History, 1838–1856, volume B-1 [1 September 1834–2 November 1838]
JS, History, 1838–1856, vol. B-1, created 1 Oct. 1843–24 Feb. 1845; handwriting of and ; 297 pages, plus 10 pages of addenda; CHL. This is the second volume of a six-volume manuscript history of the church. This second volume covers the period from 1 Sept. 1834 to 2 Nov. 1838; the subsequent four volumes, labeled C-1 through F-1, continue through 8 Aug. 1844.
This document, volume B-1, is the second of the six volumes of the “Manuscript History of the Church.” The collection was compiled over the span of seventeen years, 1838 to 1856. The narrative in volume B-1 begins with the entry for 1 September 1834, just after the conclusion of the Camp of Israel (later called Zion’s Camp), and continues to 2 November 1838, when JS was interned as a prisoner of war at , Missouri. For a fuller discussion of the entire six-volume work, see the general introduction to the history., serving as JS’s “private secretary and historian,” completed the account of JS’s history contained in volume A-1 in August 1843. It covered the period from JS’s birth in 1805 through the aftermath of the Camp of Israel in August 1834. When work resumed on the history on 1 October 1843, Richards started a new volume, eventually designated B-1.At the time of JS’s death in June 1844, the account had been advanced to 5 August 1838, on page 812 of volume B-1. ’s poor health led to the curtailment of work on B-1 for several months, until 11 December 1844. On that date, Richards and , assisted by , resumed gathering the records and reports needed to draft the history. Richards then composed and drafted roughed-out notes while Thomas Bullock compiled the text of the history and inscribed it in B-1. They completed their work on the volume on or about 24 February 1845. Richards, Willmer Benson, and Jonathan Grimshaw later added ten pages of “Addenda,” which provided notes, extensive revisions, or additional text to be inserted in the original manuscript where indicated.Though JS did not dictate or revise any of the text recorded in B-1, and chose to maintain the first-person, chronological narrative format established in A-1 as if JS were the author. They drew from a variety of primary and secondary sources including JS’s diaries and letters, minutes of meetings, the first edition of the Doctrine and Covenants, church and other periodicals, reports of JS’s discourses, and the reminiscences and recollections of church members. As was the case with A-1, after JS’s death, , , , and others modified and corrected the manuscript as they reviewed material before its eventual publication.Beginning in March 1842 the church’s Nauvoo periodical, the Times and Seasons, began publishing the narrative as the “History of Joseph Smith.” It was also published in England in the church periodical the Millennial Star beginning in June 1842. Once a press was established in Utah and the Deseret News began publication, the “History of Joseph Smith” once more appeared in print in serialized form. Beginning with the November 1851 issue, the narrative picked up where the Times and Seasons had left off over five years earlier.The narrative recorded in B-1 continued the story of JS’s life as the prophet and president of the church he labored to establish. The account encompasses significant developments in the church’s two centers at that time—, Ohio, and northwest —during a four-year-span. Critical events included the organization of the Quorums of the Twelve Apostles and the Seventy, the dedication of the House of the Lord in Kirtland, Ohio, the establishment of the Kirtland Safety Society, dissension and apostasy in Kirtland and Missouri, the first mission to England, JS’s flight from Kirtland to Missouri in the winter of 1838, the Saints’ exodus from Kirtland later that year, the disciplining of the Missouri presidency, and the outbreak of the Missouri War and arrest of JS. Thus, B-1 provides substantial detail regarding a significant period of church expansion and transition as well as travail.
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-[Continued from Book A. p. 553.]-
<Sept 1, 1834.> Sept 1st. 1834. I continued to preside over the church in , and in forwarding the building of the . I acted as foreman in the temple stone quarry, and when other duties would permit labored with my own hands,
<Septr 2. Letter from Conference to Elder Cherry.> A conference wrote Bro Cherry, by , clerk, to correct a report that <“>he had been cut off from the church,<”> and encourageing <advising> the brethren not to find fault one with another, after having returned home from such an arduous journey, and their offerings accepted of the Lord; also encourageing him and others to move west.
<4. ’s Covenant.> On the 4th Elder said that if he could obtain the management of his property, in one year he would put it in for the printing of the word of the Lord [HC 2:161]
<8th. Conference Minuts, , O0.> “Minutes of a conference of Elders, at , Ohio, Sept. 8th. 1834. After prayer, President Joseph Smith Jun— and united on and a sick sister, who said she was healed, but requested us to pray that her faith fail not, saying, if she did not not doubt, she [p. 553]
should not be afflicted any more. President Joseph Smith <September 8.> then gave made remarks upon the subject of false spirits. <Conference Minutes at O.> “Elder presented a case which had previously occasioned some difficulty in the church: which was that brother Carpenter had been tried for a fault before the church, and the church gave him a certain time to reflect whether he would acknowledge or not. Brother Gordon, at the time spoke in tongues and declared that brother Carpenter should not have any lenity. wished instruction on this point, whether they had proceeded right or not, as brother Carpenter was dissatisfied. &c.
<Joseph explained Gift of tongues.> “President Joseph Smith then gave an explanation of the gift of tongues: that it was particularly instituted for the preaching of the gospel to other nations and languages, but it was not given for the government of the church. He further said, if brother Gordon introduced the gift of tongues, as a testimony against brother Carpenter, it was contrary to the rules and regulations of the church, because, in all our decisions, we must judge from actual testimony. Elder Gordon said the testimony was had, and the decision given before the gift of tongues was manifested. President Smith advised that we speak in our own language, in all such matters, and then the adversary cannot lead our minds astray.
<’s complaint vs. .> “ stated that when he was presiding in a conference, several of the brethren spake out of order, and Elder refused to submit to order according to his request: and he wished instruction on this point, whether he, or some one else should preside over this branch of the church; and also whether such conduct could be approbated in Conferences. Elder Brother Gordon mad[e] some remarks on the same subject. President Smith said, relative to the first question, that brother gordon’s tongues in the end, did operate as testimony, as, by his remarks in tongues, the former decision was set aside, and his taken; That it was his decision that brother Gor[HC 2:162]don’s manifestation was incorrect, and from a suspicious heart. He approved the first decision but discarded the second. Brother Joseph Keeler acknowledged that in the former decision he had acted hastily himself in urging brother Carpenter to make acknowledgement, without having time to reflect, and asked forgiveness wherein he had erred. Brother Gordon said he discovered that he was in an error and was satisfied with this council, and was willing to ask forgiveness of the brethren and of the Lord.
<Decision, on Question. > Decision was then given on the second question that Elder was out of his place in opposing Elder Palmer, when he presided in the council. The two decisions were confirmed [p. 554]
by unanimous vote of the conference. A motion was then <September 8.> made and passed by unanimous vote, that a letter be written to Brother , informing him of the last decision: That <Conference > he has acted out of place in opposing in a former council, when requested to take his seat, that the business might proceed according to order, and that such letter be signed by <Complaint vs. Milton Stow.> the clerk of this conference. The case of Elder Milton Stow was then presented, when it was proved that he had delivered prophecies, at two different times, which were not true: at one time that in saying that was redeemed; and at another in saying that brother Carpenter was cut off forever, and also in saying that Sister Carpenter was dead: When it was decided by vote <Decision on Stow> that brother Milton Stow be, and by the decision of this conference is, suspended from the priviliges of the , and from acting in the authority of an elder in said Church of Latter Day Saints till he appear before the in , and make proper Satisfaction.= Conference Closed by prayer, , Clerk of Confera.”
The fo[llo]wing Letter was written acording to the instructions of the conference, as recorded in the foregoing minutes.
, Ohio. Sept. 8th 1834
<8. Letter to .> “To a high priest in the Church of the Latter Day Saints.
Dear Brother, Buy By a decision of this conference I am directed to inform you, that a previous difficulty has been presented to this body which arose [HC 2:163] in a former council; between yourself and Elder , informing us, that in a council where presided, according to the office of his appointment, as president of this branch of the Church of the Latter Day Saints, you, when requested by him to be seated, refused to submit to his decision, and spoke disrespectfully of our brother, while acting in his calling, which has occasioned a wound in this conference. It is the decision of this conference that you come before the church, (as you are not present to do it at this conference,) and make the proper confession required in the Law of the Lord. Why I say, disrespectfully, is because when you were requested to be seated and desist speaking, you said you had as much right to speak as he () had.”
, Clerk of Conference”
<10 Minutes of the High Council of Zion> Extracts from the minutes of the of Zion assembled in “ September 10th 1834. The following were chosen to fill the place of absent member for ; for ; for ; for ; for . was ordained to the . A. Letter was read, from President Joseph Smith To , dated 16th of August; also a Petition written by to the [p. 555]
<September 10.> of the State of was read and accepted. , and were appointed <nominated> as first elders to go forth to the , preaching by the way, and if approved by the <Conference Minutes of the High Council of Zion.> Revelator, should be accounted worthy and numbered as such. Decided by the presidents and sanctioned by the council that the first elders go forth as soon as they can get ready and preach by the way to . voted that those elders that came up in the apply for a dismissal, from , and a recommend to , to go forth to preach the gospel. Secretary Pro. Tem.” [HC 2:164]
<24. Minutes of the High Council of .—> “Minutes of a the High Council, September 24th, 1834. Joseph Smith Junr. presiding, assisted by and . Counsellors and were absent. After prayer, the president made some remarks, when the case of was called up to inquire whether under existing circumstances he can fill the office of high-counsellor. It was decided that four counsellors speak on the case, viz. and : and . The counsellors severally spoke in their courses followed by ; after which the assistant presidents spoke, when the president gave a decision, That brother <Decided that be no longer H. Counsellor.> stand no longer a high counsellor, but that he retain the office of high priest, and continue to lift up his voice in the name of Jesus, in preaching the gospel, to which the council assented, and gave his assent with thankfulness.
< appointed high Counsellor.> The president nominated to fill the office vacated by , which was seconded by the clerk. The counsellors voted for the nomination, as also the conference present. The president led in prayer, after which he ordained to the office of high counsellor, pronouncing blessings upon him in the name of the Lord, after which , also blessed his son in the name of the Lord, confirming the same blessing. Elders and were then appointed to fill the vacancies occasioned by the absence of counsellors and . <Committee appointed to compile Doctrine & Covenants, viz— Joseph Smith Jr. , > The council then proceeded to appoint a committee to arrange the items of the doctrine of Jesus Christ, for the government of the Church of Latter Day Saints, which church was organized and commenced its rise, on the 6th. of April 1830. These items are to be taken from the Bible, Book of Mormon, and the revelations which have been given to the church up to this date, or shall be, until such arrangements is are made, Counsellor nominated, <Prest> Joseph Smith Junr, , , and , to compose said Committee; which was seckonded by counsellor . The counsellors then gave their vote in the affirmative, which was also agreed to by the whole conference. [p. 556]
The council then decided that said committee, after arrangeing <September 24.> and publishing said book of covenants, have the avails of the same. The council then decided that a notice be published to <High priests to be ordained at .> the churches and conferences abroad, that high priests be ordained hereafter, in [HC 2:165] the high council at , and receive Licence, signed by the clerk of the council. The council decided that be privileged to make such arrangements with his store, as he shall deem most adviseable, considering his present embarrassed circumstances. Closed by Prayer,
, and Clerks” [HC 2:166]
Great exertions were made to expedite the work of the ; and notwithstanding it was commenced, as it were, with nothing, as to means, yet the way opened as we proceeded, and the saints rejoiced.
<October 1.> The former part of October was spent in arrangeing matters respecting the and the ; for it had previously been published that the “Evening and Morning” Star” would be discontinued, and a new paper, entitled “The Latter Day Saints Messenger and Advocate” issued in its place, [HC 2:167]Having accomplished all that could be done at present, on the 16th. of the <16.. Journey to >month, I in company with my brother and elders , , , and , left for the purpose of visiting some Saints in the state of , where after a tolerably pleasant journey, <20. Conversation with Ellmer> we arrived at Pontiac on the 20th.. While on our way up the Lake, on board the steamer “Munroe” had a short discourse with a man calling himself his name Elmer. He said he was “personally acquainted with “Joe” Smith; “had heard him preach his lies, [HC 2:168] and now since he was dead he was glad! The He had heard Joe Smith preach in , Chenango County, New York, five years since; he knew it to be him, that he was a dark complexioned man” &c. He appeared to exult the most in that Joe was dead, <and made his observations in my presence> I con[c]luded he had learned it from the popular Priests of the day, who, through fear that therir craft will be injured, if their systems are compared with the truth. seek to ridicule those who teach it, and thus am I suffering under the tongue of Slander for Christ’s sake, unceasingly. God have mercy on such, if they will quit their lying. I need not state my complexion to those who have seen me, and those who have read my history thus far will recollect that five years ago I was not a preacher, as Ellmer represented, neither was I <Return to > ever in . After preaching, and teaching the saints as Long as our time would allow, we returned to greatly refreshed from our journey, and much pleased with our friends in that section of the Lord’s vineyard. It now being the last of the month, and the elders beginning to come in, it was necessary to make preperations for the of for the Elders, wherein they might be more perfectly instructed, in the great [p. 557] things of God during the coming winter. A building for a <October> was nearly finished, and the lower story of this building was set apart for that pur[HC 2:169]pose <(the school)> when it was completed. So the Lord opened the way according to our faith and works, and blessed be his name.
<November.> No month ever found me more busily engaged than November; but as, my life consisted of activity and unyielding exertion, I made this my rule, when the Lord commands, do it. Among other matters the following lettre was sent to , Brownhelm, Ohio, by order of the High Council.
<10.>“ November 10th 1834.”
“Dear Brother, There having been serious complaints presented to us against you, we sincerely request you to come to , immediately, as it will be necessary that a proper notice be taken of the same. We do not write the above with a view to accuse, ourselves; but you know the great responsibility resting upon us, and the propriety of noticing charges, especially when they are preferred against men in important and interesting stations in the church of the saints. We have truly written the above with feelings of deep interest for your own welfare and standing in the church; and we do hope you will not fail to come down immediately, as the representations made to us will require immediate notice. It is necessary for us to inform you, that until you appear and make the satisfaction requisite, you are suspended from acting in the authority of the office to which you have <been> previously ordained.
