Previous chapter Table of Contents Next chapter
Vol., V. No. 5] CITY OF NAUVOO, ILL. MARCH 1, 1844 [Whole No. 89
HISTORY OF Joseph Smith.
The first Sabbath after our arrival in Jackson county, brother W. W. Phelps preached to a western audience, over the boundary of the United States, wherein were specimens of 'all the families of the earth, for there were several of the indians, quite a respectable number of negroes, and the balance was made of citizens of the surrounding counties, and fully represented themselves as pioneers of the west. At this meeting two were baptized who had previously believed in the fulness [fullness] of the gospel. During this week the Colesville branch referred to in the latter part of the last revelation, and Sidney Rigdon and wife, and elders Morley and Booth arrived: and I also received the following
Revelation given in Zion, August, 1831.
Hearken O ye elders of my church, and give ear to my word, and learn of me what I will concerning you, and also concerning this land unto which I have sent you: for verily I say unto you, blessed is he that keepeth my commandments, whether in life or in death; and he that is faithful in tribulation the reward of the same is greater in the kingdom of heaven.
Ye cannot behold with your natural eyes, for the present time, the design of your God concerning those things which shall come hereafter, and the glory which shall follow after much tribulation cometh blessings. For after much tribulation cometh the blessings. Wherefore, the day cometh that ye shall be crowned with much glory, the hour is not yet but is nigh at hand.
Remember this which I tell you before, that you may lay it to heart, and receive that which shall follow. Behold, verily I say unto you, for this cause I have sent you that you might be obedient, and that your hearts might be prepared to bear testimony of the things which are to come; and also that you might be honored of laying the foundation, and of bearing record of the land upon which the Zion of God shall stand; and also that a feast of fat things might be prepared for the poor; yea a feast of fat things, of wine on the lees well refined, that the earth may know that the mouths of the prophets shall not fail; yea a supper of the house of the Lord, well prepared unto which all nations shall be invited. Firstly the rich, and the learned, the wise and the noble; and after that cometh the day of my power; then shall the poor, the lame and the blind, and the deaf, come in unto the marriage of the Lamb, and partake of the supper of the Lord, prepared for the great day to come. Behold I the Lord have spoken it.
And that the testimony might go forth from Zion; yea from the mouth of the city of the heritage of God: yea, for this cause I have sent you hither; and have selected my servant Edward Partridge and have appointed unto him his mission in this land: but if he repent not of his sins, which are unbelief and blindness of heart, let him take heed lest he fall. Behold his mission is given unto him and it shall not be given again. And whoso standeth in this mission, is appointed to be a judge in Israel, like as it was in ancient days, to divide the lands if the heritage of God unto his children; and to judge his people by the testimony of the just, and by the assistance of his counsellors [counselors], according to the laws of the kingdom which are given by the prophets of God: for verily I say unto you, my laws shall be kept on this land.
Let no man think that he is ruler but let God rule him that judgeth, according to the council of his own will: or in other words, him that counselleth, or sitteth upon the judgement [judgment] seat. Let no man break the laws of the land, for he that keepeth the laws of God, hath no need to break the laws of the land: wherefore be subject to the powers that be, until He reigns whose right it is to reign, and subdues all enemies under his feet. Behold the laws which ye have received from my hand, are the laws of the church; and in this light ye shall hold them forth. Behold here is wisdom.
And now as I spake concerning my servant Edward Partridge: this land is the land of his residence, and those whom he has appointed for his counsellors [counselors]. And also the land of the residence of him whom I have appointed to keep my storehouse: wherefore let them bring their families to this land, as they shall counsel between themselves and me: for behold it is not meet that I should command on all things, for he that is compelled in all things, the same is a slothful and not a wise servant: wherefore he receiveth no reward. Verily I say, men should be anxiously engaged in a good cause, and do many things of their own-free will, and bring to pass much righteousness: for the power is in them, wherein they are agents unto themselves. And inasmuch as men do good they shall in no wise lose their reward. But he that doeth not anything until he is commanded, and receiveth a commandment with doubtful
heart, and keepeth it with slothfulness. the same is damned. Who am I that made man, saith the Lord, that will hold him guiltless that obeys not my commandments? Who am I, saith the Lord, that have promised and not fulfilled? I command and a man obeys not, I revoke and they receive not the blessing:-then they say in their hearts, this is not the work of the Lord, for his promises are not fulfilled.-But wo unto such, for their reward lurketh beneath, and not from above.
And now I give unto you further directions concerning this land. It is wisdom in me that my servant Martin Harris should be an example unto the church, in laying his moneys before the bishop of the church. And also this is a law unto every man that cometh unto this land, to receive an inheritance; and he shall do with his moneys according as the law directs. And it is wisdom also, that there should be lands purchased in Independence, for the place of the storehouse: and also for the house of the printing.
And other directions, concerning my servant Martin Harris, shall be given him of the spirit, that he may receive his inheritance as seemeth him good. And let him repent of his sins, for he seeketh the praise of the world.
And also let my servant William W. Phelps stand in the office which I have appointed him, and receive his inheritance in the land.-And also, he hath need to repent, for I the Lord am not well pleased with him, for he seeketh to excel, and he is not sufficiently meek before me. Behold he who has repented of his sins the same is forgiven, and I the Lord remembereth them no more. By this ye may know if a man repenteth of his sins. Behold he will confess them and forsake them. And now verily I say, concerning the residue of the elders of my church, the time has not yet come for many years, for them to receive their inheritance in this land; except they desire it through the prayer of faith, only as it shall be appointed unto them of the Lord. For behold they shall push the people together from the ends of the earth: wherefore assemble yourselves together, and they who are not appointed to stay in this land, let them preach the gospel in the regions round about; and after that, let them return to their homes. Let them preach by the way, and bear testimony of the truth in all places, and call upon the rich, the high, and the low, and the poor to repent; and let them build up churches inasmuch as the inhabitants of the earth will repent.
And let there be an agent appointed by the voice of the church, unto the church in Ohio, to receive monies [moneys] to purchase lands in Zion.
And I give unto my servant Sidney Rigdon, a commandment, that he shall write a description of the land of Zion, and a statement of the will of God, as it shall be made known by the Spirit, unto him; and an epistle and subscription, to be presented unto all the churches, to obtain moneys, to be put into the hands of the Bishop, to purchase lands for an inheritance for the children of God, of himself or the agent, as seemeth him good, or as he shall direct. For behold, verily I say unto you, the Lord willeth that the disciples, and the children of men, should open their hearts even to purchase this whole region of country, as soon as time will permit. Behold here is wisdom; let them do this lest they receive none inheritance, save it be by the shedding of blood.
And again, inasmuch as there is land obtained, let there be workmen sent forth, of all kinds, unto this land, to labor for the saints of God. Let all these things be done in order.-And let the privileges of the lands be made known from time to time, by the bishop, or the agent of the church. And let the work of the gathering be not in haste, nor by flight, but let it be done as it shall be counselled [counseled] by the elders of the church at the conferences, according to the knowledge which they receive from time to time.
And let my servant Sidney Rigdon consecrate and dedicate this land, and the spot of the temple, unto the Lord. And let a conference meeting be called, and after that, let my servant Sidney Rigdon and Joseph Smith, jr. return, and also Oliver Cowdry [Cowdery] with them, to accomplish the residue of the work, which I have appointed unto them in their own land; and the residue shall be ruled by the conferences.
And let no man return from this land, except he bear record by the way, of that which he knows and most assuredly believes. Let that which has been bestowed upon Ziba Peterson, be taken from him: and let him stand as a member in the church, and labor with his own hands, with the brethren, until he is sufficiently chastened for all his sins, for he confesseth them not, and he thinketh to hide them.
