Minutes and Discourse, 18 April 1844

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Thursday April 18th. 1844 9 o clock A.M. Council met pursuant to adjournment. Prest. J. Smith in the chair
The chairman introduced E[lde]r and to the council and requested to explain to them the nature of this organization upon which arose & stated at some length the nature of the council proving its importance and glory by many passages of scripture. He called upon them to say if they would willingly comply with the rules of the council.
They signified their full assent
Whereupon on motion they were received as members by unanimous vote and [p. [142]] took their seats in order.
The chairman then arose and said that the council was full. He called upon the clerk to read over the names of the members which was doned, during which time the chairman stated the reasons why some of the members were absent and where they were gone.
On motion the name of the council was read and followed by explanation from the chair.
The clerk read the minutes of the last council which were accepted
Er then arose and said he could not express the satisfaction he felt at the privilege he enjoyed. He now understands the nature of the meeting & has no doubt with regard to the results. [p. [143]] He believes our deliverance is nearer than anticipated by many—when the stone cut out of the mountain without hands will fill the whole earth. He considers this the greatest events of his life.
Er considers this the greatest day of his life. He feels happy for the privilege and for the instructions given. He had come for instruction that he might be happy with the rest of his brethren.
The chairman called upon to open the council by prayer which was done.
The chairman went out a few minutes during which time Er sung some verse composed [p. [144]] by Er .
The chairman returned and requested to repeat the song, which was done, after which the house was called to order and the chairman requested Er to read an article from the Nauvoo Neighbor in reply to an article from the Washington Globe of M[ar]ch 14.
Er , after reading the above article requested permission to withdraw, in order to correct the typographical errors in the document. Leave was given Before leaving he observed that the committee had done something preparatory for report and hoped in a little while they would be able to present something worth having.
The chair called upon the committee [p. [145]] for report whereupon of the Committee arose and read so much of the document as was prepared as follows,—
We, the people of the Kingdom of God, knowing that all power emanates from God, that the earth is his possession, and he alone has the right to govern the nations and set in order the kingdoms of this world; that he only has a right to institute laws and establish decrees for the government of the human family; that he is our Father in heaven; and we, his legitimate children, inhabiting his footstool, and that no rule, law, government, dominion or power, unless instituted by him, can be productive [p. [146]]
of the greatest happiness, prosperity, exaltation and glory of his subjects:— And knowing also that none of the nations, kingdoms or governments of the earth do acknowledge the creator of the Universe as their Priest, Lawgiver, King and Sovereign, neither have they sought unto him for laws by which to govern themselves;— And knowing also, that there is not an original kingdom on the earth that holds the rightful authority from the king of Kings and Lord of Lords, to govern his subjects: but that all the nations have obtained their power, rule and authority by usurpation, rebellion, bloodshed, tyranny and fraud:—
And knowing also, [p. [147]]
that no government, which has thus originated, has the disposition and power to grant that protection to the persons and rights of man, viz. life, liberty, possession of property, and pursuit of happiness, which was designed by their creator to all men; but that the cruelty, oppression, bondage, slavery, rapine, bloodshed, murder, carnage, desolation, and all the evils that blast the peace, exaltation, and glory of the universe, exist in consequence of unrighteous rule, and unlawful dominion, by which the pure, the patriotic, the noble, the virtuous, the philanthropic, the righteous and wise servants of God have [p. [148]]
been persecuted, hunted, whipped, scourged, exiled, massacreed, sawn asunder, crucified and slain in all ages of the world, under all earthly authorities, and by every form of government, from the days of murderous Cain, to the days of the exterminating of ; And that all the pride, corruption, impurity, intrigue, spiritual wickedness in high places, party spirit, faction, perplexity and distress of nations, are the natural results of these illegitimate governments:— And knowing that God hath created all men free and equal:— And having sought in vain among all the nations of the earth, to [p. [149]]
