Previous chapter Table of Contents Next chapter
Vol. III. No. 18.] CITY OF NAUVOO, ILL. JULY 15, 1842. [Whole No. 54
Of the travels and ministry of Elder Orson Hyde.
Trieste, January 1, 1842.
DEAR BRETHREN OF THE TWELVE,
As the blushing orb of light from his eastern temple sends forth, this morning over Alpine heights, his streaming columns of golden brightness to greet the earth with a happy new year, to welcome its arrival, and crown it with a celestial radiance, I might be justly charged with ingratitude towards a gracious and merciful Providence, and a want of generosity and reciprocal kindness towards my brethren, did I neglect to acknowledge the kind aid and protection which heaven has granted me in answer to your faith and prayers. Permit me, therefore, to commence my letter by wishing you all "a happy new year;" and through you allow me to extend the same wish to all the saints, both in England and America; but particularly to my wife, and her dear little children.
I am happy to improve the opportunity, which this hour affords, of writing to you, and that happiness is increased by a firm conviction, that a letter from your unworthy brother, in the Lord, will be received by you with a friendship and cordiality corresponding to that which now animate my bosom.
Since it has pleased the Lord to grant unto me health and prosperity-to protect me from the dangers of the climates-from the plague and pestilence that have carried death and mourning on their wing, and return me again in safety to a land of civilized life, these things demand my highest gratitude, as well as demonstrations of praise and thanksgiving, to His exalted name.
As a member, therefore, of your honorable quorum, bearing, in common with you, the responsibility under which HEAVEN has laid us, to spread the word of life among the perishing nations of the earth, allow me to say, that, on the 21st of October last, "my natural eyes, for the first time beheld" Jerusalem; and as I gazed upon it and its environs, the mountains and hills by which it is surrounded, and considered, that this is the stage upon which so many scenes of wonders have been acted, where prophets were stoned, and the Saviour [Savior] of sinners slain, a storm of commingled emotions suddenly arose in my breast, the force of which was only spent in a profuse shower of tears.
I entered the city at the west gate, and called on Mr. Whiting, one of the American missionaries at that place, to whom I had a letter of introduction from Monsieur Muratt, our consular agent at Jaffa. Mr. W. said, that in consequence of the unsettled state of his family, (having just removed to the house which he then occupied,) he was sorry to say it would not be convenient for him to invite me to share his hospitality; but very kindly went with me to the Latin convent, which is a sort of hotel or home for strangers, and there engaged for me my board and ledging [lodging] at a reasonable compensation, and said that he would keep a little watch to see that I was well taken care of. This expression of kindness did not escape my notice.
After I had been there an hour or two, Mr. Sherman, another American missionary, accompaneied [accompanied] by a Mr. Gager, from America, who, I think, was a licentiate from the Presbyterian or Congregational Church, called on me, and after some considerable conversation upon the state of affairs in general, in America, I introduced to them the subject of my mission to that place; and observed, that I had undertaken to do a good work in the name of the Lord, and had come there for a righteous purpose, and wished their co-operation and friendly aid. They assured me that they should be happy to render me any assistance in their power to do good. I thanked them for their kindness, and observed, that as I had had little or no rest since I left Beyrout [Beirut], I felt worn down with fatigue and a want of sleep, as well as being almost overcome by the excessive heat, and that I also wished to arrange some documents which I had, and then I should be happy to enjoy the privilege of an interview with them, and with Mr. Whiting at the same time. They said they would indulge me in my request at almost any time.
I had sent a lengthy communication to the Jews in Constantinople, in the French language, but had reserved a copy of it in the German. As this document set forth, clearly and plainly, the object of my mission there, I translated it into English in order that, I might lay the facts before them in as clear a point of light as possible.
Accordingly, after wearied nature had sufficiently reposed under sleep's balmy and refreshing shade, I called on Mr. Whiting, according to previous arrangements, and Messrs. Sherman and Gager soon came in. After the usual salutations were past, and all quietly seated, I expressed to them my gratitude for that opportunity of bearing testimony to the glorious reality, that the Lord was about to visit his people, and also my gratitude to HIM whose hand had been stretched out for my safety and protection, and also to bear me onward to the place where mercy, with all her celestial charms, was embodied in the person of his own Son.
I then took the liberty of reading the document containing the object of my mission there, and were it not for its length I would here insert it. After it was read, all sat in private meditation until Mr. Gager interrupted the silence by asking wherein the doctrines of our church differed from the doctrines of the established orthodox churches. I replied as follows:-"There are so many different kinds of orthodox doctrines, all differing one from the other, that it might be difficult to determine which one to be the standard by which ours should be tried; but, said I, with your permission, I will set forth and explain to you the principles of our faith, and then you can determine for yourselves wherein they differ from others." So, beginning at the ministration of the Angel of the Lord, I expounded unto them many things concerning the rise of the church, its organization and ordinances; and form and order of its government, after which Mr. Sherman spake as follows:-
"Now, we are here trying to do all the good we can, and have been for some length of time; and what more would you have us do or what more can we do?" I replied as follows:-"It appears to me, even allowing your cause to be just and right, that your time is spent here to little or no purpose; now, however, that I would be understood as charging you with idleness or inattention; but the strong and deep-rooted prejudices which reign in the breasts of the people here against you, that they will not even allow you to educate their children, when you propose to do it gratuitously, must render your labors extremely limited; and, further the genius of your policy does not admit of your making that exertion which the Saviour [Savior] of the world required his servants to make in former days. You receive a salary from a home institution, and by that institution you are directed to remain here whether the people will hear or not; whereas the Saviour [Savior] taught his disciples to depart, and shake the dust from their feet, against that house, city, or people, that would not hear them, and not spend their labor for that which did not profit."
To this Mr. Gager replied,-"although the fruits of our labors do not immediately appear, we ought not to be discouraged. We may labor, and other men may enter into our labors. The husbandman, after he hath sowed his seed, waiteth patiently until it hath received the former and latter rains; and, as the days of miracles are past, we cannot expect men to act now under the immediate direction of the Saviour [Savior] as they then did." I might have here observed, that it would be a great tax upon the patience of the husbandman, if it did not quite exhaust it, to sow his seed year after year, and reap no fruits of his labor. But-
I replied, that miracles had truly ceased; but, said I, why have they ceased? Mr. Gager said, because they were not necessary. I made answer, that Jesus formerly said to the people, "according to thy faith be it done unto thee;" and said I, I presume he is of the same mind still; but the people have no faith in the power of God, therefore no miraculous favors are shown them; and because the religious world have lost sight of their privileges, the horizon of their their minds beclouded, and faith driven from their hearts by the vain and foolish traditions of uninspired men, the Lord hath sent an holy Angel from the Temple of Light, bearing to the earth truth's unfading laurels, and has boldly asserted the rights and privileges of all who would seek the face and favor of the MOST HIGH. But against this heavenly message, streaming from the bosom of a compassionate God, with
the purest love and good-will to a fallen race, and beaming in the face of men with a celestial radience [radiance], is arranged the cold-hearted prejudices of an unbelieving world. Well did the Saviour [Savior] ask this question-"When the Son of Man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?" With this testimony have I come to Jerusalem; and in the name of my master, who here bore our sins, in his own body, on the tree, I warn all men, so far as I have opportunity, to beware how they lift their hands or their voices against it, for, by the voice of the Lord from heaven, am I made a witness of the eternal reality of what I have declared.