Let the residue of the elders of this church, who are coming to this land, some of whom are exceedingly blessed even above measure, also, hold a conference upon this land. And let my servant Edward Partridge direct the conference, which shall be held by them. And let them also return, preaching the gospel by the way, bearing record of the things which are revealed unto them: for verily the sound must go forth from this place into all the world: and unto the uttermost parts of the earth, the gospel
must be preached unto every creature, with signs following them that believe. And behold the Son of Man cometh: Amen.
On the second day of August, I assisted the Colesville branch of the church to lay the first log, for a house, as a foundation for Zion in Kaw township, twelve miles west of Independence. The log was carried and placed by twelve men, in honor of the twelve tribes of Israel . At the same time, through prayer, the land of Zion was consecrated and dedicated for the gathering of the saints, by elder Rigdon: and it was a season of joy to those present, and afforded a glimpse of the future, which time will yet unfold to the satisfaction of the faithful. As we had received a commandment for elder Rigdon to write a description of the land of Zion, we sought for all the information necessary to accomplish so desirable an object.-Unlike the timbered states in the east, except upon the rivers and watercourses; which were verdantly dotted with trees from one to three miles wide, as far as the eye can glance. The beautiful rolling prairies lay spread around like a sea of meadows. The timber is a mixture of oak, hickory, black walnut, elm, cherry, honey locus, [honey locust] mulberry, coffee bean, hackburry, [hack berry], box elder and bass wood, together with the addition of cotton wood, button wood, pecon [pecan], soft and hard maple, upon the bottoms. The shrubbery was beautiful; and consisted in part of plums, grapes, crab apples, and parsimmons [persimmons]. The prairies were decorated with a growth of flowers that seemed as gorgeous and grand as the brilliancy of stars in the heavens, and exceed description. The soil is rich and fertile; from three to ten feet deep, and generally composed of a rich black mould, intermingled with clay and sand. It produces in abundance, wheat, corn, and many other commodities, together with sweet potatoes and cotton. Horses, cattle and hogs, though of an inferior breed, are tolerable plenty, and seem nearly to raise themselves by grazing in the vast prairie range in summer, and feeding upon the bottoms in winter. The wild game is less plenty where man has commenced the cultivation of the soil, than it is a little distance further in the wild prairies. Buffaloe, [buffalo] elk, deer, bear, wolves, beaver, and many lesser animals roam at pleasure. Turkies, [turkeys] geese, swans, ducks, yea a variety of the feathered race are among the rich abundance that graces the delightful regions of this goodly land of the heritage of the children of God. Nothing is more fruitful, or a richer stockholder in the blooming prairies, than the honey bee; honey is but about twenty-five cents per gallon.
The season is mild and delightful nearly three quarters of the year, and as the land of Zion, situated at about equal distances from the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, as well as from the Alleghany [Allegheny] and Rocky mountains, in the thirty-ninth degree of north latitude, and between the tenth and seventeenth degrees of west longitude. It bids fair to become one of the most blessed places on the globe, when the curse is taken from the land, if not before. The winters are milder than in the Atlantic states, of the same parallel of latitude; and the weather is more agreeable, so that were the virtues of the inhabitants only equal to the blessings of the Lord, which he permits to crown the industry and efforts of those inhabitants; there would be a measure of the good things of life: for the benefit of the saints, full, pressed down and running over, even an hundredfold. The disadvantages here, like all new counties are self-evident, lack of mills and schools, together with the natural privations and inconveniences, which the hand of industry, and the refinement, of society with the polish of science overcome. But all these impediments vanished, when it is recollected that the prophets have said concerning Zion in the last days: how the glory of Lebanon is to come upon her; the fir tree, the pine tree, and the box together, to beautify the place of his sanctuary, that he may make the place of his feet glorious, where for brass he will bring gold, and for iron he will bring silver, and for wood brass, and for stones iron; and where the feast of fat things will be given to the just; yea, when the splendor of the Lord is brought to one consideration, for the good of his people: the calculations of men and the vain glory of the world vanishes; and we exclaim: God will shine-the perfection of beauty out of Zion.
On the third day of August, the spot for the Temple, a little west of Independence, was dedicated in presence of eight men, among whom were myself, Sidney Rigdon, Edward Partridge, W. W. Phelps, Oliver Cowdery, Martin Harris, and Joseph Coe. The 87th Psalm was read, and the scene was solemn and impressive. On the 4th I attended the first conference in the land of Zion. It was held at the house of brother Joshua Lewis, in Kaw township, in presence of the Colesville branch of the church. The spirit of the Lord was there. On the 7th I attended the funeral of sister Poly Knight, the wife of Joseph Knight, Sen. This was the first death in the church in this land, and I can say a worthy member sleeps in Jesus till the resurrection.-I also received the following
Revelation given in Zion, August, 1831.
Behold, blessed, saith the Lord, are they who
have come up unto this land with an eye single to my glory, according to my commandments: for them that live shall inherit the earth, and them that die shall rest from all their labors, and their works shall follow them, and they shall receive a crown in the mansions of my Father, which I have prepared for them; Yea, blessed are they whose feet stand upon the land of Zion, who have obeyed my gospel, for they shall receive for their reward the good things of the earth; and it shall bring forth in its strength: and they shall also be crowned with blessings from above; yea and with commandments not a few; and with revelations in their time: they that are faithful and diligent before me.
Wherefore I give unto them a commandment, saying thus: Thou shalt love the Lord thy God, with all thy heart, with all thy might, mind, and strength: and in the name of Jesus Christ thou shalt serve him. Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. Thou shalt not steal. Neither commit adultery, nor kill, nor do any thing like unto it. Thou shalt thank the Lord thy God in all things. Thou shalt offer a sacrifice unto the Lord thy God in righteousness; even that of a broken heart and a contrite spirit. And that thou mayest more fully keep thyself unspotted from the world, thou shalt go to the house of prayer and offer up thy sacraments upon my holy day; for verily this is a day appointed unto you to rest from your labors, and to pay thy devotions unto the Most High; nevertheless thy vows shall be offered up in righteousness on all days, and at all times; but remember that on this, the Lord's day, thou shalt offer thine oblations, and thy sacraments, unto the Most High, confessing thy sins unto thy brethren, and before the Lord.
And on this day thou shalt do none other thing, only let thy food be prepared with singleness of heart, that thy fasting may be perfect, or in other words, that thy joy may be full. Verily this is fasting and prayer; or, in other words, rejoicing and prayer.
And inasmuch as ye do these things, with thanksgiving, with cheerful hearts and countenances; not with much laughter, for this is sin, but with a glad heart and a cheerful countenance; verily I say, that inasmuch as ye do this the fulness [fullness] of the earth is yours; the beasts of the fields, and the fowls of the air, and that which climbeth upon the trees, and walketh upon the earth; yea, and the herb, and the good things which cometh of the earth, whether for food or raiment, or for houses or for barns, or for orchards, or for gardens, or for vineyards: yea, all things which cometh of the earth, in the season thereof, is made for the benefit and the use of man, both to please the eye, and to gladden the heart: yea, for food and raiment, for taste and for smell, to strengthen the body, and to enliven the soul.
And it pleaseth God that he hath given all these things unto man: for unto this end were they made, to be used with judgment, not to excess, neither by extortion: and in nothing doth man offend God, or against none is his wrath kindled, save those who confess not his hand in all things, and obey not his commandments. Behold this is according to the laws and the prophets: wherefore trouble me no more concerning this matter, but learn that he who doeth the works of righteousness, shall receive his reward, even peace in this world, and eternal life in the world to come. I the Lord have spoken it and the spirit beareth record: Amen.
On the 8th, as there had been some inquiry among the elders what they were to do, I received the following
Revelation given August, 1831.
Behold thus saith the Lord unto the elders of his church, who are to return speedily to the land from whence they came. Behold it pleaseth me, that you have come hither; but with some I am not well pleased, for they will not open their mouths, but hide the talent which I have given unto them, because of the fear of man. Wo unto such for mine anger is kindled against them.