find a government instituted by heaven; an assylum for the opprest; a protector of the innocent, and a shield for the defenceless:— an impenetrable Aegis for the honorable of all nations; uncorrupted by the usurpations of designing men, the contaminating influence of the love of Gold, and the lawless intrigues of aspiring demagogues:— unfettered by unrighteous legislation, and untrammelled by the mandates of an unjust judiciary; not degraded by a superstitious or religious influence: A Realm where liberty spreads undivided and operates unspent; and where truth and virtue are the centre and circumference [p. [150]]
of the nation; are as enduring as the hills of eternity, and as omnipotent as the voice of Jehovah:— To hasten the accomplishment of his purposes: To fulfil the predictions of the prophets to establish a pure government; to lift up an ensign to the nations, and establish a standard for all people, that the strength, and the power, and the glory, and the exaltation, and the kingdom, and the dominion under the whole heavens, may become the kingdom of our God and of his Christ, as has been predicted by all the holy prophets since the world began, to be brought to pass on the earth in the last days; where peace, union, harmony, fellowship, phi [p. [151]]
lanthropy, benevolence, virtue, and brotherly love shall reign triumphantly together in the bosom of every subject and where the elements, the light, the air, the water and the land shall be as free as the gift of their creator; where we can rest under the shadow of his wing, and where the supreme law of the land shall be the word of Jehovah:—
We have supplicated the great I am, that he would make known his will unto his servants, concerning this, his last kingdom, and the law, by which his people shall be governed: And the voice of the Lord unto us was,— Verily thus saith the Lord, this is the name by [p. [152]]
which you shall be called, the kingdom of God and his Laws, with the keys and power thereof, and Judgement in the hands of his servants, Ahman Christ,
Art. 1st. I Am, the Lord thy God, ruleing the armies of heaven above, and among the nations of the earth beneath; I have created all men of one blood; I set up one, and I put down another, and to me alone belongs the right, the power, the majesty, the glory, and the dominion; I alone am King of Kings, and Lord of Lords; I alone am the rightful lawgiver to man; I alone have a right to judge the inhabitants of the earth, which is my footstool; [p. [153]]
and I will acknowledge no other law, rule, power, Authority or dominion, than that which is instituted by me, the great I Am, And no other government, Kingdom, Dominion, authority, power, rule, or law, shall be acknowledged by my people.
Art. 2nd. I the Lord will do nothing but what I have revealed or shall reveal unto my servants the prophets and I have appointed one man, holding the keys and authority, pertaining to my holy priesthood, to whom I will reveal my laws, my statutes, my ordinances, my Judgements, my will and pleasure concerning my kingdom on the earth. [p. [154]]
Art. 3rd. And my Servant and Prophet whom I have called and chosen shall have power to appoint Judges and officers in my kingdom, And my people shall have the right to choose or refuse those officers and judges, by common consent: And the judges who shall be approved by my people shall condemn the guilty, and let the innocent go free! And shall have power to execute, and shall execute, justice and judgement in righteousness, and punish transgressors throughout all my kingdom on the earth; and if the judges or officers transgress, they shall be punished according to my laws.— [p. [155]]
After got through arose and said that they found on entering on this subject they were treading of on holy ground. In contemplating the situation of nations and our situation, they feel placed in a delicate position. They cant refer to any constitution of the world because they are corrupt. He referred to the leading article in the document. He said that the chairman might well say that he had appointed them that work that they might learn that they were fools. He was willing to acknowledge himself a fool. He related an anecdote concerning a little child who was questioned on the works of creation. President Smith wants us to make oxen and he will make bulls of them. They are willing to do all they [p. [156]] can. They are satisfied there is no constitution or law calculated for the universal good of the universal world but those principles which emanate from God. If they can get intelligence from God they can write correct principles, if not, they cannot. He was always convinced that no power can guide us right but the wisdom of God. It needed a revelation from God to shew the very first principles of the kingdom of God. No one knew how to baptize <​or​> lay on hands untill it was revealed through our chairman. National affairs are equally as far fallen and degenerate as religious matters. This nation is as far fallen and degenerate as any nation under heaven. When [p. [157]] we were in the world, we were ignorant with regard to correct principles. We are now a little differently situated. We have a portion of the spirit, but if we get the document any where right it will be because God gives it; and if not, we know nothing but what either you [JS] or God teaches us.
