Note that only the editorial content created specifically for this issue of the Elders’ Journal is annotated here. Articles reprinted from other papers, letters, conference minutes, and notices, are reproduced here but not annotated. Items that are stand-alone JS documents, such as the letter from Wilford Woodruff and others, are annotated elsewhere.
the salvation of Israel; and for one, I pray God to take away my life, sooner than to suffer me to turn my back upon the faithful part of the church of Latter Day Saints, and Joseph whom God hath chosen to lead his people. O my soul mourns over the corruptions of the hearts of men! O how man will stumble in dark places, when he neglects prayer and departs from his God! O ye Saints of Zion, watch and pray, and keep the Celestial law, which is safe!
That you may know the feelings of the undersigners of this page, we say to you before God, that we are in full fellowship with Joseph Smith jr. and the first Presidency of the church, and with all who still adhere to, and receive their teachings and instructions; and we say, in the name of Jesus Christ, that we will uphold such by our prayers, faith, and influence, at the risk of our fortunes, lives, and worldly honor. “For life is but a name, when virtue and truth is gone.”
We further believe that judgment awaits the world speedily, not excepted, and we do believe that those who have dissented from the body of the church, will have cause to lament for their folly. We ask in the name of reason and revelation, who has power to take from Joseph, the keys delivered to him by the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and deprive him of the work that God has said he should perform? We answer, none but God alone. We believe the book of Mormon and Doctrine and Covenants, speaks too loud upon the subject, to fall unfulfilled and to be made void, by those who have neglected prayer, and departed from the living God, and sought to take honor unto themselves. O ye Saints of God in Zion! we entreat you to uphold Joseph by prayer, faith, brotherly love, and charity: for we testify, in the Spirit of God, that he will be brought off conquerer, and his enemies put to shame.
Do you remember his toils and labors for your salvavion? Nothing but a God has supported him to the present day. His perils are great, and the greatest are among false brethren; and we do entreat the Saints in Zion not to add to his wounds, by following the example of many in .— Bear with us, ye Saints of God, while we exhort you to keep the Celestial law of God, while in the land of Zion. Be humble, be watchful, be prayerful. Beware of pride, lest you fall like others. We do not make these remarks for compliment sake, we feel what we say. is and will be scourged, to fulfill revelation and prophecy; it is all right, the hand of God is in it. God’s work will not stop. He will work for, and with his Saints. God will redeem Jacob. God will build up Zion. The Lord will establish Jerusalem. And O ye Judges in Zion! that God may bestow wisdom and salvation upon you, is the prayer of
Sir, your letter, of the 9th of March, directed to , Presidents Joseph Smith jr. , , and the Saints in Zion, came safely to them, some days since. And on account of the press of business now on their hands, and the request of J. Smith Jr., I have taken it upon me to answer it.
You say, that you have heard of the deplorable state of things in ; and it gave me much joy to learn by your letter, that you received those things in their true light. Great has been the afflictions of the Saints in that place, particularly our beloved brethren Joseph Smith Jr. and .
In the past summer, I journeyed from this place, in company with and , to , for the purpose of meeting in Conference there, with the twelve. On our arrival, we soon learned the difficulties that then existed there: these, however, were all apparently settled, previous to my leaving : And , who has since become an unbeliever in revealed religion, affected to repent and become satisfied with Br. Joseph and the church. Others also did the same:— But this settlement was not of long duration. Soon after this, President and , left for the upper ; and President Joseph Smith, President , and , soon followed us to : and during their absence, it seems that , , , , and some others, united together for the overthrow of the church. President Smith, [p. 36]