Mr. Whiting then asked if we acknowledged any to be christians except those who embraced our doctrines and joined our church? To this I replied in the following manner:-"We believe there are many in all the different churches, with many who are externally attached to no church, who serve the Lord according to the best light and knowledge they have, and this service is unquestionably acceptable in his sight; and those who have died in this condition have no doubt gone to receive the reward of their labors in the mansions of rest. But should He be pleased to send more light and truth into the world, or revive those principles of truth, which have been made to yield their sovereignty to the opinions of men, and they refuse to receive them, or walk in them, their service would cease to be acceptable to the Lord, and with no degree of propriety could we acknowledge them true christians; and we do know, and are sure, that the Lord has caused more light to shine, and that he will hold none guiltless who refuse to walk in it after the means of obtaining it are brought to their knowledge, and placed within their reach." These were hard sayings. They observed, that they could not say that these things were not as I had said; but to them they appeared incredibly strange.
I then requested that some of them would do me the favor of an introduction to some of the principle Jews in the place; but this request was greeted with a number of hems, which commonly mean no more than to allay a little irritation, or tickling in the throat; but on this occasion, from the peculiarity of their tone and cadence, I judged they wished to be a little metaphorical, and so used the term figuratively, to mean the following:-"We have our scruples about complying with your request, lest it might detract from our influence and popularity." They observed, that Mr. Johns, the English Consul, might be the most proper man to grant me the desired favor. I replied, that I knew as little of Mr. Johns as I did of any Jew in Jerusalem, but that I would not insist upon my request being granted. Mr. Whiting then remarked, that he should have no particular objections to do it, but that it could not be well attended to until a day or two hence. This reminded me of a circumstance in England, where duty once led me to call upon a clergyman to do me a little favor, but he said he could not grant it, because I had not come recommended by any one with whom he was acquainted. I replied, that I was very sorry to be so unfortunate on that occasion, as to be recommended by none but my master, who was the Saviour [Savior] of the world. The two are not exactly similar, yet the former reminded me of the latter. I thanked Mr. W. however, for his kindness, and our interview closed. The fact is, God has one system of etiquette, and reciprocity and this sign-seeking generation has another. The former is hospitality and kindness to the stranger; but the latter is--be very cautious and particular that you render him no assistance, neither show him favor unless he come recommended by our party, or by some others who are honorable and orthodox, like ourselves. But no man is justifiable in the eye of humanity, in the eye of the gospel, or in that eye that never sleeps, in rejecting the reasonable petition of a stranger, though he do not come clothed with letters from the chief priests, scribes and elders of the people; and it is what no gentleman will do, unless his frankness and liberality have become blasted by the chilling winds of a sectarian atmosphere.
With what feelings of commingled pity and contempt does every Latter Day Saint, whose mind has thoroughly canvassed the principles of our faith, and in whose heart dwells that "unction from the Holy One," look upon that want of generosity and frankness, which he is often compelled to witness, when he knows that in his own bosom, independent
of a boasting spirit, or any desire of vain glory, are jewels of light, truth, and knowledge, as far superior in lustre [luster] to any thing which they posses [possess], as the purest diamond is to the common pebble of the rivulet!
I concluded, however, that I would try to discharge my duty before God, without subjecting any one to the humble mortification of giving me an introduction. For myself, I feel not very jealous of my popularity where the cause of truth requires me to hazard it, and am not so very particular. If my name be only recorded in heaven, on the list of the sanctified, it will abundantly compensate me for the sacrifice which duty calls me to make of it among men. Let them, therefore, look upon me as they may, a deceiver or a deceived, a wise man or a fool, I feel very thankful to the Lord for what mine eyes have seen, mine ears have heard, and more than all, for what my soul has experienced; and it is my constant prayer to an over-ruling Providence, that his free grace may be amply sufficient to bear me triumphantly through life's conflicting scenes, that my poor heart may swell the notes of praise and thanksgiving for ever and ever to HIM who died to save me and wash me from my sins, in his own most precious blood.*
* * * * * *
You will discover by this letter, and more particularly by the one written from Alexandria, to Elder Pratt in Manchester, England, that, through the goodness of the Lord, I have been enabled to accomplish that which was told me prophetically, several years ago, by Brother Joseph Smith.
Though the blustering snow-storm has thrown the gorgeous folds of his crimson mantle over the mountain tops, which half encircle us on our north and east as we lie here in quarantine, yet their sides towards the base, beautifully terraced and thickly set with vines and olives, though not in their summer dress, present a widely extended scene of rural beauty and loveliness. All the irregularities and deformities of nature (if, indeed, there are any,) are completely lost in the distant view, though we gaze through the ships, powerful magnified; so, when the eye of imagination surveys the saints far in the west, their faults and foibles are lost in the distance, (if, indeed, any they have) and nothing but their virtues appear, which render the society very inviting and extremely desirable. The simple unrestrained language of my heart is-I want to see my brethren, for in their bosoms, I am sure, is a corresponding echo which--
Like the harp when the zephyr is sighing
To the breath of that zephyr, in music replying
Friendship can tremble with feelings as true.
I have just been upon deck to witness the king of day retiring in his robes of state to the western portions of his kingdoms, to proclaim there, in propia persona, the advent of 1842, after opening and lighting up the glory of the new year in the east. As his golden disk was sinking behind the western rim of the deep blue waters of the Adriatic, and throwing back, in rich profusion, his soft and glowing beam upon the clear blue sky, with a radiance and splendor peculiar to none but him, thought I, oh, that thou couldst take a thought or good wish from me and bear it on the pathway of one of thy golden beams to my dear little family, which perhaps at this moment is pouring his noon-day splendor obliquely upon the home where they dwell. But another thought succeeded-I will not be a Parsee. There is a Being whose throne is high, and whose glorious image shines forth in the mirror of all his works to feast the mental eye and heal the wounded heart, "His ear is not heavy that he cannot hear, neither is his arm shortened that he cannot save;" to HIM, therefore, I will send a thought on the wing of my evening devotion, and breathe an asperation [aspiration] that his favor may gladden and cheer the cot where dwell all my earthly hopes and earthly riches: therefore, tarry not for me thou glorious orb of light, but speed thy course onward in the circut [circuit] of the heavens, to dye the sheen of other climes, and to roll in the hour when the dead, small and great, shall stand before God.
Jerusalem at this time contains about twenty thousand inhabitants; about seven thousand are Jews, and the remainder mostly Turks and Arabs. It is enclosed by a strong wall from five to ten feet thick, On those sides which are most accessible, and consequently most exposed
*This part of the letter has been published before, as extracted from the "Millennial Star.
to an attack, the wall is thickest, and well mounted with cannon; it is from twelve to thirty feet in height. The city is situated at the south-eastern extremity of an inclined plane, with the valley of Kedron on the east, and the vallies [valleys] of Hinnom and Gihon on the south and west, all converging to a point in the valley of Jehosaphat [Jehoshaphat], south-east of the city: from the eastern gate of the city to the top of Mount Olivet, as you pass through the valley of Kedron, is just about one English mile. On the top of this mount you have a fair view of the Dead Sea and river Jordan, which are about fifteen miles in the distance. As I stood upon this almost sacred spot and gazed upon the surrounding scenery, and contemplated the history of the past in connection with the prophetic future, I was lost in wonder and admiration, and felt almost ready to ask myself-Is it a reality that I am here gazing upon this scene of wonders? or am I carried away in the fanciful reveries of a night vision? Is that city which I now look down upon really Jerusalem, whose sins and iniquity swelled the Saviour's [Savior's] heart with grief, and drew so many tears from his pitying eye? Is that small enclosure in the valley of Kedron, where the boughs of those lonely olives are waving their green foliage so gracefully in the soft and gentle breeze, really the garden of Gethsemane, where powers infernal poured the flood of hell's dark gloom around the princely head of the immortal Redeemer? Oh, yes! The fact that I entered the garden and plucked a branch from an olive, and now have that branch to look upon, demonstrates that all was real. There, there is the place where the Son of the Virgin bore our sins and carried ours sorrows--there the angels gazed and shuddered at the sight, waiting for the order to fly to his rescue; but no such order was given. The decree had passed in heaven, and could not be revoked, that he must suffer, that he must bleed, and that he must die. What bosom so cold, what feelings so languid, or what heart so unmoved that can withold [withhold] the humble tribute of a tear over this forlorn condition of the Man of sorrows?