Er considered that had spoken the feelings of the committee in full.
On motion the committee had further time allowed
Er arose and said that when the council first assembled he took the liberty to lay out a preface to future remarks, but he did not [p. [158]] exactly follow the council of our deceased who recommeded him always to go into the little end of the horn, and he was sure to come out at the big end. He had gone into the big end at the commencement and had hurt his lungs and had to come out at the little end. He considers the appointment of the committee to be wisdom; that they might labor to bring forth what was in them. He feels that he will never be contented untill he sees an establishment in existence which will protect men in their rights. We want to continue our search untill we find those principles which will secure to every man his rights. [p. [159]]
If all the wisdom and knowledge of this council is exerted we can do something, and when we have done all we can we can come to the great God and obtain the perfect law. Our researches have done us good. By taking this course we gain wisdom & prudence much better than we would if we had set down like chickens to wait for the Lord to give it. We will know by this experience how to touch the hearts and feelings of men, because we have been in the mill ourselves. He feels this <​these​> to be the happiest day days of his life. He is willing to use what exertions he can, to roll on the work. He believes that by using [p. [160]] all our efforts, before we are aware, we will be governing the world. He compared the situation of the world to an old ship without a rudder on the midst of the sea. If our rudder is gone, we will endeavor to throw out our cable and try to bring the old ship to land. At the organization of this council he was in favor of the question. He gave his reasons, but he considers that we are not tied to any country. The great God holds control of the universe. Let the nations go on and drive themselves to ruin. All men appear to be dissatisfied. If you ever make a corporal of a man he is ready to rise up and cut your throat, he is so much bigger than you. [p. [161]] He believes is as good a place to enjoy our liberty as any other place. There is as little corruption & wickedness here as any where else. If their are the remains of the Indians here, we did not slay them. Let it be to the disgrace of the government. We are free, and their is not the first tie to bind us to the constitution. As soon as a man, or set of men becomes unpopular they can be murdered, robbed, banished, and no power to protect them. It is a law of nations that protection binds a man to his sovereign, but as soon as the law ceases to protect a man in his rights he is free. We, as a people have not been protected, consequently we are free. [p. [162]]
He is for establishing a kingdom upon the principles of liberty and universal freedom. He wants to have the privilege of wearing his beard till it grows as long as his arm if he wants to, while it does not stick into another mans face. It is an acknowledged fact that in or a man with $10.000 in his pocket can murder his friend or neighbor and walk off without molestation. In view of such a state of things he has long reflected that we ought to have a new government. He dont want any thing to do with the “old horse’s head,” or tail, nor the beast, nor the false prophet. One difficulty with the nations is that they have made so many rules, [p. [163]] that a man cannot go abroad without being jammed at. He referred to the mode of discussing large volumns of rules in Congress at eight dollars a day. Also the legislature of , legislating day after day to put down gambling and would gamble themselves all the night. He concluded by relating an anecdote of a legislator making a speech on lumbering.
