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Times and Seasons/5/3
Times and Seasons: Volume 5, Number 3
Summary:Source document in Mormon Publications: 19th and 20th Centuries online archive: Times and Seasons Vol. 5
Times and Seasons: Volume 5, Number 3
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- HISTORY OF JOSEPH SMITH.
- TO THE HONORABLE, THE SENATE AND HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF PENNSYLVANIA, IN LEGISLATIVE CAPACITY ASSEMBLED.
- THE GATHERING.
|TIMES AND SEASONS
|"TRUTH WILL PREVAIL"
|Volume V. No. 3.]
|CITY OF NAUVOO, ILL. FEB. l , 1844.
|[Whole No. 87.
HISTORY OF JOSEPH SMITH.
Not long after the foregoing was received, and the saints from the state of New York began to come on, and it seemed necessary to settle them; at the solicitation of bishop Partridge, I inquired and received the following revelation.
Revelation given May 1831.
Hearken unto me, saith the Lord your God, and I will speak unto my servant Edward Partridge, and give unto him directions: for it must needs be that he receive directions how to organize this people: for it must needs be that they are organized according to my laws, if otherwise they will be cut off: wherefore let my servant Edward Partridge, and those whom he has chosen, in whom I am well pleased, appoint unto this people their portion, every man equal according to their families, according to their circumstances, and their wants and needs; and let my servant Edward Partridge, when he shall appoint a man his portion, give unto him a writing that shall secure unto him his portion, that he shall hold it, even this right and this inheritance in the church, until he transgresses and is not accounted worthy by the voice of the church, according to the laws and covenants of the church, to belong to the church: and if he shall transgress, and is not accounted worthy to belong in the church, he shall not have power to claim that portion which he has consecrated unto the bishop for the poor and the needy of my church: therefore, he shall not retain the gift, but shall only have claim on that portion that is deeded unto him. And thus, all things shall be made sure according to the laws of the land.
And let that which belongs to this people, be appointed unto this people; and the money which is left unto this people, let there be an agent appointed unto this people, to take the money to provide food and raiment, according to the wants of this people. And let every man deal honestly, and be alike among this people, and receive alike, that ye may be one, even as I have commanded you.
And let that which belongeth to this people not be taken and given unto that of another church; wherefore if another church would receive money of this church, let them pay unto this church again according as they shall agree-and this shall be done through the bishop or the agent, which shall be appointed by the voice of the church.
And again, let the bishop appoint a storehouse unto this church, and let all things, both in money and in meat, which is more than is needful for the want of this people, be kept in the hands of the bishop. And let him also reserve unto himself, for his own wants, and for the wants of his family, as he shall be employed in doing this business. And thus I grant unto this people a privilege of organizing themselves according to my laws: and I consecrate unto them this land for a little season, until I the Lord shall provide for them otherwise, and command them to go hence; and the hour and the day is not given unto them: wherefore let them act upon this land as for years;-and this shall turn unto them for their good.
Behold, this shall be an example unto my servant Edward Partridge, in other places, in all churches. And whoso is found a faithful, a just and a wise steward, shall inherit eternal life.-Verily I say unto you, I am Jesus Christ, who cometh quickly, in an hour you think not;-even so: Amen.
On the 6th of June, the elders from the various parts of the country where they were laboring came in, and the conference before appointed, convened, in Kirtland, and the Lord displayed his power in a manner that could not be mistaken. The man of sin was revealed, and the authority of the Melchisedec priesthood was manifested, and conferred for the first time upon several of the elders. It was clearly evident that the Lord gave us power in proportion to the work to be done, and strength according to the race set before us; and grace and help as our needs required. Great harmony prevailed; several were ordained; faith was strengthened; and humility, so necessary for the blessing of God to follow prayer, characterized the saints. The next day as a kind continuation of this great work of the last days, I received the following
Revelation, given June 1831.