From this place I went to the tombs of the prophets in the valley of Jehosaphat [Jehoshaphat], and on my way around the city, I entered the pool of Siloam and freely washed in its soft and healing fountain. I found plenty of water there for baptizing, besides a surplus quantity sent off in a limpid stream as a grateful tribute to the thirsty plants of the gardens in the valley. The pool of Bethsada, which had five porches, yet remains in the city, but in a dilapidated state, there being plenty of water to meet the demands of the city of a better quality, and more convenient-this vast reservoir is consequently neglected. This pool was unquestionably as free and accessible to all the people of Jerusalem as the Thames is to the Cockneys, or the Mississippi to the people of Nauvoo; and from its vast dimensions, it would certainly contain water enough to immerse all Jerusalem in, in a day: so the argument against immersion, on the ground that there was not water enough in Jerusalem to immerse three thousand persons in, in one day, is founded in an over anxiety to establish the traditions of men to the subversion of a gospel ordinance; and it will be borne [born] in mind also, that the day of Pentecost was in the month of May, just at the close of the rainy season, when all the pools and fountains in and about the city were flush with water.
What were anciently called Mount Zion and Mount Calvary, are both within the present walls of the city. We should not call them mountains in America, or hardly hills; but gentle elevations or rises of land. The area of what was called Mount Zion, I should not think contained more than one acre of ground; at least as I stood upon it and contemplaed [contemplated] what the prophets had said of Zion in the last days, and what should be done in her, I could no more bring my mind to believe that the magnet of truth in them which guided their words, pointed to this place, any more than I could believe that a camel can go through the eye of a needle, or a rich man enter into the kingdom of God. But on the land of Joseph, far in the west, where the spread eagle of America floats in the breeze and shadows the land; where those broad rivers and streams roll the waters of the western world to the fathomless abyss of the ocean; where those wide-spreading prairies (fields of the wood) and extensive forests adorn the land with such an agreeable variety, shall Zion rear her stately temples and stretch forth the curtains of her habitation. The record of Mormon chimes in so beautifully with the scriptures to establish
this position, that an honest and faithful examination of the subject is all that is required to expel every doubt from the heart.
The customs and manners of the people of the east are so similar to what they were in the days of our Saviour [Savior], that almost everything which the traveller [traveler] beholds is a standing illustration of some portion of scripture: for example, I saw two women grinding wheat at a little hand-mill, consisting of two small stones with a little rude tackling about it, the whole of which one man might take in his arms and carry almost any where at pleasure. One would turn the top stone until her strength was exhausted, and then the other would take her place, and so alternately keep the little grinder in operation, It appears that our Lord foresaw the perpetuity of this custom, even to the time of his second coming; for he said, "Two women shall be grinding at the mill; one shall be taken and the other left; and for ought I know, these two I saw were the identical ones. I also saw the people take a kind of coarse grass and mix it with some kind of earth or peat that had been wet and reduced to the consistency of common mortar, and then lay it out in flattened cakes to dry for fuel. I then, for the first time in my life, saw the propriety of our Saviour's [Savior's] allusion. "If God so clothe the grass of the field, which to-day is, and to-morrow is cast into the oven, &c." I might swell this letter to a volume upon these subjects, but I forbear for the present. One may read of the customs of the east, but it is not like seeing them. To read of a good dinner may brighten up a man's ideas about eating, especially if he be a little hungry; but to sit down at the luxurious board and eat is far more satisfactory. The two cases are not exactly parallel, yet the latter serves to illustrate the former.
As I walked about the environs of the town, my spirit struggled within me in earnest prayer to the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, that he would not only revolutionize this country, but renovate and make it glorious, My heart would lavish its blessings upon it in the greatest prodigality in view of what is to come hereafter. After returning to the city, I found my feet and legs completely coated with dust; for the whole face of the country was like an ash bed in consequence of the great length of the dry season. I then thought how very convenient it must have been for the ancient disciples to fulfil [fulfill] one injunction of the Saviour [Savior], "shake off the dust of your feet."
Syria at present is in a very unsettled state. The Drewzes and Catholics are fighting almost constantly. They sometimes kill hundreds and hundreds of a day. In some sections it is not unfrequent [infrequent] that the traveller [traveler] meets some dozen or twenty men by the way-side without heads, in a day. In a letter from Bavaria, I stated that hostilities had re-commenced between the Turks and Egyptians; I took the statement from a German paper, but it was a mistake. The hostilities were between the lesser tribes in Syria. The American missionaries at Beyrout [Beirut] and Mount Lebanon have received official notice through Commodore Porter, our minister to Constantinople, from the Grand Sultan, that hereafter they can have no redress by law for any violence, outrage, or cruelty, that may be practiced upon them by the people; and advises them to leave the country. This course is approved of by Commodore Porter. I read the correspondence between him and Mr. Chassan, our consul at Beyrout [Beirut]; but all is going on in the Providence of God. Syria and Palestine must ferment and ferment, work and work, until they work into the hands of Abraham's children to whom they rightly belong; and may the God of their fathers bless the hand that aids their cause.
I must now begin to think of coming to a close, I have nearly three weeks yet to remain in quarantine. The time seems long; yet I endeavor not to let it run to waste.-When our ship shall have obtained her prattique, I shall proceed, if the Lord will, directly to Germany over the Alps, and try to light up a fire there. Will you give me your prayers that God may bless my exertions, and that I may be enabled to conduct myself with dignity and propriety in all things which become a man of God, and which the purity and virtue of the cause I advocate, so justly merits; and further, that in my great weakness celestial strength may appear.
My kind respects to the presidency of the church, and a happy new year to all absent and enquiring [inquiring] friends.
With the most kind and tender feelings towards you, and with a heart that will burst with blessings on your heads when your faces I behold, allow your unworthy brother in Christ to close by the following lines which he offers you as a farewell token until Providence shall permit us again to meet:-
Where the sun leaves his last golden ray,
Far over the sea's swelling tide,
Will friends dear and true for me pray,
That I in the Lord may abide?
Though distance and time do us part,
And scenes new and strange roll between,
Your memory is dear to my heart,
And friendship's bright star gleams the same.
In the west, let its ray pour a light
On the circle of Zion's true sons,
To greet them with joy in the sight
Of HIM who has said we are one.
To share in the spoils of my love,
Her daughters though last, are not least;
For surely 'twas blest from above
Which graced the end of the feast.
HISTORY OF JOSEPH SMITH.
