
          family, and it is to be commended. But inasmuch, as they reach
          but a very few, we ask ourselves the question, What shall become
          of the rest? To the Latter-day Saints this is a solved problem.
          We assert this not simply with the words of our lips; we assert
          this not simply in editorials and pamphlets written; but we prove
          our faith by our works. Almost within the sound of my voice here,
          there is a magnificent temple being erected at the expense of
          many hundreds of thousands of dollars. In the town of St. George
          in the south, at the expense of nearly half a million; at Manti,
          in Sanpete County; at Logan, in Cache; we have four temples
          either completed or nearly so. At Nauvoo, when the Saints were
          storm-tossed with persecution, surrounded about by mobs, and
          every influence that fiendish vindictiveness could think of, was
          brought to bear upon them, they built themselves a magnificent
          temple there. At Kirtland, in the days of their infancy, when the
          labors which they performed were very arduous in comparison with
          the labors the Latter-day Saints have to perform to-day in the
          building of these temples, they built another temple. What are
          these temples for? There is an object in their being built. We
          prove our faith in these things by our works, seeking not only to
          redeem ourselves, seeking not only salvation for our own
          household, but extending its influence beyond and reaching out to
          those of our progenitors who have gone before us into the spirit
          world and are there, becoming acquainted with the principles of
          eternal life; for as recorded in the third Chapter of the Epistle
          of Peter, "Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for
          the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in
          the flesh, but quickened by the spirit: by which also He went and
          preached unto the spirits in prison; which sometime were
          disobedient, when once the long-suffering of God waited in the
          days of Noah." Or as we find it still further recorded in the 4th
          chapter of the same epistle: "For this cause was the Gospel
          preached also to them that are dead that they might be judged
          according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the
          spirit." We also find a question asked of our Savior, as recorded
          in the account of His crucifixion in the book of Saint Luke. One
          of the thieves who was crucified along side of our Savior, said
          to Him: "Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy Kingdom."
          Jesus could not consistently do this; for He had told Nicodemus
          previous to that, that except a man be born of the water and of
          the Spirit he could not enter into His Kingdom; and this thief,
          acknowledging that he was worthy of death, was, consequently, and
          unrepentant, unbaptized sinner. Jesus, however, turned to him and
          said: "To-day thou shalt be with me in paradise." The Christian
          world have made the mistake of imagining, believing and teaching
          that Jesus and the thief on the cross went back to the bosom of
          our Father and God in heaven. But we find, after the resurrection
          of our Savior, when He stood by the open door of the sepulchre,
          Mary came, and recognizing Him, put out her hands to touch Him.
          But Jesus said: "Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my
          Father in heaven; but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I
          ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God and your
          God." During the three days that the body of Jesus lay in the
          tomb, then, where was the spirit that formerly inhabited the
          body? According to the testimony of Peter, as recorded in the 3rd
          Chapter of the first epistle of Peter, it was preaching to the
          spirits in prison; and Isaiah tells us that it was for this that
          Jesus was to come; it was to loose the bonds of the prisoners; it
          was to open the prison-door. Men who had lived in days gone by,
          who had failed to obey the commandments of God, who had passed
          into the spirit world, according to the accepted idea of a few
          years ago--Christian ideas change about these things, you
          know--these people were eternally lost. There was no possible
          chance for their redemption; but having closed their eyes in
          death as sinners in the sight of God, they were under
          condemnation to all eternity. A strange parody indeed upon the
          idea of God's love and mercy for His children! God is love, we
          are told, and yet in the short space of one man's life, that
          man's sins and errors--nay, more than that, he might have lived
          honorably and honestly; he might have sought to do as best he
          knew how; he might have been a good citizen, a good father, a
          good husband; he might have filled all these duties acceptably,
          yet if he is outside the pale of the Church and death overtakes
          him in that condition, he was eternally lost according to the
          Christian idea of a few years ago. Leading thinkers of to-day, in
          the Christian world are changing their views very materially in
          relation to this matter, as within the past few years I heard the
          Rev. Henry Ward Beecher declare, that, if his God reigned in the
          next world, every man and woman who did not learn the truth here,
          should have the privilege there. Then we find also Dr. Thomas, of
          Chicago, a leading light in the religious world, and very many
          who are distinguished in the religious world, are to-day changing
          their ideas and theories in relation to this matter. One of the
          peculiar features connected with the Gospel in days gone by is
          often presented to my mind in this wise: Jesus taught some of His
          doctrines in the midst of the Pharisees and Scribes. They found
          that certain of His doctrines were popular; they found that
          certain of His doctrines were very pleasant; they found that
          certain of His doctrines were very agreeable. And so they did
          what He told them they were doing. They poured new wine into
          their old Pharisee bottles; they endeavored to patch their
          Sadducee coat with a new piece of cloth; but they were told that
          they would burst their bottles, and make a larger rent in their
          coat than there was. So it is to-day. When Mr. Beecher introduces
          to the Christian world the idea that there is a redemption beyond
          the grave, he shakes the pillars of so called Christianity; he
          gives them a mightier blow than could be given by an Elder
          advocating the same doctrine; and when Dr. Thomas, of Chicago,
          advanced that idea to his intelligent audience, it went like wild
          fire over the land that so distinguished a theologian as Dr.
          Thomas, had declared that there was a chance for redemption after
          the grave. This new wine, revealed from heaven in this day and
          Joseph Smith, a man who was despised by the world, is being taken
          by the wise men and poured into their sectarian bottles, and in
          the end the result will be as it was with the Pharisees in times
          gone by.
          But this doctrine has more of a meaning to the Latter-day Saints
          than simply preaching to the spirits in prison. We read here in
          the old Bible where God, speaking through the mouth of one of His
          Prophets, said certain things should transpire in the last days.
          "Behold," says the Lord through His Prophet Malachi, "I will send
          you Elijah the Prophet before the coming of the great and
          dreadful day of the Lord; and he shall turn the hearts of the
          fathers to the children, and the hearts of the children to their
          fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse." So to-day
          the Latter-day Saints testify that God having sent the Prophet
          Elijah to the earth to reveal this principle, or rather to give
          the key for the administration of this principle, the hearts of
          the children here upon the earth are being turned to the fathers
          behind the veil, and the hearts of the fathers behind the veil
          are being turned to their children here upon the earth, the one
          feeling after the other for their redemption; for without them we
          cannot be perfect, neither can they without us. This plan of
          salvation that the Latter-day Saints believe in is broad, indeed
          it reaches out to the whole human family, present, past and
          future. We read in the 15th Chapter of 1st Corinthians, an
          explanation of this expression of Paul's in regard to the two
          baptisms. In the 20th verse of that Chapter he says: "Else what
          shall they do which are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise
          not at all. Why are they then baptized for the dead?" or as Paul
          expresses it in the 19th verse of the same chapter: "If in this
          life only, we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most
          miserable." Paul in preaching to the Corinthians said that very
          few of them took hold of the Gospel. The great mass rejected
          Paul. Paul, however, with that broad philanthropy of heart, lit
          up by the light that first came to him on his way to Damascus,
          would have been miserable indeed had he not learned of this great
          principle that in the spirit world these Corinthians would be
          preached to and taught. So the Latter-day Saints to-day would be
          of all men the most miserable if they did not recognize this
          principle of preaching to spirits in prison and baptism for the
          dead. The Latter-day Saints are fulfilling the Scripture, which
          says that there shall be gathered home to Zion, "one of a city
          and two of a family." In many instances one person of an entire
          lineage is all there is in the Church and Kingdom of God. That
          being the case, what of the fathers and the mothers, the brothers
          and the sisters, the relatives near and dear, who have not had
          the opportunity of accepting the Gospel? How glorious, how grand
          a work it is that swells the hearts of Israel to know that we can
          enter into the temples of the living God and redeem our dead and
          become in truth and indeed saviors upon Mount Zion! Certainly no
          nobler, no grander, no mightier principle has ever been revealed
          to the human family than this. And though we may have doctrines
          that are obnoxious to the world; though we may have principles
          that innovate upon established ideas; though we may have ideas
          that conflict with those of the honest and the good, and those
          who love the principles of integrity and righteousness; though we
          may have all these, yet when we come to reflect in regard to this
          one principle, that of itself alone should be sufficient to
          recommend the Latter-day Saints to the whole civilized world;
          that of itself should blot out from their remembrance those other
          matters that seem to disagree with and are unpleasant to them.
          That principle that is reaching out for the salvation of the
          untold myriads of the human family--the very possibility of it
          should cause the hearts of the whole human family to rejoice,
          should cause them to think, to feel and to act kindly towards a
          people who are seeking to carry out this principle. But human
          nature is very strong in relation to these matters, and as it has
          been in the past doubtless it will be in the future--that through
          much tribulation shall they come up who shall be clothed in robes
          of white, and that it is through trial and tribulation God shall
          have a tried people. The Latter-day Saints do not lay to
          themselves the flattering unction that there shall be peace,
          peace, peace, to us just yet; but that on the contrary this work
          and this struggle will continue; the nations of the earth will be
          brought to the knowledge of the truth; the honest of the blood of
          Israel will be gathered home; the kingdom of God will be built
          up; temples will be erected and the Saints will enter into them
          and redeem their dead, and cause the hearts of our fathers and
          our mothers who have gone before us into the spirit world to
          rejoice; and we shall join hands with the Prophets and Apostles
          of days gone by, with those of to-day who have preceded us behind
          the veil; with the good and the true of all ages; with our Elder
          Brother, Jesus Christ, and with God our Eternal father in the
          heavens--all linked together in one mighty phalanx in this great
          and glorious work of the latter-days. 
          May God bless you. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 / John
          Taylor, February 10, 1884
                           John Taylor, February 10, 1884
                         DISCOURSE BY PRESIDENT JOHN TAYLOR,
                   Delivered in the Assembly Hall, Salt Lake City,
                        Sunday Afternoon, February 10, 1884.
                               Reported by John Irvine
          We meet together from time to time to speak, to sing, to pray,
          and, according to an institution which has been provided, to
          partake of the sacrament of the Lord's supper, and also to
          perform those various duties devolving upon us as servants of the
          living God. It is pleasant for the Saints to meet together to
          commune with each other, to listen to the words of life, to
          reflect also upon their position and relationship to God, to His
          Church and Kingdom, as well as to examine into their own
          feelings, and, under the guidance of the Lord and of His Holy
          Spirit, try to find out what relationship they sustain to their
          Heavenly Father, and whether they are performing the various
          duties devolving upon them, and are seeking to carry out the
          word, the will, and the law of God.
          We are certainly a very peculiar people gathered together in
          these valleys of the mountains; we are assembled here from many
          nations; it would be difficult to say at present how many; but I
          think on some public occasion a while ago, there were twenty-five
          nationalities represented. In this respect, we present a very
          singular aspect, and occupy a very peculiar position in the
          history of the day and age wherein we live. Our religion differs
          very widely from that which exists in the world. Our ideas of
          God, of futurity, of heaven and of hell, and of the future
          destiny of the human family, not only of ourselves, but of all
          nations, differ very materially from that of others. Our social
          ideas, too, are very dissimilar from those entertained by others.
          And, again, our political ideas are not in accord in many
          respects with those of others, and thus we find ourselves in a
          very anomalous position, gathered together here in these valleys
          of the mountains, separated to a great extent from the rest of
          mankind. We were a few years ago very decidedly separated. Now,
          this portion of the continent has become almost the highway of
          the nations. I frequently meet with persons from France, England,
          Ireland, Scotland and Wales, from the various Principalities of
          Germany; from Russia, Italy, Spain, Portugal; from Australia, and
          the Islands of the sea, and from almost all the nations of the
          earth. They pass by here, and hearing that we are a strange sort
          of a people, they are desirous to know something about us as they
          pass through.
          It frequently becomes a question in the minds of many--How and in
          what manner did these things originate, and what is the object of
          our being thus gathered together as a separate and distinct
          people? By what motives are we actuated? The world of mankind,
          whether in this nation, or in any other nation, form very strange
          notions in regard to our reasons for thus gathering together.
          Although we have been striving for a great many years to
          enlighten the world in relation to this and other matters, still
          they seem very much at sea in regard to the position which we
          occupy, and to our moral, social, religious and political status.
          So that it becomes almost impossible for people at a distance
          from here, notwithstanding we profess to live in an age of light
          and intelligence, in an age of railroads, telegraphs, and
          telephones, in an age when rapid communication can be had, say
          from all parts of the earth in one day, in an age of professed
          knowledge of science, literature and art, and of everything that
          is calculated--or ought to be if properly conducted--to promote
          the welfare of the human family; I say that, notwithstanding all
          these things, if there is one subject about which the human
          family to-day is grossly ignorant, it is on the subject of the
          principles of the Latter-day Saints. A short time ago a very
          distinguished European gentleman, after eulogizing the appearance
          of our city, the quiet and order that prevail, etc., said to me,
          "President Taylor you can scarcely conceive how impossible it is,
          outside of your Territory, to obtain correct information
          regarding you as a people;" and an editor of The North American
          Review told me he came here from New York, expressly for the
          purpose of getting me to write an article on our present status,
          thus again exhibiting the strange attitude which we occupy before
          this nation and the world, and demonstrating that in consequence
          of such a flood of falsehood, vituperation and abuse which is
          constantly circulated against us, that is almost impossible, as
          before referred to, to obtain any correct information concerning
          us. Some of the literary men who come along here, express to me
          the opinion that we have been maligned and misrepresented a good
          deal. I tell them that in an age like this people ought to know
          better; that they ought to be better informed; that they ought to
          make themselves acquainted with facts within the reach of
          everybody; and that there is no excuse for ignorance in relation
          to these matters. Still this ignorance continues. There is an
          under-current that men generally are not acquainted with, which
          operates in the minds of men and produces these results of which
          I speak at the present time. To the Latter-day Saints there is
          nothing very mysterious about this. We have passed through this
          state of things in embryo, years and years ago. Many of you
          thought, when you heard the Gospel, and your hearts had been made
          glad by obedience thereunto, that all you would have to do would
          be to tell your particular friends and relatives of these things,
          and that it would cause their hearts to rejoice as it did yours.
          You felt interested in their welfare and had a desire to promote
          their happiness, that they might rejoice with you in the
          blessings which you experienced through obedience to the Gospel.
          But lo and behold! the moment you opened your mouthon this
          subject, you were set down as impostors. You were probably before
          this a decent man or a decent woman; but now you became
          ostracized and cut off in many instances from association even
          with members of your own family. Was it because you had become
          corrupt? No. Was it because you had become unsocial? No. Was it
          because you possessed principles that were at variance with the
          principles of truth, virtue, honor, and the word of God? No. And
          if you had asked them what the reason was, for their coolness and
          the feeling of ostracism that they manifested, they could not
          tell, only that you were a "Mormon." You have all of you
          experienced this. If this is the case, then, with your most
          intimate friends--with your relatives, with your fathers and
          mothers, sons and daughters, uncles and aunts, with whom you had
          been on the most friendly terms heretofore--how can you expect
          the world to look at things in any different manner. I reflect
          sometimes upon the position occupied by the ancient Christians,
          and upon the character, position and standing of Jesus, the Son
          of God. We all profess to reverence Him. All Christendom bows in
          reverence at the mention of His name; they feel there is
          something hallowed about it. They look upon Him as being the Son
          of God, and they look upon His Apostles as men of unblemished
          reputation, of pure lives, holy, virtuous and upright. You cannot
          travel anywhere in Christendom but you find churches erected to
          St. Paul, St. Peter, to St. John, to St. Matthew, to St. Luke,
          and to all the different saints as they are now called by the
          people. But how was it with these saints when they lived here
          upon the earth? They were called disturbers of the peace. It was
          said of them that they were stirrers up of sedition--that they
          were impure, ungodly men. The idea of their being persecuted, as
          we read of, for their religion, would have been altogether
          preposterous in that day. They would tell you they were
          prosecuted for their crimes and their iniquities. They were
          brought before rulers, kings and judges, and they had to depend
          upon the Lord and His Holy Spirit, to sustain them under those
          circumstances. Jesus emphatically told them to expect these
          things. "If the world hate you, " said He, "ye know that it hated
          me before it hated you * * * * If they have persecuted me, they
          will also persecute you * * * For if they do these things in a
          green tree, what shall be done in the dry?" It is singular, yet
          it is a fact that these things did exist. While the crowds were
          ready sometimes to cover his path with olive branches and with
          their garments, and to shout "Hosanna? Blessed is he that cometh
          in the name of the Lord," yet with the very next breath they were
          ready to cry, "Crucify Him! crucify Him! it is not fit that He
          should live." And when He was hounded and hunted, persecuted and
          proscribed, at the very last, even when a Roman judge said, "What
          evil hath he done?" and washed his hands of the blood of this
          just person, they still continued to cry, "Let Him be crucified,"
          and Barabbas, a noted thief, and a murderer, was released in
          preference to Jesus. This was the kind of feeling manifested
          toward the Savior. Were they an ignorant people that thus treated
          Him? No. They were what were called the elite of the day, the
          educated; men of position, the High Priests, the scribes, the
          Pharisees, the doctors, the lawyers, the leading men of the
          nation, all of them engaged in this thing, and all of them
          partook of the same spirit. What was the cause of this? It was
          because He was not of the world. "If ye were of the world," said
          the Savior to His disciples, "the world would love his own: but
          because ye are not of the world, therefore the world hateth you."
          That is the cause. The world loveth its own. And the world is
          to-day, was then, and always will be, until it shall be
          regenerated, opposed to God, opposed to righteousness and opposed
          to the principles of truth. Paul makes the following statement:
          "For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded
          is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is at enmity against
          God; for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can
          be." There is nothing new, therefore, in any of these matters
          that we hear bruted around from place to place--from the east to
          the west, from the north to the south, and spreading abroad among
          the nations of the earth; nothing new, nothing strange, nothing
          very remarkable in any of these things. The carnal mind knows not
          the things of God, and is not subject to the law of God, neither
          can it be. They form all kinds of opinions, even, with regard to
          our gathering. "Why don't you stop at home as other folks do?"
          Some say that it is an emigration scheme gotten up to make money,
          and that missionaries are sent out by us to deceive the weak and
          the ignorant, and to gather them together that they may be made
          merchandise of. That is one idea. You all know how far that is
          true, and how far it is false. Others say that we re gathered
          here for licentious purposes--to carry out polygamic ideas, to
          corrupt, demoralize, and trample under foot the women who come
          and associate with us, and to destroy their virtue; whereas you
          know there is not a place in the world where women are better
          protected and their virtue more sacredly guarded than in Utah.
          They compare plural marriage to their whoredom, seductions, their
          social evils, and the many kinds of iniquity, corruption and
          rottenness that prevail among themselves. Reasoning from their
          own stand point, they consider that we are a very wicked, corrupt
          and licentious people. But according to the statistics that we
          have pertaining to these matters, our immorality is twenty to
          forty times less than theirs here in our midst, without going any
          further. The crimes, iniquities and corruptions committed by the
          small minority of outsiders in our midst very far exceed, perhaps
          by twenty to thirty times, the crimes of the Latter-day Saints.
          This excess of crime on the part of outsiders is what might be
          reasonably expected; for we profess to be a better people, and we
          ought to be a better people than those who make no pretentious to
          be guided by divine revelation. Examine the records of our city
          jail, of the Penitentiary, of the county prisons, which have been
          published and are being published, and you will find a full
          statement in relation to these matters, and the per cent of crime
          that exists between one and the other. Mr. Barclay, a member of
          the British Parliament, who lately visited us, writes in "The
          Nineteenth Century," a monthly review published in London: "In
          the winter of 1881, a census was taken of the prisons in Utah,
          with the following results:--In the City Prison were twenty-nine
          convicts, and in the county prison six convicts, all non-Mormons.
          In the Penitentiary, out of fifty-one prisoners only five were
          Mormons, two of whom were there for polygamy. * * Of the
          population of Salt Lake City, about 75 per cent is Mormon, and 25
          per cent non-Mormon." He further says: "These figures
          conclusively prove that the Mormons are a sober, law-abiding
          people, and singularly free from the grosser forms of vice;
          whatever may be alleged by ignorant or prejudiced enemies. Of the
          two hundred saloons, billiard, bowling alley, and pool table
          keepers, not a dozen even profess Mormonism." And since these
          figures were published, others in relation to 1882 have been made
          public. One gentleman, who has spent a considerable length of
          time investigating these matters, writes: "The statistics at hand
          for 1882 * * cover a wide field, taking in all the populous
          districts of the Territory. The total number of all arrests for
          crimes and misdemeanors in these localities during 1882, was
          2,198--of which the 78 per cent of the Mormon population
          furnished 300, and the 22 per cent of the non-Mormons 1,898, * *
          So that the Mormons comprising 78 per cent of the population of
          the Territory contributed one-eight of the arrests made during
          1882 and the non-Mormons, having only 22 per cent contributed
          seven-eights. The number of brothels throughout the Territory was
          12, all kept by non-Mormons."
          Regarding Salt Lake City, where he resided for some time, he
          states: "The criminal record of Salt Lake City, for 1882, shows
          that in a population of about 25,000, divided between Mormons and
          non-Mormons as 19 to 6, the total number of arrests was 1,561, of
          which 188 were Mormons and 1,373 non-Mormons. Of the 66 houses,
          where beer and liquor were retailed by the glass, 60 were kept by
          non-Mormons, and the remaining 6, nominally Mormons, were not
          entitled to participate in the sacraments of the Church by reason
          of their calling. The 15 billiard rooms and bowling alleys, and
          the 7 gambling houses were all kept by non-Mormons. The 6
          brothels had non-Mormons proprietors, and they were filled by 31
          non-Mormon inmates." There is nothing in this to be proud of; for
          it would be a pity if we could not live better than they do. We
          have gathered here, not for speculative purposes, as is sometimes
          charged, but to worship God, to keep His commandments, and to be
          instructed in the laws of life. There is no cause for boasting on
          our part in regard to these things; but I refer to them to show
          how fallacious their ideas are in regard to these matters.
          Then, is it strange that we should be placed in the position that
          we are? Yes, it is very strange, but it is nevertheless true, and
          the same condition of things has existed in the different ages.
          We profess to be the followers of the Lord Jesus Christ; we
          profess to be in possession of the everlasting Gospel; we profess
          to have gathered here to observe the laws and keep the
          commandments of God, and that we might assist in building up the
          Church of God, the Kingdom of God, and the Zion of God. These are
          really the facts of the case. True, we do not do as well as we
          might. We are not as pure as we might be, nor as good, nor as
          virtuous, nor as upright, nor do we possess the amount of
          integrity that we ought; but, then, we don't propose to place
          ourselves on a level with the outside world; we have not dropped
          to their standard by a very long way: and many of us are striving
          to live our religion, to observe the laws of God, and to keep His
               In regard to the spirit and genius of the age in which we
          live, there is nothing, as I have said, strange about that. The
          powers of darkness have always been in antagonism to the light,
          truth and intelligence that proceeds from God, and till Satan is
          bound, and his power is curtailed by a superior power, that state
          of things will continue, and instead of getting better and
          better, we are told in the Scriptures, that the wicked shall grow
          worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived. Do you imagine
          that they will grow better? I do not.
          Do not let us be mistaken in relation to all these things--that
          is as the world are mistaken. We complain sometimes about the
          injustice of men. I expect to find unjust men, many of them. We
          refer to certain laws that are being enacted by our Congress as
          unconstitutional, etc. Why, we expect they will yet pass many
          laws of that kind. We don't expect them to be our friends, or the
          friends of God. They don't profess it. We have a right to expect,
          of course, that they would abide by the Constitution, because
          that is an instrument gotten up by themselves, and that they
          profess to be governed by, and that men in authority swear to
          uphold. We have a right to expect that. But, then, does not all
          Christendom profess to believe in the Bible? Yes. And do the
          ministers of the various denominations? Yes. Do they practice its
          teachings. Do they follow its doctrines? Or are there any two of
          their doctrines alike? They have all kinds of theories, notions
          and ideas; yet still they tell you that the Bible contains the
          word of God. But are they governed by it? No. God placed in the
          Church Apostles, Prophets, Pastors, Teachers and Evangelists, and
          He gave unto His servants the Holy Ghost, and the light of
          revelation, and made them acquainted with the same sacred
          principles. They were all baptized unto one baptism, and all
          partook of the same spirit. How is it now? Many Lords, many
          faiths, many baptisms.
          Speaking of the doctrine of the plurality of wives, I remember
          talking with one of our Presidents--I mean one of the Presidents
          of the United States--on this subject in Washington, a number of
          years ago, as I have with others since on the same subject; but I
          remember some of the remarks made on that occasion. "Well," said
          he, after talking some little on politics, and one thing and
          another, "what about your polygamy?" "Mr. Pierce," said I,--I can
          mention his name now as it is a thing of the past--"it may be
          possible that some of us may have wrong ideas in regard to these
          things. We read about such a man as Abraham, who is described as
          'the friend of God;' we read about such a man as David, who is
          described as 'a man after God's own heart:' we read about Jacob,
          who had twelve sons, whose names are to be written upon the
          twelve gates of the holy city. Who was Jacob? He was a man who
          had several wives, by whom he had these twelve sons. Then we read
          of Moses--a man of God, a leader of Israel, and a law-giver. He
          told the people how they should treat their children whether by
          the first wife or by the second, and how all these matters were
          to be arranged. "Mr. Pierce," said I, "It is possible that we of
          the nineteenth century, have not been able to instruct the Lord
          very much in regard to these matters. Probably He knew just as
          much about them then as we do now, and that in regard to our
          marital laws, we may have made some mistakes. "Well," said Mr.
          Pierce, "I cannot say." Of course he could not.
          Now, then, men assume to judge the acts of others, but they don't
          judge their own acts, and they strive to falsify us, and to make
          evils of those things that God has ordained according to His
          economy, and that men of old, who were considered men of God, and
          the friends of God, practiced under His direction. It is not
          uncommon for men to talk about Abraham. They would like to get
          into Abraham's bosom--that is most of the Christians of the
          present day would like to have a place in Abraham's bosom. Would
          you? Would you really? Are there any of that class here that
          would like to go unto Abraham's bosom? Why, should you have your
          wish, when you woke up you would find you were in the bosom of a
          polygamist, and would not that be very horrible? But that would
          be the fact. Jesus Himself, was a descendant of that class of
          people who had practiced the things that we to-day believe in.
          But they didn't persecute Him because He was a polygamist. They
          persecuted Him because He was a friend of publicans and sinners.
          They accused Him of being a blasphemer, of casting out devils
          through the power of Beelzebub, the prince of devils. If he did
          any good act at all, they were ready to cry out, "Give God the
          praise: we know that this man is a sinner."
          These things are facts that we cannot ignore. They stand out
          before us in living characters, and to use a very trite saying,
          "history repeats itself" in regard to these things. The same
          causes in one age generally produce the same results on another
          I will now tell you about some of my feelings when I first came
          into this Church. It is a long while ago. When I first heard the
          Gospel I was compelled to admit there was something reasonable
          about it. I almost hoped it was not true. "If it is true," said
          I, "as an honest man I shall be obliged to obey it, or else I
          cannot have any confidence in myself." When I had investigated
          the subject, and become convinced that it was true, I said, "I am
          in for it; I must embrace it; I cannot reject the principles of
          eternal truth;" and I will say, moreover, I don't know of a time
          in my life when if anybody presented a truth that could not be
          controverted, but I was ready to obey it; and I am to-day. If any
          person in the religious world, or the political world, or the
          scientific world, will present to me a principle that is true, I
          am prepared to receive it, no matter where it comes from. Well,
          says one, you believe the Bible? Yes. You believe in the Book of
          Mormon? Yes. You believe the Book of Doctrine and Covenants? Yes.
          I believe all that God has ever written or spoken, everything
          that we have on record, and I am prepared to believe every thing
          that He will communicate to the human family. We profess to
          believe in all truth, and to be governed by all truth.
          Then, in regard to our position--referring to that again--we are
          gathered here from the different nations of the earth, from
          England and elsewhere. I remember the time very well when the
          Gospel was not preached in England. I remember when Brothers
          Heber C. Kimball, Orson Hyde, Wilford Woodruff, myself and others
          took our first mission to England. Many of you that are here,
          whose heads are white like mine, will remember the circumstances.
          We took our departure after laying the corner-stone of the Temple
          in Far West, Caldwell County, Missouri. The people were much
          excited about the Mormons at that time just as they are now, and
          every once in a while. They had gotten up a furore against us;
          and Joseph Smith, Hyrum Smith, Bishop McRae, and others, were
          seized by a mob and imprisoned; and many of you may have read the
          remarks made by a certain General Clark--the famous, or rather
          infamous General Clark. He told the people--the same as they tell
          us now--that it was wrong to gather as they were then doing, and
          as we are now doing, and place ourselves under Bishops, etc. and
          said he,--I heard him--"Oh, that I could invoke the spirit of the
          unknown God to rest upon you, that you may be delivered from the
          delusions with which you are encompassed." But his "unknown God"
          didn't hear him, and the "delusions" have still gone on. We had
          been driven out of Missouri. They were so good a people and so
          virtuous, and we were so bad. But we were not polygamists then;
          we had not entered into the awful crime of polygamy; but we dared
          to worship God according to the dictates of our own conscience.
          They drove us out, took possession of our property, and robbed
          and pillaged everyone they could. After doing this they did not
          like that their action should go out to the world; so the
          legislature actually made an appropriation for us--that is, for
          the poor "Mormons"--of $2,000, if my memory serves me aright.
          They had killed and destroyed any amount of our cattle and hogs,
          and anything and everything of that kind that they came across.
          Still they pretended to be very sorry for us, and solicitous for
          our welfare. In order that we might not suffer, they went into an
          adjoining county where our people lived, stole a lot of hogs from
          them, and then turned in those hogs to make up the appropriation
          made by the legislature of Missouri! They were so liberal in
          their operations! They stole the hogs from one portion of our
          people, and then gave them to another. I saw the hogs come in,
          and they were butchered and divided among the Mormons.
          These are some of the things that I am acquainted with. Was I
          surprised when I saw such operations? No. I expected when I came
          into this Church, that I should be persecuted and proscribed. I
          expected that the people would be persecuted. But I believed that
          God had spoken, that the eternal principles of truth had been
          revealed, and that God had a work to accomplish which was in
          opposition to the ideas, views and notions of men, and I did not
          know but it would cost me my life before I got through. It came
          pretty near it at one time; yes, at many times. I have had to
          "stand the racket" in a way that many of you folks don't know
          much about. More than once I have had to face large crowds of
          people in the shape of armies, expecting to come into contact
          every moment--no farther off, perhaps, than the length of this
          hall. That is not a very pleasant position to be in. But I was in
          a worse scrape in Carthage jail, when Joseph and Hyrum were
          killed--penned up in a room and attacked by a blackened mob. I
          had to stand at the door and ward off the guns while they were
          trying to shoot us, and we without arms, and under the protection
          of the Governor of the State. Dr. Bernhisel and myself were sent
          by Joseph Smith to wait upon the Governor, and lay before him the
          facts of the case. We told him we were competent to take car of
          ourselves, and did not require any of his aid, for we had an
          organized body of militia that were quite competent to protect us
          from their mobs, and asked his advice. He thereupon stated it
          would be better for us not to bring an armed force, and pledged
          his faith and the faith of the State, as Governor, for our
          protection. We consented. This he said to Dr. Bernhisel and
          myself; and that pledge was violated by the murder of Joseph and
          Hyrum Smith in Carthage jail, and I myself received five balls in
          my person; but then I am here yet.
                 Was there anything surprising in all this? No. If they
          killed Jesus in former times, would not the same feeling and
          influence bring about the same results in these times? I had
          counted the cost when I first started out, and stood prepared to
          meet it.
          We afterwards came to these valleys of the mountains. We people
          have been gathered here and are gathering; but we have had to
          encounter very little of such things as I have referred to. It is
          true, we had what was called the Buchanan war, when we paraded up
          and down, and when we went to Echo, etc. But there was not much
          harm done. It cost the government some forty million dollars,
          from what I learn; but there was no one killed. Two newspaper
          reporters who had been sent out here to report the war, got to
          fighting between themselves, and I remember being called upon by
          one of them to assist him in his trouble in Provo. That is all
          that occurred. We had to go out and meet the army. We marched and
          counter marched--the same as we do in our dances, you know; one
          of those grand marches, marching in and marching out; and finally
          the President sent us a pardon for that which we had never done.
          We did not appreciate it very much. With the exception of that
          little episode, we have not had much trouble. I have heard people
          complain of our judges and our governors, and this, that and the
          other. Why, bless your soul, how can they send better men than
          they have? We need not expect good men, virtuous men, honorable
          men; they can only send such as they have, consequently, we need
          not look for any better.
          Well, what are we to do? They are talking all kinds of loud
          things about us now. They keep on talking. Sometimes they do a
          little; sometimes they don't do much; sometimes they are very
          angry with us, and get up quite a furore. A Presidential election
          is coming on, you know, and they are preparing things for that,
          and the "Mormon question" is as good a thing as they can have on
          both sides of the House--on the republican side, and on the
          democratic, too. "Well," the question is asked, "What are they
          going to do with you?" It don't make much difference. They hardly
          know themselves. They think they are going to do a great deal.
          They will do just what the Lord will let them, and no more. But
          we understand their ideas, I presume, as well as they do. Here
          are two political parties. The republicans long ago put into
          their platform that there were two twin relics that had to be
          moved out of the way--the one was slavery, and the other
          polygamy. They have removed slavery out of the way, but polygamy
          seems to be rather a hard nut for them to crack. It seems to
          bother them. They are in a good deal of trouble about it, and the
          religious people are very much exercised over it. Their pure
          souls are very much agonized about things of that sort, and about
          impurities which exist among the Mormons. They cannot see or say
          anything about the licentiousness, the corruption, the foeticide,
          the infanticide, the rottenness, hypocrisy, lying, fraud and
          deception that exists among themselves; but they think we are a
          very bad people, and in order to purge the nation of so foul a
          blot, they must all unite to put us down. They will just do what
          the Lord will let them, and no more.
          Now, neither of these political parties are our friends. Neither
          of them are the friends of God. They think that we are
          democratic. We are to a certain extent, and then we are
          republicans to a certain extent. But the republicans are afraid
          that the democrats are going to make use of us in some way or
          other, and they are determined to crowd the Mormons down their
          throats, and the democrats gulp at it; they don't like to swallow
          it. It is worse than the apple that stuck in Adam's throat. They
          don't want to shoulder the responsibility, and so the democrats
          will join with the republicans on a question of this kind, just
          the same as the Scribes and Pharisees, the Herodians and
          Sadducees, did when Jesus was to be crucified. Pilate and Herod
          could then be made friends, and they were hail fellows, well met.
          So it is now, and as the Church of England chant says: "As it was
          in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, worlds without end,
          amen," it may continue--at least for a certain length of time.
          What are we to do under those circumstances? Shall we be very
          angry? No. I feel just as easy about it as the boy did about his
          father. Says Tommy, to his companion: "Do you know my daddy?"
          "No, I don't." "Why," said Tommy, "I know him just as e-a-s-y." I
          feel just as easy as the boy did about knowing his daddy.
          We are engaged in a work of importance. We are immortal beings.
          We are dual beings associated with time and eternity; I might say
          associated with the past, the present, and the future. We have a
          work to perform here upon the earth, and with the help of
          Israel's God we expect to do that work.
          I do not wish to defame anybody. But the things I have talked of
          are true. It is a pity they are true, but then they are. What are
          we going to do? Do right. We are called of God to be an upright
          people, a virtuous people, an honorable people. We are called
          upon to maintain correct principles, and to introduce them among
          the peoples of the earth, and especially among the people of this
          nation. Jesus told His disciples to pray in His day, "Thy Kingdom
          come, they will be done on earth as it is in heaven." Did He
          understand what He was saying. I Think He did.
          The Lord has gathered us together in these valleys of the
          mountains, that He might have a people who would be prepared to
          receive the eternal truths of heaven, and be governed by them.
          Instead of your being deceived to get you to come here, you had
          the pure principles of the Gospel of the Son of God preached unto
          you, in the various nations from which you have come. You were
          called upon to repent of your sins, and to be baptized in the
          name of Jesus, for the remission of sins, and to have hands laid
          upon you for the reception of the Holy Ghost. And when you
          received that Holy Ghost, it took of the things of God and showed
          them unto you. Among other things it showed you that it was
          proper for you to gather to the land of Zion, and you came here.
          It was under this influence you came. You came to learn more
          fully the law of God, and to be instructed in the principles of
          eternal life. The Lord has said through the Prophet Jeremiah: "I
          will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will
          bring you to Zion; and I will give you pastors, according to mine
          heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding."
          This is what we are gathered here for--to build up the Zion of
          our God, to establish the Kingdom of God, and to purify and exalt
          the Church of the living God; that His people may be presented
          without spot or wrinkle, as spoken of in the Scriptures; that
          they may be prepared to have an inheritance among those that are
          sanctified; and that the principles of eternal truth may go forth
          from the land of Zion, and extend to the ends of the earth, that
          the honest in heart may be gathered together to help establish
          the principles of truth upon this land of Zion.
          Shall we accomplish this? I think we shall. But people are
          opposed to you. What difference does that make to you or to me?
          We are here, as Jesus was, to do the will of God. "I seek not
          mine own will," said the Savior, "but the will of the Father
          which hath sent me." We are here to-day to do the same thing.
          Now, do you feel angry at our enemies? No. They don't know any
          better, and if they did many of them would not like to act
          differently. If they are not capable of comprehending and
          receiving the truths of God, we cannot help it. But shall we be
          their enemies because of this? No. Shall we return evil for evil?
          No. What shall we return? Good for evil, blessing for cursing.
          "Pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;
          that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven."
          What was the blessing pronounced upon Abraham? "In thy seed shall
          all the nations of the earth be blessed;" not cursed. Did they
          carry this out? Yes. Witness the preaching of the Apostles in
          former times in the land of Asia, and the disciples on this
          continent. Who were they? Descendants of Abraham. Whom did they
          preach to? A good people, a virtuous people, a holy people? No,
          if they had been good, virtuous and holy, there would have been
          no need of a message of that kind being taken to them. But God
          felt merciful towards all the human family; for they are all His
          children, and His design was to benefit and bless them, so far as
          they would let Him, and sometimes He has had to deal with them
          very severely. On one occasion He had to cut them off by a flood,
          because they had corrupted themselves. Every imagination of their
          hearts was evil, and that continually. They were raising up a
          corrupt progeny, and it was an injustice to the spirits that
          dwelt in the heavens that wished and desired and had a right to
          have tabernacles here upon the earth. Those corrupt men and women
          were not fit to be the producers of those tabernacles, and they
          had to be cut off. But God knew how to manipulate these matters.
          He prepared a prison house for them, and when Jesus came He went
          and preached to the spirits in prison that sometime were
          disobedient in the days of Noah.
          God has always felt interested in the welfare of the human
          family; but there are certain eternal laws associated with His
          economy that have to be carried out, whether in His Church or out
          of His Church. From the members of His Church He expects a higher
          state of morality than He does from those that are outside. All
          men will be judged according to the deeds done in the body,
          whether they be good or evil. The Gospel has been sent to them
          from time to time. The old disciples were told to go to every
          nation, kindred, tongue and people, and proclaim its glad
          tidings, and the people on this continent had the same testimony
          delivered among them. In the last days there was another angel to
          fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting Gospel to
          preach to them that dwell on the earth. What Gospel? The same
          Gospel that Adam had, the same Gospel that Enoch had, the same
          Gospel that Seth and Mahalaleel and Noah had, the same Gospel
          that Abraham, Isaac and Jacob had, and that Moses and the
          Prophets had, the same Gospel that Jesus had, the same Gospel
          that was taught on the Asiatic continent and on the American
          continent, and proclaimed to the various peoples of the earth.
          As Latter-day Saints we believe this Gospel has been restored,
          and further, we know that we are in possession of it. I do for
          one, and so do you; and through obedience to its principles, and
          the reception of the Holy Ghost, you Latter-day Saints do know
          that this is the work of God, and if you don't know it, it is
          because you are not living your religion, and keeping the
          commandments of God; "for if any man will do His will," says
          Christ, "he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or
          whether I speak of myself." And the Spirit taketh of the things
          of God, and shows them unto us, and if we will follow its
          teaching, it searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.
          If we do not know these things, we ought to know them, and we
          shall know them if we only humble ourselves, and ask according to
          the light of the Spirit of the living God, even the gift of the
          Holy Ghost.
          Now, what are we doing? We are sending the Gospel to the nations
          of the earth. Why? Because God has commanded it. What are the
          Seventies for? For this purpose. What are the Twelve for? For
          this purpose. What are the Elders for? When there is a deficiency
          among the Seventies they are chosen for this purpose, and the
          High Priests have to assist in the same way. What to do? To
          teach, to instruct, to enlighten, to bless, and to lead the
          people of the world in the ways of life. This may be considered
          criminal by some, but we consider we have a duty to perform, God
          has laid that duty upon us and, in the name of Israel's God, we
          will try and do it.
          We are building temples. What for? To carry out other purposes
          that have been spoken of. Shall we carry them out? If the Lord
          permits we will. We will go on laboring and working in the
          interest of humanity. "Well," says one, "don't you feel angry
          sometimes?" Well, sometimes I feel almost as Jesus did when he
          went into the Temple and found a lot of money changers, and took
          a whip of small cords and chased them out, saying unto them, "It
          is written, My house shall be called a house of prayer; but ye
          have made it a den of thieves." We are not all of us what we
          ought to be, we ought to be more humble and more faithful, more
          diligent and more self-denying. We ought to assist in building up
          the Kingdom of God, and in doing the will of God, and seek to
          promote those principles which He has introduced for the
          salvation and exaltation of the human family. And what about this
          nation? We will do them all the good we can, and I will say,
          gentlemen, pursue your course, persecute, proscribe, so far as
          God will let you. We can stand these things if you can, but woe
          to those who fight against Zion; I say that in the name of
          Israel's God. If they can stand these things we can. We are here
          to do the will of God. Shall we persecute in return? No. We will
          do good for evil, and pray for those who despitefully use us, and
          evil entreat us that we may be the children of our Heavenly
          Father. This is the spirit of the Gospel of the son of God, and
          it is for us to carry it out. What shall we do, then? Do right;
          be honest with ourselves; be honest with our neighbors; honest
          with the good; honest with the bad; honest, I was going to say,
          with the devil; honest with everybody. We can afford to do right,
          whether others can or not. We can afford to maintain the
          Constitution and institutions of the United States, and all laws,
          as it is said in the Doctrine and Covenants, that are
          constitutional. It is the will of God that we should obey them,
          and sometimes we obey laws that we think are not constitutional.
          I expect, like the Catholics in this respect, we shall have to do
          some works of supererogation. However, let us do right. Let us
          maintain the Constitution of this government. It was ordained of
          God, and if wicked and corrupt men do wrong, and administer
          improperly and unrighteously, God will deal with them. We need
          not rail and rant and get up a commotion about them. We do not
          cherish any ill-will or ill-feelings, but they would not like it
          to be said that they are doing the works of their father, the
          devil: but that is what Jesus said about people of the same kind
          in His day. We need not be angry with them. Jesus, at the very
          last, even when hanging on the cross and expiring, said, as it
          were with His last breath, "Father, forgive them, for they know
          not what they do." Neither do they in this day. But we are the
          children of the light. Let us walk in the light, and be governed
          by the principles of truth and righteousness, virtue and honor,
          and seek to cleave to God in our bodies and in our spirits, which
          are His. If the Latter-day Saints throughout the land of Zion,
          would only fear God and work righteousness, there is not a power
          on this side of hell, or the other side either, that could harm
          them; for God will carry out His work and His purposes, and if He
          suffers us, at any time to be chastened, it will be for our good;
          but Zion will triumph, and the Kingdom of God will roll forth,
          and no man shall stop its progress from this time, henceforth and
          forever, in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 / Joseph
          F. Smith, April 6th, 1884
                          Joseph F. Smith, April 6th, 1884
                         REMARKS BY PRESIDENT JOSEPH F. SMITH
               Delivered at the General Conference, on Sunday Morning,
                                  April 6th, 1884.
                             Reported by Geo. F. Gibbs.
           F. Smith
          As the time remaining is so short, I think I could not do better
          than devote it to continuing the subject dwelt upon by Brother
           F. Smith
          The Doctrine and Covenants, as well as the Book of Mormon,
          contains indisputable evidence of the divine calling and mission
          of Joseph Smith. For instance, I will refer the congregation to
          the revelation given Dec. 25th, 1832, in relation to the great
          war of the Rebellion, with which all are more or less familiar. A
          portion of that revelation has been literally fulfilled, even to
          the very place indicated in the prediction where the war should
          commence: which, as was therein stated, was to terminate in the
          death and misery of many souls. Again, in the revelation given in
          March, 1831, to Parley P. Pratt and Lemon Copley, the following
          remarkable prediction is found:
           F. Smith
          "But before the great day of the Lord shall come, Jacob shall
          flourish in the wilderness, and the Lamanites shall blossom as
          the rose. Zion shall flourish upon the hills and rejoice upon the
          mountains, and shall be assembled together unto the place which I
          have appointed."
           F. Smith
          Who, let me ask, unless he was inspired of the Lord, speaking by
          the gift and power of God, at that remote period of the Church's
          history, when our numbers were few, when we had no influence,
          name or standing in the world--who, I would ask, under the
          circumstances in which we were placed when this prediction was
          made, could have uttered such words unless God inspired him? Zion
          is, indeed, flourishing on the hills, and is rejoicing on the
          mountains, and we who compose it are gathering and assembling
          together unto the place appointed. I now ask this congregation if
          they cannot see that this prediction, (which was made many years
          before the idea prevailed at all among this people that we should
          ever migrate and gather out to these mountain valleys), has been
          and is being literally fulfilled? If there were no other prophecy
          uttered by Joseph Smith, fulfillment of which could be pointed
          to, this alone would be sufficient to entitle him to the claim of
          being a true Prophet.
           F. Smith
          Again, in the revelation given February 23th, 1832, this
          remarkable promise and prophecy is found:
           F. Smith
          "Verily, verily I say unto you, I have decreed a decree which my
          people shall realize, inasmuch as they hearken from this very
          hour unto the counsel which I the Lord their God, shall give unto
          them. Behold, they shall, for I have decreed it, begin to prevail
          against mine enemies from this very hour, and by hearkening to
          observe all the words which the Lord their God shall speak unto
          them, they shall never cease to prevail until the kingdoms of the
          world are subdued under my feet, and the earth is given unto the
          Saints, to possess it for ever and ever."
           F. Smith
          Is there a person within the sound of my voice, or anywhere else
          upon the face of the wide earth, who can say that this promise
          has failed, that this prediction is not founded in truth, that so
          far it has not been fulfilled? I stand before this vast
          congregation, and am at the defiance of any human being to say,
          that this was not pronounced by the spirit of truth, by the
          inspiration of the Almighty, for it has been fulfilled, and is
          being fulfilled, and that, too, in the face of opposition of the
          most deadly character: and what remains will be fulfilled
          literally and completely. And it is the fear in the heart of
          Satan that this will be the case, that causes him to stir up his
          emissaries to oppose the Kingdom of God and seek, if possible, to
          destroy this great and glorious work. For it is a living fact, a
          fact that fills the hearts of the righteous and God-fearing with
          unspeakable joy and the hearts of the wicked and ungodly with
          consternation and jealous fear, that this work of God, this work
          of redemption and salvation in which we are engaged, is moving
          forward and is destined to continue in its onward march until the
          kingdoms of the world shall be subdued and brought under the law
          of Almighty God. And that this will come to pass, I can assure
          you, the enemy of all righteousness comprehends as well as we do.
          Yes, he knows that this will eventually be the case, better than
          many who profess to have received the Holy Spirit in their
          hearts; and, therefore, he is diligently seeking to stir up the
          hearts of the wicked to fight against the Saints of God, until
          they are discomfited, and Zion is free.
           F. Smith
          These predictions concerning the triumph of the cause of God over
          wickedness, and the triumph of the Saints of God over the wicked
          who contend against them, were uttered by Joseph Smith in his
          youth, in the early rise of the Church when, to all human
          appearance, their fulfillment was absolutely impossible. At that
          time there were but few who could believe, that dared to believe
          the truth of these predictions. The few, comparatively, that did
          believe when they heard, were those whose minds had been
          enlightened by the Holy Spirit of promise and who, therefore,
          were prepared to receive them. As these predictions have been
          fulfilled, so those not yet fulfilled will come to pass in the
          due time of the Lord; and as this latter-day work has so far
          grown and assumed force and power in the earth, so it will
          continue to do, and there is no power beneath the Celestial
          Kingdom that can prevent its growth, or the consummation of all
          that has been predicted concerning it.
           F. Smith
          I do not wonder that the enemies of righteousness are stirred up
          about this matter. I am not surprised that the wicked rage and
          the heathen imagine a vain thing. I am not astonished when
          certain men get mad, or that their souls are vexed within them,
          that their minds are perplexed, and that they feel wrought up
          with anger against a people who have never injured them or
          theirs. One thing I am surprised about in relation to this matter
          is, that the Latter-day Saints themselves should not be as
          strongly aroused in the interest of the Kingdom of God, as the
          enemies of truth are against it. When I contemplate the situation
          as it is presented to my mind, I am astonished that so many of
          the Latter-day Saints should be so indifferent and neglectful of
          duty that they cannot, apparently, appreciate the importance of
          living their religion. I am surprised that there should be any
          necessity for reformation among the Latter-day Saints, that is,
          if I should be surprised at all; though surprised is not the
          appropriate word to use, the word grieved, perhaps, might be used
          with greater propriety in this sense. If I would allow myself to
          indulge in a feeling of sorrow, I might indeed feel grieved that
          any of us should find ourselves in a condition to require reform
          in our lives. It certainly cannot be in consequence of the lack
          of evidences of the divinity of the work in which we are engaged,
          as there are so many such evidences transpiring every day in our
          experience; in fact the whole spectacle of this latter-day work
          is overwhelming in undeniable proof to the people of God, at
          least, that it is His work; while the whole world, on the
          contrary, are arrayed against it, because they cannot see the
          light. You who have obeyed the requirements of the everlasting
          Gospel, and have been chosen out of the world, having received
          the gift of the Holy Ghost, through the laying on of hands, it is
          your privilege to receive the witness of the Spirit for
          yourselves; it is your privilege to discern the mind and will of
          the Father respecting your own welfare, and respecting the final
          triumph of the work of God. Why, then, should we be told that
          "Mormonism" is true? Why should we need any further proof that
          Joseph Smith was a true Prophet, or that his predictions are
          being fulfilled? Why should it be necessary to prove that the
          word of God has come to the world through him, and that that word
          is indisputable, that the world cannot gainsay it? The doctrines
          and revelations believed in by the Latter-day Saints have now
          been before the world for 54 years, and during that time what the
          world has been pleased to call "Mormonism" has been to them an
          unsolved problem. The sound of the Book of Mormon has rung in the
          ears of the civilized world since the year 1830, when it was
          published, and the report of it had gone forth and was being
          agitated some time before that; and during the 54 years that that
          book has been made public to the world, there has been no stone
          unturned by the most learned men of the age to disprove it, and
          make it appear a delusion and imposition. In this, however, they
          have signally failed, not being able to produce a single argument
          that can not be successfully met by even the boys of this
          community. This may seem a broad assertion, but it is
          nevertheless true. Our Elders have been sent out as missionaries
          to the different nations now for the last 50 years, during which
          time they have testified to the truth of the Book of Mormon, and
          have invited investigation of its pages. And although many in
          their day and time have arisen either to ridicule or disprove the
          truths it contains, their efforts have been futile, resulting
          only in their own dismay. It cannot be disproved, for it is true.
          There is not a word or doctrine, of admonition, of instruction
          within its lids, but what agrees in sentiment and veracity with
          those of Christ and His Apostles, as contained in the Bible.
          Neither is there a word of counsel, of admonition or reproof
          within its lids, but what is calculated to make a bad man a good
          man, and a good man a better man, if he will hearken to it. It
          bears the mark of inspiration from beginning to end, and carries
          conviction to every honest-hearted soul. And because the Book of
          Mormon is a true and authentic record of a people who once lived
          and flourished on this American continent--and because God
          Himself has undertaken, through us, His weak and erring children,
          to establish His rule and government on the earth in answer to
          the prayers of His Saints, ancient and modern, and according to
          the counsels of His own will--because it is verily so, devils
          rage and the wilfully wicked are angered and seek the life and
          liberties of the Saints, and the destruction of the work of the
          Lord; but in the name of Israel's God, they never will be able to
          accomplish their purposes against us. As I have often said, so I
          repeat, the best time the world ever saw, or ever will see, to
          destroy "Mormonism," was on the 6th day of April, 1830. But they
          did not do it then, and so they let the opportunity slip: and
          have ever since been blindly struggling in the hope of doing
          something towards it. But the more they struggle, the wider of
          the mark their efforts will be. This is my testimony. If I had
          the power and was called upon to do it, I would go to the ends of
          the earth and would lift up my voice in testimony of this fact to
          every nation, tongue and people, for I know that it is true.
           F. Smith
          Before I close I want to say a word to our young men who are
          called as missionaries. When a man is called to go on a mission,
          and a field of labor is assigned him, he should, I think, say in
          his heart, not my will be done, but thine, O Lord. We find it a
          little difficult sometimes to get the right men to go to certain
          distant lands to preach the Gospel. It is sometimes thought,
          especially among our young Elders, that Great Britain is the
          finest field of labor in the world; and, consequently, they want
          to go there. They do not like to go to the Southern States; they
          do not much fancy the Northern States; they do not care to go to
          New Zealand, or to the Sandwich Islands. When we call men to go
          to Great Britain, it is gratifying for them to respond cheerfully
          to the call; and when we call others to go to the Northern
          States, to New Zealand, or to the Sandwich Islands, we do not
          want any to come and say, they want their field of labor changed
          to England. We expect every man to be on hand to go wherever he
          may be called, and then he may expect the blessing of the Lord to
          attend him in his labors. I have been thankful only once since I
          went to the Sandwich Islands on my first mission, and that has
          been ever since.
           F. Smith
          Soon after I was sent there was a very bright, intelligent man
          called to go to the Islands, and it was one of the causes of his
          apostasy. "What," said he, "send me, a linguist, a man well read,
          an educated man, and a Englishman at that, to preach to
          heathens?" He felt that he was not looked upon with that
          consideration and respect that his scholarly attainments
          commanded; he felt that he was slighted; and apostatized, and
          returned to his native land, where he wrote a book against us,
          and has since died. When Brother George Q. Cannon was called to
          go to the Islands, he had no such feelings. He learned the
          language, and translated the Book of Mormon into the Hawaiian
          language. He performed a glorious mission, and is now one of the
          First Presidency of the Church. And singular as it may appear,
          out of the number of Elders that have been on missions to the
          Sandwich Islands, I can count more Apostles, more Presidents of
          Stakes, Bishops, and leading men, than can be found in the same
          number that have gone to any other country. Why is this? Perhaps
          it is because they manifested their willingness to descend below
          all things, that they might rise above all things. If a man in
          this Church would be exalted, let him humble himself; and he that
          would exalt himself, God will abase.
           F. Smith
          God bless Israel, and pour out His Spirit upon the household of
          faith, and strengthen us to do the labors required of us, in the
          name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 /
          Erastus Snow, March 9th, 1884
                            Erastus Snow, March 9th, 1884
                         DISCOURSE BY APOSTLE ERASTUS SNOW,
                   Delivered in the Assembly Hall, Salt Lake City,
                         Sunday Afternoon, March 9th, 1884.
                             (Reported by John Irvine.)
          In rising before you, brethren and sisters, this afternoon, I
          desire to commit myself unto the Lord, invoking His blessing upon
          the congregation, and that the Holy Spirit may dictate that which
          may be spoken to our edification and encouragement in well-doing.
          In the providence of God His people are located in the valleys of
          the Rocky Mountains, midway between the oceans, occupying the
          position of a city set upon a hill which cannot be hid. It was
          the providences of God around about His people which brought them
          to this land, which led them out of--what shall I say? out of
          bondage?--perhaps that is not quite the phrase to use--but which
          led them out of the older States of America, where persecution
          had followed the Saints from their earliest history, across the
          great plains, guided by the prayer of faith and the inspiration
          of the Almighty, manifested through President Brigham Young and
          his brethren, who counseled and guided the people hitherward, and
          planted their feet in the valleys of the Rocky Mountains. It was
          not our seeking. As President George A. Smith once quaintly
          remarked: "We came to this country willingly, because we were
          obliged to."
          When persecuted in the State of New York, the early churches fled
          to Ohio--located a Stake of Zion--built a temple unto the Lord in
          Kirtland, from which Elders were sent out into all parts of
          America, and into Europe. Persecuted in those regions, most of
          them emigrated westward and located in Missouri, where several
          Stakes of Zion were organized, and again foundations were laid
          for a temple, and the Twelve, with others of the Priesthood, were
          commanded of the Lord to take their departure to the nations of
          Europe and other parts of the globe, to preach the Gospel.
          Persecutions arose in that land, and became more general than any
          persecutions that had preceded them, until the State became
          embroiled, and an executive order was issued by the then Governor
          Lilburn W. Boogs, who directed his principal generals and
          aides-de-camp to gather together the militia of the State, and
          expel the Saints from the State. And in this executive order this
          remarkable phrase was used; speaking of the Mormon people it
          said: "They must be exterminated or driven from the State."
          Strange that in a republic like ours, a country of law and
          government, such an executive order should appear. But it is
          beyond dispute; it has passed into history; the annals of the
          State attest it; and the result of such an order is well known in
          the history of this people. They were not exterminated, but they
          were driven from the State. Time would fail me to tell of the
          tears, the sorrow of women and children, when husbands and
          fathers and brothers were dragged to prison, or compelled to flee
          and to make their escape in various ways, through the wilderness
          of the Great West, through the then unsettled regions of northern
          Missouri and Iowa, until they found a stopping place on either
          side of the Mississippi, in Hancock County, Illinois, and in Lee
          County, Iowa; these places becoming rallying places, temporarily,
          for the Latter-day Saints, where the banner of truth was again
          unfurled, and the Saints began to establish themselves in those,
          at that time, almost entirely unsettled regions. In the short
          space of seven years they had increased to tens of thousands, and
          established several Stakes of Zion on both sides of the
          Mississippi, with the beautiful city of Nauvoo as the centre of
          their operations and the site of the new temple. It was here that
          the ire of the people both of Illinois and Missouri was aroused
          against the Saints--especially the ire of the surrounding
          counties, both in Illinois and Iowa--until it became evident that
          the Saints must again take up the line of march to some other
          unsettled region. Of the history of the persecutions that
          followed in 1845-6; the martyrdom of the Prophets Joseph and
          Hyrum, as also the slaughter of many other individuals; the
          burning of houses of granaries, of haystacks, of grain stacks,
          the property of the Saints from outside settlements near Nauvoo,
          and of the consequent combination of nine counties to make a
          descent upon Nauvoo, and the expulsion of the Saints from the
          city--all these things, I say, are matters of history. And while
          the people of the State in their organized capacity sought to
          screen themselves from the direct responsibility of those events
          under various pretenses, yet the covering was "too thin" from the
          fact that the then Governor Ford, of Illinois, was really aiding
          and abetting all those movements; he did nothing to restrain
          them, but everything to encourage them, and in this way the stain
          of these things--the death of the Prophets and the expulsion of
          the Saints--was fastened upon the government of the State.