Behold, thus saith the Lord unto the elders whom he hath called and chosen, in these last days, by the voice of his Spirit, saying, I the Lord will make known unto you what I will that ye shall do from this time until the next conference, which shall be held in Missouri, upon the land which I will consecrate unto my people, who are a remnant of Jacob, and those who are heirs according to the covenant.
Wherefore, verily I say unto you, let my servant Joseph Smith, jr. and Sidney Rigdon take their journey as soon as preparations can be made to leave their homes, and journey to the land of Missouri. And inasmuch as they are faithful unto me, it shall be made known unto them what they shall do; and it shall also, inasmuch as they are faithful, be made known unto them the land of your inheritance. And inasmuch as they are not faithful, they shall be cut off, even as I will, as seemeth me good.
And again, verily I say unto you, let my servant Lyman Wight, and my servant John Corrill take their journey speedily: and also my servant John Murdock:, and my servant Hyrum Smith, take their journey unto the same place by the way of Detroit. And let them journey from thence preaching the word by the way, saying none other things than that which the prophets and apostles have written, and that which is taught them by the comforter, through the prayer of faith. Let them go two by two, and thus let them preach by the way in every congregation, baptizing by water, and the laying on of hands by the water's side: for thus saith the Lord, I will cut my work short in righteousness: for the days cometh that I will send forth judgement [judgment] unto victory. And tell my servant Lyman Wight beware, for satan desireth to sift him as chaff.
And behold, he that is faithful shall be made ruler over many things. And again, I will give unto you a pattern in all things, that ye may not be deceived, for satan is abroad in the land, and he goeth forth deceiving the nations: wherefore he that prayeth whose spirit is contrite, the same is accepted of me, if he obey mine ordinances: he that speaketh, whose spirit is contrite, whose language is meek, and edifieth, the same is of God, if he obey mine ordinances. And again he that under my power, shall be made strong, and shall bring forth fruits of praise, and wisdom, according to the revelations, and truths which I have given you.
And again, he that is overcome and bringeth not forth fruits, even according to the pattern, is not of me; wherefore by this pattern ye shall know the spirits in all cases, under the the whole heavens. And the days have come, according to men's faith it shall be done unto them. Behold this commandment is given unto all the elders whom I have chosen. And again, verily I say unto you, let my servant Thomas B. Marsh, and my servant Ezra Thayre, take their journey also, preaching the word by the way, unto this same land. And again let my servant Isaac Morely, and my servant Ezra Booth, take their journey, also preaching the word by the way unto the same land.
And again, let my servants Edward Partridge and Martin Harris, take their journey with my servant Sidney Rigdon and Joseph Smith, jr. Let my servants David Whitmer and Harvy Whitlock, also take their journey, and preach by the way unto this same land. Let my servants Parley P. Pratt and Orson Pratt take their journey, and preach by the way, even unto this same land. And let my servants Solomon Hancock and Simeon Carter also take their journey unto this same land, and preach by the way. Let my servant Edson Fuller and Jacob Scott also take their journey. Let my servants Levi Hancock and Zebedee Coltrin also take their journey. Let my servants Reynolds Calhoon and Samuel H. Smith also take their journey. Let my servants Wheeler Baldwin and William Carter also take their journey.
And let my servants Newel Knight and Selah J. Griffin, both be ordained and also take their journey: yea, verily I say, let all these take their journey into one place, in their several courses, and one man shall not build upon another's foundation, neither journey in another's track. He that is faithful, the same shall be kept and blessed with much fruit.
And again, I say unto you, let my servants Joseph Wakefield and Solomon Humphrey take their journey into the eastern lands. Let them labor with their families, declaring none other things than the prophets and apostles, that which they have seen, and heard, and most assuredly believe, that the prophesies may be fulfilled. In consequence of transgression, let that which was bestowed upon Heman Bassett, be taken from him, and placed upon the head of Simonds Rider.
