Covenant of Oliver Cowdery and Others, 17 October 1830

  • Source Note
  • Historical Introduction

Document Transcript

, Oct. 17, 1830.
I, , being commanded of the Lord God, to go forth unto the , to proclaim glad tidings of great joy unto them, by presenting unto them the fulness of the Gospel, of the only begotten son of God; and also, to rear up a pillar as a witness where the Temple of God shall be built, in the glorious ; and having certain brothers with me, who are called of God to assist me, whose names are , and , do therefore most solemnly covenant before God, that I will walk humbly before him, and do this business, and this glorious work according as he shall direct me by the Holy Ghost; ever praying for mine and their prosperity, and deliverance from bonds, and from imprisonments, and whatsoever may befal us, with all patience and faith.— Amen.
We, the undersigned, being called and commanded of the Lord God, to accompany our Brother , to go to the Lamanites, and to assist in the above mentioned glorious work and business. We do, therefore, most solemnly covenant before God, that we will assist him faithfully in this thing, by giving heed unto all his words and advice, which is, or shall be given him by the spirit of truth, ever praying with all prayer and supplication, for our and his prosperity, and our deliverance from bonds, and imprisonments, and whatsoever may come upon us, with all patience and faith.—Amen.
Signed in presence of
. [p. [1]]


  1. 1

    The recently adopted “Articles and Covenants” of the church declared that the Book of Mormon contained “the fullness of the gospel of Jesus Christ.” (Articles and Covenants, ca. Apr. 1830 [D&C 20:9].)  

  2. 2

    An Ohio correspondent for the Palmyra Reflector claimed that upon the missionaries’ arrival in the West, “Indians followed Cowdery daily, and finally saw him enter the promised land, where he placed a pole in the ground, with a light on its top, to designate the site of the New Jerusalem.” It is uncertain how the reporter would have obtained this knowledge, and none of the participants related such an event. (“Book of Mormon,” Reflector [Palmyra, NY], 14 Feb. 1831, 102, italics in original.)  

    Reflector. Palmyra, NY. 1821–1831.

  3. 3

    See Hebrews 11:36.  

  4. 4

    This language echoes the revelation commanding Peter Whitmer Jr. to accompany Cowdery on the Lamanite mission. (See Revelation, Sept. 1830–D [D&C 30:5–6].)  

  5. 5

    The first two signatories, JS and David Whitmer, were apparently witnesses to the two covenants. Although the newspaper listed their signatures together with those of the other three, who signed the covenant as additional missionaries to the Lamanites, the separation between the two groups was probably clear in the original document.