          However much some honorable persons in the State may have opposed
          these things, yet there was not influence and power enough in the
          State to intervene for the protection of the Saints in the
          enjoyment of their civil and religious rights. Thus they were
          compelled to retire, and their march was westward into these
          All this had been predicted by the Prophet Joseph. The Saints had
          been looking forward to the accomplishment of those events. They
          were not altogether unlooked for, however much the necessity was
          deplored and however great were the sufferings of individuals and
          families, and the community as a whole, in their travels for a
          distance of nearly 1,500 miles across the then barren trackless
          The history of the pioneers and the many people that followed,
          and the privations of the early years in the settlement of the
          Saints in these Rocky Mountains, are also matters of history. I
          would that they were compiled in a succinct and lucid history,
          that our children might peruse the same and not forget the scenes
          through which their fathers have passed; for they are wonderful.
          There are many now living who passed through these events; they
          were personal sharers in them; but the great mass of the present
          generation know nothing of them, only as they are occasionally
          referred to by their fathers.
          It is therefore quite true what President George A. Smith said,
          "that we came to this country willingly because we were obliged
          to." It seemed to have been the course marked out before us, and
          circumstances so surrounded and pressed upon us, that we were not
          able to avoid it, although we fain would have avoided it, if we
          Prior to the full determination upon moving westward, President
          Brigham Young and the Twelve joined in communications to all the
          Governors of the several States east of the Rocky Mountains,
          imploring them and their Legislatures for some word of comfort,
          of consolation, of tacit permission for the Saints to find
          shelter and protection at the hands of their respective
          governments. These official communications, made to every State
          and State legislature in the land, received but very slight
          consideration. From a portion of them no answers were received at
          all, and those who did deign to answer those communications
          answered them evasively, without any hearty expressions of
          welcome, or any intimation that they would use their influence to
          maintain the rights, privileges and immunities of citizens. In
          short, the cold shoulder was turned towards the Saints from every
          quarter, and immediately in front was the combined mob of nine
          counties, waging war against them, backed up secretly by the
          powers of the State--or at least there was no effort on the part
          of the State to restrain the actions of the mob. President Young
          and other Elders and the people were harassed continually by
          vexatious law suits. They were pressed on every hand. Their
          enemies desired to involve them in trouble. They sought to
          imprison our leading men. And though, at a council, held in
          October, 1845, between the Twelve and the leaders of the
          opposition, including representatives of the State-the principal
          general of that district, the circuit judge of that
          district--Stephen A. Douglas, subsequently a Senator of the
          United States, and presidential aspirant--I say, notwithstanding
          that it was stipulated at that council, that if we would in good
          faith go to and make the necessary preparations for our departure
          westward, as soon as the grass grew in the spring, to enable our
          teams to live, we should be protected and the mobocratic spirit
          restrained until we could take our departure--our agreement and
          pledge to accept these conditions, only seemed to embolden the
          more rabid of our enemies in the counties round about, and
          instead of respecting these conditions, agreed to by the
          dignitaries of the State for our protection during winter, they
          commenced to oppress and harass and war against us to such an
          extent, that we were compelled to take up our march in the dead
          of winter. Early in February, multitudes of the people commenced
          to cross the Mississippi, and form their encampments in the
          forest of Iowa, preparatory to starting out upon their long and
          dreary march across the desert. In regard to the terrible
          sufferings that followed--the terrible snow storms and rains that
          continued from February until May, causing such floods and mire,
          distress and suffering and consequent sickness, as perhaps has
          never before been known to the lot of man under similar
          circumstances--they were at least such as none can properly
          depict or comprehend, but those who passed through them. Of the
          many that were laid by the wayside before reaching these valleys
          of the mountains, those families who were decimated must be left
          to tell the tale. The history of those early days of persecution
          and suffering will never be fully known. But in the midst of it
          all a goodly number of the people of God were sustained by their
          faith and the overruling providence of Jehovah, and were brought
          safely through; while the weaker and more doubtful, the fearful
          and unbelieving, scattered into the surrounding country, left the
          body of the Saints, drifted up and down the Mississippi into the
          various towns of Illinois, Iowa and Missouri, and back into the
          Eastern States, while others of the poor and less able, though
          earnest in the faith and abiding in the truth, were left by the
          wayside, at the way stations that were planted between the
          Mississippi and the Missouri Rivers, where farms were opened,
          grain and vegetables planted for the poor, until they reached a
          general place of rendezvous on the Missouri River, at Council
          Bluffs, where the Mormon Battalion enlisted for the Mexican War,
          and in the midst of which the emigrating camps were obliged to
          halt until the following spring, when they started for the
          western wilds of this great interior country. I said these things
          had been directed by the overruling providence of God. The
          combined force of the unbelieving and the wicked was brought to
          bear to expel the Saints, and compel their journey westward to
          the Rocky Mountains. It was permitted by Him who overrules all
          things for the good of His people; and the trials of the people
          and the afflictions of individuals and individual families were
          eventually lost, as it were, and buried in the universal good
          which Providence had provided for His people as a whole. The
          school of experience through which the early leaders and families
          of Israel had passed for a period of sixteen years had fitted
          them for those trying scenes and for the work which they were
          destined to perform in these mountains, in grappling with the
          difficulties of a new country, of a barren waste, of an untried
          region, a region supposed to be utterly uninhabitable. The great
          arid belt bordering on the Rocky Mountains, extending for some
          hundreds of miles eastward of the Rocky Mountains, and across the
          great basin of the American desert, was supposed to be absolutely
          unproductive--incapable of producing cereals, vegetables and
          fruits necessary to civilization. The school boys of my age will
          remember to have looked on their maps and seen all this country
          marked as the Great American Desert. It was supposed that a strip
          bordering on the Pacific, was composed of fine fertile land, and
          adapted to European settlements. But that country on the Pacific,
          was, at that time, in the possession of the Mexicans, with a few
          Catholic missions established along the coast, where they had
          raised a few beans and cabbages and red peppers, and where they
          had sustained themselves mostly by raising stock. This was all
          there was to show for their presence in that region. And the few
          trappers who had mingled with the Indians of this great interior
          country for twenty years were of the opinion that it was utterly
          impossible to raise grain in any part of this region. Captain
          James Bridger, the noted hunter and trapper, who had intermarried
          and established a trading post among the Shoshones, met the
          pioneers on the Big Sandy, and gave it as the opinion of himself,
          and of the early trappers who had gone through this country, that
          it would be impossible to raise grain here. He told us of the
          valley of the Great Salt Lake, and pointed out especially the
          valley, which he termed the valley of the Utah outlet--the valley
          that spread between the fresh water lake of Utah and the Great
          Salt Lake--as the most probable place in all of this great
          interior country to raise grain, at the same time supplementing
          his account of the land with the opinion that it was impossible
          to raise grain, and as a clincher to his opinion offered $1,000
          as a premium for the first ear of corn that should be raised in
          this valley. But the faith which sustained the Saints, and which
          let them, responded through President Brigham Young to Captain
          Bridger like this: "Wait a little season and we will show you."
          We have shown to the world what could be done, or, I will say,
          rather, the Lord our God--the God of the Latter-day Saints--has
          shown to us and to all the world what could be done in this
          hitherto barren region when His blessing rested upon it.
          The first important movement of the pioneer company on setting
          foot upon this ground near City Creek, was to call the camp
          together, and bow down under the sun at high noon, and dedicate
          themselves unto God, and this land for the habitation of His
          Saints, imploring His blessing upon it, that its barrenness might
          be turned into fruitfulness, and that the rewards of His people
          might be sure. And whithersoever their footsteps were turned, to
          the north or the south, to the east or the west, the prayer and
          faith of an afflicted and devoted people ascended up to heaven
          for the God of the land to sanctify it, and hallow the elements
          and make the country fruitful.
          The art of irrigation was unknown on the North American continent
          at that time--at least among European settlers in the United
          States. There was no part of the United States which at that time
          relied upon artificial irrigation in all the arid regions of
          America. The system of irrigation adopted in Utah has measurably
          been copied by California, Colorado, Arizona, Wyoming, Idaho, and
          Montana, although some of the best features of our system of
          irrigation have been neglected in these surrounding States and
          Territories; canal and irrigation companies have there been
          allowed to organize and monopolize the streams and make the
          farmers tributary to them, taxpayers for use of the fluid which
          God sends down from heaven--that is, they have not united the
          interest of the farmer, the land owner, with the canal owners as
          we have done in Utah, but they have made the water rather
          personal property than an attach of the realty, compelling the
          farmer to rent or buy water for their lands. Herein Utah sets an
          example in this arid region to the rest of the world, and the
          future history of this great interior country will award all due
          honor to the wise legislation of Utah, and the wise counsels of
          her leaders, and deprecate the folly of the surrounding States
          and Territories in not following their example in this respect.
          But the Lord has blessed the labors of the people of Utah in
          diverting the mountain streams over the arid plains, and opening
          farms, orchards and vineyards, and building Villages, towns and
          cities, organizing governments, and establishing a commonwealth.
          That the early history of the Latter-day Saints fitted its
          leaders for governing, for organizing and controlling society,
          and moulding it for the best interest of the whole, will be
          admitted by the impartial historian of future ages, when the
          religious bigotry of the hour shall have spent its fury, and the
          stupid, blind ignorance of demagogues shall have been lost and
          drowned in the common sense of the people. Yet, our eastern
          neighbors in Missouri, Illinois, Iowa, and the Atlantic States,
          sanctioned in their inmost hearts the murder of the Prophets, and
          the persecution and expulsion of the Saints, though some of them
          lifted up their voices against it, but the voices so lifted were
          "like angels' visits, few and far between," and powerless to turn
          the popular current or stem the tide that flowed, like the waters
          which the serpent cast out of his mouth after the apocalyptic
          woman that fled from the face of the serpent into the wilderness.
          The Lord had a place prepared for His Church in the wilderness,
          in the great American Desert, where she would be preserved from
          the face of the serpent for a season.
          I well remember those early years, as do many who are here before
          me to-day, though their numbers are fast becoming very visibly
          less. We remember the time when the first State government was
          organized in these mountains. It was simultaneous with the
          organization of a State government on the Pacific coast under the
          title of the State of California. Delegates were appointed by the
          provisional government of the State of Deseret, to visit
          Washington and present their application for admission into the
          Union at the same Congress at which California's representatives
          appeared and knocked for admission. Both acted in their sovereign
          capacity in organizing their State government and adopting their
          State constitution. It did not need any special act of Congress
          extending liberty to them so to do; for in both instances the
          people of California and Utah acted in virtue of their
          inalienable rights as free men entitled to the enjoyment of free
          government, and under the general institutions of our country,
          that recognize the right of the people to local self-government.
          Each State organized a State government, adopted a State
          constitution; they were equally republican in form and liberal in
          spirit, and made a simultaneous application to Congress for
          admission. The answer of the general government to California,
          was favorable; to that of Deseret unfavorable; in other words
          they recognized in the one the rights of local self-government,
          admitted their senators and representatives to Congress, and the
          State into the Union, on an equal footing with the original
          States; while to Deseret they handed back a Territorial form of
          government, adopted the Organic Act, and appointed their
          territorial officers. Thanks to the advice of our never deviating
          friend, General Thomas L. Kane, President Fillmore, who succeeded
          General Taylor in the Presidency, nominated President Brigham
          Young as the first Governor of Utah. Thankful were we even for
          this partial recognition of the rights of the people to local
          self-government, but strange to say, that in the organization of
          our Territorial government, it seemed good to the Congress of the
          United States to make the Governor of Utah an integral part of
          its local legislature, empowered to approve its laws or to
          exercise an unqualified and absolute veto in all matters of
          legislation, a feature so unrepublican and unusual, that it could
          scarcely be endured by any other people for a period of 35 years,
          except the Latter-day Saints, and in this instance we are an
          exception. Two-thirds of the Senate and two-thirds of the House
          of Representatives can pass any measure over the veto of the
          President of the United States. The same may be said of all the
          legislatures in every State in the Union; a two-thirds vote of
          the Legislature suffices to pass any measure over the veto of the
          governor, and this is the rule obtaining in the territories, as
          well as the States, with the exception of Utah and New Mexico.
          I only refer to this as an instance of the marked jealousy that
          has prevailed toward this people--the unwillingness to concede to
          them the common right of local self-government.
          Under the administration of Governor Young, his efforts were ever
          directed with the Legislative Assembly to enlarge and extend the
          area of freedom and the liberty of the voter, and the rights of
          the common people, never attempting to exercise the veto power,
          much less to enlarge and extend, the executive prerogatives; and
          under his administration, laws were enacted to provide for
          various offices necessary to administer the affairs of the
          territorial government, as well as those of counties and
          municipalities, making them all elective by the people, or by
          their chosen representatives in Legislative assembly united. It
          seems to have been reserved to one or two of our late
          Governors--notably our present one--to labor assiduously,
          tenaciously, blindly, and, as we think, foolishly, to abridge the
          popular suffrage, the rights of the mass of the people in the
          management of their own local affairs, and the election of their
          own officers, or for the handling of their own finances; I say it
          seems to be left to our late governors to earnestly struggle to
          enlarge the executive prerogative. Not content with the veto
          power reserved in the Organic Act by Congress to annul any act of
          the Legislative Assembly of Utah, nor yet with the second veto
          vested absolutely in the Governor by simply withholding his
          approval of any measure; the present Governor has sought in
          various ways to extend and enlarge this executive prerogative.
          I refer to these things only as items of history which we are
          making for ourselves, and which our Federal government and its
          representatives in Utah are making for themselves, and which the
          historian will point to as the evidence of a continual desire for
          aggression upon the liberties of the people.
          I am well aware that the excuse for all this is the unity of our
          people--the fact that they are not so greatly distracted by the
          efforts of aspiring demagogues and political satraps--and that
          their own common sense teaches them the necessity, under existing
          circumstances, to consider well and ponder the paths of their
          feet, and unite in the wisest and best measures, and in the
          choice of reliable, honorable men to fill the various offices
          within the gift of the people, rather than divide and admit into
          power aspiring demagogues. We, as a people, have adopted the
          motto, that the office should seek the man, instead of the man
          seeking the office, and have invariably administered to the
          office seekers this quiet rebuke, a ticket-of-leave to stay at
          home. The good sense of the people has led them to seek out
          honorable and non-aspiring men and call them to duty, to fill the
          offices in the interests of the people, not for plunder and pelf,
          but for the reward of a good conscience and the approbation of an
          honest, discerning and approving people. And this unity of the
          people has not been solely a matter of our own seeking, however
          desirable it is, but measurably the result of outward pressure,
          if left to ourselves, unbelied, unscoffed at; if treated with any
          degree of fairness and liberality, and freedom to enjoy the
          rights and immunities of citizenship, unmolested, unpersecuted, I
          fear that we should soon begin to learn the ways of the wicked
          around us, or of the foolish of other countries, and the
          heedless, the thoughtless, and the ignorant among us would soon
          be following political demagogues. But it seems to be one of the
          providences of God, that there should be sufficient opposition
          from without--that is, from those who are not of us--to bind us
          together and enable us to see our only true interest in seeking
          to become one. And that oneness has not been the oneness of
          blindness, a blind following of the blind, but has been the
          result of Seers and Prophets and wise men and sages and fathers
          of the people foreseeing the evil and pointing it out in that way
          and manner that all have been able to view and see it for
          themselves. They have followed with their eyes open the Seers and
          Prophets who are not walking in darkness, and the result has been
          that we have not fallen into the ditch together, but we have
          continued to prosper and go on in the path which heaven has
          marked out for us, and the enemies of this people, who have
          resorted to every measure which their cunning and ingenuity could
          devise to hamper them and lessen their liberties--it is these
          which have fallen into the ditch, that have been trapped in their
          own measures, that have been ensnared with their own snares, and
          their folly has been made manifest, and the prediction of the
          Prophet Isaiah has happened unto them: the wisdom of their wise
          men has perished, and the understanding of their prudent men has
          been hid. No more in any former examples than in their last
          effort--the Edmunds law, so called--which is the result of the
          combined efforts and labors of a nation, begotten by the hireling
          priests, a conclave that met in Ogden, the representatives of all
          the sectarians in Utah. Then a nation groaned, and "the mountain
          labored," and brought forth a mouse, the Edmunds law! Its main
          object was to be effected through a Commission, chosen expressly,
          not to administer that law according to the letter of it, but
          chosen with a secret understanding and tacit obligations to
          enforce it with the spirit of despotism in which it had been
          conceived; and by establishing rules--irresponsible rules--rules
          of their own--absolute and appealable to nobody--and enforcing
          them in their own way they have succeeded in disfranchising not
          only actual polygamists, but all those who have been in any way
          associated or connected with polygamist families--not only plural
          wives, but first wives, and men and women who long years ago have
          been freed--to use a common phrase--from polygamy; all who have
          from any cause ceased to be polygamists. All these have been
          disfranchised--excluded from political privileges--forbidden to
          be office-holders, even to be a fence viewer, or a school
          director, or a public surveyor, or a supervisor of streets. Have
          the men who made this country, who organized government therein,
          who established order, preserved peace, and tamed the savage--who
          were the mountain police for all this great interior country for
          30 years--have these tamely submitted to these arbitrary rulings
          and decisions without protest, and because there was no power to
          withstand? I will only say they have done it from the same
          inspiration and feeling that has governed them from the beginning
          in all their wanderings. They have stooped to conquer! Will they
          conquer? Yes, God will conquer, and with Him they will rise and
          prevail. Let no one attempt to seize upon this expression as one
          of treason, of disloyalty to government, of defiance of the power
          of this great country. It is not spoken in that spirit, nor with
          any such intent; but it is the outspoken declaration of that
          faith which underlies the movements of this people, and which has
          led them on to victory from the beginning. You may write it down
          as a prophecy, but not as a threat, not as a defiance, not as a
          treasonable utterance. We recognize our allegiance to the general
          government: we recognize that it is our duty to sustain
          constitutional law and the institutions of our common country,
          and if men in power overstep their legitimate bounds, and
          exercise power that is not vested in them under the constitution,
          and violate its sacred provisions in their zeal to trample upon
          the liberties of the Saints, or hedge up their ways, it is our
          duty to bear and forbear, until the Lord says--"Tis enough," and
          until He shall open the way, in His own wonderful manner, to
          bring about a change and our release.
          I well recollect the speeches that were uttered in some of the
          great cities of the west and of the eastern States, when the
          whole people were aroused and urged to bring their influence to
          bear upon Congress to pass the Edmunds law. I well remember that
          numbers of their most noted orators uttered the declaration that
          polygamy was the least part of the evil they warred against in
          Utah. I have always been aware of this. Only a few, comparatively
          speaking, of their leading orators had the temerity--or perhaps
          the lack of policy--to give utterance, in a public manner, to
          this view of the case. But those who gave such utterance said
          that the unity exhibited by the people of Utah--the united, solid
          vote of the Latter-day Saints--was far more to be dreaded than
          their polygamy. This was recognized and made clearly manifest by
          the action of the present Executive of Utah, when he first
          introduced as a prerequisite to commissioning Notaries Public, an
          oath of his own providing, unlawful in every way, under pain of
          refusing their commissions, viz., that they were not polygamists
          or bigamists, and had not cohabited with more than one woman in
          the marriage relation! And when the Utah Commissioners arrived in
          Utah and entered upon their labors, in one of the schemes devised
          for carrying into effect the Edmunds law, they adopted the same
          measure that had been introduced by His Excellency, Governor
          Murray, and incorporated the same provision in their test
          oath--thrust in the mouths or in the face of every individual
          voter, male and female, this test oath, leaving every libertine
          in the land, and every lewd woman, every secret whoremonger and
          adulterer at liberty to register, vote, and hold office, provided
          their liaisons have not been in the marriage relation! But the
          honorable men and the honorable women who had entered into sacred
          vows with each other, and had sacredly observed these vows, and
          were rearing their families to honor and respect their parents
          and to be good citizens in society, teaching them to fear God,
          and honor the Patriarchs of old, and flee fornication, and look
          upon whoredom and adultery as the greatest of all crimes, next to
          the shedding of innocent blood--all these fathers and mothers
          must be disfranchised! and an attempt made to dishonor them in
          the eyes of their sons and daughters! They appealed to their sons
          and daughters to rise up in their majesty and throw their fathers
          and their mothers overboard, and elect them to power. And when
          the people nominated Hon. John T. Caine as their Delegate to
          Congress, to supply the vacancy made by the illiberal and
          unrepublican action of the so-called Republican party in the
          expulsion of their Delegate, Hon. George Q. Cannon, from
          Congress; the opposing candidate, Judge P. T. Van Zile, went
          through this Territory, delivering his political speech, calling
          to his aid his retainers, in every place where he could get an
          audience, telling the masses of the people: My election means the
          continuation of your liberties; the election of my opponent means
          your disfranchisement as a whole people, the abolishment of your
          Legislative Assembly the reducing of you to a colony governed,
          absolutely, as a conquered race. Suiting the action to the word,
          those who sustained him have labored to bring about his
          prophecies, and they are still laboring to bring them about. We
          know full well, that the devil, as well as the Lord, can utter
          some truths, and sometimes is allowed to fulfill his predictions.
          Wicked men do this as well as righteous men. But there is one
          decree that has gone out from days of old, that whatever may be
          the result of a few skirmishes here and there, and now and then,
          through the generations of men, the great and last battle shall
          result in the utter overthrow of his Satanic Majesty; he will be
          bound in everlasting chains and thrust into the bottomless pit,
          his followers being cast down with him. It is this assurance
          underlying the faith of the Saints, that enables them to go
          forward, onward and upward, relying upon the arm of Jehovah, and
          the ultimate triumph of truth and righteousness in the earth.
          That those men who have laid these schemes to abridge our
          liberties and immunities as citizens; and forged fetters for our
          hands and feet, have not done so in the interests of morality, is
          made painfully apparent in the test oath framed by Governor
          Murray, adopted by the Commissioners, and sustained--so far as
          any outward manifestation is concerned--by Congress and the
          people of the nation, in that they continue to uphold this
          Federal Governor and these Commissioners, and to sustain them in
          their rulings and in the results thereof. Had they been honestly
          working in the interest of morality, would they merely have made
          the effort to exclude those that were in plural marriage, and
          embrace in their arms the libertine, the adulterer, the
          whoremonger, the fornicator, and every lewd person of every class
          in the land outside of the marriage relation? This shows it was
          the patriarchal order of marriage that they warred against, and
          not against illicit intercourse and the defilement of the sexes
          and degeneracy of the race. All these things are held up before
          high heaven, for angels to look upon, for future historians to
          descant upon, and for the children that may, peradventure, be
          spared of these ignoble sires to gaze upon with unutterable
          disgust. The one-man power exercised by a stranger appointed to
          Federal office, and sent among the people as a Governor; the
          one-man power that puts forth his ipse dixit to nullify the acts
          of a great people through their representatives in the
          Legislative Assembly, and to dictate to the people, or their
          representatives, what they may do with their taxes, or what they
          must not do with them--all these things, I say, will be referred
          to by the future historian as very, very black marks upon their
          history; and also their blind zeal and efforts--to what? To
          prevent the growth, enlargement and extension of the Latter-day
          Saints in the land. This is the real object underlying all their
          efforts. The Latter-day Saints do not imitate the examples of the
          Eastern cities and the old commonwealths of the Atlantic seaboard
          in destroying their offspring. They do not patronize the vendor
          of noxious, poisonous, destructive medicines to procure abortion,
          infanticide; child murder, and other wicked devices, whereby to
          check the multiplication of their species, in order to facilitate
          the gratification of fleshly lust. We are not disposed to imitate
          these examples, nor to drink in the pernicious doctrine once
          uttered in Plymouth Church by the noted Henry Ward Beecher--that
          it was a positive evil to increase families in the land beyond a
          limited extent, and the ability of the parents to properly
          educate and maintain them, sustaining the idea of small families;
          in effect, justifying the mothers--the unnatural mothers--of New
          England, and their partners who sanction their efforts in
          destroying their own offspring, and in preventing the fecundity
          of the race. Fancy such a doctrine justified by the noted orator
          of the nineteenth century, and re-echoed by the smaller fry
          throughout the country! The Latter-day Saints are taught to
          reverence the words of the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob,
          concerning the multiplication of their species, and are called as
          His children to multiply and replenish the earth. If the traveler
          who visits Utah, will deign to visit our congregations, our
          schools and our Improvement Associations, he can view hosts of
          children growing up on every hand, all of whom are taught to read
          and write, and in the common branches of an English education
          beyond that which is found to exist in any other part of the land
          under similar circumstances. But notwithstanding all this, they
          say secretly among themselves, and in the national and state
          councils: "This will never do. A people multiplying and
          increasing like this will over-run the land." They say, as did
          Pharaoh of old, "We must do something to stop this increase."
          Pharaoh devised means of secretly checking it, by charging his
          midwives, and making a decree, that every male child born in
          Israel should be put to death. We read that when Moses was born
          and his mother found him a goodly child she disregarded the
          decree of the king, and God over-ruled in her favor, in pursuance
          of her faith, and protected her movements, and Moses was spared
          and brought into the king's house, and unwittingly educated under
          his tuition to become the future deliverer of Israel, and the
          lawgiver of nations. History but repeats itself. The efforts of
          the wicked to stop the growth and enlargement of the Latter-day
          Saints will as signally fail, and the failure will be on as
          natural principles as it was anciently in the days of Moses. For
          the Lord has decreed it. He has decreed that Zion shall prosper,
          and that in the latter days righteousness and truth shall
          prevail. Blessed are all they that will listen to truth and walk
          righteously, and woe! be unto those who fight against Zion. For
          the time cometh, saith the Lord of Hosts, when all they that
          fight against Zion shall be as a dream of a night vision. "It
          shall even be as when an hungry man dreameth, and, behold, he
          eateth; but he awaketh, and his soul is empty; or, as when a
          thirsty man dreameth, and, behold, he drinketh; but he awaketh,
          and, behold, he is faint, and his soul hath appetite: so shall
          the multitude of all the nations be, that fight against Zion."
          This work is not of man but of God, who has set His hand the
          second time to bring again Zion. And He has said: "Gather my
          Saints unto me; those that have made a covenant with me by
          sacrifice." His arm is stretched out to accomplish the purposes
          which He has predicted by His Prophets from the beginning of the
          world until the present time, and it will not be turned back
          until it has accomplished all things.
          May the grace of God be and abide with us individually and
          collectively: may it assists us to remember these things; may we
          not forget the high calling whereunto we are called; may we abide
          in the truth; may we stand steadfast to our work; may we go
          forward in our labors, yielding not unto the tempter; for if we
          are faithful our triumph is sure and our reward cometh not from
          beneath, but from above, through our Lord and Savior Jesus
          Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 / Moses
          Thatcher, April 4th, 1884
                           Moses Thatcher, April 4th, 1884
                          REMARKS BY APOSTLE MOSES THATCHER,
               Delivered at the General Conference, Friday Afternoon,
                                  April 4th, 1884.
                             Reported by Geo. F. Gibbs.
                              RIGHTS--LOYAL INTENTIONS.
          I rejoice in the remarks that were made this morning by the
          brethren, and feel that they were prompted by the Holy Ghost. It
          was truly remarked by our aged and venerated President, that
          unless sustained by the Lord, we cannot, as a people, accomplish
          His work; and it certainly must be apparent to every thoughtful
          mind, that man in and of himself is very weak, that he is unable,
          alone and unaided, to accomplish that which will result in his
          own salvation. It is not difficult to understand or to comprehend
          the power of God, as it is manifested in the affairs of nations;
          but we cannot always see how He manages and controls individuals.
          And yet no human being without His permission breathes the breath
          of life, for He is the giver of life; and when we, as a community
          or as individuals, sense this, manifesting by our works a goodly
          degree of faith and humility before God, then we are in the
          light. But people, on the other hand, who undertake to exhibit
          their own wisdom, or to depend upon the knowledge of man will, if
          they continue in that spirit, be led into darkness, and their
          life will result in failure.
          During the past few months, I have thought much upon a particular
          subject, which has weighed heavily upon my mind by reason of the
          enmity, the malice and hatred which I have seen manifested
          towards the Latter-day Saints. And I have been led to believe
          that they are hated more for their virtues than for their
          supposed vices. In connection with this subject, I have been led
          to believe that many among this people are apt to have compassion
          for the guilty. And I must confess myself that I have never heard
          judgment passed on any man by the authorities of the Church
          without more or less pity in my heart for that man. We are
          generally apt to be too lenient to the falsifier, who becomes the
          accuser of his brethren. We are too apt to look with pity upon
          one who may have fallen from the path of chastity, and forsaken
          the ways of the Lord. There is something in the human heart that
          is drawn out in sympathy and compassion for the erring. I will
          not attempt this afternoon to show whether this is a correct or
          an incorrect sentiment; whether it is a failing or a virtue; but
          I have noticed on the other hand, when hatred prompts action,
          there is but little if any mercy shown. The shafts intended for
          the innocent are often dipped in doubly distilled poison, before
          they are sped from the bow of envy by the hand of malice. It was
          so in the days of the Savior. Thrice tried and thrice condemned,
          followed to the cross with but little human sympathy, he endured
          the agonies of a cruel, lingering death. How much sympathy do you
          suppose Cain had when he slew his brother Abel? Did Cain hate
          Abel because he was innocent, or because he was guilty? His hand
          would have paused; he would have reflected had Abel been as
          guilty before God as he was. But because he was pure, and because
          God recognized his purity by accepting his offering, there arose
          in Cain's heart envy, malice and hatred, that could only be
          appeased with blood. It has been so in every age of the world.
          You may trace human persecution; you may trace the history of
          those who invented the rack, the thumbscrew and the wheel, and
          you will find they have always been moved by one spirit, that
          same spirit which raised the rebellion in heaven, and that sought
          the glory and power of God the Father, and that found its
          culmination in sending to perdition Lucifer and those that were
          cast out with him. And Milton, interpreting the spirit that
          prompted Lucifer in the course he pursues, makes him say, It is
          better to reign in hell than serve in heaven." And wherever we
          find that spirit, we find a spirit of envy, a spirit of malice, a
          spirit that desires to destroy that which is more excellent and
          worthy than itself. In this way, after a just comparison between
          our persecutors and ourselves, we can account for the persecution
          to which we have been made subject.
          Let the youth of Zion contemplate the character of the Prophet
          Joseph Smith, and see how evidences of prejudice, hatred and
          malice were heaped upon him until those that were prompted by it,
          succeeded at last in slaying him. They perpetrated this deed
          without mercy, without pity, innocent and guiltless as he was. 
          How is it to-day? Converse with certain people in Salt Lake City,
          those who have made it their business to hate, to lie about, and
          to do all in their power to persecute and despoil the Latter-day
          Saints, and you will find lurking in their breasts exactly the
          same spirit manifested by the wicked towards the Saints of God in
          all ages of the world; divest them of their malice and hatred and
          there would be little left.
          We hear a great deal about the immorality of this people; but
          allow me to say, if we permitted ourselves to be led into
          wickedness; if we would adopt the ways of the Christian age; if
          we would cast our children into reservoirs and ash pits, on
          vacant lots and dung heaps, or throw them on to the railroad
          track; if we would transmit to our sons and daughters disease,
          and encourage them in ways that lead to death, hell and the
          grave; we should then have assimilated, as some of our would-be
          Christianizers have expressed it, with "American institutions;"
          in other words, then we should be hail fellows well met with the
          office-seekers, with adventurers, with libertines and other
          destroyers of other people's peace and happiness. It is because
          we cannot do this; because we refuse to "assimilate;" because we
          prefer to row against the current of corruption; because the
          fruits of our labors, political, financial and social are good,
          and bespeak a higher and better civilization, that we are hated
          and ostracized, and not because of any immorality that may exist
          in our midst. We are sensible of the fact that we are not of the
          world; that if we were, the world would love us as its own. We
          are sensible of the fact that we have come out from the world,
          and that, too, for a wise purpose in the wisdom of God. In these
          mountains we expect to establish the foundation of a civilization
          that will yet be the admiration of the world. We expect to
          bequeath to our children the blessings of physical and mental
          strength such as will enable them to stand the test that will be
          required of them; and the very principle and tenet of our
          religion, against which the Christian feeling of the age appears
          to be so much shocked, will be the chief corner-stone in the
          hands of the builder of rearing the structure that will be
          different from anything else in the world. Because we practice
          celestial or plural marriage, we are branded as law-breakers; we
          are told that we seek to violate constitutional law, and the
          enactments of the Congress of the United States. Upon this point
          I desire to make a few remarks.
          I was born in this country. I can trace my lineage to the
          revolutionary fathers. I love the institutions of my country; I
          love and venerate the Constitution. But I am not so ignorant, I
          am not so blind that I cannot see that anything which you or I
          may do may be made contrary to law, and may be called
          unconstitutional; but I hold that the Constitution was made broad
          enough, high enough and deep enough to enable us to practice our
          religion and be free before God and man. I hold that if Congress
          has a right to enact a law in relation to marriage, it might just
          as consistently make a law affecting baptism, or prescribing the
          manner, if at all, the sacrament of the Lord's supper should be
          administered. "What will you do about it?" says one. I do not
          pretend to know what others will do, neither do I pretend to give
          advice in the premises; but I do say this: that no nation or
          government has ever been able to crush the religious sentiment of
          any people unless it crushed the whole people. The nearest
          approach to success in this direction that I can find in history,
          was that of Charles IX., advised by his wicked mother, when he
          slew the Huguenots in the streets of Paris. But even this kind of
          treatment did not succeed, and never can succeed. For a
          persecuted religion will be an investigated religion; and in my
          opinion it is truth that receives the thrust of the enemy far
          more frequently than evil.
          I wish to bear my testimony in relation to the Latter-day Saints
          and their position. We will abide in these mountains, and we will
          plead with our government; we will continue to petition Congress
          and submit our memorials to the President of the United States;
          and we will continue to love our country, defend its interests,
          and be free men in these mountains. If we were aught else, if we
          could be bound hand and foot as abject slaves, we should be
          unworthy to be citizens of so great a Republic as is ours. It
          cannot be done, and for this reason: We have come from the
          nations of the civilized world of our own free will and choice,
          expecting to enjoy and to bequeath to our children the freedom
          guaranteed by the laws and institutions of our country; we came
          as intelligent, independent men and women, and a people who are
          intelligent and independent cannot be made slaves. The result
          will doubtless be this: We shall be crowded upon from time to
          time--but no more, I apprehend, than God in His wisdom will
          permit--and the very acts of persecution and unfairness that will
          be directed against us, will bring out and develop the elements
          of excellency that will make our young men statesmen, and that
          will make them lovers and defenders of right and liberty, until,
          in the due time of the Lord, there will grow up in these
          mountains a race of people that will not only defend the
          Constitution, but defend the flag of the nation, and at the same
          time be willing to extend the principles of freedom to all who
          desire to receive them. It is a great mistake to imagine that the
          "Mormons" are opposed to the government. They are not opposed to
          the government; there is not a feeling of secession about them,
          and they do not propose to be forced on the other side of the
          fence by any alliance formed either in Utah or outside of Utah.
          We expect to stand upon the platform laid broad and deep by the
          fathers. We expect to defend our rights as American citizens, and
          to do less than this would be unworthy a free people.
          Before closing I wish to bear my testimony in regard to the
          people in the world. I am perfectly satisfied there are thousands
          of good and honest men and women in our nation who, if they knew
          our true status, and understood the facts as they are, would
          defend our rights to the uttermost of their power. But they have
          been hedged about; and reports misrepresenting and belying out
          true character have been so widely circulated, that they have
          been led to believe them; but as we are becoming better known we
          may expect to find men and women with a high degree of moral
          courage, here and there, defending us, and speaking favorably of
          us. There is no such feeling exhibited in our nations towards us
          to-day as two years ago; and even that, hostile as it was, did
          good. The evil that the ministers and priests and politicians
          together, sought to bring upon us was, through the wisdom of God,
          overruled for our good. And so it will continue to be, whatever
          the enemies of truth do for the purpose of crushing it, will
          eventually be found to be the very means used to establish it. We
          have confidence in the wisdom and power of God, and are
          abundantly able to wait and labor, to work on in the path marked
          out for us to walk in, fully believing that in His own due time
          He will accomplish His "marvelous work and a wonder," and bring
          about those happy results foreshadowed in the promises made to
          His people, both ancient and modern. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 /
          Brigham Young, April 5th, 1884
                           Brigham Young, April 5th, 1884
                          REMARKS BY APOSTLE BRIGHAM YOUNG,
              Delivered at the General Conference, on Saturday Morning,
                                  April 5th, 1884.
                               Reported by John Irvine
                            PRINCIPLE--IMPROVEMENT AMONG
          It has been said, that words fitly spoken are like apples of gold
          in pictures of silver. This is especially true when they are
          accompanied by the Spirit of the Lord, carrying with them life
          and salvation to the people. There are many subjects that might
          be dwelt upon which are familiar to the Latter-day Saints, and
          which would doubtless yet be appropriate to speak upon in our
          general assemblies. I look back upon the past few years and
          recall principles that have been taught to the people, but which
          the Spirit no longer seems to inspire the Elders to dwell upon.
          And the question arises in the mind: Have such principles become
          obsolete?--Are they done away? I look forward to the time when we
          shall be able to speak upon the principles of uniting this people
          together in their temporal as well as their spiritual interests
          far more effectually than we have ever done heretofore. United we
          stand; our interests are identified; the welfare of the one
          affects the other; and our influence socially, financially and
          politically is powerful for good, and is a lever for our own
          prosperity as well as our own protection. Disunited we
          acknowledge our own weakness; infirmity is stamped in our every
          act, and in time we pass away like the dream of the night vision.
          I do not desire at this time to treat upon the subject of the
          United Order, but I would like to ask if the Latter-day Saints
          think for a moment that that principle is done away, or that it
          may be considered a failure never again to be brought to our
          notice? If such has been the conclusion of any part of this
          assembly, I have no hesitancy in stating for their information
          that such is not the case; it cannot be so if we are ever to
          answer the design of the Almighty respecting the future of His
          Kingdom upon the earth. I would say further, the time is
          approaching, if I am a judge of the Spirit as witnessed among the
          people throughout our settlements from the extreme north to the
          extreme south, when the principle will again be sounded in our
          ears; and the Spirit of God as I read it in its workings among
          the people, and as I feel its operations in my own breast,
          testifies to me that when it comes again the people will be
          prepared to receive it, and act upon it, as they have never done
          before. It is, perhaps, necessary in our present state, that we
          should have a certain amount of experience; the experience we
          have had will doubtless be of value to us, in the future, when
          the people will again be called upon to practice this principle;
          and when this time comes, in my opinion, we will commence at the
          root of the matter, accepting in the spirit and meaning thereof,
          that principle which has been disregarded and shunned by us for
          many years, the principle that lies at the foundation of the
          greatness and power to which we are destined to attain. I am
          happy to say that the people are being led to examine their own
          hearts, and to ask themselves what they are doing individually
          towards building up the Zion of God, and towards influencing
          others to do likewise. The spirit that is working among the
          people is having the effect of reform, as I have never before
          witnessed it. The reformation of 1856, ran through the people
          like wild fire; they received it under the impulse of the moment
          when the spirit of enthusiasm ran high; but now there appears to
          be but little effort to move the people in this direction, at the
          same time a determined feeling exists among the Saints to right
          themselves, and that too by commencing at the bottom round of the
          ladder, and then gradually ascending. The hearts of the people
          are being turned to the Lord. The men who have of late been
          addicted to drinking, using tobacco, swearing, and other loose
          habits, are, of their own free will, discarding their bad habits,
          and thus righting themselves, and setting a better example to
          their children and associates. This silent but potent influence
          that is fruitful of such good results is significant to the man
          or woman that is alive in this work, and that is watching with
          interest its onward progress; and it comes home to our hearts
          with convincing proof that the Lord is working among the people
          by His Spirit, and it bids us all in its silent and suggestive
          way, to prepare ourselves for events that must come, and that are
          even nigh at our doors.
          In witnessing the operations of the Spirit in the midst of the
          people in such a remarkable manner I was strongly impressed with
          the idea that we, as a people, ought to be turning our attention
          in directions looking to our becoming self-sustaining. We are
          paid out very much more than we produce. Where does the money
          come from? How is it that the families of our working men are
          able to purchase for their use imported articles? How long can
          this people prosper by pursuing such a course? The danger of this
          course has long been pointed out by our leading men; and sooner
          or later, unless all turn a short corner, the condition that we
          shall place ourselves in, will be of such a convincing character,
          that all will readily concede the correctness of the position
          taken by our leaders in urging the peoples to become producers
          and patrons of home productions. This doctrine was taught by
          President Young, during much of his life time, but especially
          during his later years; and it does appear to me that we are
          hastening on to the point that President Young said we should
          reach, unless we became self-sustaining, namely, financial
          embarrassment. In fact his doctrine on this subject was, that we
          could not stand financially, unless we became self-sustaining. It
          is doctrine that comes home to the heart of every Latter-day
          Saint; it is doctrine that all must accept and reduce to
          practice, if we would attain to power and influence in the land.
          We must become financially strong. Wealth in and of itself, is a
          lever of power; and wealth in the hands of a righteous people
          must necessarily command an influence for good. We must first
          learn to make a wise use of the means that we possess, however
          little that may be; and by continuing to do this, we prepare
          ourselves to make a right and proper use of the power that wealth
          brings. But in order to attain the position that we are bound to
          occupy in the land, we must learn to combine our interests in
          such a manner that it will be to the advantage of the whole
          community to consume and wear that which is produce and
          manufactured at home. It will be by co-operative action that we
          shall be tied together in temporal matters as we are now bound
          together in spiritual things. As a thoroughly united people we
          can the better hasten the work of God in the earth; such as
          building temples, establishing settlements, civilizing the
          Lamanites, carrying the Gospel to the Jews, and building up the
          Zion of God in these mountains. We shall be the better able to
          extend a helping hand to the needy poor, to the oppressed and
          down-trodden among the nations, as well as to protect ourselves
          from the inroads of wicked and designing men. The few minutes
          allotted to me have expired.
          That God may inspire our hearts to do His will, and that all may
          be willing in the day of His power, is my prayer, in the name of
          Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 / George
          Q. Cannon, April 6, 1884
                           George Q. Cannon, April 6, 1884
            Delivered in the Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, (to the General
                      assembly) Sunday Morning, April 6, 1884.
                             (Reported by John Irvine.)
          I will read a portion of the 29th chapter of the second book of
          Nephi, from the last edition of the Book of Mormon.
               1. "But behold, there shall be many at that day, when I
          shall proceed to do a marvelous work among them, that I may
          remember my covenants which I have made unto the children of men,
          that I may set my hand again the second time to recover my
          people, which are of the house of Israel.
               2.   "And also, that I may remember the promises which I
          have made unto thee, Nephi, and also unto thy father, that I
          would remember your seed; and that the words of your seed should
          proceed forth out of my mouth unto your seed. And my words shall
          hiss forth unto the ends of the earth, for a standard unto my
          people, which are of the house of Israel.
               3. "And because my words shall hiss forth, many of the
          Gentiles shall say, A Bible! A Bible! we have got a Bible, and
          there can not be any more Bible.
               4.  "But thus saith the Lord God; O fools, they shall have
          a Bible; and it shall proceed forth from the Jews, mine ancient
          covenant people. And what thank they the Jews for the Bible which
          they receive from them? Yea, what do the Gentiles mean? Do they
          remember the travels, and the labors, and the pains of the Jews,
          and their diligence unto me, in bringing forth salvation unto the
               5.   "O ye Gentiles, have ye remembered the Jews, mine
          ancient covenant people? Nay, but ye have cursed them, and have
          hated them, and have not sought to recover them. But behold, I
          will return all these things upon your own heads; for I the Lord
          hath not forgotten my people.
               6.  "Thou fool, that shall say, A Bible, we have got a
          Bible, and we need no more Bible. Have ye obtained a Bible, save
          it were by the Jews?
               7.   "Know ye not that there are more nations than one? Know
          ye not that I, the Lord your God, have created all men, and that
          I remember those who are upon the isles of the sea; and that I
          rule in the heavens above, and in the earth beneath; and I bring
          forth my word unto the children of men, yea, even upon all the
          nations of the earth?
               8.   "Wherefore murmur ye, because that ye shall receive
          more of my word? Know ye not that the testimony of two nations is
          a witness unto you that I am God, that I remember one nation like
          unto another? Wherefore, I speak the same words unto one nation
          like unto another. And when the two nations shall run together,
          the testimony of the two nations shall run together also.
               9.   "And I do this that I may prove unto many, that I am
          the same yesterday, to-day, and forever; and that I speak forth
          my words according to mine own pleasure. And because that I have
          spoken one word, ye need not suppose that I cannot speak another;
          for my work is not yet finished; neither shall it be, until the
          end of man; neither from that time henceforth and for ever.
               10.  "Wherefore, because that ye have a Bible, ye need not
          suppose that it contains all my words; neither need ye suppose
          that I have not caused more to be written:
               11.  "For I command all men, both in the east and in the
          west, and in the north, and in the south, and in the islands of
          the sea, that they shall write the words which I speak unto them:
          for out of the books which shall be written, I will judge the
          world, every man according to their works, according to that
          which is written."
          There is much more of the next chapter and of the preceding
          chapter that pertains to our time, to the day and age in which we
          live, and these chapters, with many more, are full of predictions
          by the Prophet Nephi, concerning the days when the Book of Mormon
          should come forth.
          I want this morning, if I can have the Spirit of God to lead and
          to assist me, to speak somewhat upon the predictions contained in
          the Book of Mormon--the predictions which had to be fulfilled
          after the publication of the book. It is alleged, as you know,
          that the Book of Mormon is not an inspired record, but that
          Joseph Smith, if he was the author of it, copied a great deal of
          it from the Old and New Testament. Now, there is scarcely any
          need to say to those who have studied the Book of Mormon, who
          have read it prayerfully and carefully--there is scarcely any
          need to say to them that it contains the internal evidence of its
          own divinity, that God wrote it through inspired men, and that no
          one but an inspired man or men could have written the book. There
          is no book in the English language that compares with it, unless
          it be books which contain the pure word of God. It has the
          advantage of the Bible in this: that it was translated by the
          power of God, not by the learning of man, and not selected from
          hundreds and thousands of versions as the Bible has been; for
          there is no end to the versions which exist, of the books
          contained in the Bible. Of course we have our version translated
          by learned men; but there is scarcely a passage of any importance
          in the Bible concerning which there is not some dispute among
          learned commentators. But with the Book of Mormon it is
          different. God preserved those records for a purpose in Himself.
          They were hidden up. This book, called the Book of Mormon, is an
          abridgment prepared by one of the last prophets of the Nephites,
          under the command of God, that it might come forth in the last
          days. God revealed in part to him, and to his son Moroni, the
          purpose which He had in view, in making this abridgment, and in
          concealing it in the earth, and they performed the labor
          connected with this under the direct command and inspiration of
          the Almighty, to come forth in the latter times, and to
          accomplish a great work. I wish to allude to some of the
          predictions--not those that are contained in other books, but
          those that are original with the Book of Mormon itself, and that
          could not have been made, unless the man who wrote them was
          inspired of God.
          The words which I have read were written by Nephi, one of the
          first prophets of the Nephite nation, and he describes, at great
          length, and with wonderful plainness and minuteness, the
          condition of the inhabitants of the earth at the time that this
          work should go forth. Much of this, the caviller may say, could
          have been written by a man of these days. But there are some
          things which Nephi wrote, that could not have been written by a
          modern man who did not have the spirit of prophecy, and that
          which I have read in your hearing is a part that could not have
          been written by any human being, unless he had been inspired of
          God, and was a prophet of God. If Joseph Smith--if the divinity
          of his mission--his claims to be a Prophet rested upon this
          chapter alone, or this portion of the chapter that I have read in
          your hearing, according to my view his claims would be fully and
          indisputably established, for the reason that at the time that he
          translated this chapter he had no conception, neither could any
          human being have any conception, unless inspired of God, as to
          the effect the publication of the Book of Mormon would have upon
          the Gentile world. But Joseph, inspired of God, translated the
          prediction of Nephi, which prediction states that when the Book
          of Mormon should be published, it should be received by the
          Gentiles with this expression: "A Bible! A Bible! we have got a
          Bible, and there cannot be any more Bible." How many times has
          this expression been made by clergymen, by professors of
          religion, and by Christendom generally, since the publication of
          the Book of Mormon? Ye Elders who have traversed sea and land,
          who have gone from continent to continent, who have visited the
          isles of the ocean, who have lifted up your voices in the cities
          of the Gentiles, and in their congregations; ye Elders, who have
          thus labored, know full well, that in every land, and among every
          people where you have labored, when you have spoken about God
          having restored another record, the Book of Mormon--you know that
          you have been met with these expressions, the literal words that
          Nephi said, would be used in the last days by the Gentiles, in
          regard to this work. You Latter-day Saints, who have endeavored
          to teach your friends the doctrines that God had revealed, and
          endeavored to show them that God had restored this ancient
          record--you know how your testimonies have been received
          concerning the Book of Mormon. These remarkable expressions have
          come from thousands of lips in many, many lands, and in many,
          many languages, confirmatory of the Book itself, and of its
          divine origin, and of its inspired translation. You read all the
          words of Nephi in this 29th chapter, and you will find that he
          describes with wonderful, and, I might say, photographic accuracy
          and minuteness, the condition of the so-called Christian
          world--the spirit that they possess, the crimes of which they are
          guilty, the condition in which they are placed, and all the
          circumstances connected with them.
          In his next chapter, he makes further remarks concerning this
          work, and the effect it should have. He says:
               3.   "And now, I would prophesy somewhat more concerning the
          Jews and the Gentiles. For after the book of which I have spoken
          shall come forth, and be written unto the Gentiles, and sealed up
          again unto the Lord, there shall be many which shall believe the
          words which are written; and they shall carry them forth unto the
          remnant of our seed.
               4.   "And then shall the remnant of our seed know concerning
          us, how that we came out from Jerusalem, and that they are
          descendants of the Jews.
               5.   "And the Gospel of Jesus Christ shall be declared among
          them; wherefore they shall be restored unto the knowledge of
          their fathers, and also to the knowledge of Jesus Christ, which
          was had among their fathers.
               6.   "And then shall they rejoice; for they shall know that
          it is a blessing unto them from the hand of God; and their scales
          of darkness shall begin to fall from their eyes; and many
          generations shall not pass away among them, save they shall be a
          white and delightsome people."
          Now, that is one prediction. These are the words of Nephi. I will
          now read the words of Jesus, recorded in the 16th chapter of the
          third Book of Nephi, where He, in speaking about the last days,
          and the coming forth of this work, says:
          "And thus commandeth the Father that I should say unto you at
          that day when the Gentiles shall sin against my Gospel, and shall
          be lifted up in the pride of their hearts above all nations, and
          above all the people of the whole earth, and shall be filled with
          all manner of lyings, and of deceits, and of mischiefs, and all
          manner of hypocrisy, and murders and priestcrafts, and whoredoms
          and of secret abominations; and if they shall do all those
          things, and shall reject the fullness of my Gospel, behold, saith
          the Father, I will bring the fullness of my Gospel from among
          "And then I will remember my covenant which I have made unto my
          people, O house of Israel, and I will bring my Gospel unto them:
          "And I will show unto thee, O house of Israel, that the Gentiles
          shall not have power over you, but I will remember my covenant
          unto you, O house of Israel, and ye shall come unto the knowledge
          of the fullness of my Gospel."
          These predictions are parallel; they point to the same period;
          they describe the same events, the same condition of affairs--one
          uttered 600 years or thereabouts, before the other, and yet they
          are precisely similar in their tenor, describing that which
          should be done with the Gospel among the Gentiles. I wish you all
          to remember--you Latter-day Saints, you young men and you young
          women, you little children who are capable of understanding my
          words--I wish you all to remember that at the time this was
          written, or rather at the time this was translated into the
          English language--say somewhere about the year 1828--Joseph Smith
          himself, had not received, or at least obeyed, the Gospel. He had
          derived some knowledge of it through the ministration of angels,
          and from that portion of the record that he had translated; but
          there was not a Latter-day Saint upon the face of the whole earth
          that we know anything about, or that he knew anything about. No
          man or woman had received the Gospel; no church had been
          organized; no Priesthood from the eternal worlds had been
          bestowed; not a man among all the children of men had been
          clothed with the power of the eternal Priesthood of the Son of
          God to administer the ordinances of life and salvation unto the
          children of men. Yet the Prophet Joseph Smith in this
          translation, showed forth with great clearness, that the Gospel
          would be revealed, and that it should be received by some of the
          Gentiles; that when it should be received by the Gentiles, it
          should be carried by them to the descendants of Nephi and his
          brethren, who by that time should have become a filthy and a
          loathsome people. The Indians of our continent should receive the
          message of life and salvation. The Gospel should be carried to
          them. They would receive it with gladness. They would come to a
          knowledge of their Redeemer, as well as to a knowledge of the
          principles and doctrines and covenants which their fathers
          understood, and which their fathers had received. Wonderful
          prediction! And most wonderfully has it been fulfilled. At the
          time that the Prophet Joseph Smith translated this Book of
          Mormon, I suppose the impression was general, as it is today,
          that the Indians were a perishing race, that they would soon
          disappear from the face of the land. But before Joseph had
          translated this, he had found in previous predictions that the
          Gentiles--that is, our nation--that we as a race and the nation
          to which we belong, should not have power to destroy the Indians.
          This was a most remarkable statement to make when we consider
          where Joseph was brought up, and the circumstances surrounding
          him. If he had not been inspired of God, he would not have dared,
          in my opinion, and no man would have dared to have made such a
          prediction. But what does Nephi say concerning this matter as
          translated by the Prophet? He says:
          "Nevertheless thou beholdest that the Gentiles who have gone
          forth out of captivity, and have been lifted up by the power of
          God above all other nations upon the face of the land, which is
          choice above al other lands, which is the land the Lord God hath
          covenanted with thy father, that his seed should have for the
          land of their inheritance, wherefore thou seest that the Lord God
          will not suffer that the Gentiles will utterly destroy the
          mixture of thy seed, which are among thy brethren;
          "Neither will he suffer that the Gentiles shall destroy the seed
          of thy brethren;
          "Neither will He suffer that the Gentiles shall destroy the seed
          of thy brethren"--that is, the Lamanites proper. They were not to
          be permitted to destroy Nephi's seed that should be mingled among
          the Lamanites, nor should they be permitted to destroy the
          Lamanites--that is, the descendants of Laman and Lemuel. Nephi
          predicted this. To-day it is said that the Indians will perish,
          and that it is impossible to save them. Here is the word of God
          recorded in this sacred book. We have the words of God, the
          testimony of Jesus Christ arrayed against all, or nearly all, the
          conclusions of the Gentiles. I look around and I see here on this
          stand to-day, representatives of strange tribes of Indians who
          have come here to visit, thus being in part a fulfillment of
          their prediction of the Son of God, and also the fulfillment of
          that prediction of Nephi, that I have read in your hearing. The
          Gentiles did receive the Gospel of the Son of God, when it was
          revealed. Burning with zeal to carry this Gospel to every nation,
          kindred, tongue and people; inspired by the Holy Ghost, they went
          out among the Indian races as well as others, and fulfilled the
          predictions of the Book of Mormon in this respect. And strange to
          say--if anything can be said to be strange connected with the
          work of God--the descendants of those ancient covenant people of
          the Lord, have gladly received the testimony of the servants of
          God. Wherever we have gone and mingled with those people, with
          those Red Men, and been able to communicate to them the truths of
          which we are in possession, which God has revealed to us, they
          have received the same gladly; not only upon this continent, but
          upon the islands of the sea, throughout Polynesia, the Sandwich,
          the Marquesas, the Society and the Navigator Islands--yea, and
          everywhere where those men with red skins dwell, they have gladly
          received the testimony of God's servants concerning the Gospel,
          and they rejoice in its fullness and in the knowledge that their
          fathers once possessed, and of the redemption that Jesus Christ
          has wrought out for them. Most wonderful has this prediction been
          fulfilled in this respect! And God has done and is doing a great
          and a mighty work among the people, fulfilling the words of the
          ancient prophets and of Jesus. When the Gentiles do reject the
          Gospel--as I fear they will from their conduct in the past--that
          is, as a nation--although I trust there will yet be many hundreds
          and thousands--yea, I would that I could say millions--of
          Gentiles gathered in by this Gospel; I trust that this will be
          the case, though the prospects are not very hopeful at present.
          It seems at present that as a nation, the Gentiles will reject
          the Gospel. When they do reject it, as they have in part, then
          God will commence, as the Savior said, to do a great work among
          the house of Israel. He will carry his Gospel there, and the work
          will commence then among all the scattered remnants of the house
          of Israel, over the whole earth.
          I wish to read another prophecy connected with the coming forth
          of this Book, and the results that should attend it, namely:
          "Wherefore the fruit of thy loins shall write; and the fruit of
          the loins of Judah shall write;" [the Prophet here is speaking of
          the fruit of the loins of the Patriarch Joseph, who was sold into
          Egypt by his brethren]; "and that which shall be written by the
          fruit of thy loins" [that is, of Joseph's loins] "and also that
          which shall be written by the fruit of the loins of Judah, shall
          grow together, unto the confounding of false doctrines, and
          laying down of contentions, and establishing peace among the
          fruit of thy loins, and bringing them to the knowledge of their
          fathers in the latter days; and also to the knowledge of my
          covenants, saith the Lord."
          Now, here is a very remarkable prediction connected with the
          coming forth of this Book. It should have the effect, when united
          with the Bible--for it was the Bible that the Prophet was
          referring to as being the writings of the fruit of the loins of
          Judah; when these two Books should be united, it should have a
          remarkable effect--that is, their union should. They should
          confound false doctrine; they should lay down contentions, put an
          end to them and establish peace; and they should be the means of
          bringing the people to the knowledge of the covenants of God with
          those ancient Prophets, with His ancient servants and people.
          Now, all those who know anything about the effect of the Book of
          Mormon--of the preaching of the Elders with the aid of the Book
          of Mormon--know that these words have been fulfilled to the very
          letter. False doctrines have been put down. Contentions have
          ceased. Peace has been established, and the people have been
          brought to the knowledge of the covenants which God made with His
          ancient servants. Those who have read this Book know how precious
          are the words of God, contained in it--how plain the doctrine of
          Jesus Christ is set forth in it. There are no mistranslations;
          there is no mysticism infused into it by men who have had their
          own peculiar views of the doctrine of Christ; for in consequence
          of the taking out from the ancient records (the Bible) of many
          plain and precious parts of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the whole
          religious world is in confusion as to the meaning of certain
          texts. So far as baptism itself is concerned there is no end to
          contention. The Baptists say that immersion is necessary and is
          right. Others say that it is wrong, and that sprinkling is right.
          Others contend for infant baptism, while others say it is not of
          God. Many claim that infant baptism is necessary, and that if a
          child is not baptized, it is in danger of being consigned to the
          regions of the damned. While others, again, contend for the
          pouring of water; and still others who permit the candidate to
          elect which mode of baptism he will have, whether sprinkling,
          immersion or pouring; while men are thus divided upon this
          subject, Paul says there is but one baptism.
          Now, the Book of Mormon comes forth, and it speaks in exceeding
          great plainness upon this point. It not only gives the mode of
          baptism which Jesus gave to His ancient disciples on this
          continent; but the very words to be used. It says that they shall
          immerse candidates in the water; and it gives particular
          directions about the laying on of hands, and about all the
          doctrines of the church of Christ, or of the Gospel. No man who
          reads the Book of Mormon, need be at a loss to know the doctrine
          of Christ. It is as plain as it is possible for the English
          language to make it, and everybody can see it. Therefore, most
          wonderfully, when united with the Bible, has it fulfilled this
          prediction--the writings of the descendants of Joseph, of which
          this Book is the record.