After we had received this revelation he (Oliver Cowdery) stated to me that after he had gone to my father's to board, and after the family communicated to him concerning my having got the plates, that one night after he had retired to bed he called upon the Lord to know if these things were so, and that the Lord manifested to him that they were true, but that he had kept the circumstance entirely secret, and had mentioned it to no being, so that after this revelation having been given he knew that the work was true, because that no being living knew of the thing alluded to in the revelation, but God and himself. During the month of April I continued to translate, and he to write, with little cessation, during which time we received several revelations. A difference of opinion arising between us about the account of John the apostle, mentioned in the New Testament, John, twenty first chapter and twenty second verse, whether he died or whether he continued-we mutually agreed to settle it by the Urim and Thummim, and the following is the word which we received.
A Revelation given to Joseph Smith, jr. and Oliver Cowdery, in Harmony, Pennsylvania, April 1829, when they desired to know whether John, the beloved disciple, tarried on earth.-Translated from parchment, written and hid up by himself.
And the Lord said unto me, John, my beloved, what desirest thou? For if ye shall ask, what you will, it shall be granted unto you. And I said unto him, Lord give unto me power over death, that I may live and bring souls unto thee. And the Lord said unto me, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, because thou desiredst [desirest] this thou shalt tarry until I come in my glory, and shall prophesy before nations, kindreds, tongues and people.
And for this cause the Lord said unto Peter, If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee? For he desiredst [desirest] of me that he might bring souls unto me; but thou desiredst [desirest] that thou might speedily come unto me in my kingdom. I say unto thee, Peter, this was a good desire, but my beloved has desired that he might do more, or a greater work, yet among men than what he has before done; yea, he has undertaken a greater work, therefore, I will make him as flaming fire and a ministering angel; he shall minister for those who shall be heirs of salvation, who dwell on the earth; and I will make thee to minister for him and for thy brother James: and unto you three I will give this power and the keys of this ministry until I come.
Verily I say unto you, ye shall both have according to your desires, for ye both joy in that which ye have desired.
Whilst continuing the work of translation during the month of April; Oliver Cowdery became exceedingly anxious to have the power to translate bestowed upon him, and in relation to this desire, the following revelations were obtained.
Revelation given April, 1829.
Oliver Cowdery, verily verily I say unto you, that assuredly as the Lord liveth, who is your God and your Redeemer, even so sure shall you receive a knowledge of whatsoever things you shall ask in faith, with an honest heart, believing that you shall receive a knowledge concerning the engravings of old records, which are ancient, which contain those parts of my scripture of which have been spoken, by the manifestation of my Spirit; yea, behold I will tell you in your mind and in your heart by the Holy Ghost, which shall come upon you and which shall dwell in your heart.
Now, behold this is the Spirit of Revelation behold this is the Spirit by which Moses brought the children of Israel through the Red sea on dry ground; therefore this is thy gift; apply unto it, and blessed art thou, for it shall deliver you out of the hands of your enemies, when, if it were not so they would slay you and bring your soul to destruction.
O remember these words, and keep my commandments. Remember this is
your gift. Now this is not all thy gift; for you have another gift, which is the gift of Aaron: behold it has told you many things: behold there is no other power save the power of God that can cause this gift of Aaron to be with you; therefore, doubt not, for it is the gift of God, and you shall hold it in your hands, and do marvelous works; and no power shall be able to take it away out of your hands; for it is the work of God. And therefore, whatsoever you shall ask me to tell you by that means, that will I grant unto you and you shall have knowledge concerning it: remember that without faith you can do nothing.-Therefore, ask in faith. Trifle not with these things: do not ask for that which you ought not: ask that you may know the mysteries of God, and that you may translate and receive knowledge from all those ancient records which have been hid up, that are sacred, and according to your faith shall it be done unto you. Behold, it is I that have spoken it: and I am the same who spake unto you from the beginning. Amen.
Revelation given to Oliver Cowdery
Behold I say unto you, my son, that because you did not translate according to that which you desired of me, and did commence again to write for my servant Joseph Smith. jr. even so I would that you should continue until you have finished this record, which I have intrusted unto him: and then behold, other records have I that I will give unto you power that you may assist to translate.
Be patient my son, for it is wisdom in me, and it is not expedient that you should translate at the present time. Behold the work which you are called to do, is to write for my servant Joseph; and behold it is because that you did not continue as you commenced, when you began to translate, that I have taken away this privilege from you. Do not murmur my son, for it is wisdom in me that I have dealt with you after this manner.
Behold you have not understood, you have supposed that I would give it unto you, when you took no thought, save it was to ask me; but behold I say unto you, that you must study it out in your mind; then you must ask me if it be right, and if it is right, I will cause that your bosom shall burn within you: therefore, you shall feel that it is right; but if it be not right, you shall have no such feelings, but you shall have a stupor of thought, that shall cause you to forget the thing which is wrong: therefore, you cannot write that which is sacred, save it be given you from me.
Now if you had known this, you could have translated; nevertheless, it is not expedient that you should translate now. Behold it was expedient when you commenced, but you feared and the time is not expedient now: for, do you not behold that I have given unto my servant Joseph sufficient strength, whereby it is made up? and neither of you have I condemned.
Do this thing which I have commanded you, and you shall prosper. Be faithful, and yield to no temptation.-Stand fast in the work wherewith I have called you, and a hair of your head shall not be lost, and you shall be lifted up at the last day. Amen.
DESTRUCTION OF ONE FIFTH OF THE CITY OF HAMBURGH BY FIRE.
The city of Hamburgh, the great commercial emporium of Germany, is a heap of ruins. Her merchants were rejoicing at the prospect held out to them by the promised improvements in our commercial tariff; now they are mourning over their richly stored warehouses in ashes, their houses devoured by the flames, and their prospects of increased prosperity scattered to the four winds of heaven.
The fire, which broke out on Wednesday night, the 14th inst. and which there is every reason to believe, was the work of an incendiary, extended to fifty two streets, most of which were reduced to ashes. On a rough calculation, the loss of property was from three to four millions sterling, but it is believed that the total loss will be double that amount. No person can tell how many lives were lost but a great number of persons must have perished. The canals through the city were dry, so that no water could be found. The fire raged from Wednesday night till Saturday morning.
On the latter day, at nine o'clock, the Danish, Hanovarian, and Prussian troops entered the town, and being well supplied with gunpowder, commenced blowing up the houses to arrest the progress
of the flames. This was completely effected by Sunday morning. The Senate ordered every person to leave town and nothing could exceed the heart-rending spectacle of thousands of poor people frantic with their losses, and without the means of procuring food or shelter.
The destruction of Hamburgh is one of those calamities which will be felt in every part of the commercial world.-Great as may be the credit of the Senate and people of Hamburgh with foreign states, a century will elapse before the city can be replaced in all the prosperity destroyed by this conflagration. In the midst of the confusion an incident occurred characteristic of the government and the people. A public notice was every where put up, stating that the vault under the bank, containing the gold and silver bars, were fire proof, and that the bank books were all removed in perfect safety,
The Hamburgh Noue Zeitung of the 10th inst. thus sums up the results of the sad catastrophe:-
"Sixty streets, containing from 1500 to 2000 houses, lie smouldering [smoldering] on the ground, and form a fearful but picturesque ruin. Two splended [splendid] churches, with steeples exceeding 400 feet in height, another church with its tower, the Rath Haus, where the Senate hold their sittings, the old Exchange, the repository of archives, the building of the Patriotic Society , are all destroyed. Reichspost Amt, nearly all the booksellers, the offices of two newspapers, (the Borsenballe, and the Correspondent,) nearly all the great hotels and inns, (the Old London, the Belvidere, Hotel de Ruisse, St. Petersburgh, Street's Hotel, the Crown Prince, the Wild Man, the Bramer Anthaus, the Black Elephant,) the principle magazins des modes and repositories of fashion, and nearly all the chief apothecaries, are destroyed. The following are safe:--The cellar where the bullion is deposited at the bank, the Catharinenstrase der Wandralune, du Reichenstrase, &c."