With feelings of respect, we subscribe ourselves your brethr[e]n in the New covenant. Joseph Smith, Junr, , clerk of the High Council.”
I continued my labors daily, preparing for the school, &c and received the following
<25 Revelation Concerning .> Revelation, Given November 25th 1834.
1. It is my will that my servant, should be appointed and ordained a presiding high priest over my church in the land of and the regions round about, [HC 2:170] and should preach my everlasting gospel and lift up his voice and warn the people, not only in his own place, but in the adjoining countries, and devote his whole time in this high and holy calling which I now give unto him, seeking diligently the kingdom of heaven and its righteousness, and all things necessary shall be added thereunto; for the laborer is worthy of his hire.
2. And again, verily I say unto you, the coming of the Lord draweth nigh, and it overtaketh the world as a theif in the night; therefore, gird up your loins that you may be the children of the light, and that day shall not overtake you as a theif. [p. 558]
<November 25.> 3. And again, verily I say unto you, there was joy in heaven when my servant bowed to my scepter and seperated himself from the crafts of men; therefore, blessed is my servant , for I will have mercy on him, and notwithstanding the vanity of his heart I will lift him up inasmuch as he will humble himself before me; and I will give him grace and assurance wherewith he may stand; and if he continues to be a faithful witness and a light unto the church, I have prepared a crown for him in the mansions of my Father; even so: amen.
The same day, Hon. J. T. V. Thompson, state Senator wrote , at . as follows.
<J. T. V. Thompson’s Letter to .> “.” Dear Sir, I will say to you that your case with the people has been mentioned to the highest officer of the State, the . He speaks of it in his message, and so much of his message will be referred to a committee. I am not able to say what will be their report, but I will write you again.. I have the honor &c. J. T. V. Thompson.”
The following is that portion if the ’s Message referred to in the foregoing letter.
<Extract from the Governor’s Message> “In July, 1833, a large portion of the citizens of organized themselves, and entered in resolutions to expel from that county, a religious sect called Mormons, who had become obnoxious to them. In November following they effected their object, not however without the loss of several lives. [HC 2:171] In the judicial enquiry into these outrages, the civil authorities who had cognizance of them, deemed it proper to have a military guard for the purpose of giving protection during the progress of the trials. This was ordered, and the Attorney General was requested to give his attention during the investigation, both of which were performed, but all to no purpose. As yet none have been punished for these outrages, and it is believed that under our present laws, conviction for any violence committed against a Mormon, cannot be had in . These unfortunate people are now forbidden to take possession of their homes; and the principal part of them, I am informed, are at this time living in an adjoining county, in a great measure, upon the charity of its citizens. It is for you to determine what amendments the laws may require so as to guard against such acts of violence for the future.”
<28. Minutes of a council> “ November 28th” Minutes of a council. “A council convened this evening, to transact business according to the regulations of the church. Joseph Smith Junr and , presiding. eight counsellors present. and were appointed to speak.
<Letter from the Church in , acted upon> A letter from the church in , Essex County, New York, was presented by brethren and and read by the , said letter contained an account of money and other property, sent by the church in , [p. 559]
<November 28.> in the care of said elders Brethren to carry to to purchase land. These elders wished the advice of the council whether they had better pursue their journey or not. The two counsellors spoke on the case, followed by , counselor , and the ; after which gave a decision; that after our brethren be advised to tarry in this <Decision> place during the winter, in which the council concurred, The two elders Brethren then arose respectively and said they were perfectly satisfied with the decision of the council. The amount donated by the church in , is, according to their letter, in cash, is four hundred and seventy three dollars, and twenty nine cents. The amount in “Star” property is three hundred and seventy five dollars, and eleven cents.— aggregate $448,40 $848.40
The council then decided that President Joseph Smith junr. take such amount of said money as those brethren can part with for the present, by giving sufficient s[e]curity, to be paid with interest by the 15th of April 1835. It was ascertained by the council that Sister Caroline Tippits held $149.75 of the money mentioned in said letter, she was accordingly called into the Council and expressed a willingness to loan the same. [HC 2:172] One note of two hundred eighty dollars was drawn in favor of ; and another of one hundred and fifty dollars in favor of Caroline Tippits, due, each, April 15th. 1835, signed by Joseph Smith Junr. , and .— Clerk”
The following letter was presented by and formed the subject of the preceding council, Written to President Joseph Smith Junior, and the high council in By , to be sent greeting.
<Letter from to J. Smith, and H. Council.> President Smith will recollect the time I left last winter, in order to come for to dispose of the property I had in possession, which I have been striving to do ever since from that time till about the first of September last: But I have felt very uneasy while the commandment has gone forth for the eastern churches to flee unto the west. The first, or about the first of September, I with two of my brethren, took the revelation concerning the redemption of , and read it, and then we agreed to ask god to enable us to obey the same, as we live in the eastern states. Our minds lit over these important lines, therefore a commandment I give unto all the churches, that they shall continue to gather together unto the places which I have appointed, nevertheless, as I have said unto you in a former commandment, let not your gathering be in haste nor by flight, but let all things be prepared before you, observe the commandments which I have given concerning these things, which saith or teacheth to purchase all the lands by money which can be purchased for money, in the region round [p. 560]
about the land which I have appointed to be the land of <November.> , for the beginning of the gathering of my saints, all the land which can be purchased in and the <Letter.> counties round about, and leave the residue in mine hand. Now verily I say unto you let all the churches gather together all their moneys, let these things be done in their time, be not in haste, and observe to have all things prepared before you, and let honorable men be appointed, even wise men, and send them to purchase these lands; and every church in the eastern countries, when they are built up, if they will hearken unto this council, they may buy lands and gather together upon them, and in this way they may establish Zion.
And after further consideration and much prayer, we carried the case before the church in this place, which met the approbation of the same. [HC 2:173] Accordingly we strove to become of one heart and one mind, appointed a day for fasting and prayer, and asked the Lord to enable us to collect all our moneys, and appointed a day for the church to come together for council. Accordingly we came together, and after conversation, chose a moderator and clerk to keep the records of the church; counselled together to concerning property owned by the church; and commenced to make sale, and collect pay according to the voice of the church, in order to collect all moneys owned by the church, and send by the hands of wise men, who were appointed by the voice of the church; one Elder and one Priest, according to the will of God. .”
<Doings of the Church in . (Oct 20)> “, county of Essex, New-york, October 20th 1834.
A branch of the church of the Latter Day Saints, agreeable to the requirements of heaven, have strove to unite their hearts and views in order to be found spotless before the blazing throne of the great Jehovah when he comes to make up his jewels, and for this end do send property by the hands of wise men, appointed by the voice of the church, (agreeable to the revelation concerning the redemption of Zion,) for the purpose of purchasing land in , or counties round about, for the inheritance of the church. Agreeable to this we give our names, with the affix sums, annexed”
<Funds sent up to purchase lands>
|Henry Adams||11||13||8||75||Gustavus A. Perry||00||00||06||00|
Aggregate Eight hundred forty eight dollars and forty cents; one hundred dollars to be left in in boots and shoes.
<Names of wise men> The wise men appointed are and .”
<29> On the evening of the 29th of November, I united in prayer with , for the continueance of [HC 1:174] blessings, after giving thanks [p. 561] for the relief which the Lord had lately sent us by opening the <November 29.> hearts of the brethren from the east, to loan us four hundred and thirty dollars. After commencing and rejoicing before the Lord in this occasion, we agreed to enter into the following covenant with the Lord: viz.—
<Covenant of Joseph & .> That if the Lord will prosper us in our business, and open the way before us, that we may obtain means to pay our debts, that we be not troubled nor brought into disrepute before the world, nor his people, after that of all that he shall give us, we will give a tenth, to be bestowed upon the poor in his church, or, as he shall command; and that we will be faithful over that which he has committed entrusted to our care that we may obtain much; And that our children after us shall remember to observe this sacred and holy covenant; and that our children and our children’s children may know of the same, we have subscribed our names with, our own hands. (Signed) Joseph Smith Junr. <A Prayer.> .— And now O, Father, as thou didst prosper our Father Jacob, and bless him with protection and prosperity whereever he went, from the time he made a like Covenant before and with thee; as as thou didst, even the same night, open the heavens unto him and manifest great mercy and power, and give him promises, So wilt thou do by us his sons; and as his blessings prevailed above his progenitors unto the utmost bounds of the everlasting hills, even so may our blessings prevail like his; and may thy servants be preserved from the power and influence of wicked and unrighteous men; may every weapon formed against us fall upon the head of him who shall form it; may we be blessed with a name and a place among thy Saints here, and thy sanctified when they shall rest. Amen.
<30.> While reflecting upon the goodness and mercy of God, this evening, (November 30,) a prophecy was put into our hearts, that in a short time, the Lord would arrange his providences in a merciful manner, and send us assistance to deliver us from debt and bondage.
<December 1. Elders school, and Lectures> December 1. Our school for the elders was now well [HC 2:175] attended, and, with the lectures on theology, which were regularly delivered, absorbed, for the time being, every thing <else> of a temporal nature, The classes, being mostly elders, gave the most studious attention to the all important object, of qualifying themselves, as messengers of Jesus Christ, to be ready to do his will, on in carrying glad tidings to all that would open their eyes, ears and hearts. According to the direction of the holy Spirit, (on the evening <5.> of the 5th. as while assembled with , , and , conversing upon the welfare of the church,) I laid my hands on brother , and ordained him an [p. 562] assistant president saying these words; In the name of Jesus <December 5. ordained At. Prest.> Christ who was crucified for the sins of the world, I lay my hands upon thee, and ordain thee an assistant president to the high and holy priesthood in the church of the Latter Day Saints. [HC 2:176]
<11. Letter to Thompson.> On the 11th. wrote from , clay county, To J. T. V. Thompson— , (in reply to his letter of the 25th. November,) expressive of thankfulness to his for introducing the sufferin[g] of the Saints in his Message; also asking counsel, “whether it would avail any thing for the Society to petition his honorable body, (the Legislature) for an act to re-instate them in their rights” &c. and requesting him to confer with his friends and his excellency and on the subject, and give an early answer.
About the middle of the month the message of of , <to the legislature,> -[see p. 559.]- arrived at , was read with great interest, and revived the hopes of the church for the scattered brethren of .
<18. Letter to Thompson> wrote again to esquire Thompson, on the 18th. as follows,
“Dear Sir, By this mail I have forwarded to of the lower house, a petition and documents, on the subject of our rights in . He will hand them to you for the Senate, when through in the House, I shall be greatly obliged if you lay them before your honorable body; and any information [HC 2:177] you may require, or even personal attendance, write, and you shall not have it if in my power. As a people, all we ask is our rights, with esteem &c. .—
<20 Thompson & ’s Letter to .> On the 20th. Messrs Thompson and , wrote from the “Senate “Chamber,” acknowledging the receipt of his letter, stating that the committee on the Message had not reported, and recommending the saints to get up a petition to the Legislature with as m[an]y signers as possible, promising their assistance and influence to obtain redress of grievance.
A petition was accordingly forwarded, but the year closed without bringing any thing to pass for the relief of the saints in . [HC 2:178]
<January Lectures on Theology.> During the month of January I was engaged in the school of the elders, and in preparing the Lectures on Theology for publication in the Book of Doctrine and covenants, which the committee appointed last September, were now compililing. Certain brethren from Bolton, New York, came for council, relative to their proceeding to the west, and <Council 18.> the High council assembled on the 18th.. After a long investigation, I decided that assist with his might to build up the cause by tarrying in , which decision received the unanimous vote of the council.
<February.> The school still continued, and arrangements were also made, according to the Revelation of June 1829, for choosing “the twelve” [p. 563] to be especial messengers to bear the gospel among all nations, <Note A Addenda p 1> [HC 2:180] The following are the minutes of the proceedings.
<February. 14 Minutes of a Meeting to choose the “Twelve.”> “, February “14th. 1835. This day a meeting was called of those who journeyed to for the purpose of laying the foundation of its redemption last season, together with as many others of the brethren and sisters as were disposed to attend. President Joseph Smith Junr. presiding, read the 15th. chapter of John and said let us Endeavor to solemnize our minds that we may receive a blessing by calling on the Lord; and after an appropriate and [HC 2:181] affecting prayer, the brethren who went to Zion were requested to take their seats together in a part of the house by themselves. President Smith then stated that the meeting had been called because God had commanded it, and it was made known to him by vision and by the Holy Spirit. He then gave a revelation of some of the circumstances attending us while journeying to Zion, our trials, sufferings, &c, &c,— and said God had not designed all this for nothing, but he had it in remembrance yet; and those who went to Zion, with a determination to lay down their lives, if necessary, it was the will of God that they should be ordained, to the ministry, and go forth to prune the vineyard for the last time, or the Coming of the Lord which was nigh even fifty six years should wind up the scene. The President also said many things, such as the weak things, even the smallest and weakest among us, shall be powerful and mighty, and great things shall be accomplished by you from this hour; and you shall begin to feel the whisperings of the Spirit of God, and the work of God shall begin to break forth from this time, and you shall be endowed with from with power from on high. President Smith then called upon all those who went to Zion, if they were agreed with him in the statement which he had made, to arise; and they all arose and stood upon their feet. He then called upon the remainder of the congregation to know if they also sanctioned the movements, and they all raised the right hand. [HC 2:182] The names of those who went to Zion in the camp, are, in part, as follows;
<Names, in part, of those who went up to Zion.>
|Joseph Smith Junrr||1.||12.||23.|
|2.||13.||Lebbeus T. Coon [Libbeus Coons]||24.|
|5.||,||16.||James L. Thompson||27.|
|Jesse B. Smith||6.||17.||Henry Shibley||28.|
|9.||Alden Burdick||20.||Darwin Richardson||31.|
[HC 2:183] [HC 2:184] [p. 564]
<Note B. Addenda page 1)> [HC 2:185]
<Adjournment.> A hymn was then sung “Hark listen to the trumpeters,” &c. President prayed, and meeting was dismissed for one hour.