          Another most remarkable prediction is given in this same chapter;
          showing how plainly the Lord revealed to His ancient servants who
          wrote this Book, that which should take place in the last times.
          Lehi in speaking about Moses, said, that the Lord had revealed to
          Joseph the patriarch, that He would raise up a mighty prophet
          named Moses, and that He should raise up for him a spokesman;
          that Moses would not be mighty in word, but in deed. Here is what
          the Lord said unto Joseph the Patriarch as quoted by Lehi:
          "And the Lord said unto me also" [that is, Joseph the Patriarch],
          "I will raise up unto the fruit of thy loins; and I will make for
          him a spokesman. And I, behold, I will give unto him, that he
          shall write the writing of the fruit of thy loins, and the
          spokesman of thy loins shall declare it."
          After the church had been organized some months, Oliver Cowdery,
          Parley P. Pratt, Peter Whitmer, and Ziba Petersen were appointed
          by the prophet of God to visit the western boundaries of
          Missouri. On their journey westward, they passed through the
          western part of Ohio, where Parley had formerly lived and labored
          in connection with the Reformed Baptists. They called upon one of
          the founders of that sect, Sidney Rigdon. They found him in the
          town of Kirtland, gave him a book of Mormon, and bore their
          testimony to him of the restoration of the Gospel. Sidney Rigdon
          said to them: "you tell me a strange tale. I will examine this
          book;" and he commenced to do so. They were all young men, Sidney
          Rigdon was many years their senior. Rigdon examined the book, and
          became convinced that it was the word of God. He was baptized in
          the town of Kirtland, and the foundation of a great work was laid
          there. God afterwards revealed that this man was to be a
          spokesman, and he became the spokesman to this people and to the
          world for the prophet Joseph. Those who knew Sidney Rigdon, know
          how wonderfully God inspired him, and with what wonderful
          eloquence he declared the word of God to the people. He was a
          mighty man in the hands of God, as a spokesman, as long the
          prophet lived, or up to a short time before his death. Thus you
          see that even this which many might look upon as a small matter,
          was predicted about 1,700 years before the birth of the Savior,
          and was quoted by Lehi 600 years before the same event, and about
          2,400 years before its fulfillment, and was translated by the
          power of God, through his servant Joseph, as was predicted should
          be the case, and at a time, as I have said, when there was not a
          man upon the earth who was a member of the church of Jesus Christ
          of Latter-day Saints. The church had not yet been organized, and
          Joseph did not know, unless he knew by the spirit of revelation,
          whether any man would receive the Gospel. I doubt whether he knew
          as to how the church would be organized. He had some idea,
          doubtless; but there were many things which he himself did not
          know, till he wrote this translation.
          Time will not permit me to proceed much further with this
          subject; I wish I had a day to speak upon it; but I am now
          trespassing on Brother Joseph F. Smith's time.
          There is one prediction, however, I wish, before I sit down, to
          allude to, because I think it is most signally fulfilled, namely:
          "And he said unto me, Behold there are, save two churches only;"
          [this was the angel speaking to Nephi in the vision,] "the one is
          the church of the Lamb of God, and the other is the church of the
          This is a new thing. It is supposed there are a great many
          churches. The Lord here says there is but one church outside of
          his own church.
          "Wherefore, whoso belongeth not to the church of the Lamb of God,
          belongeth to that great church, which is the mother of
          abominations; and she is the whore of all the earth.
          "And it came to pass that I looked and beheld the whore of all
          the earth, and she sat upon many waters; and she had dominion
          over all the earth, among all nations, kindreds, tongues and
          "And it came to pass that I beheld the church of the Lamb of God,
          and its numbers were few, because of the wickedness and
          abominations of the whore who sat upon many waters; nevertheless
          I beheld that the church of the Lamb, who were the saints of God,
          were also upon all the face of the earth; and their dominions
          upon the face of the earth were small, because of the wickedness
          of the great whore whom I saw.
          "And it came to pass that I beheld that the great mother of
          abominations did gather together multitudes upon the face of all
          the earth, among all the nations of the Gentiles, to fight
          against the Lamb of God."
          At the time this was written, a man would have been a bold man
          who would have said--that is, unless he was inspired of God--that
          anything of this kind could happen in these United States. One of
          the chief foundation stones of the great fabric of Government in
          this land, upon this continent, is religious liberty--liberty for
          ever creed. Persecution of people for religion was unknown at the
          time this was written, and no man, unless he had been inspired of
          God, could have contemplated such a possibility as that any
          church would be persecuted for religion's sake. Yet here was a
          prediction made by Nephi, 2,400 years before it took place, in
          which he foretold the condition of things in this land, and upon
          all lands where the church of Christ should exist. There should
          be combinations and peoples gathered together, by religious
          influences, against the church of God. Now, what are the facts?
          Among the first persecutors of this church, when its members were
          few, were those who were themselves religious teachers. The
          earliest persecutors of Joseph Smith were religious teachers, and
          the mobs in Missouri, and the mobs in Illinois, were led by
          religious teachers. Even the mob that murdered our beloved
          Prophet and Patriarch, and wounded our revered President--that
          mob was led by a local Baptist preacher, and our people were
          driven from Nauvoo, as Brother Wells well knows, by a mob headed
          by a preacher. And to-day, those who are inciting mobs against
          this people; those who go to Congress, and incite persecutions
          against us; those who fulminate threats and frame petitions;
          those who meet together in conventions; those who gather together
          in conferences, are those who belong to this "mother of
          abominations," this "whore of all the earth," and it is through
          the influence of that accursed whore, that they gather together
          and marshal their forces in every land against the Latter-day
          Saints, the Church of the living God. The blood that has stained
          Georgia, and that cries from the ground for vengeance upon those
          who shed it--that blood was shed by mobs who were banded
          together, headed and aided and egged on by religious men; and if
          it were not for this "mother of abominations," and those who are
          connected with her, we could dwell in peace and in safety in the
          valleys of these mountains. Here in this city, who has done as
          much or more than any one else? The religious teachers, men who
          came here to preach what they call the Gospel. They are stirring
          up strife continually, instead of making peace; going back to
          other religious associations in the east, and telling the most
          abominable falsehoods about us, exciting the public mind, in
          order that they may get money with which to come here and
          accomplish their wicked designs. They tell lies without number
          about us. Our newspapers have exposed such people time and time
          again, and yet they shamelessly go forth and repeat those lies
          about the wickedness of this people, about the intolerance of
          this people, about the dangers they run when here in this
          country, when they know, as we all know who are here to-day, that
          they have never been molested, and that we have never injured
          them, nor interfered with them in any form, but that we have
          always treated them with that respect and kindness with which we
          desire to be treated ourselves.
          In this way, this word of God, through his servant Nephi, uttered
          2,400 years ago, has been and is being fulfilled to the very
          letter. Thus God is bringing to pass in the most wonderful manner
          the words of this Book. It is going forth, as He said it should,
          to all the nations of the earth. It is accomplishing that which
          He designed it should, and it will go forth and accomplish its
          mission. There is no power upon the earth that can stop it,
          because it is the word of God, and the doctrines of Jesus Christ,
          and it will be the means, as has been said, of gathering out the
          honest from every nation, causing them to dwell in peace, uniting
          them in doctrine, and putting an end to all controversy and
          contention concerning points of doctrine, because it reveals the
          Gospel with great plainness unto all those who will receive it.
          Now, I want to read one more prediction and then stop. It is
          contained in the last words of Moroni, concerning this work,
          "When ye shall receive these things" says Moroni, (standing alone
          on the continent, the last one of his race who had been true to
          God, not knowing what his own fate would be; he leaves on record
          for us Gentiles, the world of God, as he was inspired to give it,
          and thus he writes) "I would exhort you that ye would ask God,
          the eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are
          not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real
          intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it
          unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost;
          "And by the power of the Holy Ghost, ye may know the truth of all
          These are the words of a prophet of God, standing in the face of
          eternity, not knowing what his own fate would be. He leaves this,
          his dying declaration, on record, at the close of this glorious
          book, which he was the instrument in the hands of God, of hiding
          up to be brought forth in the latter times. He testifies that if
          we will ask God concerning these things, in the name of Jesus
          Christ, we shall know concerning the truth of them by the power
          of the Holy Ghost. Let me ask this vast congregation: Has not
          this word of God, through his inspired prophet, been fulfilled?
          You men and women and children, who have sought unto God, in the
          name of Jesus, as he commanded you, have you not received, by the
          power of the Holy Ghost, a testimony for yourselves, that these
          things are true, that his is the word of God, divinely inspired,
          written by the finger of inspiration, and translated by the power
          of God? [Yes]. I know that if I were to call for a response it
          would be universal in this congregation, and not only in this
          congregation, but in every congregation of the Latter-day Saints
          throughout all these mountains, and scattered abroad among all
          the nations of the earth. I ask you, at the request of my
          brethren, if this is not true? All who know it is, and have
          received this testimony by the power of the Holy Ghost, say
          yes--[the vast congregation responded "YES" as by one voice.]
          God bless you in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 / B. H.
          Roberts, January 28th, 1884
                          B. H. Roberts, January 28th, 1884
                           LECTURE BY ELDER B. H. ROBERTS,
            Of Centerville, Under the Auspices of the Mutual Improvement
               in the Fourteenth Ward Assembly Rooms, Salt Lake City,
                         Monday Evening, January 28th, 1884.
                           Reported by James D. Stirling.
          At the request of the Presidency of Davis Stake of Zion, I have
          delivered two lectures in each of the Wards of that county. Being
          a young man, I have addressed myself to the young people, with a
          view to strengthen their faith in the Gospel of Jesus Christ,
          which has been revealed anew to the earth in this age of the
          world. And in considering the subject before us to-night--"Joseph
          Smith's Mission"--I desire to show to my young brethren and
          sisters that our fathers have not been following cunningly
          devised fables, but that they have, and so have we, good and
          sufficient reasons for believing in the mission of Joseph Smith
          as a divine one.
          In considering the subject of our lecture, the question naturally
          arises, What was Joseph Smith's mission? It was the mission of
          Joseph Smith, under God's direction, to establish the Church of
          Christ and the Kingdom of God upon the earth; and to the
          accomplishment of this work he devoted the whole energy of his
          life, and was faithful unto death.
          But this statement of what his mission was, gives birth to
          another question: "Is there any necessity for such a work as is
          ascribed to Joseph Smith being performed? The Christian world
          believe that when Christ was upon the earth in the flesh, that he
          then established his Church and Kingdom, and that it has
          continued among men from that time until the present. And
          although many changes have taken place in regard to principles
          and doctrines, and divisions and sub-divisions have distracted
          the religious world--yet they claim that those things which are
          essential to the existence of Christ's Church and Kingdom have
          remained among men. This is their theory. We have a theory which
          is opposite to theirs.
          The first revelation that Joseph Smith received from the Lord,
          was that men were teaching for doctrine the commandments and
          precepts of men, and that He [the Lord] did not acknowledge their
          institutions as His Church or Kingdom, and told Joseph to join
          none of them.
          Here then you see, we have two propositions presented to us; if
          one is true the other must be false; both cannot be correct. If
          the theory held by the Christian world be true, then there
          appears no necessity for such a work as we ascribe to Joseph
          Smith being performed; for if the Kingdom of God has continued
          upon the earth from the days of Jesus until the present, then
          there would be no need of any one being raised up to establish
          that which was already here; and proving that there was no
          necessity for such a work as that ascribed to Joseph Smith would
          be a big stride towards proving that he was an impostor. But if
          we can show that the theory held by the Christian world is
          incorrect,--if we can prove that there has been an
          apostasy,--that men have been following for doctrine the
          commandments of men; if we can prove that Christ's Church and
          Kingdom were not upon the earth at the time Joseph Smith's
          Mission commenced--then the necessity of such a work as we claim
          he performed, becomes apparent; and if there is a necessity for
          such a work as the restoration of the Kingdom of God to the
          Earth, may not Joseph Smith have been the instrument in the hands
          of God, in performing that work?
          Let us consider the question then--Has there been an apostasy? We
          cannot examine this subject in detail. All we shall be able to
          do, is to briefly refer to some of those prophecies which relate
          to the subject. We begin by calling your attention to the 24th
          chapter of Isaiah, commencing with the 4th verse: "The earth
          mourneth and fadeth away, the world languisheth and fadeth away,
          the haughty people of the earth do languish.
          "The earth also is defiled under the inhabitants thereof, because
          they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinances, broken
          the everlasting covenant.
          "Therefore hath the curse devoured the earth, and they that dwell
          therein are desolate; therefore the inhabitants of the earth are
          burned, and few men are left."
          I have had men in the world try to reason away the force of this
          prophecy, in the following manner: They reminded us that Isaiah
          lived in the Mosaic dispensation, when the law of carnal
          commandments was in force; and claim that it was of this carnal
          law of which Isaiah spake--it was the law of Moses that was to be
          transgressed; the Mosaic ordinances which were to be changed; the
          Mosaic covenant which was to be broken. These assertions,
          however, are incorrect--from the fact that the Mosaic law never
          was considered, by those who understood it, "an everlasting
          covenant." It was given for a special purpose, and when it had
          accomplished that purpose, it was laid aside.
          We read from Galatians, 3rd chapter and 8th verse:
          "And the Scriptures foreseeing that God would justify the heathen
          through faith, preached before the Gospel unto Abraham: saying:
          In thee shall all nations be blessed."
          From this it appears that the Gospel was preached unto Abraham.
          In the 4th chapter of Hebrews and 2nd verse, Paul in speaking of
          ancient Israel, says:
          "For unto us was the Gospel preached, as well as unto them; but
          the word preached, did not profit them, not being mixed with
          faith in them that heard it." Not only then was the Gospel
          preached unto Abraham, but also unto the children of Israel. Now,
          let us go back to the 3rd chapter of Galatians, for Paul having
          stated that the Gospel was preached unto Abraham, asks this
          question (19th verse):
          "Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of
          transgression, till seed should come to whom the promise was
          Added to what? Added to the Gospel, which before that time had
          been preached unto Abraham, and also to ancient Israel. But the
          Israelites under Moses, were unable to live the perfect law of
          the Gospel, were not strong enough to overcome evil with good, as
          the Gospel requires, so a law of carnal commandments was "added"
          to the Gospel--a law which included the principle of "an eye for
          an eye, a tooth for a tooth"--a law which was suited to their
          capacity. Paul still speaking of this subject in the same chapter
          of Galatians, already quoted, (23rd verse), says:
          "Before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the
          faith which should afterwards be revealed.
          "Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ,
          that we might be justified by faith.
          "But after that faith has come, we are no longer under a
          From these passages of Scripture, we learn this: The Gospel was
          preached to Abraham, and also to ancient Israel. The Israelites
          were unable to live the law of the Gospel--so a law of carnal
          commandments, known as the law of Moses, was given as a
          school-master to bring them up to the higher law: Christ came and
          introduced that higher-law--the Gospel, explained its precepts,
          and pointed out the difference between it and the law of Moses.
          The Gospel took the place of the law of Moses, which was laid
          aside, having fulfilled the object for which it was added to the
          Gospel. If then the law of Moses was not an everlasting covenant,
          this prophecy of Isaiah's, which we are considering, does not
          relate to it, as the prophecy of Isaiah was concerning an
          everlasting Covenant.
          We find in Hebrews xiii, 20, the following: "Now the God of peace
          that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great
          Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting
          covenant, make you perfect," etc.
          From this we learn that Christ's blood is called the blood of the
          everlasting covenant. Paul in writing to Titus, gives us to
          understand that he lived "In hope of eternal life, which God who
          cannot lie, promised before the world began," and this immortal
          life which God had promised--this everlasting covenant which God
          had made with man before the world began, was sealed by the blood
          of Christ, and this life and immortality were brought to light
          through the Gospel--and is called in the Scripture, the
          everlasting Gospel or covenant; and Isaiah says that the laws of
          the everlasting covenant, or the Gospel laws, shall be
          transgressed, the Gospel ordinances shall be changed: and in
          consequence of these serious transgressions, the earth is to be
          burned, and few men left; which judgment still is hanging over
          the inhabitants of the earth. Having proven then that this
          prophecy of Isaiah's refers to the Gospel, and not to the law of
          Moses, let us remember that Jesus said, "Though heaven and earth
          pass away, not one jot or title of my word shall fail, but all
          shall be fulfilled." Either Isaiah was mistaken when he spake as
          moved upon by the Holy Ghost, in relation to the world departing
          from that order of things inaugurated by the Savior, or else the
          Christian world is incorrect in maintaining that the Gospel in
          all that is essential, has continued from the days of Jesus to
          the present time.
               Some few noted Christian writers more candid than their
          fellows, have freely admitted the apostasy of Christendom. We
          will introduce their testimony. John Wesley in his 94th sermon,
          The reason why the extraordinary gifts of the Holy Ghost are no
          longer in the church, "is because the love of many waxed cold,
          and the Christians had turned heathens again, and had only a dead
          form left."
          The following quotation is taken from page 163, of Smith's
          Dictionary of the Bible. This work is indorsed by the names of 63
          divines of both Europe and America, all noted for their
          scholarship. They say:
          "We must not expect to see the Church of Holy Scripture actually
          existing in its perfection upon the earth. It is not to be found
          thus perfect, either in the collected fragments of Christendom,
          or still less in any one of those fragments." This is a frank
          acknowledgment of all that we claim as to the apostasy of the
          primitive Church. Christ and his Apostles established the Church
          upon the earth, in the days of their ministry, and now we are
          told that it is not to be found even in the collected fragments
          of Christendom--that is, take the principles of truth which each
          sect possesses, and put them all together, and yet from this
          collection of truths we would not find the Gospel of Christ. Let
          us then take them at their word: they have but a dead form
          left--"The Church of Christ is not to be found on the earth."
          These admissions on the part of the prominent writers of
          Christendom, coupled with the sure prophecy of Isaiah, forces us
          to the conclusion that men have corrupted the Gospel, as taught
          by Christ and the Apostles--that there has been an apostasy, and
          it must needs be that God set up His Kingdom again upon the
          By examination, we shall find that the Scriptures predict the
          restoration of the Gospel. It pleased the Almighty, while His
          servant John was on the Isle of Patmos, to show him many things
          that would transpire in the future. While wrapped in heavenly
          vision, he saw, among other things, "Another angel fly 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, saying with a loud voice, fear God, and give glory to
          him, for the hour of His judgment is come." It appears from this
          passage of Scriptures, which you will find in the 14th chapter of
          Revelation, that the angel who is to come with the Gospel, will
          make his appearance just prior to the judgments of God being
          poured out upon the children of men in the last days--"in the
          hour of God's judgment." This Gospel was not to be preached
          merely to one nation or people, but to EVERY nation, every
          kindred, every tongue, and every people. It is evident to my
          mind, that all nations, tongues and peoples must have been
          without the Gospel, or why would it be necessary for the Lord to
          restore it by the ministry of an angel to all peoples and
          tongues, if any of them possessed it? There is another prophet
          who has predicted the setting up of God's Kingdom upon the earth
          in the last days. I refer to Daniel, the Hebrew prophet, who was
          among the captive Jews, who were taken from Jerusalem to Babylon,
          by King Nebuchadnezzar, about six hundred years B. C. The Lord
          gave unto this same king of Babylon a wonderful dream, but he had
          forgotten it. He assembled all his wise men and magicians, and
          demanded that they tell him his dream, and the interpretation
          thereof. If they failed to do so, death was to be the penalty.
          This produced great consternation among the wise men, but the
          Lord revealed the thing to Daniel, who came before the king, with
          the dream, and the interpretation of it.
          The king saw a great image, the head of which was gold; the arms
          and chest of silver; the trunk of brass; the legs of iron; the
          feet and toes, part of iron and part of potter's clay. He also
          saw a little stone, cut out of the mountains without hands, which
          smote the image on the feet and toes, and broke them in pieces;
          then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver and the gold
          broken to pieces, and became as the chaff of the summer's
          threshing floor, and the wind carried them away, but the little
          stone became a great mountain and filled the whole earth. Such
          was the dream. Daniel in giving the interpretation thereof, said
          unto Nebuchadnezzar, "Thou, O King! art a king of kings; for the
          God of heaven hath given thee a kingdom, power and strength and
          glory; * * * thou art this head of gold." (Daniel 2, verses 37
          and 38.) The head of this great image, therefore, was the
          Babylonian kingdom, which flourished in the sixth and seventh
          centuries, B. C., but in 538 B. C., it was destroyed. Daniel
          continues: "And after thee"--Nebuchadnezzar--"shall arise another
          kingdom, inferior to thee." (Verse 39.) The Medo-Persian Empire
          succeeded the Babylonian kingdom, and continued from 538 to 331,
          B. C., and is represented by the chest and arms of silver in the
          great image.
          Again we quote: "And another third kingdom of brass, which shall
          bear rule over all the earth." (Verse 39.) The Macedonian Empire
          succeeded the Medo-Persian, being founded by Alexander the Great,
          and did "bear rule" over the then known world, continuing until
          161, B. C.
          "And the fourth kingdom," says Daniel, "Shall be strong as iron;
          for as much as iron breaketh in pieces, and subdueth all things,
          and as iron breaketh, all these things shall it," the fourth
          kingdom, "break in pieces and bruise." (Verse 40.) The Macedonian
          Empire, founded by Alexander the Great, was pushed out of
          existence by the Roman Empire, which entirely supplanted it in
          161, B. C. The Roman nation is the fourth great nation seen by
          Nebuchadnezzar in the image, and is represented by the legs of
          iron; and as iron breaketh in pieces, all other metals, so the
          Roman nation broke in pieces the other kingdoms of the earth.
          We still have left the feet and toes of the image, which are part
          of iron and part of clay. What kingdom or kingdoms do they
          In the year 364 A. D., the Roman Empire was divided between
          Valentinian and Valens. The western part of the empire was
          assailed by the Goths, Vandals, Huns, and other tribes inhabiting
          the north part of Europe, until it was utterly destroyed 483, A.
          D. From its ruins arose those kingdoms and empires, which,
          to-day, occupy the western part of Europe.
          The eastern part of the Roman Empire was destroyed by the
          invasions of the Saracens, and out of this part of ancient Rome
          has sprung the kingdoms which now occupy the east of Europe, and
          the west of Asia.
          The old Roman Empire, then, represented in the image by the legs
          of iron, was divided and subdivided, until the kingdoms
          represented by the feet and toes of this image are in existence.
          Concerning these feet and toes, Daniel says, "And whereas thou
          sawest iron mixed with miry clay. THEY" Who? Why those nations
          which sprung up out of the ruins of the Roman Empires--"they
          shall mingle themselves with the seed of men, but they shall not
          cleave one to another, even as iron is not mixed with clay." The
          nations now in existence marry and intermarry--"mingle themselves
          with the seed of men," striving in this manner to unite their
          interest, and avert calamity, but all in vain; they do not cleave
          together any more than hard pieces of iron will dissolve and
          become one substance with clay. We have now traced this prophecy
          down to our own times--to the kingdoms that exist in our own
          days. What comes next? Why, says Daniel, "In the days of these
          kings," represented by the feet and toes of the image, "shall the
          God of heaven set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed,
          and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall
          break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall
          stand for ever."
          Not only, then, does John tell us that the Gospel, in the hour of
          God's judgment, shall be restored to the earth by the ministry of
          an angel, but the Prophet Daniel has proclaimed to us, that in
          the last days,) for he says--2nd chapter, 28th verse--"There is a
          God who maketh known unto the king, what shall be in the latter
          days:") the God of heaven would set up His kingdom, and has given
          us the assurance that it would stand for ever. No handwriting
          will ever appear upon the walls of the temples of that kingdom,
          saying the kingdom is divided and given to another people.
          Whatever may be our fate as individuals, we may rest assured the
          Kingdom of God has come to stay.
          Having shown from the Scriptures not only that there would be a
          universal apostasy, but also a restoration of the Gospel, and the
          setting up of the Kingdom of God in the last days, we are now at
          liberty to inquire what the reasons of men are for rejecting
          Joseph Smith as God's instrument in accomplishing this work.
          Is the fact that Joseph Smith was rejected by the world, hated
          and persecuted by thousands, any evidence against his being the
          chosen servant of God, to accomplish the mighty work of setting
          up the Kingdom of God upon the earth in the last days? Let
          history answer that question. How have the servants of God been
          received in all ages of the world? Much in the same way that
          Joseph Smith was. Paul, in speaking of the Prophets, tells us,
          "They were stoned, they were sawn asunder, were tempted, were
          slain with the sword; they wandered about in sheep skins and goat
          skins; being destitute, afflicted, tormented." (Heb. iv, 37, 38).
          Jesus was hated and despised by the world, and finally put to
          death by the wicked. His Apostles and disciples fared but little
          better. Concerning the Apostles, Paul says: "We are fools for
          Christ's sake, * * even unto this present time we both hunger and
          thirst, and are naked, and are buffeted, and have no certain
          dwelling place; and labor, working with our own hands; being
          reviled, we bless; being persecuted we suffer it; being defamed,
          we entreat; we are made as the filth of the world, and are the
          offscouring of all things unto this day." (1 Cor. iv.) Was Joseph
          Smith despised any more than these ancient servants of God were?
          But Jesus says: "Blessed are ye when men shall hate you, and when
          they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach
          you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of Man's sake.
          Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy; for behold, your reward
          is great in heaven; for in like manner did their fathers unto the
          prophets. Woe unto you when all men shall speak well of you; for
          so did their fathers to the false prophets." (Luke vi, 22, 26).
          On another occasion the same Great Teacher said to His disciples:
          "If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated
          you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own; but
          because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the
          world, therefore the world hateth you." And does not the same
          principle hold good to-day? And if Joseph Smith was indeed God's
          servant, would not the world hate him? This principle also holds
          good when applied to the people of God as a whole. If the
          Latter-day Saints were as vile and corrupt, or as ungodly as they
          are represented to be by their enemies, if they were as
          licentious as they are said to be--then as God lives they would
          be of the world: and if of the world, and the principle which
          Jesus laid down be true, then the world would love them: but from
          the fact that this people are hated of the world, we have an
          assurance that they are not of the world: but God hath chosen
          them out of the world, and the world hate them.
          That Joseph Smith was despised, rejected, and persecuted by men,
          is no valid objection to his being the honored servant of God. I
          have heard other objections urged against Joseph Smith: such as
          that he was unlearned--uneducated in the wisdom of the world--and
          this was true. That is, in his youth he was unlettered, and his
          scholastic attainments were limited, but as he grew to manhood,
          his lack of education could scarcely be complained of, as he
          proved himself able to cope with all the scholars of the age.
          It is also alleged that both he and his followers were men that
          came from the humble walks of life, and were not among the
          lawyers, the rulers, and the professors. The same objections were
          urged against Jesus and His followers--His Apostles. But what
          does such an objection amount to? Are not these the class of men
          that God has almost invariably called to perform His work? I read
          the following passage from the first Chapter of I Corinthians:
          "For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men
          after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble are called.
          "But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound
          the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to
          confound the things that are mighty; 
          "And base things of the world, and things which are despised hath
          God chosen; yea, and the things which are not, to bring to naught
          things that are: that no flesh might glory in His presence."
          To say, then, that Joseph Smith's estate was lowly, and that he
          was unlearned when called to the work of God, instead of being a
          valid objection against him, is, to the contrary, an evidence in
          his favor.
          Having thus disposed of the objections made against his being a
          good man and a servant of God, let us next inquire into the
          evidence of his being an instrument in the hands of God, in
          restoring the Gospel, and setting up the Kingdom of God upon the
          earth. What evidences have the Latter-day Saints to offer to the
          world that he accomplished this important work? First, the work
          itself: the institution which he organized--it is an exact
          facsimile of that which Christ instituted when He ministered upon
          the earth. Did the ancient Apostles teach faith in the Lord Jesus
          Christ as the Savior of the world--did they teach salvation in
          His name? Yes, and so do we! Did they teach repentance, which
          includes the forsaking of sin? yes, and so do we! Did they teach
          baptism by immersion for the remission of sin? and the laying on
          of hands for the reception of the Holy Ghost? the resurrection of
          the dead and future rewards and punishments? Yes, and so do we!
          Did they have in the Church Apostles, Prophets, Seventies,
          Elders, Bishops, Evangelists, Pastors, Teachers, and
          deacons--together with other helps and governments in the Church
          organization? Yes, and the same are in the Church of Christ
          to-day, which Joseph Smith, under God, has organized on the
          Did the ancient Saints enjoy the spiritual gifts and blessings of
          the Gospel--the gifts of knowledge, wisdom, faith, healing,
          tongues, interpretations, discerning of spirits, revelation,
          prophecy, visitation of angels, etc.? Yes: and do the Latter-day
          Saints enjoy these things? You know they do, for you are
          witnesses of these things--then this institution exactly
          resembles that which Jesus established upon the earth when He was
          here. It is the same in its principles and ordinances; its
          officers and organization; and the same results--the same gifts
          and graces grow out of obedience to its requirements. If you
          compare the institution known as the Church of Jesus Christ of
          Latter-day Saints, with that institution described in the New
          Testament, you will find they correspond with each other, as face
          answers to face in the mirror. This feat of organizing a Church
          which should in every respect resemble that of Christ's, has been
          the ambition of the learned and pious reformers for centuries
          past; but they have failed. The world, however, are now compelled
          to admit one or the other of the two following conclusions:
          Either Joseph Smith, unlettered youth though he was, has so far
          out-stripped the learning and wisdom of ages, and by the power of
          his own genius accomplished that which genius aided by
          scholarship could not do in previous centuries; or else they must
          conclude that God has in very deed again spoken from heaven, and
          revealed the Gospel and the organization of His Kingdom, through
          Joseph Smith. The first conclusion is absurd; the second is the
          true solution of the mystery, and thousands testify of it.
          Another reason I would offer to sustain his being called of God,
          is--he started right. I have seen a motto somewhere, which reads:
          "Well begun, is half done."
          Jesus, when among His disciples on one occasion, appeared curious
          to know what people thought of Him; so He said to His Apostles,
          "Whom do men say that I, the Son of Man, am!" He was answered,
          that some said He was John the Baptist, others Elias, or one of
          the prophets. "But whom say ye that I am?" Peter answered, "Thou
          art the Christ, the Son of the living God." "Blessed art thou,
          Simon Barjona," said Jesus, "for flesh and blood hath not
          revealed this unto thee, but my father which is in heaven: * * *
          and upon this rock will build my church, and the gates of hell
          shall not prevail against it" (Matt. xvi.) What was that "rock"
          upon which the Church was to be built? It was upon the principle
          of God revealing unto men that Jesus was the Christ--the
          principle of revelation.
          In the Spring of 1820, Joseph Smith, in obedience to the
          instruction given in James--"If any of you lack wisdom, let him
          ask of God, who giveth to all men liberally and upbraideth not,
          and it shall be given him"--was praying in the woods to the
          Father, when he was suddenly enwrapped in a glorious vision. He
          saw a pillar of light descending from heaven--it rested upon
          him--its brightness exceeded the brightness of the sun at
          noon-day. In the midst of this glorious light stood two
          personages: each resembling the other. One standing a little
          above the other, pointing to the one below him said: "This is my
          beloved son; hear ye him."--"Blessed art thou, Peter, for flesh
          and blood hath not revealed this unto thee, but my Father which
          is in Heaven." The same could be said to Joseph Smith now, for
          the Father had revealed the Son to him. "And upon this rock will
          I build my Church." Hence we say Joseph Smith started upon the
          very principle upon which Jesus said He would build His Church.
          Not only did Joseph start right, but he continued right. John,
          the Revelator, said that an angel would bring the everlasting
          Gospel to the earth in the hour of God's judgment; Joseph Smith
          declares that the angel Moroni, who had been one of the ancient
          Prophets upon this American continent, came to him, and taught
          him many principles of the Gospel, and also delivered to him the
          metallic plates containing the Book of Mormon, in which is
          contained the "fullness of the everlasting Gospel." Thus was the
          Gospel restored to the earth, according to the prediction of the
          Scripture. John made the prediction; Joseph Smith declares its
          Furthermore, he received the authority to administer in the
          ordinances of this Gospel as the Scriptures direct. He did not
          take the honor upon himself, for the Scriptures forbid that. I
          will read from the 5th chapter of Hebrews, 4th verse. Paul,
          speaking of those who minister in the things pertaining to God,
          "And no man taketh this honor unto himself, but he that is called
          of God, as was Aaron."
          The question now for our consideration is, how was Aaron called?
          For if we can find out how he was called, we shall then know how
          all other men must be called before they have authority to
          administer in the Gospel. Suppose that on the Statute books of
          Utah Territory, we should find a law which said, "No man shall be
          governor of Utah, except he be appointed as was Governor Young."
          If that law was in force, what would we do if we were without a
          governor, and wanted one? We would turn back in the history of
          Utah, and find how Governor Young was appointed, and then appoint
          one the same way; very well, let us do the same thing in the case
          before us, as they are parallel cases. Who was Aaron called? We
          read in the 4th chapter of Exodus, that the Lord called Moses to
          go and deliver Israel out of Egypt. Moses excused himself, and
          desired the Lord to send some one else, as he was not eloquent,
          but slow of speech. This angered the Lord, and He said, "Who hath
          made man's mouth?" And the Lord promised to be with him, and
          teach him what he should say. Still Moses shrank; so the Lord
          says, "Is not Aaron, the Levite, thy brother? I know that he can
          speak well. * * And he shall be thy spokesman to the people, and
          he shall be to thee instead of a mouth, and thou shalt be to him
          instead of a God." On another occasion, when further authority
          was granted to Aaron, the word of the Lord came through Moses,
          saying, "Take thou unto thee, Aaron, thy brother; and his sons
          with him from among the children of Israel, that he may
          administer unto me in the Priest's office," etc. (Exodus, 28th
          chapter.) From this, then, we learn that Aaron was called by the
          word of God coming to a Prophet of God, calling him to administer
          in things pertaining to God; and Paul states the law--no man
          taketh this honor unto himself, except he be called in the same
          way that Aaron was. Joseph Smith was called according to this
          law. John the Baptist, a Prophet of God, who had held the
          Priesthood of Aaron when on the earth, came to Joseph Smith and
          Oliver Cowdery, and placing his hands upon their heads, ordained
          them to the Aaronic Priesthood, which gave them authority to
          preach repentance, and baptize for the remission of sins.
          Subsequently, Peter, James and John came, and conferred the
          apostleship upon them, which gave them the authority to build up
          the Kingdom of God in all the world. Thus he received his
          authority of God according to the Gospel law relating to this
          But let us come to more positive proof than we have yet
          I read from the 84th section of the Doctrine and Covenants, 64th
          verse, the Lord in speaking to the first Elders of the Church,
          makes this promise unto them through Joseph Smith: "Therefore, as
          I said unto mine Apostles, I say unto you again, that every soul
          that believeth on your words, and is baptized by water for the
          remission of sins, shall receive the Holy Ghost."
          Here, now, is a promise than an impostor dare not make. It is
          placed within the reach of all men to test the truth whether
          Joseph Smith was authorized to make such a promise or not. It is
          just as much a test as that which Jesus gave to the people in His
          day, when He taught them in their temples, saying, "If any man
          will do the will of my Father in Heaven, he shall know of the
          doctrine, whether I speak of myself or of Him who sent me." So
          now we are told by this modern teacher, that if we believe on his
          words, and are baptized, we shall receive the Holy Ghost. If this
          promise is not fulfilled, then it proves beyond all controversy
          that the person making it is an impostor. But seeing it is
          something that man cannot bestow upon another by his own power,
          if the promise is fulfilled, and men do receive the Holy Ghost,
          then it is positive evidence that Joseph was authorized of God to
          make that promise. Thousands can testify that this promise has
          been fulfilled. Most of you in this hall, if called upon, would
          doubtless testify that you have received the gift and power of
          the Holy Ghost. For one I can bear testimony that I have received
          the Holy Ghost, through obedience to the Gospel. It has expanded
          my mind, and enabled me to understand many of the principles
          connected with the Church and Kingdom of God. I have frequently
          felt it thrill from the crown of my head to the soles of my feet.
          I could as soon doubt the existence of the sunlight, as doubt the
          existence of the Holy Ghost within me, and which I have received
          in fulfillment of this promise in the Doctrine and Covenants.
          But I read further, in the same section, "And these signs shall
          follow them that believe: In my name they shall do many wonderful
          works; in my name they shall cast out devils; in my name they
          shall heal the sick; in my name they shall open the eyes of the
          blind, and unstop the ears of the deaf; and the tongue of the
          dumb shall speak; and if any man shall minister poison unto them,
          it shall not hurt them; and the poison of a serpent shall not
          have power to harm them. But a commandment I give unto them, that
          they shall not boast themselves of these things, neither speak
          them before the world." That is, we shall not boast before the
          world that God has promised to deliver us from these things. We
          may learn a lesson from Jesus on this subject--the devil took Him
          to the pinnacle of the temple, and now, said he, if thou art the
          Son of God, cast thyself down, for it is written, I will give
          mine angels charge concerning thee, and in their hands shall they
          bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a
          stone. "It is also written," replied Jesus, "thou shalt not tempt
          the Lord thy God." So to-day, we shall not boast ourselves of
          these things, and tempt the Lord.
          But are these signs and blessings in the Church which Joseph
          Smith established? You, my brethren and sisters, know they are:
          you know that it is a common thing to send for the Elders to
          administer to the sick, and they are healed, and thousands in
          Utah, and hundreds throughout the world, can testify that they
          have seen the power of God manifest in the Church. If these
          promises made through Joseph Smith, had not been realized, it
          would have proven him an impostor; their being fulfilled, is an
          evidence that he was called of God.
          The Lord gave unto ancient Israel a rule by which they might
          prove the men who spake to them in the name of the Lord, that
          they might know whether God had sent them or not; you will find
          it in the 18th chapter of Deuteronomy, 22nd verse.
          "When a prophet speaketh in the name of the Lord, if the thing
          follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the Lord
          hath not spoken; but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously;
          thou shalt not be afraid of him."
          This, then, was the test made; if their prophecies failed to come
          to pass when the wheel of time brought them due, the Lord had not
          sent them. If their prophecies were fulfilled, then Israel might
          know that the Lord had sent them. Since it is claimed that Joseph
          Smith is a Prophet of God, let us try him by this rule. Many of
          his predictions are on record, let us examine them. We must
          confine ourselves to a few, however, for lack of time prevents us
          from making a very extensive examination.
          I call your attention to a prediction recorded in section 103, of
          the Doctrine and Covenants, verses 5, 6 and 7.
          "But verily I say unto you, that I have decreed a decree, which
          my people shall realize, inasmuch as they hearken from this very
          hour unto the counsel which I, the Lord their God, shall give
          unto them. Behold they shall, for I have decreed it, begin to
          prevail against mine enemies from this very hour; and by
          hearkening to observe all the words which I, the Lord their God,
          shall speak unto them, they shall never cease to prevail, until
          the kingdoms of the world are subdued under my feet, and the
          earth is given unto the Saints to possess it for ever and for
          This prophecy was given in February, 1834--a few months after the
          Saints were driven from Jackson County, Missouri. Now, take the
          history of the Saints from that time until the present, and to my
          mind, it appears to be one continual series of triumphs. The
          Saints being driven from Jackson County, did not stop the
          progress of the Kingdom of God. The Gospel was preached more
          extensively, and the fruits of the Elders' labors were more
          abundant; and when five years later the Saints were expelled from
          the State of Missouri, 12,000 were driven instead of 1,200 as in
          the drivings in Jackson County. The only visible effect of their
          expulsion from Missouri, was to give the work fresh impetus. The
          exiled Saints settled in Illinois, started to build a great city,
          and began the erection of a noble temple, at the same time
          sending the Gospel to the European nations. Eight years after,
          when they were again obliged to move, instead of 12,000 going,
          there were 20,000 that began their march for the West. They
          settled in these mountains, and although great difficulties have
          had to be surmounted, still the work of God has been growing; and
          if the Saints had to move again, 150,000 would leave their
          homes--so persecution has not stayed the work of God.
          Again; when the Saints were in Missouri, they had but one temple;
          to-day we have one temple completed and several more in course of
          erection--some of which will soon be finished.
          In 1833 they drove our fathers from a single county in Missouri;
          five years later it was found that they had possession of several
          In 1846, they drove our parents from a single city and its
          surroundings; they came to the wilderness, and founded a
          Territory which we possess; and we are spreading over into the
          surrounding States and Territories, and to-day the cry of Zion's
          children is--"Give us room that we may dwell!" We have prevailed
          against every obstacle--the prophecy so far has been fulfilled;
          and if we will but hearken to the counsels of God, we shall never
          cease to triumph, until the kingdoms of this world are the
          kingdoms of our God and His Christ.
          In Sec. 8, of the Doctrine and Covenants, is the remarkable
          prophecy of Joseph Smith's, relating to the great rebellion of
          the Southern States. Before I read that part of the prophecy of
          which I wish more particularly to speak, I will pave the way for
          it. When reasoning with infidels on the truth of the Jewish
          Scriptures, I have often alluded to the many prophecies in the
          Bible, and then have shown from history that these predictions
          have been verified--hence they were inspired. They would
          generally try to destroy the force of my argument by claiming
          that the predictions were made after the events had transpired;
          that is, they were not predictions in fact, but were written by
          fanatics to deceive mankind. But I wish to show my young brethren
          this prophecy on the war of the rebellion cannot be overthrown by
          such assumptions as these, to which I have just alluded.
          This revelation and prophecy on war, was given December 25, 1832;
          the events it predicts did not commence until 1861--29 years
          after the prophecy was made. I have heard several of the leading
          Elders of the Church say, they carried with them manuscript
          copies of that prophecy in their preaching tours throughout the
          States, and occasionally would red it to the people: better
          still--in the year 1851, Elder F. D. Richards published in
          England a book called, "The Pearl of Great Price;" among other
          interesting matter it contained, was this prophecy on war. This
          was nine years before the war it predicted began. As this book
          was widely circulated both in Europe and America, no one can ever
          use the old infidel argument against it--that is, that the
          prediction was made after the event had occurred.
          I read from the Book of Covenants:
          "Verily thus saith the Lord, concerning the wars that shall
          shortly come to pass, beginning at the rebellion of South
          Carolina, which shall eventually terminate in the death and
          misery of many souls. The days will come when war will be poured
          out on all nations, beginning at that place:
          "For behold, the Southern States shall be divided against the
          Northern States, and the Southern States will call on other
          nations, even the nation of Great Britain as it is called, and
          they shall also call upon other nations in order to defend
          themselves against other nations; and then war shall be poured
          out upon all nations."
          We have already shown that this prediction was made a number of
          years before it began to be fulfilled. It now remains for us to
          prove that the events spoken of, actually occurred.
          It is a matter of history that the first gun fired "in the late
          unpleasantness,' was fired upon Fort Sumpter, from a rebel
          battery in South Carolina, and from there the war spread to other
          States. The trouble started, then, where Joseph Smith said it
          would begin--South Carolina.
          It was to "end in the death and misery of many souls." This,
          however, was contrary to the expectations both of the North and
          the South. The South claimed that in a short time they would be
          able to compel the North to acknowledge them as an independent
          nation. While Abraham Lincoln was equally confident in his
          ability to put his foot upon the neck of the Rebellion and crush
          out its life; his first levy for troops was only for 90,000 men,
          for 90 days. But whatever the expectations of men might be, the
          Lord had said the war should "end in the death and misery of many
          souls." All who are acquainted with the history of the Rebellion
          know that it thus ended.
          I, myself, have visited many of the battle grounds in the
          Southern States. Not long ago I was on the battle field of
          Shiloh, on the Tennessee River, where 20,000 men were killed in
          two days: I have also passed over the battle fields around
          Nashville, Franklin, and Murfreesboro; also over Missionary
          Ridge, Chiamaugel, and Mount Lookout. Last summer I visited
          Richmond, and passed over that part of country where the Battles
          of the Wilderness were fought, where over three hundred thousand
          men laid down their lives in their respective causes; and as I
          called to mind the thousands who had been slain on these battle
          fields I have mentioned, and many others--said: The fact that
          Joseph Smith was a Prophet of God, is written in characters of
          blood to this generation, and yet they regard it not.
          But this war was to end in the "misery of many souls," and when I
          called to mind the sorrow of the sister who looked in vain for
          the return of the brother--the companion of her childhood--when I
          thought of the tears that had fretted channels in the pale cheek
          of the mother who looked in vain for the return of her son, who
          in the buoyancy of youth had gone to do battle in his country's
          cause--when I thought of the wife, who still watched and waited
          for the return of him whose strong arm was to be her support
          through life's dreary march--when I called to mind all the
          anguish these hearts felt, I exclaimed--That Joseph Smith was a
          Prophet of God, is witnessed by the tears and heart-rending sobs
          of these multitudes who have looked and waited in vain for the
          return of their loved ones.
          The Southern States were to call on Great Britain to assist them.
          Did they do it? yes. The Southern States Confederacy sent two
          men, Messrs. Mason and Slidell, to negotiate with the English
          government, with the view of getting assistance; but they were
          captured and brought back to the United States. This is a
          familiar matter of history. England, too, was to call upon other
          nations to protect themselves against other nations. Has this
          been done? To answer that question we have but to allude to the
          treaties now existing between Great Britain and other European
          nations. Thus you see this prophecy, so far as we have read it,
          has been minutely fulfilled--fulfilled in every particular, and
          the rest of it will be, so fast as the wheels of time shall bring
          the events due; and the fulfillment of these prophecies prove
          beyond controversy, that Joseph Smith was a Prophet of God, and
          "spake as he was moved upon by the Holy Ghost."
          There is just one more item I will refer to, and then close.
          It was always a strange thing to me, that Joseph Smith should
          have to lay down his life, until I found the following passage of
          Scripture: it is contained in the 9th chapter of Hebrews, 16 and
          17 verses:
          "For where a testament is, there must also of necessity be the
          death of the testator.
          "For a testament is of force after men are dead; otherwise it is
          of no strength at all while the testator liveth."
          Joseph was the instrument through which God ushered in the
          dispensation of the fullness of times--the greatest of all
          dispensations--in which God will complete His work, pertaining to
          the salvation of men on the earth; it was a great work--Joseph
          was to testify of it--and "where a testament is there must needs
          be," says Paul, "the death of the testator." So when Joseph Smith
          fell by the old well-curb at Carthage jail, pierced by the
          bullets of assassins, he placed the cap-stone upon his mission by
          sealing it with his blood--and from that time henceforth it is in
          force on all the world.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 / Orson
          Pratt, May 11, 1878
                              Orson Pratt, May 11, 1878
                          DISCOURSE BY APOSTLE ORSON PRATT,
            Delivered at a Conference in Paris, Bear Lake, May 11, 1878.
                            (Reported by James H. Hart.)
                                        TO BE
          I am pleased to have the opportunity and privilege of speaking to
          you this morning, and I hope to have your attention while I
          endeavor to lay before you principles pertaining to salvation and
          eternal life, and set forth those characteristics that mark the
          people of God in contradistinction to the people of the world. I
          hope to be so explicit that you may all understand, and that you
          may each receive your portion of the Bread of Life in due season.
          The Church of Jesus Christ is a Church of order, in which it is
          necessary that some persons have authority to teach and counsel
          and preside. The authority of the church in this Stake, is held
          by Prest. Wm. Budge, who represents the leaders of the church,
          and is expected to reflect their feelings and spirit upon the
          people under his presidency. And I must say I feel pleased with
          the spirit that seems to prevail in this Stake of Zion, which is
          an evidence that you have been blessed of the Lord, through the
          ministrations of His servants. And there are still greater
          blessings offered those who will seek after them with all their
          heart; some of which can only be received by earnest faith and
          The Prophets, Patriarchs and Saints in olden times received great
          and glorious blessings, and why should we not be blessed, the
          same as they were blessed? But some will begin to doubt, and say,
          such and such blessings were truly given to persons many years
          ago, but perhaps they are not promised to me. Do we not worship
          the same God, that they worshipped? Have we not obeyed the same
          Gospel and received of the same spirit? When you Elders have gone
          forth on missions, have not the promises of the Lord been
          fulfilled in your behalf? It depends on ourselves whether we will
          receive the glorious blessings of the Gospel or not. If we are
          faithful and diligent in serving the Lord, His promises are sure,
          and His blessings will certainly be poured out on the humble and
          Those who have been sent on missions to the nations of the earth
          have had abundant proof that the Lord is ready and willing to
          pour out His blessings upon them. You were promised that the
          angels should go before you, and open the hearts of the people to
          receive you; and when you have gone among a strange people, some
          of them have recognized you through the dreams and visions given
          them from the Almighty, and they have said: "I know you are a
          servant of the Lord, for you were shown to me in the night
          vision." These and other blessings are given to us on condition
          that we are diligent and faithful. If we fail to receive them,
          the failure is not on the part of the lord, nor in His servants
          who preside over us, but the fault lies in ourselves alone.
          This failure to realize all the blessings and powers of the
          Priesthood does not apply to the elders and lesser Priesthood
          only; but it applies to the higher quorums, and comes home to
          ourselves, who are Apostles of Jesus Christ. We are presented
          before the Church, and sustained as prophets, seers and
          revelators, and we have received oftentimes the gift of prophecy
          and revelation, and have received many great and glorious gifts.
          But have we received the fullness of the blessings to which we
          are entitled? No, we have not. Who, among the Apostles have
          become seers, and enjoy all the gifts and powers pertaining to
          that calling? Still it is our privilege to become prophets, seers
          and revelators, for these blessings were promised us through the
          Prophet Joseph, in the year 1836. Now I don't think many of us
          have attained to these gifts, but it is not the fault of the
          Almighty, but the fault is in ourselves. And can they be realized
          by us? Certainly they can, if we are faithful in seeking for
          them. The Prophet Joseph would not have attained to these
          glorious gifts if he had not lived for them, and he would not
          have held out these inducements to us, unless they could have
          been obtained. These things were renewed at our last fall
          Conference, and they are brought home to us, and it is our
          privilege to live for them and enjoy them in their fullness,
          according to our faith. Brother Charles C. Rich has had visions
          from the Lord, and revelations through which he has been
          forewarned of dangers that threatened him; by which means his
          life has been preserved from time to time. And these are some of
          the gifts of God, and should be cultivated in our feelings and in
          our faith, for God is no respecter of persons, but is willing to
          give to all men liberally, and upbraid not. But all cannot be
          Apostles. Some have to take the presidency in different ages.
          Enoch was chosen in his day, and Abraham and Moses in theirs, and
          Joseph in our day, and unto him was given the power to translate
          the ancient records, and to bring forth abundance of revelations.
          And those who are called to perform special missions in opening
          up dispensations of the Gospel to the children of men, as Joseph
          and others were called of the Lord, He endows more fully with
          these gifts; but this does not hinder others from enjoying
          similar gifts according to His promises, and according to our
          faithfulness. And I have thought the reason why we have not
          enjoyed these gifts more fully is, because we have not sought for
          them as diligently as we ought. I speak for one, I have not
          sought as diligently as I might have done. More than forty years
          have passed away since these promises were made. I have been
          blessed with some revelations and prophecies, and with dreams of
          things that have come to pass; but as to seeing things as a seer,
          and beholding heavenly things in open vision, I have not attained
          to these things. And who is to blame for this? Not the Lord; not
          brother Joseph--they are not to blame. And so it is with the
          promises made to you in your confirmations and endowments, and by
          the patriarchs, in your patriarchal blessings; we do not live up
          to our privileges as saints of God and elders of Israel; for
          though we receive many blessings that are promised to us, we do
          not receive them in their fullness, because we do not seek for
          them as diligently and faithfully as we should.
          The work in which we are engaged has occupied the attention of
          the Prophets in all ages, and they have prophesied concerning it,
          and have rejoiced in contemplating the day and age in which we
          live. The Prophet Isaiah says: "How beautiful upon the mountains
          are the feet of them that bringeth good tidings; that saith unto
          Zion thy God reigneth. The watchmen shall lift up the voice, with
          the voice together shall they sing, for they shall see eye to
          eye, when the Lord shall bring again Zion."
          It is through faith we are made partakers of these glorious
          blessings, for by faith all the blessings promised are to be
          obtained; by faith the holy men of old obtained promises
          pertaining to future generations, and by faith the Gospel has
          been restored to the earth, with the gifts and powers of the holy
          Priesthood, with the promise that it shall never be taken from
          the earth. Joseph, who was sold into Egypt, through his
          righteousness and faith obtained great promises concerning his
          seed who should dwell upon this land. And through faith a portion
          of his seed was brought from Jerusalem and led by the Almighty on
          the borders of the Red Sea, and brought over the great deep unto
          a land that is choice above all other lands, By faith the
          Nephites received the ministrations of the Savior after His
          resurrection from the dead, through the covenants made with their
          fathers. By faith the brother of Jared saw the wonders of
          eternity, and saw the time when the wicked would be destroyed
          from the face of the earth; and like Enoch, Abraham, Moses and
          others, saw all things that were to take place upon the earth to
          the end of time. This latter-day work which occupies our
          attention, was shown to the prophets thousands of years before we
          were born. Don't you suppose they prayed for it, and sought unto
          the Lord to know when these things should come to pass, and what
          should be the sign of His coming, and the end of the world?
          Through faith covenants were made with the Nephite prophets, that
          the sacred records should be preserved and should come forth in
          the last days for the blessing and salvation of their posterity,
          and all others who would receive them. It has been our privilege
          to receive these sacred things, and have withal the fullness of
          the Everlasting Gospel, and if we have the faith that was in
          them, and live as Saints of God, we shall not be careless and
          indifferent, but our souls will be filled with joy and gladness,
          because of the many mercies and blessings that are promised to
          us, in our calling as elders and priests, and as seers and
          revelators. If we lived fully up to our privileges, and attained
          to all the blessings and powers that are promised, and were
          filled with the spirit of the Lord, we should have more
          influence, and our ministrations would be of more benefit to the
          people of God.
          I am glad the Lord has spared my life to behold this day, and
          that I am numbered among His people, a people who have been
          acknowledged of the Lord as His chosen people. We should all feel
          thankful for living prophets and apostles, who have been given
          for the work of the ministry, and for the perfecting of the
          Saints. I rejoice, moreover, that the First Presidency of the
          Church has again been organized, for by the more perfect
          organization we receive greater strength and wisdom, and more
          abundant blessings from the Lord, and I think this increase in
          faith and union, and other manifestations of the spirit are felt
          in this Conference. Every man and woman can feel a renewed
          influence and power, and it is felt in all the quorums of the
          Priesthood. And it is our privilege to so live that we may come
          into possession of all the promised blessings. Among the
          blessings promised by our Lord Jesus Christ, unto those who
          humble themselves, and seek unto him, is that "You shall see my
          face, and know that I am." This does not mean the Apostles only,
          but the promise is to every Latter-day Saint who will comply with
          the conditions, that such person "shall see my face, and know
          that I am." These are some of the promises that have been made to
          the Latter-day Saints through the Prophet Joseph Smith. The same
          promise was made to ancient Israel, through Moses, the great
          law-giver and Prophet who promised that they should all hear his
          voice, and see his face, if they would hearken to his counsels,
          and obey all His commandments. The promise was not to the
          Priesthood only, but every son and daughter of God had the same
          promise, because all are destined to come into the presence of
          God, and behold the glory of His countenance. If we would attain
          to these blessings, and enjoy the fullness of the promises made
          unto the people of God, we must cleanse ourselves form all
          unrighteousness, that we may endure His presence in the world of
          For this reason it was ordered that a tabernacle be built in the
          wilderness; but such was the wickedness of the people, that while
          the glory of the Lord was resting on the mountain, and Moses was
          holding communion with Jehovah in the interests of the people,
          they had induced Aaron to make a golden calf for them to worship,
          in place of the true and living God. And the consequence was,
          they were deprived of the presence of the Lord in their
          journeyings, for He made a decree that He would not go before the
          camp, "but mine angel shall go before them, lest I consume them
          in the land."
          The Lord has been very kind and merciful unto His people in these
          last days. He has known the hearts of this people, and that we
          are willing to serve Him. He saw that we were willing to suffer
          persecution for His sake, and the Gospel's sake, and for this
          cause He has poured out His blessings upon us in great abundance,
          and I hope when these Temples shall be built, and we minister
          therein, and receive the blessings promised us for ourselves and
          for our dead, that we shall be more united, and that we shall
          receive more fully the gifts and endowments that pertain to the
          sons and daughters of God. And then peradventure He will
          condescend to bless us with His presence, as He blessed His
          Saints in the Temple at Kirtland, and the presence and glory of
          His holy angels. It has been promised to Israel in these latter
          days, that the Lord Himself will go before them, and lead and
          guide them, and fight their battles and deliver them from all
          their enemies. What a glorious promise? And we may be assured
          that there will be nothing lacking on the part of our Eternal
          Father, nor in Jesus Christ, His Son, and the holy angels, for
          all are interested with us in the progress and consummation of
          this great and glorious latter-day work, for it is the
          dispensation of the fullness of times.
          How great will be our joy when we attain to these blessings, and
          realize these promises that have been made to us. The Lord will
          dwell in the midst of His people, and the angels will be with us,
          with the ministrations of our Father in heaven; these are
          privileges and blessings indeed, that eye hath not seen, nor ear
          heard, and the glory thereof hath not entered in the heart of man
          to conceive, but the Lord hath revealed them unto us by His
          spirit. Then we shall hear His voice, and see His face, and know
          that He exists, for we shall see His glory and participate with
          the sanctified in the powers of the world to come, for being
          heirs of God we shall be joint heirs with our Lord Jesus Christ,
          and having suffered with Him for righteousness' sake, we shall
          also reign with Him in glory.
          In conclusion, let me exhort you to turn to the Lord, and serve
          Him with full purpose of heart, and be willing to consecrate
          yourselves and all you have unto His service, and so live that
          you can perfect the bond of union that will secure unto you
          eternal life, and bring honor and glory to Him that sitteth upon
          the throne for ever and ever. That this may be your happy lot, is
          my prayer, in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 / George
          Q. Cannon, May 4th, 1884
                           George Q. Cannon, May 4th, 1884
            Delivered in the Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, Sunday Evening,
                    Conference, Salt Lake Stake), May 4th, 1884.
                             (Reported by John Irvine.)
                                   FAITH HAS COST.
          In arising to address you, my brethren and sisters, this evening,
          I desire an interest in your faith and prayers, that I may be led
          to talk upon those points of doctrine or of principles, that are
          adapted to our wants and to the circumstances which surround us.
          It is a great responsibility to arise as a teacher to a great
          people like those who have assembled within this house this
          evening, especially to speak in the name of the Lord, and I do
          not believe that any man should do this unless he can have the
          assistance of that spirit which God has promised to bestow upon
          His servants.
