Note: All pages are published here as images without an accompanying transcript. For transcripts of the revelations, journal entries, and financial records contained in the volume, follow the links in the paragraphs below. Headings accompanying the images include footnotes with links to the transcripts, and readers may use the table of contents in the document viewer to navigate within the volume.
The title “THE BOOK of the LAW of the LORD,” written in ornate style, adorns a ledger-style record book maintained by several of JS’s scribes in , Illinois, between 1841 and 1845. In this volume, JS’s scribes copied nine of his revelations, kept a portion of his journal, and recorded donations made by church members for the construction of the and the (a boardinghouse). For detailed historical introductions to the journal and donations portions of the Book of the Law of the Lord, see the Historical Introductions to Journal, December 1841–December 1842 and Book of the Law of the Lord, Book A.
JS’s scribe copied nine revelations into the volume between January 1841 and his death on 27 August of that year. The record began with the 19 January 1841 revelation commanding the building of the in and the . Six of the nine revelations were later canonized and constitute, in order of their recording by Thompson, sections 124, 125, 105, 111, 87, and 103 in the present Doctrine and Covenants of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
The three other revelations remain uncanonized. One (dated 20 March 1841) concerns the appointment of agents for the Nauvoo House Association. The remaining two, which were received in January 1838 just prior to JS’s abrupt departure from to , deal with questions related to the sustaining of the church’s First Presidency and the protocol for removing them from office in cases of transgression. subsequently made minor revisions to the texts as recorded by . To view images and transcripts of these revelations, along with annotation, see the Documents series on josephsmith papers.org.
The journal portion of the Book of the Law of the Lord comprises a little less than 20 percent of the volume and covers the period 11 December 1841 to 20 December 1842. This material was recorded by , , , and . To view images and transcripts of the journal entries, along with detailed annotation, see Journal, December 1841–December 1842; the entries are also published in full in Journals, Volume 2.
The donation entries comprise approximately 75 percent of the record. They were recorded by , , , John McEwan, , and between late 1841 and 1845. To view images and transcripts of the donation entries, along with annotation, visit Book of the Law of the Lord, Book A. A Nauvoo-era index to the financial records found in the Book of the Law of the Lord can be viewed in the Church History Library catalog.
Journal entries and donation records were kept concurrently in the book, alternating sometimes every other page and chronologically leapfrogging each other. This pattern was especially pronounced near the beginning of the book, where donations and journal entries occasionally appear together on a single page. Over time, however, larger and larger blocks of text were dedicated to either donations or journal entries until the journal was transferred by Richards to another volume, the memorandum book. The donation entries continued in Book of the Law of the Lord, Book A, and Book of the Law of the Lord, Book B.