Minutes and Discourse, , Medina Co., OH, 21 Apr. 1834. Featured version copied [between ca. late Apr. and 5 May 1834] in Minute Book 1, pp. 43–47; handwriting of ; CHL. For more complete source information, see the source note for Minute Book 1.
On 21 April 1834, in , Ohio, JS presided over a of that focused on the necessity of redeeming . This conference had a clear millenarian theme, with sermons indicating that Jesus Christ’s second coming was near and that the inhabitants of the earth needed to repent and gather to Zion in order to be saved. JS and other participants explained that it was imperative for church members to assist the Saints who had been expelled from , Missouri, so Zion could be reclaimed and reoccupied. Such assistance could take two forms: volunteering to go with JS and others on an expedition to or donating money to provision those volunteers. Without such aid, JS stated, Zion would not be redeemed and all of the church would be “persecuted and destroyed in like manner.” JS’s journal notes that “some few volunteered to go to Zion, and others donated $66.37. for the benefit of the scattered breth[r]en in Zion.”
JS also spoke at the conference about some of the foundational events of the church, topics he rarely discussed in public, including the of the Book of Mormon and the “revelation” of both the , or the lesser priesthood, and the . His presentation of these topics largely followed the history he wrote in summer 1832. then spoke on the necessity of redeeming Zion, the construction of the in , Ohio, and the of power that would come after the house was built.
Before the conclusion of the conference, the participants conducted a trial of Thomas Tripp, a church member accused of improprieties with various women. After voting to exclude Tripp from the church, the meeting concluded with the blessing of children by JS and the administration of the . According to JS’s journal, the conference was “a glorious time.”
As clerk of the conference, kept the minutes. later copied the minutes into Minute Book 1.
his coming. There is no part of his creation which will not feel a shock at this grand display of power; for the Ancient saints will reign with christ a Thousand years. The saints will dwell under that reign, and those who are not gathered may expect to endure his wrath that length of time; for the rest of the dead are not to live again till the thousand years are ended. He said that he could deliver a prophecy to the brethren and sisters, not that he stood before them in the attitude of a prophet any farther then he was warranted by the written revelations of God. He said it was in vain for men in this generation to think of laying up and providing inheritances for their children except they laid it up in the place where deliverance was appointed by the voice of God; for those were to be the days of vengeance, as were in the days of Jeremiah; because, before his eyes were closed in death, the Jews were led captives and the land posessed by another people; and so in this day, while the father was laying up Gold for his son, the destroyer may lay him lifeless at his own feet, and where then is all his treasure? Therefore, if we, the Elders islands of the seas, and all the ends of the earth, desire an inheritance for ourselves themselves and their children and our children, it must be obtained where God has appointed the places of delivera[n]ce. He then noticed the former covenants to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob & others of the ancients, which were to be realized in the last days, &c. After which he said there were now three great items which he would proceed to speak upon more particularly at present, which were, The deliverance of Zion. The of the with power from on high according to former promises; and the spreading of the word of the Lord to the four winds. He then took up the first, and gave a hint upon the great weight and importance resting upon the saints [p. 45]
See Revelation 20:5. According to JS and Sidney Rigdon’s report of a vision they experienced in February 1832, those who inherited the telestial kingdom, or the lowest kingdom of glory in the afterlife, would not be “redeemed from the devel untill the last reserection untill the lord even christ the Lamb shall have finished his work.” (Vision, 16 Feb. 1832 [D&C 76:85].)
As with scriptures in the New Testament and Book of Mormon, a March 1831 revelation listed prophesying as a gift of the Spirit. An October 1833 revelation also appointed Rigdon to be “a spokesman unto this people” and “a spokesman unto my servant Joseph.” It stated that Rigdon would have “power to be mighty in expounding all schriptures.” (1 Corinthians 12:10; Book of Mormon, 1830 ed., 586 [Moroni 10:13]; Revelation, ca. 8 Mar. 1831–A [D&C 46:22]; Revelation, 12 Oct. 1833 [D&C 100:9–11].)
As part of his Bible revision, JS added, changed, or clarified material in the Bible according to what he believed was God’s inspiration. Sometime between August 1832 and July 1833, he added to Genesis 50 a lengthy prophecy by Joseph, son of Jacob, that in the last days, God would raise a seer among the scattered tribes of Israel, who would gather them back to the land that was promised to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. (Old Testament Revision 2, pp. 64–65 [Joseph Smith Translation, Genesis 50:24–26]; Faulring et al., Joseph Smith’s New Translation of the Bible, 3–5, 71–72.)
Faulring, Scott H., Kent P. Jackson, and Robert J. Matthews, eds. Joseph Smith’s New Translation of the Bible: Original Manuscripts. Provo, UT: Religious Studies Center, Brigham Young University, 2004.