          We who belong to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,
          believe in God; not a God who lived a few thousand years ago, but
          a God who lives to-day; a God who has a voice with which to speak
          to-day, and who has arms and a head, and bodily as well as
          spiritual powers, who can communicate His mind and His will unto
          His children, with the same facility in the days in which we live
          as He did in the days of the Savior and His disciples, or in the
          days of the prophets. If there is any feature characteristic of
          the present age that is more notable than another, it is the
          decay of faith in God. It is a characteristic of our age and
          time, and it is one that is increasingly manifesting itself among
          what are termed the Christian nations. I have myself
          frequently--especially of late years--been struck with the
          contrast between the present unbelief and the faith concerning
          God, which existed in the days when I first went out to preach
          the Gospel, or in the days of my youth. Skepticism is increasing
          on every hand, and if it were not for this Church, and the faith
          that is cherished by the Latter-day Saints, and which they are
          endeavoring to instil into the minds of their children, and of
          all unto whom they have access, there would be no Church of which
          I have any knowledge that, as a church, believes in God our
          Eternal father, as he is described in the Scriptures--a God who
          can hear and answer--literally answer--the prayers of those who
          address Him in faith. The idea has become very prevalent of late
          years, in the so-called Christian world, that God does not
          interfere by any special providence in behalf of any people or of
          any individual; that He governs the universe and the earth upon
          which we stand, and the inhabitants of which we form a part, by
          grand and universal laws, and that those laws are never
          over-ruled. In other words, that there is no special
          interposition of providence in behalf of individuals or of
          peoples, but that the Lord rules by those grand laws which are
          applicable to all, and which all have to submit to, and that He
          does not concern Himself to listen unto the appeals of
          individuals in behalf of themselves, or of those in whom they are
          interested, or to have any special providence extended unto
          nations; and it is this feature of belief that causes mankind who
          are familiar with us, to entertain such ideas respecting our
          future as they frequently indulge in. You will often hear it
          said--I have heard it stated I may say hundreds of times when I
          have spoken to friends who are not of our faith, concerning the
          interposition of providence in our behalf, and the faith that we
          had respecting the deliverances that would be wrought out for
          us--I have been told that God is on the side of the strongest
          battalions, that God is on the side of the heaviest artillery;
          that God is on the side of the greatest numbers; and I have often
          provoked smiles of incredulity by the simple statement of our
          faith in God, and our hopes and anticipations concerning the care
          that He had had over us, the deliverances which He has wrought
          out for us, and the promises that He had made unto us concerning
          the future.
          Upon this point and in this respect we differ, as I have
          remarked, from every people with whom I am acquainted--in this
          feature of our religion, this implicit trust in a God who can
          hear and who can answer prayer, in a God who is not on the side
          of the greatest numbers, unless the greatest numbers are in the
          right; in a God whose power is not exerted in behalf of the
          strongest battalions, nor of the heaviest artillery, unless the
          strongest battalions and the heaviest artillery are in the right.
          We believe, as it has sometimes been stated, that God and one man
          are a great majority, and that when He purposes to accomplish a
          certain work, all the powers of earth and the powers of hell
          combined cannot prevent the accomplishment of that work; that
          there is no power that can by any possibility defeat His
          purposes; and that He will interpose by the exercise of His
          Almighty power in behalf of the individual, in behalf of the
          community, or in behalf of the nation concerning whom He has
          spoken, and who are seeking to do his will. We have proved this,
          at least to our own satisfaction. The history of the people is
          full of illustrations of the most remarkable character
          establishing this truth, so far as we are concerned, beyond all
          controversy; and I am happy to say that this faith is increasing
          instead of decreasing among the Latter-day Saints. I am happy in
          this knowledge. In my associations with our people in various
          places, I find that there is a steady growth of faith in that God
          whom we worship, and in His power to save and to deliver us, and
          in his power to bless us and to grant unto us the righteous
          desires of our hearts. This does not necessarily require a
          suspension of law. It was no suspension of law on the part of our
          Savior, that caused Him to gather from the elements the bread and
          the fishes necessary to feed the multitude. It was no suspension
          of law that caused Him to open the eyes of the blind, or to cause
          the sick to be healed. It was no suspension of law that caused
          Him to ascend in the sight of His disciples after His
          resurrection when He visited them. I know that miracles are said
          to be suspension of law; but instead of their being a suspension
          of law, they are due to a knowledge of a higher law, to a
          comprehension of greater laws, by the knowledge of which, what
          are called miracles are wrought. To a person who never saw the
          effect of electricity, if he were in this Tabernacle and were to
          see these lights kindled instantaneously by the touch of
          electricity--a person who did not understand the laws of
          electricity, would say, "Why this is miraculous." Or to an
          ignorant person, a person who knew nothing of the law of
          electricity, it would seem marvelous that one standing at the end
          of a wire, stretched under the ocean could, by touching that
          wire, communicate a distance of nearly 3,000 miles, and could
          talk to a person at the other end of the wire. Had this been
          mentioned in the days of our forefathers, they would have
          declared it was an impossibility. Such a power would have been
          miraculous in their eyes, and they would have said that such a
          thing was contrary to all known laws concerning the transmission
          of sound and thought; but to us who understand this law--or if we
          do not understand it, who see the operations of electricity; who
          know that we can go to the telegraph office and send a message to
          Europe from this city, and get a reply within a few hours; in
          fact, receive it here at a time of the day earlier than it was
          transmitted from there, which is frequently done. We, who witness
          this, no longer look upon it as a miracle, or as a suspension of
          law, or a violation of the laws which govern the transmission of
          sound or thought. We accept it because we have become familiar
          with it. And so, if we understood the law by which Jesus operated
          when He fed the multitude, it would be as simple to us as the law
          of electricity is today. If we understood the law by which the
          sick were healed, and sight restored to the blind, or by which He
          counteracted the laws of gravitation, and ascended in the sight
          of His disciples into heaven--if we understood these laws, they
          would be simple to us, as all laws are when they are understood.
          There is no suspension of law on the part of our Father when He
          interposes in behalf of His children. He has ministering spirits
          who minister unto those, as the Apostle tells us, who shall be
          heirs of salvation. Jesus conveys the idea very beautifully, when
          He says, that not one hair of our heads falls to the ground
          unnoticed. This was the kind of faith which He taught His
          disciples, and it is the kind of faith that was believed in by
          the ancients, by those who wrote the Bible, by those who wrote
          the Book of Mormon, and it is the faith that is transmitted to
          us, which God is endeavoring to establish in the hearts of the
          children of men, to bring them nearer to Him, and enable them to
          partake of that power which He is willing to bestow upon men, if
          they will follow after Him.
          As I have said, the history of this Church is full of instances
          of this character. When we started out from the State of
          Illinois, and crossed the Mississippi when it was frozen over,
          the leading men of this Church, sending their wagons on with the
          few goods they had, they launched forth into a wilderness, not
          knowing where they were going. Moses and the children of Israel,
          when they left Egypt, had a more definite idea of their
          destination than the Latter-day Saints had, when they left
          Illinois; because the children of Israel knew that the promises
          which had been made to their father Abraham, concerning Canaan,
          (and which was the residence of the heads of their tribes) must
          be fulfilled. The traditions of the people led them to look back
          to Canaan, as the land which they would eventually inherit. But
          there were no such traditions for us to lean upon. Before the
          people stretched an uninhabited wilderness, two thousand miles in
          extent, concerning which but little was known, but the people had
          no hesitation. God has spoken by the mouth of His servant Joseph
          Smith, the Prophet, concerning the Latter-day Saints, that they
          should be in the Rocky Mountains, and should become a numerous
          people, a great people. The Twelve Apostles who then presided
          over the Church, were led by the Spirit of God to organize the
          people into companies, and to encourage them to look forward to a
          journey in the wilderness to a land to which God would lead us,
          and that when we should find it, we should know it was the land
          that He designed for us. There were inviting places in Iowa, for
          Iowa was then comparatively uninhabited. We followed Indian
          trails with our wagons, for there was no regular wagon road. We
          built bridges across the streams of Iowa--that is, streams that
          were not fordable--over which to take our wagons and cattle. The
          whole country was a waste. The Latter-day Saints might, had they
          chosen, have settled there, but the voice of the Spirit was not
          to settle there. We crossed the Missouri River, remained during
          the winter upon its banks and then in the spring the pioneers
          launched out through what is now the State of Nebraska, which was
          then Indian Territory. The fertility of those plains did not
          tempt them to make that their abiding place, but they pressed on,
          not a man in the company knowing where they were going, not a man
          in the company who had ever trod the ground before, or who knew
          anything, by practical experience, of the character of the region
          upon which they were entering.
          Now, this was faith in God. It is easy to say, after it has been
          demonstrated that settlements could be made in these
          mountains--that crops could be raised--it is easy to say that
          this was not much of an undertaking. I am reminded of a story
          told of Columbus. After he had made the discovery of America, and
          returned to Spain, upon one occasion, while at a banquet with a
          number of Spanish grandees, some one made light of the discovery
          he had made, of the voyage that he had undertaken, and the result
          of it. He picked up an egg that was lying near, and asked which
          of them could make that egg stand on end. They all tried it, but
          failed; they could not make the egg stand on end. He there upon
          took the egg, knocked it on the table, and flattened it, and made
          the egg stand. "Gentlemen," said he, "It is easy to make an egg
          stand on end when you know how to do it." It is easy to discover
          a land after it has been discovered. It is easy to talk about the
          settlement of these valleys, and that which has been done here,
          after the work has been accomplished and the problem has been
          solved; after it has been demonstrated beyond all possible doubt
          that this country is habitable, that these valleys will produce
          crops to sustain human life, and that these streams that flow
          from the mountains can be used for the irrigating of these lands,
          and used successfully. But there was a time when there was a
          doubt concerning this. When the pioneers reached this valley,
          there was no doubt in the mind of the man who led the people,
          whatever there might be in the minds of others. His mind was
          clear, and the whole people felt that he had the right from God,
          as His servant, to designate the spot. They had faith to believe
          that God would sustain them in doing what they were told, and
          they planted themselves on this spot, having faith in God,
          believing that He would hear them, believing that He had heard
          them, believing that he would still continue to protect them, and
          fulfill all His promises which He had made, and they proved then,
          if they had not proved before, that God the Eternal Father is a
          God nigh at hand and not afar off. And when the crickets came
          down, as they did in 1848, in myriads from the mountains,
          blackening the whole face of the valley, sweeping off during one
          night fields of grain that were as promising as fields could be,
          and leaving them as bare as the palm of man's hand, even then
          their faith did not fail: they still had confidence that that God
          who had led them thus far would still continue to preserve them,
          and would supply their wants; and when it seemed as though their
          faith had been tried to the very uttermost, when the last point
          had been reached, God interposed by a very natural means. He did
          not come down Himself, that is in our sight, for us to see Him
          visibly; His angels did not come for us to see them visibly; but
          He sent the gulls who came by thousands, and devoured those
          crickets, leaving them in heaps along the edges of the water
          ditches. Having eaten their fill, they then vomited, and having
          eaten again, vomited again, and thus continued the work of
          devouring, until every field was clear of those destructive
          insects. Now, an unbeliever might not have seen the hand of God
          in this, but the hearts of the Latter-day Saints did see His
          hand, and profound gratitude was aroused. Prayers of thanksgiving
          ascended unto the God of heaven for His interposition in our
          behalf. The people felt that their God was still near to them,
          that He still heard and answered their prayers, and granted unto
          them the desires of their hearts.
          And thus it has been from that day until the present time.
          Notwithstanding the many measures that have been taken against us
          as a people, the many plots that have seemed so promising to
          those who framed them concerning the destruction of the
          Latter-day Saints; when it has seemed that destruction was
          inevitable, that no power could save us, God has interposed by
          His wonderful power and we have escaped, and to-day,
          notwithstanding these many efforts, we are a free people in the
          mountains, having the privilege, that God said we should have, of
          worshipping Him, and enjoying peace and prosperity, if we would
          but continue to put our trust in him and keep His commandments;
          so that to day, throughout all these valleys, from one end to the
          other, there is a people found who, notwithstanding all the
          threats that are fulminated, all the projects that are started,
          all the efforts that are made to destroy us as a religious
          organization, to break down our liberties, to rob us of those
          rights which are dear to every man who has been born
          free--notwithstanding these threats, a reign of peace and
          undisturbed quiet prevails throughout all these valleys, in the
          breasts, in the houses, in the family circles, of all the
          Latter-day Saints from one end of this land to the other. A
          grander exhibition of faith, a more sublime exhibition of
          confidence in God cannot be witnessed anywhere upon the face of
          the earth, than is afforded by the example of the Latter-day
          Saints. They do bear witness unto the heavens, unto God the
          Eternal Father, unto holy angels, and unto all men, that whatever
          unbelief may prevail elsewhere, whatever the feelings of
          skepticism may be in other lands, and among other peoples, they
          at least have, unwaveringly and undoubtingly, relied upon His
          glorious promises, and are willing to trust him to the very
          uttermost, believing that He is indeed a God who is, as I have
          said, near at hand and not afar off. In fact, outside of this
          people you can scarcely find a man or a woman who has any clear
          conception concerning God Himself. You ask members of churches,
          "What is your God like? Who is the Being whom you worship?"--and
          the reply, doubtless, of many, would be, "great is the mystery of
          godliness. That is something we do not comprehend." It is a
          forbidden topic, almost. You ask ministers of religion concerning
          the character and form of God, and how few there are who will
          attempt to make any sort of a reasonable answer. They have no
          idea, scarcely. Do they believe Him to be a personal being? I
          have scarcely ever found a professing Christian who did believe
          this. They say God is a spirit. True enough. But has God no
          powers? Is God a diffused substance, filling all creation? That
          is the idea that many have. And you get the professed Christian
          and the professed infidel, and let each of them talk about God,
          and they are as near together as it is possible to be. The
          infidel who has no faith in God, believes in nature. The
          Christian, who professes to believe in God, if he attempts to
          define his God, will describe him something as an infidel would
          the creative power.
          But what is the truth concerning God? Let us hear what Moses
          "And God said, let us make man in our image, after our likeness;
          and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the
          fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and
          every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.
          So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created
          he him; male and female created he them."
          What could be plainer than this! "God created man in his own
          image, in the image of God created he him: male and female
          created he them." Again Moses says:
          "This is the book of the generations of Adam. In the day that God
          created man, in the likeness of God made he him:
          "Male and female created he them; and blessed them, and called
          their name Adam, in the day when they were created."
          Yet with this Bible in their hands, you will scarcely find a
          professed Christian who believes this statement of Moses, that
          God created man in his own image, notwithstanding the fact that
          Paul in two or three places in his epistles, actually says that
          Jesus is the express image of his Father's person. He wrote so to
          the Galatians. He wrote so to the Hebrews. He told them that
          Jesus Christ was the express image of God his Father. And we have
          the fact recorded, that Abraham talked with God, and that Abraham
          plead with God. You remember the occasion when three personages
          came down and visited Abraham. Abraham it is said, talked with
          the Lord, and plead with Him concerning the destruction which was
          about to come upon Sodom. He plead that if there should be fifty
          righteous men found in Sodom, would He spare the city? He plead
          that if there should be but forty-five, or forty, or thirty, or
          twenty, and finally he came down to ten--that if ten righteous
          men were found, would He spare the city? and He promised He
          would. He talked with Him as one man talketh with another. Again,
          we have the record of Moses in Exodus, where he tells us that the
          seventy Elders of Israel ate and drank in the presence of the God
          of Israel. We have the statement also that the two tables of
          stones which contained the law and the testimony, were written by
          the finger of God, by his own finger. And when Moses plead with
          Him that He might see His person, He told him that he should see
          His back parts; but His face should not be seen. He gave that
          promise to Moses, and Moses saw His person.
          Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, whom we worship as God, was a
          man like unto us, so much so that his divinity was not recognized
          through any external signs by the Jews. There was nothing about
          his person that they could discover that would make Him a God,
          the creator of the heavens and the earth, any more than the
          Sandwich Islanders could discover in the person of Captain Cook,
          who discovered their Islands. They believed him to be a god when
          he first came in their midst; but he showed signs of mortal fear,
          by which they knew he was not a god, and they slew him. The Jews
          tested, as they thought most thoroughly, the divinity of Jesus.
          When they hung Him upon the cross, they said mockingly, "If thou
          be the Son of God, came down from the cross." They assumed that
          they would believe and accept Him as the Son of God, if He would
          come down from the cross. He was in all respects a man, so far as
          the outward appearance was concerned; His exterior was that of a
          man; but, nevertheless, He was a God. He was the first begotten
          Son of the Eternal Father, who sits enthroned in glory and
          majesty, surrounded by burning fire. He was the Son of that
          Being, and was the express image of His person, like Him, having
          a head, having the senses that men have, having all the bodily
          features that we have, and His Father was precisely like Him, or
          He, in other words, was precisely like His Father. There is
          nothing more plainly conveyed and taught than this in the
          Scriptures of divine truth, the Bible, and yet men professing to
          teach godliness and to teach God, endeavor to destroy that
          feeling and that faith in the minds of the people.
          When such misconceptions as these exist in the minds of the
          children of men, of course there cannot be correct faith
          exercised; men who do not know to whom to go, on whom to call, or
          to whom to pray. "This is eternal life," says Jesus, "that they
          might know thee the only true God and Jesus Christ, whom thou has
          sent." That was eternal life--to know Him, to comprehend Him, to
          understand the Being that gave us life, that created us.
          Therefore, when a man understands this he goes to God with
          perfect confidence. He asks God as he would his earthly father
          for that which he desires.
          My brethren and sisters, it is a glorious truth that has been
          taught to us, that we are literally the children of God, that we
          are his literal descendants, as Jesus was literally descended
          from Him, and that He is our Father as much as our earthly parent
          is our father, and we can go to Him with a feeling of nearness,
          knowing this, understanding it by the revelations which God has
          given to us.
          I would like to read to you a little to refresh your minds and to
          show you how this faith which had been so long lost to the earth
          was restored; for the memory of it--the memory of what God was
          like, had died out of the human mind. Hundreds of years had
          elapsed since any man had seen God. All that was known,
          therefore, respecting Him, His personality and His attributes,
          was that which was written in the Bible; but through the
          spiritualizing that had taken place, through the attachment of
          double meanings to the plain word of God, it caused the truth to
          fade away from one's minds. There was no man upon the earth of
          whom we have any knowledge, who could tell any thing about God,
          or about an angel. As I remarked here a few Sundays ago, the
          general idea that prevailed in regard to angels was, that they
          were half fowl, that they were men or women with feathered wings
          growing out of their backs. I know that there are creatures
          referred to in the Scriptures, who have wings, but they are not
          men, they are not angels, such as come and minister unto the
          human family. Yet you will see in all the pictorial
          representations of angels in our family Bibles beings dressed
          somewhat like a woman, with features resembling those of a woman,
          and with gathered wings growing out on their backs. These ideas
          became common, and still prevail throughout Christian nations.
          Now, as I have said, the true conception of God, like the true
          conception of angels, had vanished from the minds of the children
          of men. But Joseph Smith, prompted by the Spirit of God, chosen,
          as I fully believe, as the old prophets were, from before the
          beginning of the world, to lay the foundation of this great
          latter-day work, was moved upon to inquire of God. I will read a
          little of what is said concerning this:
          "While I was laboring under the extreme difficulties, caused by
          the contests of these parties of religionists, I was one day
          reading the Epistle of James, first chapter and fifth verse,
          which reads: If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that
          giveth unto men liberally and upbraideth not; and it shall be
          given him. Never did any passage of Scripture come with more
          power to the heart of man than this did at this time to mine. It
          seemed to enter with great force into every feeling of my heart.
          I reflected on it again and again, knowing that if any person
          needed wisdom from God, I did; for how to act I did not know; and
          unless I could get more wisdom than I then had, would never know;
          for the teachers of religion of the different sects understood
          the same passage so differently as to destroy all confidence in
          settling the question by an appeal to the Bible. At length I came
          to the conclusion that I must either remain in darkness and
          confusion, or else I must do as James directs, that is, ask of
          God. I at length came to the determination to ask of God,
          concluding that if He gave wisdom to them that lacked wisdom, and
          would give liberally and not upbraid, I might venture. So, in
          accordance with this, my determination to ask of God, I retired
          to the woods to make the attempt. It was on the morning of a
          beautiful clear day, early in the spring of 1820. It was the
          first time in my life that I had made such an attempt, for amidst
          all my anxieties I had never as yet made the attempt to pray
          "After I had retired into the place where I had previously
          designed to go, having looked around me and finding myself alone,
          I kneeled down and began to offer up the desires of my heart to
          God. I had scarcely done so, when immediately I was seized upon
          by some power which entirely overcame me, and had such
          astonishing influence over me as to bind my tongue so that I
          could not speak. Thick darkness gathered around me, and it seemed
          to me for a time as if I were doomed to sudden destruction. But,
          exerting all my powers to call upon God to deliver me out of the
          power of this enemy, which had seized upon me, and at the very
          moment when I was ready to sink into despair and abandon myself
          to destruction, not to an imaginary ruin, but to the power of
          some actual being from the unseen world, who had such a marvelous
          power as I had never before felt in any being. Just as this
          moment of great alarm, I saw a pillar of light exactly over my
          head, above the brightness of the sun, which descended gradually
          until if fell upon me. It no sooner appeared than I found myself
          delivered from the enemy which held me bound. When the light
          rested upon me I saw two personages, whose brightness and glory
          defy all description, standing above me in the air. One of them
          spake unto me by name, and said (pointing to the other) THIS IS
          "My object in going to enquire of the Lord, was to know which of
          all the sects was right, that I might know which to join. No
          sooner, therefore, did I get possession of myself, so as to be
          able to speak, than I asked the personages who stood above me in
          the light, which of all the sects was right; (for at this time it
          had never entered into my heart that all were wrong), and which I
          should join. I was answered that I must join none of them, for
          they were all wrong, and the personage who addressed me said that
          all their creeds were an abomination in His sight; that those
          professors were all corrupt, they draw near to me with their
          lips, but their hearts are far from me; they teach for doctrine
          the commandments of men, having a form of godliness, but they
          deny the power thereof.
          "He again forbade me to join with any of them; and many other
          things did he say unto me which I cannot write at this time. When
          I came to myself again, I found myself lying on my back, looking
          up into heaven."
          Here is the testimony of one who actually saw the Father and the
          Son. They were as described by all who have seen them--literal
          personages, personages with tabernacles, the Son being the
          express image of the Father. John the Revelator, also saw one
          that was like unto the Son of Man. He describes his person. You
          remember that he fell down and worshipped an angel upon one
          occasion, thinking it was the Lord, and the angel forbade him
          doing so, telling him that he must not worship him, that he was
          one of his fellow-servants, the prophets. John, however, had a
          correct conception of the great truth that the Son was in the
          exact image of His Father.
          Now, not only have we this testimony, but we have the testimony
          of others concerning this matter. Doubtless you will remember, my
          brethren and sisters, what is said respecting this in the vision
          that has come to us. It was a vision that was seen by Joseph
          Smith and Sidney Rigdon. To them was revealed the eventual fate
          of the various inhabitants of the earth, the various glories and
          kingdoms which our Father and God has in reserve for His
          children. Now, say they:
          "And while we meditated upon these things, the Lord touched the
          eyes of our understandings and they were opened, and the glory of
          the Lord shone round about;
          "And we beheld the glory of the Son, on the right hand of the
          Father, and received of his fullness;
          "And saw the holy angels and they who are sanctified, before the
          throne, worshipping God and the Lamb, who worship Him for Ever
          and ever:
          "And now, after the many testimonies which have been given of
          Him, this is the testimony, last of all, which we give of Him,
          that He lives;
          "For we saw Him, even on the right hand of God, and we heard the
          voice bearing record that He is the Only Begotten of the Father--
          "That by Him, and through Him, and of Him the worlds were and are
          created, and the inhabitants thereof are begotten sons and
          daughters unto God."
          These two men of our day (fifty-two years ago last February)
          beheld the Son of God--Jesus, the Only Begotten--and they saw Him
          at the right hand of the Father, occupying the position that has
          always been assigned to Him, and in the express image of His
          Father's person, as He is described by all who have seen Him.
          After this, Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery both saw the Savior,
          and both testified as to His person. This was on April 3rd, 1836,
          after the completion of the Kirtland Temple.
          "The vail was taken from our minds," say they, "and the eyes of
          our understanding were opened.
          "We saw the Lord standing upon the breastwork of the pulpit
          before us, and under His feet was a paved work of pure gold in
          color like amber.
          "His eyes were as a flame of fire, the hair of His head was white
          like the pure snow, His countenance shone above the brightness of
          the sun, and His voice was as the sound of the rushing of great
          waters, even the voice of Jehovah, saying--
          "I am the first and the last, I am He who liveth, I am He who was
          slain, I am your advocate with the father."
          Oliver Cowdery, as well as Joseph Smith, saw this vision; they
          beheld this glorious personage, even the Son of God, when He
          accepted the Kirtland Temple after its dedication. These
          witnesses are also supplemented by hundreds of others who have
          beheld in vision and otherwise, glorious personages in these last
          days. There are men alive who have beheld the Son of God, who
          have heard His voice, and who have been ministered unto by Him in
          this our day and generation. In the face of these testimonies,
          which cannot be impeached successfully, is it any wonder that
          faith grows in the hearts of the people of God, the Latter-day
          Saints? That notwithstanding the growth of skepticism outside of
          this Church, faith continues to manifest itself and find lodgment
          in the hearts of the Latter-day Saints? But just as faith grows
          among the Latter-day Saints, as a natural consequence faith will
          decrease in the hearts of those who reject this testimony
          concerning the truth. This was the crime, the great sin, at
          least, of the Jewish nation. Light came into the world, but men
          chose darkness rather than light; therefore the light that was in
          them became darkness. The Jewish nation became abandoned to
          hardness of heart and unbelief. They were left to be prey to that
          spirit of unbelief which they encouraged, until they rejected
          God, until they rejected the Son of God, with all His divinity,
          with His great miracles, with His mighty power, with His pure and
          spotless life--they rejected Him, they slew Him, and the light
          that was in them became darkness. He bestowed remarkable power
          upon those who received His word and they increased in faith; but
          those unto whom they preached, those who heard their testimony
          and rejected it, became a prey to that other influence, the power
          of darkness, the power of Satan, and they shed the blood of
          innocence, and I am sorry to say that this is the case at the
          present time with our own nation. The blood of righteous men has
          been cruelly, inhumanly shed upon this free soil. This man who
          beheld these visions; this man, the first for hundreds of years
          who described, who could describe the personage of God, who could
          say that he beheld Him, who arose as a mighty witness in the
          midst of this generation to say of a truth that God lived, that
          Jesus lived; this man was cruelly, treacherously and inhumanly
          murdered; and murdered, too, under the pledged honor of one of
          the sovereign States of this our nation; the Governor of the
          State himself, pledging his own honor and the honor of the State
          that he (Joseph Smith) should be protected, but he was cruelly
          slain like the prophets who had gone before, who had borne a
          similar testimony. He sealed his testimony with his blood,
          declaring to the very last that that which he had testified of
          was the truth, willing to die if it were necessary, to seal his
          testimony and render it so unimpeachable that it never could be
          questioned from that time forward. This man was thus slain, and
          who is there that has been punished for it? No more than the
          murderers of the Prophets were punished in ancient days, no more
          than the murderers of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ were
          punished, no more has it been the case in this instance. No, his
          blood still stains the soil, still cries, with the blood of all
          the martyrs, unto God in heaven for vengeance on his guilty
          murderers. And the testimony that he bore has been borne by
          others, and in like manner others have shared that fate. Our
          reverend President, who sits to-night in this place, his blood
          stains the same soil. He himself narrowly escaped the same fate.
          In the providence of God he was spared for a wise purpose, and
          has lived among us until this day--a living martyr, a living
          witness of the cruelty of man towards those who testify that God
          My brethren and sisters, the faith that we have received has cost
          the best blood of this century. The faith that we have received
          cost the blood of the Son of God when He taught it to men upon
          the earth. The faith that we have received cost the blood of
          Isaiah, of Jeremiah, and of others of the prophets who were slain
          for the truths that they declared. It has always been a costly
          sacrifice, this teaching of the truth unto the human family. The
          adversary has been determined that a knowledge of God shall not
          spread among the people if he can prevent it. He killed Jesus, he
          killed every one of His apostles that he could, until throughout
          the wide earth there was no man who could stand up and say to the
          people, "Thus saith the Lord," or who could stand up in the
          authority of the Priesthood of the Son of God and say, "I am
          God's servant, and this is God's will, God having revealed it to
          me." They stopped the mouths of all such. They closed them in
          death. No one was left that they could reach. Then, when the
          heavens became as brass over the heads of the children of men, a
          church arose having a form of godliness, but denying the power
          thereof, until to-day, throughout Christendom, men who profess to
          be ministers of Jesus Christ, do not know anything about Him,
          have no communication with Him. A king with ambassadors here, and
          these ambassadors receive no communication from the court which
          authorizes them. What nonsense! Whoever heard of such a thing? Is
          there anything in this book (the Bible) which hints at such a
          thing? Who ever heard of a servant of God having no knowledge of
          him, no revelation from him? There is no such thing in this book.
          It is reserved for men in the nineteenth century, and preceding
          centuries, to arise and make such claims as these, and who can
          believe them?
          Now, God has restored the everlasting Gospel to the earth. He has
          told the children of men that if they will come unto Him and obey
          His commandments, they shall receive a testimony of the truth of
          this work, as in times of old, through the gift and power of the
          Holy Ghost. They do not need to depend on Joseph Smith if he were
          here, or Oliver Cowdery, or Sidney Rigdon. Others have been
          administered to. Others have received the Holy Ghost. This is the
          privilege of every human being who will keep the commandments of
          the Almighty. It is not the privilege of all to see the Father at
          present, or to see the Son. Our faith is not strong enough, but
          it is growing. But it is the privilege of every human being to
          receive the gift of the Holy Ghost, if he or she will obey the
          commandments of God. This is a privilege that is universal. It is
          like the air that we breathe. It is like the light that illumines
          our eyes. So with the gift of the Holy Ghost. It is given to
          every soul that will bow in submission to the will of God, keep
          his commandments, and have the ordinances administered by one
          whom God recognizes as his servant. It is this, my brethren and
          sisters, that is the glorious feature of the work in which we are
          engaged. It is this that should stimulate us, and fill us with
          faith. Let men do as they please concerning this work of our God,
          God has made promises concerning it. His word cannot fail. He
          bears and answers the prayers of His children. He is near at hand
          and not far off, and He will interpose by His wonderful
          providence, invisible to those who do not see His hand and do not
          have His Spirit, but visible to those who are enlightened by his
          Spirit, so that they can see and acknowledge the manifestations
          of God in their behalf. And thus are we led, and thus we shall be
          led until, emerging from this darkness, emerging from this
          unbelief, we shall be ushered into the fullness of the glory of
          our God, and dwell with him eternally, if we are faithful to the
          covenants which we have made, which I ask may be the case in the
          name of Jesus, Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 / John
          Taylor, June 15th, 1884
                            John Taylor, June 15th, 1884
                         DISCOURSE BY PRESIDENT JOHN TAYLOR,
                     Delivered in the Tabernacle, Cache County,
                         Sunday Afternoon, June 15th, 1884.
                              Reported by John Irvine.
                                    SINGULAR AND
                                     SHOULD SEEK
                                      SHOULD BE
          I have been very much interested while listening to the remarks
          made by the brethren who have addressed us, and certain thoughts
          have passed through my mind associated therewith, which it may
          not be amiss, in part at least, to make known.
               There are certain circumstances which take place in our
           associations with the things of God that tend to lead our minds
           to reflection and thought. We have been building a temple here.
               We have exerted ourselves for a number of years for the
          accomplishment of that object. We have completed it, it has been
           accepted by the Lord, and we are now administering therein. In
          these administrations there are many things that tend to lead men
          to thought and reflection. We meet in our congregations as we are
          doing here to-day, and in thus meeting we pass along through the
            common routine of religious duties which devolve upon us; but
                when we go into those sacred places there are certain
          requirements made of us, that, whether we may have thought about
          these things before or not, are then brought to our remembrance.
          In the first place people desirous to go and attend to ordinances
           in these houses, must have a recommendation from their Bishop.
           That is one of those--I was going to say--ugly facts. That is,
           ugly to those who are not prepared to pass through that ordeal,
          whose lives have been careless, whose actions have been improper,
           and whose standing perhaps is precarious--that is one of those
             facts that must be faced. Then when they have obtained this
             recommendation from the Bishop, it must be endorsed by the
           President of the Stake, and after that have the sanction of the
          President of the Church. This is quite an ordeal for many men to
             go through. For men and women who are upright, virtuous and
          honorable, it is a very simple matter; there is no difficulty in
            their way at any time; but to those who have been careless of
            their duties, who have departed from the laws of God, and who
          have tampered with, or violated the ordinances of the Gospel--to
           such people it is a critical time. However, there is something
          far more difficult than that yet to come. That is only a starting
            point in these matters. The things that are ahead are a great
           deal more difficult to accomplish. What are they? The time will
          come when we shall not only have to pass by those officers whom I
           have referred to--say, to have the sanction and approval of our
          Bishop, of the President of the Stake and of the President of the
           Church--but we are told in this book [the Book of Doctrine and
          Covenants] that we shall have to pass by the angels and the Gods.
            We may have squeezed through the other; we may have got along
           tolerably well, and been passed and acted upon, and sometimes a
            "tight squeak" at that; but how will it be when we get on the
          other side, and we have the angles and the Gods to pass by before
           we can enter into our exaltation? If we cannot pass, what then?
          Well, we cannot, that is all. And if we cannot, shall we be able
            to enter into our exaltation? I think not. What do you think
                                      about it?
          A great many things of this kind are continually presenting
          themselves before me. All kinds of cases are brought to my
          attention, and some of them are of a very serious nature. I had a
          case only this morning. I am not going to mention names, nor to
          expose persons; but it was a case of a sister who had been
          married to a man, actually sealed to him, in the endowment House.
          The man, from what I was given to understand--of course I do not
          know all the details of the case, it will have to be inquired
          into by myself and others in authority--the man had frequently
          one leg in the Church, and the other out; sometimes doing well,
          and sometimes not doing well; sometimes in good fellowship,
          making acknowledgements, etc., and sometimes not in good
          fellowship. The woman had quite a large family by this man, and
          finally, a little before his death, the man became very careless,
          very indifferent, and very negligent pertaining to his duties,
          and he died in that condition. Now this woman comes along and
          says, "What am I to do? I have borne quite a large family to this
          man. He was a tolerable good man in some things, but he did not
          magnify his calling nor honor his God. Now, what shall I do?"
          Here are some very singular questions, and they will come to all
          of us in some shape or another, and we might as well begin to
          look at them now as at any other time, for it is written: "Some
          men's sins are open before hand, going before to judgment: and
          some men they follow after;" hence the reason I mention this
          matter. It is a sample of a great many others, sometimes with the
          man and sometimes with the woman, and the question is: How far
          are we prepared to say to such a woman, "You are not safe for
          eternity with the husband that you have been associated with in
          time"? These are serious questions. That man was dreaming,
          perhaps, for a long while that he was on his way to heaven and
          that all was right; that he had been baptized and been received
          into the Church, and attended to some of the ordinances thereof,
          but he was negligent, careless and indifferent about the
          fulfillment of his duties, neglected his children, did not act
          right towards his wife, and did many things that were wrong and
          improper. Now, what shall be done? The woman felt unsafe with
          such a man. But is it not said, says one that all manner of sins
          and blasphemy shall be forgiven, (except the sin against the Holy
          Ghost, which is the shedding of innocent blood) and that they
          shall come forth, if they have had certain blessings sealed upon
          them "in the first resurrection, and if it be after the first
          resurrection in the next resurrection." But the question is: If a
          woman is expecting a man to exalt her, and to lead her forth to
          thrones and principalities, powers and dominions, is she safe in
          that expectation? She may have been sealed to him, and he have
          had these things pronounced upon him, but he may have been
          destroyed in the flesh, because of his iniquities, which very
          many have been, although we could not always tell the reason why.
          There are certain things that men may commit according to the
          Scriptures, and to that which has been revealed in our day, which
          render them subject to be turned over to the buffettings of
          Satan, "for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be
          saved in the day of the Lord Jesus." (See 1st, Corinthians, verse
          5; also Doctrine and Covenants, Section cxxxii, 26.) There are
          other sins that they may commit, whereof it says they shall be
          destroyed, whether men or women, that do these things. Now, it
          may be well enough to fix up our own affairs as we think they
          ought to be fixed, to make our own calculations, and to settle
          our own accounts; but these accounts have yet to be supervised
          and settled before those that have the right to do it before we
          get through, and we must not only pass by, as I have said, our
          Bishops, and our Presidents of Stakes, and the President of the
          Church, but we must pass by the angels and the Gods also.
               Some of the brethren mentioned that we are now on a more
          elevated plane than we were a while ago. We ought to be. We do
          not expect to remain in the position that we were. We ought to be
          increasing in intelligence and in knowledge, and be preparing
          ourselves for those things that are to come. Yet we find men that
          are careless, such as the person I have referred to. By and by
          death comes along, they pass out of existence; and while it is
          the feeling and desire to do the dead man justice, and all men
          justice, and to act upon correct principles in regard to all, it
          would scarcely seem just under some of those circumstances to
          carry our charity so far that we would unite a woman with a man,
          who, when he came forward and wanted to pass by the angels and
          the Gods, they said to him, "Stop! and take another course. You
          have not yet paid the penalty of your wickedness, and the
          contempt of God's laws and His kindness. You cannot come forth in
          this first thousand years; you must wait for the second." Then
          what of the children, and what of the wife who perhaps has been
          faithful, and might have been in very different circumstances, if
          she had not attached herself to a man of that description?
          These are things for us to reflect upon. We shall not have
          everything our own way about these matters. When we pass out of
          this world we are left at the mercy of somebody else. If we are
          resurrected it will be because Jesus is the resurrection, and
          there are eternal laws and principles that will have to be met by
          us all, and that cannot be avoided. Jesus says: "I am the
          resurrection and the life; he that believeth in me, though he
          were dead, yet shall he live: and whosoever liveth and believeth
          in me shall never die." Certain ones will come forth in the first
          resurrection, and others will not come forth until the second.
          For the path of the just is upward and onward all the time, while
          the path of the unjust is downward.
          These are questions, I say, for us to reflect upon. If we are the
          Saints of God, it is necessary we should begin to learn to do the
          will of God on the earth as it is done in the heavens: for it is
          not ever one that sayeth, Lord, Lord, that shall enter into
          Christ's kingdom, but he that doeth the will of the Father who is
          in heaven. We think sometimes we can do as we please. We may do
          as we please, and then God will do as He pleases; and for every
          word and for every secret thought we shall be brought to
          judgment, we are told.
          Some of these things when we reflect upon them are matters of
          very great importance. We are not here to do our own will, but
          the will of our heavenly Father. Some men who think they are
          doing pretty well, and doing, according to their own expression,
          "as they darned please," will wake up to find they have not been
          doing the will of God. They may have thought that they had wives
          and children, but they will wake up to find that they have not
          got them, and that they are deprived of many of those great
          blessings they anticipated enjoying. With all of our mercy,
          kindness and tender feeling towards our brethren and sisters, and
          towards all people, we cannot violate the law of God, nor
          transgress those principles which He has laid down with impunity.
          He expects us to do those things that are acceptable before Him,
          and if we don't we must pay the penalty of our departure from
          correct principle.
          These are things that are of very great moment, and this building
          on the hill [the Temple] is one of those things which brings us
          face to face with many very important facts associated with the
          present, with the past and with the future. Whatever we may think
          about it, all things are open and naked before Him with whom we
          have to do. As it is written: "Hell is naked before Him, and
          destruction hath no covering," and how much more the hearts of
          the children of men?
          We are here to accomplish the purposes of God, to build up His
          Zion, and to establish His Kingdom upon the earth, and He expects
          us to do it. He expects that we will begin to do His will upon
          the earth as it is done in the heavens--here in this land of Zion
          among the Latter-day Saints. If we do not do it we shall, as has
          been remarked by Brother Cannon, dishonor ourselves. It is
          proper, therefore, for us to consider well and ponder the path of
          our feet. It is well for us to find out the standing we occupy in
          the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. It is well for
          us to realize how we stand, first, with our God, secondly with
          the Holy Priesthood, thirdly, with our families, with our wives
          and children, or with our husbands and children, as the case may
          be, and furthermore that we deal justly and righteously with all
          men. We cannot run our own way and have the blessing of God.
          Every one who attempts it, will find he is mistaken. God will
          withdraw His Spirit from such, and they will be left to
          themselves to wander in the dark, and go down to perdition. It is
          expected of us that we shall move on a higher plane, that we
          shall feel that we are the children of God, that God is our
          Father, and that He will not be dishonored by disobedient
          children, or by those who fight against His laws and His
          Priesthood. He expects us to live our religion, to obey His laws
          and keep His commandments.
          This Temple, as I have already said, is a place where among other
          things, eternal covenants and obligations are entered into, and
          the question is, How and in what manner shall they be performed,
          and who are worthy and who are unworthy. There are some things
          that we find it exceedingly difficult to decide upon. Why?
          Because the parties that are dead are not here to speak for
          themselves, and we cannot have them misrepresented or robbed of
          their rights in any shape. But if they have violated the laws of
          God, what then? Now, here comes a question to which I desire to
          draw the attention of the authorities of this Stake. There are
          many of those men (if what we hear about them is correct) who
          ought to have been cut off from the Church. But they have not
          been; the Bishops have been negligent, and perhaps the President
          of the Stake has been negligent. I am not speaking particularly
          of this Stake; I am speaking in general terms. I speak of it to
          draw the attention of Presidents of Stakes, Bishops, Elders,
          Priests, Teachers and Deacons, and those who officiate in the
          Church of God, and all men who are set to watch over the fold of
          Christ. If some of these men, that I have referred to, had been
          brought up on certain occasions, they might have repented of
          their sins and placed themselves right; but because these
          officers did not do their duty themselves, and did not see that
          other men did theirs, things have passed along out of order, and
          the parties in question have gone behind the veil. What account
          can we give of ourselves if we are found thus negligent? If
          people do wrong let them be brought up, and let the Teachers,
          Priests, and Bishops clear their garments of them, and feel that
          they have done their duty and purified the Church so far as they
          could. The Presidents of Stakes should see that these things are
          carried out according to the laws of God. This is a standard we
          must attain to, so that when people say, Can we go into the
          Temple of the Lord? we may know exactly their status, what
          position they occupy, and what to do with them, without having to
          take up the records of the dead. These are responsibilities
          devolving upon us. Our Elders go abroad to preach the Gospel and
          to gather in the people. When they are thus gathered the
          Presidents of Stakes, the Bishops, Priests, Teachers and Deacons
          are expected to watch over them, and see that they are fulfilling
          their obligations, or that they are not fulfilling them. If they
          fail to do their duty, let them be brought to account; let them
          be dealt with according to the laws of God. If they repent,
          forgive them; but it is expected that all who have taken upon
          them the name of Christ will obey the laws of God, and walk in
          obedience to His commands. These are some things that we all of
          us have to be responsible for, and therefore, I, occupying the
          position that I do, feel it my duty to lay these things before
          you and to require them at your hands--that is at the hands of
          the President of the Stake and his Counselors, at the hands of
          the Bishops and their Counselors, at the hands of the High
          Council, and at the hands of the Priests, Teachers, and Deacons;
          for I don't want to carry myself the sins of the people. God
          expects us to purge ourselves from iniquity, that we may become
          the chosen of the Lord, and our offspring with us, not in name or
          in theory, but indeed and in truth, and according to the laws of
          life, and the spirit that dwells in Jesus Christ, our Savior,
          which every one of us ought to have dwelling in us and dwelling
          and abiding in our habitations, that we may feel that we are
          devoted to our God, blameless before the Lord, and keeping His
          These are things that it is proper for us to reflect upon. We
          enter into obligations here as young men or young women, or as
          old men or old women, as the case may be, no matter what or how
          we enter into covenants before God, holy angels and witnesses,
          and pledge ourselves in the most solemn manner to be true to
          these covenants, and if we violate these covenants, and trample
          under foot the ordinances of God, we ought to be dealt with by
          the Church, and either repent of our sins or be cut off from the
          Church, so that by purging the Church from iniquity, we may be
          acceptable before God. For the Gods spoken of, are not going to
          associate with every scalawag in existence; scalawags are not
          going where they are; and if men do not live according to the
          laws of the Celestial kingdom, they are not going into a
          Celestial glory; they cannot pass by the angels and the Gods, who
          are set to guard the way of life. Straight is the gate and narrow
          is the way that leads to life, and few there be that find it.
          Is God merciful? Yes. Will He treat His children well? Yes. He
          will do the very best He can for all. But there are certain
          eternal laws by which the Gods in the eternal worlds are governed
          and which they cannot violate, and do not want to violate. These
          eternal principles must be kept, and one principle is, that no
          unclean thing can enter into the Kingdom of God. What, then, will
          be the result? Why, the people I have referred to--people who do
          not keep the Celestial law--will have to go into a lesser
          kingdom, into a terrestrial, or perhaps a Telestial, as the case
          may be. Is that according to the law of God? Yes. For if they are
          not prepared for the Celestial kingdom, they must go to such a
          one as they are prepared to endure. Certain principles have been
          developed, and a great many have not. But we are here in a school
          to learn, and it is for the Elders of Israel who are desirous to
          do the will of God, and keep His commandments, to put themselves
          in the way of doing so, to seek to the Lord for His guidance and
          direction, to repent of their follies, their nonsense and
          wickedness of every kind, and to come out for God and His
          kingdom, and to seek to build up the Zion of God and the kingdom
          of God upon the earth, and if we do this, God will bless us and
          exalt us in time and throughout the eternities that are to come.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 / George
          Q. Cannon, May 25th, 1884
                          George Q. Cannon, May 25th, 1884
                    Delivered in the Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                          Sunday Afternoon, May 25th, 1884.
                             (Reported by John Irvine.)
                           CHURCH--SALVATION FOR THE DEAD.
          President Cannon commenced by reading the 4th chapter of Malachi,
          after which he said:
          In rising to address you this afternoon, my brethren and sisters,
          I do so relying upon the assistance of your faith and prayers,
          that the remarks which I may be led to make may be such as shall
          be adapted to your circumstances, and as shall prove a benefit to
          us all.
          As you know, we have just returned from dedicating the Temple
          that has been completed at Logan. We have had during our absence
          and our meetings there a most delightful time. I think that every
          one who was present felt it to be such, and that we have been
          greatly favored of God in being permitted to finish one more
          temple in which the ordinances of life and salvation can be
          attended to. There has been great rejoicing over its completion,
          and those who have been engaged in it have labored very
          assiduously. They have been untiring in their efforts and
          exceedingly liberal in furnishing the necessary means to
          accomplish the great work.
          It is very encouraging to think that, in the midst of the
          assaults which are being made upon the Church of Jesus Christ of
          Latter-day Saints, and the threats that are in circulation
          concerning us and our future fate, there is faith enough found in
          the midst of the people to pursue, without discouragement and
          without cessation, the great work which we feel that our Father
          has laid upon us. We have not been situated as we were in Nauvoo,
          when we finished our temple there, for then the workmen who
          labored upon it, were like the Jews in the days of Nehemiah, when
          they undertook to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem, and had to
          labor a portion of the time at least, and a great portion of it
          too, with their instruments of labor in one hand, and weapons to
          defend themselves in the other. We were surrounded by mobs, and
          living in a constant state, it may be said of fear, because of
          the threats which were made and the combinations which were
          formed, and the attacks upon our outlying settlements in the
          burning of houses, in the destruction of grain, in the shooting
          down of cattle, and in the driving out of the people from their
          homes. But while we have not been in this condition through the
          years that we have been engaged in the erection of the Logan
          Temple, we have not been free from attacks and from threats and
          from combinations for our destruction. Had we been prompted by
          the ordinary faith of man, the hands of the people would have
          been weakened in this great work, and they would have hesitated
          in its performance. But no such feeling has been manifested or
          expressed. Undismayed and undiscouraged by all the surrounding
          circumstances, the people have pressed forward the work, and have
          now the joy and satisfaction of witnessing its completion. It
          seems as though in the performance of such labor there is a
          degree of faith required, an unusual degree; for if our views be
          correct, it is an important work, an important part of the work
          of the great God, the building of temples by His direct command.
          And this being the case, undoubtedly such work will be met by
          opposition on the part of him who is determined to do everything
          in his power to retard the work of God. By the revelation of the
          Gospel of Jesus Christ, the two forces which have been arrayed
          against each other since the beginning of the earth have been
          brought out unto, it may be said, extraordinary prominence. No
          sooner did the sound go forth that God had again spoken from the
          heavens than an antagonism and an opposition was aroused, such as
          the world for a long period had seemed to know nothing of. The
          power of evil was brought to light, brought into active exercise,
          and the saying of the Savior was exemplified where He said:
          "Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I come not to
          send peace, but a sword. For I am come to set a man at variance
          against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the
          daughter--in-law against her mother-in-law. And a man's foes
          shall be they of his own household." And that has continued from
          that day until the present time, gathering strength, increasing
          in volume and intensity against the work of God, and to those who
          have had no faith, it has seemed as though it would take but a
          short period for the waves of opposition to overwhelm and
          completely submerge this work that our God has founded in the
          earth. But this work being of God, the promises which He made
          concerning it, have not failed. Every word thus far has been
          fulfilled. It seemed like a feeble light in the beginning. It
          seemed as though a small puff of wind would extinguish it; but it
          has continued to enlarge, it has continued to increase, until its
          blaze illumines the horizon, and is watched with interest from
          When we look back at the inception of this work, at the promises
          that were made concerning it, and the labors of those who were
          engaged in founding it, it is most interesting in this day to
          mark and ponder upon that which was then done, and that which was
          then promised unto us. Men wonder why it is that the Latter-day
          Saints believe in this work, why it is that they believe in the
          claims of Joseph Smith as a Prophet of God. Wonder is expressed
          because we entertain faith in the doctrines which form our
          religion; but to me it is most extraordinary that men, possessed
          of the powers of reason, of the faculty of judging between truth
          and error, should with the light there is upon this subject, with
          the extraordinary evidence in favor of the divinity of this work,
          doubt its truth, or that they should hesitate to accept it. It
          has always seemed from my boyhood, since I was old enough to
          comprehend these principles, extraordinary that such should be
          the case. God made promises in the beginning of this work,
          concerning its growth and future, every word of which has been
          fulfilled. The evidences are before the world. When the Prophet
          Joseph first received his manifestations concerning the coming
          forth of this work, he was but a boy of fourteen years of age.
          When he received the plates containing the Book of Mormon, he was
          but twenty-one years of age. When this Church was organized he
          was but twenty-four years of age. The revelations which were then
          given, and which are embodied in the Book of Doctrine and
          Covenants concerning the organization of the Church are such that
          if I were not a Latter-day Saint, and were to read them and know
          as I do know concerning the man through whom these revelations
          came, and through whom this organization was effected, I would be
          compelled to admit that there was a power connected with the
          organization of this Church, that there was a light and an
          intelligence connected with the revelations that were then given,
          that could not have emanated from any other source but God. It
          would be harder for me to reject this idea and this view, than it
          would be to entertain it. The weight and preponderance of
          argument would be more in favor of that view than of any other.
          Let any man read the revelations which Joseph received prior to
          the sixth of April, 1830. Let him read the revelation that was
          given on that day concerning the organization of this Church, and
          if he can do so without being impressed that God is in this, then
          he must indeed be an extraordinary specimen of unbelief, and of
          hardness of heart. A church organized precisely upon the pattern
          of the ancient church, with doctrines precisely similar, varying
          in no single particular from the doctrines of the ancient church,
          and these revealed in extraordinary plainness and power by an
          unlettered youth who had had no chance of education save that
          which the common schools of the country afforded. There has never
          been a day since this Church was organized until this day of our
          Lord, 54 years and upwards, that an Elder of the Church of Jesus
          Christ of Latter-day Saints ever failed to maintain the divine
          authenticity of the doctrines which he had been sent out to
          preach when brought in contact with the most learned men of the
          day, the most skilled theologians. At no period in our history
          has this not been the case. Sending out unlettered men, sending
          out men not taught in the schools of theology, sending out men
          from the fields, the bench and workshops, as the Savior sent out
          His disciples from the lowest walks of life, with the Bible in
          their hands, to preach the Gospel as God has restored it; and
          wherever they have been brought in contact with the clergy of the
          day, in controversy or otherwise, they have always been
          successful in maintaining their doctrines from the Scripture. Let
          any man examine the system that Joseph taught, the organization
          of the Church itself, with all its officers, the ordinances and
          the doctrines, and he will be compelled to admit as was admitted
          to me by a prominent Member of Congress, who was one of our
          bitter enemies, that it is the greatest organization on earth.
          Said this gentleman: "Mr. Cannon, I have examined the
          organization of your Church: I am familiar with the Catholic
          organization; but your organization is the most magnificent of
          anything I have ever had my attention directed to. It is superior
          to every other organization on the earth. Where did you get it?"
          Of course he was not willing to give God any credit for it. I
          give Him all credit, and not Joseph Smith, nor Brigham Young, nor
          any other man who has been identified with this Church of Christ.
          But there are other points to which my mind is led this
          afternoon, in connection with this subject. Joseph Smith received
          the ministration of angels; so he testified. He testified that an
          angel came to him and taught him the doctrines that he afterwards
          taught to the people. If I can find the place I will read a
          "While I was thus in the act of calling upon God, I discovered a
          light appearing in the room, which continued to increase until
          the room was lighter than at noonday, when immediately a
          personage appeared at my bedside, standing in the air, for his
          feet did not touch the floor. He had on a loose robe of most
          exquisite whiteness. It was a whiteness beyond anything earthly I
          had ever seen; nor do I believe that any earthly thing could be
          made to appear so exceedingly white and brilliant; his hands were
          naked, and his arms also, a little above the wrist; so, also,
          were his feet naked, as were his legs a little above the ankles.
          His head and neck were also bare. I could discover that he had no
          other clothing on but this robe, as it was open, so that I could
          see into his bosom.
          "Not only was his robe exceedingly white, but his whole person
          was glorious beyond description, and his countenance truly like
          lightning. The room was exceedingly light, but not so very bright
          as immediately around his person. When I first looked upon him I
          was afraid, but the fear soon left me. He called me by name, and
          said unto me that he was a messenger sent from the presence of
          God to me, and that his name was Moroni. That God had a work for
          me to do, and that my name should be had for good and evil among
          all nations, kindreds, and tongues; or that it should be both
          good and evil spoken of among all people. He said there was a
          book deposited, written upon gold plates, giving an account of
          the former inhabitants of this continent, and the source from
          whence they sprang. He also said that the fullness of the
          everlasting Gospel was contained in it, as delivered by the
          Savior to the ancient inhabitants. Also, that there were two
          stones in silver bows (and these stones, fastened to a
          breast-plate, constituted what is called the Urim and Thummim)
          deposited with the plates, and the possession and use of these
          stones was what constituted Seers in ancient or modern times, and
          that God had prepared them for the purpose of translating the
          I will not read the remainder. Three times during that night, was
          this youth visited by this angelic messenger, and at each
          interview the same things were repeated to him. Numerous passages
          of Scripture were quoted to him, and the doctrines of the Gospel
          of Jesus Christ unfolded to him. The next day he was again
          visited, and again instructed: so that it appeared to be the mind
          of the Lord that he should be deeply impressed, so deeply
          impressed that he would never forget that which was then told to
          him. There is this remarkable statement made, a statement which
          was published in the early days of the Church, long before its
          "That God had a work for me to do, and that my name should be had
          for good and evil among all nations, kindreds and tongues; or
          that it should be both good and evil spoken of among all people."
          Certainly no truer words could be spoken than these; for
          everywhere throughout the civilized world, already has the name
          of Joseph Smith been known for good or evil. No name, probably,
          next to that of the Son of God, our Redeemer, is held in such
          veneration by the thousands and hundreds of thousands who believe
          in the Gospel of the Son of God; next to that name in which we
          approach the Father, the name of Jesus--next to that in the minds
          of all who have received the Gospel stands pre-eminently the name
          of the Prophet Joseph Smith. But with an intensity of hatred
          equal to that of the love borne by the Latter-day Saints to that
          name, is the feeling entertained towards it by those who have
          rejected the Gospel as taught by him. A more complete fulfillment
          of a prediction is not to be found anywhere throughout the earth
          in ancient days, or at any time when God had Prophets upon the
          earth. And so it has been with many other predictions which were
          made at that time. Joseph Smith foresaw with certainty and
          predicted with accuracy the growth of this work; that the Elders
          of this Church should carry the Gospel to the nations of the
          earth; that they would be successful to the extent they have been
          successful and no more. No man was led to expect there would be
          any great conversions of the people by the Elders of this Church.
          Joseph Smith, enlightened by the Spirit of God, made no such
          prediction, and led no one associated with him to anticipate such
          results. On the contrary, he endeavored to the extent of his
          ability to prepare the people for such persecution as had never
          been witnessed upon the face of the earth since the days of the
          Son of God. He never taught the people that their lives would be
          easy and pleasant, that they would have smooth sailing, that they
          would have no interruption, or that they would become popular
          with the world at large. On the contrary, he constantly enjoined
          upon those whom he sent out, to bear it in mind that they would
          have persecution as an inevitable consequence of the proclamation
          of the Gospel. He sent them forth, and they in their turn,
          whenever they went and bore testimony to the restoration of the
          Gospel, warned those who embraced it that they might expect to
          lose everything they had, their good name, their property, their
          friends, and perhaps life itself, before they got through. He
          foresaw plainly that this would be the character of the
          opposition they would have to contend with. God had revealed it
          to him in the beginning. The very first night that this angel
          visited him he told him that his name should be had for good and
          for evil among all people, and he knew full well that it would be
          the case. And when the Elders went forth, they went as gleaners
          of grapes after the vintage was over. They were not told that
          they would find people by hundreds or by thousands, ready to
          espouse the truth. No; but they were told that they would find a
          few here and there, a few honest-hearted people ready to receive
          the truth, a few waiting for the Gospel to come to them; but they
          would not effect any great conversions among the Gentile nations.
          But they were told, as it was predicted in the Book of Mormon,
          that among the Lamanites, as they are termed in that book, that
          is, among the descendants of the house of Israel, as the Indians
          are, their success would be exceedingly great. This has been
          fulfilled to the very letter. 
          Fifty-four years experience in preaching this Gospel among the
          various nations of Christendom has proved to us how correctly the
          man of God foresaw the character of this work. We have gathered
          the people, through the blessing of God, from the various nations
          of the earth; but we have gathered them by small handfuls, as it
          were. There has been no great influx into the Church from these
          nations; but, as I have said, it has been exactly like a gleaning
          of grapes after the vintage is over. And it is a remarkable fact
          that the great bulk of the people who form this Church--that is,
          those who were adults when they became members of this
          Church--were anxiously waiting the arrival of some such message
          as the Elders brought. Our venerated President, who sits on the
          stand, was one of a company of men--himself a Wesleyan Methodist
          preacher--awaiting the time when God would reveal something from
          the heavens, or would send some message that would be more in
          accordance with the ancient Gospel than that which they had. A
          company of them were earnestly praying to God to send more light
          and more power; that power which was manifested in the days of
          the Apostles. At the time when Elder Parley P. Pratt carried the
          Gospel to the city of Toronto he fell in with this company. And
          there sits Brother Wilford Woodruff. I have heard him relate that
          in his early days he has gone out in secret and besought God to
          restore the ancient Gospel, to restore the ancient gifts, to
          restore the ancient power, and he received a promise from God
          before he ever heard of the Latter-day Saints, or ever heard of
          the organization of this Church, that the time would come when
          the true gospel would be restored, and that he should have the
          privilege of being identified with it. And the thousands that
          compose this Church to-day, who joined it when they were adults
          were, the most of them, in a similar condition, a similar state
          of mind. Dissatisfied with existing creeds, members, in many
          instances of existing Churches, but conscious that there was an
          absence of that divine power and of those heavenly gifts which
          characterized the Church in ancient days; dissatisfied with this
          condition of things, they besought God earnestly, fervently, and
          anxiously, to restore His Gospel to the earth, or to send some
          message of life and salvation unto them. They were thus prepared
          for the Gospel when it came, and received it gladly, because
          their hearts were prepared, and it is those few who have been
          gathered from the nations of the earth, with others who are also
          open, because of the honesty of their hearts, to receive the
          truth. Joseph Smith said that this should be the character of
          this work. But it is a remarkable fact--and I wish before leaving
          this point to call your attention to it, that, wherever we have
          gone among those people whom the Book of Mormon tells us are the
          descendants of the house of Israel, we have had no trouble in
          converting them by hundreds, and it may be said by thousands, to
          the truth. They were ready to receive it without any difficulty
          whatever. It seemed as though their hearts had been prepared by
          the God of heaven, and all that has been necessary has been to
          tell them the truth, and they were natural Latter-day Saints,
          natural believers in the Gospel of the Son of God.