“Assembled pursuant to adjournment, and commenced with prayer. President Joseph Smith Junr said that the first business of the meeting was for the three Witnesses of the Book of Mormon to pray, each [HC 2:186] one, and then proceed to choose twelve men from the church as Apostles to go to all nations, kindreds, tongues and people. The three Witnesses, viz, , , and , united in prayer. These three witnesses were then blessed by the laying on of the hands of the Presidency. They witnesses, then, according to a former commandment, proceeded to make choice of the Twelve. Their names are as follows:
<Names of the Twelve.—>
, and came forward, and the three witnesses laid their hands upon each one’s head and prayed, separately. [HC 2:187]
<Blessing of . 1.> The Blessing of was in the name of Jesus Christ, that he should bear the tidings of Salvation to nations tongues and people, until the utmost corners of the earth shall hear the tidings, and that he shall be a witness of the things of God to nations and tongues, and that holy angels shall administer to him occasionally, and that no power of the enemy shall prevent him from going forth and doing the work of the Lord; and that he shall live until the gathering is accomplished according to the holy prophets; and that he should be like unto Enoch; and his faith shall be like unto his his, and he shall be called great among all the living; and satan shall tremble before him, and he shall see the savior come and stand upon the earth with power and great glory.
<Blessing of . 2> The Blessing of was, That he should be strong in body, that he might go forth and gather the Elect preparatory to the great day of the coming of the Lord, and that he might be strong and mighty declaring the tidings to nations that know not God, that he may add ten talents, that he may come to Zion with many sheaves. He shall go forth from land to land and from Sea to Sea, and shall behold heavenly [p. 565]
messengers going forth, and his life shall be prolonged, and <February 14.> the holy [HC 2:188] Priesthood is confirmed upon him that he may do wonders in the name of Jesus, that he may cast out Devils heal the sick, raise the dead, open the eyes of the blind, go forth from land to land and from sea to sea, and that heathen nations shall even call him God himself if he do not rebuke them.
<’s Blessing. 3> ’s blessing was in substance, That he shall be made like unto those who have been blessed before him and be favored with the same blessing. That he might receive visions, the ministration of angels and hear their voice, and even come into the presence of God. That many millions may be converted by his instrumentality, that angels may waft him from place to place, and that he may stand unto the coming of our Lord, and receive a crown in the kingdom of our Lord, that he be made acquainted with the day when Christ shall come, that he shall be made perfect in faith and that the deaf shall hear, the lame shall walk, the blind shall see, and greater things than these shall he do, that he shall have boldness of speech before the nations and great power, &c.
A hymn was then sung, “glorious things of thee are spoken,” &c, and the congregation dismissed by President J. Smith Junr.
<15.> Sunday, February 15th the congregation again assembled. made some observations upon the nature of the meeting, calling upon the Lord for his assistance, &c, after which a number of certificates were read and accepted from brethren who had recently returned from . then called forward , and , and proceeded to their ordination and blessings
<’s 4 Blessing.—> ’s blessing. called upon the Lord to smile upon him, that his faith shall be made perfect, and that the blessings pronounced shall be realized. He shall be made ready mighty and be endued with power from on high and go forth to the nations of the earth to proclaim the gospel. That he shall escape all the pollutions of the world, the angels shall uphold him, and that he shall go forth according to the commandment, both to Jews and Gentiles and shall go to all nations kingdoms and tongues. All who hear his voice shall acknowledge him to be a servant of God. He shall be equal in holding the keys of the Kingdom. He shall stand on the earth and bring souls till Christ comes. We know that he loves thee. And may this thy [HC 2:189] servant be able to walk through pestilence and not be harmed. The powers of darkness shall have no ascendancy over him. He shall have power to smite the earth with pestilence, to divide waters and lead through [p. 566]
the Saints. He shall go from land to land, and from sea <February 15 >to sea. He shall be like one of the three Nephites
<’s Blessing. 5> ’s blessing. O God, give this thy servant, a knowledge of thy will; that he be like one of old who bore testimony of Jesus. May he be a new man from this day forth. He shall be equal with his brethren, the twelve, and have all the qualifications of the prophets before him. May his body be strong and never be weary; may he walk and not faint. May he have power over all diseases, and faith according to his desires. May the heavens be opened upon him speedily, that he may bear testimony from knowledge, that he may go to nations and isles afar off. May he have a knowledge of the things of the kingdom from the beginning, and be able to tear down priestcraft like a lion. May he have power to smite his enemies before him, with utter destruction. May he continue till the Lord comes. O Father we seal these blessings upon him, even so; amen.
<’s Blessing. 6> ’s blessing. Our Father in heaven, look down in Mercy upon us, and upon this thy servant, whom we ordain to the ministry of the Twelve. He shall be prepared and preserved, and be like those we have blessed before him. The nations shall tremble before him. He shall hear the voice of God; he shall comfort the hearts of the saints always. The angels shall bear him up till he shall finish his ministry. He shall be delivered and come forth with Israel. He shall bear testimony and come forth to the kings of the earth, and hold communion with the Father, with the Son, and with the general Assembly and Church of the first born. If cast into prison he shall be able to comfort the hearts of his brethren comrades. His tong[u]e shall be loosed and he shall have power to lead many to Zion, and sit down with them, and the Ancient of Days shall pronounce this blessing that he has been faithful. He shall have strength wisdom and power; he shall go among the covenant people, and speak all their tongues where he shall go. All these blessings we confirm upon him in the name of Jesus, Amen.
<s Blessing 7> ’s Blessing. In the name of the Lord wisdom and intelligence shall be poured out upon him, to enable him to perform the great work, that is encumbent upon him: That he may be spared until the saints are gathered, that he may stand before kings and rulers to bear testimony, and be upheld by holy angels, and the nations of the earth shall acknowledge that God has sent him. He shall have power to overcome his enemies, and his life shall be spared in the midst of pestilence and destruction, and in the midst of his enemies. He shall be a [HC 2:190] prince and a savior to God’s people. The tempter shall not overcome him, nor his enemies prevail against him. The heavens shall [p. 567]
be opened unto him, as unto men in days of old. He <February 15.> shall be mighty in the hands of God, and shall convince thousands that God has sent him, and his days may be prolonged until the coming of the Son of man. He shall be wafted as on Eagles wings, from country to country, and from people to people, and be able to do wonders in the midst of this generation. Even So amen.
<’s Blessing. 8> ’s Blessing. Thou hast prevailed and thou shalt prevail, and thou shalt declare the gospel unto many nations. Thou shalt be made mighty before God, and although thou shalt be cast out from the face of men, yet thou shalt have power to prevail, thou shalt lead the Elect triumphantly to the place of refuge. Thou shalt be like thy brethren who have been blessed before thee. Thou shalt stand in that day of calamity when the wicked shall be consumed. and present unto the Father, spotless, the fruits of thy labor. Thou shalt overcome all the evils that are in the world. Thou shalt have wisdom to put to silence all the wisdom of the wise, and thou shalt see the face of thy redeemer in the flesh. These blessings are pronounced and sealed upon thee, even so. Amen.
<’s Blessing. 9.> ’s Blessing. That he may be purified in heart, that he may have communion with God. That he may be equal with his brethren in holding the keys of this ministry. That he may be kept and be instrumental in leading Israel forth; that he may be delivered from the hands of those who seek to destroy him; that he may be enabled to bear testimony to the nations, that Jesus lives. That he may stand in the midst of pestilence and destruction. He shall be mighty in the hands of God in bringing about the restoration of Israel. The nations shall rejoice at the greatness of the gifts which God has bestowed upon him; That his tongue shall be loosed. That he shall have power to <do> great things in the name of Jesus. He shall be preserved and remain on the earth. until Christ shall come to take vengeance on the wicked.
<21. Meeting.> February 21st. 1835. Persuant to adjournment A Meeting of the church was held, and after prayer by president , and a short address, by president , to the congregation Elder was called to the stand, and ordained one of the twelve by president Joseph Smith Junr., , and .
<s’ Blessing.> ’s Blessing, by . O Lord, smile from heaven upon this thy servant, forgive his sins, sanctify his heart, and prepare him to receive the blessing. Increase his love for thee and <for> thy cause. Increase his inteligence, communicate to him all that wisdom, that prudence, and that understanding [p. 568]
which he needs as a minister of righteousness, and to magnify [HC 2:191] <February 21> the Apostleship whereunto he is called. May a double portion of that Spirit which was communicated to the Disciples of our Lord and Savior to lead them into all truth, rest down upon him, and go with him where he goes, that nothing shall prevail against him that he may be delivered from prisons, from the power of his enemies, and from the adversary of all righteousness. May he be able to mount up on wings as an eagle, to run and not be weary, to walk and not faint. May he have great wisdom and inteligence and be able to lead thine Elect through this thorny maze Let sickness and death have no power over him. Let him be equal with his brethren in bringing many sons and daughters to glory and many nations to a knowledge of the truth. Great blessings shall rest upon thee. Thy faith shall increase. Thou shalt have great power to prevail. The veil of the heavens shall be roled up: thou shalt be permitted to gaze within it, and receive instruction from on high. No arm that is formed and lifted against thee, shall prosper, no power shall prevail, for thou shalt have power with God, and shall proclaim his gospel. Thou wilt be afflicted but thou shalt be delivered, and conquer all thy foes. Thine office shall never be taken from thee. Thou shalt be called great. Angels shall carry thee from place, <to place.> Thy sins are forgiven, and thy name written in the Lamb’s book of life; even so, Amen.
<Charge, by . to .> I am aware, Dear , that the mind naturally claims something new, but the same thing, rehearsed frequently, profits us. You will have the same difficulties to encounter, in fulfilling this ministry that the ancient Apostles had. You have enlisted in a cause that requires your whole attention, you ought, therefore, to count the cost, and become a polished shaft, you must be sensible, requires the labor of years; and your station requires a perfect polish. It is required not merely to travel a few miles in this country, but in distant countries. You must endure much labor, much toil, and many privations to become perfectly polished. Your calling is not like that of the husbandman to cultivate a stinted portion of the planet on which we dwell, and when heaven has given the former and the Latter rain, and mellow autumn ripened his fruits, gather it in and congratulate himself for a season, in the remission of his toils, while he anticipated his winter evenings of relaxation and fireside enjoyments.
But, Dear , it is far otherwise with you. Your labor must be incessant, and your toil great. You must go forth and labor till the great work is done. It will require a series of years to accomplish it: But you will have this pleasing consolation, that your Heavenly Father requires it, the field is his the work is his, and he will not [HC 2:192] only cheer you, animate you, and buoy you up in your pilgrimage, in [p. 569]
your arduous toils, but when your work is done, and your <February 21.> labor o’er, he will take you to himself. But before this consummation of your felicity, bring your mind to bear upon what will be imperiously required of you to accomplish the great work that lies before you. Count well the cost. You have read of the trials and persecutions of ancient days. Has not bitter experience taught you that they are the same now? You will be dragged before the authorities for the religion you profess, and it were better not to set out than to start, look back, or shrink when dangers thicken upon, or appaling death stares you in the face. I have spoken these things, Dear Brother, because I have seen them in visions. There <are> strong dungeons and gloomy prisons for you. These should not appall you. You must be called a good or bad man. The ancients passed th[r]ough the same. They had this testimony that they had seen the Savior after he rose from the dead. You must bear some testimony or your mission, your labor, your toil will be in vain. You must bear the same testimony, that there is but one God; one mediator; he that has seen him will know him, and testify of him. Beware of Pride, beware of evil; shun the very appearance of it, for the time is coming when if you do not hear to these things, you will have a fall. Among your many afflictions you will have many blessings also. but you must pass through many afflictions in order to receive the glory that is in reserve for you. You will see thousands, who, when they first see you, will know nothing about salvation by Jesus Christ; You shall see a nation born in a day. A great work lies before you, and the time is near, when you must bid farewell to your native land, cross the mighty deep, and sound the tocin of alarm to other nations, kindreds, tongues and people. Remember that all your hopes of deliverance from danger and from death, will rest upon your faithfulness, to God in his cause. You must necessarily serve him with a perfect heart and a willing mind. Avoid strife and vain glory, think not yourself better than your brethren, but pray for them, as well as for yourselves yourself, and if you are faithful, great will bee your blessings, but if you are not your stewardship will be taken from you, and another appointed in your stead
gave his hand to President and said he had received ordination, and should fulfil the ministry according to the grace given him: To which the president replied. Go forth and angels shall bear thee up, and thou shalt come forth at the last day bringing many with thee.
<570 Error in date of ordination>
<Note C. Addenda pag[e] 1> [HC 2:193]
<’s Blessing.> ’s Blessing, by president . Dear Brother, you are to be a minister of righteousness, and to [p. 570]
this ministry and Apostleship you are now to be ordained, <February 21.> and may all temporal and spiritual blessings attend you. Your sins are forgiven you and you are to go forth and preach the everlasting gospel. You shall travel from kingdom to kingdom, and from nation to nation. Angels shall bear thee up and thou shalt be instrumental in bringing thousands of the redeemed of the Lord to Zion. Sealed by president . even so, Amen.
<’s Blessing.> ’s Blessing. Dear Brethren Brother you are chosen and set apart to be ordained to this Apostleship and this ministry. You shall go forth and preach the gospel and do a mighty work. You shall be sustained. The Holy Spirit shall enlighten thy mind. Thou shalt travel from nation to nation. The Lord God shall sustain preserve thee and return thee safe, with songs of everlasting joy upon thy head. Confirmed by president .
The following charge was given to the twelve by president .
