Discourse, 7 April 1844, as Reported by William Clayton

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Document Transcript

Prest J. Smith called the intention of the con[ference] upon the subject contemplate[d] in the fore part of the con— as the wind blows hard it will be impossib[le] to make hear unless profound attention— Subject of the greatest importance, and most solemn that could occupy our attention the subject of the dead ben requested to speak on the subject on the decease of bro[ther] who was crushed to death &c— I have ben requested to speak by his friends & relatives & inasmuch as great many here in con[gregation]— who live in this as well as elsewhere who have deceased friends feel disposed to speak on the subject in general— and offer my ideas as far as ability— & as far as inspired by H. G. [Holy Ghost] want your prayers faith, the inspirati[o]n of Almighty God, the Gift of H. G. that I may set forth truth things that can easily be comprehended & will carry the testimony to your heart, pray that the L[ord] may strengthe[n] my lungs caml [calm] the wind that it may enter into the ear of the L[or]d of Sabaoth the fervent [p. 11 [23]] effectual prayer of righteo[u]s man availet[h] mach [much]— will speak in order to hold out. Before ente[ring] fully into the investigati[o]n wish to pave the way— make a few prelim[in]aries— bring the subject from th[e] beginning in order that you may understand the subject when I come to it. Do not calculate to please your ears with superfluity of words oratory much learning, but edify you by the simple truths of heaven— first place wish to go back to the beginning of creation, then the starting point in order to fully aquianted [acquainted] with purposes decrees &c of the great Elohem that sits in the h[eavens] for us to take up beginn[in]g at the creati[o]n necessary to understand something of God himself in the beginning. If we start right easy to go right all the time— start wrong hard matter to get right. few beings in the world who understand the character of God and do not comprehend their own character— They cannot com[prehend] from the beginning no the end not the[i]r own relation and is but little above the beast. If a man comprehends nothing more than to eat sleep and and not any more and what the designs of Jehova[h] what better than the beast it does the same thing— eats drink— sleep & comprehends present and knows as much as we unless we are able to com[prehend] by the inspirati[o]n of A[lmighty] God. Go back to begin[nin]g to lift you[r] minds into a more exalted standing than the human mind is wont— want to ask this this congregati[o]n every man, wom[an], &c what kind of a being is God— ask yourselves I repeat the question what kind of a being is God. Any man or woman that kno[ws] any of you seen him? heard him? communed with him? Here a subject that will peradventure occupy you[r] attenti[o]n while you live— The apostle says this is eternal life “to know &c” that is eternal life if any man enquire what kind of being is God. cast his mind to know— if the declarati[o]n of the ap[ostle] be true he will realize that he has not eternal life. There can be eternal life on no other prinicple— 1st of object to find the character of the only wise & true God [p. [12 [24]]]
If I comprehend so that the spirit seal it upon you[r] hearts let every man and woman put his hand on his mouth & never say any thing against the man of God again but if I fail it becomes my duty to renounce all my pretensions to inspirati[o]ns &c and if I should do so should I not be as bad as all the rest of the world. not a man would not breath anathema if they knew I was a false prophe[t] som[e] would take my life. If any man is authorised to take my life because I am a false teacher then upon th[e] sam[e] principle am <​I​> authorised to take the life of every false teache[r] and who would not be the sufferer— but no man is authorised to take away life in consequence of their religion all laws and government ought to tolerate whethe[r] right or wron[g] If I show that I have the truth of God & 99/100 are false teacher[s] while they pretend to hold the keys of God & go to killing them because &c would it not deluge the wo[r]ld in blood. Want you should all [k]now God— be familiar— If I can get you to know I can bring to him, & if as you will cease to persecute me I speak in authority—. What kind of a being was God in the beginning. hear all ye ends of th[e] earth, I am going to prove it by the bible & the relati[o]n the human family sustains with God. 1st. God that sets enthroned is a man like one of yourselves— that is the great secret. If the vail was rent to day & the great god who holds this world in its sphere in its orbit— the planets— if you were to see him to day you would see him in all the person image very form of man. for Adam was created in the very fashion of God. Adam received instruction walked talked as one man with anothe[r]. In order to understand the subject of the ded for the consolation of thos[e] wh[o] mourn for the loss of their friends necessary they should understan[d] Going to tell you how God came to be God. We have imagined that God was God from all eternity. These are incompr[e]hensible to some but are the first principle of the gospel— to know that we may converse with him as one man with another & that he was once as one of us and was on a planet as Jesus was in the flesh [p. 13 [25]]