Er arose to refer to a certain item in the document which had forced itself on his mind. It was a matter which had been much harped on by the fathers, but which he considered was not correct. In hoisting a standard for the gaze of the world, [p. [164]] to have inscribed a statement which is not in accordance with our views. We do not want it. We do not want to inculcate principles which we will not carry into effect. We do not want those who are bigger fools than we are, to laugh at us. The item which I refer to is this. “All men are born free and equal”. Millions of our fellow men are born in bondage, they never enjoyed a breath of liberty. That all men should be free and should stand on equal grounds he believes, but they are now he dont believe. He knows that intelligence is power, that God manages and controls the affairs of the universe [p. [165]] as easy as we do a family. But are we equal with God? Was I born equal with your honor. I was born equally free, but I was not equal with you. The Lord told Abraham he was one of those master spirits from eternity, and because of this God chose him to be a father to the faithful. If you behold two spirits, or two planets, one greater than the other, is it not an evidence that there is yet another larger still. Every thing is independant in its own sphere, and as Dow used to say though we cant prevent the birds from flying over our heads, we can prevent them from building in our hair. He does not see that this idea [p. [166]] militates against the principle that all men should be born free, but is it possible that all should be born equal. Perhaps to change the expression a little we might convey a safer idea, that the world could not pick it. He wanted instruction on the subject.
On motion council adjourned till 2 o clock.
2 o clock P.M. Council met pursuant to adjournment Prest. J. Smith in the chair.
The council was opened by prayer by Uncle , after which Er sung the verses by as published in to days neighbor.
The subject touched upon this A.M. by was resumed, Prest. J. [p. [167]] Smith said, all men were in the designs of God created equal, and inasmuch as some had greater capacities than others, it was required of them to possess the greater philanthropy. The constitution gives the lie to itself. Instead of reading “all men are born free and equal”, it ought to read, “all men ought to be”
said the subject introduced by had pleased him. If there were any flows [flaws], he wanted them picking out, before it comes into the hands of the chairman. He wants the council to find all the cracks they can and expose them, and if they dont do it, they will tell them of it afterwards.
The chairman said he did not intend [p. [168]] to tear the thing to pieces, untill he had got the whole of it.
Er felt disposed to make a few remarks on the subject of the organization of the kingdom of God. Much has been said on the subject in this council, and a great many good things has been said. We are in perfect safety inasmuch as we are in the midst of such council. He had no fears but God would organize the kingdom right, and what he has seen in this assembly was nothing more than what he had looked for. At the first meeting, when the president stated that this was the commencement of the organization of the kingdom of God. He then felt as exalted views [p. [169]] as he could do. He contemplated kings, governments as they are. They sunk into oblivion when he compared them with this kingdom, which was only in embryo, and it would soon send forth its influence throughout the nations. There will no doubt be a regular organization. He has heard much said on the subject of bringing forth a constitution, but he considered himself highly honored to have this privilege of being accounted a fool, that when we had done all we were capable to do, we could have the Lord speak and tell us what is right. There is a great deal allready written We can form to ourselves independant of the word of the Lord the best system [p. [170]] of government on the earth; but after all this, when we have done all the Lord will make it just right. He can form a constitution by which he is willing to be governed. He is willing to be ruled by the means which God will appoint. He dont believe we can adopt laws for the government of people in futurity. We can, for the time being, point out laws for present necessities. He supposed there has not yet been a perfect revelation given, because we cannot understand it, yet we receive a little here and a little there. He should not be stumbled if the prophet should translate the bible forty thousand times over and yet it should be different in some places every time, because when God [p. [171]] speake, he always speaks according to the capacity of the people. The starting point for the government of the kingdom is in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, but he does not know how much more there is in the bosom of the Almighty. When he God sees that his people have enlarged upon what he has given us he will give us more. The sta[r]ting point is here, but God has not come here, He has sent his agent, his minister to act in his name. And if he has got an agent to dictate to us here the organization is here. When a man is clothed with authority to do all business for those who sent him, what he does [is?] right, and this is the kind of agent [p. [172]] we have got, and God appointed him We did not appoint him. If the Lord Almighty calls upon one of his servants as a minister, the nation to whom he is sent has no control over him whatever. If the Latter Day Saints believe that our prophet is fallen what are they going to do? How