          I myself, went as a missionary, as many of you know, to the
          Sandwich Islands, the natives of which I believe to be either a
          branch of the Indians of this continent, or of some other portion
          of the house of Israel. There was no trouble in baptizing them,
          and there is no trouble in baptizing any of the Polynesian races.
          They are ready to receive the Gospel, ready to be baptized; very
          different in this respect from us Gentiles; for there is a spirit
          of unbelief among the Gentile race; there is a hardness of heart;
          there is a want of faith that prevents the blessings of God from
          descending as they did in ancient days upon His covenant people.
          Gentiles are naturally unbelievers. It is difficult to convert
          them, difficult to control them, difficult for them to receive
          the truth in plainness and simplicity.
          Now God has said in this chapter, that He would send Elijah, the
          Prophet, before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the
          Lord. A very singular prediction, a remarkable prediction
          especially when we consider that in this day and age, men do not
          believe in the ministration of angels; and the office of that
          Prophet should be "to 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." Elijah was to come for a
          specific purpose. I do not know how Christendom is going to
          arrange to have this angel come. If he came, I do not suppose
          Christendom would believe he came. But it is on record in our
          sacred books that the Prophet Elijah has come. Permit me, in
          connection with this subject, to read a little upon this point.
          After the completion of the Kirtland Temple, Joseph Smith and
          Oliver Cowdery testified that they beheld the Son of God. It is a
          most remarkable testimony in this age of unbelief; but they
          solemnly testify that they beheld the Son of God, and that after
          beholding Him, they were visited by three glorious personages,
          among whom was the Prophet Elijah. These are the words that they
          have left on record:
          "After this vision had closed, another great and glorious vision
          burst upon us, for Elijah, the prophet, who was taken to heaven,
          without tasting death, stood before us, and said:
          "Behold, the time has fully come, which was spoken of by the
          mouth of Malachi, testifying that he (Elijah) should be sent
          before the great and dreadful day of the Lord come,
          "To turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the
          children to the fathers, lest the whole earth be smitten with a
          "Therefore the keys of this dispensation are committed into your
          hands, and by this ye may know that the great and dreadful day of
          the Lord is near, even at the doors."
          Now, I can imagine how those who are opposed to this work might
          say, "Why, it is a very easy thing for Joseph Smith and Oliver
          Cowdery to make such a statement as that, because it seems to
          correspond with what Malachi has said, and their making the
          statement is merely in anticipation of that which the Bible has
          said would be the case."
          But there is this that is remarkable in connection with this
          statement: the coming of the prophet Elijah was to be attended
          with certain results--it was to turn the heart of the fathers to
          the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers,
          lest the Lord should come and smite the earth with a curse.
          The question arises, after the visitation of Elijah to those two
          men, were the hearts of the fathers turned to the children, and
          the hearts of the children to their fathers? The very fact that
          we are building temples to the Most High God, is evidence of it.
          There never was a greater proof of the truth of any statement
          than that which is furnished in the acts of the Latter-day Saints
          upon this point. The people that comprise this church, before
          joining it, knew nothing about the plan of salvation, except that
          which they had derived from their teachers, who themselves were
          very ignorant; but God in His mercy has restored to us certain
          principles and knowledge concerning the dead. He has informed us
          that during the time the body of Jesus slept in the tomb, that
          the Savior went and preached to the spirits that were in prison.
          I refer now to what Peter says, that while His body lay in the
          tomb, "He went and preached unto the spirits in prison; which
          sometime were disobedient, when once the long-suffering of God
          waited in the days of Noah." He preached the Gospel to them.
          Isaiah says that one of the objects of his mission should be to
          unlock the doors of the prison to them that were bound, and He
          undoubtedly did so on this occasion. I believe the Episcopalian
          catechism admits that Jesus descended into hell. He certainly
          did, and visited those spirits that were in prison. After His
          resurrection, when Mary came forward to salute her Lord, and to
          embrace Him, He said: "Touch me not, for I am not yet ascended to
          my Father; but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend
          unto my Father and your Father; and to my God, and your God."
          During the interval between His death and resurrection He had
          been engaged in preaching to the spirits in prison. He had
          unlocked the prison doors to them that were bound; thus showing
          that though the punishment of the wicked may be eternal
          punishment,--God's punishment being eternal punishment,--the Lord
          does not subject His fallen creatures to suffer that punishment
          throughout the endless ages of eternity, as has been falsely
          taught by so-called Christian ministers. There comes a day of
          release. Jesus preached redemption to those spirits who were
          disobedient in the days of Noah. They had lain in torment from
          the days of Noah--upward of 2,000 years--until the Son of Man
          turned the keys of their prison-house, and preached to them the
          Gospel of repentance, that they might repent of their sins,
          though in the spirit, and be judged, as Peter says, according to
          men in the flesh. God has revealed this doctrine to the
          Latter-day Saints, and it is for the purpose of carrying it out
          that we build these temples, that you may go in and officiate
          vicariously for those who have not had that privilege in the
          It has been a question that has agitated many minds, when they
          have been told that the name of Jesus is the only name given
          under heaven whereby man can be saved--"What, then, has become of
          the millions of Pagans who never heard the sound of the name of
          Jesus?" They are dying by thousands to-day. Nations are perishing
          who have never heard the name of the Son of God. This question
          has been asked of us many times when we have been preaching the
          Gospel of salvation that God has restored. People have said: "Is
          it possible that those who do not believe your doctrine will be
          damned? If so, what is to become of our ancestors? I had
          Christian parents who loved the Lord, and you say that those who
          are not baptized according to your method and by one having
          authority, cannot enter into the Kingdom of Heaven." Many people
          have been tempted to reject the testimony of the servants of God,
          because of this, forgetting that Christendom has taught a similar
          doctrine respecting the heathen nations. The Christian world have
          believed that all these nations would be sent to a place of
          endless torment, that they go to hell and can never be redeemed.
          Most abhorrent doctrine! so inconceivably cruel that it is enough
          to make men reject God and everything connected with Him, if it
          is supposed that He could be the author of such teaching as this;
          as though God would consign men to hell for ignorance--conceal
          from them the Gospel, and then damn them through all eternity,
          because they had not known that which might have been revealed to
          them. No, there is no such doctrine in the Book. There is no such
          doctrine in the Gospel of salvation. Those heathen nations, like
          our ancestors, who died in ignorance of the Gospel of Christ,
          will yet hear the voice of salvation. Jesus and those associated
          with Him will minister to them; for we are all the sons and
          daughters of God. What shall we do throughout the ages yet to
          come, the eternities lying before us? Shall there be no salvation
          extended to the ignorant, and to the erring, and to those who
          would have done better could they have known the plan of life and
          salvation? Why, certainly. The little space of time we live here
          upon the hearth, important as it is to us, compared with the
          eternities of our God, is only like one grain of sand out of the
          immensities of grains that are upon the sea shore. Our God is
          endless and eternal. His Gospel is endless and eternal, and as
          long as there is a soul to be saved, He, and Jesus, who died for
          all, and all associated with them who have the same Priesthood,
          will labor anxiously until every soul will be brought back who
          can be brought back, who has not committed the unpardonable sin
          by sinning against light and knowledge, as Judas did in betraying
          the Lord of life and glory; every souls other than these will be
          felt after throughout the eternities of our God. Hell itself will
          be sought; every crevice of it, every part of it will be
          penetrated by Jesus, and by the Saints of God, in search of the
          souls of the children of men, until from every crevice and from
          every recess in the regions of the damned they will be brought
          forth to light and glory, if they will obey the glorious Gospel
          of the Son of God, if they will bow in submission to the sceptre
          of King Immanuel. That is all they have to do--to repent of their
          sins, repent of them whether in this life or in the life to come,
          and put them away far from them. This is the Gospel of glad
          tidings. It is not a Gospel that consigns the majority of the
          human family to an endless condition of torment. That is not the
          Gospel of Christ.
          Now, as I have said, the Lord promised that Elijah should come
          before the great and dreadful day. He has sent him, and the
          hearts of the Latter-day Saints have been turned to their fathers
          who have died in ignorance of the Gospel of the Son of God, and
          we have the warrant of Scripture to believe that the hearts of
          the fathers in the eternal worlds, those who have lived upon the
          earth, are turned to their children who now live here, and who
          can officiate vicariously for them, and answer the purpose that
          God has designed in attending to those ordinances which they
          themselves have not the power to attend to. Certainly this has
          been fulfilled. It is not the testimony of Joseph Smith and
          Oliver Cowdery alone; but this whole people. These Latter-day
          Saints throughout all these mountains, can bear a testimony that
          this spirit has rested upon them, and their hearts have been
          turned to their fathers, and the hearts of their fathers have
          without doubt been turned to them. And it is a strange fact
          connected with the Gospel, that contemporaneously with the
          revelation of the doctrine to Joseph Smith a spirit seemed to
          take possession of the people in Eastern lands to hunt up their
          genealogies, and Genealogical Societies have been formed in many
          places for what purpose no one can exactly tell, unless it be a
          Latter-day Saint. Genealogies have been hunted up with wonderful
          industry, saving us a great amount of labor in these matters. It
          was a strange spirit that took hold of the American people,
          especially the people of New England, about that time. It was a
          common thing in the Western States when I was a boy, for men not
          to know the names of their grandfathers; and I have known many
          intelligent men who could not tell the names of their uncles and
          aunts, their fathers, and mothers, brothers and sisters. This
          arose from the fact that in moving West, emigrants had left their
          kindred behind, and had not kept up in their children's minds the
          recollection of their names. But within the last 40 years a
          different spirit has taken possession of the people, and many are
          industriously engaged in searching out the names of their
          ancestors. Many volumes have been published in connection with
          this subject, and in the Historian's Office are to be found many
          books containing the genealogies of the families of many whose
          members are in this Territory. Such books have been invaluable to
          us, in carrying out this work. Thus, these societies and people
          have unwittingly helped to fulfill the words of the Lord, through
          Malachi, and to strengthen the evidence that Joseph Smith was
          indeed an inspired Prophet of God. In the persecution that this
          Church has received; in being driven from their homes: in
          everything that is now being done by the Congress of the United
          States against the Latter-day Saints, and in this genealogical
          work that I have just alluded to, men outside of this Church have
          contributed to prove that Joseph Smith was indeed and inspired
          Prophet of God; for there has been no action taken by Congress,
          nothing has been done to us by mobs, or by any combination, that
          has not been predicted by Joseph Smith the Prophet, and we have
          the record of it, and know that it is true. We know whereof we
          speak. Joseph Smith, years and years before the breaking out of
          the war in South Carolina, predicted that such a war should take
          place, and he designated the spot where it should commence. And
          the wicked by their own acts proved to the world, to God, and to
          angels, that Joseph Smith was an inspired Prophet of God, and
          that He foretold that which should take place.
          God bless you, in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 / John
          Taylor, May 18th, 1884
                             John Taylor, May 18th, 1884
            Delivered at the time of the Dedication of the Temple, in the
               Logan, Cache County, Sunday Afternoon, May 18th, 1884.
                              Reported by John Irvine.
                                    THINGS KNOWN
          Since we assembled in this place we have had a very interesting
          time. It has been our desire that all who could be properly
          recommended by their Bishops should have an opportunity to visit
          the Temple, whether it be the residents of this Stake, and the
          Stakes of this Temple district, or the residents of other Stakes,
          because we have felt that it is due to those who have assisted so
          liberally in building the Temple in this place, that they should
          have a full and fair opportunity of seeing it. For that purpose
          we have already had two dedication services, and we intend to
          have another in the Temple, commencing at half-past ten o'clock
          to-morrow morning, tickets for which can be obtained from
          President Geo. Q. Cannon, at the close of this meeting.
          We are living in a very important day and age of the world, in a
          time which is pregnant with greater events than any other period
          that we know of, or any other dispensation that has existed upon
          the earth. It is called "the dispensation of the fullness of
          times," when God "will gather together in one all things in
          Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth;" for
          the heavens, the Gods in the eternal worlds, the Holy Priesthood
          that have existed upon the earth, the living that live upon the
          face of the earth, and the dead that have departed this life, are
          all interested in the work in which we are engaged. Consequently,
          it is of the greatest importance that everything we do, that ever
          ordinance we administer, that every principle we believe in,
          should be strictly in accordance with the mind and word, the will
          and law of God.
          I have heard some remarks in the Temple pertaining to these
          matters, and also here, and it has been thought, as has been
          expressed by some, that we ought to look for some peculiar
          manifestations. The question is, What do we want to see? Some
          peculiar power, some remarkable manifestations? All these things
          are very proper in their place; all these things we have a right
          to look for; but we must only look for such manifestations as are
          requisite for our circumstances, and as God shall see fit to
          impart them. Certain manifestations have already occurred. When
          our Heavenly Father appeared unto Joseph Smith, the Prophet, He
          pointed to the Savior who was with him, (and who, it is said, is
          the brightness of the Father's glory and the express image of His
          person) and said: "This is my beloved Son, hear Him." So that
          there was an evidence manifested through His servant to the
          world, that God lived, that the Redeemer, who was crucified and
          put to death to atone for the sins of the world, also lived, and
          that there was a message which had to be communicated to the
          human family, and that the Son was the personage through which it
          should be communicated. The key thus being turned, authority
          given by the highest source in the heavens in relation to the
          purposes of God on the earth, the Holy Priesthood began to be
          developed. Why? Because there was no Priesthood on the earth;
          there was nobody who was authorized to operate and officiate in
          the name of the Lord, therefore John the Baptist, came as the
          representative of the Aaronic Priesthood, having held the keys
          thereof in his day; and he placed his hands upon the heads of
          Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery, and said: "Upon you, my fellow
          servants, in the name of Messiah, I confer the Priesthood of
          Aaron, which holds the keys of the ministering of angels, and of
          the gospel of repentance, and of baptism by immersion for the
          remission of sins; and this shall never be taken again from the
          earth, until the sons of Levi do offer again an offering unto the
          Lord in righteousness." John the Baptist having thus come and
          imparted the Aaronic Priesthood, which like the Melchizedek
          Priesthood is an eternal Priesthood--it being already conferred
          it is not now necessary that John the Baptist should return for
          the accomplishment of that purpose. He had delivered his
          testimony, he had turned the key, he had introduced the power and
          authority to administer in that Priesthood, so that those upon
          whom it was conferred were able to perform the several duties
          associated therewith.
          Then Peter, James and John appeared and conferred upon Joseph
          Smith and Oliver Cowdery the Melchizedek Priesthood, which, as
          you all know, differs from that of the Aaronic. The Melchizedek
          Priesthood, which, as you all know, differs from that of the
          Aaronic. The Melchizedek Priesthood, according to the Scriptures,
          is after the order of the Son of God, and after the power of an
          endless life. It places men in communication with God our
          Heavenly Father, whereby through its influence, ordinance, powers
          and blessings, they can approach the presence of God, the Eternal
          Father, and come, as it was said by one of old, "To the general
          assembly and church of the first born, which are written in
          heaven, and to God, the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just
          men made perfect, and to Jesus the Mediator of the new covenant,
          and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than
          that of Abel." It is that Priesthood through the Gospel, that
          brings life and immortality to light, that places man in a
          position whereby he can obtain, through faithfulness and
          adherence to the laws of God, all the rich blessings associated
          with the eternal worlds, of which we are allowed to partake while
          we dwell here upon the earth, or hereafter in the heavens. It is
          not necessary that Peter, James and John should come again to do
          the thing that is already done. The Priesthood has been restored,
          with which is connected all the blessings that ever were
          associated with any people upon the face of the earth; and if we
          know to-day so little in regard to the things of God and the
          principles associated with eternity, with the heavens and with
          the angels, it is because we have not improved our privileges as
          we might, nor lived up to those principles which God has revealed
          unto us, and because we are not yet prepared for further
          Jesus in His day, said to His disciples: "Peace I leave with you,
          my peace I give unto you, not as the world giveth, give I unto
          you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. *
          * * * * Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God,
          believe also in me. In my Father's house are many mansions: if it
          were not so I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for
          you. I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I
          am, there ye may be also." What did He mean? Just what he said,
          precisely. If He went away He would send them another Comforter,
          the Spirit of truth, which should abide with them forever, and
          teach them all things, and bring all things pertaining to the
          past to their remembrance; the Comforter was also to lead them
          into all truth, and show them things to come.
          This same Comforter has been given, in connection with the Gospel
          in these days, for our enlightenment, for our instruction, for
          our guidance, that we may have a knowledge of things that are
          past, of the dealings of God with the human family, of the
          principles of truth that have been developed in the different
          ages, of the position of the world and its relationship to God in
          those different ages, of its position in years that are past and
          gone, and of its present status. It is also given for our
          enlightenment, that we may be enabled to conduct all things
          according to the mind and will of God, and in accordance with His
          eternal laws and those principles which exist in the heavens, and
          which have been provided by God for the salvation and exaltation
          of a fallen world; also for the manifestation of principles which
          have been and will be developed in the interest of an, not only
          pertaining to this world, but also to that which is to come;
          through which medium the Lord will make known His plans and
          designs to His Priesthood and His people in His own due time.
          After these things had been introduced, the people in Kirtland,
          Ohio, by the command of God, through Joseph Smith, the Prophet,
          some 49 years ago, (without being particular as to dates)
          commenced to build a house unto the Lord wherein certain
          preliminary ordinances were introduced, and that house was built
          under very trying circumstances to the Saints, but they
          accomplished it. Most of the Saints then devoted all the time
          they could possibly spare for the accomplishment of that object;
          it was not in little donations, but they had to exert their
          undivided energies and means to its accomplishment. When they had
          finished it, it was dedicated to the Lord, God accepted their
          sacrifice, and Jesus appeared in that Temple, of which appearance
          you will find a description in the Book of Doctrine and
          Covenants. (Section 110). Before this they had had the Aaronic
          and the Melchizedek Priesthoods presented to them, and Moroni,
          and other personages had appeared unto Joseph Smith. When this
          Temple was erected for preparatory ordinances,--for it was not
          like the Temples we now have, nor like the Temple that was in
          Nauvoo, the Lord appeared, and then Moses appeared. They had
          already the keys of the Aaronic Priesthood, and of the
          Melchizedek; and as Moses had held the keys and authority of the
          gathering of the children of Israel, from the land of Egypt, in a
          former dispensation, so he was now sent to confer these said keys
          upon Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery. It is said, that after this
          vision closed--that is the vision of the Savior manifested to
          Joseph and Oliver in the Kirtland Temple--that:
          "The heavens were again opened unto us, and Moses appeared before
          us, and committed unto us the keys of the gathering of Israel
          from the four parts of the earth, and the leading of the ten
          tribes from the land of the north."
          Here then were the keys committed associated with the gathering.
          Why is it that you are here to-day? and what brought you here?
          Because the keys of the gathering of Israel from the four
          quarters of the earth have been committed to Joseph Smith, and he
          has conferred those keys upon others that the gathering of Israel
          may be accomplished, and in due time the same thing will be
          performed to the tribes in the land of the north. It is on this
          account, and through the unlocking of this principle, and through
          those means, that you are brought together as you are to-day. I
          have heretofore mentioned a circumstance, and I will mention it
          again here, as there are so many present to show you how those
          things operate. What I refer to is this: Soon after we were
          driven from Missouri, the Twelve were sent to England. There was
          no place then for the Saints to gather to; the Prophet therefore
          said to the Twelve: "When you go to England, until you get
          further information, do not say anything about the gathering."
          Consequently we did not; but we could not keep the spirit of it
          from the people. Why? Because we had the Gospel, and the Gospel
          brings life and immortality to light, and those that receive the
          Gospel receive the Holy Ghost, and a knowledge of the things
          associated with the Gospel. And hence I remember a sister coming
          to me in Liverpool, England, where I had raised up a church, and
          says she, "Brother Taylor, I had a very remarkable dream or
          vision, I don't know which, and it was something like this: I
          thought that the Saints were gathered together on the Pier
          Head--[that is the place where the vessels then used to sail
          from], and there was a ship about to sail. The people said they
          were going to Zion, and they were singing what they called the
          songs of Zion, and rejoicing exceedingly; you were among them,
          and you were going also. Now I want to know if you can tell me
          what it means." "Yes," said I, I "know what it means, and I will
          tell you when the time comes"--just the same as I have to say to
          day that there are many things that I know of which I can only
          tell you when the time comes.
          By and by, Joseph Smith sent word that the Saints were to gather
          to Nauvoo; that they had a gathering place there, and the Saints
          were to be directed to that land. I then went and told this
          sister the interpretation of her dream or vision. I mention this
          to show that you cannot prevent these manifestations: they are
          associated with the Gospel. If men and women receive the Spirit
          of God and the gift of the Holy Ghost, it reveals those things
          unto them. It was said by one of old, that through its influence
          "your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men
          shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams;" and
          although Joseph had told us not to say anything about the
          gathering, yet he could not prevent the Lord from revealing it to
          the people. He did reveal it, and a great many, as well as the
          sister referred to, had a knowledge of it.
          That is the principle which brought you here. If that key had not
          been turned; if Moses had not come to introduce it, you would not
          have been here, and Joseph Smith would not have known anything
          about it nor anybody else until God revealed it in His own
          appointed way.
          But as I stated before, the Father said, "This is my beloved Son,
          hear Him." He manipulates the Priesthood in the heavens and on
          the earth. He manages the affairs associated with the redemption
          of the human family. "Hear Him;" and when He was prepared to send
          forth these messengers, as we send forth messengers to accomplish
          certain purposes--when He saw that the time had come, He said,
          "Go Moses, and attend to this matter. They have built a Temple;
          from now they will begin to gather the Saints, and it is
          necessary that they should have proper instructions and
          information relating to these matters." And Moses came.
          Now, that was one thing. Then we read that:
          "After this Elias appeared, and committed the dispensation of the
          Gospel of Abraham, saying, that in us, and our seed, all
          generations after us should be blessed."
          That was the promise made to Abraham some 3,500 years ago. It was
          not a promise made to Abraham alone, but through him to others.
          He and his seed were to be the instrumentality, the media through
          which mankind should be blessed; they were to be the special
          instruments in the hands of God for the accomplishment of these
          purposes. Hence the Priesthood began to be organized--the
          Bishopric and all pertaining to the Aaronic Priesthood including
          Priests, Teachers and Deacons; and associated with the
          Melchizedek Priesthood, the First Presidency, the Twelve, the
          High Council, High Priests, Seventies and Elders, and all those
          occupying their own particular place; and hence in that small
          Temple, as we should now call it, that was erected in Kirtland,
          they had the same organization of the Priesthood, and the same
          arrangements of the stands for the seating of the Priesthood as
          we have here. Why? Because the Priesthood had been introduced
          after the order of Aaron, and after the order of Melchizedek,
          which is after the order of the Son of God, and after the power
          of an endless life, and that officiates and operates in time and
          in eternity, and by which Priesthood and through which authority
          the worlds were framed by the power of God. Things as they
          existed in the heavens again began to be introduced upon the
          earth. Hence, that His servants might be properly instructed and
          comprehend correctly the great principles which He designed to
          unfold to the human family, He sent those several messengers
          holding those various keys that they might unlock the doors and
          place His servants in communication with the heavenly Priesthood
          in the eternal worlds.
          Do you want anything more than this, you Latter-day Saints? This
          was the position in which they were placed, and the position in
          which we find ourselves to-day.
          Then we are told that another personage appeared, as stated:
          "After this vision had closed, another great and glorious vision
          burst upon us, for Elijah, the prophet, who was taken to heaven
          without tasting death, stood before us and said--
          "Behold the time has fully come which was spoken of by the mouth
          of Malachi, testifying that he (Elijah) should be sent before the
          great and dreadful day of the Lord came.
          "To turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the
          children to the fathers, lest, the whole earth be smitten with a
          "Therefore the keys of this dispensation are committed into your
          hands, and by this ye may know that the great and dreadful day of
          the Lord is near, even at the doors."
          What means this? What means this Temple that you have built here
          on the hill? Why have you built it? Why have you expressed such
          anxiety in the erection of that Temple? Why have such crowds of
          our brethren and sisters from distant places come here to the
          dedication of this Temple? Why is it? It is because those keys
          were turned of which I have just read in your hearing.
          "Behold the time has fully come * * * to turn the hearts of the
          fathers to the children, and the children to the fathers, lest
          the whole earth be smitten with a curse.
          "Therefore the keys of this dispensation are committed into your
          hands, and by this ye may know that the great and dreadful day of
          the Lord is near, even at the doors."
          What does this mean? It means that there was a great and
          comprehensive plan designed by the Almighty in his economy
          connected with the salvation of the human family who are His
          children; for He is the God and the father of the spirits of all
          flesh. It means that He is interested in their welfare, in their
          prosperity, in their happiness, and in all that pertains to their
          exaltation in time and throughout the eternities that are to
          come. Being thus interested, and so little of the Gospel having
          been revealed in the different ages, and so much of the power of
          darkness and iniquity having prevailed among men, it was
          necessary that something should be done for the dead as well as
          the living. God is interested in the dead as well as the living.
          Adam, who is the Ancient of Days and the father of the human
          family; Seth, Enos, Enoch, Mahalaleel, Methuselah, Noah, and all
          the prominent leading men of God, as well as Abraham, Isaac,
          Jacob, Moses, the Prophets, Jesus and His Apostles, together with
          the Prophets and Apostles who lived on this continent, and who
          stood at the various times or epochs as the representatives of
          the nations, and as thousands of these peoples have passed away
          having held and now holding the Priesthood; all these ancient
          fathers feel interested in this great work, and their hearts are
          turned toward the children, being interested in their welfare,
          happiness and exaltation; and their children who now have
          received the Gospel have their hearts, through this
          instrumentality, and the keys and principles which were
          introduced by Elijah, turned towards the fathers through the
          inspiration of the same Gospel, which Gospel as spoken of in the
          Scriptures, is an everlasting Gospel, being associated with the
          everlasting covenant, which principle wherever it has existed,
          brought life and immortality to light.
          When Jesus came, He came to do a work in many particulars similar
          to that in which we are engaged, and when He got through with His
          work here, He stood as the Savior of the world, and of the human
          family. He came to preach the Gospel to the poor, to open the
          prison doors to those that were imprisoned, to set at liberty,
          and to proclaim the acceptable hour of the Lord, etc. This was a
          work connected with the people who lived at the time of the
          flood, and were destroyed and kept in prison until the Lord
          should see proper to extend manifestations of His mercy to them.
          Hence, as we read, "Christ hath once suffered for sins, the just
          for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death
          in the flesh, but quickened by the spirit; by which also he went
          and preached to the spirits in prison; which sometime were
          disobedient when once the long suffering of God waited in the
          days of Noah." He having finished His work upon earth for the
          living, went and performed a work for the dead; as we are
          informed, "He went and preached to spirits in prison, that had
          sometime been disobedient in the days of Noah."
          It is reserved for us to do a work for those who have passed
          away, who have not obeyed or had the Gospel in their lifetime. We
          are here to do a work connected with the redemption of the dead.
          When the Temple was commanded to be built in Nauvoo, after the
          Temple had been built in Kirtland, and after so many keys had
          been turned, and after so many manifestations, visions and
          ministrations had been had, yet it was said then that there was
          not a place upon the earth in which to perform the ordinance of
          baptism for the dead, and Joseph was commanded to build a house
          for that purpose. But who knew anything about these things until
          God revealed them? Nobody. Men talk and boast of their
          intelligence and their knowledge--why, there is not a man
          breathing on the earth, outside of this Church, who has any
          knowledge of those things to which I have referred, and nobody in
          this Church either, only as God has revealed it. We are all of us
          indebted to the revelations of God, through the medium of the
          Holy Priesthood, for these things. Joseph Smith before his death,
          was much exercised about the completion of the Temple in Nauvoo,
          and the administering of ordinances therein. In his anxiety and
          for fear he should not live to see the Temple completed, he
          prepared a place over what was known as the brick-store--which
          many of you who lived in Nauvoo will recollect--where to a chosen
          few he administered those ordinances that we now have to-day
          associated with endowments, so that if anything should happen to
          him--which he evidently contemplated--he would feel that he had
          then fulfilled his mission, that he had conferred upon others all
          the keys given to him by the manifestations of the power of God.
          At first these things were only partially made known to him, and
          as they were partially developed he called upon the Twelve that
          were then living--many of you grey-headed people will remember
          it--to commence and be baptized for the dead, and they were
          baptized in the Mississippi River. Immediately after these
          baptisms, the Prophet had a revelation which more clearly
          developed the order in relation to such baptisms. According to
          that revelation it appeared that, notwithstanding all the vision,
          revelations, keys, etc., that had heretofore been given, there
          was not a place, not even in the Kirtland Temple, wherein those
          things could be carried out, and hence a font, such as we have in
          this Temple, was built in the temple at Nauvoo, and it was there,
          under proper circumstances and proper administration, and
          according to the principles that he had laid down, that those
          ordinances were administered then, and are administered now.
          I now come to another subject that opens a wide and expansive
          field, broad as the world in which we live, and expansive as the
          universe, and which affects all the inhabitants of the earth
          living or dead. Why is it that there is such a feeling, as I have
          said, concerning your Temple and other Temples? It is because
          those keys have been turned, and you have received, like the
          woman I spake of, a knowledge of the gathering dispensation. You
          have laid out a great amount of means, done a large amount of
          labor, and you have built a house that is creditable to you, and
          which God will sanction and approve and does sanction and
          approve. You have made it very nice, pleasant, and beautiful. We
          ought to build Temples to the Lord, for we are His offspring and
          He is our Father, and He has revealed unto us those things and
          implanted those principles in our bosoms. They are developed
          within us, and this Temple is a proof of it, just the same as we
          are a living proof of the gathering dispensation. We have
          received the gift of the Holy Ghost, and a knowledge, so far as
          we have progressed, of the things of God. You have been baptized,
          you have had hands laid upon you for the reception of the Holy
          Ghost, and you that have lived your religion have received this
          Holy Ghost, and I want, as an evidence before God and this
          people--I want to see how many of you can bear testimony to that.
          All who can, hold up their right hands. [A perfect forest of
          hands was held up.] We know, by the power of the Holy Ghost, and
          by obedience to His law, so far as we have obeyed it, that God
          lives. But then, we have been poor, weak, erring creatures,
          surrounded by infirmities. Yet God has conferred upon us great,
          inestimable and eternal treasures, even the gift of eternal
          lives, and upon many of us are conferred these promises of
          thrones, principalities, powers and dominion in the eternal
          worlds. God has conferred those rich and precious treasures upon
          us, but we have them in earthen vessels. We have to wrestle
          against flesh and blood, against the powers of darkness, the
          Adversary, who rules in the hearts of the children of
          disobedience, and leads them captive at his will, and against the
          power of wickedness in high places. We have not all of us learned
          to obey those principles that God has revealed. We have not all
          of us learned to say in our hearts, "Thy will be done on earth as
          it is done in heaven." We have not all of us learned to submit
          our will to the law and word of God, yet God is introducing
          Temples and ordinances and blessings, and light, revelations and
          intelligence, to lift us up, to exalt us, that we may be a city
          set upon a hill that cannot be hid; that we may progress from
          intelligence to intelligence, from knowledge to knowledge, until
          we shall see as we are seen and know as we are known.
          We are living, as I have said, in an important day and age of the
          world. We have gathered to this land because God has decreed it.
          He has reserved us for the latter days, that we may perform that
          work which He decreed from before the foundation of the world. If
          there have been any blessings enjoyed by men in former
          dispensations of the world, they will also be given to you, ye
          Latter-day Saints, if you will live your religion and be obedient
          to the laws of God. There is nothing hidden but what shall be
          revealed, says the Lord. He is prepared to unfold all things; all
          things pertaining to the heavens and the earth, all things
          pertaining to the peoples who have existed, who now exist or will
          exist, that we may be instructed and taught in every principle of
          intelligence associated with the world in which we live, or with
          the Gods in the eternal worlds.
          Having said so much on some of these subjects, let me now talk a
          little upon some other things.
          We have finished our Temple. What is it for? Not a building to
          look at; not a house to brag about; for before we get through we
          shall have built some Temples so much better, that you will not
          feel to boast about this Temple. The Temple that the people built
          in Kirtland, was only a small building compared with this one,
          and they were a very small and poor people who built it, yet it
          was built in accordance with the commands of God. In Nauvoo,
          also, the people were very poor. They had just been driven from
          the land of Missouri, yet they were commanded of God to build it.
          What was obtained in these Temples? In the Kirtland Temple Jesus
          appeared, and Moses, Elias and Elijah appeared also, and all
          these things that I have read to you and spoken about, transpired
          on that occasion. Communication was opened between the heavens
          and the earth, between the Priesthood in the heavens and the
          Priesthood on the earth, and the Keys of that Priesthood imparted
          to Joseph and others on the earth. It was left to those in this
          world to keep open those communications, to see that the road was
          clear, and that there was no barrier interposed between earth and
          the heavens, and to lead forward and progress in other principles
          yet to be developed; we operating, in our part here in their
          behalf, and in behalf of their children who are our fathers;
          while they, in their exalted position, are operating for them and
          us in the heavens; thus forming a connecting link between the
          Priesthood on the earth and the Priesthood in the heavens.
          We have now finished this Temple, and some people inquire, what
          is it for? For many things: that our sealings and ordinances may
          be performed in a manner that will be acceptable before God and
          the holy angels; that whatsoever is bound on the earth according
          to the laws of the eternal Priesthood shall be bound in the
          heavens; that there may be a connecting link between the living
          and the dead, between those who have lived, all those ancient
          fathers of which I have spoken who are interested in the welfare
          of their posterity; that there may be a royal Priesthood, a holy
          people, a pure people, a virtuous people on the earth to
          officiate and operate in the interests of the living and the
          dead; not looking so much after themselves, but after God, after
          the work of God, and after the accomplishment of those things
          which God has designed to be carried out in "the dispensation of
          the fullness of times" when all things are to be united in one,
          and that they may be prepared to operate with the Priesthood in
          the heavens in the redemption of the inhabitants of this world
          form the days of Adam unto the present time. It is also intended
          to introduce the higher branches of education--literary,
          scientific, linguistic, philosophical and theological; for we are
          told to obtain a knowledge of laws, languages, governments,
          justice, equity, rule, authority, dominion, and all those great
          cosmopolitan principles exhibited in the laws of nature and among
          the peoples, by the wisdom, prescience, power and intelligence of
          "nature's God." That we may thus be acquainted with earthly and
          heavenly things, in accordance with everlasting laws that have
          existed in the heavens and on the earth from the beginning; and
          that all those great and eternal principles by which the worlds
          are governed may be comprehended by us.
          This is a great work. Well might it be said to Joseph Smith, "You
          are laying the foundation of a great work"--so vast that very few
          can begin to comprehend it. We read sometimes about the
          millennium. But what do we know about it? It is a time when this
          work will be going on, and Temples, thousands of them, will be
          reared for the accomplishment of the objects designed, in which
          communications from the heavens will be received in regard to our
          labors, how we may perform them, and for whom. This is the work
          devolving upon us. We have to build up here a Zion unto God. Who
          are Zion? The pure in heart, and the pure in life. And be it
          remembered that it is not every one that saith, "Lord, Lord,"
          that shall enter the Kingdom of heaven, but it is he that doeth
          the will of the Father who is in heaven. We must be faithful to
          our calling, for there is a great work for all of us to perform.
          Some men who have been ordained to the Priesthood have remarked
          that they have nothing to do. I have heard some foolish remarks
          of that kind. They will find plenty to do before they get
          through. They need not be troubled on that score. There will be
          plenty for them to do if they are only prepared to do it. There
          is a great work to perform in preaching the Gospel to the nations
          of the earth. Then as we build our Temples we shall want a great
          many people to administer in them, and I have seen some people
          quite pleased at the idea. Some Elders, Seventies, and High
          Priests have said--"What can I do? I am getting old and grey
          headed. Still I would like to do something." We shall require
          quite a number to administer in the Temples as we get them built.
          I am informed there are over forty persons employed in the Temple
          in St. George, about the same number, I presume, will be required
          in the Temple here, and then forty in the one at Manti, forty or
          more in the one at Salt Lake, and then forty in each of the
          others we are going to build. Hence, we shall find places for
          some of you folks after a while. You need not be concerned about
          having nothing to do. We will find plenty for the Seventies to
          do. You need not think there are any too many of them. The
          nations of the earth have yet to be preached to. The work is not
          all through. It is hardly begun. We are just getting ready for
          the labor, and so you may prepare yourselves, you Seventies, you
          High Priests, and you Elders, for missions to the nations of the
          earth. [Here President Taylor inquired of Bishop Preston how they
          were progressing with the missionary farms, and was answered that
          they were progressing satisfactorily. We don't want the aged and
          infirm to go out to the world. For that labor it requires strong,
          able-bodied men, men that are able to cope with the world, the
          flesh and the devil, as they say. We want men who are full of
          vigor, life and vitality. We want men to cleave unto God, and
          seek for more of His Spirit, that they may go to the nations of
          the earth to proclaim the glad tidings of salvation to a fallen
          world. That is what we are gathered together for, that we may be
          instructed in the laws of life, and then go and teach these laws
          to others. Our Elders go out to preach the Gospel without purse
          or scrip, and when they return we help them back. But we should
          see when they are gone that their families are taken care of, and
          everything made pleasant and comfortable for them. This is quite
          a little thing that some of you can turn your hands to. You can
          assist on the missionary farms, and in this way help to take care
          of the families of those who are absent on missions. This is a
          principle we want to see extended all over the land of Zion. How
          are you going to be paid for this? You will just get the same pay
          which I used to have when I went out to preach; you will have
          just the same source to go to, only you will have a little more
          time, I expect, than some of us had. We used to go without purse
          or scrip. We went along trusting in God. We are now in a
          different position, perhaps, and can put a few dollars into the
          bag to help us along; but I will tell you when I was away I would
          rather trust in the living God than in any other power on earth,
          for I learned that I could go to God and He always received me.
          He always supplied my wants. I always had plenty to eat, drink
          and wear, and could ride on steamboats or railroads, or anywhere
          I thought proper: God always opened my way, and so He will that
          of every man who will put his trust in Him. I would rather have
          God for my friend than all other influences and powers outside;
          for in God we live, in God we move, and from God we derive our
          being and our existence.
          Then what about the payment of those men who are to be employed
          in Temples? There are three or four men that will have to be
          provided for, and others will have to take care of themselves,
          find their own bread and dinner, and think it a privilege to work
          for God, for the interests of His Kingdom, and to act as saviors
          upon Mount Zion. Supposing there are forty required to labor in
          this Temple. Many of you are pretty well off. You have got fat,
          and have almost kicked, some of you (laughter). Some of you have
          got more means than you know what to do with, and it is a bother
          to you. We will have to fix upon the number of men and women--for
          the sisters will be required as well as the brethren--that will
          be needed. These can go along, leaving their farms and their
          merchandizing, or whatever they may have in hand, and go into the
          Temple of the Lord, on a mission for six months, or twelve
          months, or two or three years as the case may be, the same as
          others who go out into the world. If I to-day were not engaged as
          I am I should say, "Won't you be kind enough to give me and one
          of my wives, or more, as the case might be, and opportunity to
          officiate in the Temple?" and I should feel it an honor to be
          privileged to work in the house of God. Would you want pay for
          it? No, I would bring my own bread and dinner, and I have no
          doubt there are many of you who would like to do the same. I
          guess we could pick out the forty people thus required right in
          this house to-day, without any trouble. All you who are in favor
          of carrying out this idea hold up your right hands. (All hands
          went up.) I knew there were more than forty right here
          (laughter). As to the three or four whose whole time will be
          engaged in this labor, these will have to be provided for. In
          this way we shall become saviors upon Mount Zion. It is written
          in the Scriptures, that "Saviors shall come up on Mount Zion * *
          and the kingdom shall be the Lord's." Now, a man is not a savior,
          nor a woman either, unless they save somebody. Well, we want men
          and women who are ready to officiate in this place. And when you
          get there, surrounded by the heavenly influence of the house of
          God, the gift of the Holy Ghost will rest upon you, which will
          bring joy and consolation to your hearts. When you have labored
          there for a while, you will desire to labor there again. You will
          carry this heavenly influence among your friends and throughout
          your neighborhood, and this we want to extend throughout all the
          land of Zion. We shall have, I presume, regular Temple
          organizations, Something of this kind may be organized among the
          High Priests who will look after the Temple districts. In this
          way we will find something for the High Priests to do. Some of
          them have been very much afraid that there would be nothing for
          them to do.
          And thus we will go on, and God will assist us in the work in
          which we are engaged. He will yet make us the richest of all
          people. He will pour wealth into our laps, inasmuch as we keep
          His commandments. And what else is said? "Sons of strangers shall
          build up thy walls, and their kings shall minister unto thee."
          Men shall call you the ministers of our God. And we want to
          minister for God in time and throughout the eternities that are
          to come. We have started in, and we will try by the help of God
          and the light of His Holy Spirit, and the revelations that he
          will give to us from time to time--we will try and operate and
          co-operate with the Priesthood in the eternal worlds, either on
          this earth or in the heavens. We shall operate until the work
          that God has designed pertaining to this earth shall be
          accomplished, and the living and the dead saved so far as they
          are capable of being saved according to eternal laws that exist
          in the heavens, and according to the decrees of the Almighty.
          Don't you think we have something to do? I remember when I was
          first called to the Apostleship some 46 years ago. I looked at
          the calling square in the face, and said, "Well, this is a life
          work: this is an operation that will last a life time." I have
          got other ideas since then, namely that when I get through in
          this world I expect to officiate in the other. Hence it is an
          eternal operation, and that is the difference between what I then
          thought and what I now think. God has revealed unto us great and
          glorious truths, and He is prepared to reveal more if we will
          only place ourselves under His guidance and His direction. Let us
          seek to follow the principle that Jesus inculcated--to do the
          will of our Father who is in heaven, who said, "I seek not mine
          own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me." We are
          here as much as He was here, and under obligations as He was to
          do the will of our Heavenly Father. We should subject ourselves
          to the law of God, the word of God, and the will of God. I say
          continually, "O God, lead me in the right path: O God, preserve
          me from all error; O God, I am a poor, feeble, weak, erring human
          creature, surrounded with infirmities. I need Thy help all the
          day long. O God, help me." That is my feeling, and the feeling of
          my brethren of the First Presidency, and of the Twelve and
          others. We feel that we need the help of the Almighty. We will
          try and be humble, and be faithful and true to our covenants. And
          if we listen to counsel, and obey the laws of God, and do the
          things that He requires at our hands, He will help us and bless
          us, and He will bless Zion and preserve Israel, and woe to them
          that fight against Zion, for God will fight against them. But He
          will preserve us if we are faithful and true to our integrity. We
          will be blessed in time, we will be brought nearer to the
          heavens. The light of revelation will burst upon our heads, and
          the glories of the eternal worlds wild be made manifest. We will
          rejoice together in the fullness of blessings of the Gospel of
          peace, and by and will be crowned with glory, honor, immortality
          and eternal life in the celestial kingdom of our God.
          God bless you and lead you in the paths of life, in the name of
          Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 /
          Brigham Young, June 22, 1884
                            Brigham Young, June 22, 1884
                          REMARKS BY APOSTLE BRIGHAM YOUNG,
                    Delivered in the Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                          Sunday Afternoon, June 22, 1884.
                              Reported by John Irvine.
          I am thankful for the opportunity afforded me of meeting with the
          Latter-day Saints in this Tabernacle. Though I have been absent
          but a short time, yet it has been a long journey in one sense of
          the word. Brother F. M. Lyman and myself left this place on the
          3rd of May, for the purpose of visiting our settlements in the
          northern part of Arizona and New Mexico. We have accomplished the
          object of our mission and are thankful to be at home again. We
          have met many friends in these distant settlements, and I might
          say some enemies; but we have been particularly favored in all of
          our meetings, and where we found enemies in some instances we
          left them friends; for as I understand the mission of the Elders
          of this Church, it is a mission of peace, to extend the olive
          branch to all people upon the face of the earth. I do not
          consider it my duty nor my privilege to make war upon
          individuals, or upon sects or parties in the Territories of
          Arizona or New Mexico, not even in the Territory of Utah. From my
          earliest recollections, pretty nearly, to the present time,
          constant persecution has followed this people. I do not feel like
          persecuting. I have felt sometimes that I would like to stand up
          for my rights and tell men, "Thus far can you go and no further;"
          but I have come to the conclusion that I have no desire to take
          that little business out of the hands of God Almighty. He has
          managed it excellently well thus far in behalf of this people,
          far better and more gloriously than any human being could have
          managed it; for if we had had our desires sometimes, we might
          have injured the cause of God. While for a little season we have
          suffered, in the end we have been made whole and have been
          greatly extended, greatly blessed, and God continues to be our
          In the settlements we have visited, we found our enemies in the
          same condition that enemies have shown themselves to be in this
          Territory--fighting, beating the empty air, thinking that they
          had a foe before them, thinking that they had somebody that they
          could persecute; but their anger has been turned towards each
          other, and God has over-ruled for the good of those that serve
          We have visited most of our settlements in the Territories I have
          mentioned--Arizona and New Mexico--and while one would suppose
          from the vituperations of the wicked that all was excitement, and
          that our people were frightened and about to be swallowed up, I
          can say that we found the Saints peacefully enjoying their homes.
          They were ploughing the ground, planting the corn, sowing the
          wheat, planting out orchards, vineyards, putting up fences,
          erecting new buildings, making reservoirs to retain the water,
          that they might have wherewith to irrigate their crops, opening
          up farms, clearing away the timber where they could have other
          farms, etc. We found all this work going on; found the people
          going to meeting on the Sabbath day; preaching and teaching the
          peaceful things of the Kingdom of God, the children attending
          their Sabbath schools; also their day schools, as we term them,
          in need of teachers in some places, but any number of pupils; and
          wherever we have attended conference among the Latter-day Saints,
          the rule has held good that one-third of the population of these
          settlements were under eight years of age. It is a remarkable
          thing, very strange indeed; but we find that in our settlements
          in the south, our people are greatly blessed, as elsewhere, with
          children, and this valuable immigration from above is extending.
          I do not know how long it will be before Congress will legislate
          against having babies; but it don't look much like this
          immigration could be stopped now. These children are swelling the
          ranks of the Latter-day Saints, and the Saints are struggling,
          with what power God has given them, to provide the means of good
          education and to bring them up in the way that they should go. I
          can see no objection to this myself, others may; but God is good
          to this people; and we find peace and harmony and prosperity as a
          general thing among the Latter-day Saints in the eastern Arizona,
          and also in the Little Colorado Stakes of Zion. I was thankful to
          see all this; for it was a testimony that God is mindful of His
          It is true that some people whom we met in the capital of Arizona
          Territory, urged upon us the necessity of not introducing what
          they believe to be our favorite doctrine into the Territory of
          Arizona--plural marriage. Those who were inclined to be friendly
          to us said: "Gentlemen, make your fight in Utah. You are in the
          majority there. Don't introduce this practice into Arizona. You
          are few in number here, and your enemies are numerous and
          perfectly relentless. They don't care to what trouble or
          inconvenience you are put: and while your settlements are
          struggling in their infancy eliminate this doctrine from your
          creed, that which is obnoxious to the people, and introduce only
          that which can be tolerated, at least until you gain strength to
          walk alone." To the gentlemen who said this to me in all
          sincerity, in all good feeling, I made this answer: "So far as
          our doctrines are concerned we know them to be from God." Yes,
          they are the revelations of the mind and will of God to us, and
          the "obnoxious doctrine" (so called) to this nation, and I might
          say the civilized world, we know to be a revelation from Almighty
          God to us. If you would have us eliminate from this book [the
          Book of Doctrine and Covenants], one revelation that God has
          given us simply because the people at large, and the majority of
          the people of this nation, have decided that it is untrue, which
          next in the category of the revelations which God has revealed
          must we eliminate from this book? Must we give up principle and
          doctrine simply to suit a majority of people? In one sense of the
          word our Republican institutions are supposed to place the power
          of success in the hands of the majority: but we have never found
          it so--our experience differs on this point. We have been in the
          minority for upwards of 50 years, and we have been crowded and
          apparently overwhelmed. Thousands of wealthy people sought to
          crush us when we were but small, but a child, as it were. But the
          majority did not succeed. Why? Because the infant struggling for
          bare existence has been led and preserved by the hand of God.
          They were led into a land which seemed a desert, but now flowing
          with all that could strengthen that child, bring it forward, and
          make it a full-grown man as we see the people to-day. I am
          willing, in political matters, to take that stand in the midst of
          this people under present circumstances, at least, to let the
          majority rule, and if one side is the weaker, which necessarily
          is the case, let it say amen in a political sense to what the
          stronger party may do for the government of this Territory. But
          in the things pertaining to conscience, no man, no set of men, no
          Governor, no President, can control me before my God. I must
          control my own heart, my own feelings. I am a free man in
          relation to these matters, not bowing to any majority nor to any
          party. So are all the Latter-day Saints. We are free to worship
          God according to the dictates of our own conscience.
          But, says one, you are breaking the laws. How do you know we are
          breaking the laws? I think some one has written, and it used to
          be taken for sound doctrine, that a bad law is no law at all. But
          it is not so now. A bad law must pass current for a little
          season, and it may last a good while if the wicked rule; but,
          thank God, there are honest men to be raised up to rule the
          country who will administer justice and equity in the midst of
          the people.
          In our settlements in Arizona, and New Mexico, we found the same
          feelings predominating that we find here in Salt Lake and in the
          settlements in this Territory. We find the good are growing
          better, their faith is increasing, they are laboring more
          assiduously to promote the interests of Zion; while those that
          are weak are growing weaker, those that are bad are growing
          worse; and I have always believed that the Kingdom of God could
          never be strengthened by numbers when those numbers were of a
          mixed character, the good with the bad. If, as we believe and
          testify, this is the Church and Kingdom of God, the wheat and the
          tares will grow together for a little season, until those that
          are, or may be termed, the wheat, may be strengthened, and the
          tares may be plucked up and bound in bundles, ready for the
          burning. I was thankful, however, to witness the fact that the
          Latter-day Saints, at least the majority of them, are growing
          better, becoming firmer in the principles of the everlasting
          Gospel. They strive to practice what they preach, and the Saints
          in the South are no exception to this rule. They are seeking to
          live their religion, to serve God, to perfect themselves in the
          knowledge of the truth, and to build up a Zion here in this
          Territory. The golden rule which has been laid down, and this
          people have adopted it, "Do unto others as you would have others
          do unto you," has been changed a little in some districts which
          we have visited, not among our people, but among those of the
          world. They have changed it, and say, "Do unto others as others
          would have you do unto (?) them." It is a brass rule, a
          counterfeit, it is not the golden rule; but the Latter-day Saints
          in all of their troubles and trials in these extended regions
          which we have visited, have adopted the golden rule, and are
          seeking not put it into practice, not only towards each other,
          but towards those who are inimical to their interests.
          As I have said, the settlements are in a prosperous condition.
          Some of them have even profited greatly by certain laws which
          have been enacted, in the Territory of Arizona, particularly. I
          found in one settlement that the people were receiving school tax
          money to exceed all of their other taxes put together. There was
          refunded to them from the Territorial school tax, more money than
          they paid out for all their taxes. I was surprised at this: but
          it simply proved this fact: that the Latter-day Saints had
          children in excess of other settlements in the Territory. I
          thought Zion is growing. If those who desire can succeed in
          placing us at the mercy of our enemies, I presume these things
          will be changed; but at present Zion is growing. I have never
          seen among the people of the Latter-day Saints greater progress
          both in secular and spiritual matters than I witnessed in the
          settlements we have visited in the last two months. One would
          suppose from what is said in the papers, and the coldness that is
          exhibited by even fair-minded men in relation to the cause of
          this people--one would suppose that it would at least check our
          progress; that under the present pressure the Latter-day Saints
          would begin to weaken in their faith, and in laboring to
          establish such unpopular doctrines and principles as they are
          undertaking to establish, but all this seems to make the Saints
          more zealous in their labors.
          Persecution has done us no harm. In fact it seems to me that we
          need about so much persecution--that we need to carry great loads
          to make us remember our God. If all was prosperity and peace, I
          presume we would lose our faith, just as the ancient Christians
          did when they became popular. But I pray that the time may never
          come that we may be popular with a people who foster such
          institutions as are found in Christendom to-day.
          With all this persecution upon us, the Latter-day Saints are
          doing what may be rightfully termed a stupendous labor. Look
          abroad upon what the people are doing. Go to the settlements; see
          the improvements they are making upon their farms, in their
          dwellings, in everything. Behold these temples that are being
          reared, costing millions of dollars! Who is doing this labor? Is
          it any rich man worth millions of dollars? No. It is a few poor
          people, comparatively speaking, who are rearing these temples at
          such an immense cost. What are they doing it for? The question
          may well be asked, What are we expending these immense sums of
          money for? We are preparing for the second coming of the Lord
          Jesus Christ, just as truly as the world is ripening in iniquity
          and preparing to receive His judgments when He does come. That is
          a pretty bold saying, but it is true. We are doing this labor,
          and we have got all Christendom to carry on our shoulders with
          their special legislation, with their persecution, and with their
          antagonism, all aiming to destroy us. Hence, with all this, we
          have our hands as full as any other people upon the face of the
          earth. Our labor for the dead alone, which is occupying so much
          of our attention, is more than all Christendom ever dreamed
          of--for the amelioration of the condition of their progenitors.
          They don't know anything about it, though their own Bible speaks
          of this principle. Who are we laboring for? Ourselves alone? No.
          We are laboring for the sires of those men who are persecuting us
          to-day, for the men who would trample us in the dust and destroy
          the institution which God has revealed. We are laboring to carry
          the Gospel to those that are in prison to whom Jesus preached and
          to those that have died without a knowledge of the Gospel. We are
          struggling, I say, with superhuman effort to erect temples
          wherein this work may be done. It is for their fathers and their
          mothers that we are laboring. We are striving to tell the people
          of the world what we are doing. I as an individual cannot shirk
          it. I have my part to perform. So have these men and these women
          throughout the length and breadth of the Territories and States
          we occupy. I wish Christendom knew what we are doing. I wish they
          knew what God has commanded us to do. They would take the yoke
          from our necks so far as they are concerned. And still what would
          we amount to without opposition? Nothing. We must have the
          opposition of the world. If we were of the world the world would
          love us: but we have come out of the world, therefore the world
          hate us. That is true in every sense of the word.
          God help us to carry our load faithfully, earnestly, sincerely,
          with the integrity which God alone can give, being kind to all
          men, and seeking with every effort and every energy of our
          natures to follow the example that Jesus gave, that we may attain
          to salvation in the Kingdom of God, is my prayer, in the name of
          Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 /
          Erastus Snow, May 31st, 1884
                            Erastus Snow, May 31st, 1884
                           DISCOURSE BY APOSTLE ERASTUS SNOW, 
               Delivered in the Stake Meeting House, Ephraim, Saturday
                       (Quarterly Conference) May 31st, 1884.
                             (Reported by John Irvine.)
          Truly we are blessed people. Of all people upon the face of the
          earth we have most reason to be thankful that the Lord our God
          has been mindful of us, and has set His hand the second time to
          recover Israel.
          The prophet Isaiah in the 11th chapter of his book says:
          "And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a
          branch shall grow out of his roots."
          "And the spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him, the spirit of
          wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the
          spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord;"
          "And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the
          Lord; and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither
          reprove after the hearing of his ears:"
          "But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with
          equity for the meek of the earth; and he shall smite the earth
          with the rod of his mouth and with the breath of his lips shall
          he slay the wicked."
          I understand this to have reference to our Savior who, after the
          flesh, was a descendant of Jesse, Jesse being the father of King
          David. Out of the stock of Jesse came the royal house that not
          only ruled in Israel anciently, but the Savior, who is appointed
          of His Father to be King of Kings and Lord of Lords, because He
          is anointed to be the Savior of mankind, and when He comes the
          second time, according to the revelations of St. John, He will
          have the name I have mentioned.
          "And he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither
          reprove after the hearing of his ears;"
          "But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with
          equity for the meek of the earth."
          This, too, is a lesson for all his people--for His Servants who
          minister on the earth, for the judges in Israel, the Bishops,
          High Councils--not always to judge after the sight of the eye nor
          to "reprove after the hearing of the ear, but with righteousness
          shall he judge the poor." Sometimes we find the poor oppressed,
          though this is not common among the Latter-day Saints, who are
          influenced, generally, by a spirit of charity and love; but
          sometimes in our midst, as in the world, people are accused
          wrongfully, things are misrepresented, and for this reason the
          prophet speaks of the Savior as he does. We are not always able
          to determine with certainty the character of any
          transaction--that is to say, of the spirit and motive that
          influence and promote action--merely from what we see, nor yet
          from what somebody may tell us. It is necessary that we become
          enlightened by the Holy Spirit, to enable us to see as God sees,
          and to understand the motives, purposes and designs of the hearts
          of our fellow-men. God judges us all according to the motives and
          designs of the heart. If our purpose is to do good, and that
          which is right in His sight, he judges us accordingly, though we
          may, through our weakness, or through circumstances that we are
          not always able to control, do things that are not strictly in
          their outward appearance right and correct, or we may neglect to
          do that which we should do. The Lord judges all men according to
          the motives that prompt the action, rather than from the action
          itself. It is not murder in the sight of heaven always, when a
          man is killed, for sometimes he brings his blood upon his own
          head by thrusting himself upon some other one to destroy him and
          is himself slain in the attack, and his blood is therefore upon
          his own head, and it is not counted murder to the man that slew
          him. The one who only saw a part of the transaction might accuse
          the other of murder; but when it comes to be sifted to the
          foundation, and both hearts can be scanned, and the cause that
          resulted in the conflict discovered, it is found that the man
          that slew is innocent, an the man that was slain is the guilty
          one. I refer to this as a sample. So with many of the
          transactions of life. So also we may neglect duties that we
          should attend to, but we neglect them in our ignorance, when we
          are uninformed, and the Lord does not lay it to our charge until
          we are better instructed and our defects pointed out to us. Then
          if we neglect them He holds us responsible for that neglect. So
          also we may do things that in themselves are not right, not
          strictly correct, and yet if we are not posted and are ignorant
          of the evil of the transaction, it is not imputed to us as evil.
          This is the doctrine that Jesus laid down. "That servant, which
          knew his Lord's will, and prepared not himself, neither did
          according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes. But he
          that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be
          beaten with few stripes." That is, a few stripes shall be meted
          out to him merely to vindicate the law, and to make an impression
          upon him that what he had done was wrong, though he was ignorant
          of it before; but a little punishment is meted out, just enough
          to satisfy and vindicate the law, and to correct the impression
          upon the individual, to show him that he must be careful, for he
          had trodden upon forbidden ground. This is a rule that our Father
          is governed by in judging His children, and it is a rule that we
          should strive also to be governed by in regard to one another,
          and especially those who are called to be judges in Israel, or
          whose calling and duty it is to settle difficulties and assist in
          adjusting differences among their brethren and sisters.
          "And he shall smite the earth with his rod of his mouth, and with
          the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked."
          I understand this to be a figurative expression of the Prophet
          Isaiah: the rod of His mouth by which He should smite the earth.