RELIGION.-Is a flower whose bud is peace, whose blossom is joy unspeakable, and whose fruit is everlasting glory.
If you would be truly happy, strive to make others so and learn to cultivate good feelings towards all mankind.
TIMES AND SEASONS.
CITY OF NAUVOO.
FRIDAY, JULY 15, 1842.
THE GOVERNMENT OF GOD.
The government of the Almighty, has always been very dissimilar to the government of men; whether we refer to his religious government, or to the government of nations. The government of God has always tended to promote peace, unity, harmony, strength and happiness; while that of man has been productive of confusion, disorder, weakness and misery. The greatest acts of the mighty men have been to depopulate nations, and to overthrow kingdoms; and whilst they have exalted themselves and become glorious, it has been at the expense of the lives of the innocent-the blood of the oppressed-the moans of the widow, and the tears of the orphan. Egypt, Babylon, Greece, Persia, Carthage, Rome-each were raised to dignity amid the clash of arms, and the din of war; and whilst their triumphant leaders led forth their victorious armies to glory and victory, their ears were saluted with the groans of the dying, and the misery and distress of the human family;--before them the earth was a paradise, and behind them a desolate wilderness; their kingdoms were founded in carnage and bloodshed, and sustained by oppression, tyranny, and despotism. The designs of God, on the other hand, have been to promote the universal good, of the universal world;-to establish peace and good will among men;-to promote the principles of eternal truth;-to bring about a state of things that shall unite man to his fellow man-cause the world to "beat their swords into plow-shares, and their spears into pruning-hooks"-make the nations of the earth dwell in peace; and to bring about the millenial [millennial] glory-when "the earth shall yield its increase, resume its paradisean glory, and become as the garden of the Lord."
The great and wise of ancient days have failed in all their attempts to promote eternal power, peace, and happiness. Their nations have crumbled to pieces; their thrones have been cast down in their turn; and their cities, and their mightiest works of art, have been annihilated; or their dilapidated towers, or time worn monuments have left us but feeble traits of their former magnificence, and ancient grandeur. They proclaim as with a voice of thunder, those imperishable truths-that man's
strength is weakness, his wisdom is folly, his glory is his shame.
Monarchical, aristocratic, and republican forms of government, of their various kinds and grades, have in their turn been raised to dignity and prostrated in the dust. The plans of the greatest politicians, the wisest senators, and most profound statesmen have been exploded; and the proceedings of the greatest chieftains, the bravest generals, and the wisest kings have fallen to the ground. Nation has succeeded nation, and we have inherited nothing but their folly. History records their puerile plans, their short lived glory, their feeble intellect, and their ignoble deeds.
Have we increased in knowledge or intelligence? where is there a man that can step forth and alter the destiny of nations, and promote the happiness of the world? Or where is there a kingdom or nation, that can promote the universal happiness of its own subjects, or even their general well being? Our nation, which possesses greater resources than any other, is rent from center to circumference, with party strife, political intrigue, and sectional interest; our counsellors [counselors] are panic struck, our legislators are astonished, and our senators are confounded; our merchants are paralized [paralyzed], our tradesmen are disheartened, our mechanics out of employ, our farmers distressed, and our poor crying for bread. Our banks are broken, our credit ruined, and our states overwhelmed in debt;-yet we are, and have been in peace.-What is the matter? Are we alone in this thing? Verily, no. With all our evils we are better situated than any other nation. Let Egypt, Turkey, Spain, France, Italy, Portugal, Germany, England, China, or any other nation speak, and tell the tale of their trouble-their perplexity, and distress, and we should find that their cup was full, and that they were preparing to drink the dregs of sorrow. England, that boasts of her literature, her science, commerce, &c., has her hands reeking with the blood of the innocent, abroad; and she is saluted with the cries of the oppressed, at home.-Chartism, O'Connelism, and Radicalism are gnawing her vitals at home; and Ireland, Scotland, Canada, and the East, are threatening her destruction abroad. France is rent to the core-intrigue, treachery, and treason lurk in the dark; and murder, and assassination stalk forth at noon-day. Turkey, once the glory of European nations, has been shorn of her strength-has dwindled into her dotage, and has been obliged to ask her allies to propose to her tributary terms of peace: and Russia, and Egypt are each of [t]hem opening their jaws to devour her. Spain has been the theatre [theater] of bloodshed, of misery and woe, for years past. Syria is now convulsed with war and bloodshed. The great and powerful empire of China, which has for centuries resisted the attacks of barbarians, has become tributary to a foreign foe; her batteries thrown down; many of her cities destroyed, and her villages deserted. We might mention the Eastern rajahs; the miseries and oppressions of the Irish; the convulsed state of Central America; the situation of Texas and Mexico; the state of Greece, Switzerland, and Poland-nay, the world itself presents one great theatre [theater] of misery, woe, and "distress of nations with perplexity." All, all speak with a voice of thunder, that man is not able to govern himself-to legislate for himself-to protect himself-to promote his own good, nor the good of the world.
It has been the design of Jehovah, from the commencement of the world, and is his purpose now, to regulate the affairs of the world in his own time; to stand as head of the universe, and take the reigns of government into his own hand. When that is done judgment will be administered in righteousness; anarchy and confusion will be destroyed, and "nations will learn war no more." It is for want of this great governing principle that all this confusion has existed; "for it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps;" this we have fully shewn [shown].
If there was any thing great or good in the world it came from God. The construction of the first vessel was given to Noah, by revelation. The design of the ark was given by God, "a pattern of heavenly things." The learning of the Egyptians, and their knowledge of astronomy was no doubt taught them by Abraham and Joseph, as their records testify, who received it from the Lord. The art of working in brass, silver, gold, and precious stones, was taught by revelation, in the wilderness. The architectural designs of the Temple at Jerusalem, together with its ornament and beauty was given of God. Wisdom to govern the house of Israel was given to Solomon, and to the judges of Israel; and if he had always been their king, and they subject to his mandate, and obedient of his laws, they would still have been a great and mighty people; the rulers of the universe-and the wonder of the world. If Nebuchadnezzar, or Darius, or Cyrus, or any other king possessed knowledge or power it was from the same source, as the scriptures abundantly testify. If then, God puts up one, and sets down another, at his pleasure-and made instruments of kings, unknown to themselves, to fulfill his prophesies, how much more was he able, if man would have been subject to his mandate, to regulate
the affairs of this world, and promote peace and happiness among the human family.
The Lord has at various times commenced this kind of government, and tendered his services vo [to] the human family. He selected Enoch, whom he directed, and gave his law unto, and to the people who were with him; and when the world in general would not obey the commands of God, he translated Enoch and his church, and the priesthood or government of heaven, was taken away.
Abraham was guided in all his family affairs by the Lord; was told where to go, and when to stop; was conversed with by angels, and by the Lord; and prospered exceedingly in all that he put his hand unto; it was because he and his family obeyed the counsel of the Lord.-When Egypt was under the superintendence of Joseph, it prospered, because he was taught of God; when they oppressed the Israelites destruction came upon them. When the children of Israel were chosen with Moses at their head, they were to be a peculiar people, among whom God should place his name: their motto was "The Lord is our lawgiver; the Lord is our judge; the Lord is our king, and he shall reign over us." While in this state they might truly say, "happy is that people whose God is the Lord." Their government was a theocracy; they had God to make their laws, and men chosen by him to administer them; he was their God, and they were his people. Moses received the word of the Lord from God himself; he was the mouth of God to Aaron, and Aaron taught the people in both civil and ecclesiastical affairs; they were both one; there was no distinction; so will it be when the purposes of God shall be accomplished; when "the Lord shall be king over the whole earth" and "Jerusalem his throne." "The law shall go forth from Zion, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem."