And it shall come to pass, if they are not more faithful unto me, it shall be taken away, even that which they have, for I the Lord ruleth in the heavens above, and among the armies of the earth; and in the day when I shall make up my jewels, all men shall know what it is that bespeaketh the power of God. But verily I will speak unto you concerning your journey unto the land from whence you came. Let there be a craft made, or bought, as seemeth you good, it mattereth not unto me, and take your journey speedily for the place which is called St. Louis. And from thence let my servants Sidney Rigdon, and Joseph Smith, jr. and Oliver Cowdry [Cowdery], take their journey for Cincinnati: and in this place let them lift up their voice, and declare my word with loud voices, without wrath or doubting, lifting up holy hands upon them. For I am able to make you holy, and your sins are forgiven you.
And let the residue take their journey from St. Louis, two by two, and preach the word, not in haste, among the congregations of the wicked, until they return to the churches from whence they came. And all this for the good of the churches; for this intent I have sent them. And let my servant Edward Partridge impart of the money which I have given him,
a portion unto mine elders, who are commanded to return; and he that is able, let him return it by the way of the agent, and he that is not, of him it is not required. And now I speak of the residue who are to come unto this land. Behold they have been sent to preach my gospel among the congregations of the wicked: wherefore, I give unto them a commandment thus: Thou shalt not idle away thy time: neither shalt thou bury thy talent that it may not be known.
And after thou hast come up unto the land of Zion, and hast proclaimed my word, thou shalt speedily return proclaiming my word among the congregations of the wicked. Not in haste, neither in wrath nor with strife: and shake off the dust of thy feet against those who receive thee not, not in their presence, lest thou provoke them, but in secret, and wash thy feet as a testimony against them in the day of judgment. Behold this is sufficient for you, and by the mouth of my servant Joseph Smith, jr. it shall be mode [made] known concerning Sidney Rigdon and Oliver Cowdry [Cowdery], the residue hereafter; even so: Amen.
There is no parent possessing even good moral feelings, who does not desire to see his children become good, great, and useful in society; and admitting the position that the better children are trained or brought up, the more interesting they are, and the more useful they are prepared to be in their sphere of action through life, the parent has liberal ground to hope for the consummation of an object so desirable. The minds of children are susceptible of cultivation, not only for the growth, but also for change, or improvement of the will or disposition, if needful; and every mother and father of children, and especially the "Saints" may be able to judge by the common results of the works of mankind, and to understand by divine revelation and experience, what general habits or ideas should be found, or instilled into the minds of their children, that they may be inclined to lead an honorable and useful life; and few, if any who have the care of children, can, with all the vocabulary of information before them that history, divine revelation, and experience has spread over the world, be ignorant of the responsibility that rests upon them to train up their children in the way they should go. Children are not accountable for the deeds of their parents; but if through neglect, or example, they are encouraged in vice, they will grow up, perhaps to pierce the heart of the heedless father and care worn mother, with shame; and bring their grey [gray] hairs down with sorrow to the grave; for the child becomes, perhaps a vagabond, to regale himself upon the sneers and universal disgust of a virtuous community, until he finds a pauper's end; or a criminal, to atone under the penalty of his country's laws for the work of his guilty hands; or a tyrant in power, to make the people mourn under the dread sway of his scepter, in the cruel exercise of the poisonous principles that were fostered in his heart while dandling upon his mother's lap, or sporting in wanton strife under a father's heedless eye.
Thousands are brought to these varying and disgraceful points of character, with all their attendant train of evils, where the very essence and power thereof is first planted, or suffered to grow in the mind of the offspring, through the neglect or example of the parent, until the current becomes of such force and magnitude as to defy the power of human skill to prevent its desoluting [desolating] march.
But, is there no remedy for these things? If, then, we hope or look for a remedy, where shall we go? Surely to the parent; to the tribunal where all the inflictions of the human mind can be corrected while it is in the milk of formation, and weighed while in the mould of habit; for
"Just as the twig is bent, the tree's inclined."
So early habits lead the human mind.
Could parents only appreciate the ceaseless round of good that would result from the proper cultivation of the human mind while in the infant or juvenile state, the grand bane of virtue and happiness, the web of fashion and indifference, is probably not so perfectly interwoven with all sense of the duty and privileges of our race, as to cause them to forego the use of any lawful means for the consequent prevention of an almost incalculable amount of shame and needless suffering. But even while in consideration of so desirable an object as the universal honor and happiness of mankind, the necessity of the proper cultivation of the youthful mind is admitted. It would be to organize a complete system to apply successively, as the rule of in all particular cases in the government of children; for as children differ in temper or turn of mind, so must the rule or particular mode of government differ also. Nevertheless, there are some general rules that will apply in all cases; and such was the apostle Paul's manner of instruction to parents; hence he says: "Fathers, provoke not your children to anger, lest they be discouraged." This rule will in the government of all children, and accordingly, no child should be punished for a crime, until
he is first made sensible that he has done wrong, otherwise he will be angry, believing he has been punished without a just cause, and if such a course should be persisted in, the child would soon become discouraged, or weary of trying to please or obey, or even resort to deceit and treachery, to revenge or shun his parent's power. In order to avoid this and other difficulties, the parent should never suffer himself on any occasion, however trifling or however important, to deceive or lie to his children. This rule, although it is almost universally violated, can easily and reasonably be pursued, for there is no occasion wherein falsehood or deception is needful to make any requisition or permission profitable for children; and it will be found much easier to amuse and please them without the use of any false means whatever; in fact, this is the only way by which children can be made always to delight in your voice and presence, or in your precept and example; and there is no danger of the discouragement or anger of your children, under your corrections or requirements, if they find that they always meet with truth in your words, and justice in your conduct towards them, but on the contrary will consider themselves in the violation of your orders, and worthy to be punished accordingly. This is a just principle, and children are not so ignorant of the nature of right and wrong, as to confide in those who trifle with them, or lean upon the arm that deceives them, but will struggle to the extent of their knowledge and power to be free from such influences.
(To be Continued.)
THE GIPSIES [GYPSIES]-WHO ARE THEY?
The following extracts are taken from a long article in the London Christian Examiner, written by a gentlemen [gentleman] of great literary research. Whoever has read Borrow's Bible in Spain will at once recognize the character of Gipsies [Gypsies], Gritanas, or Rhomas-all of which are synonymous terms:
"And whom have we seen, with the mark of a fugitive imprinted on his brow? yes, with that more infamous brand-mark of a vagabond also; but one who strongly resembles, while yet he wildly differs from the descendant of the patriarch Judah? He who has traveled on the continent of Europe, has met with him in every European land. He who has visited Asia has met with him there. And what British, or Scotish, [Scottish] or Welsh, or Irish child, knows not the swarthy hue, remembers nor the dark and piercing eye of the ever restless, wandering tribes of the Gritana, or as they are called in this country the Gipsey [gypsy] race?-a race whose origin none can tell you, and of which none are more ignorant than themselves. Ask them whence they came?-They know not. From whence they sprang?-They know not. What is their religion?-They have none. Whom do they worship?-They are without God in the world. What is their language? That of the nations among whom they sojourn. Are they Jews? They tell you they are not. Are they Gentiles? No. Like the Jews they are wanderers without a home. Like the Jews, they are mingled among all people, and yet distinct from all, despised, suspected, persecuted, and hated, without a country, without a king: with a nationality unbroken either by time, persecution, or admixture of blood; with a spirit of clanship or brotherhood that nothing can quench; with a distrust of the Gentiles that nothing can overcome.