<Charge to the Twelve by .—> Dear Brethren, previously to delivering the charge, I shall read a part of a revelation. It is known to you that previous to the organizing of this church in 1830, the Lord gave Revelations or the church could not have been organized. The people of this church were weak in faith compared with the ancients. Those who embarked in this cause were desirous to know how the work was to be conducted. [HC 2:194] They read many things in the Book of Mormon, concerning their duty, and the way the great work ought to be done, but the minds of men are so constructed, that they will not believe without a testimony of seeing or hearing. The Lord gave us a revelation, that in process of time there should be twelve men chosen to preach his gospel to Jew and Gentile. Our minds have been on a constant stretch, to find whose these twelve were. When the time should come we could not tell, but we sought the Lord by fasting and prayer, to have our lives prolonged to see this day, to see you and to take a retrospect of the difficulties through which we have passed, but, having seen the day, it becomes my duty to deliver to you a charge: and first, a few remarks respecting your ministry. You have many revelations put into your hands: Revelations to make you acquainted with the nature of your Mission. You will have difficulties by reason of your visiting all the nations of the world. You will need wisdom in a ten fold proportion to what you have ever had. You will have to combat all the prejudices of all nations. He then read from the Revelation, and said, have you desired this ministry with all your hearts? If you have desired it, you are called of God, not of man, to go into all the world. He read again, from the Revelation, what the Lord said to the [p. 571]
Twelve. Brethren you have your duty presented in this <February 21. Charge to the Twelve.> Revelation. You have been ordained to the Holy Priesthood. You have received it from those who had their power and authority from an angel. You are to preach the gospel to every nation; Should you in the least degree come short of your duty, great will be your condemnation, for the greater the calling the greater the condemnation transgression. I, therefore, warn you to cultivate great humility, for I know the pride of the human heart. Beware lest the flatterers of the world lift you up Beware lest your affections are captivated buy by worldly objects. Let your ministry be first. Remember the souls of men are committed to your charge, and if you mind your calling you shall always prosper. You have been indebted to other men, in the first instance for evidence, on that you have acted. But it is necessary that you receive a testimony from heaven, for yourselves, so that you can bear testimony to the truth of the Book of Mormon, and that you have seen the face of God. That is more than the testimony of an angel. When the proper times arrives, you shall be able to bear this testimony to the world. When you bear testimony that you have seen God, This testimony God will never suffer to fall, but will bear you out, although many will not give heed, yet others will. You will therefore see the necessity of getting this testimony from heaven. Never cease striving till you have seen God, face to face, Strengthen your faith cast off your doubts, your sins and all your unbelief, and [HC 2:195] nothing can prevent you from coming to God. Your ordination is not full and complete till God has laid his hand upon you. We require as much to qualify us as did those who have gone before us. God is the same. If the Savior in former days laid his hands on his disciples why not in latter days? With regard to superiority I must make a few remarks. The Ancient Apostles sought to be great, but brethren lest the seeds of discord be sown in this matter understand particularly the voice of the Spirit on this occasion. God does not love you better or more than others. men. You are to contend for the faith once delivered to the saints. Jacob, you know, wrestled till he obtained. It was by fervent prayer and diligent search that you have obtained the testimony you are now able to bear. You are as one, you are equal in bearing the keys of the kingdom to all nations. You are called to preach the gospel of the Son of God to the nations of the earth. It is the will of your Heavenly Father that you proclaim his gospel to the ends of the earth, and the Islands of the sea. Be zealous to save souls. The soul of one man is as precious as the soul of another. You are to bear this [p. 572]
message to those who consider themselves wise, and such may <February 21. Charge to the Twelve.> persecute you, they may seek your life. The adversary has always sought the life of the servants of God: You are, therefore, to be prepared at all times to make a sacrifice of your lives, should God require them in the advancement and building up of his cause. Murmur not at God. Be always prayerful, be always watchful. You will bear with me while I relieve the feelings of my heart. We shall not see another day like this. The time has fully come; the voice of the Spirit has come to set these men apart. You will see the time when you will desire to see such a day as this, and you will not see it. Every heart wishes you peace and prosperity, but the sceneewith you, will inevitably change. Let no man take your bishopric, and beware that you lose not your crowns. It will require your whole souls. It will require courage like Enoch’s. The time is near when you will be in the midst of congregations, who will gnash their teeth upon you. This Gospel must roll and will roll till it fill the whole earth. Did I say congregations would gnash upon you? yea I say nations will gnansh upon you. You will be considered the worst of men. Be not discouraged at this. When God pours out his Spirit the enemy will rage, but, God, remember, is on your right hand, and on your left. A man, though he may be considered the worst, has joy, who is conscious that he pleases God. The lives of those who proclaim the true gospel will be in danger, this has been the case ever since the days of righteous Abel. The same opposition has been manifest whenever men came forward to publish [HC 2:196] the gospel.
The time is coming when you will be considered the worst by many, and by some the best of men. The time is coming when you will be perfectly familiar with the things of God. This testimony will make those who do not believe your testimony, seek your lives. But there are whole nations, who <x> will receive your testimony. They will call you good men. Be not lifted up when you are called good men. Remember you are young men, and you shall be spared. I include the other three. Bear them in mind in your prayers, carry their cases to a throne of grace. Although they are not present, yet you and they are equal. This appointment is calculated to create an affection in you for each other, stronger than death. You will travel to other nations, Bear each other in mind. If one, or more, is cast into prisons, let the others pray for him and deliver him by their prayers, Your lives shall be in great jeopardy, but the promise of God is, that you shall be delivered. Remember you are not to go to other nations, till you receive your endorsement. Tarry at [p. 573]
until you are endowed with power from on high. You <February 21.> need a fountain of wisdom, knowledge, and inteligence such as you never had.
<Charge to the Twelve> Relative to the endowment I make a remark or two that there be no mistake. The world cannot receive the things of God. He can endow you without worldly pomp or great parade. He can give you that wisdom, that inteligence, and that power, which characterized the ancient saints, and now characterizes the inhabitants of the upper world. The greatness of your commission consists in this; you are to hold the keys of this ministry. You are to go to the nations afar off, nations that sit in darkness. The day is coming when the work of God must be done. Israel shall be gathered. The seed of Jacob shall be gathered from their long dispersion. There will be a feast to Israel the Elect of God. It is a sorrowful tale but the gospel must be preached, and God’s ministers be rejected. But where can Israel be found and receive your testimony, and not rejoice? No where! The prophecies are full of great things that are to take place in the last days. After the Elect are gathered out, Destruction shall come on the inhabitants of the earth. All nations shall feel the wrath of God after they have been warned by the saints of the most High. If you will not warn them others will and you will lose your crowns. You must prepare your minds to bid a long farewell to , even till the great day come. You will see what you never expected to see. You will read the mind of Enoch or Elijah, and the faith of the brother of Jared. You must be prepared to walk by faith however appaling the prospect to human view. You, and each of you, should feel the force of the imperious mandate. Son, go labor in my vineyard, and cheerfully receive what comes, but in the end you will stand while [HC 2:197] others will fall. You have read in the Revelation concerning ordination. Beware how you ordain, for all nations are not like this nation. They will willingly receive the ordinances at your hands to put you out of the way. There will be times when nothing but the angels of God can deliver you out of their hands. We appeal to your inteligence, we appeal to your understanding, that we have so far discharged our duty to you. We consider it one of the greatest condesentions of our heavenly Father in pointing you out to us. You will be stewards over this ministry. You have a work to do that no other men can do. You must proclaim the gospel in its Simplicity and purity, and we commend you to God and the word of of his grace. [p. 574]
<February 21.> You have our best wishes; you have our most fervent prayers that you may be able to bear this testimony that you have seen the face of God. Therefore call upon him in faith and mighty prayer, till you prevail, for it is your duty and your privilege to bear such testimony for yourselves. We now exhort you to be faithful to fulfil your calling, there must be no lack here. You must fulfil in all things, and permit us to repeat, all nations have a claim on you. You are bound together as the three Witnesses were; you notwithstanding can part and meet, and meet and part again, till your heads are silvered oer with age.
<Covenant of the Twelve> He then took them seperately by the hand, and said, Do you with full purpose of heart take part in this ministry, to proclaim the gospel with all diligince, with these your brethren, according to the tenor and intent of the charge you have received? Each of whom answered in the affirmative.
<27. First council of the Twelve.> “ February 27th.; This evening, nine of the twelve, viz. , , , , , , , and assembled at the house of President Josep Smith Jn., who was present, with , , and three elders. had gone to , and, and had not yet arrived to receive their ordination. -[There is an error in the date of the ordinations in p. 570 and 571.]- After prayer by <Joseph Smith’s Address, to the Twelve> president Joseph Smith Junr. he said if he were heard patiently he could lay before the council an item which would be of importance. He had for himself learned a fact, by experinc [experience] which on reflection, always gave him deep sorrow. It is a fact if I now had in my possession every decision which has been given had, upon importance impor[HC 2:198]tant items of doctrine and duty duties, since the commencement of this work, I would not part with them for any sum of money; but we have neglected to take minutes of such things, thinking, perhaps, that they would never benefit us afterwards, which, had we now, would decide almost any point of doctrine, which might be agitated. But this has not been agitated neglected, and now we cannot bear record to the church and to the world of the great and glorious manifestations, which have been made to us, with that degree of power and authority we otherwise could, were if we now had these things to publish abroad.
Since the twelve are now chosen, I wish to tell them a secret course which they may pursue, and be benefitted hereafter, in a point of light of which they are not now aware. If they will on every time they assemble, appoint a person to preside over them during the meeting, and one or more to keep a record of their proceedings, and on the [p. 575]
decision of every question or item, let it be what it may, let <February 27 Council of the Twelve.> such decision be noted down written, and such decision will forever remain upon record, and appear an item of covenant or doctrine. An item thus decided may appear at the time of little or no worth, but should it be published and one of you lay hands on it after, you will find it of infinite worth, not only to your brethren, but it will be a feast to your own Souls.
Here is another important item. If you assemble from time to time, and proceed to discuss important questions and pass decisions upon the same, and fail to note them down, by and by you will be dereven to straits from which you will not be able to extricate yourselves because you may be in a situation not to bring your faith to bear with sufficient perfection or power to obtain the desired information; or perhaps, for neglecting to write these things, when God revealed them, not esteeming them of sufficient worth, the Spirit may withdraw, and God may be angry; and here is or was a vast knowledge of infinite importance, which is now lost. What was the cause of this? It came in consequence of slothfulness, or a neglect to appoint a man to occupy a few moments in writing all these <prophecy> decisions. Here let me prophecy. The time will come, when, if you neglect to do this thing you will fall by the hands of unrighteous men. Were you to be brought before the authorities, and be accused of any crime or misdemeanor, and be as innocent as the angels of God, unless you can prove yourselves to have been somewhere else, your enemies will prevail over you: but if you can bring twelve men to testify that you were in a certain place, at that time, you will escape their hands. Now if you will be careful to keep minutes of these things, as I have said, it will be one of the most important records ever seen, for every such decision will ever after remain as items of doctrine, and covenants.
The council then expressed their approbation concerning the fore[HC 2:199]going remarks of President Smith, and appointed < & , appointed Clerks.> and Clerks for the meeting; President Smith proposed the following Question. What importance is there attached to the calling of these twelve Apostles, different from the other callings, or officers of the church? After the question was discussed by counsellors , , and , President Joseph Smith Jr gave the following decision. They are the twelve <Importance of the calling of the Twelve.> Apostles who are called to the office of travelling High Council, who are to preside over all the churches of the Saints among the Gentiles, where there is a presidency established, and they [p. 576]
are to travel and preach among the Gentiles, until the Lord <February 27> shall command them to go to the Jews. They are to hold the keys of this ministry, to unlock the door of the kingdom of heaven unto all nations, and to preach the gospel to every creature. This is the power, authority and virtue of their Apostleship.
< described by .—> Ohio, February, 27th. 1835. Having been requested by the Trustees of the, “Kirtland School” to give a small sketch of the number of students who have attended this institution, and of their progress in the different sciences, I cheerfully comply with the request, having been an instructor therein from its commencement, in Dcember last. The school has been conducted under the immediate care and inspection of Joseph Smith Junr, , , and , Trustees. When the school first commenced, we received into it both large and small, but in about three weeks the classes became so large, and the house so crowded, that it was thought adviseable to dismiss all the small students, and continue those those only who wished to study the sciences of penmanship, Arithmetic, English grammar and Geography. Before we dismissed the small schollars, there were in all about one hundred and thirty who attended. Since that time there have been, upon an average, about 100, the most of whom have received lectures upon English grammar; and for the last four weeks, about seventy have been studying geography one half the day, and grammar and writing the other part. T. Burdick’s Arithmetic, S. Kirkham grammar, and J. Olney’s geography have been used, with Noah Webster’s dictionary, as standard. Since the year 1827. I have taught school in five different states,— and visited many schools, in which I was not engaged as teacher; but I in none, I can say with certainty, have I seen students make more rapid progress, than in this. (Messr. & Advocate. p 80.) . [HC 2:200]
<28. Council began to ordain the Seventies> On the 28th. the Church in council assembled, commenced selecting certain individuals from the number of those who went up to , with me, in the camp; & the following are some the names of those who were ordained [HC 2:201] and blessed at that time to begin the organization of the first Quorum of the Seventies according to the visions and revelations which I had received;— The seventies to constitute travelling Quorums, to go into all the earth, whither-soever the twelve Apostles should call them. [HC 2:202]
<Names of the Seventies>
|J. B. Smith|
[HC 2:203] [p. 577]
|Lewis Robbins||Hiram Stratten [Stratton]|
|Darwin Richardson||Charles Kelley|
|Solomon Warner||Bradford Elliot|
<March 1.> The council adjourned to the day following, March 1st., when, after attending the funeral of Seth Johnson, several, who, had recently been baptized, were confirmed, and the sacrament <was> administered to the church. Previous to the Administration I spoke of the propriety of this institution in the church, and urged the importance of doing it with acceptance before the Lord, and asked, How long do you suppose a man may partake of this ordinance, unworthily and the Lord not withdraw his Spirit from him? How long will he thus trifle with sacred things, and the Lord not give him over to the buffettings of Satan until the day of redemption? The church should know if they are unworthy from time to time, to partake, lest the servants of God be forbidden to administer it. Therefore our hearts ought to humble themselves, and we to repent of our Sins, and But put away evil from among us.— After Sacrament the council continued the ordination and blessing of those previously called, also , &, — were ordained & blessed. , and were blessed, and and were ordained Presidents of the Seventies. [HC 2:204]
<Minutes of. a " 7 Meeting of the Church> “ March 7th. 1835. This day a meeting of the Church of Latter Day Saints, was called for the purpose of blessing in the name of the Lord those who have heretofore assisted in building (by their labor and other means.) the in this place. The Morning was occupied by President Joseph Smith Junior, in teaching the church the propriety and necessity of purifying itself. In the after-noon the names of those who had assisted to build the house were taken, and further instruction received from President Smith. He said that those who had distinguished themselves thus far by consecrating to the upbuilding of the , as well as laboring thereon, were to be remembered; that those who build it should own it, and have the control of it. After further remarks, those who performed the labor on the building voted unanimously that they would continue to labor thereon till the house should be completed,
President was appointed to Lay on hands and bestow blessings in the name of the Lord. The Presidents were blessed and , and , The building committee, <(the last two)> though not present, yet their rights in the [p. 578]
house were preserved. The following are the names of those who <March 7.> were blessed in consequence of their Labor on the in and those who consecrated to its upbuilding.