          I understand that to be the word that proceeded out of His mouth,
          the words given of His Father; for His word was that which He
          received from the Father, and that which goeth forth among the
          children of men, conquering and to conquer. It is that word that
          has made impressions upon the Latter-day Saints in other lands
          and countries where they were born, and brought them to believe
          and obey the Gospel, and gathered them to this land. And it is
          that word also which condemns the wicked, and therefore the
          prophet says:
          "With the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked."
          For the Gospel of life and salvation is a savor of death unto
          death, or of life unto life. So says the Apostle Paul. It was so
          in his days, in the days when Jesus and His Apostles first
          proclaimed this Gospel to the Jews in Palestine; when they went
          among the Gentiles it was the same. It is the same to-day. It has
          been the same in all ages of the world. When the Gospel is sent
          forth, the word of God among the people, it is a savor of death
          unto death, or of life unto life. Therefore while the righteous
          are governed and exalted and blessed through the word, the wicked
          perish. This is illustrated in another form of expression by the
          Apostle Paul, when he says that he was slain through the law.
          Says he:
          "For I was alive without the law once; but when the commandment
          came, sin revived, and I died."
          He is using this illustration to the Jews--"Sin revived, and I
          died"--that is, when the law was made known--when the will and
          commandments of God were revealed and made known, woe! be unto
          those who should hear and disobey, for if they disobeyed
          condemnation would follow. This illustrates the principle
          contained in this verse I have read from Isaiah:
          "With the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked."
          And this is equally true of his fellow laborers and servants who
          have the word of God in faith, and speak in the name of the Lord,
          and by the power of the Holy Ghost, and have authority so to
          speak and act. Their testimony, their words, and the counsels of
          God that go unto the people through them, are a savor of life
          unto life, or of death unto death. The Gospel exalts those who
          receive it, and brings condemnation and destruction upon those
          who refuse to obey it. But without the Gospel being sent out by
          authority and power from God, the inhabitants of the earth could
          not be ripened for destruction. We read in many places in the
          Scriptures concerning the destruction of the wicked in the last
          days. But we read also in other Scriptures, that the Lord
          destroys them only when they are ripe in their iniquity. Jesus,
          in prophesying of His second coming, and the destruction that
          shall fall upon the wicked, speaks in this wise--that they shall
          fill up the cup of their iniquity. This principle we see referred
          to and illustrated in the days of Abraham. The Lord promised unto
          him the land of Canaan for an everlasting possession.
          Nevertheless, his seed must be brought into bondage in Egypt, and
          remain there until those who dwelt in the land of Canaan had
          filled up the cup of their iniquity. The people were not yet ripe
          for destruction, and therefore the Lord could not displace them
          and put Abraham and his seed in possession of his land.
          So the Lord has dealt with nations and generations from the
          beginning, and so will He in the latter times. We need not marvel
          because the Latter-day Saints are everywhere spoken against, and
          the wicked conspire to overthrow them. We need not marvel that
          even in this boasted land of freedom and liberty, statesmen,
          rulers and judges should place the iron heel of oppression upon
          the Latter-day Saints, and seek by every way in their power to
          bring evil upon them, to discourage them, to hedge up their way,
          and to destroy them. They must needs do these things. They must
          needs harden their hearts against the Lord and against His
          commandments. They must needs do many things that are wicked in
          His sight and oppressive to His people, in order that God may
          judge them, and that they fill up the cup of their iniquity. And
          it must needs be that the Saints, too, should be tried in all
          things even as Abraham was tried when he was commanded to offer
          up his only son. It must needs be that when the Gospel found us
          in our scattered condition mid the nations of the earth, and we
          yielded obedience to it, that we should be despised of our fellow
          creatures, that we should be reviled, so that we should feel it a
          pleasure to leave our fatherland, the graves of our ancestors,
          the home of our youth and childhood, and gather to Zion. Were it
          not for these two things that are working in the earth we should
          not be gathered together; we should not be willing to do it; we
          should love the home of our ancestors and the country that gave
          us birth. But because of the persecutions and hatred of the
          wicked we are weaned from them. As the Savior said on a certain
          "Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I come not to
          send peace, but a sword."
          "For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and
          the daughter against her mother, and the daughter-in-law against
          her mother-in-law.
          "And a man's foes shall be they of his own household."
          At first thought it would seem a strange idea that the Prince of
          Peace, whose birth was announced by angels to the shepherds
          saying, "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good
          will toward men"--I say, at first thought it would seem strange
          that the Prince of Peace so announced should say:
          "I come not to send peace, but a sword * * * I am come to set a
          man at variance against his father, etc. And a man's foes shall
          be they of his own household."
          "But it is all easily explained by our experience and
          observation, and by considering His teachings and the effects
          thereof, and the words of the Apostle concerning the preaching of
          the Gospel being a savor of life unto life, or of death unto
          death. We go out into the Gentile world, and we find a great
          variety of religious opinions and many different religious sects.
          We find Catholics, Protestants, and various denominations and
          sects of Protestantism. They are all laboring together in the
          same field, preaching different doctrines and items of faith, and
          all professing to be the religion of Christ. All their teachers
          profess to be preachers of the Gospel, and their followers all
          profess to be Christians, and yet there is not power enough in
          all the doctrines and systems that they are teaching and
          establishing to produce a separation between the righteous and
          the wicked. They all continue to harmonize together--at least so
          far that they all count each other Christians, and it is very
          difficult to distinguish the Christian from the infidel, unless
          it be that the Christian is the worst. But not so when the
          fullness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ is preached. It always did
          produce a separation between the righteous and the wicked. It
          drew the line of distinction. It was always like putting yeast
          into a beer barrel. It sets it to working, and whoever has
          examined a beer barrel while the beer is working in it under a
          microscope, will see the way that the beer works itself clear. It
          is by the different properties it contains running in different
          directions. You will see the liquid full of little animals
          running in different directions, and it continues to work in this
          sort of a way until it becomes clear. Well, the working of beer
          in a barrel reminds me of the preaching of the Gospel in the
          earth. It sets Saints to running together. It works out apostates
          from among us, and they take the opposite direction. It draws the
          line of distinction between the righteous and the wicked, and
          that work begins from the moment the Gospel is sounded among the
          people. The Spirit of truth operates upon the hearts of those who
          are open to receive it. It draws them to the fountain of life and
          light. It draws them into the water and then to Zion, and then
          keeps drawing them nearer and nearer to God; while with those
          that reject the Gospel, they keep going further and further from
          the Lord and His people. They harden their hearts more and more
          against them, and give way to wickedness and all manner of
          corruption. But while the wicked on the one hand are thus filling
          up their cup of iniquity, the righteous, on the other hand are
          called to sanctify themselves and be prepared for the glorious
          coming of the Savior. It is for this cause that we build temples,
          and that God reveals to us the ordinances for the sanctification
          of His people and further glory and exaltation.
          The ordinance of baptism, simple as it is, is appointed by the
          Father as the first fruits of repentance--that is, baptism in
          water for the remission of sins. He did not appoint Presbyterian
          baptism and Roman Catholic baptisms, sprinkling a little water on
          the forehead and calling that baptism. God never appointed these.
          There is no place in the Bible to indicate that He ever
          sanctioned such a thing. The Savior set the example to the human
          family himself, in going down into the water and being immersed
          in the river Jordan by John the Baptist. But this same order of
          baptism had been revealed before this: but that there needs be no
          mistake the Savior set the example before all the people, and
          then continued himself to baptize for a season in the same manner
          and ordained His Apostles to continue the work. And He has
          appointed that all those who receive this ordinance in His name
          may receive also the resurrection of their bodies, and baptism,
          or immersion in water, is in the likeness of the death and burial
          and resurrection of our Savior. By this ordinance we show forth
          unto the Lord that we lay off and bury the old man of sin in the
          waters of baptism, and by rising out of the waters of baptism we
          show forth unto the Lord that we put on the new man after Christ
          Jesus, and walk henceforth in newness of life. All those,
          therefore, who believe the Gospel, and yield obedience to its
          requirements, and are baptized in water for the remission of
          their sins, upon this act, if they continue to maintain this
          faith, they are entitled to be raised in the likeness of the
          glorious resurrected body of Christ. And yet, to consider this
          ordinance in the abstract, or as the unbelieving world look at
          it, we might ask what virtue there is in the ordinance of
          baptism? We might say, as did Naaman, the Syrian, to Elisha, when
          he came to be healed of his leprosy. The Prophet told him to go
          and wash himself seven times in Jordan. But Naaman rose up in a
          rage and said, in substance, "Have I not washed myself many a
          time in my rivers at home, and did it ever do me any good? Is
          there any more virtue in the waters of Jordan than the waters of
          my native place?" He did not believe the Prophet, and he turned
          to go away with a sorrowful heart. But his servant followed him
          and said: "My father, if the Prophet had bid thee do some great
          thing, wouldst thou not have done it? How much rather then, when
          he saith to thee, wash and be clean?" This caused Naaman to
          reflect; and he went and dipped himself seven times in Jordan. He
          was not healed when he dipped himself once, nor twice, nor
          thrice; but when he had dipped himself seven times he was
          cleansed of his leprosy. Was it the waters of Jordan that healed
          him, or is it the waters of the brook that we are immersed in
          that cleanses us from our sins? Not at all. It is the blood of
          Christ that was shed for the sins of the world that cleanseth us
          from our sins; but the water is the emblem and the means by which
          we comply with the commandment of God.
          And so with every other ordinance of the Gospel. So with the
          laying on of the hands of the Elders of Israel. The wicked will
          ask what virtue there is in the imposition of the hands of the
          Elders? Why, the virtue consists in obeying the commandments of
          heaven. For through the laying on of hands the sick are healed.
          Through the laying on of hands the Holy Ghost is given. Through
          the laying on of hands the Priesthood is conferred upon those who
          are counted worthy to receive it. Herein is the hiding of the
          Lord's power. It is this that the Prophet Habakkuk refers to when
          he speaks of the Lord coming in glory, and says: "He had horns
          coming out of his hand: and there was the hiding of his power."
          Horns we know in the Scriptures are often used as figures to
          represent power. Horns in the Apocalypse and in the prophecies of
          Daniel represent kingdoms and dynasties, and when one horn fell,
          another came up in its place, thus representing the fall of one
          dynasty and the rising of another. And so on. And the same may be
          said of the Priesthood: the ruling power that God bestows for the
          salvation of the human family is that which is given by the
          laying on of hands. But does this apply to the wicked, to the
          disobedient, or to the unbelieving? No, not at all; nor does
          remission of sins come to the wicked and unbelieving by merely
          being baptized. We have an example of this kind in the New
          Testament when Phillip baptized the people of Samaria, and Simon
          the sorcerer, was baptized also; but he was a hypocrite and a
          corrupt man, and he only sought to gain power whereby he might
          hoodwink and deceive the people and filch money from them. And
          when Peter and John came down and prayed with the people, and
          laid their hands upon them, they received the Holy Ghost. When
          Simon saw this, he offered them money saying, "Give me also this
          power, that on whomsoever I lay hands, he may receive the Holy
          Ghost." This he sought, as I have said, that he might obtain
          power to carry on his craft and to make money; but Peter answered
          him saying, "Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast
          thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money. * * * I
          perceive that thou art in the gall of bitterness, and in the bond
          of iniquity." There are other similar instances. But remission of
          sins cometh by baptism to those who believe and repent of their
          sins with all their hearts; the Holy Ghost is received by the
          laying on of the hands of the Elders; and the powers of the
          Priesthood are conferred in the same manner. Simple as the
          ordinances are, simple to look upon and to think upon, there is
          power in them, power accompanies them, power is made manifest
          among the people. The people are gathered together; the people
          are made one; the differences that existed among us depart. The
          traditions of the fathers are cast away. We are united in
          receiving the light and truth from above. Our hearts are made as
          one, no matter where we were born, or what race of people we have
          sprung from. This spirit working among the people, and going
          abroad in the earth is accomplishing what the Lord and His
          servants have predicted. It is preparing a people for the coming
          of the Savior.
          Persecution begins, as I said, when the Gospel is sounded in our
          ears in various lands and countries of our home and birth. It
          follows us up. When we were a small people organized resistance
          and persecution commenced by townships in the United States. As
          we grew and become a stronger people, more extensive
          organizations were arrayed against us by countries or larger
          communities. At first the Latter-day Saints were driven from
          their homes in the State of new York, and they fled to Kirtland,
          Ohio, where persecution was again waged against them, until by
          and by the opposition was combined to such an extent in all the
          surrounding country, that they were obliged to flee from that
          region to Missouri. Here opposition became still more extensive
          until the whole State rose up against them--rose up and became a
          mob, even Governor Lilburn W. Boggs, of Missouri became a sort of
          Solicitor General for the mob, and issued an exterminating order
          against the Saints, as utterly illegal as the decree of any
          tyrant that ever lived. In that order he called upon his aids and
          principal generals to rally the militia of the State to execute
          the order of extermination that he issued. They despoiled us of
          our goods. They compelled us to sign a deed of trust of lands,
          houses and possessions to defray the expenses of the "war," as
          they termed it. That is, they robbed us, and drove us out of the
          State, and then compelled us to give them what we had, to pay
          them for doing it. Persecution still followed us in the States of
          Illinois, Iowa, and Missouri, and finally the Saints fled to
          these Rocky Mountains where there was nobody to oppose us, save
          the savages who roamed throughout the country. Here the Lord has
          planted our feet and made us strong. But it was predicted in
          early times that we should not only be persecuted by townships
          and counties, but by and by States should rise against us, and at
          last the whole United States would rise up against us. But in the
          midst of it all we have continued to grow, we have waxed strong.
          It is the power of God and not of man. It is by the word of God
          that we thrive, It is by the word of God that we are multiplying
          and increasing in the land; and the same God who commands the
          Elders of Israel to take the daughters of Israel to wife and who
          says "multiply and replenish the earth"--that same God sends the
          fruit and multiplies the sons and daughters of Israel in the
          land; as, when you sow the seed in the soil He sends the rains
          and gives a bountiful crop in your fields. It is the blessing of
          God that is resting upon the people. His people are multiplying
          in the land, and they are spreading abroad and possessing it in
          Idaho and Montana in the north, and Arizona and New Mexico in the
          South. The wicked are determined to persecute and drive us. Where
          will they drive us to? They say the "Mormons" must go. Where
          shall we go to? We have become like a city that is set on a hill,
          we cannot be hid. We have become a strong people, and they do not
          know what to do with us. Every drop of innocent blood which they
          shed, will spread the Gospel the faster. Every time they
          persecute us they will assist the work of God. "Mormonism" is
          like the mustard plant whose seed is ripe: when shaken it spreads
          the faster; or like the man I read of when I was a boy. When
          Canada thistles began to spread in the eastern States, this man
          was determined that he would put an end to them so far as his
          farm was concerned. So when the first thistle made its appearance
          he built a log heap over it and burned the pile. He thought he
          had squelched the thing; but to his horror and dismay the whole
          heap, the next year, was a dense mass of Canada thistles. So with
          "Mormonism," the more they "squelch" it, the faster it grows.
          God bless you in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 / John
          Q. Cannon, June 29, 1884
                            John Q. Cannon, June 29, 1884
            In the Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, Sunday Afternoon, June 29,
                              Reported by John Irvine.
                                      GIVEN TO
          Elder John Q. Cannon said: My brethren and sisters and friends,
          it is with feelings which I am utterly unable to express that I
          stand before you this afternoon--feelings on the one hand of
          gratitude to my Heavenly Father, that after an absence of nearly
          three years from this city I am again permitted to meet with my
          brethren and sisters in this place, and with feelings on the
          other hand of intense timidity in standing before so large an
          audience. But I rely, my brethren and sisters, upon your faith
          and prayers during the few moments that I may stand before you,
          and I rely, furthermore, upon the promise which our Lord gave,
          when He said, "Where two or three have gathered together in my
          name, there I am in the midst of them." I am satisfied, on my own
          part, that we, this afternoon have assembled ourselves in the
          name of the Lord, and I am consequently satisfied that His Spirit
          will be with us inasmuch as we seek for the same, inasmuch as we
          rid ourselves of every feeling of worldliness and come together
          with pure hearts to partake of the emblems of the death and
          suffering of our Lord, and to become instructed in the plan which
          He has laid down for our salvation.
          It's four days since I returned from a mission, and in six weeks
          it will have been three years since I left this city, in
          obedience to a call made upon me by the authorities of the
          Church. On the 9th of August, 1881, I left this city on a mission
          to Great Britain, in company with eleven other missionaries, who
          were destined for Scandinavia. We reached Liverpool in due time,
          and I was assigned, shortly after my arrival there, to the London
          Conference, where I labored with great pleasure until the 17th of
          March, 1882. Early in the month the then President of the
          European Mission--Apostle Albert Carrington--notified me that I
          should proceed to the German Mission, and within a few days after
          receiving this notice I joined my brother in North Germany. Of
          course in going to Germany I had to learn the language; I was
          utterly ignorant of it when I started and when I landed there;
          but the Lord strengthened my memory, and in a short time I was
          able to make myself understood, and pursue the real object of my
          mission. I labored--it is not for me to say with how much
          success--until relieved a short time ago to return home.
          I can say, my brethren and sisters, that I have enjoyed my
          mission greatly. The blessing of the Lord has been with me. The
          promises that were sealed upon my head by the Presidency before I
          went have been literally fulfilled, and, to my mind, in a most
          remarkable manner.
          Above all things I prize my mission for the testimony it has
          given me of the truth of this Gospel. It may seem strange to you
          that I make this assertion; because one would naturally think
          that I had a testimony before I went. I, however, confess this
          was not the case. I had heard what the world calls
          Mormonism--from my childhood up I had heard nothing else. I
          believed as much as it was possible that this, the Gospel as
          preached by the Elders of the Church of Jesus Christ of
          Latter-day Saints, was the true religion, and was the path of
          redemption as proclaimed by Jesus Christ and His Apostles. This
          was my firm belief. But a direct and firm and steadfast testimony
          of the truth of the Gospel I had not received, and it was to
          obtain this testimony, more than for anything else, that I obeyed
          the call that was made of me. I had heard, as you had, that every
          man who returned from a mission and rose up in this stand or
          elsewhere to proclaim his testimony and to report his labors--I
          had heard every man say: "I know this is the Gospel of Jesus
          Christ." And I felt within myself, if I can acquire a knowledge
          of the truth of the Gospel through going on a mission, I am
          willing to go. I valued my salvation and a knowledge of the truth
          of the Gospel just that much. Well, I went, and I labored with
          great weakness, I have no doubt. But the Lord heard my prayers.
          He granted unto me a testimony of the truth of the Gospel, and
          from the time that I received the first one until this moment,
          one testimony has followed another in rapid succession. I am
          therefore able to proclaim before you, as I have done with much
          pleasure before the world, that I do know that God has spoken in
          these our days, that He has revealed Himself and restored his
          Priesthood by means of which the human family--those of them who
          are willing to be saved and to obey the requirements which He has
          given--may be saved.
          It was told me before I started away--the remark was made to me
          by my father: "My son, you will find in the world that the
          nations are about in the same condition as the Athenians were
          when Paul went to preach to them. They have temples and they have
          altars built, but these are dedicated to the 'Unknown God.'" I
          found this to be the truth. I found the word, the written word of
          God was read in every church in every land, and that every family
          had it; but I was surprised to find that but few of them were
          willing to receive the truths which are therein contained. They
          were content with the dead letter of the law; and when I
          undertook or attempted to explain the principles of life and
          salvation, the principles which Jesus Christ taught His
          disciples, and which they taught all those who would listen to
          their testimony, I found there was a great coolness. People would
          not listen. They were content with what they had received. This
          was my general experience. On the other hand I found very many
          who acknowledged to me the truth of that which I had said. When I
          said unto them, "faith in the Lord Jesus Christ is insufficient
          to save you in His Kingdom;" when I said that something more was
          necessary than a simple faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, and
          attempted to prove my position by Scripture, I found many who
          said, "You are right; something more is necessary according to
          the Scriptures; faith alone can not save us." But when I went on
          to explain the other principles of the Gospel--repentance,
          baptism for the remission of sins by one who has authority to
          baptize, and the laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy
          Ghost, I discovered that they said, "That may be all true, it is
          true, we believe, but we don't want it." That has been my
          experience and the experience of others in a great many
          instances. There are thousands in the world--I have spoken with
          hundreds I believe--who have made a similar confession--that
          faith, repentance, baptism, and the laying on of hands for the
          reception of the Holy Ghost, were Scriptural principles, that
          they could not be denied, that the same Gospel was preached by
          Jesus Christ and His Apostles--but I have found among those
          hundreds very few who were willing to obey those principles. I am
          happy to say, however, that some few have obeyed them--that I
          have been the means, in the hands of God, of bringing some to a
          knowledge of the truth, and I am very thankful for this
          It may, perhaps, interest you to know something of the present
          prospects of the Swiss and German mission, where I have labored
          for upwards of two years. We have some seventeen Elders in the
          field. Some of these have been laboring in Austria, one is in
          Italy, all the others are in Switzerland and Germany. In certain
          parts of Germany the laws are very strict. Public meetings of any
          kind are forbidden. We are, therefore, not allowed to preach.
          This has been brought about by the action of the Socialists, with
          whom we are confounded. They have held meetings, as you who read
          the papers know, and passed resolutions to upset governments and
          kingdoms, and reduce everything to chaos, if possible. In the
          kingdom of Prussia, however, we are at present in the enjoyment
          of liberty to a great extent. We have the permission of the
          authorities of the city of Berlin to hold our regular meetings,
          and we can announce these meetings in the papers if we desire. Of
          course our meetings are visited by detectives and policemen
          occasionally, to see that nothing contrary to the laws of the
          land is promulgated, which action, is, of course, quite agreeable
          to us. This is the case, however, only as regards the kingdom of
          Prussia. In the kingdom of Bavaria, which is strongly Catholic,
          we have been unable, up to the present time, to obtain any rights
          whatever. We have been threatened and in some cases expelled for
          having attempted to preach the Gospel. We have been forbidden to
          hold meetings of any kind. It has even been declared to us that
          where seven persons assemble together, that number would be
          considered a meeting, and if the participants were strangers they
          would be expelled, while natives would be heavily fined. In the
          Grand Duchy of Baden the same rule holds. In the kingdom of
          Wortemberg, it has never been forbidden that we hold meetings,
          but we have as yet no official permission to do so. Of course in
          Switzerland we have full permission. We can hold our meetings in
          any house. It is not yet allowed us, or in fact any one, to hold
          open air meetings. The prospects of the mission, as I look at it,
          are very good, and I think the day is soon coming when these
          rigorous laws will be broken, when all those who desire to serve
          God in the way that He has commanded, although it may not be in
          accordance with the desires of the rulers, may have the
          privilege. The laws of Bavaria pretend to give full freedom of
          worship; but the actual fact is, every person is prohibited,
          through pressure which is brought to bear upon him, from
          attending anything but the established church, which is Catholic,
          or the Lutheran. People are expected to attend or at least be
          members of one of these churches; and they are compelled to make
          an official acknowledgement of their belief in their work books,
          which are a sort of credential, containing the name, age,
          business, and place of residence of every workman in the country.
          In this book each man must announce his religion, and if this
          happens to be anything but Lutheran or Catholic, he is put to
          great trouble and inconvenience, would perhaps find difficulty in
          obtaining work at all; and in case he called himself a "Mormon,"
          would be punished according to the regulations which some of the
          States have made. I do not believe that the king of Bavaria, and
          the rulers of the kingdoms are as bitter as some of the
          subordinate officials. The strongest persecution we have met with
          has been in the city of Nurenburg, and that has been on the part
          of the circuit judge, a man who in other respects is very
          liberal, but whose mind became prejudiced through some false
          reports which came into the country, and were scattered by the
          press just as we made a beginning. I nevertheless hope--and I
          believe it is the general feeling--that the day is not far
          distant when freedom of worship will be allowed--when the Elders
          can go through the country and proclaim the Gospel without fear
          or molestation. We pray for that day, and have great hopes that
          there are many thousands in those countries who will receive the
          The Elders are laboring energetically. They have spared
          themselves no pains to discover those who are willing to receive
          their testimony. They are laboring faithfully and with good
          results. The emigration has been quite extensive, as you know;
          but the number of those baptized exceeds by a considerable amount
          the number that have emigrated. Our branches are therefore
          growing continually.
          My brethren and sisters: I am thankful to be able to testify to
          the truth of this Gospel, which is being preached in these days.
          I do know that Joseph Smith was a Prophet of God, and this is a
          testimony which I have received for myself. It is not because my
          parents taught me this, or because I have heard it from others;
          that has given me courage to bear this testimony before others.
          But I have felt free in saying to all men, "Repent and be
          baptized and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost, and
          that will give you a testimony as it has given it to me." That is
          the testimony, my brethren and sisters, that I feel to bear
          before you this afternoon.
          I am glad to be once more in these mountains, to breathe this
          air, to see those with whom I have grown up, and to feel once
          more at home. During the three years that I have been absent,
          many changes have taken place, some of them very mournful to me;
          but I am thankful to be back once more. And now that I am home, I
          hope to be able to work steadfastly in the cause of God, and to
          do my part in helping to build up His kingdom upon the earth.
          This is my desire, and I pray that the Lord will help all of us
          to remain true to the end, in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 /
          Wilford Woodruff, June 29, 1884
                           Wilford Woodruff, June 29, 1884
               President Wilford Woodruff then addressed the congregation.
          He said: We have been listening to the testimony of one of our
          Mormon mountain boys, who has been called in his youth to go
          forth to the nations of the earth to declare the Gospel of Jesus
          Christ to the inhabitants thereof. This is an example of this
          whole Mormon work in the day and generation in which we live.
          Joseph Smith himself was but a boy, an unlettered youth, when God
          called him over half a century ago, to listen to the voice of the
          Lord, and be an instrument in His hands to lay the foundation of
          His Church and Kingdom on the earth in the last dispensation of
          the fullness of times; and from that day to this men have been
          called--some from the plow, the plane, the hammer, and from the
          various occupations of life--to go forth and lift up their voices
          and bear record to the nations of the earth of the Gospel of the
          Son of God. And the Lord has manifested His power, and His mercy
          to all who have been called to go forth and bear record of His
          name; and Brother Cannon (John Q.) who has addressed us, like
          tens of thousands of others, can bear record before God, angels
          and men, before the heavens and the earth, to the truths of the
          Gospel of Jesus Christ, which have been revealed unto us in the
          day and generation in which we live. It is a marvelous work and a
          wonder in the earth, and it is attracting the attention of the
          whole human family. The inhabitants of the earth marvel and
          wonder, and many times desire to know what the end of these
          things will be. The Lord called upon Joseph Smith, as a literal
          descendant of Joseph, who was sold into Egypt, to lay the
          foundation of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
          The Church had been in the wilderness for nearly 1800 years. The
          Church and Kingdom of God had fallen away. The Gentiles had
          followed the same example of unbelief as did the Jews when they
          departed from the Gospel of Christ and put to death almost every
          man who bore the Holy Priesthood on the earth, or who preached
          the Gospel of the Son of God to the world. The Jews rejected the
          Messiah; they put Him to death; and they labored to overthrow the
          Church, although it went to them in all the power and glory, and
          with all the keys, principles, ordinances and priesthood, that it
          did to the patriarchs and prophets in former generations. For
          this the Jews were overthrown. They had to pay the bill for
          shedding the blood of the Lord's anointed; and the Lord rent the
          Kingdom out of their hands, and gave it into the hands of the
          Gentiles; and Paul the Apostle to the Gentiles, warned them
          strongly and faithfully to take heed and be cautious lest they
          should fall through the same example of unbelief. "For if God
          spare not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not
          thee." But all the Prophets and Apostles understood by vision and
          revelation that there was to be falling away. There has been a
          falling away. I can say of a truth--whether the world believe it
          or not--that from the day the apostles and disciples and those
          holding the Priesthood of the Lord Jesus Christ were put to
          death, there has not been a man on the face of God's footstool
          who has had the power to administer the ordinances of the Gospel
          so as to have power after death. I understand perfectly well the
          world does not believe this, nevertheless it is true. There never
          was a man breathed the bread of life in any age of the world, who
          had power to go forth and administer the ordinances of the Gospel
          of Christ, only by the power of that eternal and everlasting
          Priesthood which Melchizedek held, which Adam, Abraham, Moses,
          and Elias, and all the ancient Patriarchs and Prophets held.
          Jesus Christ held it. He was a High Priest after the order of
          Melchizedek, and has entered into the presence of God to plead
          for His brethren. The Apostles held it. No man in any age of the
          world had power to administer the ordinances of the Gospel
          without it. God himself, who has created worlds upon worlds, has
          created all these worlds and all those that have been saved have
          been redeemed by the power of that eternal and everlasting
          Priesthood. But as I said before, when the Prophets and Apostles
          and all men who held the Priesthood were put to death, the
          ordinances of the Gospel became without effect, and in
          consequence of this, the whole world has been filled with sects
          and parties, with false religions, and principles, until it would
          almost appear that there are the six hundred, three score and
          six, which John the Revelator saw in his vision. And this has
          been the condition of the whole Christian world from the days of
          Jesus Christ and His Apostles until the Lord raised up Joseph
          Smith, and commanded him to organize this Church and Kingdom. Did
          he attempt to do this until he received the Priesthood? He did
          not. He did not attempt to administer any one of the ordinances
          until he received the Holy Priesthood from under the hands of the
          holy men who were sent unto him from God out of heaven. The first
          man that ordained Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery to the
          Priesthood was John the Baptist, who was beheaded for the word of
          God and testimony of Jesus. Thus they were ordained to the
          Aaronic Priesthood. Joseph Afterwards received the Apostleship
          under the hands of Peter, James and John, who held the keys of
          the Apostleship. God Almighty could not establish His Kingdom,
          His Church, His Zion--which the Holy Bible declares from Genesis
          almost to Revelation should be established in the latter
          days--without men bearing that Priesthood. God had to raise up
          such a man as Joseph Smith, and establish His Church, by which to
          prepare a people for the coming of the Son of Man. To this end
          Joseph was brought forth. He received these oracles from God. He
          laid the foundation of this Church and Kingdom in his boyhood,
          and he, like the Savior, and many of God's other servants, spent
          but a short time in the flesh after he commenced his ministry.
          The Savior lived but three and a half years after He entered upon
          His ministry. Joseph Smith labored in the flesh some 14 years
          after the organization of the Church before he sealed his
          testimony with his blood, as did other Prophets and Patriarchs
          before him. I say, from that day until this, the Lord has called
          men to go forth and declare the Gospel of Christ. And Brother
          John Q. Cannon has testified, he knows for himself. Yes, he
          knows. There is no doubt of that. There are tens of thousands of
          this people who can bear the same testimony. It is true there is
          a difference with men with regard to the amount of testimony they
          have received to satisfy them of the truth of this work. Many men
          believe, but many say they require a certain amount of testimony
          before they know. I will say for myself: the greatest testimony I
          have ever received in this Church, (and I have spent over 50
          years of my life in it), has been the testimony of the Holy
          Ghost, has been the inspiration of Almighty God, has been the
          spirit of life and salvation, that still small voice that has
          rested upon me and rested upon my brethren from the time we were
          baptized into this Church until the present day. We lay hands
          upon the sick and they are healed by the power of God. We lay
          hands upon our brethren, and set them apart for missions. The
          Spirit of God rests upon us and inspires us in our words and
          thoughts what we should seal upon their heads. These words are
          fulfilled, and thousands upon thousands can testify of the truth
          The Bible contains a vast amount of prophecy concerning the last
          dispensation and the fullness of times; concerning the building
          up of the Kingdom of God in the last days; concerning a kingdom
          which shall become an everlasting kingdom, of whose dominion
          there shall be no end. God showed this to Daniel and to
          Nebuchadnezzar, as also to Isaiah, Jeremiah and Ezekiel. The
          Prophet Isaiah has portrayed the whole history of the Latter-day
          Saints who occupy these mountains of Israel. He described our
          travels here, and our labors since we came here. These Prophets
          saw our day, and they spake as they were moved upon by the Holy
          Ghost; and the prophecies are of no private interpretation. Their
          words are words of truth. Their words have had their fulfillment
          and will have to the end. The travels of this Church have been
          through deep waters, and this should not be a strange thing to
          the inhabitants of the earth. I will say here, without fear of
          contradiction, that no man, no set of men, no people, no church,
          no portion of the Kingdom of God can live godly in Christ Jesus
          without suffering persecution. You show me a Patriarch or Prophet
          that ever lived who taught the words of life and salvation
          without incurring the hatred, the wrath and the indignation of
          the surrounding nations, and you will show me something that I
          have not been able to find on the earth. But without dwelling
          upon this point, allow me to say that this is what ails the
          Mormons. This is the cause of the warfare made upon us by our
          nation to-day. God Almighty has set His hand to establish His
          Church and Kingdom on the earth. He has set His hand to gather
          His people to the mountains of Israel to build up a Zion. That
          Zion is here. We have made a beginning. We came here, on the 24th
          of July, 1847, a little handful of pioneers. We found a barren
          desert. It did not look as if any white men could live here. We
          found a few poor, miserable, degraded Indians. They would eat a
          pint of crickets for breakfast and supper, and this, with a few
          roots, was all the food they had. To-day, here is a tabernacle.
          To-day, you can travel one thousand miles throughout these
          valleys, from north to south, and you will find them filled with
          towns, villages and cities, and you will see temples,
          tabernacles, etc. What does it mean? It means that the God of
          Heaven is a God of truth. He decreed certain things, and these
          things are now coming to pass in spite of all earth and hell.
          That is what it means. Had it not been for this, Utah would have
          been a desert today as it was when we found it.
          The testimony of the Elders of Israel is true. This is the Gospel
          of Christ. It is the only Gospel the Lord ever revealed to man.
          And Paul the Apostle says: "Though we or an angel from heaven
          preach any other Gospel unto you than that which we have preached
          unto you, let him be accursed." The children of men do not
          believe the Gospel. They will have everything else on the face of
          the earth except the Gospel. The Lord has set His hand to fulfill
          His words and promises, and we are here to help Him in that
          business. We came here to these mountains by revelation, by
          inspiration. We were led here by Prophets, Apostles and inspired
          men; and this Church and Kingdom has continued to grow from the
          day it was organized until the present time. It will continue to
          grow. The Gospel of Christ is the truth. "Am I therefore become
          your enemy, because I tell you the truth," said Paul to the
          Galatians, in teaching them this principle. But the truth is
          unpopular. The world is full of error and falsehood. It will not
          accept the plan of life and salvation. 
          We are in the hands of God. God has called us to this labor. He
          has commanded us to preach the Gospel to the nations of the
          earth. This we have done so far as the doors have been opened to
          us. It seems strange to reflect upon the fact that such nations
          as Germany, Austria, and Prussia, should put up bars as strong as
          iron, so to speak, against the preaching of the Gospel of Christ
          in their midst. Still the Lord, as we have heard from Brother
          John Q. Cannon, is opening up the way. There are a great many of
          the house of Israel in Germany; there are a great many of the
          honest in heart throughout the nations of the earth, and they
          must hear the Gospel. We have been preaching it for over fifty
          years. The world in a great measure has rejected it. I heard
          Joseph Smith say a great deal in regard to the attitude this
          generation would assume in regard to the Gospel. He saw the
          situation. Said he: "The world will fight you. The world will war
          against you. Towns will arise and mob you, counties will oppose
          you, cities will oppose you, and the United States will combine
          against you. The world is full of darkness. Sin and wickedness is
          overwhelming the world as the waters cover the great deep. The
          devil rules over the world in a great measure. The world will war
          against you; the devil will, earth will, and hell will. But you
          must bear testimony of me. You must preach the Gospel, do your
          duty, and the Lord will stand by you. Earth and hell shall not
          prevail against you." "Fear not them which kill the body, but are
          not able to kill the soul; but rather fear him which is able to
          destroy both body and soul in hell." And I would say to our
          friends, that is the spirit that vibrates in the bosoms of tens
          of thousands of Latter-day Saints in these mountains. We stand
          upon this pedestal. This is our platform. What fear have we with
          regard to our enemies? Why should we fear? We are in the hands of
          God. We have come to this earth in this time upon a mission. We
          have been born on purpose in this generation to take part in this
          work. The Lord required an element to labor with. He will build
          up Zion. And I bear my testimony here to all men, and would to
          all the world if I had the power, that the work in which this
          people are engaged, small and insignificant as it may appear, is
          the work of God. It will roll forth. It will become a mountain.
          It will fill the whole earth. It will break in pieces all other
          kingdoms, and it will stand forever; for God Almighty has decreed
          it. Write it down. Watch the signs of the times. See if these
          things are not true. We are living in an important day. We are
          called to do a work for the Lord, and we are going to do it as
          far as we have time and opportunity. It has cost many men their
          lives; but men's lives are of little consequence compared with
          eternal life. Give me eternal life. As for this life, what does
          it amount to. Why should we fear death? Why, bless your souls, a
          few years ago this nation sacrificed a million of live in defense
          of the country. That may be all right. I have no fault to find.
          But is it any worse to die for the kingdom of God than it is to
          die for the honor of the country? Not much. Then let us be
          faithful. Let us trust in God. Leave all things in His hands, and
          all will be right.
          Now I would like to say a few words before I close, with regard
          to our present condition. Of course our affairs have become a
          national question. The eyes of all the world are looking towards
          us. But I will say this: it is a pitiful sight--it is a thing
          sorrowful to contemplate upon, that our wise Senators, yes, our
          wise Senators have to take falsehood into the halls of Congress
          to work upon to overthrow this Church and Kingdom: so with the
          pulpit, so with the press. Who tells the truth about Utah? Not
          one man in a thousand that attempts to represent this case. We
          have not a boy in Utah in our common schools, over twelve years
          of age, but knows, when he reads the statements of some of those
          Senators, that they are arguing on a false basis. They understand
          that perfectly. I am at the defiance of the world to prove that
          we use in our common schools anything but the text books of the
          world. We don't even use the Bible in our common schools. To do
          so would almost be treason in the eyes of our enemies. Yet these
          venerable Senators represent us as doing this. Why do Senators
          argue upon false premises to overthrow this people? If people
          would tell the truth about us, we should be perfectly satisfied.
          We have to be satisfied anyhow.
          Well, this is the state of the world to-day. We are called to
          preach the Gospel. We preach it. There is but one Gospel. What is
          it? Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ; repentance of sin; baptism
          for the remission of sins; and the reception of the Holy Ghost by
          the laying on of hands. These are the doctrines Jesus taught, and
          that His Apostles taught.
          I feel to bear my testimony to these things. They are true. God
          is with this people. And we say to our nation--maintain the
          Constitution and we are satisfied. Give us the rights of that
          Constitution and we are satisfied. It is an instrument inspired
          by the power of God. Our forefathers were inspired when they
          framed it. Yet it is marvelous to reflect upon some principles
          that have been laid down--perhaps I ought not to allude to these
          things, but I am only expressing my own reflections--even by the
          supreme court of the United States. In effect it has said that we
          may think as we please, but must not act. I would ask, in the
          name of the Lord, was that all Thomas Jefferson, and others had
          in their minds when they framed the clause in reference to
          religious liberty? What about men acting? If it was only intended
          that men should think and not act, why not say so in the
          instrument? Why should it be stated that "Congress shall make no
          law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the
          free exercise thereof," if men were not to be allowed to act?
          Why, in the exercise of their religion, men must act: and it is
          straining points, it is overstepping the bounds of the
          Constitution to pass laws taking away the rights and privileges
          of any people because of their religion--because they happen to
          differ from their neighbors. Where will such a course land our
          government? I will tell you what it will do. It will rend the
          government in twain like unto a potter's vessel. It will lay the
          nation in the dust. It will overthrow the government. When they
          get through with the Mormons there will be somebody else to deal
          with. The Constitution is good enough for anybody. It is good
          enough for the Latter-day Saints. We have no principles but what
          are in accord with the Constitution of the United States and the
          laws of God. We are perfectly willing to trust ourselves and our
          interests in the hands of God, and to leave our nation in His
          hands also; for God will judge our nation; He will judge us; He
          will judge all the children of men and He will judge righteous
          judgment. What men sow they will reap. What measure they mete, it
          shall be measured to them again.
          I pray God to bless this nation. I pray God to give our
          legislators wisdom, that they may maintain the Constitutional
          principles of the government, the only government on the face of
          God's earth where the Lord could have established His Church and
          Kingdom. That we may be prepared to inherit eternal life is my
          prayer in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 / John
          Taylor, June 29, 1884
                             John Taylor, June 29, 1884
               President John Taylor next addressed the congregation. He
          said: It is some time since I have taken the privilege to speak
          to the Latter-day Saints in this place. I have been visiting our
          settlements in different parts of our Territory. There I
          frequently talk to the people. You have a great many here who are
          capable of teaching and instructing you, hence it is very seldom
          that I intrude myself upon you in this capacity. But I always
          feel pleasure in meeting with the Saints, in hearing my brethren
          unfold the principles of eternal truth, and in listening to the
          testimonies which they have to give concerning the Gospel of the
          Son of God.
          God has revealed unto us the principles of the Everlasting
          Gospel, and that Gospel brings life and immortality to light.
          Life and immortality can only be made known by the revelations of
          God, and people who do not believe in revelation cannot have any
          knowledge of life and immortality. It is through that principle
          alone that these things are or have been developed. We ourselves
          could have known nothing of God from the world in which we live,
          nor from the teachers thereof, because they do not even profess
          to be placed in communion with God, nor to have revelation from
          Him, and how could they speak of that they did not know or
          comprehend, or that which had not been communicated to them? It
          was impossible for them to do it. There have been many, very many
          good men in the world in the different ages when the Gospel has
          not existed, that have sought to do good to their fellow men, and
          to promote their welfare and happiness in a social, political and
          religious capacity, and have sought to introduce principles that
          would be calculated to elevate and exalt mankind in the scale of
          being. That is one thing, but the inspiration of the Almighty is
          another thing. Let me here mention a principle associated with
          these ideas that will explain somewhat the remarks and position
          of our brother, John Q. Cannon, who has addressed us this
          afternoon. He said he believed in the principles of the Gospel,
          but he did not have a testimony thereof--did not comprehend the
          thing, until he had obtained some further manifestation. That
          might be attributed to his youth and inexperience in the things
          of God; when he was brought face to face with the actualities of
          life, and came in conflict with the world he was under the
          necessity of applying to His Heavenly Father, who imparted unto
          him, through the Holy Ghost, that knowledge of which he speaks. I
          will mention a principle here. Outside of the Gospel, among all
          classes of men, among all nations, kindreds and peoples, of every
          color and clime everywhere, they have had given unto them a
          portion of the Spirit of God to profit withal. We are told this
          in the Scriptures, that God has given to every man a portion of
          His Spirit; but that is not the gift of the Holy Ghost. Where
          good men have followed the influence of that Spirit, it has led
          them to do good acts, to be charitable, to be kind, to be
          benevolent, to cultivate good morals and correct principles, to
          be governed by the principles of honor, truth, integrity and
          virtue, and these principles prevail to a greater or less extent
          among the nations of the earth and in this nation. This is the
          portion of the Spirit of God, as I said before, which was given
          to every man to profit withal. Why, those people that we talk
          about so much sometimes, the infidels, they have a portion of
          this Spirit, and many of them do many good acts. This may sound
          strange, I have no doubt, to many of you, but it is a fact
          nevertheless. He that doeth righteousness anywhere is righteous,
          and he that doeth evil is wicked.
          Now, what is the difference between that and the other principle?
          Jesus said when He was upon the earth: "It is expedient for you
          that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come
          unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you." What was
          the Comforter to do? "He shall teach you all things, and bring
          all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you."
          Now, the portion of the Spirit of God which is given to all men
          does not do this thing. It does not lead them unto all truth, for
          there is a great diversity of opinion among them. One may be a
          Methodists, another a Presbyterian, one a Quaker, another a
          Dunker, one a Catholic, another a Protestant, one a Christian,
          another a Mohammedan, one a Pagan, and another an infidel, and
          some one thing and some another. If men were in the possession of
          the gift of the Holy Ghost, it would lead them into all truth,
          and there would be one Lord, as the Scriptures say, and one faith
          and one baptism. Hence one of the old Prophets, clothed upon by
          the Spirit of the Living God, looked through the vista of future
          ages and contemplated events that should transpire in the
          latter-days, and said: "When the Lord shall bring again Zion, her
          watchmen shall see eye to eye." There will be no confusion there,
          no difference of sentiment there. They will place themselves
          under the guidance of the Great Eloheim, and under His
          inspiration they will be enabled to speak as they are moved upon
          by the Holy Ghost; and the Spirit of God, as it did formerly,
          will take of the things of God and shew them unto them. There is
          the distinction between the two principles.
          How can we expect that people will comprehend the things of God
          without the gift of the Holy Ghost? The Elders when they are sent
          forth to preach are instructed to preach nothing but the first
          principles of the Gospel--to preach nothing but repentance to
          this generation. Why? Because the people cannot comprehend
          further advanced principles. I remember talking with an eminent
          clergyman some few years ago. He was a very gentlemanly person,
          well disposed, intelligent, learned, etc. I talked the Gospel a
          little to him, but I found he could not comprehend it. Hence I
          commenced talking politics, history, geography, and some little
          principles of science. He understood these things perfectly, and
          we had no difficulty in comprehending each other; but he could
          not comprehend the Gospel. Was he a minister? Yes; but he had not
          the gift of the Holy Ghost, and it was useless for me to attempt
          to teach him. This is the way that I understand these things.
          Speaking of education, we have singular notions of education, and
          some people will say--and I have often said it myself--that
          Joseph Smith was quite an uneducated man. He was uneducated when
          he was a boy. He was brought up in the Green Mountains of
          Vermont, and he did not have any of the advantages of what we
          call an education. The Lord took him into His school, and he
          taught him things that I have seen puzzle many of the wisest
          scientists, profoundest thinkers, and the most learned men that I
          have met with in this world. Why? Because he was taught of God.
          What did those principles refer to? To the earth on which we
          live; to the elements of which it is composed; to the heavens
          above us; to the Gods that exist in the eternal worlds; to the
          principles by which the earth was organized, sustained, upheld
          and governed, and its relationship to other planets and systems;
          and speaking of governments, laws and principles, he possessed
          more intelligence than ninety-nine hundredths of the people of
          to-day. And he sought to teach others, and these things were
          introduced into the Temple of the Lord in Kirtland.
          I have heard the Prophet Joseph quote from the German Bible in
          support of our method of baptism by immersion, showing that the
          German Translation of the New Testament favored this idea, and
          that the word "Taufen" in that language means "to dip;" the same
          as our term immersion does; and that when John the Baptist was
          spoken of as John the Baptist it was "Johannes der Taufer," or
          John the Dipper, which is correct.
          I have heard him quote from the Hebrew Bible in support of a
          plurality of Gods, showing that the suffix "mem" in the word
          Eloheim or God, ought to be rendered in the plural and to read if
          literally translated, "and the Gods said let us, etc." Certain it
          is that in our present translation the word "us" or "let us"
          indicates that idea; for "us" is certainly in the plural and
          means more than one; and while our translation makes it say: "In
          the beginning God created the heaven and the earth," we are also
          told that "In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with
          God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with
          God. * * * And the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us," and
          further, that "All things were made by him," visible and
          invisible. We are further told that "There be that are called
          Gods, whether in heaven or on earth (as there be gods many, and
          lords many). But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom
          are all things.'
          If, as stated, Jesus was with the Father in the beginning, there
          certainly was more than one God--God the Father, and God the Son.
          Joseph Smith was reasoning upon this doctrine at the time that he
          made this quotation from the Hebrew Bible.
          We had a discussion in this Tabernacle some years ago between
          Apostle Orson Pratt and Dr. Newman--the latter a very prominent
          religionist from the east--a Methodist I think he was--what they
          call a doctor of divinity. The subject of discussion was--"Does
          the Bible sanction polygamy?" Mr., Newman was a well-educated
          man. So was Orson Pratt. Mr. Newman received his education in the
          schools of the day---somewhere in the United States, perhaps in
          the Methodist order; but I am not sufficiently acquainted with
          his history to say anything about this; I know very little about
          Mr. Newman. But I know where Orson Pratt got his information. And
          during this discussion some Hebrew points were debated, and the
          original Hebrew had to be referred to. Orson Pratt was quite as
          well acquainted with Hebrew as Mr. Newman was. Where did he get
          his knowledge? He received it in the Temple at Kirtland, Ohio. In
          speaking of that principle, the principle of education, to
          several leading men only yesterday, I think, I mentioned to them,
          in alluding to languages, that I was a little astonished to find
          that an old gentleman, about 80 years of age, whom I met a short
          time ago, was thoroughly conversant with the Hebrew language.
          "Where did you learn it?" said I. "Why," said he, "I learned it
          in the Temple at Kirtland;" and he informed me that he was now
          studying Arabic. I was rather amused at the idea of an old man 80
          years of age commencing to study Arabic. But to return. I have
          seldom met with a man that was more intelligent in the science of
          astronomy than Orson Pratt. Where did he get his information?
          From the same source. He studied mathematics all his days, and
          has written works that it is very difficult for some men to
          comprehend. Yet his works are on record.
          The religion of God is not a religion of ignorance. To whom are
          we indebted for the first principles contained in this book [the
          Bible]? To Moses. Who was he? A man of God. Who taught him those
          things? The Lord. By what principle? The principle of revelation;
          for he could not know them without. But had he not been taught in
          the schools of Egypt? Yes. And had he not obtained a knowledge of
          astronomy in those schools, too? Probably he had in part; but God
          taught him the leading, prominent points pertaining thereto. And
          who taught the Egyptians? Abraham taught them the science of
          astronomy, so we are informed, by late Egyptologists, and
          revealed unto them the principle concerning the motions of the
          heavenly bodies. Where did Abraham get his information from? In
          reading the history pertaining to this matter we are told that he
          says of himself that he was a follower of righteousness; that he
          sought after more righteousness; that he examined the history of
          his fathers and traced back his genealogy to the commencement of
          the world, and from before the commencement. Afterwards we are
          told in the same history that the Lord gave unto him a Urim and
          Thummim by which he was able to comprehend many things that
          others did not understand, and by which he obtained a knowledge
          of the heavenly bodies and of their motions. Moses was one of the
          first to illustrate this principle; but Abraham, who was before
          Moses, as also Joseph, understood it more clearly than Moses. And
          in those things wherein the world to-day are puzzled in regard to
          the Scriptures, and the six days that are there spoken of,
          Abraham speaks of those days as times, epochs, or ages, different
          and distinct from the days spoken of by Moses, and his record
          agrees precisely with many geological facts that have puzzled so
          many of this generation. Where did he obtain his knowledge? From
          God. Who controls the heavens and the earth? The Gods in the
          eternal worlds. Who has implanted certain principles in matter
          and in all creation? God has done it. All things are subject to
          these laws; and if men can place themselves under His guidance
          and find the way to approach the great Eloheim, they will know
          more in a very short time than all this world together know in
          all their lives and more than all the combined intelligence of
          the world, for God is the foundation of all wisdom, and the
          source of all intelligence and knowledge. We are told that
          Solomon was a wise man. Where did he get his wisdom? From God. He
          prayed to the Lord to give him wisdom, and the Lord told him that
          because he had sought wisdom he should have it, and He would also
          add unto him the rich treasures of the earth.
          I speak of these things for the information of the Latter-day
          Saints, and to disabuse your minds in regard to some of those
          principles that men sometimes talk about. The world possesses a
          certain amount of knowledge and intelligence, and it has
          progressed very rapidly of late years. We have had many
          discoveries in the arts and sciences and in the researches
          pertaining to geology, chemistry, etc., but many of their ideas
          and deductions are perfectly foolish and ridiculous. We have had
          the introduction of railroads, gas, steamboats, manifestations of
          the power and use of electricity, etc. Nevertheless, these
          principles always existed; it needed a development of them only
          to bring them into practical use; and there are thousands of
          other things not yet made known, yet to be developed, similar to
          those that have been discovered. In regard to these things, some
          of them are important, some of them are hot very important. The
          intelligence that the world boasts so much of, is not very
          profound when you come to test it by the principles of eternal
          In regard to the action of the Congress of the United States,
          which has been referred to, I want to say to you Saints, you need
          not trouble yourselves about it--you need not be the least
          concerned about any of these affairs. But they are acting
          unlawfully. That is the worse for them. When the Government
          begins to break down the safeguards of society, tear in pieces
          the Constitution of the United States, and trample under foot the
          liberties of man, they are only preparing the nation for an utter
          overthrow. There are plenty of elements of discord and
          disintegration all around. Congress should not be the first to
          exhibit examples of lawlessness and the violation of
          Constitutional rights. However, if they can stand it we can. We
          need not trouble our heads about any of these matters; there is
          an overruling Providence that controls the affairs of men and
          nations. So you can rest perfectly easy, you Latter-day Saints.
          We shall continue to do right. We will continue to sustain good
          principle. And what will you do? Just what Jesus said. We will do
          good for evil. What else? We will pray for them that despitefully
          use us and evilly treat us. Why? That we may be the children of
          our Heavenly Father, and act on the same principle that He does
          towards the human family. Does He act in that way? Yes. For he
          maketh His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth
          His rain on the just and on the unjust. He has introduced certain
          laws into the system of His government that regulates all things
          pertaining to these matters. He does not make those little
          divisions that the United States are trying to make to-day. He is
          more philantropic. He treats all alike, and places all on the
          same basis. Then, we will try and operate with Him and for Him,
          and in the interests of humanity, and in the protection of human
          rights, and we will try by every legal and constitutional method
          to maintain and sustain the principles of human rights in behalf
          of ourselves, in behalf of our children, and in behalf of
          thousands and tens of thousands of honorable men that live in
          these United States. We can very well afford to abide by the
          Constitution of the United States, and to sustain it, and we can
          afford to believe in the Bible and to obey its ordinances, and
          practice them, which they cannot do, and do not do. As I have
          said, we can afford to treat all men well, and to pray for those
          which despitefully use us and persecute us. Those who are trying
          to despoil us are objects more of sympathy in my feelings than
          anything else. I feel sorry when I see misrule abound anywhere,
          let it be in this nation or other nations. God would like to see
          peace, union and harmony. For that reason He has introduced the
          Gospel, and the principles of intelligence associated with it.
          Man is a dual being, he possesses a body and a spirit, and is
          connected with time and will exist in eternity, and it is for him
          to understand the nature of his organism, and his relation to the
          world in which he lives, and to God our Heavenly Father. What,
          then, will we do? Why, we will try and live for one another; we
          will try and be honest, honorable and virtuous, no matter what
          people can say about us. Concerning the lying about us, we need
          not trouble our heads. I do not think we are much better than
          Jesus was. The people in His day said He was possessed of devils,
          and worse than that, that He cast out devils by the power of
          Beelzebub, the prince of devils, and they killed Him saying He
          was an impostor and a deceiver, and because He said He was the
          Son of God, when they Knew He was not. And His theology was
          altogether at fault with the learned Rabbis of that day, as ours
          is with the learned Rabbis of this. We cannot help that. What we
          know, as Brother John Q. Cannon has said, we know for ourselves.
          We do not ask any odds of man. I don't. I know that God lives; I
          know that He has revealed the truth; I know this is the
          everlasting Gospel. I know that you Saints, if you are faithful,
          will secure to yourselves an inheritance in the celestial kingdom
          of God; but if you are not true to God and your religion you will
          not. If you go after the things of the world and depart from the
          principles of righteousness and trample upon the principles of
          honor, virtue, truth, or integrity, you will not enter that
          kingdom. It is not every one that saith, Lord, Lord, that shall
          enter the kingdom of heaven. What shall we do then? We will fear
          and love God and work righteousness, and send the Gospel to the
          nations of the earth, despite the follies, the wickedness and
          corruption of men; and we will proclaim the truth in these
          valleys and mountains, and Zion will spread, grow and increase.
          God will be for Israel, and we will sing, Hallelujah! the Lord
          God Omnipotent reigneth, and He will reign until He has put all
          enemies under His feet. Let this people fear God and work
          righteousness, and I ask no odds of earth or hell. God is at the
          helm. He will manage things according to the counsels of His
          will. He will say to this nation and to other nations, as He did
          to the proud waves of the ocean, "Hitherto shall thou come, but
          no further; and here shall thy proud waves be stayed." Our safety
          and our defense is in the Lord of Hosts. Let us put our trust in
          Him and obey His laws, and He will bless and sustain us in time
          and throughout the eternities that are to come; and we will try
          and benefit this nations all that we can, and all that they will
          let us, we cannot help it.
          God bless you and lead you in the paths of life. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 /
          Charles W. Penrose, July 26, 1884
                          Charles W. Penrose, July 26, 1884
                        REMARKS BY ELDER CHARLES W. PENROSE,
                    Delivered in The Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                          Sunday Afternoon, July 26, 1884.
                              Reported by John Irvine.
                                     FREEDOM OF
                                       OF THE
          I have been pleased in listening to the remarks of Brother Caine,
          who has just returned from Washington; glad to hear that his
          heart with ours is turned toward the truth, and that his desire,
          in common with ours, is to build up the Kingdom of God in the
          earth, and to contend for the rights which belong to us as
          American citizens. Some people seem to imagine because we have
          embraced a doctrine which is not popular in the world, because we
          have embraced a faith which is contrary to the generally received
          notions in regard to religion, that we ought to have no rights
          whatever as citizens of our common country. We do not look upon
          the matter in that light. We consider that we have the right
          under the Constitution of the United States to believe anything
          which seems right to us, and not only to believe it, but to carry
          it out in our practice, so far as we can do so without
          interfering with the rights of other people. The first amendment
          to the Constitution of the United States says: "Congress shall
          pass no law respecting an establishment of religion, or
          prohibiting the free exercise thereof." We understand that
          amendment as it is written. We do not wish to interpret it, or to
          give to it any meaning other than the plain language conveys. The
          language is, "That Congress shall pass no law respecting an
          establishment of religion." With the establishment of religion,
          then, Congress has nothing to do. Congress cannot set up a
          religion, nor can it pass any law respecting an establishment of
          religion--that is, to prevent its free exercise. There are some
          people in these latter times who interpret that amendment to mean
          that people may believe what they please, but it carries with it
          no freedom of practice. People may believe what seems right to
          them, but they must not carry it out if it happens to be contrary
          to the views of the great majority. Now, it appears to me that
          that is a very narrow interpretation of the meaning of that
          Amendment to the Constitution. It appears to us, as it must to
          the great bulk of the people of the country--the sovereign
          people--that without any constitutional amendment, or the passage
          of any law, people everywhere are of themselves free to believe.
          We do not think a law can interfere with belief, even if one were
          passed for the purpose of interfering with it. A man's belief
          cannot be controlled by any Act of Congress or of Parliament. No
          edict of a government or any other law-making body can interfere
          with my freedom of belief. When a proposition is placed before my
          mind, and I reflect upon it, and it appears to be correct, my
          mind receives it and I believe it. Sometimes persons believe in
          spite of themselves. Sometimes a man will believe a thing in
          spite of his own desires not to believe. Then this faith cannot
          be controlled by any person outside of the man himself, and
          sometimes he cannot control it himself. No edict or law, or any
          power of man on the earth can alter a man's belief, or prevent
          him from believing. A law can be enacted to prevent the carrying
          of that belief into practice; but it cannot interfere with
          belief, and it needs no amendment to the Constitution, no
          enactment of Congress or of any law-making body on earth, to
          protect a man in mere belief. Then it is clear to us that the
          intention was, that a man should have not only the right to
          believe, but that he should be protected in the free exercise of
          that belief. As the language states, Congress is not to pass any
          law respecting an establishment of religion, nor prohibit the
          free exercise thereof. What is the exercise of belief in
          religion? Why, it is certain acts men perform prompted by their
          belief, prompted by their religion. Suppose a man believes it is
          right to be baptized in water--buried in water for the remission
          of sins--how can he evidence his belief in that principle? He can
          only do it in the way specified by the Apostle James. He says:
          Show me thy faith without thy works and I will show thee my faith
          by my works." "But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without
          works is dead." That is the only way in which faith can be truly
          shown--by works. If I believe that baptism is right I evidence my
          belief by being baptized, and if I am not baptized it either
          shows that my faith is very weak or that it does not exist: that
          I have not the courage of my faith, or else that I do not believe
          at all.