If I have the privilege could tell the story in such a manner as persecution would cease forever— Said Jesus (mark it ) What did Jesus say— as the father hath had power in himself even so hath the son power. to do what why what the father did To lay down his body and took it up again. Jesus what are you going to do— to lay down my life as my father did that I might take it up again. If you deny it you deny the bible I defy the records and wisdom & all the combined powers of earth and hell to refute it. You have got to learn how to be a god yourself in order to save you[r]self— to be priests Kings as all Gods has done— by going from a small degree to another from exaltation to ex[altation]— till they are able to sit in glory as doth those who sit enthroned. I want you to know while God is being proclaimed that he is not trifling with you nor me. 1st principles of consolation— how consoling to the mourner when calld to part with husband father wife child to know that those being shall rise in immortal glory to sorrow die nor suffer any more. & not only that to contemplate the saying they shall be heirs of God &c— What is it— to inherit the same glory power & exal[ta]tion with those who are gone— before— What did Jesus do— why I do the things that I saw the father do when worlds came into existens— I saw the father work out a kingdom with fear & trembling & I can do the same & when I get my k[ingdom] work I will present to the father & it will exalt his glory and Jesus steps into his tracts to inherit what God did before This is some of the first principles of the gospel about which so much hath been— You have got to find the beginning of the history & go on till you have learned the last— will be a great while before you learn the last. It is not all to be compreh[ende]d in this world. I suppose that I am not allowed to go into an investigati[o]n of any thing that is not in the Bible— you would cry treason so many learned and wise men here [p. 14 [26]]
I will go to the old Bible the very Berosheit. make a comme[n]t on the first sentence of the history of creation— Berosheit Barau want to annalize the word— Ba in by through in & every thing else— rosh— next— the head. sheet where do it come from— when they inspired man wrote it he did not put the Ba. ther[e]— Bu[t] a jew put it there. It read in the first— The head one of the Gods brought forth the Gods— is the true meaning— rosheit signifies to bring forth the Eloheim, Learned man cann[o]t learn any more than what I have told you— hence the head God brought forth the head God in the grand Council— will simplify it in the English language. Ye learned Docters who have persecuted me I want to let you know that the H. G.
The grand councilers set in yonder heavens and contemplated the creation of the worlds that was created at that tim[e]. When I say Doct[o]r & Lawyer I mean the D & L of the scriptures some learned docter might say the scriptures say thus & so and we must believe the scriptures. He referred to an old Book (N. T.) in the Hebrew. Latin German & Greek— find it to be the most correct— find it to correspond with the revelati[o]ns I have recieved.— It tells about Yachaubon the son of Zebedee— means Jacob. the N. T. says James— now if Jacob had the keys you might talk about James and never get the keys. Mathew 4— 21 verse in it gives the word Jacob instead of James— how can we escape the damnati[o]n of hell unless God be with us— men bind us with chains— read from the Hebrew Yongacoub— Jacob.— Greek Ichobon— Jacob— German He has got the oldest book in the world— but he has got the oldest book in his heart. Latin Yacobin— Jacob too— Should not have introduced this testimony were it not to back up the word rosh— The head father of the Gods. When we begin in this way we begin to find out God— what kind a being we have got to worship— when we begin to know how to come to him he begins to come to us. When we are ready to come to him he is ready to receive us. Learned Docters tell us God created the heavens & earth out of nothing they account it blasphemy to contradict the idea— they will call you a fool— you ask they them why they say dont the bible say he created the world & they infer that it must be out of nothing [p. 15 [27]] The word create came from the word Barau— dont mean so— it means to organize— same as a man would use to build a ship— hence we infer that God had materials to organize from— chaos— chaotic matter— element had an existence from the time he had. The pure pure principles of element are principles that never can be destroyed— they may be organized— and reorganized— but not destroyed.