<Names of those Blessed for laboring on the in >
|Joseph Smith Junr||Henry Baker|
|<8.>||Sunday After-noon March 8.||Loren Babbit|
|Asa Lyman||Levi Osgood|
|Alpheus Harmon||Gad Yale|
|Z. H. Brewster|
|Edmund Durfee Jr.||John Ormsby|
|Gideon Ormsby||Luman Carter||Robert Quigley|
|Peter Shirts||Starry Fisk|
|Isaac Hubbard||Amos R. Orton|
|Horace Burgess||Almon Sherman||Josiah Fuller|
|Dexter Stillman||Erastus Rudd|
|Amos F. Herrick||Moses Bailey|
|Sebe Ives||Roswell Murray|
|William Carter||Andrew H. Aldrich||Benjamin Wells|
|Giles Cook||Oliver Wetherby|
|Malcum C. Davis||Thomas Hancock|
|Jaman Aldrich||James Lake||Joshua Grant|
|William Redfield||William Draper|
|Ransom Van Beuren|
|Joel Mc.Withee.||Harvey Smith|
|Matthew Foy.||Isaac Cleveland||John Reed|
|James Randall||Samuel Wilcox|
[HC 2:205] [HC 2:206]
<7. Blessings of particular individuals. . . .>
“The blessings and ordinations of particular individuals of the foregoing were as follows. , , and were blessed with the blessings of heaven, and a right in the in , agreeable to the labor and expence they had performed on thereon. [p. 579]
< &c.> , Asa Lyman, , <March 7.> Jonas Putnam and received the same blessing. The blessing referred to is was according to each man’s labor or donation, and in addition was promised wisdom and ability to <Blessings &c. &c.> proclaim the gospel. Edmund Durfee Junr. and <A. Miner &c> Gideon Ormsby received the same blessing and Edmund Durfee Junr was ordained an . Albert miner, and , Peter Shirts, Isaac Hubbard and Horace Burgess were blessed, <D. Stillman &c> and P. Shirts and H. Burgess were ordained Elders. Dexter Stillman, Ames F. Herrick, and were blessed, , < &c>Jaman [James] Aldrich and were blessed. Giles Cook Junr and were blessed and ordained elders. <Wm. Carter.> William Carter who was blind, was promised a restoration to sight if faithful. , Joel Mc. Withy [McWithee], Matthew Foy, James Randall,<.> and were blessed. was ordained a missionary to the Lamanites, after others have unlocked the door with a promise of gathering many to Zion, and of returning at the end of his mission, with great joy to enjoy the blessings <> of his family. , and were blessed, and was told that God had a work for him, to go and preach the gospel to the Sectarian Priests of this age; to call after them, and hunt them up, wherever he could hear of them, and preach the gospel to them, whether they will hear or not. William Bosley and were <> blessed and ordained elders. was blessed with a promise of wisdom to proclaim the gospel and also <.> to write in wisdom. and <Adjournment> Oliver Higby were blessed. Adjourned till tomorrow.
<Sunday 8.> March 8th. Met in the pursuant to adjournment. , Levi Osgood, Alpheus Harman [Harmon], , , Z. H. Brewster, Samuel Tompkins, John Ormsby, Luman Carter, , , Thomas Fisher, Stirry Fisk, <Amos R. Orton> Amos R. Orton and Almon Sherman were blessed. Amos R. Orton was ordained an elder and a missionary to the Lamanites. Andrew H. Aldrich, Thomas Baily, Seba Ives, , , , James Lake, and William Redfield were blessed and Wm Redfield was ordained an elder. [HC 2:207] Harvey Smith, Isaac Cleveland. William Baker, , John Wheeler. Henry Baker, William Fisk, Henry Wilcox, , David clough and were blessed and was set apart a Missionary to the Lamanites. , , , Loren Babbit, Blake Baldwin, and Joseph B. Baldwin. were blessed, , , and Gad Yale were blessed, and Gad Yale being one who went to the relief of the brethren in — <Gad Yale> was blessed accordingly. , , , Robert Quigley, and were blessed; and Samuel Canfield was blessed and ordained an Elder. [p. 580]
, and were blessed <March 8> and was ordained a missionary to the Lamanites. Erastus Rudd. Josiah Fuller, , Roswell Murray, <Blessings> Benjamin Wells, Nehemiah Harman, Thomas Hancock, Oliver Weatherby, Joshua Grant Junr., William Draper Junr., Ransom Van L.euven [Leuwen], , , and Samuel Wilcox <> were blessed. who went to , was set apart to be one of the seventies, and blessed; If thou are not purified thou wilt not be able to execute thy commission. Thou wilt fall into snares, and into the hands of enemies who will take thy <, Clerk.> life. Thou must begin to make a complete reformation in thyself”
The following belong to the seventies, but the date of their ordinatins <Names of some of the seventies> is not definitely known. Milo Andross, Joseph Winchester, , , Henry Brown, , (Hezekiah Fisk was blessed, but was not one of the seventies,) Henry Beaman, Jesse Huntsman, , , Henry Herriman, and . James L. Thompson was blessed but not ordained. [HC 2:208]
<12 Council of the— Twelve.> “ March 12th 1835. This evening the Twelve assembled, and the Council was opened by prayer president Joseph Smith Junr. and he proposed that we take our first mission through the eastern States, to the Atlantic Ocean, and hold conferences in the vicinity of the several branches of the church for the pupose of regulating all things necessary for their welfare. It was proposed that the Twelve leave on the 4th of May, which was unanimously agreed to. It was then proposed that during their present mission Elder should open the door to the remnants of Joseph who dwell among the Gentiles, which was carried. It was motioned and voted that the twelve should hold their <appointments for Conferences in the Eastern States &c.> first conference in , May 2d; in New York, May 9th: In N.Y. May 22nd.: In Lyonstown N.Y. June 5th.: On Pillow Point, June 19th.: In West Loboro, Upper Canida, June 29th.: In Johnsbury, Vermont, July 17th.: In Bradford, Massachusetts, August 7th.: In Dover New Hampshire, September 4th., In , Maine, September 18th.: Farmington, Maine, October 2d.
<x 28. Minutes of a council of the Twelve.> March 28th This afternoon the Twelve met in council and had a time of general confession. On reviewing our past course, we are satisfied, and feel to confess also, that we have not realized the importance of our callings to that degree that we ought. We have been light minded and vain, and in many things done wrong, wrong. For all these things we have asked the forgiveness of our heavenly Father, and wherein we have grieved or wounded the feelings of the presidency, we ask their forgiveness, The [HC 2:209] time when we are about to seperate, and when we shall meet again God only knows. We therefore feel to [p. 581]
ask of him whom we have acknowleded to be our Prophet and <March 28. The Twelve ask for a Revelation.> Seer, that he enquire of God for us, and obtain a written Revelation, (if consistent,) that we may look upon it when we <are> seperated, that our hearts may be comforted. Our worthiness has not inspired us to make this request but our unworthiness. We have unitedly asked God our Heavenly Father to grant unto us through his Seer, a Revelation of his mind and will concerning our duty the coming season, even a great revelation that will enlarge our hearts, comfort us in adversity, and brighten our hopes amidst the powers of darkness.
To President Joseph Smith Junr.)
In compliance with the above request, I enquired of the Lord <Revelation on Priesthood.> and received for answer the following Revelation on
<par 1 Two Priesthoods> 1. There are, in the church, two Priesthoods, namely: the Melchisedek, and the Aaronic, including the Levitical Priesthood. [HC 2:210] Why the first is called the Melchisedek priesthood, is because Melchisedek was such a great high priest: before his day it was called the holy priesthood, after the order of the son of God; but out of respect or reverence to the name of the Supreme Being, to avoid the too frequent repetition of his name, they, the church, in ancient days, called that priesthood after Melchisedek, or the Melchisedek priesthood.
<2. appendages> 2. All other authorities, or offices in the church are appendages to this priesthood; but there are two divisions, or grand heads— one is the Melchisedek priesthood, and the other is the Aaronic, or Levitical priesthood.
<3. Elder is of the Melchisedeck. P.> 3. The office of an elder comes under the priesthood of Melchisedek. The Melchisedek priesthood holds the right of Presidency and has power and authority over all the offices in the Church, in all ages of the world to administer in spiritual things.
<4. Presidency officiate in all offices.> 4. The presidency of the high priesthood, after the order of Melchisedek, have a right to officiate in all offices in the church.
<5. High priests officiate in all Lesser offices.> 5. High priests after the order of the Milchisedek priesthood, have a right to officiate in their own standing, under the direction of the presidency, in administering spiritual things and also in the office of an elder, priest, (of the Levitical order) teacher, Deacon, and Member.
<6 Elder officiate instead of High P.> 6. An Elder has a right to officiate in his stead when the high priest is not present.
<7 High. P. & elders to administer in spiritual things.> 7. The high priest, and elder, are to administer in spiritual things, agreeably to the covenants and commandments of the church, and they have a right to officiate in all these offices in the church when there are no higher authorities present
<<8.> Priesthood of Aaron> 8. The second priesthood is called the priesthood of Aaron, [p. 582]
because it was conferred upon Aaron and his seed, throughout <March 28> all their generations. Why it is called the lesser priesthood, is because it is an appendage to the greater, or the Melchisedek priesthood, and has power in administering outward ordinances. The Bishopric is the presidency of this priesthood, and holds the keys or authority of the same, no man has a legal right to this office, to hold the keys of this priesthood, except he be a literal descendant of Aaron. But as a high priest, of the Melchisedek priesthood, has authority to officiate in all the lesser offices, he may officiate in the office of bishop when no literal descendant of Aaron can be found; provided he is called, [HC 2:211] and set apart, and ordained unto this power, by the hands of the presidency of the Melchisedek priesthood.
<authority of the Melchisedek P.d.> 9. The power and authority of the higher or melchisedek priesthood, is, to hold the keys of all <the> spiritual blessings of the church,— to have the privilege of receiving thee mysteries of the kingdom of heaven,— to have the heavens opened unto them,— to commune with the general assembly and church of the first-born, and to enjoy the communion and presence of God the Father, and Jesus the Mediator of the New Covenant.
<authority of the Aronic priestd> 10. The power and authority of the lesser, or Aaronic priesthood, is, to hold the keys of the ministering of angels, and to administer in outward ordinances, the letter of the gospel,— the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins, agreeably to the covenants and commandments.
<Presiding offices.> 11. Of necessity there are presidents, or presiding offices growing out of, or appointed of, or from among those who are ordained to the several offices in these two priesthoods. Of the Melchisedek <Three, Quorum of the presidency.> priesthood, three presiding high priests, chosen by the body, appointed and ordained to that office, and upheld by the confidence, faith and prayer of the church, form a quorum of <Twelve travelling Councellors,= Apostles> the presidency of the church. The twelve travelling counsellors are called to be the twelve Apostles, or special witnesses of the name of Christ, in all the world: Thus differing from other officers in the church in the duties of their calling: And they form a Quorum equal in authority and power, to the three presidents, previously <The Seventy> mentioned. The Seventy are also called to preach the Gospel, and to be especial witnesses unto the Gentiles in all the world: Thus differing from other officers in the church in the duties of their calling: and they form a quorum, equal in authority to that of the twelve <e>special witnesses or Apostles just named: And every decision made by either of these quorums, must be by <Decisions of the quorums, equal.> the unanimous voice of the same; that is every member in each quorum, must be agreed to its decisions, in order to make their decisions of the same power or validity one with the other. -[A majority may form a quorum when circumstances render it impossible to be otherwise.]- Unless this is the case, their decisions are not entitled to the same blessings which the [p. 583]
decisions of a quorum of the presidents were anciently, who were <March 28.> ordained after the order of Melchisedek, and were righteous and holy men. The decisions of these quorums, or either of them are to be made in all righteousness; in holiness and lowliness of heart; meekness [HC 2:212] and longsuffering; in faith and virtue and knowledge; Temperance, patience, Godliness, brotherly kindness and charity, because the promise is if these things abound in them, they shall not be unfruitful in the knowledge of the Lord. And in case that any decision of these quorums, is made in unrighteousness, it may be brought before a general assembly of the several quorums which constitute the spiritual authorities of the church, otherwise there can be no appeal from their decision.
<The Twelve> 12. The twelve are a travelling, presiding high council, to officiate in the name of the Lord, under the direction of the presidency of the church, agreeably to the institution of heaven; to build up the church, and regulate all the affairs of the same, in all nations: first unto the gentil[e]s, and secondly unto the Jews.
<The Seventy> 13. The seventy are to act in the name of the Lord, under the direction of the Twelve, or the traveling high council, in building up the church and regulating all the affairs of the same in all nations: first unto the Gentiles and then to the Jews:— the twelve being sent out, holding the keys, to open the door by the proclamation of the gospel of Jesus Christ, and first unto the Gentiles and then unto the Jews.
<Standing High Councils.> 14. The standing high Councils, at the Stakes of Zion, form a quorum equal in authority, in the affairs of the church, in all their decisions, to the quorum of the Presidency, or to the travelling high council.
<High Council in Zion.> 15. The high Council in Zion, forms a quorum equal in authority, in the affairs of the church, in all their decisions, to the councils of the twelve at the stakes of Zion.
<The Twelve to call on the Seventy> 16. It is the duty of the travelling high council to call upon the seventy, when they need assistance, to fill the several calls for preaching and administering the Gospel, in stead of any others.