And again, verily I say unto you, let Jared Carter be ordained a priest, and also George James be ordained a priest. Let the residue of the elders watch over the churches, and declare the word in the regions among them. And let them labor with their own hands, that there be no idolatry nor wickedness practiced. And remember in all things, the poor and the needy, the sick and afflicted, for he that doeth not these things, the same is not my disciple.
And again let my servants Joseph Smith, jr. and Sidney Rigdon and Edward Partridge, take with them a recommend from the church. And let there be one obtained for my servant Oliver Cowdry also: and thus, even as I have said, if ye are faithful, ye shall assemble yourselves together to rejoice upon the land of Missouri, which is the land of your inheritance, which is now the land of your enemies. But behold I the Lord will hasten the city in its
time, and will crown the faithful with joy and with rejoicing. Behold I am Jesus Christ the Son of God, and I will lift them up at the last day; even so. Amen.
TO THE HONORABLE, THE SENATE AND HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF PENNSYLVANIA, IN LEGISLATIVE CAPACITY ASSEMBLED.
Your memoralist, a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, and now an exile in the state of Illinois, begs leave, most respectfully to represent to your honorable body, that he was born in the state of Pennsylvania, on the 19th of February, A. D. 1793, in Alleghany county, and township of St. Clair, that he continued his permanent residence in said state until the year 1826, when he moved to the state of Ohio. In 1831, he went into the state of Missouri, and in connexion with other members of said Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, became the owner of real estate in the county of Jackson, in said state: but by reason of the violence of a formidable mob, and the unwillingness of the authorities of Missouri to protect your memorialist, and those connected with him, in the possession of their rights, they were forbidden the privilege of enjoying their property, or receiving any benefit therefrom; that in the month of April, 1838, your memorialist moved with his family into the state of Missouri, into Caldwell county, and became owner of real estate in the said county of Caldwell, without however being privileged to enjoy the benefit of his lands in Jackson county. All the lands owned by your memorialist and his brethren, in Jackson county, were purchased from the United States, for which payment had been made in full; the benefits of which payment the United States now enjoy, and has ever since the purchase. There had large numbers of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints settled in Caldwell county, at the time your memorialist went into that county, as also in Davies county, in said state. We commenced building houses, and improving our lands; building mills and other machinery, for our mutual benefit; quietly and peaceably enjoying our new homes, and using much industry and economy, to render the desolate waste, whither we had been driven, a pleasant habitation for man. The toils of the day, were followed by the sound of the hammer, the noise of the plane, and the hum of the wheel, at night. Day and night all was bustle, all was stir; every hour of the day, and many of the night, brought forth the fruits of industry, for the benefit of the settlers, and added additional improvement, beauty and comfort to our new homes. Our social circles, however, were not unfrequently [infrequently] disturbed by the tears and sobbings of some disconsolate widow, or the weeping of some bereaved orphan, bewailing the loss of a husband or a father, who had fallen a victim to the violence of the Jackson and Clay county mobs. Jackson county was the place of our choice, and nothing but violence could have caused our people to leave it. Their hearts were set upon it, and all their feelings associated with that place, as the future home of themselves and their posterity. The location in Caldwell and Davies counties, was only made by our people, by reason of violence and lawless outrages committed upon them. It was always received by us as a place of exile, and not of choice, and in dispite [spite] of all our efforts at cheerfulness, at times, the mind would be almost overwhelmed with melancholy, and we would say in our hearts, and often with our lips, 'what availeth us that our ancestors bled. and our fathers fought for liberty, while we are as captives in a strange land?' and like Israel along the streams of Babylon, we would be almost ready to hang our harps on the willows, and refuse to sing the song of Zion. O where is the patrimony our fathers bequeathed to us? Where is the liberty they purchased with their blood? Fled! alas fled!! but we hope not forever.