will they help themselves? It is the prerogative of the Almighty to differ from his subjects in what he pleases, or how, or when he pleases, and what will they do; they must bow to it, or kick themselves to death, or to hell. He [JS] can disagree with the whole church as he has a mind, and how? Because he is a perfect committee of himself. [p. [173]] We have elected our prophet to be our Prophet, Priest and King, but did we choose him? Or, did he choose us? Jeses said, ye have not chosen me but I have chosen you. Our prophet has chosen us, and what this people receives through him is law. He believes that if God was to speak to day he would say that our prophet should be appointed Prophet, Priest & King, and let him appoint what council he pleases. He cannot see the difference between a religious or political government, Suppose we take our families and go where there is no other inhabitants, and begin to govern ourselves. There is provisions for every character. If he do not do right he shall be tried by the author [p. [174]]ities &c and what would be the necessity to get up a constitution to govern us when we have all the revelations and laws to govern us, and punish us according to our crimes, We may say we will have a constitution because it is fashionable, but he would rather have the revelations to form a constitution from, than any thing else we can get. What the brethren have written is good, and he wished they could do the thing just right. And what if they should? Why by and by, they would probably take a kick and think they could do so and so independant of the prophet. He would rather have the pure revelations of [p. [175]] Jesus Christ as they now stand, to carry to the nations, than any thing else. He dont want the legs, nor the head, nor the back bones, nor any thing else of the old horse. We dont <​want​> to be like the sectarian churches, who, when they have seen errors would turn and run from the truth and run into deeper mud than before. Let our president be elected, and let the people say amen to it. He dont see any necessity of getting the constitution only just as far as we need it. There is not a man in this council but who, when he goes before the Lord remembers that we have a prophet between us and the Lord. If it was necessary, and we were where we could not get at the prophet, we could get [p. [176]] the revelations of the Lord straight.
Er wished to make a few suggestions and ask a few questions for the benifit of the council. It has been suggested that the kingdom of God and the church of God are one and the same thing. And it has been suggested that the church is one thing and the kingdom another. He wishes this council to shew, where is the dividing line, between the “kingdom of God,” and “the church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints”? and what laws will apply to the church and what laws to the kingdom. He does not want the chairman to tell it. He wants the council to tell it. And when this is done the [p. [177]] committee will be able to bring out something more next council.
remarked that the subject introduced by appeared to be new. His idea was, that there is to be a government formed that will establish a kingdom, that will shew itself in the form as spoken by the prophets. God has said he would set up a kingdom in the last days that should subdue, or swallow up all other kingdoms. This is what we are trying for. We want to bring about this government. We dont want a methodist, nor a baptist, nor presbyterian government, but we want that government that God has pointed out. The people will leave all other nations and [p. [178]] flow unto this government. As the committee have requested to have the line drawn to distinguish between the church of Jesus Christ and the kingdom of God. He does not think there is any dividing line about it. It is the kingdom of God and the church of God. At present he does not see any difference between them.
arose again to explain further. If the kingdom of God and the church are one, and the same, why this organization. If a man cannot belong to the church without the ordinances, how can they be members of the kingdom of God without the ordinances.
Er did not know [p. [179]] that he had much choice whether he should become a fool in the committee of three, or a committee of the whole. He thinks there is a difference exists in relation to the kingdom and the church He referred to Isaiahs words—“The kingdom and nation that will not serve thee shall perish &c.” If he is not mistaken in the principles of this government it is to secure the right of liberty in matters of conscience to men of every character, creed and condition in life. In it the Latter Day Saints might believe his peculiar doctrines and search as high and dig as deep as his capacity would allow. If a man wanted to make an idol and worship it without meddling [p. [180]] with his neighbor he should be protected. So that a man should be protected in his rights whether he choose to make a profession of religion or not. There is a plain difference. “The kingdom and the nation that will not serve thee,” What? Thee—that kingdom that God should set up; not the kingdom that will not serve God. It should combine to break to peices all other kingdoms. He does not want the committee to be proved fools more than himself, He wants to bear a part in the folly. What jurisdiction has the church over the kingdoms of the world? All who will obey the doctrines of the church, throw themselves under the [p. [181]] jurisdiction of its laws. The church has only jurisdiction over its members but the kingdom of God has jurisdiction over all the world.
