John Corrill, A Brief History of the Church of Christ of Latter Day Saints, 1839

  • Source Note
  • Historical Introduction
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Chapter 2

CHAPTER II.
 
Investigation—Prophets and Revelations—God the same in all ages—References to  Scripture—Conclusion.
 
1st. On the subject of prophets, prophesying, and the gifts of Reve lation in modern times.
It was objected, and I admitted, that we had no such things in our  day. But what is the reason that we are not to look for them? They  certainly were expected in ancient times, and were received. Has  God changed? Are the Scriptures false? Has the plan of salvation been  altered? Or have we departed from God, transgressed his laws, chang ed the ordinances and broken the everlasting covenant, as the prophet  said?—(Isa. xxiv. 5. Mal. iii. 7.) Or has the time come, spoken of by  the Apostle, when men would not endure sound doctrine, but turn  their ears from truth, give heed to fables, and heap up to themselves  teachers having itching ears, having a form of Godliness, but denying  the power.—(2 Tim. iv. 3, 4, and iii. 5.)
I found, on searching the Scriptures, that from the commencement  of time, through every age, God continued to send prophets to the peo ple, and always when God had a message for the people, he chose a  special messenger to send it by, and it was always headed with a  “thus saith the Lord.” This was certainly the case in the days of  Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Moses, and so on down to the Apostles, and  Jeremiah declares that the Lord sent them daily.—(Jer. vii. 25.) Now,  if God did these things formerly, why not now? If he supplied every  other age and people with prophets and special messengers, why not  this? Many such reflections passed through my mind. But I was told  that the prophets continued until the Saviour came, but since that  we have had no need of them. On searching the New Testament, I  found that the church had prophets in it after Christ as well as before,  and the Apostle said that God had placed them in it for its benefit.— 1 Cor. xii. Eph. iv. 11, 12.) And the Apostle Peter, in explaining the  prophecy of Joel, said, “And it shall come to pass in the last days,”  (saith God) “I will pour out of my spirit upon all flesh: and your sons  and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see  visions, and your old men shall dream dreams, and on my servants and  on my handmaidens, I will pour out, in those days of my spirit, and  they shall prophecy.”—(Acts ii. 17–20.)
Instead, therefore, of there being no prophets after Christ, it looked  to me as if God meant there should be many; for the assertions are  positive, “that your sons and your daughters shall prophecy,” and  this should be in the last days. Now, if the last days are past and  gone, then we may give up looking for prophets; but if not, then the  promise stands good for more prophets; and if God made this promise  and did actually place prophets in his church, as the Apostles say he  did, I ask by what authority have they been taken out; or who has had  authority, since the Apostles, to alter or change the order which they  established in the church, and certainly prophets constituted a part of  that order. [p. 10]

Chapter 2

CHAPTER II.
 
Investigation—Prophets and Revelations—God the same in all ages—References to Scripture—Conclusion.
 
1st. On the subject of prophets, prophesying, and the gifts of Revelation in modern times.
It was objected, and I admitted, that we had no such things in our day. But what is the reason that we are not to look for them? They certainly were expected in ancient times, and were received. Has God changed? Are the Scriptures false? Has the plan of salvation been altered? Or have we departed from God, transgressed his laws, changed the ordinances and broken the everlasting covenant, as the prophet said?—(Isa. xxiv. 5. Mal. iii. 7.) Or has the time come, spoken of by the Apostle, when men would not endure sound doctrine, but turn their ears from truth, give heed to fables, and heap up to themselves teachers having itching ears, having a form of Godliness, but denying the power.—(2 Tim. iv. 3, 4, and iii. 5.)
I found, on searching the Scriptures, that from the commencement of time, through every age, God continued to send prophets to the people, and always when God had a message for the people, he chose a special messenger to send it by, and it was always headed with a “thus saith the Lord.” This was certainly the case in the days of Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Moses, and so on down to the Apostles, and Jeremiah declares that the Lord sent them daily.—(Jer. vii. 25.) Now, if God did these things formerly, why not now? If he supplied every other age and people with prophets and special messengers, why not this? Many such reflections passed through my mind. But I was told that the prophets continued until the Saviour came, but since that we have had no need of them. On searching the New Testament, I found that the church had prophets in it after Christ as well as before, and the Apostle said that God had placed them in it for its benefit.—1 Cor. xii. Eph. iv. 11, 12.) And the Apostle Peter, in explaining the prophecy of Joel, said, “And it shall come to pass in the last days,” (saith God) “I will pour out of my spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams, and on my servants and on my handmaidens, I will pour out, in those days of my spirit, and they shall prophecy.”—(Acts ii. 17–20.)
Instead, therefore, of there being no prophets after Christ, it looked to me as if God meant there should be many; for the assertions are positive, “that your sons and your daughters shall prophecy,” and this should be in the last days. Now, if the last days are past and gone, then we may give up looking for prophets; but if not, then the promise stands good for more prophets; and if God made this promise and did actually place prophets in his church, as the Apostles say he did, I ask by what authority have they been taken out; or who has had authority, since the Apostles, to alter or change the order which they established in the church, and certainly prophets constituted a part of that order. [p. 10]
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