But the Jew is a worshiper of Jehovah-the Gritana, or Rhoma, knows him not. The Jew venerates, and studies, the ancient oracles of revealed truth-the Rhoma scarcely knows that such oracles exist. The Jew would rather die than defile himself with what to him is ceremonially unclean-the Rhoma will feed on the most loathsome food, even that which is torn, or which hath died of itself, eating his defiled bread among the Gentiles, fain to fill his belly with the husks that swine do eat. How then, can these wanderers be of common origin? The Jew, though cursed has been still intrusted with the oracles of God, and has therefore retained his name and a zeal for his worship; a knowledge of the language of his forefathers, of the history of the country from whence he has been driven; and a hope, an undying, an unquenchable hope, of one day returning to that land, around which hover all his thoughts, and whose very dust is dear to him as the gold of Ophir. But the Gritana was sent forth to wander without the written word, and consequently he has, and must have, lost all trace of the name and character of the God of his fathers; all knowledge of the country from whence he came; of the parental source from whence he sprang; of the language in which his father spoke; of the meaning of his judicial wanderings; and of the glorious hopes that the word, the promise, and the oath of the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, hold out to the scattered tribes, whither of the house of Judah or of Israel.
Of these mysterious wanderers, be they who they may, (and who they are, I presume not to say, although I firmly believe that they represent the house of Israel,) there are not fewer
than three millions scattered over the face of the earth, and of the well known tribes of Judah and Benjamin about ten millions more-each testifying, though in different ways, to the truth of a faithful but offended God."
HOW DID IT GET THERE?
A gentleman exhibited to us a piece of cedar, the history of which is as follows: 'In digging a well on the property of Smith, Brothers, & Co., at Bunker Hill, Illinois, at the distance of fifty-three feet beneath the surface, they came to a cedar log, embedded in the earth, and extending across the well. It was cut off; was found to be five or six inches through, and was in a state of perfect preservation. The town of Bunker Hill, as many persons know, is situated in the middle of a large and level prairie, and the gentleman who has it in his possession, who is a bit of a Yankee, 'wants to know how that log of cedar got out there?'
SHOCK OF AN EARTHQUAKE IN NEW JERSEY.
We see by the Trenton papers that on Saturday night there were several distinct jars of the earth felt at that place. On Sunday morning, between 2 and 7 o'clock, at Morristown, two of the shakes jarred some of the dwelling houses so much as to wake up the families.-The doors and windows rattled distinctly.-Soon after daybreak, a crack of some hundred yards in length was discovered in the earth, in the vicinity of Gibbons new Hotel, the opening being about a fourth of an inch in width.
RUINS OF INDIAN GREATNESS.
The surplus wealth of India, that used to be employed in building extensive towns, crowded ghaunts magnificent stone or brick terraces, some of them capable of containing from six to eight thousand people, enormous massive bridges, splendid morques [morgues] and temples, is all gone; it has disappeared entirely. All the towns in India, with a very few exceptions, are in ruins. Delhi is surrounded by ruins; Agrai, Booranpore, Aurudgabad, have immense suburbs in ruins. The Deckman is a heap of ruins. Many towns in Central India that had their hundreds of thousands of inhabitants, are now literally without one, and are swarming with leopards, tigers, elks, and buffaloes. In deep forests you stumble upon Hindoo [Hindu] temples, Mohammedan gateways, stone talks [walks?] eight hundred yards square, brick walls of large dimensions; scores of acres of burying grounds, and all the other concomitants and proofs of wealth, and power and population. Malthus would never have written his too celebrated work, nor Godwin [Goodwin?] ever written his too little valued answers, had they been in India. India is a large forest, with a great many cultivated spots. India-I say it after due consideration-could contain and support five times its present population with ease; and yet it is unquestionably the poorest country in the known world. To the state of the wealth and resources of the original Hindoo [Hindu] monarchs imagination can assign no limits. The more I think on the subject, the more I am confounded.
It appears from the Boston Post that the second advent cause is flourishing in that city with as much zeal as it did during the early part of the past year. Mr. Miller is preaching at the great Tabernacle, to crowded audiences, night and day. The Post says:
"From the great number of people who daily throng the Tabernacle and listen to what is there said, there appears to be no abatement of zeal or earnestness in this cause, and no want of confidence in the principles held out, although the expiration of the time (the ensuing spring) is so near at hand. Mr. Miller appears to have fully recovered his health, and to have renewed his youth and vigor."
The proselytes of Miller are also holding forth in this city, as well as in the principle cities of the west. The Cleveland (Ohio) Herald, of the 23d ult., has the following:
"As the end of time, according to Mr. Miller draws near at hand, his disciples profess to discern the future more clearly. The Rev. Mr. Fitch, of this city is now preaching the doctrine of annihilation of the wicked! and we learn that a portion of the second advent hearers have embraced the same views."
MORE TURKISH FANATICISM.
A letter from Constantinople in the Gazette des Trilunaux, has the following: "The great subject of conversation here, is an instance of fanaticism which has taken place at Salonica. Ibrahim Pacha, noted for the severity of his administrations, was lately appointed governor of that district, and chose for his secretary a young man of good abilities and high family. The young Secretary was proceeding, to his post in the Austrian steamer, the Crescent when he perceived on board a Circassian, who was going to sell, to any rich personage, his two daughters, young girls of extraordinary beauty, who accompanied him. The secretary, when he heard of this intended act of barbarism, could not restrain his indignation, and spoke in very indignant terms to the father relative to
his unnatural conduct. The latter maintained that he was acting in every respect according to the laws of the Koran, and that no man had a right to interfere in his private affairs. The young man gave up the dispute, and paced the deck, smoking several pipes to allay his indignation. The Circassian, on landing, lodged a formal complaint before the Cadi against the secretary for having smoked his pipe and taken refreshments on a day during the Ramazan, when every true mussalman is expressly forbidden to touch any thing to recruit nature, before sunset,
The young man was summoned before the magistrates to answer for such infringement of the sacred law, and not only avowed that he had done so, but declared that it was high time to give up such ridiculous practices. The cadi immediately proceeded to pass judgment on a man guilty of such heterodox doctrine, and sentenced him to death. The sentence was transmitted to Ibrahim, who, though willing to save his secretary, did not venture to act from his own authority. He referred the matter to Constantinople, in order to cause delay; but the cadi, on his side, having sent in his report, the matter was of necessity brought before ,tho [the] grand council, where the judgment was confirmed, and the execution ordered to take place immediately. Probably, at the present time, the young man has ceased to exist."
TIMES AND SEASONS.
CITY OF NAUVOO,
FRIDAY, MARCH 1, 1844
FOR PRESIDENT, GEN. JOSEPH SMITH,
Having now raised the name of our General and prophet to the head of our columns, it becomes us, as Latter Day Saints, to be wise, prudent, and enerjetic, [energetic] in the cause that we pursue; and not let any secondary influences control our minds, or govern our proceedings. The step that we have taken is a bold one, and requires our united efforts, perseverance, and diligence; but important as it may be, it is no greater than others have taken, and they have conceived that they had a right, without molestation to pursue that course, and to vote for that man whose election, they in their wisdom, thought would be most conducive to the public weal. As American citizens, then, we presume that all will concede to us this right; and whatever may be their views respecting the policy of such a step, they will acknowledge that we act legally, justly and constitutionally in pursuing our present course. Some have nominated Henry Clay, some Col. Johnson, others John C. Calhoun, others Daniel Webster, and others Martin Van Buren. Those several committees unquestionably thought that they had each of them made the wisest selection, in naming the man of their choice: they selected their several candidates, because they thought that they were the wisest, the greatest statesmen, and the most competent to fill the Presidential Chair, whilst they severally thought that the other candidates were incompetent.-We have been governed by the same principles; and if others think they have made the wisest selection, so do we; if others think they have nominated the greatest statesman, so do we; and while those several committees think that none of the nominations made are so good as their own; we think that the man of our choice is the most able, the most competent, the best qualified, and would fill the Presidential Chair with greater dignity to the nation, and that his election would be conducive of more happiness and prosperity at home and abroad, than that of any other man in these United States.