This is the only thing that can bring about the "restitution of all things, spoken of by all the holy prophets since the world was"- "the dispensation of the fulness [fullness] of times, when GOD shall gather together all things in one." Other attempts to promote universal peace and happiness in the human family have proven abortive; every effort has failed; every plan and design has fallen to the ground; it needs the wisdom of God, the intelligence of God, and the power of God to accomplish this. The world has had a fair trial for six thousand years; the Lord will try the seventh thousand himself; "he whose right it is will possess the kingdom, and reign until he has put all things under his feet;" iniquity will hide its hoary head, Satan will be bound, and the works of darkness destroyed; righteousness will be put to the line, and judgment to the plummet, and "he that fears the Lord will alone be exalted in that day." To bring about this state of things there must of necessity be great confusion among the nations of the earth; "distress of nations with perplexity."-Am I asked what is the cause of the present distress? I would answer: "Shall there be evil in a city and the Lord hath not done it." The earth is groaning under corruption, oppression, tyranny, and bloodshed; and God is coming out of his hiding place, as he said that he would do, to vex the nations of the earth. Daniel, in his vision, saw convulsion upon convulsion; he "saw till thrones were cast down, and the ancient of days did sit; and one was brought before him like unto the Son of man; and all nations, kindreds, tongues, and people, did serve and obey him." It is for us to be righteous that we may be wise and understand, for "none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand, and they that turn many to righteousness, as the stars for ever and ever." As a church, and a people it behoves [behooves] us to be wise, and to seek to know the will of God, and then be willing to do it; for "blessed is he that heareth the word of the Lord and keepeth it," says the scriptures. "Watch and pray always," says our Savior, "that ye may be accounted worthy to escape the things that are coming on the earth, and to stand before the Son of man." If Enoch, Abraham, Moses, the children of Israel, and all God's people were saved by keeping the commandments of God, we, if saved at all, shall be saved upon the same principle. As God governed Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, as families, and the children of Israel as a nation, so we, as a church, must be under his guidance if we are prospered, proserved [preserved], and sustained. Our only confidence can be in God; our only wisdom obtained from him; and he alone must be our protector and safeguard, spiritually and temporally, or we fall.
We have been chastened by the hand of God heretofore for not obeying his commands, although we never violated any human law, or transgressed any human precept: yet we have treated lightly his commands, and departed from his ordinances, and the Lord has chastened us sore, and we have felt his arm, and kissed the rod: let us we [be?] wise in time to come, and ever remember that "to obey is better than sacrifice; and to hearken than the fat of rams." The Lord has told us to build the temple, and the Nauvoo House, and that command is as binding upon us as any other; and that man who engages not in these things is as much a transgressor as though he broke any other command-he is not
a doer of God's will, nor a fulfiller of his laws.
In regard to the building up of Zion it has to be done by the counsel of Jehovah; by the revelations of heaven, and we should feel to say "if the Lord go not with us, carry us not up hence." We would say to the saints that come here, we have laid the foundation for the gathering of God's people to this place, and expect that when the saints do come they will be under the counsel of those that God has appointed. The Twelve are set apart to counsel the saints pertaining to this matter: and we expect that those who come here will send before them their wise men according to revelation; or if not practicable, be subject to the counsel that God has given or they cannot receive an inheritance among the saints, or be considered as God's people; and they will be dealt with as transgressors of the laws of God; we are trying here to gird up our loins, and purge from our midst the workers of iniquity; and we hope that when our brethren arrive from abroad, they will assist us to roll forth this good work, and to accomplish this great design; that "Zion may be built up in righteousness; and all nations flock to her standard;" that as God's people, under his direction, and obedient to his law, we may grow up in righteousness, and truth; that when his purposes shall be accomplished, we may receive an inheritance among those that are sanctified.-ED.
Some have supposed that all the great works of the west, of which we have been treating, belong to our present race of Indians; but from continued wars with each other, have driven themselves from agricultural pursuits, and thinned away their numbers, to that degree, that the wild animals and fishes of the rivers, and wild fruit of the forests, were found sufficient to give them abundant support: on which account, they were reduced to savagism.
But this is answered by the Antiquarian Society, as follows: "Have our present race of Indians ever buried their dead in mounds by thousands? Were they acquainted with the uses of silver or copper? These metals curiously wrought have been found. Did the ancients of our Indians burn the bodies of distinguished chiefs, on funeral piles, and then raise a lofty tumulus over the urn containing their ashes? Did the Indians erect any thing like the "walled towns," on Paint Creek? Did they ever dig such wells as are found at Marietta, Portsmouth, and above all, such as those in Paint Creek? Did they manufacture vessels from calcareous breccia equal to any now made in Italy?
To this we respond, they never have: no, not even their traditions afford a glimpse of the existence of such things, as forts, tumuli, roads, wells, mounds, walls enclosing between one and two hundred, and even five hundred acres of land; some of them of stone, and others of earth, twenty feet in thickness, and exceeding high, are works requiring too much labor for Indians ever to have performed.
An idol found in a tumulus near Nashville, Tennessee, and now in the Museum of Mr. Clifford, of Lexington, is made of clay, peculiar for its fineness. With this clay was mixed a small portion of gypsum or plaster of Paris. This Idol was made to represent a man, in a state of nudity or nakedness, whose arms had been cut off close to the body, and whose nose and chin have been mutilated, with a fillet and cake upon its head.
Some years since a clay vessel was discovered, about twenty feet below the surface, in alluvial earth, in digging a well near Nashville, Tennessee, and was found standing on a rock, from whence a spring of water issued. This vessel was taken to Peale's Museum, at Philadelphia. It contains about one gallon; was circular in its shape, with a flat bottom, from which it rises in a somewhat globose form, terminating at the summit with the figure of a female head; the place where the water was introduced, or poured out, was on the one side of it, nearly at the top of the globose part.
Another idol was, a few years since, dug up in Natchez, on the Mississippi, on a piece of ground where, according to tradition, long before Europeans visited this country, stood an Indian temple.-This idol is of stone, and is nineteen inches in height, nine inches in width, and seven inches thich [thick] at the extremities.-On its breast, as represented on the plate of the idol, were five marks, which were evidently characters of some kind, resembling as supposed, the Persian; probably expressing, in the language of its authors, the name and suppssed [supposed] attributes of the senseless god of stone.
One of the arts known to the builders of Babel, was that of brick making; this art was also known to the people who built the works in the west. The knowledge
of copper was known to the people of the plains of Shinar, for Noah must have communicated it, as he lived an hundred and fifty years among them after the flood; also, copper was known to the antediluvians. Copper was also known to the authors of the western monuments. Iron was known to the antediluvians; it was also known to the ancients of the west; however, it is evident that very little iron was among them, as very few instances of its discovery in their works have occurred; and for this very reason we draw a conclusion that they came to this country very soon after the dispersion, and brought with them such few articles of iron as have been found in their works in an oxydized [oxidized] state.