It is as[so]ciated with the subject in question the resurrection of the dead Another subject— the soul— the mind of man— they say God created it in the beginning— the idea lessens man in my estimation. Dont believe the doctrine— know better— God told me so. Make a man appear a fool before he gets through if he dont believe it.
We say that God was selfexistent— who told you so? its correct enough but how did it get into your heads— who told you that man did not exist upon the same principle (— refer to the bible) dont say so in the old Hebrew— God made man out of the earth and put into him his spirit and then it became a living body. The mind of man— the intelligent part is coequal with God himself I know that my testimony is true. hence when I talk to these mourners what have they lost— they are only separated from their bodies for a short season. but their spirit existed coequal with God and they now exist in a place where he they converse together as much as we do on the earth. Is it logic to say that a spirit is immortal and yet have a beginning because if a spirit have a beginning it will have an end— good logic— illustrated by his ring. All the fools learned & wise men that comes and tells that man has a beginning proves that he must have an end. and if that doctrine is true then the doctrine of annihilation is true. But if I am right then I might be bold to say that God never did have power to create the spirit of man at all. He could not create himself— Intelligence exists upon a selfexistent principle— is a spirit from age to age & no creation about it— All the spirits that God ever sent into the world are susceptible of enlargement— That God himself— find himself in the midst of spirit and glory— because he was greater [p. 16 [28]] saw proper to institute laws whereby the rest could have a privilege to advance like himself. I know that when I tell you those words of eternal life that are given to me I know you taste it and I know you believe it. Wants to talk more of the relation of man to God— in relation to your dead. All things whatsoever God has seen proper to reveal to us while we are dwelling in mortality are revealed to us in the abstract & independant of affinity of this mo[r]tal tabernacle— but they are revealed as though we had no bodies at all— tho revealed to our spirits & those revelations must of necessity save our spirits with them. Hence the responsibility— the awful res[ponsibility] that rest upon us in relations to our dead— for all spirits who have not obeyed the gospel in the flesh must obey the gospel or be damned. Is there no preparation— no salvation for our father & friends who have died and not obeyed the decrees of the son of man— Would to God I had 40 days & nights I would let you know that I am not a fallen prophet. what kind of beings can be saved although their bodies are mouldering in the dust. Whe[n] his commandments touch us it is in view of eternity. the greatest responsibility in this world is to seek after our dead— they withou[t] us cannot be made perfect— It is necessary that those who come after us should have salvation in common with us— & thus hath God laid this upon the eves of the world hence the saying of Elijah Speak in relation to the provisions God hath made to suit the conditions of man. What hath Jesus said? All sins & all blasphemis every tran[s]gression except one there is a provision either in this world or in the world of spirit. Hence God hath made a provision that ev[e]ry spirit can be ferreted out in that world that has not sin’d the u[n]pard[o]nabl[e] sin. wether in this world or in the world of spirits. Every man who has a friend in the eternal world who hath not committed the eternal sin unpardonable sin you can save him. A man cannot commit the unpardonable sin after the dissoluti[o]n of the body there is a way for his escape [p. 17 [29]]
knowledge saves a man and in the wo[r]ld of spirits a man cant be exalted but by his knowledge. So long as a man will not give heed to the commandme[n]ts he must abide without salvation. A man is his own torment hence the saying they shall go into the lake that burns with fire &c or as exquisite as a lake &c so is the torment of a man— I said no man could commit the unpardonable sin after the dissolution of the body— hence the salvation that the saviour wrough[t] out for the salvation of a man if it did not catch him in one place it would another— The contenti[o]n in heaven was Jesus said there were certain men would not be saved the devil said he could save them. he rebelled against God and was thrust down. After a man has sinned the sin against the H G. there is no repentance for him. Hence like many of the apostates of the C of J. C. L. D. S. [Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints] they go to[o] far the spirit leaves them hence they seek to kill me they thirst for my blood they never cease— he has got the same spirit that crucified Jesus You cant renew them to repentance— awful is the consequence Advise all to be careful what they do— you may by and by find out that you have been deceived
He continued his discourse— & told of parents receiving their children. Concluded his remarks by Baptism [p. 18 [30]]