This is a thing that we, as Latter Day Saints know, and it now devolves upon us, as an imperative duty, to make others acquainted with the same things; and to use all our influence at home, and abroad, for the accomplishment of this object. Mr. Smith is not so generally known personally as are several of the above named candidates, and although he has been much spoken of as a man, he has been a great deal calumniated and misrepresented, and his true character is very little known. It is for us to take away this false coloring, and by lecturing, and publishing, and circulating his works; his political views; his honor, integrity, and virtue; stop the foul mouth of slander, and present him before the public in his own colors, that he may be known, respected, and supported.
A special conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints will be held at Nauvoo, near the Temple, commencing on Saturday, the 6th of April next.
All the elders abroad who can by any means
make it convenient to attend, are requested to be present on the occasion, as there is business of importance to attend to.
As this conference is going to call a multitude of elders together, from different parts, we would remind them of one or two things, and as we always begin with the least first, we would inform them that it would be a good opportunity to forward or bring along subscriptions for the 'Neighbor,' and, 'Times and Seasons,' and they would thereby very much assist the press, and help to spread the principles of intelligence.
Again those who are desirous of forwarding means to the Temple can do so, and help to liberate the hands of the committee, and the Trustee in Trust.
It is in contemplation to devote all our energies to the completion of the Temple this season, and, to let the Nauvoo House stand until the Temple is finished. By a unity of efforts, it is expected that the roof can be put on by next fall, and the building be enclosed.
Another thing that we would remind the brethren of, is that of the Presidential election. Don't forget to mention this thing in your perigrinations [peregrinations]. Tell the people who would be the best man, and the most able statesman; who could stand uncorrupted by bribes, and uninfluenced by power, other than the power of justice, and the cause of right; tell them where they can find a man of morality, purity, and virtue; tell them where they can find a man of sterling integrity, who is governed by the principles of righteousness; a patriot and a philanthrophist [philanthropist], who has both the disposition and moral fortitude to administer justice, and whose delight it would be to administer to the wants of the nation; to 'break of every yoke and to let the oppressed go free.' Use all of your own influence, and get the brethren, in every part to use theirs also. Recollect, for President, GENERAL JOSEPH SMITH.
In speaking of the blessings of the House of Israel, in the last days, one of the greatest blessings is that God will "gather them from among the nations," and restore them to their old possessions, that Jerusalem shall be inhabited in her own place, and that the Jews shall dwell in their own land; this at present is the great hope of the Jews, "that God will yet be favorable to Zion, and remember the outcasts of Jacob." Ezekiel, in speaking upon this subject, says:-
Ezek., xx; 33-42: "As I live, saith the Lord God, Surely with a stretched out arm, and with a fury poured out, will I rule over you: And I will bring you out from the people, and will gather you out of the countries wherein you are scattered, with a mighty hand and with a stretched out arm, and with fury poured out. And I will bring you into the wilderness of the people, and there will I plead with you face to face; like as I pleaded with your fathers in the wilderness of the land of Egypt, so will I plead with you saith the Lord God. And I will cause you to pass under the rod, and I will bring you into the bond of the covenant: and I will purge out from among you the rebels, and them that transgress against me: I will bring them forth out of the country where they sojourn, and they shall not enter into the land of Israel: and ye shall know that I am the Lord. As for you, O house of Israel, thus saith the Lord God; go ye, serve ye every one his idols, and hereafter also, if ye will not hearken unto me: but pollute ye my holy name no more with your gifts, and with your idols. For in mine holy mountain, in the mountain of the height of Israel, saith the Lord God, there shall all the house of Israel, all of them in the land serve me: there will I accept them, and there will I require your offerings, and the first fruits of your oblations, with all your holy things. I will accept you with your sweet savour, when I bring you out from the people, and gather you out of the countries wherein ye have been scattered; and I will be sanctified in you before the heathen. And ye shall know that I am the Lord, when I shall bring you into the land of Israel, into the country for the which I lifted up mine hand to give it to your fathers,"
Isaiah, while wrapped in prophetic vision beheld the same glory. He says:-
Isaiah, xi; 10-1.2: "And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek, and his rest shall be glorious. And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people, which shall be left from Assyria, and from Egypt, and from Pathros, and from Cush, and from Elam, and from Shinar, and from Hamath, and from the islands of the sea. And he shall set up an ensign for the nations, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth."
It is unnecessary for us to enter into all the scriptural details relative to this subject; the principle is so fully demonstrated in the oracles of truth, that he that runs may read, and
that man must be blind indeed who does not recognize it.
As we have stated before, not only will the Jews be gathered, but other nations also, to fulfil [fulfill] the purposes of God, and the promises made to the fathers. The Lord will send "fishers, and they will fish them, and afterwards he will send hunters, and they will hunt them from the deserts, and dens, and caves of the earth." God's elect will be gathered from the four winds of heaven; they will come on mules and liters, and swift beasts; the ships of Tarshish will be employed to bring, them, and when the Lord founds Zion, "the nations will be gathered together and the kingdoms to serve the Lord. Zion will be established in righteousness, and all nations will flock to her standard." During the millennial reign, the saints will have their place of gathering, and when satan is let loose, and Gog and Magog goes forth to battle, they will find the saints in a city, and "encompass the city of the saints round about." When the New Jerusalem descends we shall find the people of God within it, and outside the walls, dogs, sorcerers, &c. &c.; and when the earth is purified, and becomes celestial, it will be prepared for celestial bodies to inhabit. The righteous will then be ultimately gathered together into one place, possess the renewed earth alone; the wicked will go to their own place, and a purified, renewed people will inhabit a pure, renewed, celestial earth, and free from tribulation, sorrow and death, be crowned with thrones, principalities, and powers, and rejoice in the presence of God and the Lamb, forever, and ever.
The work of the Lord is rolling on in different parts of the United States, in the Canadas and also in England; our accounts from all these places are very interesting.
It is impossible for us to find room for all the communications which are constantly teeming in upon us, relative to the prosperity of the cause of our common master. We give however, a few extracts which may be of interest.
Elder David Savage writes us from St. Joseph, Michigan, under the date of February 8th, as follows:-"I am exceedingly happy of the privilege of writing to you to let you know the state of the church, and the minds of the people generally throughout this part of the country, and also to forward you subscribers for your invaluable paper, the "Times and Seasons."
There is calls for preaching on every hand and every prospect of an abundant harvest.-There are several elders in this neighborhood; but like myself, they are all young in the gospel, and we should esteem it a peculiar privilege if some more experienced elder could come to our assistance, for, "the harvest truly is great, but the laborers are few." By the help of our divine master we have been enabled to gather a few sheaves; but there are a certain set of scape-goats running around trying to poison their minds and to rob them of their pearl of great price: Their labors however to the present have proved ineffectual, and "truth has prevailed." * * *
We have received the following from elder John Gregg:-
"I send you these lines to inform you that I wish to send you on your excellent paper, and I herewith transmit. * * * We truly wish to do all we can to spread those wholesome truths contained in your papers, which to us that are deprived of the privileges of meeting with the saints, are indeed a welcome messenger. We know God in his providence will soon open the way, that we may enjoy the happy privilege of living with the saints at home; but until then, and while we are at a distance, we wish not to be idle, and I am endeavoring to thrust in the sickle, in my way, which I hope is not without success. Of late I have been laboring among the scattering branches, built up by my brother Mower and others. They are generally strong in the faith of the new and everlasting covenant, and rejoicing in the Lord; they are intending to move up to Nauvoo as soon as possible. We should feel ourselves much obliged if any of the traveling elders who are passing this way, would give us a call. I both long and pray for the prosperity of the cause and that our Heavenly Father would smile on the saints at Nauvoo, and on their beloved presidency."
Elder George T. Leach, of New York, writes under date of January 29, 1844, as follows. * * * "I have only time to say that the saints of New York and vicinity, are rejoicing in the truth, and the good cause is moving onward; our numbers are increasing from week to week, in New York, and we feel determined by the grace of God to keep the ball in motion. I close with my best wishes for your prosperity and happiness."