Copper ore is very abundant in many places of the west; and therefore, as they had a knowledge of it, when they first came here they knew how to work it, and form it into tools and ornaments. This is the reason why so many articles of this metal are found in their works; and even if they had a knowledge of iron ore, and knew how to work it, all articles made of it must have become oxydized [oxidized] as appears from what few specimens have been found, while those of copper are more imperishable. Gold ornaments are said to have been found in several tumuli. Silver very well plated on copper, has been found in several mounds, besides those at Circleville and Marietta. An ornament of copper was found in a stone mound near Chilicothe; it was a bracelet for the ancle [ankle] or wrist.
The ancients of Asia, immediately after the dispersion, were acquainted with ornaments made of the various metals; for in the family of Terah, who was the father of Abraham and Nahor, we find these ornaments in use for the beautifying of females. See the servant of Abraham, at the well of Bethuel [Bethel] in the country of "Ur of the Chaldeans," or Mesopotamia, which is not very far from the place where Babel stood-putting a jewell [jewel] of gold upon the face or forehead of Rebecca, weighing half a shekel, and two bracelets for her wrists, or arms. Bracelets for the same use have been found in the west; all of which circumstances go to establish the acquaintance of those who made those ornaments of silver and copper found in the mounds of the west, equal with those of Ur in Chaldea. The families of Peleg, Reu, Serug, and Nahor, who were the immediate progenitors of Abraham, lived at an era but little after the flood; and yet we find them in the possession of ornaments of this kind; from which we conclude a knowledge both of the metals, and how to make ornaments, as above described, was brought by Noah and his family from beyond the flood.
On the shores of the Mississippi, some miles below Lake Pepin, on a fine plain, exists an artificial elevation of about four feet high, extending a full mile, in somewhat of a circular form. It is sufficiently capacious to have covered 5000 men. Every angle of the breast work is yet traceable, though much defaced by time. Here, it is likely, conflicting realms as great as those of the ancient Greeks and Persians, decided the fate of ambitious Monarchs, of the Chinese, Mongol descent.
Weapons of brass have been found in many parts of America, as in the Canadas, Florida, &c., with curiously sculptured stones, all of which go to prove that this country was once peopled with civilized, industrious nations,-now traversed the greater part by savage hunters.-Priests American Antiquities.
The Book of Mormon speaks of ores, swords, cities, armies, &c., and we extract the following:--
And it came to pass that we did find upon the land of promise, as we journeyed in the wilderness, that there were beasts in the forests of every kind, both the cow and the ox, and the ass, and the horse, and the goat, and the wild goat, and all manner of wild animals, which were for the use of men. And we did find all manner of ore, both of gold, and of silver, and of copper.
And it came to pass that the Lord commanded me, wherefore I did make plates of ore, that I might engraven npon [upon] them the record of my people. * * *
And it came to pass that we began to prosper exceedingly, and to multiply in the land. And I, Nephi, did take the sword of Laban, and after the manner of it did make many swords, lest by any means the people who were now called Lamanites, should come upon us and destroy us: for I knew their hatred towards me and my children, and those who were called my people. And I did teach my people to build buildings; and to work in all manner of wood, and of iron, and of copper, and of brass, and of steel, and of
gold, and of silver, and of precious ores, which were in abundance. And I, Nephi, did build a temple; and I did construct it after the manner of the temple of Solomon, save it were not built of so many precious things: for they were not to be found upon the land; wherefore it could not be built like unto Solomon's temple. But the manner of the construction was like unto the temple of Solomon; and the workmanship thereof was exceeding fine.
In regard to there being great wars, the following will shew [show]:-
And it came to pass when Coriantumr had recovered of his wounds, he began to remember the words which Ether had spoken unto him...he saw that there had been slain by the sword already nearly two millions of his people, and he began to sorrow in his heart; yea, there had been slain two millions of mighty men, and also their wives and their children. He began to repent of the evil which he had done; he began to remember the words which had been spoken by the mouth of all the prophets, and he saw them that they were fulfilled, thus far, every whit; and his soul mourned, and refused to be comforted. . . . . .
And it came to pass that they did gather together all the people, upon all the face of the land, who had not been slain, save it was Ether. And it came to sass [pass] that Ether did behold all the doings of the people; and he beheld that the people who were for Coriantumr, were gathered together for the army of Coriantumr; and the people who were for Shiz, were gathered together to the army of Shiz; wherefore they were for the space of four years gathering together the people, that they might get all who were upon the face of the land, and that they might receive all the strength which it was profitable that they could receive. And it came to pass that when they were all gathering together, every one to the army which he would with their wives and their children; both men, women, and children being armed with weapons of war, having shields and breast plates, and head plates, and being clothed after the manner of war, they did march forth one against another, to battle; and they fought all that day, and conquered not. And it came to pass that when it was night they were weary, and retired to their camps; and after they had retired to their camps, they took up a howling and a lamentation for the loss of the slain of their people; and so great were their cries, their howlings and lamentations, that it did rend the air exceedingly.
If men, in their researches into the history of this country, in noticing the mounds, fortifications, statues, architecture, implements of war, of husbandry, and ornaments of silver, brass, &c.-were to examine the Book of Mormon, their conjectures would be removed, and their opinions altered; uncertainty and doubt would be changed into certainty and facts; and they would find that those things that they are anxiously prying into were matters of history, unfolded in that book. They would find their conjectures were more than realized-that a great and a mighty people had inhabited this continent-that the arts sciences and religion, had prevailed to a very great extent, and that there was as great and mighty cities on this continent as on the continent of Asia. Babylon, Ninevah, nor any of the ruins of the Levant could boast of more perfect sculpture, better architectural designs, and more imperishable ruins, than what are found on this continent. Stephens and Catherwood's researches in Central America abundantly testify of this thing. The stupendous ruins, the elegant sculpture, and the magnificence of the ruins of Guatamala [Guatemala], and other cities, corroborate this statement, and show that a great and mighty people-men of great minds, clear intellect, bright genius, and comprehensive designs inhabited this continent. Their ruins speak of their greatness; the Book of Mormen [Mormon} unfolds their history.-ED.
UTICA, N. Y., JUNE 14, 1842.
MR. EDITOR-DEAR SIR-We forward you in this letter an extract of the minutes of a Conference held in this place on the 11th, 12th, and 13th days of June, and if it be consistent with your other business, should be pleased to see it published in the Times and Seasons.
Minutes of a Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, held at Utica, N. Y. June 11, 1842.
The Conference was organized at half after ten o'clock A. M., by electing Elder James Blakeslee, President, and James M. Monroe, Clerk.
After singing, and prayer by Elder L. R. Foster, the President briefly addressed the Conference, stating the object of convening, together -and
then called for a representation of the different branches.
The Utica branch, represented by J. M. Monroe, consists of 61 members; 1 elder, 5 priests, 2 teachers, and 2 deacons.
The Hamilton branch, represented by A. M. Wilse, consists of 40 members; 4 elders, and 1 teacher.
The Edmeston branch, represented by Elder Daniel Shearer, consists of 13 members; 1 priest, 1 teacher. Also Crown Point branch, represented by the same Elder, consists of 11 members and 2 elders.
The Providence branch, represented by Elder Moses Martin, consists of 18 members; 1 elder, 1 teacher. Also, the Windham branch, represented by the same Elder, consists of six members.
The Boonville branch, represented by Elder Myron Higley, consisth [consists] of 27 members; 4 elders, 1 priest and one teacher.
Almost all of the above branches are but the remains of what they formerly were; very many having emigrated to the west. On motion, adjourned till 3 o'clock.