said that while he had been listening to the remarks made he had had many thoughts of a variety of character roll through his mind. He referred to the feelings he had when he first embraced the gospel also when he left his native country to dwell in this land. He had then some idea that God would set up a kingdom but did not think it would present itself in the form in which he now sees it. He hardly expected to live to see it, but thought his children would, and felt to rejoice at his situation to [p. [182]] day. He dwelt considerable on the principle of Agency.
Er offered another item for consideration, which is this; Some had suggested that the constitution in view was to be unchangeable; others that it would be changed according to the circumstances of the people. Now, will the “kingdom of God” become perfected as the legitimate results of the operation of the constitution now to be adopted, or will it be perfected through the alterations of the constitution which may take place hereafter to suit the situation of the earth and kingdom? When all the nations are [p. [183]] gathered and all know the Lord will they be governed by the same constitution.
Er said the kingdom of God had been a subject which had long occupied his attention. In regard to the church and kingdom of God there appeared to be in some instances a difference and in other places they appeared to be the same. In order to draw the distinction he must have refference to the name of the kingdom. He cant conceive wherein there should exist a difference between them other than that God had gathered together a large people which was called the church, and from the midst of them he would organize his kingdom. He is still led to believe the [p. [184]] two terms mean the same thing. The kingdom dont consist in meat and drink, but in righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Ghost. If this be the case how can a man be a member of the kingdom of God and not enjoy its blessings. There are members of this council who are not members of the church, but they have subscribed to the motion that your honor should be their prophet, priest & king. How then can men be members of this body and not be members of the body of Christ. He referred to the supper of the rich man as spoken of by the Saviour, concerning the wedding garment. He next referred to the church being only [p. [185]] 14 years old, and at that age God says, now I must have a kingdom, legislators &c. He feels that he is surrounded with friends of the finest feelings and sensations, and the strongest ties of any other men upon the earth.
Er thought it did not make any odds to him whether a man belonged to the church or whether he made no profession, but was a member of this kingdom. He rejoiced to see things as they now present themselves, to see the abundance of light manifest. He dont believe that we should always be doing things over and over, but we must do as we are taught, when we shall be ruled by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God. As to [p. [186]] a man not being a member of the church it made him think of the net spoken of by the Saviour which gathered both good and bad, or it would not have gathered him. He wants to see the day when we shall drink new wine in the kingdom and none to make them afraid.
Er felt to differ with some of the preceeding speakers, but inasmuch as we had liberty to speak what was in us whether sense or nonsense he wanted to enjoy the privilege. He thinks there is a distinction between the church of God and the kingdom of God in one sense any way. He believes that there is an organization which is called a [p. [187]] church and a kingdom, and in this there different offices &c. There are certain ordinances whereby we become members of the church. We may advance and by means of ordinances we may obtain to the priesthood, and in that there are different grades. They are distinct, one from the other, and yet all identified in one. So with the kingdom of God, we may embrace all the vast creations of God. His government extends over them all, even the Hades of the Hebrews is a part of the kingdom of our heavenly father, or in other words the Van Diemans land of the British Empire, where those who have transgressed are sent to atone for their crimes. Under this [p. [188]] view, the whole form a part of the kingdom of God, but there are different grades. Different laws regulate the celestial, to what regulates the terrestrial globe, also the celestial [telestial?]. With all the different grades, laws &c, yet all are subject to general laws in the government of Jehovah. He does this to illustrate his views in regard to the kingdom on the earth. To be organized so as to extend its benign influence over the whole family of man, for the time is coming when a king shall execute justice in all the earth. At the same time that his people are worshiping in his temple, he will cause the nations to beat their swords into ploughshares [p. [189]] and their spears into pruning hooks. The object is to ameliorate the condition of the human family. Get them so that you can preach the gospel to them, and get them to be baptized for the remission of sins; the influence of Gods kingdom is thereby exerted over them. They have been rebuked by this means; they acknowledge the government of Jehovah and submit to its laws, and yeild obedience to its officers. He has been led to think that this work is not to be the work of a moment. After the Jews have come to Jerusalem &c then shall the heathen begin to learn of Jehovah, and the principles which have actuated us in the organization [p. [190]] of this kingdom. When they have obeyed the first principles of the gospel they rise one step higher and then receive the order of the priesthood and go on from step to step.