The following is from Smith Tuttle, Esq., of Fair Haven Connecticut, bearing the date of February 15th.
P. S. Since writing the foregoing, Mr. Davis has called on me, and says he baptized four last week, in North Haven, and expects to baptize a number more next week. His meetings are very much crowded, and he feels very
much incouraged [encouraged]. He expects to send for several numbers of the Times and Seasons in a few days. I send here enclosed, by his request, three dollars for the building of the Temple; from miss Eliza Johnson, of Madison, Connecticut."
A letter from John E. Page, states that he has been "making a great many Mormons in Boston and vicinity:" that he has collected and given into the hands of Jedediah Grant, of Philadelphia, twenty one dollars and seventy five cents, to be forwarded to the temple; he speaks of elder Grant in the highest terms, as a workman that need not to be ashamed, "rightly dividing the word of truth," as a "prudent faithful man of God." We are glad to hear so good an account of our esteemed brother, and we wish him success in his labors. Elder Page has gone to Washington, where he purposes proclaiming to the rulers of our nation, the great principles of eternal truth. We are pleased to know that he has gone there, for we think that he is the very man to "counsel our counsellors [counselors], and to teach our senators wisdom." We have various other accounts which we must omit at the present time.
We feel very much obliged to those elders which we have named, and to all others who have kindly assisted us in circulating our papers. They are subserving the cause of truth: spreading intelligence, and putting people in possession of principles that will speak when they themselves, are far away.
The Philadelphia Sun states that a man named Zimerman, residing in Huntington, in proving an arbitration with his neighbor, when affirming in relation to his account, said: "if what I have stated be not true, I hope the Almighty will send me to hell!" The words were scarcely uttered, when he fell over and expired.
The inhabitants of the city were called together last Thursday, (the 7th inst.,) by president Joseph Smith, for the purpose of giving some general instructions relative to our temporal economy, and also to enter into some general arrangements relative to the building of the Temple. There was a very large congregation assembled on the occasion, who listened with great interest to the timely and judicious remarks of the prophet, and other speakers who addressed the assembly. Appearances would indicate that there is every prospect of the Temple being enclosed this season.
THE WEATHER-Winter has gone, and we are no longer in the ice bound, frozen regions. The ice has all floated out of the river, which is fast rising; and numbers of boats have passed up and down the majestic Mississippi. The weather is getting warm, and everything bears the aspect of approaching spring.
The High Council of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, at Nauvoo, to the Saints of this Stake: . . . . . GREETING.
BELOVED BRETHREN:-Realizing as we do, the importance of the work in which we are engaged, we deem it expedient to lay before you such matters from time to time, as in our opinion, will be beneficial to the saints, and the spirit in us may seem to require. We would remind our brethren, the elders, who have at sundry times been sent forth as flaming heralds: messengers of the everlasting gospel, who proclaim a message of salvation to their fellow men, thereby gathering and bringing up to Zion the scattered elect of God, to be taught more perfectly the principles of salvation; that whilst their messages is abroad, we have had our mission to remain at Nauvoo, and to participate with the saints in the blessings of poverty, if such it may be called, amid sickness and distress, in the vexations and turmoils of the unruly and ungodly, for which no man has paid us, for days, weeks, months and years; that our time has been spent in endeavoring to settle difficulties, set in order the things needful to salvation; in trying to reconcile and cement the feelings of our brethren to each other in the spirit of the gospel, whilst at times, circumstances of a more painful nature have been presented. Individuals have been brought before us, charged with high crimes in the violation of the laws of heaven, on whom much patient exertion in the labors of love have by us been bestowed, to reclaim them from the error and evil of their doings. We regret to have it to say, that in some instances our efforts have been fruitless, for after we have found in them an obstinate and unyielding spirit to the principles of right, we have (reluctantly) been compelled to sever them from the church as withered branches. Such persons not unfrequently [infrequently] manifest their wickedness by their trifling with, and bidding defiance to all, and every good rule, regulation and law, set forth for the guidance of all saints. One singular trait of their depravity is frequently manifested by their going to some excluded elder and getting re-baptized into the church, not having first made the least satisfaction, (as was required) to such as they have injured. We have to say that baptism in such cases is not valid,
and cannot profit; we here continue to say let such expelled persons be first reconciled to his injured brother, and bring forth fruit meet for repentance, or in case of dissatisfaction with our decision take an appeal and reverse it, if found wrong.
Expelled persons, not complying with these rules (which we believe are in accordance with the order of heaven) whom we have been once necessitated to withdraw fellowship from, cannot be restored in any legal way, and we would say that all such clandestine creepings in to the church, is climbing up some other way, and that such persons can only be considered as thieves and robbers, we would also remind the elders that it is improper for them to re-baptize any such expelled persons, while they remain thus obstinate, as aforesaid, and that it will subject them to censure, and bring them to trial before a proper tribunal of the church.
We therefore, hope for the future, that certain officious, forward feeling elders will be more prudent in such cases hereafter,
We remain yours in the bonds of the new and everlasting covenant,
WILLIAM MARKS, }PRESIDENTS.
CHARLES C. RICH, }
Samuel Bent, James Alred,
L. D. Wilson, Alpheus Cutler,
David Fulmer, George W. Harris,
Thomas Grover, Aaron Johnson,
Newell Knight, W. Huntington, sen.
Leonard Sobey, H. G. Sherwood,
Hosea Stout, Clerk.
To the Editor of the Times and Seasons.
DEAR SIR:-As you are placed as a watchman in Zion, and your opinion is respected by the members of the church, I should be very much gratified by your informing me, and not only me, but the public, through the medium of your valuable paper, the Times and Seasons, what your views are in regard to balls and dancing, as it has lately existed in our city.
I assure you Sir, that it is not through any captious feeling that I make the request, but as I am the father of a family, having both sons and daughters, over whom the great God has placed me as a father and a watchman, and to whom I feel responsible for the conduct of my children: being moreover an elder in the church, I feel desirous to know what to teach my children, and the world. I have heretofore been very scrupulous about these matters, with regard to this thing, some being for, and some against the principle. I wish Sir, not to be superstitious, but know what is right and then do it. There are many others who possess the same feelings as myself, and who would feel highly gratified by an expression from you relative to this subject.
With sentiments of respect
I am Sir, yours in the ever-
A FATHER AND ELDER IN ISRAEL.
P. S. If the prophet could spare time, and would favor us with his views on the subject, I should feel highly gratified.
In answer to the above, if our opinion is considered worth anything, we are free to give it.
We have always considered that there existed on the minds of the religious community, a great deal of unnecessary superstition in relation to dancing, but perhaps this feeling is engendered more through other associations and evils connected with it, than from the thing itself. There certainly can be no harm in dancing in and of itself, as an abstract principle, but like all other athletic exercises, it has a tendency to invigorate the system and to promote health. Gymnastic exercises were considered as necessary in former days as any other part of tuition, and in England, and in other parts of Europe, they have been revived of late, and are considered beneficial; and even in America, in the east, we have accounts of gymnastic exercises being introduced, and practiced even by the ladies;-wrestling, running, climbing, dancing, or anything that has a tendency to circulate the blood is not injurious, but must rather be considered beneficial to the human system, if pursued in moderation.-Therefore, looking at dancing merely as an athletic exercise, or as something having a tendency to add to the grace and dignity of man, by enabling him to have a more easy and graceful attitude, certainly no one could object to it. So much then for dancing as a science.