Met pursuant to adjournment. After singing, and prayer by the President, Elders Foster and Thompson addressed the Conference, stating that the work of the Lord was rolling onward in their section of country with considerable rapidity; after which the Leo branch was represented by Elder J. R. Blanchard consisting, of 17 members; 1 elder, 1 priest and 1 teacher.
Much other business was done in the course of the day, and the Conference received many apprepriate [appropriate] addresses from several Elders present.
On motion, it was Resolved, That Elder Moses Martin be recommended by this Conference to all those who desire to gather west this fall, as a fit person to be their leader, and that they meet at Batavia on the 15th of August next.
The Conference met at half past ten o'clock Sunday morning, pursuant to adjournment, and after prayer by Elder Moses Martin, the Congregation was addressed by Eld Charles Thompson from Isaiah 21:5. At 3 o'clock, P. M., after prayer by the President, Elder Thompson concluded his subject. The sacrament was then administered to the saints, and some time spent very profitably in giving in their testimony, at the close of the meeting one gentleman offered himself for baptism.
At 8 o'clock, P. M., after prayer by Elder Foster, the congregation was advised by Elder Moses Martin from Rev. 14:6. The Conference then adjourned till nine o'clock en [on] Monday morning.
The Conference assembled at the appointed time and proceeded to finish their business.
Bros. James M. Monroe and William Wilson were recommended for ordination. Bro. Mouroe [Monroe] was accordingly ordained to the Elders office, and the case of Bro. Wilson was adjourned until the next Conference.
It was Resolved, That Elders Moses Martin and Daniel Shearer be recommended by this conference as proper persons to receive donations for the building up of the Temple of the Lord at Nauvoo
Voted, also, that some person from the Utica branch be appointed as a General Agent to receive all monies [moneys] and goods from the surrounding branches for the building of the Temple.-Bro U. J. Pierce was accordingly appointed.
The following resolutions were then unanimously passed:
Resolved, That we duly appreciate the labors of the Trustee in Trust, and also of the Twelve, his fellow-laborers and faithful assistants, in their untiring exertions to build the temple at Nauvoo; thereby to secure unto the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints those blessings on which they are dependent for their salvation.
Resolved, That we will do all we can, consistent with our circumstances to assist them in finishing this work.
Voted, that Bro. J. M. Monroe take all consecrations for the temple, which may be made previous to his departure.
Voted, that all who can, begin now to make their consecrations which was accordingly done; and from the casting in of their mites $9.50 was raised; which together with their names will be sent to Nauvoo soon by Bro. Monroe.
The Conference was then adjourned until the last Saturday and Sunday in January, 1843.
During the Conference, the greatest peace and harmony prevailed, and the spirit manifested by all present was very gratifying. Every one seemed to have the spirit of Christ-and when the subject of the Temple was brooked they all seemed to manifest a willingness to do all they could in assisting in this all-important work; but owing to their poverty they could not do a great deal at the present time.
JAMES M. MONROE, Clerk.
A notice appeared in the paper some few weeks ago advertizing [advertising] Elder A. Lits to return to Nauvoo. The notice was inserted by some officious person without authority; we know of no person by that name, but suppose that Elder William A. Lits is the person intended; if so, he is in perfect good standing in the church, and there are no charges preferred against him.
From the New York Herald. A HYMN. BY JAMES ARLINGTON BENNETT, of Arlington House N. Y.
WRITTEN FOR THE FOURTH OF JULY.
Tune - " HAIL COLUMBIA."
Hail ye Mormons-chosen band? Sound, O! sound the trump of fame,
Hail ye Saints of our lov'd land! Let Jesus with the Mormon name,
Who suffered much in freedom's cause. Ring through the world with loud applause-
Who with your blood have seal'd your laws; Our legion shall defend our cause
And now fierce persecution's gone, "Let every chme [chime?] to freedom dear,
Enjoy the peace your faith hath won. Now listen with attentive ear,"
Let your religion be your boast, The Truth through all the world proclaim
Ever mindful what it cost, Ye elders, in your Savior's name;
Ever grateful for the prize, While female voices sing the praise
Let its Altar reach the skies. Of Jesus in these latter days.
Be ye faithful, &c.
Chorus-Be ye faithful, just and true,
Brothers, in the great Nauvoo; All hail, ye chiefs who hold command!
Firm, united without fear, Hail, ye Patriarch of our band!
Worship in your temple here. Ye Elders-faithful Elders, hail!
Ye Elders-faithful Elders, hail!
Immortal Masters, rise once more, Ye seek for Empire over mind,
"Defend your faith, defend your shore;" Ye seek for blessings on mankind.
Let Joseph, with the Prophet's wand, A voice from heaven, ye nations hear,
And all the saints who hold command, The end of time is drawing near!
Expel the foes who dare invade Delay not, stop not on the way,
The sanctuary of our dead. But join our standard while you may.
"While offering peace sincere and just, CHORUS-Be ye faithfal [faithful], brave and true,
In heaven we place our only trust,
That truth and justice must prevail"
And all the schemes of bigots fail.
Be ye faithful, &c.
May 28th, 1842.
DR. WEST AND THE MORMONS.-A discussion on the subject of Mormonism was commenced at the Marlboro' Chapel, on Monday evening between Dr. West and Mr. G. J. Adams, a Mormon Elder. The andience [audience] was numerous; and, for Christian people, as orderly as could be expected-that is, rather boisterous. However the affair went of [off] pretty well, and was, on the whole, quite interesting. The valient [valiant] Dr. did his best, but he got most essentially mauled and "used up." The Mormon, with the whole Bible at his tongue's end, bore down upon him with a torrent of Scripture that swept away his objections like chaff before the hurricane, and the doughty Dr. was fairly at a loss how to get hold of him. This practice of quoting Scripture is a knock down argument with Christians; and as it can be made to prove Mormonism just as well as any thing else, the poor fellows had to swallow it-though we perceived that many of them made most awful faces. Mr. Adams is a perfect tearer on the Bible quotations; and the way he brought them to bear in confirmation of Mormonism, must have sorely puzzled many of the faithful. To the infidel, however, it afforded another evidence, if any were wanting, that the Bible, in regard to doctrines, as it is made to prove every thing, proves in fact nothing-or rather, nothing that is consistent.-Boston Investigator.
This may certify that Br. Benjamin Winchester is restored to his former fellowship and standing in the Church.
He was suspended, according to previous notice, for neglect of council; but learning that he is disposed to abide by the laws of the church, we give him the hand of fellowship.
We would say to Elder Winchester that it would be well for him to locate himself in another city immediately; and then it will be well with him, if he will be faithful and true to the great cause.
JOSEPH SMITH, }
HYRUM SMITH, } Presidents.
WM. LAW, }
BRIGHAM YOUNG, }
H. C. KIMBALL, }
ORSON PRATT, }
WM. SMITH, } Quorum of the
W. RICHARDS, } Twelve.
W. WOODRUFF, }
GEO. A. SMITH, }
JOHN TAYLOR, }
The Times and Seasons, Is edited, printed and published about the first and fifteenth of every month, on the corner of Water and Bain Streets, Nauvoo, Hancock County, Illinois, by JOSEPH SMITH
TERMS.-TWO DOLLARS per annum, payable in all cases in advance. Any person procuring five new subscribers, and forwarding us Ten Dollars current money, shall receive one volume gratis. All letters must be addressed to Joseph Smith, publisher, POST PAID, or they will not receive attention.
Previous chapter Table of Contents Next chapter