<Evangelists to be ordained> 17. It is the duty of the twelve in all large branches of the church, to ordain evangelical ministers, as they shall be designated unto them by revelation.
<Order of this Priesthood> 18. The order of this priesthood was confirmed to be handed down from father to son, and rightly belongs to the literal descendants of the chosen seed, to whom the promises were made. This order was instituted in the days of Adam, and came down by lineage in the following manner:
<Adam to Seth.> 19. From Adam to Seth, who was ordained by Adam at the age of 69 years, and was blessed by him three years previous to his (Adam’s) death, and received the promise of God by his father, that his posterity should be the chosen [p. 584]
of the Lord, and that they should be preserved unto the end of <March 28 Seth’s Likeness to Adam> the earth, [HC 2:213] because he (Seth) was a perfect man, and his likeness was the express likeness image of his father’s, insomuch that he seemed to be like unto his father in all things; and could be distinguished from him only by his age.
<Enos ordained.> 20. Enos was ordained at the age of 134 years, and four months, by the hand of Adam.
<Cainan called.> 21. God called upon Cainan in the wilderness, in the fortieth year of his age and he met Adam in journeying to the place Shedolamak; he was eighty seven years old when he received his ordination.
<Mahalaleel Ordained> 22. Mahalaleel was 496 years and seven days old when he was ordained by the hand of Adam, who also blessed him.——
<Jared ordained> 23. Jared was 200 years old when he was ordained under the hand of Adam, who also blessed him.
<Enoch Ordained> 24. Enoch was 25 years old when he was ordained under the hand of Adam, who also blessed him, and he was 65 and Adam blessed him— and he saw the Lord: and he saw the Lord and he walked with him, and was before his face continually; and he walked with God 365 years: making 430 years old when he was translated.
<Methuselah ordained> 25. Methuselah was 100 years old when he was ordained under the hand of Adam.
<Lamech> 26. Lamech was 32 years old when he was ordained under the hand of Seth.
<Noah> 27. Noah was 10 years old when he was ordained under the hand of Methuselah.
<Adam bestows his last blessing on his posterity> 28 Three years previous to the death of Adam, he called Seth, Enos, Cainan, Mahalaleel, Jared, Enoch, and Methuselah, who were all high priests, with the residue of his posterity, who were righteous, into the valley of Adam-Ondi-Ahman, and there bestowed upon them his last blessing. And the Lord appeared unto them, and they rose up and blessed Adam, and called him Michael the Prince, the Archangel. And the Lord administered comfort unto Adam, and said unto him, I have set thee to be at the head: a multitude of nations shall come of thee; and thou art a prince over them forever.
<Adam Prophciied.> 29. And Adam stood up in the midst of the congregation and notwithstanding he was bowed down with age, being full of the Holy Ghost, predicted whatsoever should befal his prosterity unto the latest generation. These things were all written in the Book of Enoch, and are to be testified of in due time.
<Duty of the Twelve> 30. It is the duty of the twelve, also, to ordain and set in [HC 2:214] order all the other officers of the church agreeably to the revelation which says;
31. To the church of Christ in the land of Zion, in— [p. 585]
addition to the church laws, respecting church business; <March 28> verily I say unto you, says the Lord of Hosts, There must needs be presiding elders, to preside over those who are of the office of an elder; and also priests to preside over those who are of the office of a priest; and also teachers to preside over those who are of the office of a teacher, in like manner; and also the deacons; wherefore from deacon to teacher, and from teacher to priest, and from priest to elder, severally as they are appointed, according to the covenants and commandments of the church; then comes the high priesthood, which is the greatest of all. Wherefore, it must needs be that one be appointed, of the high priesthood, to preside over the priesthood; and he shall be called president of the high priesthood of the church, or, in other words, the presiding high priest over the high priesthood of the church. From the same comes the administering of ordinances, and blessings upon the church, by the laying on of the hands.
<Office and duty of a Bishop.> 32. Wherefore the office of a bishop is not equal unto it; for the office of a bishop is in administering all temporal things; nevertheless, a bishop must be chosen from the high priesthood, unless he is a literal descendant of Aaron; for, unless he is a literal descendant of Aaron, he cannot hold the keys of that priesthood. Nevertheless, a high priest, that is after the order of Melchisedek, may be set apart unto the ministering of temporal things, having a knowledge of them by the spirit of truth, and also to be a judge in israel, to do the business of the church to sit in judgment upon transgressors, upon testimony, as it shall be laid before him, according to the laws, by the assistance of his counsellors, whom he has chosen, or will chose among the elders of the Church. This is the duty of a bishop, who is not a literal descendant of Aaron, but has been ordained to the high priesthood after the order of Melchisedek.
<The Bishop shall be a Judge.> 33. Thus shall he be a judge, even a common judge among the inhabitants of Zion, or in a stake of Zion, or in any branch of the church where he shall be set apart unto this ministry, until the borders [HC 2:215] of Zion are enlarged, and it becomes necessary to have other bishops, or judges is [in] Zion, or else-where; and inasmuch as there are other bishops appointed they shall act in the same office.
<Descendants of Aaron have a legal right to the Bishopric> 34. But a literal descendant of Aaron has a legal right to the presidency of this priesthood, to the keys of this ministry, to act in the office of Bishop independently, without counsellors, except in a case where a the president of the high priesthood after the order of Melchisedek, is tried; to sit as a judge in Israel. And the decision of either of these Councils, agreeably to the commandment which says; [p. 586]
<March 28 when dissatisfied, decision may be carried up to a council of the Church.> 35. Again, verily, I say unto you; The most important business of the church, and the most difficult cases of the church, inasmuch as there is not satisfaction upon the decision of the bishop, or judges, it shall be handed over and carried up, unto the council of the church, before the presidency of the high priesthood; and the presidency of the council of the high priesthood, shall have power to call other high priests, even twelve to assist as counsellors; and thus the presidency of the high priesthood, and its counsellors Shall have power to decide upon testimony, according to the laws of the church. And after this decision it shall be had in remembrance no more before the Lord; for this is the highest council of the Church of God, and a final decision upon controversies, in spiritual matters.
<No person exempt from this council.> 36. There is not any person belonging to the church, who is exempt from this council of the church.
<Trial of a president of the High Priesthood.> 37. And inasmuch as a president of the high priesthood shall shall transgress, he shall be had in remembrance before the common council of the church, who shall be assisted by twelve counsellors of the high priesthood, and their decision upon his head shall be an end of controversy concerning him. Thus none shall be exempted from the justice and the laws of God: that all things may be done in order and in solemnity, before him, according to truth and righteousness.
<Duty of a presiding Deacon> 38. And again, verily I say unto you, the duty of a president over the office of a deacon, is to preside over twelve deacons, to sit in council with them, and to teach them their duty edifying one another, as it is given according to the covenants
<President of the Teacher’s— Duty> 39. And also the duty of the president over the office of the teachers, is to preside of over twenty four of the teachers, and to sit in council with them,— teaching them the duties of their office, as given in the covenants. [HC 2:216]
<President of the priesthood of Aaron his duty.> 40. Also the duty of the president over the priesthood of Aaron, is to preside of over forty eight priests, and sit in council with them, to teach them the duties of their office, as is given in the covenants. This president is to be a bishop; for this is one of the duties of this priesthood.
<President of the Elder’s Quorum his duty.> 41. Again, the duty of the president over the office of elders is to preside over ninety six elders, and to sit in council with them, and to teach them according to the covenants. This presidency is a distinct one from that of the seventy, and is designed for those who do not travel into all the world.
<President of the office of the High priesthood. Duty.> 42. And again, the duty of the president of the office of the high priesthood is to preside over the whole church, and to be like unto Moses. Behold, here is wisdom,— yea to be a seer, a revelator, a translator and a prophet, having all the gifts of God which he bestows upon the head of the church. [p. 587]
<March 28.. Seven presidents of the Seventies.> 43. And it is according to the vision, showing the order of the Seventy, that they should have Seven presidents to preside over them, chosen out of the number of the seventy, and the seventh president of these presidents is to preside over the six; and these seven presidents are to choose other Seventy besides the first seventy, to whom they belong, and are to preside over them; and also other seventy until seven times seventy, if the labor in the vineyard of necessity requires it. And these seventy are to be travelling <Duty of the Seventies> ministers unto the Gentiles, first, and also unto the Jews, whereas other offices of the Church, who belong not unto the church twelve neither to the seventy, are not under the responsibility to travel among all nations, but are to travel as their circumstances shall allow. notwithstanding they may hold as high and responsible offices in the church.
<Duty of every man.> 44 Wherefore, now let every man learn his duty, and to act in the office in which he is appointed, in all diligence. He that is slothful shall not be counted worthy to stand, and he that learns not his duty and shews himself not approved, shall not be counted worthy to stand; even so. Amen. [HC 2:217]
<School closed> The school closed the last weed [week] in March, to give the elders an opportunity to go forth and proclaim the gospel preparatory to the endowment.
<29. Preached at Huntsburgh.> Sunday March 29th. I preached about three hours, at Huntsburgh, where Where , had been debating holding a public discussion on a challenge from Mr J. M. Tracy, a campbellite preacher, the two days previous on the divinity of the book of Mormon, at the close of which two were baptized, and on monday four more came forward for baptism.
<April 3 & 4. Conference at .> April 3rd and 4th a conference of the saints was held at Ohio <New York> presiding, Fifteen branches of the church were represented: five of which had never not been previously represented at any conference, numbering about fifty members.— Elder Chester //L. Heath of , was expelled from the church for breach of covenant. <Mess & Ad p 316> and not observing the word of wisdom. Oliver , clerk.
<26. Minutes of the Twelve> <See D addenda page 1—> On the 26th of April the twelve Apostles, and the seventy who had been chosen, assembled in the Temple (although unfinished) with a a numerous concourse of people, to receive our their charge and instructions from President Joseph Smith, Junr., <x> relative to our their mission and duties. The congregation being <arrival of and .> assembled, Elder arrived [HC 2:218] from the south part of the state, making our number complete, Elder , having arrived the day previous.”
<28th> 28.th.. “The Twelve met this afternoon, at the school room for the purpose of prayer and consultation. Elder opened the meeting by prayer. Motioned and carried, that when any member of the council [p. 588]
wishes to speak, he shall arise, and stand upon his feet. Elder <April 28.> read the commandment given concerning the choosing of the Twelve, when it was voted that we each forgive one another, every wrong that has existed among us, and that from henceforth <Twelve Equal> each one of the twelve love his brother as himself, in temporal as well as in spiritual things, always enquiring into each other’s welfare. Decided that the twelve be ready and start on their mission from ’s Tavern, on Monday at 2’ oclock <See 5 R. T.> A. M. May 4th. Elder then closed by prayer. , <clks>
<May 2. Grand Council. Minutes.> “May 2d. A Grand Council was held in , composed of the following officers of the church, (viz.) Presidents Joseph Smith, Junr. , , , , and , with their the council of Twelve high priests, The Twelve Apostles, and council, and council; and some of the seventy with their presidents, <(viz)> , , , , , and , and many elders from different parts. President Joseph Smith Junr. Presiding. After the conference was opened the twelve had taken their seats President Joseph Smith Jun. said that it would be the duty of the Twelve, when in council, to take their <order of presiding in Council.> seats together according to age, the oldest to be seated at the head, and preside in the first council, the next oldest in the second, and so on until the youngest had presided, and then begin at the oldest again &c. [HC 2:219] The Twelve then took their <The Twelve according to age.> seats according to age as follows, , , , , , , , , , , , and .
<Duty of the Twelve to go abroad.> President Smith then stated that the twelve will have no right to go into Zion or any of its stakes, and there undertake to regulate the affairs thereof, where there is a standing high Council; But it is their duty to go abroad and regulate all matters relative to the different branches of the church.
<A quorum of the twelve can act independently> When the twelve are together or a quorum of them in any church, they will have authority to act independently, and make decisions, and those decisions will be valid. But where there is not a quorum, they will have to do business by the <Standing high council, not to go abroad.> voice of the church, No standing high council has authority to go into the churches abroad, and regulate the matters thereof, for this belongs to the twelve. No standing high council will ever be established only in Zion or one of its stakes.
<The twelve decide in the name of the church.> When the twelve pass a decision it is in the name of the church therefore it is valid. No official member of the church has authority to go into any branch thereof and ordain any minister <Not to appoint meetings &c. without consent of Presiding Ed.> for that <the> church unless it is by the [HC 2:220] voice of that branch. No elder has authority to go into any branch of the church. and appoint meetings, or attempt to regulate the affairs of [p. 589]
the church, without the advice and consent of the presiding <May 2.> elder of that branch. If the first Seventy are all employed, and there is a call for more laborers, it will be the duty of the seven presidents of the first seventy, to call and ordain <Other Seventy called & ordained.> other seventy, and send them forth to labor in the vineyard, until, if needs be, they set apart seven times seventy, and even until there are one hundred and forty and four thousand thus set apart to the ministry. The Seventy are not to attend the conferences of the twelve unless they are called upon, or requested so <The twelve & Seventy to depend on the church for support.> to do, by the twelve. The twelve and the seventy have particularly to depend upon their ministry for their support, and that of their families, and they have a right by virtue of their offices to call upon the churches to assist them.
< ord. Presidents of the seventy to travel> “Elder was ordained one of the 70. The circumstances of the Presidents of the seventy were severally considered, relative to their traveling in the vineyard, and it was unanimously agreed that they should hold themselves in readiness to go at the call of the twelve, when the Lord opens the way. Twenty seven of the <The 70 to travel.> seventy were also considered, and it was decided they should hold themselves in readiness to travel in the ministry at the call of the presidents of the seventy, as the Lord opens the way.
<Adjournment> “After an adjournment of one hour the council re-assembled, and the addition of the high council of , and the bishop of <High Council & Bishops present> Zion and with their councils, who were not present in the morning as before stated. was suspended as an elder and member, until investigation could be had before the bishop’s court. Complaint having been preferred against him <. &c. ordained to 70> by .— was ordained one of the seventy, also, Henry Banner, Michael Griffith, , and Lebbeus T. Coon [Libbeus T. Coons].— who together with twenty others, were called upon to hold themselves in readiness to travel where when circumstances might permit.