We find by referring to the scriptures that dancing was not only tolerated, but practiced as a religious rite in olden times. In the second book of Samuel, vi chapter 13th and 14th verses, we have an account of a day of rejoicing. When the ark of God was brought from the house of Obededoin to the city of David with gladness we read; "and it was so, that they that bear the ark of the Lord had gone six paces, he sacrificed oxen and fatlings, and David danced before the Lord with all his might; and David was girded with a linen ephod." Here was a man of God engaged on one of the most solemn religious exercises, and dancing was one prominent part of the ceremony. We find also by a reference to the
21st chapter of Judges, that when the children of Benjamin had sinned against God, and had been nearly destroyed, and their wives and children cut off, that they made use of a stratagem, in order that they might obtain more wives, and went to Shiloh, where there was a yearly feast of the Lord; and where the daughters of Shiloh came forth in the dance.
At the time that the Lord delivered the children of Israel out of the hands of the Egyptians, "Miram [Miriam], prophetess, sister of Aaron, took a timbrel in her hand, and all the women went out after her with timbrels and with dances. And Miriam answered them, sing ye to the Lord, for he has triumphed gloriously, the horse and his rider hath he thrown into the sea;" Exo., xv; 18. In all of the above instances, it was adopted for the purpose of celebrating the praise of God. Such was the case with David on his return from slaying Goliah [Goliath]: "Did they not sing one to another, of him in dances, saying, Saul hath slain his thousand, and David his ten thousand;" 1st Samuel, xxi; 11.-When Japthah had gained a signal victory over the Ammonites, his daughter "came out to meet him with timbrels, and dances," and David, in speaking of Israel, says: "Let them praise his name in the dance; let them sing praises unto him with timbrels and harp." From the whole of the above, it is very evident that dancing was always used as part of the service of God, and not as an idle recreation; and that it was generally practiced to celebrate some signal victory, some remarkable deliverance, or on some particular days of religious festivity or rejoicing; and Jeremiah in speaking of the blessings that shall flow to his people in the last days, looks at it in this point of view, and says: "Then shall the virgin rejoice in the dance, both young men and old together; for I will turn their mourning into joy, and will comfort them, and make them rejoice from sorrow."
This then is the kind of dancing spoken of in the scriptures, and if we are asked what our views are concerning dancing, we can only answer, that they are just such as the scriptures set forth, and when we can see such a dance, we shall join in it heartily. We do not consider that the dancing that is now practiced is of that kind. We never heard God's name praised, nor his glory exalted in any of them. Nor do we think that there is the least desire to glorify God in the dancing of the present day. So far then as the dancing that is now practised [practiced] is concerned; we do not believe that it is a scriptural dancing; or the thing that was practised [practiced] in former days, and that it has not a tendency to glorify God, or to benefit mankind. As an abstract principle, as we stated before, we have no objections to it; but when it leads people into bad company and causes them to keep untimely hours, it has a tendency to enervate and weaken the system, and lead to profligate and intemperate habits. And so far as it does this, so far it is injurious to society, and corrupting the morals of youth. Solomon says that "there is a time to dance:" but that time is not at eleven or twelve o'clock at night, nor at one, two, three, or four o'clock in the morning.
Sir: If you should judge the following to be of any interest to your readers, it is at your disposal. W. W. Woodruff.
Pleasant Springs, Kemper co., Miss.,
January 29th 1844.
Dear Sir: It is not with an ordinary degree of satisfaction that I embrace the present opportunity of writing a few lines to you, to let you know where I am and what I am doing. I left home on the 12th of August last; came down the river to Vicks Burg; travelled [traveled] into the country about forty miles; preached a few times; was taken very ill, and remained unable to preach for about four weeks. I then got better and began to preach as soon as I felt able. In company with elders Hewet and Gully, I started for Alabama, traveled about 140 miles and came into Kemper county, where I am now. The weather being rainy, and the waters high, we commenced preaching the everlasting gospel. Large congregations turned out to hear and many soon began to believe. The waters still continued high and I continued to preach in this and adjoining counties, until I, with the help of my brethren, have succeeded in organizing two branches of the church consisting of 6 and 7 members. The spirit of the Lord has been poured out, and some have spoken in tongues while others have rejoiced in the blessings of the new and everlasting covenant. I have not yet been to Alabama; the waters have continued so high that it has been impossible to get there. it happened pretty much by chance, a few days ago, that I got hold of one of the late numbers of the Times and Seasons, in which I discovered an article on the necessity of a more extensive spread of your very valuable paper, upon which I determined to use what influence I could in that way, and feel still determined, with the help of the Lord to be the means in the hands of God of spreading this work as far as I can, both by preaching and obtaining subscribers for both the Times and Seasons and Neighbor.-Brother S. Gully, the bearer of this, will hand
in the names of some ten or twelve subscribers, with the pay. The brethren here have subscribed liberally for the papers, in a general way.
I have seen many ups and downs in this world since I first heard the gospel by your mouth; but the circumstances which transpired in those days are still fresh in my mind and well do I remember the many times that I repaired to the silent grove and poured out my soul in mighty prayer to God, that I might receive authority as a minister of Jesus Christ, and little did I realize the importance of the calling. But I chose it, not because I was eloquent, not because I was learned, nor yet because I was desirous of obtaining vain glory; but because I could not bare [bear] the idea of God's people being gathered and not to have a hand in it; believing that God was able out of weakness to bring strength and with weak and foolish things to bring to naught the strong and wise in the things of this world.
May the Lord, in his mercy, direct me in all things that I may follow the spirit of truth and the council of the church of Latter-Day Saints.
Pray for me that the Lord may bless me and keep me in the right way. Write to me, if you please, and give me such instructions as I need, and you will confer a great favor on me.
I am your brother in the bonds of the new and everlasting covenant,
BENJAMIN L. CLAPP.
To the Editor of the Times and Seasons.
Nauvoo, Feb., 28th, 1844.
DEAR SIR:-Information came to me recently, through a letter written by brother Reid and Holt, Rutherford county, Tenn., giving an account of an imposition practiced upon them and others of the same branch, by an impostor who came into that branch about the 15th of November last, professing to be an elder of this church, calling his name Lorenzo Hodges. He preached a number of discourses in that vicinity; telling them that he was wounded in the Missouri difficulties, and was unable to travel on foot; and that he left Nauvoo with a good horse and saddle, but being solicited to stop at a campmeeting, had his horse stolen; he could not proceed further on his mission without assistance. The branch, ignorant of his designs, and wishing to advance the cause of righteousness, readily fitted him out with a horse, saddle, bridle and martingils [martingales], worth at least one hundred dollars, which he took to use until he should return to Nauvoo, there he was to deliver up said property to the Temple committee, to be applied on their tithing. He started to visit the different branches of the church, with a promise of returning; left several appointments to preach, but has not as yet been heard of by them; and from the best information that I can gather, has gone to Texas. He is known in this city by the name of Curtis L. Hodges.
The matter contained in this communication is at your option.
JOHN D. LEE.
AN ACROSTIC ON THE GREAT MORMON PROPHET.
Jehovah's voice let every nation hear! Hold fast ye saints, and keep your eyes on heav'n-
On mighty winds, his chariot wheels doth roll!! 'Ere long you'll hear the mighty trumpet sound!
Sing loud his praise, and let the heathen fea[fear] Woe to the men who are not then forgiv'n
Earth tremble-heaven inspire the holy soul Each cries for pardon, when it can't be found.
Proclaim his will as now to me tis' given See cloud on cloud in august grandeur roll!
Heaven's last direction in the way to heaven! To judgment come, to judgment every soul!!
The Spirit cries to my standard, come, Earths mighty mountains then shall disappear-
Haste all ye pilgrims,-fill our fertile plains Rivers and seas to mingled blood shall turn,
Enlarge our borders,-find us a home, Night's awful reign is now approaching near,
Gain peace and joy, where heavenly pleasure reigns! Each saint rejoices while the wicked mourn!
Reject the creeds, that long have kept you bound, 'Midst flaming worlds, thy servants God of Love,
Enter our sanctum Nauvoo's holy ground. Pass on unharmed, to glorious realms above!