Er wished to make a few remarks on two or three subjects if he could get awake. He believes that the kingdom of God that has here been organized will hold jurisdiction over fifty times as far as the church, so far as this world is concerned. He considers that this organization is designed to break down tyranny and oppression all over the world. He related an anecdote concerning his being shipwrecked. The establishment of the Church of God [p. [191]] was the stepping stone to the establishment of the kingdom of God and in its organization individuals had been called who were not members of the church, and he considered this a great argument in favor of the kingdom having influence over the nations of the earth. He believes that as soon as we get through with our deliberations we will have to drive a stake down here. Rome whipped Carthage all out and was but a small city. We have a strong host and we can swallow Carthage all up, and he wants to go on and proclaim free trade and tailors or rather sailors rights even in this place. He believes this is the place [p. [192]] where we should establish the government, and let this be the grand rallying point; and if the enemies come upon us, let us stand, every man in defence of the laws of the kingdom. He referred to the Missourians and the feelings of the public in regard to them. This is a good place to set the kingdom up and believes it is the place where it will be set up.
Er was of the same opinion in regard to setting up the kingdom here. We can try to elect our president for a scare crow, but how can a man be elected president when he is already proclaimed king. Can he give up [p. [193]] his office for a smaller one. He is perfectly willing to go and electioneer, to blind the eyes of the people, but he wants to see our king upheld in his office here. He does not view the church and kingdom of God as one and the same thing. If it requires one man to do a certain thing to obtain salvation, the same will be required of all others. He referred to the order of the planets and compared them to the Twelve apostles. He reffered to the law which governed the eclipses and the heavenly bodies. He compared the kingdom of God to a ring, but does not consider that the ring has been welded yet. It is drawn out, and when it gets welded will form a perfect [p. [194]] kingdom. He compared the members of the kingdom and their manner of received receiving light and intelligence to the sun and minor planets. He dont believe that any law under heaven has any right to react the heads of the church. The kingdom of God must have a law as perfect as itself. 500 nothings make but nothing still, which is admitted by all men except the methodist clergy. His brethren have been oppressed and they want to get from under it. We have as good a right as any other kingdom to form a constition, if we are literal born subjects of this country. He believes [p. [195]] every man will be required to bind himself to his covenants by an oath He wont go in for this kingdom being a kingdom of slaves. If they are slaves let them be slaves to the king.
Er said he understood that the committee wanted the feelings of the council on the subject of the document, but he considered the subject had been left. There appeared to be a difference of opinion in regard to the church and kingdom. He referred to the officers required in the organization of both. He considers that the kingdom is something more important than the church and is approximating nearer to God. We are inviting all men to come in. People ask universally do we [p. [196]] admit any other people only those of our faith, to associate with us. He believes that the laws instituted for the government of the kingdom will govern the church also. A man may become a member of this kingdom and not obey the ordinance through which we have the promise of remission of sins and the gift of the Holy Ghost. He is in favor of having something hoisted to the nations to let them know what we are going to do, to shew the world that their wisdom is foolishness with God. He dont think that God will give any law that will circumscribe us more than our own conscience. He is not in favor of a multiplicity of laws. By multiplicity of laws a man may [p. [197]] get clear of transgression, and is made an offender for a small matter. He feels willing to subscribe to any laws that God will give. He dont hardly believe that the standard will be exalted here. He dont believe we have room. He dont consider that what we have done is childs play. We have a man delegated by this council, now offering to buy . No doubt he is there, endeavoring to negotiate for and are we going to desert him? No. We have sent to Congress, and no doubt our petition will be granted, to raise 10000 troops. He dont think we are playing childs play. He is in favor of moving the seat of government to . Our president dont care to [p. [198]] go to . We come here to establish such a kingdom as never was established. Our Elders are considered as the most ignorant men in the world, but when they open their mouths, they silence the multitudes. We calculate to revolutionize the world by intelligence. The feelings of men are blunted by ignorance. War has on all occasions made men savage.