          Now, we consider that we have a perfect right under the
          Constitution of our country to believe what seems right to us,
          and then to carry it out. "Well," some one may say, "do you think
          there should be no restriction to this? Are people to be
          protected in any kind of religion they may have? Suppose a man
          were to come here from India who believed it religious duty,
          under some circumstances, to strangle a man, would he have the
          right under the Constitution of the United States, to strangle?
          Again, there are people who believe it is right, in India, to
          burn a widow on the funeral pile, that her spirit may be sent to
          keep company with her husband in the other world. Would that
          person, or those persons have the right, under the constitution
          of the United States, to carry out their belief in this country?"
          We say no. We say that the Thug has no right here to practice his
          faith. We say the Suttee could not be established in this
          country. "Why not? You believe it is right under some
          circumstances for a man to have more wives than one, and that
          those who thus believe are protected by the Constitution in the
          practice of their religion. Why should not those who believe it
          right to strangle, or to burn widows, have the right to practice
          their religion under the Constitution of the United States?" The
          dividing line is very simple, as truth generally is. It is very
          easy to be drawn. It is to be drawn in consonance with the spirit
          of the Declaration of Independence, and with the principles that
          underline our government. In the Declaration of Independence it
          is laid down that there are certain rights that cannot be
          alienated, that are natural, that are inherent, that are not
          imparted by governments: they do not belong to politics, but they
          are inherent in the individual--the right to life, the right to
          liberty, the right to property, and the right to the pursuit of
          happiness. These rights are inalienable. They belong to every
          individual. They are not conferred by law. They belong to us.
          They are born in us. They belong to every person who breathes the
          breath of life. Then, an act of any individual or any government
          which infringes upon these natural rights is wrong in and of
          itself. If any individual interferes with the rights of his
          fellowmen he may be restrained by the secular law. The right to
          life, and to liberty, and to the pursuit of happiness, and to
          property belong to all individuals alike. One body of people
          professing one faith must not interfere with the rights of any
          other body of people professing another faith. The Latter-day
          Saints, as well as the Latter-day sinners, the Methodist as well
          as the Catholic, the Jew as well as the Gentile--all people alike
          in this great country must be protected equally in these natural
          rights which belong to them.
          Here, then, is where the line must be drawn. Anything that
          persons profess to do under the name of religion, which
          interferes with the rights of others is wrong, and the secular
          law may step in and protect the citizens and restrain or punish
          those people who attempt to do this under the plea of religion.
          If I do anything which interferes with the life, the liberty, the
          happiness, or the property of my neighbor, the law has a right to
          step in and protect my neighbor and restrain me. But if my
          religion--that which I believe to be true, and which I try to
          carry out as a part of my faith--does not interfere with human
          rights, does not infringe in any degree upon the rights of my
          fellow man, neither Congress, nor any other law-making power on
          the face of the earth, has the right to interfere with me under
          the Constitution of the country. I have a right to the exercise
          of my religion so long as it does not infringe upon the rights of
          other people. There is where we draw the line, and we think it is
          the right place. And we are standing up, not only for our own
          rights in this respect, but for the rights of all people upon the
          face of this land. As has been said by Brother Caine, this
          afternoon, in passing certain enactments which infringe upon our
          religious liberties, the congress of the United States is doing
          something that will come back upon the very individuals who have
          been trying to establish this principle or to enact these laws.
          Because, we may be the society or body aimed at to-day, and
          to-morrow another sect or party or body may be aimed at by the
          same enactments which are passed against us, and perhaps will
          hold good in both directions. It is a poor rule that only works
          one way. It may be found convenient do-day to single out the
          "Mormons," because they are unpopular, for special legislation;
          but in a little time some other religious body in this country
          may have the same inimical legislation applied to them, to bear
          down upon them with greater weight that it does upon us. You
          cannot violate a principle of truth without receiving very bad
          consequences. Those who attempt to do that will be sure to reap
          the fruit of their labors at some time or other. And when the
          Congress of the United States commences to move away the
          foundation stones of the system that the fathers of this nation
          built up, they are working on very dangerous ground, and the
          consequences thereof will not be confined to the few people
          against whom these measures are made. It is the duty of every
          patriot, of every man who loves his country, and of every woman
          who loves her country, to do their part in preventing the passage
          of such enactments as these, and in vindicating the principles
          and doctrines which enter into the Constitution of our beloved
          country. So we are standing up not only for our own rights, but
          for the rights of others, and this is none of the duties enjoined
          upon us by our Heavenly Father.
          We have been brought from the various parts of the earth into
          these mountain valleys that we may establish a system of religion
          which has been revealed from heaven, which our Heavenly Father
          has committed to us. We have not taken this religion from any of
          the sacred books that are in existence; we have not concocted
          this system from the Bible, or from any other religious work; but
          it has been revealed to us in our own day and time. God has
          broken the silence of ages. That same God that spoke to the
          prophets of old, whose record we have in the Old Testament, and
          who sent His Son Jesus Christ in the meridian of time to die for
          the sins of the world--that same God that inspired the Apostles
          of Jesus Christ in their great works has Himself spoken from
          heaven in our own day, and angels have come down from the courts
          of glory with a message of life and salvation for the inhabitants
          of the earth. This Church, this system, this organization to
          which we belong has not been set up by the wisdom of man, but has
          been set up by the power of God, by the command of the Almighty,
          and has been sustained by him up to the present time. All the
          efforts which are made to break it down will only tend to build
          it up. Every law the United States may pass with the intent to
          disintegrate this work, to divide the people, to crush the power
          that exists in the midst of the Latter-day Saints, will only tend
          to consolidate the people, to bind them closer together, to make
          their faith more intense, their convictions more certain, and to
          make their determination more persistent. That will be the
          effect. God is working with this people, and has worked with them
          from the beginning. And this, as we have heard this afternoon, is
          not a mere matter of faith. We have seen so many proofs of an
          over-ruling power, and manifestations of special providence, as a
          people and as individuals, in answer to our prayers that we know
          that God lives, that God answers prayer, that God Almighty is
          with the Latter-day Saints while they keep His commandments and
          do his will, and that He will over-rule for good all the evil
          which is intended against us.
          This work is established for the purpose of bringing about His
          designs in regard to this earth upon which we live. The earth is
          the Lord's and the fullness thereof. The cattle on a thousand
          hills are His. The silver and the gold belong to Him, and the
          life of all mankind is in His hands. He is Lord over all, blessed
          forever, and it is His right to rule and regulate and control all
          things on the face of this globe. Jesus Christ His beloved Son
          has been here. He dwelt on the earth for a time and performed the
          work allotted to Him, by which he obtained all power and sits at
          the right hand of the Father; and the tie is coming when He will
          stand on the earth, establish His government and dominion,
          extending it from pole to pole and from shore to shore, and the
          kingdoms of this world will become the kingdom of our God and His
          Christ; not in some figurative, mystical, spiritual sense, but
          really and truly as a matter of fact. The Savior, as foretold by
          the prophets, came upon the earth literally and truly. He was
          hung upon the cross, and His spirit left His body. He was laid in
          the tomb, but He was raised again from the dead, not in a
          spiritual sense, or some mythical sense, but really and truly His
          body was raised from the dead. In that body He appeared to His
          disciples, and went up from their gaze, saying that in like
          manner he would descend again. And His promises are that when he
          shall come the second time, it shall not be as the babe of
          Bethlehem, despised and rejected, a man of sorrows and acquainted
          with grief; nor to be persecuted by His own, but that He shall
          come in the clouds of heaven in power and great glory to sit upon
          the throne of His Father David and reign and rule from the rivers
          to the end of the earth, so that all nations, kindreds tongues
          and people shall serve and obey Him. Now, we look for the coming
          of our Lord Jesus Christ, and we expect it just as much as when
          the sun goes down we expect it to rise above the hill tops in the
          morning. And when He comes we expect it will be Himself--Jesus of
          Nazareth, our Elder Brother, the first born of God in the spirit
          world, the Only Begotten of God in the flesh. We expect that He
          will come and reign over the earth as King of kings and Lord of
          lords, and we expect that all kingdoms, all governments, and all
          institutions that men have set up will be broken down, and as
          Nebuchadnezzar saw them in the vision which Daniel interpreted,
          they will become as the chaff of the summer threshing floor, and
          be swept away, and no place found for them upon the face of the
          whole earth; because the Kingdom of god and of His Christ will
          prevail everywhere, and it will cover the earth. For it is the
          kingdom that was spoken of by the Prophets, and we are told that
          "the kingdom and the dominion and the greatness of the kingdom
          under the whole heavens"--that is over all the earth, is it
          not?--shall be His kingdom and shall "be given into the hands of
          the people of the Saints of the Most High, and their kingdom
          shall be an everlasting kingdom." Now, we expect the fulfillment
          of all these things, and when they come to pass they will occur
          just as they are written, like other prophecies have been
          accomplished. When Isaiah prophesied that "a virgin should
          conceive and bear a son" and that they should "call His name
          Immanuel," the prophet meant what he said, and it came to pass;
          and all the predictions in regard to the second coming, as it is
          called, the second advent of the Messiah, and the establishment
          of God's Kingdom and government on the earth, will be fulfilled
          exactly as the prophets have predicted. There is no need to
          mystify, nor to spiritualize, nor to explain them, they will come
          to pass word for word; for "heaven and earth may pass away, but
          not one jot or tittle of the word of God shall pass away; it
          shall all be fulfilled.
          Now, this Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to which we
          belong is established by the Almighty for the express purpose of
          opening up the way for the accomplishment of this great work. In
          this Church is the germ of that kingdom that Daniel saw. The
          Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, set up by the power
          of God, by the authority of the Most High, is exactly the same
          Church that Jesus Christ built up--that is, the same in all its
          essential principles; the same organization, the same kind of
          officers, the same doctrines, the same in its spirit, the same in
          its ordinances, the same in the power that attends those
          ordinances, doctrines, principles and commandments as were
          revealed to the ancient Church. It is governed just exactly in
          the same way that the church which Jesus Christ established when
          he was upon the earth was governed. Every principle which was
          taught by the ancient Apostles in their time is taught by the
          latter-day Apostles in their time. And the Apostles in our day
          have the same authority or Priesthood, as it is called, that the
          Apostles had in their time whom Jesus ordained; because those
          that held the keys of that apostleship in the earth in former
          times have come down to the earth, literally and truly, and
          ordained men to the same authority and apostleship which they
          held while living in the flesh. That is how the apostleship has
          been restored. That authority exists in this Church, and it will
          never be taken away again. That which is called by the Latter-day
          Saints the Priesthood, is the authority given of God to men to
          act in His name, so that what they do by His authority and in the
          way that He has appointed on the earth shall be acknowledged in
          heaven--that which they seal on earth shall be sealed in heaven
          and that which they loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. It
          must be done as God directs, according to the revelations of His
          will. But this authority, this right, this power from God exists
          in this Church, as it existed in the ancient Church, because it
          has been actually restored by the very men who held the keys of
          it. And really, after all, it is that that the world is fighting.
          All these plans and schemes, all that legislation and these
          influences that are brought to bear on this Church, upon this
          system called by the world "Mormonism" is brought to bear in
          consequence of the restoration of that power and that authority.
          It is the authority of the kingdom. It is here to stay. It is
          here to prevail. First it will preach the Gospel of the kingdom
          as a witness to all nations; it will then gather together the
          elect of God from the four quarters of the earth; it will build
          temples to the name of the Most High God in which men can
          administer in ordinances that pertain to the salvation of the
          living and the redemption of the dead. It will accomplish all
          that has been predicted by the prophets concerning the Latter-day
          Now, this is the kind of work in which we are engaged. It has
          been introduced by the Almighty to bring about all those grand
          events that we read about in the writings of the old prophets
          that have not yet been fulfilled; there are a great many things
          contained in the Old Testament that people pay little attention
          to now-a-days. They have an idea of things coming to pass in some
          spiritual fashion, or some mythical, mystical kind of way; they
          don't know exactly how; and it is the business of certain men who
          are hired to preach the Gospel, to make mysterious explanations
          of passages of Scripture, which they manage to cover up, and
          succeed in confusing the people more than before the expounding
          was attempted. Nevertheless, all those predictions that refer to
          events that are to take place in the earth in the latter days
          will all come to pass as they are written, and this work, this
          Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, this thing called
          "Mormonism" has been introduced by the Almighty for the express
          purpose of bringing these things out; that is why it is
          universally opposed. All these different sects of modern
          Christendom are like the sects of heathendom, without
          communication from the eternal world. They receive no revelation
          from God. Their ministers have no authority except that which
          they obtain from their congregations. Many of them do not pretend
          to have any other, when you press them closely. They preach those
          tenets which the people believe and which are acceptable to the
          people--each minister of each sect preaching that which the
          members desire to hear. All these different sects contain many
          good people who are trying to do right, trying to serve God, and
          a great many others that are hypocrites. But as sects, as
          societies, as churches, they are not authorized of God. You can
          trace them all to their origin, and find that that origin is
          human in its nature. They have not come from God, they have come
          from men, some of them good men, perhaps. Men have met together
          and formulated creeds and organized societies, and these
          societies have grown and spread abroad, and after a while have
          become orthodox in the earth. At first they were persecuted and
          opposed, but as they grew in wealth as well as in numbers they
          made a name and a noise and became a power in the earth;, and are
          recognized and understood as orthodox sects. But there is not one
          of them ordained of God. They are not set up by divine command,
          and their minsters have not been divinely authorized to preach
          the Gospel, nor to administer in the things of the Kingdom. Here
          may be and no doubt are men among them preaching that which they
          believe to be true. But a man's belief is not authority. A man
          may believe a thing to be right, but that does not give him
          authority to represent God in that matter. A man may believe it
          is right to sprinkle a babe and call that baptism. But even
          supposing it is right--through it is not--the fact that he
          believes it is right would not give him the authority to
          administer, because he does it "in the name of the Father and of
          the Son and of the Holy Ghost," and he has no right to take these
          names upon his lips in vain, and he does take them upon his lips
          in vain unless he has been authorized to use these names. No man
          has any more right to use the name of Deity in the administration
          of an ordinance, without authority, than a common citizen,
          without authority, has the right to use the name and pretend to
          be the representative of the Government of the United States, or
          of Great Britain, or of Germany; not a bit. But men seem to think
          because God does not interfere, that they have e aright to do a
          great many things that he never commanded, and do them in the
          name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.
          Now, as I said just now, the authority to administer in the
          things of God's Church has been restored in the way that I have
          told you. That is why we claim the right in this Church to
          administer these ordinances, and that is why we lay down the
          broad assertion that outside of this Church there is no authority
          in the world to administer in the name of the Lord. If there is
          such authority, let those who claim to have it, show their
          credentials and prove where they obtained their authority from.
          Now, in this Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints not only
          is this authority restored, and those same doctrines, principles
          and ordinances which were had in the early Christian Church also
          restored, but accompanying these are the same spirit and gifts
          and manifestations and power that existed in the ancient Church.
          And here is one of the great proofs of the truth of that which I
          have advanced to you: Wherever the servants of God connected with
          this Church and holding this authority go into the world--and
          they go out without purse or scrip and administer: there are no
          salaried preachers in this Church--wherever they go and proclaim
          this Gospel they tell the people that if they will believe on the
          Lord Jesus Christ, and repent of their sins, and be baptized for
          the remission of sins, they shall receive the Holy Ghost, through
          the laying on of hands; and that this Holy Ghost that shall be
          given to them is the same spirit exactly in its manifestations,
          in its power, that the Apostles conferred upon the people by the
          laying on of hands in the early Christian Church, and that rested
          down upon the old prophets by which they wrote the things called
          scripture: the same spirit that Jesus Christ had without measure;
          that spirit that He gave to His Apostles when He breathed upon
          them and said: "Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me,
          even so send I you * * Receive ye the Holy Ghost;" that same
          spirit that was upon them on the day of Pentecost; that spirit
          which manifested itself to the Church in Corinth by the gift of
          tongues, interpretations, visions, dreams, healings and miracles,
          and all those signs which Jesus Christ promised to them that
          believed. These are manifest in the midst of the Latter-day
          Saints; this spirit, this power, is revealed to them and
          communicated to them. Not merely to the Presidency and the Twelve
          Apostles, and other leading Elders, but to each individual, to
          every person who believes and repents and is baptized, and upon
          whom the hands are laid of those having authority from God to
          administer in His name. Now, these men might claim this authority
          and be impostors; for the world has been full of impostors, and
          there are plenty of them now-a-days--religious impostors; these
          men might claim to have this authority, but they could not
          communicate this power, the Holy Ghost. But wherever people
          receive this doctrine, and obey it in the spirit of it their
          testimony is, in every land, in every corner of the earth,
          wherever the servants of God have penetrated, that they have
          received for themselves by revelation, by the Holy Ghost from on
          high, a testimony that this work is the work of God, and that
          these men are His servants. That is why they are here. That is
          why they are gathered in these valleys of the mountains. They are
          here because they have received the truth, and a knowledge of it,
          because they have received the ordinances of the Church and
          obtained the power that accompanies them; because God has
          witnessed to them individually, that He has spoken from the
          heavens, that He has re-established His Church, and that the time
          has come for the building up of the latter-day Kingdom and the
          establishment of God's dominion in all the earth, and they are
          called to help in the work; not only the Apostles and Priesthood,
          but all the members of the Church are called to take a part in
          the work. And here we are, in these mountain valleys, bound
          together as a band of brethren--not by the power of man, not by
          the coercion of man, not by oppression, not by arbitrary rules,
          but by the spirit and power of the Eternal God, sent down from on
          high, which has been shed abroad universally upon the members of
          the Church. This is our testimony to the world.
          We know that God lives. We know that there are "special
          providences" of God. We know that this work will prevail. We know
          that all these adverse plans and schemes of men, either from
          individuals or from nations, will only tend to roll on this work,
          and bring about the purposes of the Almighty in the midst of the
          children of men. That is why we have so much confidence. It is
          not because we think so much of ourselves. We do not profess to
          be a great people, except in our unity--in our industry,
          temperance and sobriety, for we are a temperate, sober and
          thrifty people. Of course there are exceptions to this. There are
          men and women among us, like there are in all denominations, who
          will not hearken to good advice and do right. Notwithstanding the
          promise made by every man and woman that comes into this Church
          to be holy and righteous, true and faithful, and to avoid sin,
          there are some who will not be bound by their solemn obligations,
          nor abide their covenants with one another. And those who will
          break promises with each other are very likely to break promises
          made with God Almighty. But as a body we are a united, thrifty,
          temperate and sober people, and we try to do that which we
          consider to be right. We may make mistakes like other people; but
          as a body of people we are on the straight and narrow way, the
          one path to the celestial city, and we desire to turn neither to
          the right hand nor to the left. Those who walked in that path in
          ancient times were told by Jesus Christ that they would be
          opposed by the world, that the world would hate them. "If ye were
          of the world the world would love his own: but because ye are not
          of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore
          the world hateth you." We have been called out of the world in
          the same way. We are called with a special calling, and we have a
          special mission to perform. There is not a soul in this Church
          but has a mission. We are called out of the world to be the
          people of the Lord, to be Saints of the Most High, to consecrate
          and dedicate ourselves body and soul, with all that we have--the
          fruits of the labors of our hands, the fruits of the efforts of
          our minds--to the work in which we are engaged, the work of the
          Great God in the earth, He using us as instruments. This is the
          kind of people we are. This is the kind of people the world are
          opposed to.
          Now in regard to that feature of our faith that they make so much
          fuss about--a right we claim under the Constitution of the United
          States, and against which laws have been passed in Congress,
          framed to prevent our carrying out the commandments of God in
          regard to our family relations--that feature seems to upset the
          equilibrium of our "Christian" friends. What is the matter? "Why,
          you believe in men having more wives than one." Yes, some men,
          good men. We don't believe that a bad man should have a wife at
          all. None but the good deserve the fair. And we believe that a
          righteous men, virtuous men, men that would not improperly use
          any power or faculty of their nature, ought to be permitted to
          have wives and raise up a holy posterity and train their children
          in the ways of virtue, honesty and uprightness. We do not believe
          it is right for men to give way to their animal passions. We do
          not believe it is right to do so either in plural or single
          marriage or outside of it. We believe marriage to be an holy
          estate, ordained of God, with which Congress has not the right to
          interfere. It is a religious matter with us. It is a holy
          ordinance established by the Eternal Father. We claim that the
          women of the Church are the daughters of God, and God has some
          right as to their disposition. We do not believe it is right for
          a man to pick and choose where he likes, and do as he pleases
          independent of God Almighty. We read in the Old Testament that
          "When man began to multiply on the face of the earth, and
          daughters were born unto them, that the sons of God saw the
          daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives of
          all which they chose." And it is stated that the iniquity of man
          was great, and God brought a flood on the earth. Now, to
          understand that correctly we have to know what kind of position
          those persons were in, and why they were called the "Sons of
          God." Those men were in the same position as the Latter-day
          Saints. They were heirs to the Priesthood. They were the sons of
          God. They had obeyed the holy covenants. They had received the
          word of the Lord. They were consecrated to the Almighty. But they
          went outside of their covenants and their engagement with the
          Lord, and took wives of the daughters of men that were not in the
          covenant, and thus transgressed the law of God. The law of God in
          relation to this has been the same in all ages, and has been
          given to this people--that the sons of Israel shall wed the
          daughters of Israel, and shall not go out to wed with the
          stranger. These men did that, and God was displeased, as He is
          to-day with Latter-day Saints, who are called out of the world to
          be His servants, to be holy unto the Lord, to be clean because
          they bear the vessels of the Lord, when they go outside and wed
          with the stranger. The law is that they shall not do this, but
          shall wed under the everlasting covenant and have their wives
          given them of the Lord and sealed to them by an holy ordinances
          revealed from heaven, in a holy place prepared for the
          purpose--sealed for time and all eternity, so that death shall
          not be able to break the bond of union; that though death may
          separate them for a little season when they come up in the
          resurrection, her will be no need to marry or give in marriage,
          because they were married on the earth by authority of God
          Almighty for time and all eternity, just like Adam and Eve were,
          for God gave Eve to Adam before death came into the world. We
          believe that good men, who have demonstrated their fitness for
          the responsibilities of holy wedlock, may, under the direction of
          the Lord, obtain more wives than one, may have them sealed to
          them by the same covenant and by the same bond, to be their wives
          in the eternal world; and they expect when they depart hence to
          go where Abraham is--to that place that is called Abraham's
          bosom. There they will be in congenial company. They will verify
          the words of Jesus, who said, "Many shall come from the east and
          from the west, and from the north and from the south, and shall
          sit down with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in the Kingdom of God;"
          while others who supposed themselves to be the children of the
          Kingdom" will be "thrust out." And I am afraid that a great many
          of our good Christian friends who are so terribly shocked about
          this feature of our faith, when they get to the door and look in
          and see Abraham and Sarah and Hagar and Keturah, and those
          concubines given of the Lord to Abraham--when they see them in
          the eternal kingdom they will want to turn away and go to more
          congenial company, which they are at perfect liberty to do. If
          Abraham was on the earth to-day, these same good people would put
          him in the penitentiary, and yet they call Abraham "the father of
          the faithful, the friend of God," and want to go to his bosom
          when they die! If Jacob were here with his four wives, through
          whom he "did build the house of Israel," the names of whose
          twelve sons are to be inscribed upon the gates of the holy city,
          the New Jerusalem, that is to come down from God out of heaven
          like a bride adorned for her husband--I say if Jacob were on the
          earth to-day, they would put him in jail! Well, this is the
          consistency of some people who profess to believe in the Bible.
          Men come here to try and sell the Latter-day Saints the Bible.
          Why, bless your souls, there are no people on the earth who
          believe as much in the Bible as the "Mormons." We believe in the
          Old and New Testament, King James' translation. It was through
          our belief in that record that most of us became Latter-day
          Saints; for, being familiar with the Bible, when the servants of
          God came with the Gospel we found it was the same as laid down in
          that sacred record, and that induced us to embrace the faith that
          is commonly called "Mormonism."
          Well, now, this feature of our faith to which I have alluded--I
          have not the time to comment upon it in all its bearings, and a
          great many people would not understand it if I did--is a divine
          institution. Let me bear my testimony to this congregation, as I
          would like to bear it to all the world, that it is a pure and
          holy institution; not to bring women into bondage, but to place
          them in that position for which they were created--to give them
          the opportunity to become honored wives and mothers, so that
          there might be "no margin left for lust to prey upon," no field
          for the tricks of the seducer and the adulterer, the corrupt and
          the ungodly. God Almighty has established this system. It is a
          religious ordinance established by authority from God, by
          revelation from on high and administered by religious ceremonies.
          It belongs to this Priesthood and to none other. We are not
          seeking to extend it to the world nor to introduce it to other
          people. It is confined to the Priesthood. It is "a law unto my
          Holy Priesthood," saith the Lord, and there are bounds
          limitations and regulations over which we cannot pass. And it is
          not for the wicked.
          Now, then, in this sense, looking upon this as a religious
          institution, as a sacrament, as an ordinance of our faith, as a
          part of our creed, as an establishment of our religion, we claim
          the right to the free exercise thereof before God and before man.
          If anybody can prove to us that it is wrong, that it is impure,
          that its effects are bad for this world or the world to come,
          that would be another thing altogether, and would have its effect
          with us, because as members of this Church we are in for truth,
          for salvation, for the glory of our God. We want to attain to the
          celestial kingdom. We want to fit ourselves for the society of
          the holy ones, the society of the best that ever lived upon the
          face of the earth, and for that we are Latter-day Saints. If men
          could prove to us that we are wrong, then they might have some
          chance of converting us. But when they trample upon our
          inalienable rights, upon our constitutional privileges, upon our
          religious liberty, why, then, we feel like resisting. But we are
          not going to fight. We naturally repel the assaults against us,
          but it is in the way of defence. Our motto, like that of the
          volunteers in London, is, "Defence, not Defiance." We defend our
          rights and privileges against all attacks, and in doing so we are
          standing up for the rights of all the people of this great
          country. For if you tear away the underpinning from the structure
          the fathers established, the whole institution may come down with
          a crash. I tell you we have got to watch for these things, and
          this is part of our mission. We must preach the Gospel and build
          up the Kingdom of God, and contend for our constitutional rights,
          because they are given of the Lord. The Constitution of our
          country was revealed of God. God has made known to us that He
          inspired the framers of the Constitution, and caused that
          instrument to be brought forth, so that all people might be
          protected in their rights. We claim the same rights as other
          folks, and no more. We have received this principle of our faith
          in connection with many more, and we claim that if we do not
          infringe upon the rights of others we should have liberty in the
          exercise thereof. If a man was permitted to force some woman to
          be his wife, or to interfere with his neighbor's wife, or
          infringe upon the rights of another man, then the secular law
          might step in and interfere. But while the woman is free-no woman
          among us is coerced, no woman is placed in bondage, every woman
          is at liberty to marry or not marry--while that is the case we do
          not think that the law has any right to interfere; and we intend
          to contend for our rights inch by inch, lawfully, respectfully;
          but in this we are as firm as these everlasting mountains that
          are not moved by the blasts of winter or the heat of summer. This
          is the work of God, and woe! be unto us if we do not preach the
          Gospel! Woe! be unto us if we relinquish or attempt to sell or
          barter or compromise one of the eternal principles that have been
          sent down from the heavens and which we have to carry to the ends
          of the earth! But if we are faithful to our mission and calling,
          if we stand firm and true, and regarded God rather than man, God
          shall fight our battles. Everything that seems to be against us
          will be turned for our good. The clouds that overshadow us from
          time to time will part and roll away, and the glorious sun of
          prosperity will shine upon us. If we are true and faithful God
          Almighty will overrule all things for our good, and bring us off
          more than conquerors. And every nation and people and institution
          and society that fight against Zion shall become like the dream
          of a night vision--it will pass away; and those men that fight
          against this work will be, as the prophet said, "Even as when a
          hungry man dreameth, and, behold, he eateth; but he awaketh and
          his soul is empty: or as when a thirsty man dreameth, and,
          behold, he drinketh; but he awaketh, and, behold, he is faint,
          and his soul hath appetite." So it will be with all who fight
          against this work and try to overthrow it. Not because we are
          mightier than anybody else, not because we are so numerous, not
          because we are learned, not because we are wealthy, but because
          God Almighty has established this work, and He will cause it to
          prevail. I bear my testimony that I know this to be true.
          May God bless the Latter-day Saints and unite their hearts that
          they may be one. May they be able to keep those precious things
          in earthen vessels that God Almighty has committed to them. If
          they have found the Pearl of Great Price may they value it above
          all earthly things, and endure every opposition and every
          influence brought to bear against them and come off triumphant;
          and may God bless those who have gathered with us this afternoon,
          and give them a knowledge of the truth of this work, that they
          may enjoy its blessings with us and be saved in the Kingdom of
          God, for Christ's sake. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 /
          Franklin D. Richards, May 17, 1884
                         Franklin D. Richards, May 17, 1884
                        DISCOURSE BY APOSTLE F. D. RICHARDS,
             Delivered in the Tabernacle, Logan, Cache County, Saturday
                        (Quarterly Conference) May 17, 1884.
                             (Reported by John Irvine.)
          I scarcely know how to find words to express the feelings which
          occupy my bosom at this time. This is one of those extraordinary
          occasions on which the Priesthood of the Church of the last
          dispensation are gathered together; a great thanksgiving day for
          God's people. It is an assemblage of the authorities of the
          Church from the Stakes of Zion. They have come together to
          rejoice, to give God thanks, to praise and to magnify His name
          because another great and peculiar blessing is bestowed upon His
          people--that of erecting, completing and furnishing another house
          unto the Lord, and of dedicating it unto Him.
          The Temples, the houses of our God, when acceptably dedicated,
          become to us the gates of heaven. They are esteemed most holy
          unto the Lord of all places upon the earth; therein the faithful
          approach nearest unto God, and obtain the greatest fellowship and
          inspiration of His Holy Spirit. There the righteous perform
          ordinances that reach into the heavens and take effect upon their
          dead whom they love, whom they have loved, and who have gone
          before--to whom they owe a debt of gratitude, for their
          parentage--the authors of their being and education in the flesh;
          who have gone unto that other state of spiritual existence. It is
          fitting on such occasions that the Presidents and Bishops, with
          their Counselors, should come from the four quarters of the
          earth, if the knowledge of the Gospel and the organization of the
          Stakes of Zion had extended so far.
          The dedication of the Temple this morning awakens anew in our
          souls a heavenly, family feeling. It arouses in us an interest
          that reaches not only over the extent of the work here upon the
          earth, but into the regions of eternal life in the spirit worlds.
          It inspires a feeling that we are part of them and that they are
          part of us, knowing that we cannot be made perfect without them,
          nor they without us. And it becomes like the opening up of the
          gate of heaven unto us, that we may view by the eye of faith, and
          by the light of the Holy Spirit, that portion of the family of
          God with whom we have before associated, and with whom we expect
          to be hereafter associated in greater and more glorious labors in
          His eternal kingdom here upon the earth; when sickness, sorrow,
          sin and death shall be cleansed from the face of it, and when
          life, salvation, peace and faith shall, as the fruits of the
          Spirit, be poured out upon all flesh.
          While in the Temple with the chief authorities of the Church and
          Kingdom of God--which has now extended its operations and its
          labors to every continent, almost every mainland, and many
          islands of the sea--the reflection came forcibly to my mind that
          there are represented in our midst this day people from either
          Indies, from the Antipodes, and from the various nations of the
          earth; not less than twenty-five or thirty nationalities,
          languages, tongues and peoples are represented among us. The
          impression was irresistible that the fellowship of the heavens
          was near us, that our Savior the Lord Jesus Christ was near, and
          that His Spirit was largely in the midst of the congregation;
          that the spirit of our ancient fathers, Adam, Noah and Abraham,
          the father of the faithful, who the Revelations inform us has
          entered into his exaltation and sits upon his throne, were all
          earnestly interested in our offering and dedication of this
          Temple to the Most High God. The impression was constantly with
          me that we were in the presence of the Prophet Joseph, his
          brother Hyrum, and others who had gone before, such as Brother
          David W. Patten, as well as Brigham, Heber, Willard, and others
          of the Apostles and worthies--that their spirits must have been
          present with us hallowing our reflections, imparting their
          peaceful influence and truthful inspiration to our souls. Our
          spirits were awakened to a profound sense of thankfulness that we
          had been enabled to take another so important a step of
          advancement in the triumphant progress of the great Latter-day
          We are sensible that the heavenly powers are moved on these
          occasions, and we know that the Saints on earth are. Indeed there
          is no theme that engages the human mind, and that reaches into
          the innermost recesses thereof as does Temple building, and the
          ideas associated with that work and the purposes for which they
          are used. It is this that animates the bosoms of the righteous
          and brings forth sentiments and emotions from the fountains of
          their souls, inspiring them with fresh resolutions to faith and
          good works. I thank the living God and praise His holy name that
          I have lived to see His work progress thus far upon the earth. I
          am thankful for the privilege of meeting with so many of my
          brethren in the Priesthood.
          It is a pleasing thought, a glorious truth, that while we are
          here together in our persons, we are also united in spirit, we
          are firmly united, so far as we know, in our belief in the
          principles of the Gospel, and in all the labors assigned to us
          severally to perform. I do not recollect to have ever read in the
          Bible history of God's people on the earth, when His servants and
          His people wrought together, with greater unanimity of faith or
          with a more generous use of their means than now in all the
          labors and duties that devolve upon them. The favorable
          conditions attending us as a people, the peace and plenty there
          is in the land--the sweet fellowship of the Spirit, the glorious
          promises and prospects for the future, all draw from the fountain
          of our souls our best emotions, our strongest faith, our
          brightest hopes, our most glorious anticipations.
          I have reflected upon the days of ancient Israel, and wondered at
          their decadence, when they had arrived at the height of glory and
          eminence. Solomon, their king, stood vastly above all the kings
          of the surrounding nations; he sat safely on his throne, for God
          sustained him there, until he departed from His counsels and
          commandments. Oh, what a terrible thing to happen to God's
          people, or to any of His servants! What was it that turned the
          scale and started the decay of that nation? It was simply because
          their ruler put forth his hand and took to himself wives of other
          nations, that God had commanded him not to. This was the
          beginning of the great mischief that came upon Israel, and one
          mischief led to another; they persuaded him to attend the
          sacrifices and worship of their idolatrous gods, as the Lord told
          him they would do, until the family of Israel had come to follow
          the example of their king--marrying strange women and worshipping
          strange gods, which brought them down to that terrible
          degradation that their temple, which was built in wisdom,
          strength and beauty most glorious, and which was acknowledged at
          its dedication by the presence and glory of God, had become
          polluted and degraded to a den of thieves. The Lord told them
          that their doom was sealed, and that in regard to the Temple,
          there should not be left one stone upon another to tell where it
          stood. O, what terrible consequences have followed through the
          ages until to-day! Even until now, that nation is afflicted and
          distressed. While it is well with us here, and we are enjoying
          all these blessings, it is but right, I think, that we should ask
          our Father in heaven that the day of their affliction and sorrow
          may soon come to an end, and that they may come, as we have come,
          with obedient hearts to help build up Zion and Jerusalem.
          Our work is at present but small. It is but the beginning, the
          germination of the wonderfully strange work that is to affect the
          whole habitable globe, and not only those that are on the earth
          now, but all that have dwelt here or that shall come to dwell
          upon it, until the earth shall be made anew, and all things
          thereon pronounced new again from God. Although Israel had
          attained to great eminence and glory in the earth, yet they were
          brought into subjection to other nations because of their
          transgressions, and though Christ came to be their deliverer,
          they received Him not--and their Temple was not restored to those
          glorious and exalted purposes and uses for which it was intended;
          then what have been the consequences? The Savior told them what
          would come to pass. "Behold," said he, "I send unto you prophets,
          and wise men and scribes, and some of them ye shall kill and
          crucify; and some of them shall ye scourge in your synagogues:
          that upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the
          earth, etc." What a terrible consequence! If they could have but
          hearkened to His word, walked in the way of the Lord; continued
          in its holy course, and believed in the Savior when He came, then
          they might have been engaged in this work of redeeming their dead
          back to the beginning of the world, and there would have been a
          mighty work done by that generation for their dead, as well as
          for themselves; but it remains for those recent men and women now
          upon the earth and that shall come upon the earth to perform this
          My brethren and sisters, there is before us that which draws upon
          our faith and upon our prospective ambition and knowledge of
          Gospel labor clear back to the days of the ancients. The Lord has
          given us intimations in regard to all these things, and He will
          continue to reveal all things necessary to be made known by which
          His great purposes shall be brought about. Great and glorious is
          His work! The work of the resurrection is not far off. I am fully
          persuaded of this, and have reflected sometimes concerning it,
          with an earnest desire. Never in all my ministry have I talked
          much about the resurrection; but the Lord has manifested some
          things concerning it, and I would like to allude to them.
          It is a popular sentiment among professing Christians generally,
          and it is believed also by many of the Saints--because of a
          certain saying the Savior made use of to the Sadducees on a
          particular occasion--that, in neither of the resurrections is
          there to be any marrying or giving in marriage. This is a
          mistaken idea. We are nowhere informed that the Savior ever said
          any such thing or entertained any such doctrine. He taught the
          doctrine of the resurrection, saying that He was the resurrection
          and the life, and that the day will come when all they that are
          in their graves shall hear His voice and shall come forth. It was
          because He taught this doctrine that the Sadducees sought to
          entangle and confuse Him concerning this principle by bringing up
          the case of the woman who married a man and he died without any
          children, then because he died childless she married his brother,
          which was according to the law of Moses, he also died without
          children, and so on, each of the brothers marrying her, until the
          seven brothers had her to wife, and last of all the woman died
          These Sadducees did not believe in any resurrection, and they
          thought to be very crafty with the Savior, so they put the
          question squarely to Him: "Therefore in the resurrection, whose
          wife shall she be of the seven? for they all had her." They
          evidently thought they had caught the Savior then; but He replied
          to them saying: "Ye do err, not knowing the Scriptures, nor the
          power of God." Now, who was he talking to? He was speaking to
          those Sadducees who denied there being any resurrection; who
          lived contemporaneously with the seven men and this woman who had
          lived and died among them. He was talking to a race of people to
          whom John the Baptist had come, and many had received his
          testimony; but these had not. He was talking to a people who
          claimed to be of the House of Israel, to whom He (Jesus) had come
          in fulfillment of the testimony of John the Baptist.
          There had been sent among this people, whom he was now talking
          to, prophets who had foretold His coming and the coming of John
          the Baptist. He had sent His Twelve Apostles among all their
          cities, all of whom had testified to the coming of the Just One
          unto all that people, but they had rejected those testimonies,
          had killed the Prophets, stoned those who had been sent unto
          them, and were now ready to slay Him.
          It was to this class of people, who were living under these
          circumstances, that He makes the answer saying, "For in the
          resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but
          are as the angels of God in heaven." Luke the Evangelist, stating
          this case in his 20th chapter, says: "The children of this world
          marry and are given in marriage, but they which shall be
          accounted worthy to obtain that world, and the resurrection from
          the dead, neither marry, nor are given in marriage; neither can
          they die any more; for they are equal unto the angels; and are
          the children of God, being the children of the resurrection." If
          we refer to the glorious vision which was shown to Joseph and
          Sidney on the 16th of February, 1832, as recorded in the 76th
          section of the Doctrine and Covenants, last edition, we shall
          find the promised condition of these people, that the glory of
          the telestial is one, even as the glory of the stars is one, for
          as one star differs from another star in glory, even so differs
          one from another in the telestial world; for these are they who
          are of Paul, Apollos and Cephas, some of Christ--Moses, Elias and
          others--but received not the Gospel, the testimony of Jesus,
          neither the prophets nor the everlasting covenant, but are liars,
          sorcerers, adulterers and whoremongers, who shall not be redeemed
          from the devil until the last resurrection, when Christ the Lamb
          shall have finished His work, having subdued all unto Him. These
          receive not of His fullness, but of the Holy Spirit through the
          ministration of angels appointed to administer for them. Had they
          hearkened to the Prophets, the Apostles, the words of the Savior,
          and received the everlasting covenant, they would have been made
          heirs of God and joint heirs with our Lord Jesus Christ, and
          would have been made heirs of the celestial world, with power to
          increase eternally, being Gods, even the sons of God, but now
          that they would not receive the Gospel, the Prophets, nor the
          everlasting covenant which they might have received, they can
          only become as the angels in heaven, who in that world neither
          marry, nor are given in marriage, but are equal to the angels in
          These are not they who inherit the celestial world, nor those who
          attain to the terrestrial, but they who suffer the judgment of
          God in the flesh. These are they who come forth in the last
          resurrection; they who attain to the resurrection in that world,
          and are neither married nor are given in marriage, just as the
          revelations of God prescribe and show forth.
          There is nothing in all this which says or intimates that those
          who come forth in either of the other resurrections shall not
          have the blessing in their resurrection and in their world,
          whether Celestial or Terrestrial, of being married and given in
          marriage. Let me ask what is to become of that portion of the
          human family that have gone down into their graves in past ages
          without having arrived at the age of puberty, or without having
          lived to years of accountability? What is to become of them? Are
          they not to be given the blessings of the New and Everlasting
          Covenant, to increase, multiply and attain to endless lives, and
          eternal increase in the covenant of Abraham? Undoubtedly, in the
          resurrection when they shall have regained their tabernacles, if
          they render the required obedience to the holy law of God. And
          who are the others that come forth in the second resurrection?
          Stop. Let me distinguish. The first resurrection was in the days
          of Jesus. Those who were resurrected with Him appeared many of
          them, we are told, in the streets of the holy city. That was the
          first resurrection. The second resurrection is the resurrection
          of the just, when Jesus shall come again in the clouds of heaven
          with power and great glory, when they who sleep in Jesus will
          come with Him. Then will He bring the City of Enoch that has gone
          away in Terrestrial glory ever since it went to the heavens. Then
          will those children who have died in Christ--for they are
          redeemed in Christ from before the foundation of the world--come
          forth. Then, in the next resurrection, we are told, will come
          forth the honorable men of the earth who have lived according to
          the light they had. In this next resurrection will come forth the
          multitudes of the nations that have never had the Gospel--the
          heathen nations. They are candidates for the next resurrection,
          and when they come forth upon the earth, those of them who prove
          themselves worthy will they not have the opportunity to attain to
          all the blessings of the new and everlasting covenant? If they
          are not to be married and given in marriage the Lord has not been
          pleased to tell us so. I anticipate that in that glorious day the
          work of performing all the ordinances and endowments for those
          who have not attained unto these privileges and blessings in the
          flesh, either by themselves or by proxy, will have that
          privilege, and the work will be carried on. That blessed epoch
          seems to dawn upon our view--that glorious period when the
          righteous will come forth, and while the wicked will sleep on
          another thousand years.
          Let me remind you of another interesting feature in this
          allegory, and that is this: The Savior tells us that the
          terrestrial glory, or kingdom, is likened unto the glory of the
          moon, which is not of the brightness of the sun, neither of the
          smallness nor dimness of the stars. But those others who have no
          part in marrying or giving of marriage in the last resurrection,
          they become as stars, and even differ from each other in glory;
          but those in the terrestrial kingdom are those who will come
          forth at the time when Enoch comes back, when the Savior comes
          again to dwell upon the earth; when Father Abraham will be there
          with the Urim and Thummim to look after every son and daughter of
          his race; to make known all things that are needed to be known,
          and with them enter into their promised inheritance. Thus the
          people of God will go forward, They will go forward, like unto
          the new moon, increasing in knowledge and brightness and glory,
          until they come to a fullness of celestial glory. During the
          Millennium multitudes of people who have not herd the Gospel will
          hear and receive it and go forward into this glory, while those
          who will not go forward to a fullness will go back to that lesser
          glory which is likened unto the stars of heaven, for as the
          Prophet Isaiah says, "There shall be no more thence an infant of
          days, nor an old man that hath not filled his days, for the child
          shall die an hundred years old; but the sinner being an hundred
          years old shall be accursed.
          I did not think when I arose that I should be led to speak in
          this strain; but the fact is, upon these occasions the glories of
          the other worlds open up before us, and we cannot help thinking
          of them, and dwelling upon them unless we quench the Spirit. 
          But says one, I thought that all marriages were to be performed
          in mortality? In regard to that suggestion I would ask, How was
          it that Father Adam and Mother Eve were married while they were
          immortal? And if they could be married as immortal beings, why
          cannot their children just as well be? It will doubtless occupy
          the whole of that sabbath of rest the whole thousand years, and
          perhaps a period after, to do the work necessary for all the vast
          myriads of Adam's children, so that they may be placed in a
          position to be judged according to men in the flesh, or according
          to the deeds done in the body.
          Brethren and sisters, I rejoice exceedingly with you in this
          glorious Gospel. If there is anything on the earth that can
          satisfy the human soul in its desires for excellence, virtue,
          exaltation and greatness, it certainly is this Gospel of the
          kingdom. If there is anything in the world that can satisfy the
          hungry soul for knowledge, it is the revelations of the Lord
          Jesus Christ, which open up continually line upon line, and
          precept upon precept; here a little and there a little; indeed
          there is nothing else can satisfy the longing of the human soul.
          This will lead to the same blessing and glory which the Prophet
          Joseph told us Enoch had attained unto. He taught us that he and
          his city had attained in his day to a terrestrial glory, that
          they were enjoying that glory still. They attained unto the power
          of translation, that they might take their bodies and their city
          with them. The resurrection was not until Christ came and became
          the first fruits of them that slept.
          This view of the subject brings me to think and to speak a word
          in reference to the three Nephites. They wanted to tarry until
          Jesus came, and that they might He took them into the heavens and
          endowed them with the power of translation, probably in one of
          Enoch's temples, and brought them back to the earth. Thus they
          received power to live until the coming of the Son of Man. I
          believe He took them to Enoch's city and gave them their
          endowments there. I expect that in the city of Enoch there are
          temples; and when Enoch and his people come back, they will come
          back with their city, their temples, blessings and powers. The
          north country will yield up its multitude, with the Apostle John,
          who is looking after them. They also will come to Zion and
          receive their crowns at the hands of their brethren of Ephraim.
          There will also be nations here on the earth that have not
          received the Gospel, but who will receive it, and thus the work
          of God will go on in all its phases, for the living and for the
          It is a good thing to take a glimpse once in a while into, and
          contemplate the glories of the future. A few years ago, when the
          wolf stood at our doors, when we had hardly enough of the
          necessaries of life to keep body and spirit together, we used to
          sing the song--"There's a good time coming." Behold! that time
          has come. This is one of those good times that we are celebrating
          to-day. Let us rejoice in the Lord our God. I think that every
          honest soul that is pure before the Lord can lift up his heart,
          and praise His holy name, that he has lived to see this day. The
          Lord help us that we may give to Him our best efforts in
          forwarding His work here on earth. I rejoice with all my soul and
          ask the blessing of the Lord to rest upon the Presidency of the
          Church, upon the Apostles, upon the Seventies, High Priests and
          all the quorums; also, that the Bishops may be filled with the
          spirit of justice, equity and truth. I also feel to bless you, my
          brethren and sisters, that the favor of God may be multiplied
          upon your persons, your families, your homes, your flocks and
          your herds, your possessions and your hopes. That we may prove
          faithful and attain to heaven's proffered blessings is my desire,
          in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 / George
          Q. Cannon, June 22, 1884
                        REMARKS BY PRESIDENT GEORGE Q. CANNON.
                    Delivered in the Tabernacle, Salt Lake City,
                           Sunday Afternoon, June 22, 1884
                              Reported by John Irvine.
          I have listened with much interest--as no doubt all of you
          have--to the remarks which have been made by Brother Young. It is
          very interesting to hear respecting the people in distant
          settlements, their faith, their growth, and their development in
          things spiritual and temporal. It is very encouraging to hear
          that the Latter-day Saints in distant places, far removed from
          this city, are alive to their duties, and to the performance of
          those obligations which rest upon them. I well remember the
          time--and doubtless very many of you here to-day also remember
          it--when it was thought that if we increased to any extent, and
          the people got beyond the influence of their leaders, who are
          supposed to be so astute and cunning as to manage them and all
          their affairs, that what is called Mormonism would soon dissolve,
          and either fall a prey to internal dissensions or break to pieces
          through some other cause. The Elders of this Church from the
          beginning have testified unto the world that if men and women
          would receive the doctrines of which they were the bearers, in
          the spirit in which they were taught, they should have a
          testimony for themselves respecting their truth, and that by
          means of that testimony they would be enabled to stand and bear
          up against all pressure and all assaults that might be made or
          brought to bear upon them.
          Mormonism, as it is termed, has been upon its trial from the
          beginning. The inhabitants of the earth are testing it, and we
          who are connected with it are obtaining knowledge concerning its
          adaptability to meet all the wants and requirements of all
          circumstances in which we may be placed.
          The great duty that devolves upon us, my brethren and sisters, is
          to live that religion which we profess. I confess to you to-day
          that if I am ever assailed with fears or with doubts respecting
          the result of the machinations of the wicked against us, and of
          legislation hostile to us; if I am ever troubled, I say, with any
          doubts or fears, they have their origin in myself, my own
          inability, or, perhaps, the inability of my brethren and sisters,
          and their carelessness in carrying out the commands of God. For
          no other reason, am I ever troubled with fear respecting us as a
          people, or the results of the plots that are devised against us.
          I know, as well as I know I stand here, that the Latter-day
          Saints will emerge triumphant from every difficulty in which they
          may be involved, from every trial to which they may be subjected,
          if they will only live the religion they profess, and carry out
          its principles strictly in their lives. I know this, I say, as
          well as I know that I am here to-day, and am speaking to you. If
          we should be unfaithful, if we should neglect to serve our God
          with that faithfulness and zeal which He requires of us, them we
          may expect to be scourged, we may expect to have difficulty and
          trouble, we may expect that those who oppose us will gain, as
          they at least think, victories over us. God will use them to whip
          us into line, to bring us to a sense of our duties, to stir us up
          to diligence and faithfulness in keeping His commandments. He
          will use them in this direction and for these purposes. It,
          therefore, is a matter of great importance to us that we should
          be attentive to our duties; that every man in this Church who has
          a family should put his family into such a condition, as far as
          he can, that God will approve of them; that every Teacher in this
          Church whose duty it is to visit the houses of the Latter-day
          Saints and give them instructions concerning their duties, to see
          that there is no difficulty existing, no dissensions, no
          quarrelling--that these men should attend strictly to their
          duties; and that every officer in the Church in his place and
          station should be prompt and zealous in looking after the affairs
          of the Latter-day Saints; that no drunkenness is permitted, that
          no blasphemies are permitted, that no Sabbath breaking is
          permitted that no speaking evil and bearing false witness are
          permitted, that fornications and adulteries are not permitted,
          and that those who are guilty of any of these offenses are
          strictly dealt with, that there shall be no causes of this
          character existing among us as a people to bring forth the
          displeasure of our God. I feel myself that this is the time for
          us to be alive to our duties. We have no other defence than this.
          Our numbers are insufficient; our wealth, and our strength, and
          our worldly influence are entirely insufficient to give us
          victory. We can only hope to prevail by reason of the strength
          which our God will give unto us, by reason of the protection
          which He will extend unto us, and we cannot hope to succeed upon
          any other principle or by any other means. It is this that has
          given us victory in the past; it is this that will give us the
          victory in the future; it is this that will make us strong and
          mighty in the earth.
          We are working out a great revolution, it may be said. To-day we
          are disproving most effectually that remark that has become so
          trite among men, that God, or Providence, is on the side of the
          strongest artillery, and upon the side of the greatest numbers.
          We are disproving this. Our case illustrates most perfectly that
          when God is upon the side of a people--they may be feeble, they
          may be poor, they may be despised and be exceedingly
          unpopular--they will most assuredly gain triumphs and victories
          over all who oppose them. And I am thankful this day, in the
          presence of our God, I am thankful this day in your presence, my
          brethren and sisters, that God has, in His infinite mercy and
          kindness, spoken once more from the heavens and revealed Himself
          to men. Persecution! Who cares for it? Who fears it? What is
          there connected with it to make us tremble or to weaken us in the
          least degree if we are possessed of the knowledge which God has
          restored, that He lives, that He is the same to-day that He was
          1800 years ago, that He was in the days of the Prophets and
          Patriarchs--the same kind, beneficent, merciful, all-powerful
          Being? This knowledge God has restored, and we rejoice in its
          possession. We would that all men would listen unto His voice and
          be entreated of Him. We would that all men would seek unto Him
          and obtain for themselves this knowledge He is so willing to
          bestow. Our persecutions would be joyous to us--if they may be
          called persecutions--if such results as these could be wrought
          out, or would be the results that would attend these
          persecutions. While Brother Brigham was speaking about
          persecution, the thought passed through my mind that that which
          we term persecution is only the discipline necessary for our
          development. There is a great destiny in store for this people,
          and they never can attain unto it unless they pass through just
          such scenes as they have passed through in the past, and such
          scenes as they doubtless will have to pass through of a more
          trying character in the future. This is the discipline that is
          necessary to purify us, to prepare us in every respect for the
          fulfilling of that high destiny that awaits us. For just as sure
          as God lives, so sure will the people called Latter-day Saints
          become a great and mighty power in the earth. A people possessed
          of their qualities must, in the very nature of things, accomplish
          mighty results. A people united, a people believing in one
          doctrine, a people temperate and frugal, virtuous, industrious
          and enterprising, possessing every quality of greatness, they
          must, in the very nature of things, if they are true to
          themselves and to their religion, achieve distinction in the
          earth, and God designs it for us. But we must put ourselves in a
          way to be taught of Him. We must put away evil far from us. We
          must cleanse ourselves from every thing that is offensive in His
          sight. We must live the religion that we profess--make it
          practically a part of our every day lives. This is incumbent upon
          us individually as well as collectively. A religion of profession
          amounts to nothing. A religion to be used only on Sundays is
          valueless. We want a religion that will go with us into our
          fields, into our workshops, into our habitations, and into our
          every day dealings one with another. This is the kind of religion
          we want, and this, I am happy to say, is the kind of religion we
          have got. If we will live it as we should do, we shall witness
          these results to a greater extent than we have yet witnessed
          them. God has tried us in many respects in the past. There are
          additional ordeals yet before us. We have been told from the
          beginning that the time would come when not only would the people
          of a county be opposed to us, but the people of a state would
          oppose us; and as we increased opposition would increase, until
          the Government of the United States would pronounce against us.
          It is a remarkable fact--not known, probably, or if known not
          believed by the Congress of the United States, or by the members
          of Congress, who pass inimical measures against us--that Joseph
          Smith predicted years and years ago, when it was as improbable as
          anything that is yet unfulfilled, that the time would come when
          our nation through its Congress, would do the very thing that is
          now being done, that we have witnessed this last week for
          instance, in the passage by the Senate of the Edmunds-Hoar bill.
          Little do they think that by such actions as these they are
          strengthening the faith of the Latter-day Saints, because they
          see in these actions that they are fulfilling the words of a man
          whom they believe to be Prophet of God. And not only were we told
          that this would be the case, but that the time would come when
          the fear of the Kingdom of God would be so great that other
          nations would array themselves in like manner against the
          Latter-day Saints.
          So, Latter-day Saints, if any of you think that we will
          immediately have a time when persecution, trial and difficulty
          will cease, and we will have smooth sailing, you had better be
          undeceived, for that is not in the programme; it is not designed
          of God that we should have any such future before us. The time
          will come, but it will be when Satan is bound, when the Kingdom
          of God will prevail on the earth, and peace, righteousness and
          truth will have sway; but until that time we may expect to have
          troubled seas, tempests, times of trial and difficulty, to test
          us and train us, and to fit and prepare the earth, as we have
          been told this afternoon for the coming of our Lord and Savior
          Jesus Christ. We are only testing our strength in these things.
          The Edmunds law became a law upwards of two years ago. What has
          it amounted to? Why, we have had an opportunity of showing our
          strength, our union. Now, this bill that has been passed by the
          Senate--suppose it should become a law. What then? Will it have
          the effect that is expected of those who have framed it? If we do
          our duty, certainly not. If we live our religion, certainly not.
          It will fall harmless at our feet. There is no law that can be
          devised by human wisdom that can reach this case--that is, as
          those who devise such measures desire. It is an impossibility. No
          mobocratic scheme ever injured us. When the Governor of the State
          of Missouri issued his exterminating order against the Latter-day
          Saints, declaring that if they did not leave the State they
          should be exterminated, he thought, doubtless, that he was
          dealing this system a deadly blow. We were broken up into
          fragments, it might be said, in the depths of inclement weather.
          The people were compelled to flee for their lives. What was the
          result? Why, in a short time the system became a greater power
          than before. When we were driven out by violence, by bloodshed,
          from the State of Illinois, and compelled to launch forth into
          the wilderness, for a while it was thought that we were certainly
          placed in a position where we should be ruined. What has been the
          result? It has head the effect of causing us to spread until
          throughout these mountain valleys the Latter-day Saints are
          numbered by thousands. Every measure that has been taken against
          us since then, designed for our overthrow, has only taught us our
          strength. It has compelled us to go to the fountain of all
          strength, to God our Eternal Father. Feeling our own inability,
          our own incapacity, our own weakness, we have been compelled to
          go to a higher power. We have invoked the heavens. From the
          habitations of the Saints throughout these valleys the prayer of
          faith has ascended unto the God of heaven imploring Him to
          protect and preserve the people in their
          innocence--notwithstanding the malignant falsehoods that have
          been circulated against them--imploring Him to defend them, and
          to save them from the hands of those who would destroy them. And
          abundantly have these prayers been answered. We have had
          deliverances wrought out that have been most extraordinary. Men
          have looked upon this system and said, "What crafty leaders, what
          astute leadership; you have got a very cunning lot of men as
          Mormon leaders"--giving the glory to men, as though men could
          preserve the people in this matter, ignoring the God of heaven,
          denying His power, and asserting that God had done nothing, but
          that it is all attributable to the management of the leaders in
          holding the people together, as though it had all been done by
          the strength of their impostures. 
          Now, these deliverances which have been wrought out in the past
          will be repeated. These trials are necessary. It is just as
          necessary that we should have these things to contend with as
          that we live. I do not dread their effects nearly as much as I do
          something else. Hostile legislation and opposition of this
          character have but one tendency as a rule, that is, to drive us
          closer together, to make the cause a common one, to cause us to
          feel united. You have seen a cooper putting hoops on a barrel;
          driving them down has the effect of tightening the staves and
          making the barrel strong. So it is with these measures. The more
          they are driven the tighter it brings the people together,
          solidifies them, makes them one, and it gives them a
          consciousness of strength; because when they emerge from these
          trials victorious, they feel better able to cope with greater
          difficulties and greater oppression when they are brought to bear
          upon them. And they are necessary, as I have said, for our
          development. But let us have ease, let us prosper in worldly
          things, let the world smile upon us and bid us welcome and treat
          us as they treat those whom they love; let the world do this, and
          how long should we be united? Why, the influence would be towards
          disintegration. Worldly influence would creep in. That is more to
          be dreaded than persecution. Prosperity is far more to be dreaded
          under circumstances such as we are placed in--what I mean by
          prosperity, I mean worldly prosperity, worldly sympathy, worldly
          favor; these are more to be dreaded than the disfavor of the
          world and the tyranny that may be brought to bear upon us because
          of our being obnoxious to them.