Attend ye nations to his great command! In Christ believe and God who dwells on high;
The time is now when men must rise or fall, Repent and pray your sins may be forgiven;
Proclaim his will-the judgment's near at hand! Escape the death that's never doomed to die,
Regain your freedom and obey this call- On wings of faith your souls shall soar to heaven-
On Zion's shore doth hope and virtue dwell,
Peace to the righteous that no tongue can tell!
Hosanna to the Lord who guards our host-
Encamped with gospel armour purely bright,
'Tis with the sword of truth we conquer most,
Our foes shall perish, when they dare to fight.
Fierce bigots with their creeds dare not contend,
They fall beneath the truth and find their end.
Farewell to earth-now joys immortal rise,
Sing loud hosanna's as you mount the skies.
Almighty power! protect our little band,
Increase our faith, our virtue and our love,
Nor let our foes e'er get the upper hand,
To drive our people from their chosen land-
Surround us with a HALO from above.
Minutes of a conference of the elders of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, held at Tuscaloosa Co., Ala., on the 10th of February, 1844.
Conference met according to previous appointment, and organised [organized] by calling elder John Brown to the chair, and appointing George W. Stewart clerk; after which a hymn was sung, and the throne of grace addressed by the president
Resolved, That the clerk take the names of all the official members present, which were as follows:
Of the Seventy, H. W. Church.
Elders, John Brown, Wm. Stewart, Joseph Turnlow, Zimri Kitchens, George W. Stewart, Wm. Matthews.
Priest, Augustus Skinner.
Teacher, William Townsend.
Deacons, James Skinner and James Turnlow.
Representation of branches:-Cypry branch, represented by William Steward, consists of 57 members, five elders, one priest, one teacher, and one deacon.
Boguechetto branch, represented by James Turnlow, consists of 43 members, two elders, one teacher, and one deacon.
Buttehalchy branch, represented by William Matthews, consists of 23 members, two elders, one priest, one teacher, and one deacon.
Resolved, That the saints uphold the presidency by their prayers.
Resolved, That the president and clerk transcribe these minutes after their true meaning, and forward them to the editor of the Times and Seasons, requesting them to be published.
JOHN BROWN, Pres't.
Geo. W. Stewart, Clerk.
From the Southern Reformer.
The last of the csurse [course?] of Mr. Gliddon's lectures on Ancient Egypt was delivered before the Lowell institute of Boston on Friday evening. It was (says the Transcript) on the "The cubit," and existence of a perfect system of authentic measures in Egypt in the times before the pyramids, and, as he thought, even prior to the days of mathematical Science-coeval with the hand of our first father Adam!
"The primitive sources of all ancient or modern metrical systems were application of different members of the human body; the hand and the foot, in whole or in part, gave origin to all our ideas of length. Mr. Gliddon said that the adoption of the hands and feet as measures had probably been taught by Mizraim to his Egyptian children, more than 1,000 years before Cadmus, or 2,000 years before Romulus, with reference to Greece and Rome. In fact, like the art of writing, (which in his public characters, the lecturer shows to have existed before Noah) he carries the cubit also back into antediluvian periods quoting the command in the 5th verse of the 6th chapter of Genesis, with reference to the ark of "Gophir [gopher] wood." And this is the fashion which thou shalt make it of; length of the ark shall be 300 cubits, the breadth of it 50 cubits, and the height of it 30 cubits.
"Gliddon proceeded to show the cubit in the hieroglyphical writings, and its phonetic sign with regard to the cubit, or human arm from elbow to end of middle finger; and also its existence in the modern Coptic and Hebrew language, as derived from Egyptian pictorial [pictorial] symbol. The Egyptians had two cubits-the royal and the common. An arm, or common cubit, is exactly two spans of the hand, of six handsbreadth or palms, or twenty-four digits; and thus we have the cubits. The royal cubit is an arm and one palm.
The lecturer presented a "facsimile" of an ancient Egyptian mason's rule, the original of which was found among the ruins of the Propylea of Karnac. One of the pylons (or gateways) had been erected by Pharoah Hor, of the 18th dynasty, B. C. 1661; and during the process of some workmen who (after the outer-casing, by the Pasha's orders, had been blown off with gunpowder, in 1839) were employed to remove some of the interior blocks, a seeming stick was picked up by an Arab laborer. This had fallen between the stones on the first building of the structure, and being covered up with masonry, had remained where it first fell 3,500 years before.
"A French gentleman Mons. Prisse, an eminent hierologist and professional architect, then residing at Thebes, was present, and found it to be a mason's rule, marked off into divisions and subdivisions. He purchased the useful relic, and, having shown it to many a scientific gentleman, he ceded it to A. C. Harris, esq. of Alexandria, in whose collection it now is. Mr. Gliddon exhibited a precise copy of this measnre [measure], its exactly length being three feet five inches and three-tenths, divided into fourteen compartments, with subdivisions. With this rule he illustrated the application of the human hand in measuring, suiting the action of his statements, and introducing many calculations and ad-measurements, impossible for us to attempt here to transcribe, and rendered more interesting
by oral applications than they could be in a dry printed detail. Mr. Gliddon observed that the Egyptian cubit corresponds to the dimensions of the Tabernical [Tabernacle] of Moses. He showed that it was the cubit of Solomon, on the first construction of the Temple, B. C. 1012; and he quoted Ezekiel xl. 5, and xliii. 13, to establish the identity of the Egyptian cubits of 1661, or rather prior to B. C. 2500, from the pyramids(with which these cubits correspond!) with Ezekiel's two cubits B. C. 535, on the second erection of the Temple. He showed that bishop Cumberland is wrong in his estimates of Hebrew cubits, as he confounds the cubit of seven palms with the cubit of six palms. He also showed the perfect analogy between the Arab cubit or arm, 4300 years ago; exemplifying his subject with the modern Italian, Greek, and Turkish correspondences. He referred besides to other ancient cubits in Europe and Egypt.
"Having proved the propriety of the Egyptians and the Hebrews with regard to the cubit, the lecturer fully showed what he termed 'the plagiarisms of Greece and Rome,' and how the hand applied to their measures, as in everything else, the Greeks and Romans are 'the mere children of the venerable and profound Egyptians, and that we are their grand-children.'
For the Times and Seasons.
TO MRS. MARY PRATT
ON THE DEATH OF HER LITTLE SON.
BY MISS E. R. SNOW.
Time with an arrows speed has gone That flow'r beneath the vernal skies
Since I beheld a blooming flower, Will bloom. Ere long the trumpet's sound
As fresh as summer morning's dawn- Will hide your sleeping cherub rise.
Its beauty grac'd the vernal bow'r.
Twas lovely, and its op'ning bloom, How was that lov'd, departed one
A joy inspiring halo spread; Endear'd by scenes of deep distress!
And rich as Eden's first perfume Missouri's prison walls have known
Was the sweet fragrance which it shed. Its infant cry-your fond caress:
When in your arms with tenderness
Such was your little one; and more You bore it to the wretched cell;
Than rosy beauty grac'd its air- That with your presence you might bless
A higher charm its features bore- The heart of him you love so well.
A noble intellect was there,
With fondest hopes, from earliest hour But hush the sorrows of thy breast,
You saw its mind, a royal gem, And wait the promise of the Lord,
Expand with reason's genial pow'r To usher in a day of rest,
To form a future diadem. When all will be again restored,
Although a tender branch is torn
But oh! a frost has nip'd the flow'r, Asunder from the parent tree;
And all its loveliness is gone! Back to the trunk it shall be borne,
A hand unseen with ghastly pow'r And grafted for eternity.
Has laid full low, your little one! Morely settlement, Jan. 17th, 1844.
But soon, by nature's annual round
The Times and Seasons,
Is Printed and Published about the first and fifteenth of every month, on the corner of Water and Bain Streets, Nauvoo, Illinois, by JOHN TAYLOR.
EDITOR AND PROPRIETOR.
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 John Taylor, editor, POST PAID, or they will not receive attention.
Previous chapter Table of Contents Next chapter