The chairman said in relation to , that if we can accomplish our object it places us on a firm and strong footing, because if we have the sanction of Congress to our Charter it will make us an independant government. It will set us everlastingly free, and give us the [p. [199]] troops to guard us and protect us from any invasion. Perhaps it is not necessary that we should go to , it is necessary that we should establish independant governments there. We consider ourselves the head, and the tail. We can make laws and send them abroad and not say anything to them about it, untill we get ourselves firmly set beyond their power. I have no disposition to go to , but here is wants to go; and if we can get our petition granted he will go and raise volunteers, and go and protect . We must use policy. We can go on and have our laws and call it a part of our religion and they [p. [200]] cannot interfere untill we get strong enough to protect ourselves. It is not wisdom to use the term “king” all the while. Let us use the term “proper source” instead of “king” and it will be all understood and no person can take advantage. A man can preach through all the world and use words which the devil cannot detect.
There is a distinction between the Church of God and kingdom of God. The laws of the kingdom are not designed to effect our salvation hereafter. It is an entire, distinct and separate government. The church is a spiritual matter and a spiritual kingdom; but the kingdom which Daniel saw was not a spiritual kingdom, but was designed [p. [201]] to be got up for the safety and salvation of the saints by protecting them in their religious rights and worship. Any thing that would tolerate man in the worship of his God under his own vine and fig-tree would be tolerated of God. The literal kingdom of God, and the church of God are two distinct things. The gifts of prophets, evangelists &c never were designed to govern men in civil matters. The kingdom of God has nothing to do with giving commandments to damn a man spiritually. It only has power to make a man amenable to his fellow man. God gave commandments that if a man killed &c he should be killed himself, but it did not damn [p. [202]] him. In relation to the constitution of the , there is but one difficulty, and that is, the constitution provides the things which we want but lacks the power to carry the laws into effect. We want to alter it so as to make it imperative on the officers to enforce the protection of all men in their rights
He then shewed how the constitution ought to be amended.
Men are complaining all over the , and we have the most reason to complain.
The committee must go to work and accomplish the amendment.
Er said that the items referred to by our chairman were not in the constitution but in the de [p. [203]]claration of Independance.
offered a motion to adjourn untill next thursday at 10 o clock.
Er wished to say that the chairman had given his ideas on the subjects last before the house. He also wished to lodge an excuse for not being present at the last meeting and also requested an indulgence, providing he could not be here at our next meeting. He feels proud of the privilege of being with us, and considers that the things in which we are engaged are of the greatest importance.
Er arose arise to express his gratitude for being admitted to the council and to the president for proposing his name [p. [204]]
wished to retain his standing in the council. He had been solicited to go to and would like to go, but if the council were not willing he did not feel disposed to lose his standing for any other consideration.
On motion had leave to go to .
Er s excuse was received.
Er wished the chair to instruct the new members, relative to the importance of all the members being present.
The chairman gave the necessary instruction, and said some things relative to men being disposed to hearken &c.
said that during his [p. [205]] absence he should hold himself bound to all that was done by the council.
The question to adjourn was recalled and agreed to, whereupon the council adjourned untill next thursday at 10 o clock.— [12 lines blank] [p. [206]]