<Elders of called to be ready.> “The elders of and its vicinity were then called upon, or their circumstances considered; and their names being enroled, President Joseph Smith Jun arose, with the list in his hand, an[d] made [HC 2:221] some very appropriate remarks, relative to the deliverance of Zion; and so much of the authority of the church being present, moved that <Struggle for Zion.> we never give up the struggle for Zion even until death, or until Zion is redeemed. The vote was unanimous and with deep feeling. <All elders bound to travel> Voted that all the elders of the church are bound to travel in the world to preach the gospel with all their might mind and strength, when their circumstances will admit of it, and that the door is now opened. Voted that Elder , <Door opened to the house of Joseph By .> and Amos Orton, are appointed to go and preach the gospel to the remnants of Joseph; The door to be opened by elder , and this will open the door to the whole house of Joseph. Voted that when another seventy is required, the presidency of the first <Presidency of First 70, to choose next 70.> seventy shall choose ordain and set them apart from among the most experienced of <the> Elders of the church. Voted that whenever the labor, [p. 590]
of other seventy is required and they are to be set apart and ordained <May 2. Presidency of 70 not to choose and ordain 70s. at Zion and Stakes.> to that office; those who are residing at , and the regions round about, who can come to , do so, and be set apart and ordained to that office, by the <direction of the> presidency of the church in : But the Presidency of the seventy are to choose of the most experienced elders abroad, and ordain and set apart to that office, but are not to do it at Zion or any of the stakes thereof. , clerk.”
<4 Minutes of a conference of the twelve, at > “The twelve left this morning, and embarked on board the steamer Sandusky at , and landed at Dunkirk New York, 5 o clock P.M. and after preaching in those regions a few days, met in conference <9> at May 9th. according to previous appointment; the church being present, and , the oldest of the quorum Presiding
The following items were suggested for the consideration of the council. <Limits of Conference> 1st. Resolved that the limits if this conference extend south and west to the line of , North as far as Lake Erie, and East as far as ; emb[r]acing the branches of , , and to be called the Conference. [HC 2:222] 2d. Enquire[d] into <Enquiries.> the standing of all the elders within the bounds of this conference; 3rd Enquire[d] into the manner of their teaching, doctrines &c; 4th Enquire into the teaching, conduct, and faithfulness of all travelling elders who have recently labored within the bounds of conference. 5th. Hea[r]d a representation of the several branches of the church.
On investigation, the standing and teaching of the elders present met the approbation of the council, except the teaching of Elder Joseph Rose, <Elder Joseph Rose’s false teaching> which was that “the Jewish church was the sun, and the Gentile church was the moon &c. When the Jewish church was scattered the sun was darkened; and when the Gentile church is cut off the Moon will be turned to blood:” also some things relative to the Apocalyptic Beast, with seven heads and ten horns &c. He was shewn his error and willingly made a humble confession. The faithfulness of all the travelling elders was found to be good. <A difficulty> The members of the branch were represented in good standing, with a difficulty on the minds of some relative to the baptism of Brother , inasmuch as he was baptized by a travelling elder without the church being called together to know if they would receive him to fellowship. The council decided that if there was a fault, it was in the administrator, and not in the candidate. This branch numbered 75. The Branch, 20 in good standing, but low in spirit in consequence, <Conference adjournment> of a neglect to keep the word of Wisdom. After further instruction on general principles, the conference adjourned until 8 o clock A. M. Monday May 11th.
<10> Sunday 10th. Elders and preached to an attentive congregation of about five hundred. After sacrament, five persons desired baptism, which was atten[d]ed by .
<Conference met. 11.> May 11. Conference met pursuant to adjournment. Resolved unanimously, that this conference go to immidiately and appoint their “Wise Men” and gather up their riches, and send [p. 591]
them to Zion to purchase lands, according to previous commandment <May 11.> that all things be prepared before them, in order to their gathering Much was said to the conference upon these important things, and <Conference convenanted to abide teachings of the twelve.> they covenanted before the Lord that they would be strict to attend to our teaching. After preaching by , at 3 o clock P. M. and the farewell Exhortation of the twelve, seven individuals were baptized by who were confirmed in the evening, [HC 2:223] and after layings on hands on many sick, who obtained relief <Adjourned to 22—> Adjourned to the 22d instant to meet in New York. C<lerk>
< & arrive in , Ed. M. & A.> About the middle of May and presidents of the church in , arrived at ; and was appointed to take the place of President , in conducting the “Messenger and Advocate:” was appointed to edit the “Northern Times,” a weekly < Ed N. Times> News paper which we had commenced in February last, in favor of Democracy: And (with his son Watermar [Waterman Phelps]) made his < assisted in Doctrine & Covts.> home with my family, and assisted the committee in arrang compiling the Book of Doctrine and Covenants.
<22 Conference Minutes of the Twelve.> “May 22d. The twelve met in conference with the church in New York, when after an agreeable salutation and rejoicing in each others prosperity, Elder being chairman, conference was opened by singing, and prayer, by the president. -[Here let it be remarked that it was the universal custom of the Twelve, and the presidency of the chu[r]ch, to open and close all conferences & councils by prayer.— and generally singing, so that this need not be named in this history hereafter]- Resolved that the limits of this conference extend from in the west, so far East as to include , South to , and north to Lake Ontario, called the “ <, Conference> Conference,” including the branches of , , Portage, Grove, Burns, Geneseeo, , Java, Holland, Aurora, Greenwood, and Niagara. The report concerning the labors and teachings of the elders in the conference, and those who had recently travelled through was good. The Branch in numbered 65: 28: Burns, 30; Holland, 15, represented by as having suffered much <Branches Represented> from false teachings by hypocrites and knaves: Aurora, 4: Niagara 4: the numbers of the remaining branches not ascertained but generally reported in good standing. The council gave instruction concerning the Word of Wisdom, the Gift of tongues, prophecying, &c and adjourned till <Adjourned— 23> tomorrow morning. 23d. Conference met, to take into consideration the redemption of Zion. After addresses from five of the council, the Church expressed their determination to put in practice the teaching <Council 25> we had given, when conference adjourned. May 25th the twelve met in council, to pray for one another, until we meet again, and Resolved, < & , sent to — &. Springville to set in order the churches.> that we recommend and council Elders , and to go to the churches at Chenango-Point, New York, and Springville Pennsylvania, (among whom we understand there is some difficulty) and set in order the things that are wanting in those branches.” , C.
Resolved that Elder go immediately from this place. [p. 592]
to an adjacent tribe of the remnants of Joseph, and open the door [HC 2:224] <May 25. to open the door to the house of Joseph.—> of salvation to that long dejected, and afflicted people. The council according to his request, laid their hands upon him that he might have their faith and prayers to fill (with humility and power) that very important mission. They also laid hands on Elders , and A<mos> Orton, for the same purpose, as they expected to accompany him. Ck.”
<June 5. Minutes of Twelve> “On the 5th. of June, nine of the Twelve met in council at Rose or Lyonstown, New York; there being so few of the brethren in that region it was Resolved. that it was not necessary to establish a conference. after council adjourned, and <after> they had preached several sermons in the vicinity, <elders> < & return to .> and <and ,> returned to as witnesses on a certain case wherein President Joseph Smith Junr was concerned before the county court, in which he righteously triumphed over his enemies, C”
<6.> “The elders and brethren assembled in conference June 6th. at , O. < Conference> , President. Elder David Matthews, who was suspended at a previous conference for unchristian conduct, was present. After hearing the <D. Matthews tried> testimony the Council unanimously agreed that there had been due contrition of Spirit manifested by him, in his walk and conversation, since his suspension, and Elder Matthews was restored. Elder Barkdall <Barkdall vs Keeler both rebuked> preferred a claim against elder Keeler for services said to be rendered some eight or nine years since, and to have been awarded by a former Council. It appeared there had been a decision in favor of elder Barkdall, but no testimony was produced by either of the parties, to substantiate a claim or prove a payment. It was therefore resolved that both [HC 2:227] the accuser and the accused have manifested a bad spirit, and deserve the severe rebuke of this Council. Elder Milo Hays was tried for not obeying the words of wisdom, and covenant breaking. Both charges were sustained by testimony, and Elder Hays was excluded from the church. several other cases of discipline were attended <Sunday 7.> to, and conference adjourned. <at 12 o clock at night.> Sunday morning president preached, after which four were baptized. The council again organized <. Ordd.> in the evening, and ordained <an> Elder. The case of Elders Barkdall and Keeler were was again called up, four counsellors spoke <Barkdall & Keeler re-tried.> on the subject, when it was decided that they have one week and no more to settle their differences with each other, and make confession to the church, or lose their standing. C<lerk”>
The Presidency, Bishop, and High council of Zion having removed to , or gone forth in the vineyard, I caused it to be published in the June number of the Messenger and advocate that <The elders no authority to meddle with the spiritual affairs of Zion.> according to the order of the kingdom begun in the last days, to prepare men for the rest of the Lord, the elders in Zion, or in her immediate region, have no authority or right, to meddle with her spiritual affairs, to regulate her concerns, or hold councils for the expulsion of members, in her unorganized condition The high council has been expressly organized to administer in all her spiritual affairs; and the bishop and his council, <wheat and tares grow together.> are set over her temporal matters; so that the elders acts are null and void. Now, the Lord wants the wheat and tares to [p. 593] grow together: for Zion must be redeemed with judgment, and her <June. 7 . The elders of Zion to go forth and clear their garments> converts with righteousness. Every elder that can, after providing for his family (if he has any.) and paying his debts, must go forth and clear his skirts from the blood if this generation. While they are in that region, instead of trying members for transgression, or offences, let every one labor to prepare himself for [HC 2:228] the vineyard, sparing a little time to comfort the mourners; to bind up the broken hearted; to reclaim the backslider; to bring back the wanderer; to re-invite into the kingdom such as have been cut off, by encourageing them to lay to while the day lasts, and work righteousness, and, with one heart and one mind, prepare to help redeem Zion, that goodly land of promise, where the willing and obedient shall be blessed. [HC 2:229] <Note D Addedum page 2>
<visit of Mr Hewitt, from Europe.> About this time I received an introduction from <to> Mr [John] Hewitt, a preacher, who had come out from Europe, with his lady, to examine this work, and as he stated was delegated by his church or the clergy for this purpose. [HC 2:230] [HC 2:231] His interview was short, and he left with the understanding he would call again, and renew his investigation.— As he did not return according to agreement, and hearing he was at , The A council of the presidency sent him the following letter,
<June 14 Letter of the presidency to the Rev Mr Hewitt.> “June 14th. To the Rev Mr Hewitt; Sir, in consequence of your not returning to us as we understood you at your introduction to us. It was resolved and approved in council, on the evening of the 14th instant, that the bearor, , one of the presiding elders of our church, should proceed to , and ascertain if possible, the cause of your delay, and this is done as one reason, that we feel an anxious desire for the salvation of the souls of men. and to satisfy your enquiries concerning the religion we profess. If at it is the sincere desire of the council, that Mr Hewitt return, that we may satisfy him concerning our religion, and he satisfy us concerning his for we feel as great a desire for the welfare of his people as he can for ours. With respect &c. , Clerk.” [HC 2:232]
<’s Report of his visit to Mr Hewitt.> repaired immediately to , on on the day following reported to the council that Mr Hewitt was not in the place, that he left their letter with Mrs Hewitt, who informed him that her “husband had frequently spoken of his wish to become further acquainted with this people whom he had come out from Europe to see,” but the next we heard of the Revd John Hewitt was, that he had Returned to England, opened a school in Ohio.
<Mr Hewitts Delegation from Barnsley, Engd.> Mr Hewitt was elder of the Irvingite church in Barn[HC 2:233]sley, England, and received a delegation from that church, as expressed in a letter from Mr Shaw, <Thomas Sha[w] of April 21,> to visit the saints in , and ascertain their faith and principles, and if Mr Hewitt found them as they expected, the saints in might expect help from them (the church in Barnsley) as they were rich in Temporal things. and had received the gift of tongues, in their church. [p. 594]
Thursday June 18th $950. were subscribed for the temple by the <June 18.> Saints in . Great anxiety was manifest to rool [roll?] on the work.
<19. Minutes of the Twelve Black River Conference> “On the 19th Nine of the traveling high council met with the church in conference at Pillow-Point [Pillar Point] New. York, and resolved that the limits of the conference embrace all the northern part of the state, to be call the “Black River Conference.” The elders of this conference had been diligent in their callings. Their manner of teaching, in, some respects <Report of the Churches> needed correction, which they gladly received. The church at Pillow- Point numbered 21, but did not generally observe the works word of Wisdom. Sackets Harbor numbered 19: Burville 7: Champion 6: Ellisburgh 33: Henderson, 4: Alexandria, 4: Lyme, 4: and Two in Orleans: 6 3 in ; and 6 in . After hearing the report of the churches, five of <Teaching of the Council.> the council successively addressed the conference upon the principles of Church government; The nature and exercise of Spiritual gifts; The word of wisdom, and the propriety of choosing wise men and sending them, with moneys, to purshase lands in , so that they might not gather in confusion, and the conference unanimously acquiesced in the teachings of the council.
<20 John Elmer’s false principles> Adjourned until the 20th. then met and John Elmer was presented as holding very incorrect principles, such for instance, some that the Spirit of God sometimes took him and threw him down, and that he could die the death of the righteous and of the wicked, in order to shew his power with God, He also stated that he had passed through a kind of death so as to become immortal, and should exist forever without any other death, <John Elmer cut off.> or [HC 2:225] change only grow brighter and brighter eternally. He persisted in these things and would not receive teaching from the council, therefore was cut off, on monday five were baptized and <our> public meeting closed.