          Therefore, I look upon these measures and other measures that are
          proposed as only a part of the programme. Shall we have measures
          that will be hostile to us? Yes. We may make up our minds for
          this; but we may also rest assured that that God who has
          delivered us so frequently in the past will still continue to
          deliver us, and we shall not fall a prey, if we do our duty, to
          our enemies. He will preserve us. He will make our feet fast in
          these mountains. He will throw around us His arm of power, and
          when the worst comes to the worst He will interpose in our behalf
          in a miraculous manner to free us and place us upon a sure
          foundation. In fact, it is all miraculous. The existence of this
          people is a miracle. The growth of this people is a miracle. The
          attitude of this people is a miracle. It is all contrary to what
          are called natural causes, and therefore miraculous, contrary to
          the laws that pass current among men respecting peoples,
          communities and individuals, such as we are, and such as all are.
          My brethren and sisters: We have every reason to rejoice so long
          as we are doing right. It is this that we have to console us. If
          we were vicious the world would not war against us. It is not
          against vice that the war is being made. Man may say so, but God
          knows it is not so. Our enemies know that it is not so. They know
          that it is not vice in us that provokes this warfare. Where is
          vice to be found in our cities? Nowhere. It finds no favor with
          us. We cherish virtue, the virtues of humanity, every thing that
          is God-like, and we frown down everything that is vicious and
          unholy. If we had our way there would not be an adulterer in
          these mountains. If we had our way there would not be a seducer
          in these mountains. Every woman would either be a virtuous maiden
          or a married woman, or a widow. We would take care of family
          virtue, preserve it as we would life; for it is more precious
          than life itself, and should be valued as such, and every man
          that would do anything to degrade a woman ought to be and will be
          damned. If we had our way there would be no drunkenness in all
          these mountains, no lying in these mountains; the name of God
          would not be taken in vain, no profane words would be heard. We
          would suppress these things, and in their place cherish virtue,
          industry, integrity, honesty and every virtue that men love and
          that God loves. No, it is not because we are vicious; it is not
          because we love vice; it is not because we are the most corrupt
          and depraved of mankind that we have enemies. Why, the drunkard,
          the gambler, the whoremonger, the villains of various dyes, who
          fight against us, would welcome us if we were like them. But we
          are not. We have come out of the world and are determined to
          serve God according to the dictates of our conscience, and
          according to the revelations that He has given us.
          The warfare will go on as it has done in the past, only with this
          difference: that in our age and to us God has made promises, that
          this kingdom, that is, the Holy Priesthood that He has restored
          to the earth and the authority that He once had among men; the
          promise is to us that it shall not be taken from the earth again,
          but that this kingdom shall roll forth, continue to grow and
          increase, until it will encircle within its pale all the virtuous
          and honest of the nations of the earth. This is the destiny of
          this work; not to exclude any one, but to include every one; and
          as it gains strength, influence and power, it will continue to
          aggregate to itself all that is good in mankind. The day will
          come when our own nation will be convulsed with intestine strife.
          The civil war that is past is not the only war that will take
          place in this land. It is a matter of regret to think it should
          be otherwise. But God has spoken. There will be intestine strife
          in our own nation. Already we can see, as it were, the seeds of
          this germinating and sprouting in the midst of neighborhoods and
          of communities, and it will break out after a while, and men will
          flee to Zion. The prediction was made 52 years ago by Joseph
          Smith, that the time would come when those that would not take up
          their sword to fight against their neighbor in this blessed land,
          (the most favored of any land under the heavens, so favored in
          government, so favored in climate, so favored in every element of
          wealth, and in all its surroundings) they would be compelled to
          come here for protection, for we will be the only people that
          will be at peace on the continent. That prediction was made 52
          years ago. It will be fulfilled just as sure as God has spoken
          My brethren and sisters, I am happy in this reflection: that
          notwithstanding the threatening aspect of affairs--I speak now in
          relation to legislation--there is a spirit of peace, calmness and
          serenity, prevailing throughout our settlements and throughout
          our families, so far as I have been able to discern, that has
          shown we are undisturbed, that we are conscious of the fact that
          God is with us. Continue to cherish this spirit, let it rest upon
          you, impart it to your children, extend it as far as you can; and
          may the blessing of our Father and God rest down abundantly upon
          you and upon all the honest everywhere throughout the wide earth,
          is my prayer, in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 / Joseph
          F. Smith, July 18, 1884
                           Joseph F. Smith, July 18, 1884
          In the Ogden Tabernacle, Saturday Afternoon, July 18, 1884, being
                  Quarterly Conference of the Weber Stake of Zion.
                             (Reported by John Irvine.)
                                       TIME OF
                          NEED--KEEP THE SABBATH DAY HOLY.
           F. Smith
          I am pleased to see so many of the Saints assembled here on this
          the opening day of conference, and I certainly hope that those
          who have taken the trouble to come to conference on the first day
          may be amply repaid for so doing.
           F. Smith
          We ought I think to be very willing to perform any duty that may
          be required of us as Latter-day Saints, on the Sabbath day, and
          at other times appointed for the gathering of the Saints. We
          should come together for the purpose of being spiritually
          strengthened and encouraged, that our faith may be increased, and
          that we may learn the duties devolving upon us as members of the
          Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
           F. Smith
               We are not nearly as united as we ought to be. If the people
          of Huntsville, whose Bishop has been reporting them, had been
          united as Saints should be, and as I trust they will be some day,
          the probability is that they would have been much better off
          financially than they now are.
           F. Smith
          Co-operation is a principle that President Young was very much
          concerned about, and that he endeavored, with his brethren, to
          impress upon the minds of the people throughout the land. Under
          his administration our co-operative institutions were
          established, and by his efforts, many of the people, especially
          in the southern part of Utah and in Arizona, became united
          together in organizations that were called "the United Order."
          The object was co-operation, that the principles of union in
          labor as well as in faith might be developed to its fullest
          extent in the midst of the Saints. We all believe in being united
          in faith. We all profess to believe that there is one God, one
          faith, one baptism, and that we should be one people; but
          notwithstanding we profess this, our individuality stands out
          very prominent. Many of us cannot see just the same as our
          brethren see, and we cannot possibly be wholly united with them.
          We do not expect--I do not expect at all events--that the people
          will come to see eye to eye all at once. I believe this to be a
          work of great importance, and one that will not be accomplished
          without years of experience, and perhaps we will have to suffer
          many chastisements and reproofs before we are brought to a unity
          of the faith. Yet we ought to try to see eye to eye as far as
          possible. Our being united does not destroy our individuality at
          all. We can be just as strong in our individuality when united in
          regard to the purposes and designs of the Almighty, as we can
          possibly be when in opposition to these purposes and designs, and
          to our brethren who are united in regard to the things of God.
          Indeed I think it evinces a stronger characteristic of
          individuality for men and women to bring themselves into harmony
          and union with the purposes of the Almighty than to be divided
          against them or separate from them. Of one thing I am certain,
          and that is, that we ought to seek to become acquainted with the
          principles of economy. We ought to use the best wisdom, judgment
          and understanding we can obtain in our temporal as well as in our
          spiritual affairs and concerns. You take a community like the
          community of Huntsville, or any community of Saints in a Ward,
          isolated, perhaps, in a little valley, and if there is union and
          co-operation in their midst, thousands and tens of thousands of
          dollars can be saved in their own pockets; while, on the other
          hand, if individuals are left to do as they please, thousands of
          dollars will go out of their pockets into the pockets of
          speculators and others. I know that to be true. As Bishop Hammond
          has very truly said, there is in Huntsville from half a dozen to
          a dozen mowing machines, when two or three would be ample to do
          all the work which is required to be done in that place with
          these machines. This being the case, as stated by the Bishop,
          then all the thousands of dollars which have been expended upon
          these superabundant machines and other implements, have gone out
          of the possession of the people into the pockets of outsiders and
          strangers; whereas if they had been contented with having just
          enough, they could have devoted the balance of their means in
          other directions, or have placed it in such a position as that it
          would bring them interest, instead of being operated and used by
          their enemies, perhaps, for their political or religious
          destruction. There is no reason why the principle of unity should
          not operate in the midst of the Latter-day Saints, except that we
          are too selfish. It should not be "every man for himself;" but we
          are many of us covetous. We desire in our hearts to have
          everything our neighbor has, whether we need it or not. In order
          to be like our neighbor; in order that we may associate with him,
          and that our daughters may associate with his daughters, and our
          sons with his sons, we must have as fine a house, as costly
          furniture, as many horses, as many plows, reaping and mowing
          machines, and headers, as many cows, as many sheep, and as many
          luxuries, whether we can afford it as well as our neighbor can or
          not. Now, all this is extremely foolish. It is wrong. We see a
          vehicle which costs $200, more or less, and we do not absolutely
          need it--only we must have it to be like our neighbor--would it
          not be better to put that money in the bank, or lend it to
          somebody in business, and thus while benefiting others with our
          capital, secure interest upon it for ourselves. Certainly it
          would. In that way the money would be a help to you; whereas if
          you purchase the wagon you do not require, in addition to paying
          an exorbitant price in the purchase which is generally the case.
          The wagon will very likely be left exposed to the sun and wet--as
          wagons too frequently are left by great many of the people--and
          soon becomes useless. Some men think nothing of buying a very
          nice carriage, spring wagon, or other wagon of some kind, and
          treating it in this way until it is ruined and worthless. The
          same with valuable agricultural machinery; too much of it is
          bought and used for two or three days, or two or three weeks in a
          season, or for a whole month in a year--say a reaper, or a mower,
          and where is it the rest of the year? Out doors in the sun and
          rain, and before it can be used next season, it must be taken to
          a black-smith's shop for repairs; for through exposure it has
          become rusty, the wood season checked every joint loosened. This
          is the way some people use their agricultural implements whereas
          with very little trouble they might be stored away in the shed,
          kept dry and secure, and ready for service when the next season
          came round. But the better way of all is--in a small community
          where every man knows his neighbor, and where all are on
          neighborly terms, to consult together, and to form into
          co-operative bodies for the purpose of transacting the business
          necessary to be transacted outside of their little community. By
          thus consulting together, and using the combined wisdom of the
          community as to the number of reapers, mowers, etc., they will
          need to do the work of the community, a great deal might be
          saved. One man need not own the machinery. They could all join
          together, each contributing a certain sum towards its purchase,
          which they could use to mutual advantage, and see that it is well
          housed and taken care of when out of use. In this way a community
          could save thousands of dollars year after year, and I know the
          principle is a correct one for the people of Zion. It is a
          principle of economy. Money is something which a man ought to be
          able to take care of, and use wisely if he has it; if he does not
          know how to take care of it, it will escape from his pockets, it
          will take the wings of the morning and flee away.
           F. Smith
          I think we ought to be united in all these things, in the
          purchase of machinery and of the vast amount of merchandise that
          we consume, that we do not manufacture or produce among
          ourselves. The very foundation of all real prosperity is home
          industry and home manufacture. This lies at the foundation of the
          prosperity of every permanently prosperous community. It is the
          source of wealth. I think, therefore, we ought to encourage home
          industry. We ought to co-operate together, if there is any kind
          of business in which there is a profit, let us operate together
          and have the benefit of that profit among ourselves, instead of
          giving it to strangers. Why should we encourage the stranger to
          come here and import wagons to sell to us when we have got the
          brains and the money to sustain that business among ourselves?
          Why should we not rather do such things ourselves, and supply
          business and employment for our own people, many of whom are
          idle, and be independent of the world, and if there is a profit
          in it, put that profit in our own pockets, and use it for the
          comfort and happiness of our wives and children? It is a fact--at
          least it was reported to me as a fact by a person who is supposed
          to be acquainted with the business--that one man who deals in
          wagons and agricultural implements in Utah Territory, put $30,000
          into his pocket in one year, and he is only an agent for the
          company he deals with. I presume that the company put an equal
          amount into their pockets as the result of his labors; but the
          agent, as I was informed, put $30,000 in his own pocket as the
          result of his business. Who is it that buys the wagons, the
          plows, the harrows, the reapers, the mowers, etc., in Utah
          Territory? Is it the Gentiles? No, it is the Latter-day Saints.
          Those who are not Latter-day Saints are not engaged in
          agriculture as a rule. If there are any of them tilling the
          ground they are exceptions to the rule and they are very few and
          far between. They are not the people who use the wagons. They
          may, it is true, use some of them at the mines in hauling, etc.,
          etc. The vast bulk of this class of merchandise is consumed by
          the Latter-day Saints. The result is that the Latter-day Saints
          put that $30,000 into the pocket of the man I allude to. That
          same man sat on a Grand Jury and he paid to indict a man for
          marrying, acknowledging and maintaining his wives. That same man
          stands head and shoulders above many of his fellows in opposition
          to the Latter-day Saints, and in using his power abroad as well
          as in Utah against the interests of the people from whom he gets
          his money.
           F. Smith
          I do not feel that the Latter-day Saints are using their best
          wisdom, or acting upon the principle of the highest intelligence,
          when they sustain and patronize such men, especially when they
          have got the skill, the intelligence and the means to do all such
          business independent of all strangers or foreigners. I know they
          can do it if they will only co-operate together and do business
          upon business principles. Our honesty with the world is
          proverbial. It is the universal testimony of outsiders that trade
          with us here, that the Latter-day Saints are the most honest and
          best paying people they ever did business with. I believe this is
          true. If a Latter-day Saint owes a Gentile and also a brother, it
          is said, he will pay the Gentile every time in preference to his
          brother. Well, I do not know that this is right. I think if he
          cannot pay the full amount to both, it would be proper to pay
          each a proportion. Would not this be just as honest--instead of
          paying all to the Gentile and leaving your brother without
          anything? I think so. I do not know that we do this sort of thing
          to any extent; but I have sometimes herd of people that were
          thought to be very good payers to the outsiders, but were not so
          prompt in paying their brethren. I do not think that is exactly
          right. I think we ought not to go in debt at all beyond what we
          can pay. The Lord commands this. We ought to live within our
          means if possible, and if it is not possible and we keep living
          beyond our means, it is only a question of time when we won't
          trust us, and we will have to live within our means or die, or
          steal, as some one has added. When it comes to that kind of thing
          I feel as Dr. Johnson did when the beggar accosted him, "Why
          don't you go to work?" said the Doctor. "I cannot get any work, I
          cannot get anything to do, and you know, Doctor, I must live."
          "Well, said the Doctor, "I don't see the least necessity for it."
          (Laughter.) When a man won't pay his debts, or will not live
          within his means, when he knows what his income is: when a man
          will continue to get in debt to his neighbors as long as he has
          got any credit, knowing all the time that he cannot pay his
          way--well, I do not know that there is much necessity for that
          man to live. Perhaps the world would be as well off if he should
          pass away quietly somewhere. Every Latter-day Saint ought to
          learn--and especially every youth in Israel ought to learn--that
          every one of them should try to make the world a little better
          for their being in it, if they possibly can. We all ought to try
          to do some good. If we will do that, then there is some necessity
          for our living. God will bless us in our labors and efforts; and
          if we will co-operate together in our temporal affairs and
          conduct our business on correct principles, the world will be
          better for us, and we will be better off in the world. We will
          have more means to build up the kingdom of God; we will have more
          to use for the gathering of the poor, for the building up of
          Zion, for the benefit of the Saints, and for our own benefit, and
          we will have much more power in the world. Money is a powerful
          agent in this degenerated age. It is said that knowledge is
          power. Knowledge should stand above money or wealth. But in the
          present condition of the world money takes the lead.
           F. Smith
          This ought not to be the case with us. The Lord says in the
          scriptures, "make to yourselves friends of the mammon of
          unrighteousness." What for? Obviously that you may have power and
          influence with the unrighteous.
           F. Smith
          Now, if we had wealth--and we are bound to have it by and
          by--those who worship wealth would either covet it and hate us
          and try to destroy us to get it, as some are doing, or else they
          would be bound to acknowledge the power we could wield through
          the possession of wealth. Well, now, we need not be at all afraid
          of the former. They cannot destroy us; for the Lord is our
          friend, and we are His friends. He will not suffer them to rob
          and plunder us; and take away from us our possessions; or if He
          does, he will give us more abundantly; because if we possess
          riches they will be the Lord's. We will dedicate them to Him, if
          we do our duty, and they will belong to Him, and surely the Lord
          will protect His own. We should not despise these things, but
          should endeavor to use them for the accomplishment of the
          all-wise purposes of the Almighty. The Lord has said, Zion shall
          become the richest of all people. The earth is the Lord's, and
          the fullness of the earth is His. The cattle upon a thousand
          hills are His. The gold and the silver and all the mineral wealth
          of these vast mountains belong to the Lord. And although the
          wicked may get possession of them for a little while, yet they
          will perish by and by, and leave all their wealth behind. They
          cannot take it beyond the grave. By and by the Lord will overrule
          these matters in such a way, that the righteous, those who love
          God more than they love the world, and will use their means to
          the honor and glory of God, shall be made possessors of the earth
          and the fullness of it. It will be theirs to use for every
          purpose that is right and legitimate--to manipulate armies if
          necessary--to manipulate nations, or the world if necessary, to
          the carrying out of the purposes of Almighty God. We do not want
          to lavish it upon the lusts of the flesh. We should not desire it
          for that purpose.
           F. Smith
          If we do, God will withhold it from us, I hope; for no man should
          have wealth to gratify the lusts and desires of the flesh. We
          should use it to the honor and glory of God's name, and to the
          building up of His Kingdom.
           F. Smith
          We ought; therefore, to co-operate together in our mercantile
          institutions. It is as much a duty to sustain these as any other
          duty devolving upon us, or now as at any former time. We should
          patronize our brethren. We ought to see eye to eye in regard to
          these things. We ought to be united in everything. We should
          cheerfully extend a helping hand to our neighbors from time to
          time. If our neighbor is oppressed, if he lacks knowledge or
          understanding or skill in the management of his affairs, you that
          have skill and experience and know how to husband your strength
          and means, ought to take pains to instruct your neighbor or
          brother who is not as thoroughly posted as you are. The
          instructions he receives in this way will benefit him and will
          not injure or impoverish you. We ought not to be miserly in
          regard to anything we possess, that is good. We can freely impart
          to others and not diminish our own store. We can impart our
          experience for the benefit of others. If our brother is about to
          buy something that is apparently not required, it would be a
          benefit to the poor man, who lacks judgment, for the Bishop or
          his counselors, or for his Teacher to go to him and endeavor to
          show him the mistake he is about to make. I think we ought to
          co-operate together in all these matters, be one in all respects,
          and not be like the world, "every one for himself and the devil
          for all." The Lord has told us in a revelation through the
          Prophet Joseph Smith, that except we are one, we are not His. He
          has said that we must be united. We must be one. We should see
          eye to eye. We should help each other; help our neighbor and our
          brother. The Savior very beautifully describes who is our
          neighbor in the example of the good Samaritan. Who is your
          neighbor? Who is your brother? Why, the man that ministers to you
          in the time of need; the man that is your friend in the time of
          adversity; the man that extends a helping hand and saves you from
          error; the man that gives you the benefit of his experience and
          of his superior intelligence--he is your neighbor, your friend
          and your brother. Those who have embraced the Gospel--and
          especially those who are endowed with the authority of the Holy
          Priesthood, and are called to be saviors upon Mount Zion--ought
          to be the first and foremost in this good work of being saviors
          of their neighbors, and of their fellow creatures on the earth.
          It is our duty to teach correct principles, to instil them into
          the hearts of our children, and into the hearts of our neighbors,
          and to see that these principles are grounded in our own hearts;
          for except a man has been converted himself, and has a knowledge
          of the truth, it is folly for him to undertake to teach others
          the right way. But when the principles of the Gospel are
          thoroughly established in our own hearts, we can then go in the
          midst of our fellow creatures and say, "Come and follow me." We
          can do this consistently. We are called to be teachers of these
          principles to the inhabitants of the earth. We are called to be
          God's people, not a people of the world, for we have come out of
          the world. We ought to be united in all things temporal as well
          as spiritual. With God all things are spiritual. There is nothing
          temporal with Him at all, and there ought to be no distinction
          with us in regard to these things. Our earthly or temporal
          existence is merely a continuance of that which is spiritual.
          Every step we take in the great journey of life, the great
          journey of eternity, is a step in advance or in retrogression. We
          are here in mortality, it is true; but we are ahead of that
          condition we occupied before we came here and took upon us
          mortality. We are a step in advance of our former state. What is
          the body without the spirit? It is lifeless clay. What is it that
          affects this lifeless clay? It is the spirit, it is the immortal
          part, the eternal being, that existed before it came here, that
          exists within us, and that will continue to exist, and that by
          and by will redeem these tabernacles and bring them forth out of
          the graves. This whole mission of ours is spiritual. The work we
          have to do here, although we call it temporal, pertains alike to
          our spiritual and our temporal salvation. And the Lord has just
          as much right to dictate, to counsel, to direct and guide us in
          the manipulation and management of our temporal affairs, as we
          call them, as He has to say one word in relation to our spiritual
          affairs. So far as He is concerned there is no difference in this
          regard. He looks upon us as immortal beings. Our bodies are
          designed to become eternal and spiritual. God is spiritual
          Himself, although He has a body of flesh and bone as Christ has.
          Yet He is spiritual, and those who worship Him must do so in
          spirit and in truth. And when you come to separate the spiritual
          from the temporal, see that you do not make a mistake. Some are
          inclined to say, "the Lord has a right to manage my spiritual
          affairs, but I will not allow Him to interfere with my temporal
          affairs." Why, bless your soul, temporal things pertain to
          spiritual things. They minister to the spiritual man though they
          may be clothed with a tabernacle of flesh. The Bishop has as good
          a right to counsel the members of his Ward in relation to the
          purchase of merchandize or machinery, where and when he can do so
          wisely, as he has to counsel them in regard to spiritual matters.
          He has just as good a right to do the one as the other. He is a
          father to the people of the Ward. He is placed over the people
          for the purpose of leading them in the way of truth and
          righteousness, and it is his business to look after the
          temporal--if you chose to make any distinction between the
          temporal and spiritual--as well as the spiritual things. And
          President Taylor has as much right to direct the people in
          temporal things as he has in spiritual things. We ought to
          acknowledge that right, and ought to do it freely and cheerfully,
          because we should see that it is right. We are under no
          compulsion to do so if we do not see that it is right; but at the
          same time it is a correct principle, and every Latter-day Saint
          ought to have intelligence enough to know that this is the best
          thing for him to do--to be united, to be one with his brethren.
           F. Smith
          Now, you are going to have an election of county officers by and
          by. What are you going to do about it? Are you going to split
          tickets? Are you going to the polls to scratch off names, and put
          on the name of somebody else? I should hope not. I do not care
          who is put in office, only so far as we must obey the
          commandments of the Lord in these things. We must choose
          righteous men, good men to fill these positions. Hence if you
          will only get good men to fill these offices no one should care
          who they are, so that you have agreed upon them, and were one. We
          want you to be one both in temporal, political and religious
          things, in fact, in everything you put your hands to in
          righteousness. We want you to be one, one as God and Christ are
          one, seeing eye to eye. Do not try to crush anybody, or build
          yourselves up at the expense of your neighbor. Do not do it; it
          is a custom of the world, and it is a wrong principle. It is said
          in the Scriptures that the children of the world are wiser in
          their generation than the children of light. What does that mean?
          Why as I see it, when you go into Catholic communities, you will
          find that Catholics send their children to Catholic schools, and
          not to Protestant schools. You will find them patronizing
          Catholic merchants. They do not patronize Protestants. If there
          is anybody to put up for office they will put up their friends
          and vote for them. If you travel as missionaries throughout the
          world you will find this to be true. I have seen it in San
          Francisco, in New York, and in great Britain, and upon the
          Continent, and wherever I have been, and yet it is accounted
          criminal for Latter-day Saints to follow this rule. We might
          commit treason against the United States if we did not send our
          children to Gentile schools, or if we did not patronize Gentile
          merchants. If a Gentile wanted to run for an office, and we did
          not vote for him, why, we are in rebellion against the government
          of the United States. I am going to tell you in a few words, what
          I think about these matters. I think the Latter-day Saints ought
          to send their children to be educated by those who are their
          friends, and not by their enemies. I think the Latter-day Saints
          ought to patronize their brethren and sustain them, in preference
          to their enemies. I believe that the Latter-day Saints ought to
          co-operate together and do their own business instead of asking
          the Gentiles to do it for them. I believe the Latter-day Saints
          ought to unite together in regard to all these things, and to
          their business upon the most wise and economical principles,
          instead of every individual doing it himself, wasting his means,
          sustaining his enemies, and getting materials he has no use for.
          That is what I believe in regard to these matters.
           F. Smith
          To-day is Saturday, I am glad of it; for somebody would say I was
          breaking the Sabbath if I were to preach to you in this way on
          the Sabbath. But this is Saturday. It is the Jewish Sabbath. It
          is only unto man that there is a Sabbath. The Lord has set apart
          one day in seven upon which man should rest, because it is
          needful for the body and the mind. We should worship the Lord
          upon that day. Man was not made for the Sabbath, but the Sabbath
          was made for man.
           F. Smith
          It is for us to do our duty and live our religion on one day the
          same as any other. Let us serve the Lord in righteousness all the
          day long, and He will be our Father and Friend, and our enemies
          shall have no power over us. This is my testimony in the name of
          Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 / George
          Q. Cannon, July 21st, 1878
                          George Q. Cannon, July 21st, 1878
               Delivered at Ogden, on Sunday Morning, July 21st, 1878.
                             Reported by Geo. F. Gibbs.
          I am very pleased this morning at having the opportunity of
          meeting with the Latter-day Saints in Ogden, and I trust that
          while I shall attempt to address you, I shall be assisted by the
          Spirit of God, in making such remarks as shall be appropriate to
          your circumstances and condition. Brother Hardy, in his remarks,
          said we were the people of God, and that we were engaged in
          establishing His Kingdom on the earth. If this is so--and I
          suppose you as Latter-day Saints who are present to-day, can bear
          testimony that this is the case--then we ought to be a people
          entirely different from every other people upon the face of the
          earth; because there can be but one people of God, or one Church
          of God, or one Kingdom of God; there cannot be two, nor three,
          nor more, one opposed to the other. Everything that has been
          revealed concerning God, concerning His Church, and concerning
          the principles of salvation, leads us to the conclusion that
          there is a oneness, that there is union, and that divisions and
          opposition cannot exist among the people of God; it would be
          entirely inconsistent with every idea of the eternal Creator to
          suppose anything else than this. Hence, no matter where you find
          those who are truthfully the people of God, you will find them
          under all circumstances united, thinking alike, believing alike,
          and acting alike. That is, having the same objects in view, the
          same aims to reach, and being prompted by one common motive or
          impulse. Therefore, having this view, I differ, upon some points,
          from some who are called Latter-day Saints, who seem to entertain
          the idea that because we are in the world we must necessarily be
          of the world, a part of them; and that the standard which is
          looked up to and recognized in the world as correct, is one to
          which we should conform. Now, in this respect I differ from those
          of my brethren who entertain these ideas. I think it is our duty,
          making the professions we do and occupying the position we do, to
          be so far as necessary entirely original, or to use a word that
          is commonly used to describe us, a peculiar people. Because the
          world have a certain way to accomplish certain objects, I do not
          recognize it as at all necessary for us to do the same as they
          do. And I am quite willing that it should be known and
          understood, so far as I am individually concerned, that in many
          respects I differ from the world by which I am surrounded: and
          that in being a Latter-day Saint I claim the right, so long as I
          act in accordance with the rules of good order and do not violate
          any rules of decorum, to do as I please, to think as I please,
          and talk as I please. This is a right that I claim as a
          Latter-day Saint. If I choose to believe that God has established
          upon the earth His Church, at the head of which He has placed a
          Prophet, and I choose to believe in that Prophet, to listen to
          his teachings, to be guided by his counsels, I claim that so long
          as I do this and do not interfere with my fellow citizens in the
          exercise of their privileges, it is my right to do so. If I
          choose to believe that the Lord has placed in His Church Twelve
          Apostles, to whom He has given the keys of the Apostleship and
          authority, and to whom He has committed the last dispensation,
          requiring of them to go to all nations as messengers of life and
          salvation, or see that the Gospel is carried to all the nations
          of the earth, and I choose to listen to their instructions and
          counsels and be governed by them, choosing to acknowledge them as
          channels through which life and salvation shall flow unto me, and
          that every administration of the laws and ordinances of God's
          House is sacred and holy if I choose to do this, I think it is my
          right to do it, so long as in doing so I interfere with no other
          man's rights and privileges. So in relation to gathering
          together. If, as a Latter-day Saint, I choose to leave other
          societies and communities and separate myself from them, to cast
          my lot in the midst of a people with a faith similar to my own,
          to choose them as my associates and mingle with them, and to
          patronize them and uphold them in all their labors and
          undertakings, who is there that has the right to question me in
          so doing, so long as I do not interfere with the rights of my
          fellow citizens? In speaking thus of myself, the same applies to
          this entire people; for that which is right in individual cases,
          is right in cases of an entire community, whether they be
          numbered by thousands or millions. A great deal of fault has been
          found with us, as a community, because of these peculiarities,
          because we choose to believe that God our Eternal Father has
          established His Church and placed at the head thereof a Prophet;
          because He has established His Church and placed therein
          Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, Teachers and other helps:
          because He has restored the everlasting Gospel in its simplicity
          and power; and also the gifts thereof, so that men can enjoy them
          again; because, I say, we believe in this and claim this, a great
          many are disposed to find fault with us. Now, I claim that it is
          nobody's business but our own what we believe, as to how we live,
          as to how we do or how we organize ourselves, so long as we do
          not violate law and do not trample upon the rights of those by
          whom we may be surrounded who are our fellow citizens. I speak
          thus because of some things which I notice in our midst. Now, I
          am away considerably, and when I get back I suppose I look upon
          the condition of affairs here with a little more scrutiny than if
          I were here altogether. And I notice this, that there is a
          disposition among some who belong to the Church to truckle, a
          tendency to bow, a tendency to drift in the direction of society
          as it exists elsewhere, and I have noticed that some people are
          dreadfully afraid of the association of church and state,
          dreadfully afraid that somebody will be mingling politics and
          religion, that some one who holds office in the Church among us
          may hold some political office. I do not share in that fear in
          the least. I have never shared in it, I hope I never shall and
          have no idea I ever shall. To do this, I am too conscious of the
          fact that the Latter-day Saints have been led to these mountains
          by the Almighty, through His servants, and that He has given unto
          us rights as citizens of the land, and being in the majority, it
          is our right to govern this land, to govern it in such a manner
          as shall secure to all men who enter its borders their rights,
          whether they be Latter-day Saints, Methodists, Presbyterians,
          Infidels, or anybody else, either "heathen Chinese" or civilized
          American. The Lord has given us ability thus far to govern the
          land; and it affords me no little pleasure to be able to say that
          there is no part of this nation so well governed as this
          Territory, which has since the day we came here been governed by
          the "Mormon" people; and there is no part of these United States
          that compares with this Territory for prosperity, for good order,
          for good government, and for freedom from taxation and everything
          else that is burdensome. And to whom is the credit due? It is due
          to the Lord; and next to Him it is due to His servants and
          There have been attempts, and there will be continued attempts
          made to wrest the control of this land from us. We are engaged in
          a warfare; we have been told from the beginning that it is a
          warfare that will not cease until righteousness prevails on the
          earth. Every man that enters into this Church, if he understands
          the nature of his calling, understands that he enters into a
          warfare to contend for the triumph of truth. Do not those who are
          opposed to the Latter-day Saints recognize this? Certainly they
          do; and their efforts have been, and are so directed to-day, and
          will continue to be, to wrest that power from us which the Lord
          has given unto us. They would throw dust in the eyes of the
          Latter-day Saints, if possible, and try to foster in the minds of
          the people that there is something very inconsistent with the
          Constitution and genius of our institutions for men who are
          religious to have anything to do with politics. It is considered
          all very well for a wicked man to hold office; he can mingle in
          politics and help to frame the government of the country; but the
          man who makes any profession of religion, especially if he be an
          official in the church to which he belongs, has no right to
          meddle in politics, or interfere in any way with the government
          of society. This is all wrong from beginning to end. Admitting
          what I said in the beginning, that we are the people of God, I
          would ask, what better people can be found, and what more
          suitable people to take charge of the affairs of mankind in the
          earth and establish righteous principles and maintain laws under
          which all men can dwell in peace and be entirely free from
          oppression and everything of this character? Who, I would ask,
          are better qualified to do this than the men who understand the
          principles of truth? Suppose, for instance, that to-day and from
          this day forward, the Latter-day Saints, those who are active in
          their religion and in the performance of the duties of their
          religion, were to withdraw from politics and leave the government
          of this land to others, what would be the result? It would not be
          but a little while before the scenes we see in other places, and
          that are deplored by every lover of liberty in the country, would
          be enacted in this part of the land; you would see a condition of
          affairs that would cause you to mourn, and you would be willing
          to flee to any place almost to be free from participating in
          them. This would be the result if those who are active, as
          Latter-day Saints, were to withdraw from participation in these
          matters. But is this the design of the Lord? No, it is not; He
          never did design that this should be the case, and it would be a
          want of wisdom on our part, as a people, to allow any such a
          condition of affairs to exist. I maintain that Latter-day Saints
          have a perfect right to hold office, and they should not be
          excluded from office; that whenever the people choose to elect
          one of them, it would not be considered improper in the least
          degree, no matter what his standing, he has a perfect right to
          hold that office; and if he be a righteous man, the better it
          will be for the people, if he will condescend to take upon him
          the duties of the office. Instead of excluding such a person I
          would feel thankful to him to fill it, feeling assured that such
          men would give satisfaction, and that while they were in power
          good government would be preserved in the land. Some of our
          enemies have come to Congress, and have complained about
          "Mormons" holding office. I have said, gentlemen, if you would
          exclude a "Mormon" from holding office, because of his
          ecclesiastical authority, you will have to exclude every man of
          worth in the Territory, for there is not a man of worth in the
          Territory who does not hold some office in our Church. The
          shoemaker who works at his trade for a living, may be called upon
          on the Sabbath to preach to the people; the carpenter, the
          blacksmith, the mason, the man who works from Monday morning to
          Saturday night may be called upon to preach the Gospel of
          Salvation; and such men are all the time being called to go to
          the nations of the earth as ministers of the Gospel; and if it be
          a crime for a man to hold a political office who is a minister in
          our Church, then you will have to exclude every man of worth in
          our Territory, for our Bishops are our most prominent and active
          business men; and there is this feature with those who act in
          this Territory, they act without pay; and the men who distinguish
          themselves in the manipulation of their own affairs are generally
          selected to manage the affairs of the public, and they are men
          most suitable to attend to business affairs, to act as Probate
          Judges, or in any other office. When this is explained, it is
          very rarely you will hear a man find fault. But there are some
          who complain about the "Mormon" hierarchy, who do not seem to
          know that it consists of the entire people, and that every man of
          worth, professing the faith and religion of the Latter-day
          Saints, belongs to that hierarchy.
          I trust none of the Latter-day Saints are tender on this point. I
          would proclaim it to the world that we have such confidence in
          our leading men, the men who have made this country, and who have
          planted our feet in these mountains, the men who have all the day
          long urged the people to habits of industry, and to become
          self-sustaining, the men who framed our governments--our city
          government, or county government, our Territorial government,
          such as we have to-day, and who organized us as we are organized
          here; I say, I am not ashamed to acknowledge that I am willing to
          be led and governed by the counsels of men who have done such
          wonders, as we witness on every hand. Call them Apostles, call
          them Prophets, call them Bishops, call them Elders, call them
          anything you please that is honorable, I am not ashamed of it. I
          would just as soon they dictate us to have a little caucus do it.
          I have seen these caucuses outside of this Territory and among
          non-Mormons. A few men get together and caucus, and plan and
          arrange, and they get up a ticket, and lay their wires so that
          others will sustain it, and the Convention will sustain it, and
          by this means get their favorites into power. This is a common
          practice all over the United States. I would deplore it as one of
          the great evils that could occur to us, that there should be a
          scramble for office among the Latter-day Saints. When two or
          three brethren, who aspire for office, try to divide the people,
          this is something to be deplored. I therefore have always
          advocated keeping down our salaries, that offices may not be very
          desirable, so that men shall not desire to get possession of
          office to use it, or feel that because they are elected once to
          office they ought to always have it. We should always be ready
          and willing to serve when called upon, and just as willing to
          decline when required, having at heart the good of the community.
          A great many of the Members of Congress during the last session
          were exceedingly anxious for an early adjournment. Why? That they
          might return home in time to manage the primary meetings, because
          if they did not, there was every probability that they would be
          defeated. It has been noticed, for instance, that Oregon has
          never elected the same man twice. Why? Because when the
          convention met to nominate a candidate the member would be in
          Washington, and somebody else would be nominated, and he would be
          left out in the cold. It is a remarkable fact that from that
          State up to the present date a Member of Congress and a Senator
          has never been elected twice for the same term. And there are
          other places similarly situated, where men have to be home to
          superintend the nominations, or they would lose the election. I
          cannot tell how many times I have been congratulated on the ease
          with which I have ben elected. Members ask me if I have to spend
          much money and time to secure my election. I tell them it has
          never cost me any trouble in the least; that I have been elected
          because the people want me; and when they do not want me I should
          stop at home. There are some districts in the United States in
          the same condition, where men are so strong in their districts
          that it is not necessary that they should return to arrange for
          their election. But in the most of cases this is what they have
          to do; they have to watch very carefully, and have their friends
          on the watch for them, and lay their plans so that they may not
          have their primary meetings and conventions captured by their
          enemies. I would indeed deplore the existence of this condition
          of affairs among us. If there should be any division of sentiment
          among us at any time, let us do as brethren and sisters should
          do--for the sisters have a voice in this matter as well as the
          men, and their voice should have weight; there should be
          representatives of both sexes--and arrange our differences in the
          beginning, in our first meetings and there settle them; and then
          let us go to the polls united, as one body, sinking any
          differences of opinion we may have, being determined to carry out
          that which the majority decides upon, because the majority should
          rule, and this is a principle that should be recognized. The
          voice of the majority should be potent, and have influence with
          the minority, and the minority should not rebel against the
          majority. You take a republican caucus or a democratic caucus;
          let them get together and talk about any principle or upon any
          nomination. They set us an example in some respects, which we
          might imitate with a good deal of profit. I have seen and known
          of them quarrelling, and have heard strong arguments--the most
          bitter arguments; but after the vote has been taken, after the
          will of the majority has been announced by vote, then the
          minority submit and cast their votes with the majority. It is so
          in nominating the Speaker of the House. The democratic speaker of
          the House is not the choice of the entire Democratic party, but
          he is the choice of the majority. So with the doorkeeper,
          sergeant-at-arms and the various officers selected, and the
          minority submits to the majority. So with the Republicans in the
          senate. It should be so with us, as a community; we should be
          willing to submit to the will of the majority upon these points.
          I am thankful, brethren and sisters, in coming back to find so
          much prosperity in our Territory. You may think you have had hard
          times, as I have no doubt you have, there is a scarcity of money,
          and in some instances a scarcity of labor. But compared with the
          condition of the East, you can well say you have a good deal of
          prosperity. It is a most painful thing to witness the amount of
          destitution and poverty found in many of the eastern cities, and
          through the land generally. You can scarcely walk from the
          Capitol down Pennsylvania Avenue to the hotel, without being
          solicited as many as half a dozen times for charity, colored
          people and white people soliciting alms. And this is the case in
          most cities. It is most painful to see respectable people, people
          whom you would not suspect were in want, from the appearance of
          their clothes, ask for alms. And this is the case almost
          universally throughout the east. One of the most grave fears I
          noticed in the minds of members during this and the summer
          previous to the adjournment was, that the difficulty arising from
          the hard times, the want of labor, etc., would give rise to
          destructive riots. It is true that men's hearts are failing them
          in looking forward for the things that are coming to pass.
          In this respect we are not without our difficulties. We have
          trouble about water. That is one of the weighty questions that is
          looming up in our midst--how to divide our water equitably and
          justly, and will have to receive attention. Another question is,
          how to employ our poor people; how shall we put an end to
          idleness in our midst? how shall we furnish employment to our
          numerous children, our young men and women growing up? what shall
          we do to furnish an abundance of employment for every one who
          desires labor? These two questions require attention. But
          notwithstanding the existence of these difficulties, our
          condition in many respects is a most enviable one. We have a
          healthy country; we have a country where we can live in peace and
          quietness. The rights of society have been respected thus far in
          our midst; secret combinations do not exist among us having for
          their object the overthrow of existing institutions or the
          destruction of society and property, or the reducing of property
          to one common level. There are no evils of this kind menacing us
          to-day. We have an abundance of land. It is true our land is dry
          land: but still there is plenty of room for our young people to
          spread out. And there should be one principle, I think, observed
          by us, and that is, that every father and every man who has
          influence in our various localities should endeavor to the extent
          of his ability and opportunity to bestow upon our young men a
          knowledge of the various branches of business. It is a matter
          pressing itself upon our attention, and it should receive
          attention from us; that every boy and every girl in our community
          should be taught something, some branch of skilled industry by
          which they can sustain themselves. If our boys wish to become
          farmers, make them the best of farmers, endeavor to teach them
          some knowledge concerning agricultural chemistry, so that they
          will be the better qualified to make our land as productive as it
          can be made. Let our girls be taught branches adapted to their
          sex, by which they can sustain themselves. Let our great desire
          in this direction be to become a nation of producers, that
          idleness may not be known in our land. This is a matter that must
          receive attention; it has received some, but it must receive
          more. If some of our boys evince a desire to become herdsmen,
          efforts should be made to put them in possession of books on
          stock-raising. The very best sources of information respecting
          this business should be placed within their reach to enable them
          to raise the very best animals; and this desire to make the best
          use of the blessings of God, should be encouraged and entertained
          by all. Do not forget, my brethren and sisters, the teachings you
          have heard and which have been repeated in our hearing for so
          many years; I refer to the saving and storing of grain; for the
          day will come when you will see the wisdom of doing so, and when
          many of you will doubtless wish you had profited by it. For I
          tell you that wars and desolation will cover the land, just as
          prophets have declared they would; and these are coming, coming,
          coming, as plainly and as surely as the light comes in the
          morning before the sun rises above the summit of yonder
          mountains, and before we see his rays. We see the light
          approaching from the east, which gives us notice that the sun is
          upon us, and that we will soon feel his rays. So with the signs
          of the times at the present. We have only to read the newspapers,
          and look abroad and see confusion, and see difficulties, and see
          war, and see pestilence foreshadowing themselves over the land.
          And these things will come to pass as sure as the Lord has spoken
          it, and as sure as His servants have testified to these words. I
          say you should be thankful every morning, noon and night, and all
          day long, that you are in these mountains, and that your families
          are so comfortably taken care of in these secluded valleys. You
          may have difficulties to contend with, we may have many things
          that render our position unpleasant; but nevertheless our
          position is the most enviable of any community or any people
          within the confines of the United States, from Canada in the
          north to Mexico on the south. There are no people who enjoy a
          more enviable position. Men have already begun to accord this to
          us, and say our location is exceedingly desirable. And the fact
          is being understood and recognized, that there has been what they
          call a series of fortunate circumstances, but which we call the
          providences of God, around this people, that have placed us in a
          most wonderful position to exercise power and do great good.
          Every time I come home I have these feelings deepened in my
          heart. I feel more thankful every time I come in sight of these
          mountains from the east; it seems that every trip increases my
          thankfulness, to see the homes and places which God has given
          unto us, to which He has led us and which He has made so blessed
          in our dwelling here. We are blessed with pure healthy water; and
          the sun, although its rays are fierce, does not have the effect
          upon us as upon the people in the east. If the thermometer were
          to rise 10 degrees higher, I would rather endure the heat here,
          say at 100 degrees, than at 90 degrees in the east. I feel more
          vigorous, which is doubtless in consequence of the cool and
          refreshing canyon breezes which blow down upon us evenings and
          nights, which enable us to recuperate from the wastes of the day.
          This is only one thing, but it shows how good the Lord has been
          in leading us out to this land; and the time will yet come when
          we will appreciate our position, geographically, still more, when
          the calamities which have been spoken of by ancient and modern
          prophets overtake the inhabitants of the earth as well as those
          of our own nation. Look at our nation for instance; it is
          asserted by a majority of the people that the President has been
          put in his position by fraud. Although it has not been proven
          that President Hayes has been a party to the fraud, and indeed, I
          believe him to be free from accusations of this kind, yet this
          does not change the fact that a majority of the nation believe
          that he occupies the presidential chair through fraud. And of
          course if this is the case his Cabinet is not legally chosen. But
          it shows the condition we are coming to; those of you who are
          posted in the results of what is called the Potter investigating
          committee are acquainted with the irregularities that have been
          brought to light, which alone give an idea of the state of
          Shall we, brethren and sisters, allow ourselves to drift into
          this channel? When men come to us saying that it is not right
          that we should manage our election affairs as we do, shall we
          hearken to them when there are such examples before us all
          through the east? I say it would be placing ourselves in a most
          undesirable and critical position; it would be throwing away the
          blessings God has given us, and which He wishes us to magnify and
          appreciate. I hope to see the day when through all of these
          mountains, from Idaho in the north to Mexico in the south, there
          shall be a free people dwelling at peace, enjoying the blessings
          of liberty, enjoying the blessings of a Constitutional form of
          government, electing their own officers by their own free and
          unbiased choice, and upholding them; and these officers executing
          justice and righteousness in the midst of the people. I do
          already see it in part, for all through these valleys we have a
          system of government which is the purest Constitutional
          republican-democratic form of government that can be found
          anywhere over the United States. I prize it, I know its cost; and
          we should maintain it, every man and woman should maintain it by
          standing up for their rights, for they have a right to vote, and
          vote for any man they may choose, no matter who he may be. When
          you decide that he is the man to fill the office, then elect him,
          and if you find that such a man does not suit you, when the time
          comes, change him, and uphold such men only as will maintain the
          laws and the principles of Constitutional government, and honor
          the office to which they are elected. Let us never feel to
          oppress any man because of his religious views, or because of his
          poverty or because of his political views; but to the contrary,
          feel that it is a sacred duty imposed upon us to tolerate freedom
          and preserve good order, and see that integrity and honesty
          prevail in the land. And you will see the day, and it is not far
          distant, when these mountains will be the stronghold of a free
          people, and when men will come here because the principles of the
          Constitution will be maintained here; and they will be protected
          in their political and religious rights. And this is the mission
          which God has given unto us. We should stand shoulder to
          shoulder, and let no man divide us, no matter who he may be. It
          is our duty to bind these people together in the strongest
          possible manner by the bonds of righteousness, not in iniquity,
          not by secret combinations, but by the bonds of righteousness;
          because we are few in number, and it is only by our unity that we
          can be made strong. Let us maintain unity, brethren and sisters;
          let us maintain it in the Gospel, maintain it in the ordinances
          that God requires us to submit to; maintain it in all our
          political affairs, from north to south, and be one, bearing in
          our minds that a poor nomination well sustained is better than a
          good nomination not sustained.
          That God may bless you, and fill you with His Holy Spirit, and
          preserve you in the liberty of the Gospel, is my prayer, in the
          name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 25 / John
          Taylor, August 17th, 1844
                           John Taylor, August 17th, 1844
                         DISCOURSE BY PRESIDENT JOHN TAYLOR,
              Delivered in the Bowery at Rexburg, Bannock Stake, Idaho,
                        Sunday Afternoon, August 17th, 1844.
                             (Reported by John Irvine.)
          I am pleased to have the opportunity of meeting with you in this
          place, of visiting your homes in these new settlements, and of
          striking hands and conversing with many of our old friends with
          whom we have been associated quite a distance from here, and some
          a very long distance indeed.
          As Latter-day Saints we have gathered to these valleys of the
          mountains. We are assembled together for certain purposes
          associated with our own individual interests; in other respects
          for purposes connected with the welfare of our families, of our
          wives, our children, our husbands, etc. And then, further, we
          have gathered together as we have done in these mountains to
          comply with certain requisitions made my the Almighty upon His
          people in these latter days. We have come here in accordance with
          a message that he has communicated from the heavens to the
          inhabitants of the earth. These ideas and feelings are at the
          foundation of all our movements, of all our acts. We occupy a
          very peculiar position in the midst of these United States and
          also in the world. We differ from others in a great many
          respects, in our ideas of God, in our religious sentiments, in
          our social views, and in our relationship with each other, and in
          many respects in all the leading characteristics of human life
          and existence pertaining either to this world or to the world
          that is to come. We assemble here as Latter-day Saints--for it is
          to these that I am speaking--and I understand the term Latter-day
          Saint is used in contradistinction to former-day Saints. The
          Church of Christ existed some 1800 years ago, when Christ himself
          was its teacher. He came down from the heavens to teach and
          instruct the people in the ways of life. Those who believed in
          Him were baptized in His name for the remission of sins, and they
          had hands laid upon them for the reception of the Holy Ghost.
          They were born of the water and of the Spirit, and were made new
          creatures in Christ Jesus. They were instructed in the principles
          of the Gospel, and they had placed among them Prophets, Apostles,
          Pastors, Teachers, Evangelists. We are told that these men were
          authorized by Jesus to preach the Gospel to all the nations of
          the earth. We are told that they were to tarry at Jerusalem,
          until they had received power from on high, notwithstanding all
          the teachings they had had from the Savior. What was that power?
          It was the gift of the Holy Ghost. Had they not received it? Not
          in the sense here implied. What, not those that had been with
          Jesus? No, I repeat, not in the sense here implied. Jesus
          emphatically told them that it was necessary He should go away;
          for if He went not away the Comforter would not come. He
          instructed His Apostles to teach certain principles that should
          exist and that ought to prevail among all the human family. But
          the people have departed from these things. The Gospel put them
          in possession of the Holy Ghost, which brought things past to
          their remembrance, let them into all truth, and showed them of
          things to come. The Savior explained the office of the Holy
          Ghost. It would enable those who received it to comprehend the
          past, the present and the future. It would draw aside the curtain
          of the invisible world, and they would be enabled to gaze through
          the dark vista of future ages and comprehend the purposes of God,
          as they rolled forth in all their majesty, glory and power. And
          then in the Church, as I have said, there were placed Prophets,
          Apostles, Pastors, Teachers, etc., for the perfecting of the
          Saints, and for the work of the ministry; that men properly
          qualified and endowed of God, by His Holy Spirit, and ordained
          and set apart by Him, might go forth as messengers of life and
          salvation to the nations of the earth. Hence they had their
          Twelve, their Seventies, their Bishops, and the various officers
          of the church. This organization to which I now refer, existed
          1,800 years ago, on the continent of Asia, and according to
          accounts given in the Book of Mormon, a similar organization
          existed on this continent. Here they had their Twelve, and these
          Twelve were commissioned to preach the Gospel as the others were
          on the continent of Asia. Jesus visited them here as He visited
          the others in Asia, and they were placed under His guidance and
          Now, what condition was the world in before the Gospel we now
          preach was introduced? Many of you older men here--there are not
          so many old men here as we find in some places--lived when the
          Gospel was not upon the earth. I did and many others did. Where
          could we find anything resembling that which was taught by Jesus?
          Nowhere on the face of the wide earth. Apostles, Prophets,
          Pastors, Teachers, etc., were nowhere to be found. Do I know
          this? I do know it, for I lived in the world at that time. I knew
          what was going on. I was mixed up with their teachers, and was
          well acquainted with the different societies and organizations.
          Did they have the Gospel as laid down in the Scriptures? No. I
          remember reading with very great interest the remarks of one of
          the Wesleys--I do not remember now whether it was Charles or
          John--in some poetry of his:
               "From chosen Abraham's seed the new
                Apostles chose
                 O'er isles and continents to spread the
                  soul reviving news."
          He knew very well that they did not have Apostles, nor those
          officers that used to exist in the Church, and he felt it keenly,
          as did many others. I, myself, mixed up with a society of
          gentlemen before I heard the fullness of the Gospel, who were
          searching the Scriptures to find out the true way; for we did not
          find any men who professed to be inspired. We were told that all
          inspiration had ceased, and yet there were men professing to be
          called of God to preach the Gospel. Now, that is a very singular
          thing. How can a man be called of God, if God has ceased to
          speak? If a man is called of God, he must be called either by the
          voice or Spirit of God, or by somebody who is authorized of God,
          and knows something about His ways. If he does not receive his
          calling in this way, how is he going to get it? There is one
          other way--that is, if God has had a regular Priesthood upon the
          earth, unbroken, uncorrupted and uncontaminated, then it might
          come down from one to another through the different ages. The
          Church of Rome professes to trace its authority down from the
          days of the Apostles until the present. But unfortunately there
          is a Scripture that rather interferes with them and with others,
          namely: "Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine
          of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of
          Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son." I will tell you
          what Joseph Smith told me personally. Said he: "You are going out
          to preach the Gospel, and if you can find a people anywhere as
          you wander through the world"--which I have done a great deal,
          traveled thousands, and I do not know but hundreds of thousands
          of miles, and mingled with all classes and creeds and conditions
          of men, religious and irreligious, professors and non-professors,
          Christians and Jews, Gentiles and all classes of people--"if you
          can find," said he, "a people anywhere having the doctrines of
          Christ, you need not baptize them." But I never found anywhere,
          wherever I went, any persons holding the doctrines of Christ as
          taught by Him, with Apostles and Prophets and inspired men under
          the influence of the Holy Ghost, and with an organization similar
          to that which was introduced by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
          Therefore I had to call upon all men everywhere to repent, for I
          could not find the kind of people Joseph said I need not baptize.
          Wesley and Whitfield, and going back still further, Luther,
          Melancthon, Knowx, Zwingli, and many other reformers, started
          what are termed reformations. But what did they do in those
          reformations? Did they bring back the pure Gospel of Christ? No,
          they did not, and they did not profess to do it. It is left for
          some of their admirers to do that for them which they in their
          day never professed to do. What did they do? They tried to reform
          abuses that were in the church. Well, what was done by these
          people? What influence were they under? They were under the
          influence, more or less, of the Spirit of the living God. But
          they didn't have the Gospel, you say? No; but they were not
          deprived of a portion of the Spirit of the living God on that
          account. It is a very great error for us to suppose that men
          throughout the whole world have not been under an influence of
          that kind more or less. We are told in the Scriptures that God
          has given unto all men a portion of His Spirit to profit withal,
          and many men who have followed that Spirit according to the light
          they have had, have done a great deal of good among men, among
          whom were Luther, Calvin, Melancthon, Wesley, Fletcher, and
          others in the various churches. Fletcher, I think, was a Church
          of England minister; so was John Wesley, and many others; then
          there were others among the Presbyterians, Methodists, Catholics,
          etc. They were good men. They sought to do good, and did do good;
          for he that doeth righteousness is righteous. They followed the
          leadings of that portion of the Spirit of God which is given to
          all men to profit withal. They operated in the interests of
          humanity; introduced many charitable institutions; made provision
          for the poor and outcast, the lame, and the blind; acted in a
          very liberal, kind and generous manner. I have known, in my
          travels, many ladies and gentlemen possessing large fortunes, who
          spent their time and their means in trying to promote the welfare
          of humanity. But was that the fullness of the Gospel of the Son
          of God? No, it was not. Was it right for them to do these things?
          Yes; for it is always right for all men to do good to their
          fellow men; to be moral, virtuous, honorable and upright; and
          notwithstanding the wickedness and crime that exist in these
          United States, yet there are thousands and millions of good
          honorable men who desire to do right; but they do not know the
          truth, and are led astray by men who know not what they say nor
          what they affirm. If these men had the Gospel with which is
          associated the gift of the Holy Ghost, it would lead them into
          all truth as it did in former days. And what is said of
          circumstances and events that shall transpire in the last days?
          We are told that it shall come to pass, when the Lord shall bring
          again Zion, that her watchmen shall see eye to eye. This will be
          the case when all the people of Zion live their religion, and
          comply with the requirements of the Lord.
          Speaking of good men, I had several gentlemen call upon me just
          before I left the city. They were Jews. They came from London, or
          somewhere in that neighborhood. One of them professed to be a
          lineal descendant of the tribe of Levi, and of the house of
          Aaron, and I was told by part of the company that he held the
          legitimate right to the Aaronic Priesthood, and his name agreed
          with the records we have pertaining to these things. Well, these
          men were engaged in a very charitable enterprise. They had heard
          that we had some sympathies with the Jews, and desired to see me
          and have a talk with me on the subject. They told me about the
          terrible scenes that had transpired in Russia lately, and the
          heavy persecutions that their people had endured in that country.
          They and their friends had subscribed some 80,000 (about
          $400,000) to assist their persecuted brethren in Russia, and had
          formed a number of colonies in the United States, and thus
          delivered a great many from their oppressors. They have purchased
          large tracts of land, and established their brethren upon them. I
          told them they had rather missed the place--that they should have
          taken up Palestine. That, they said, would be all right in its
          time; they could easily go from this country to Palestine when
          the time came. I talked with them about a good many principles. I
          talked about our temples, and said that they would have to build
          one at Jerusalem, and I told them that I had spoken to Baron
          Rothschild on this same subject some few years ago, and that he
          would assist in gathering the people. They said that he had given
          them some help in connection with the enterprise they now had in
          hand, and they supposed he would assist in the future.
          I speak of these things to show the good feelings that exist
          among men in many instances. That was certainly a very charitable
          act for these men to be engaged in. They were Jews and not
          Christians, neither were they Latter-day Saints. Why, it would be
          a good work for an infidel to be engaged in--to do good to his
          fellow men and relieve the oppressed. That is what we believe
          in--to do good to all men, especially to the household of faith.
          It is well for us to remember that we are not the only people God
          has on the earth. We are told that He is the God and Father of
          the spirits of all flesh. He is therefore interested in the whole
          of the human family. The Savior commanded His Apostles to preach
          the Gospel to every creature. Why? Because the whole of the human
          family are the sons and daughters of God, and it was proper that
          they should have the principles of life and salvation presented
          to them. He has told us to do the same thing--to carry the Gospel
          to every nation, kindred, tongue and people--and our Elders go
          forth, as they did in former times, without purse or scrip,
          trusting in God. And some of them get killed. We have heard of
          two being slain quite recently in these United States, where we
          boast so much of freedom, human rights, liberty of conscience,
          etc. Right in the State of Tennessee, this atrocious deed has
          taken place, and it is not long since one of our brethren was
          murdered in Georgia. We feel sorry for these things; but, then,
          we cannot help it. We cannot relinquish our labors in relation to
          these matters. It is enjoined upon us to preach the Gospel to
          every creature, and we propose to carry out these things as the
          Apostles did in former times. Lives may be sacrificed for the
          truth's sake; but it makes no difference where we are if we are
          only engaged in the work of God. Jesus said: "Fear not them which
          kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear
          Him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell." I fear
          God, and know no other fear, and do not want to; and when men
          talk sometimes about what they will do and what they are going to
          do with the Mormons--"Wondrous works in the land of Ham, and
          terrible things by the Red Sea"--it does not make our knees shake
          nor our heart palsy. We feel that we are here to do the will of
          God, and in the name of Israel's God we will do it; we will, God
          being our helper. These are my feelings, these are the feelings
          of my brethren around me, and these are the feelings o