Clerk” [HC 2:226]
<21.> The Sunday twenty first, being sunday, I preached in on the evangelical order. Thursday June 25 there was a <25> meeting in to subscribe for the building of the <Subscription for Building the in .> and $6,232,50. were added to the list. Joseph Smith subscribed $500; $750; $500; $500; and $500, of the above; all of which was they paid within one hour, and the people were astonished. [HC 2:234]
<29. Minutes of the Twelve Conference in Loborough.—> “June 29th. Six of the Travelling high council (viz) , , , , , and assembled in conference with the church in Lo[ugh]borough, Upper Canada. <The> church in Loboro’, composed of 25 members, were uninformed in many principles of the New Covenant, not having had the same privilege of instruction as the Churches in the . Brothers Henry & Jacob Wood, who had been suspended, had a re-hearing but were cut-off. Elder Frederick M. Van Leuven was appointed presiding elder, and a number were added to the church during our stay.” <Minutes of the Twelve>
<July 3. Egyptian Mummies.> On the 3rd. of July, came to to exhibit some Egyptian Mummies. There were four human figures, [p. 595] together with some two or more rolls of papyrus, covered with <July 3.> Hierogliphic, figures and devices. As had been told <4.> that I could translate them, he brought me some of the characters, and I gave him the interpretation, and like a gentleman <6. Certificate of > he gave me the following certificate,
“ July 6th 1835
“This is to make known to all who may be desirous, concerning the knowledge of Mr Joseph Smith. Junr. in deciphering the Ancient Egyptian Heiroglyphic characters, in my possession, which I have, in many emminent cities, shewed to the most learned: And, from the information that I could ever learn, or meet with, I find that of Mr Joseph Smith, Junr, to correspondent correspondend in the most minute matters.” (signed) “, traveling with, and proprietor of Egyptian Mummies.”
<Sunday. 5. Hull Barton rejected> Sunday 5th. I preached in the afternoon.— Hull Burton,— or Michael H. Barton tried to get into the church, but was not willing to confess and forsake all his sins, and was rejected. [HC 2:235]
<6 Purchase of the Egyptian Mummies.> Soon after this, some of the Saints at , purchased the Mummies and Papyrus (a description of which will appear hereafter) and I, with and , as scribes, commenced <Translation of some of the Characters.> the translation of some of the characters or hieroglyphics, and much to our joy found that one of the rolls contained the writings of Abraham; another the writings of Joseph of Egypt, &c, a more full account <of which> will appear in their place, as I proceed to examine or unfold them. Truly can we say the Lord is beginning to reveal the abundance of peace and truth.
<9.> on the 9th. I rode to in company with Elder <14. Council of the presidency. Trial of Testimony of Joseph Smith .> and others. On the 14 a charge was preferred against Elder , to a council of the presidency, for unchristian like conduct, in breaking a certain sacred covenant, made September 2 4th 1834. I instructed the council on points of duty such as observing covenants, &c, and testified to the truth of the above covenant. President testified that he, himself framed the above covenant, and that at the time, said that he had a witness that it was the will of the Lord that he should conscerate the surplus of <> what would be for his and his family’s support. stated that agreed to let <the> Presidency and others, have money on loan for the printing of the Book of Revelations, if he could control his property, <Decision> in one year, or, as soon as he obtained it.— Decided that broke the covenant which he made September 4th. 1834. Therefore he is not a member of this church, unless he make satisfaction to those whom he injured. Also < tried> was complained of, as having spoken evil of dignities, by saying that “the high Council had the wrong tree to bark up.” which [HC 2:236] was testified to <by> , , &c It was decided that shall make public confession to the satisfaction of the injured, and walk as a saint in all things [p. 596] This curse shall be upon them, the hand of the Lord shall be upon <July 14.> them, until they repent in sackcloth and ashes, and shall touch <affect> <them> their temporal <and spiritual interest> unless they repent. [HC 2:237]
<17. Minutes of the Twelve.> “July 17the. the twelve met in conference, agreeably to previous appointment, on at St Johnsbury Vermont. Resolved <that> this state be the Limits of this conference, and include the branches in Littleton, Dalton < Conference> and Landaff, of in New Hampshire to be called the Conference
The St Johnsbury branch contained 4 numbered 41, members; Danville, 23; <Names of Churches> Charlton, 21; Jay, 11; Dalton, 15; Landaff, 4; Littleton, 10; Andover, Vt. 15; Bendon , 7; and N. York, 17: Six of the council addressed the conference on principles of faith and action. — Adjourned to the <18> 18th. when the remaining six, enforced the necessity of sending up wise men, and purchasing lands according to the commandments, which they readily agreed to do. Sunday 19th. our <Sunday. 19> public meeting was attended by more than a thousand people, and during our conference nine were baptized.
<Translating the Book of Abraham &c.> The remainder of this month, I was continually engaged in translating an alphabet to the Book of Abraham, and arrangeing a grammar of the Egyptian language as practiced by the ancients.
<August 2.> August 2d being the Sabbath I preached a part of the day. [HC 2:238]
<Minutes of Council 4.> “, August, 4th 1835. A high council of the church of Christ of Latter Day Saints assembled in conference, consisting of Presidents Joseph Smith, Jun., , , , , and , and others, to take into consideration certain items contained in letters from abroad; one from , presiding elder of the Conference; and one from Elder .
The first reads as follows,
<Letter from > “ July 29th. 1835. Dear Brother, Elder called on this church last thursday, on his way east soliciting donations and subscriptions for finishing the in your place. Although the subject of such a mission, in conexion with his name, had been mentioned in the Messenger and Advocate, still, as no other method had been taken to impress the subject on our minds, it had measurably passed out, or ceased to make any impression. Therefore. we were in some degree taken on surprise. The Twelve, the Bishop, nor any others clothed with authority, have ever mentioned this subject to us, except incidentally, to the recollection of any of the church. It surely was never made a subject of public instruction; as had just reason to expect it had been, he felt an embarrassment peculiar to such a situation. He undertook to preach to us yesterday, but from the aforesaid embarrassment, or the deadness, or the covetousness of the church, he could get none of the spirit of the Lord to assist him. I am free to say that I attributed more to the latter cause than the former. Yet, notwithstanding, we made out in donations, and Subscriptions that I trust will be realized $341.87½. May the Lord bless and prosper him, and all his faithful servants, and may [p. 597]
they find favor in the sight of God and man, is the prayer of your unworthy Brother. ”. “To ”
<August 4 Council's views> From this short letter we discover that the elders failed in the outset, to fill their great and important mission, as they know that God has commanded us to build a , in which we receive an endowment, previous to the redemption of Zion, and that Zion could not be redeemed until this takes place; knowing that the committee were to journey for the express purpose of soliciting donations, they have failed to hold them up, and set forth this first important thing. And in consequence God has not blessed them as he otherwise would. We remind you of these things in the name of the Lord, and refer you to the Book of [HC 2:239] Covenants, 2d Section. 2 part, and 12th Paragraph, and ask did we not instruct you to remember first the house, Secondly the cause of Zion, and then the publishing the word to the nations?
<’s Letter, to his wife.> The other Referred to, is an extract from Elder ’s letter to his wife, as follows; “You say that it will not be in your power to go to school this summer,— I am glad that it is not, since has returned and given me a description of the manner in which it is conducted, though we do not wish to cast any <Council’s dcision> reflections.” This the council consider to be a libel on the face of it: says “We do not wish to cast any reflections,” when the highest insult and reflections are cast, by it, upon the church, the presidency, and those who are held in much higher estimation in the sight of God and this church, than themselves. The vote of the council was, we hereby inform Elders. and , that we withdraw our fellowship from them until they return and make satisfaction face to <To the Twelve.> face. We further inform the twelve, that, as far as we can learn from the churches through which we have travelled, you have set yourselves up as an independent council, subject to no authority of the church, a kind of outlaws. This impression is wrong, and will, if persisted in, bring down the wrath and <The other ten to finish the Conference.> indignation of heaven upon your heads. The other ten are directed to proceed on and finish the conferences, and the two may act their own judgment whether to proceed or <Letter from .> return. President Joseph Smith Junr. read to the council a letter from elder , which was approved and filled our hearts with joy. A Letter was presented from Elder <Letter from . > . The council refer him to the commandment, which requires none to learn or bring their families without revelation, or decision of the high council. We discover an error in ’s letter. The He says “To the able preaching of and and .” We conclude that if it had been the preaching of the Lord, as it should have been, he would have had the honor and not these men. To close we add that unless this epistle is heeded in all its parts, in its full force, those who rebel against it, shall be dealt with by the Lord accordingly, for we ask, being agreed as touching this thing. [p. 598]
We wish you to understand, that your duty requires you to seek first <August 4> the kingdom of heaven and its righteousness, that is, attend to the first things first, and then all things will be added, and that complaint about your families will be less frequent. Dont preach yourselves crucified for your wives sake, but remember that Christ was crucified, and you are sent out to be special witnesses of this thing. Men do not wish to hear these little things, for there is no salvation in them, but there is in the other. [HC 2:240]
<The ten.> Let the hands of the ten be strengthened, and let them go forth in the name of the Lord, in the power of their mission, giving diligent heed to the direction of the Holy Spirit. We say be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might, for great things await you, and great blessings are in store for you.
<Power of the two upon the Seventy.> Let the power of the two be upon the seventy, until the two make full satisfaction; for the seventy shall be blessed, and are blessed. That man who presumes to speak evil of the dignities which God has set in his church, to his family, or to any body else, shall be cursed in his generation. Remember the 109th. Psalm. His Bishoprick shall be taken from him unless he speedily repents. Be it known that God is God, and when he speaks, let all the congregation say, Amen. We have evil insinuations enough in to grapple with, that are suggested by the father of lies, without having them from those who are sent out to put down insinuations. May God bless you to be more wise in future, Amen.” , Clerk.”
<7. Conference of the Twelve. Mass. Conference Elder Chase’s License taken. Elder Holmes Licence taken.> “Bradford, Massachusetts, August 7th. nine of the travelling high council, met and decided that the limits of the conference embrace the state to be called the Conference. Elder Chase had his licence and membership taken from him because of gambling for money, and then breaking bread to the saints before he confessed his sins. Elder Holmes licence was taken from him in consequence of a disagreement between him and his wife which was of long standing; it was therefore considered that if a man cannot preserve peace in his own family he is not qualified to rule the church of God. A Letter of complaint was written to , by elder Gibson Smith, of <Elder > Norfolk, Connecticut, again[s]t elder , upon which he was suspended and referred to the conference at Bradford for trial. No one appeared to substantiate the complaint, he was therefore acquitted on that point: but upon further enquiry it was proved that he had erred in spirit and in doctrine, and was considerably inclined to enthusiasm, and much lifted up; The council therefore took his licence from him, until he become more instructed, and also get his spirits and <Elder J. Patton excommunicated.> feelings more amalgamated with his brethren. Elder James Patton of North Providence, R<hode> I.s<land>, was excommunicated for improper conduct, and, refusing to give up his licence, he was ordered to be published in the “Messenger and Advocate.” [HC 2:241] The people in this region were [p. 599]
generally hard and unbeleiving, and but little preaching called, for <August 7.> except by the church. The <appointment> for our conference at Dover New Hampshire, was recalled on account of the small number of disciples <Appointments changed> in that place, and no business of importance to be transacted, also, the conference at and Farmington were altered so as to close at Farmington one one month earlier than the former appointment, and forwarded notice by mail. Clerk”
<8. council Father Duncan.> August 8th. a council was held in for the purpose of laying hands on father Duncan and others, of the sons of Zion.
<10 Minutes of High Council.> “The High council of assembled August 10th. to hear < tried> complaint of President Joseph Smith Jur against Elder , in that he had failed to correct do his duty in correcting his children, and instructing them in the way of truth and righteousness; which was proved, and decision given accordingly. confessed the correctness of the decision, and promised to make public acknowledgement, before the church. Clerk.” [HC 2:242]
<General Assembly 17.> A General Assembly of the church of Latter Day Saints was held at on the 17th. of August, 1835, to take into consideration the labors of the Committee appointed by a General Assembly of the church, on the 24th. of September, 1840 1834 for the purpose of arrangeing the items of the doctrine of Jesus Christ for the government of the Church. The names of the Committee are <were> Joseph Smith Junr., , , and , who having finished said book <object of the assembly> according to the instructions given them, deem it necessary to call a general assembly of the church to see whether the Book be approved, or not, by the authorities of the Church, that it may, if approved, become a Law, and a rule of faith and practice to the church, wherefore, and , members of the first presidency, (Presidents Joseph Smith Junr and being absent, on a visit to the <Joseph absent. Clerks> Saints in ) appointed , , and , Clerks, and proceeded to organize the whole assembly as follows; They organized the high council of the church at , and Presidents , and proceeded and organized the high council of the church in . Bishop organized his counsellors of the church in [HC 2:243] , and acting bishop, , organized the counsellors of the Church in : and also Presidents , , and , organized the council of the seventy; and also, Elder , acting President, organized the travelling elders; and also , acting President, organized the Priests; and also , acting President organized the Teachers; and also , acting President organized the Deacons; and they also, as the assembly [p. 600] was large, appointed , , <August 17. General Assembly> Andrew H. Aldrich, , and Oliver Higley, assistant Presidents of the day, to assist in preserving order and so forth, in the whole assembly. Elder being appointed Chorister, a hymn was then sung and the services of the day opened by the prayer of President , and the solemnities of Eternity rested upon the audience. another hymn was then sung: after transacting some business for the church such as ordaining Morris Phelps to the High Priesthood: John to the first seventy: Sherman Gilbert an elder; and blessing , , Benjamin Gifford, , and Joseph Hartshorn, the <Adjournment.> assembly adjourned for one hour.
<authorities rebuked for inpunctuality> Afternoon. A hymn was sung, when arose and rebuked some of the authorities for not being in their seats at the time appointed. arose and introduced the <Book of Doctrine and Covenants> “Book of Doctrine and Covenants of the Church of the Latter Day Saints” in behalf of the committee: he was followed by , who explained the manner by which they intended to obtain the voice of <Manner of obtaining the voice of the Assembly.> the assembly for or against said book. According to said arrangement, , bore record that the book presented to the assembly, was true. President , also, arose, and testified that it was true. Elder taking the lead of the high Council in , bore record that the revelations in said book were true, and that the lectures were judiciously arranged and compiled, and were prof