But the wants of our families would dissipate our feelings; we would engage in the labors of the day, and the toils of the night, with untiring perseverance, and struggle with all the powers of both mind and body, to render our families comfortable, and make our homes pleasant. But alas! this privilege was not allowed us. Our quiet industry, and untiring perseverance soon awakened the jealousy of our enemies, and the cry went forth, that if the Mormons (as they called us) were let alone, Caldwell county would, in five years, be the most wealthy and populous county in the state. This our enemies could not endure; and a regular system of mobocracy, of violence, and plunder, was formed to check us in our course to wealth and greatness, as our enemies supposed: and, indeed, they had some reason to think so; for an extent of improvement had been made in this remote and wild region, in the space of a few months, which had no parlallel [parallel] in the history of our western settlements, and I strongly doubt whether any where else.
This banditti of marauders increased in numbers and violence, until by device and stratagem, duplicity and falsehood, they got the authorities of the state to interfere, and aid them in their diabolical purposes; and the then Governor
of the state, Lilburn W. Boggs, actually sent a large military force into the county, with orders to exterminate us and confiscate our property; or such was the authority the commanders of the military array claimed, by virtue of the order received from the governor.-Suffice it to say, that our settlements were broken up, our towns plundered, our farms laid waste, our crops ruined, our flocks and herds either killed or driven away, our houses rifled, our goods, money. clothing, provisions and all we had, carried away; men were shot down like wild beasts, or had their brains dashed out: women were insulted and ravished, until they died in the hands of their destroyers. Children were killed, while pleading for their lives. All intreaties [entreaties] were vain and fruitless; men, women and children, alike, fell victims to the violence and cruelty of these ruffians. Men moving into the county with their families, were shot down; their waggons, [wagons] teams and loading, taken by the plunderers as booty, and their wives, with their little ones, ordered out of the state forthwith, or suffer death, as had their husbands; leaving them no means of conveyance but their feet, and no means of subsistance [subsistence] but begging. Soldiers of the revolution were slain in the most brutal manner while pleading for their lives, in the name of American citizens. Many were thrown into prison to endure the insults of a mock trial, that would have disgraced an inquisition. This last part of the scene, was doubtless designed to make the distant public believe, that there was some excuse for all this outrage and violence. Among the number of those cast into prison, was your young memorialist, who had to endure four months imprisonment, part of the time in chains.
To give your honorable body a correct idea of the origin of these scenes of cruelty and woe, we will here transcribe the preamble to a set of resolutions passed by these plunderers, at their first meeting held in Jackson county, for the purpose of taking measures for the expulsion of our people from that county. It is as follows:
"We the undersigned, citizens of Jackson county, believing that an important crisis is at hand, as regards our civil society, in consequence of a pretended religious society of people that have settled and are still settling in our county, styling themselves Mormons; and intending as we do, to rid our society, peaceably if we can, forcibly if we must, and believing as we do, that the arm of the civil law does not afford us a guarantee, or at least, a sufficient one against the evils which are now inflicted on us, and seem to be increasing by the said religious sect, deem it expedient and if the highest importance to form ourselves into a company for the better and easier accomplishment of our purpose, which we deem it almost superfluous to say, is justified as well by the law of nature, as by the law of self defence [defense]."
Your honorable body will see by the above, that the reason assigned for the formation of the company (and this was the first that was formed,) was the want of power in the civil law to enable them to effect their object. Hear their own words-'And believing as we do, that the arm of civil law does not afford us a guarantee, or at least a sufficient one against the evils which are now inflicted upon us.' What were the evils complained of? Strange must be the answer, themselves being judges; the existence of a religious society among them; a society too against which even envy and malice themselves could not find an accusation, or ferret out a lawless impropriety, or one act which the lawless recognized as crime. For, says the complainants, we form ourselves into a company, because the laws do not provide for the evils which afflict us; or this in effect is what they say. If any individual or individuals of said society, or the society as a body, had transgressed the laws, had not the state power to lawfully inflict the punishment due to said offence [offense]? The sequel shows they had. What are the facts of the case, our enemies being the judges themselves? They are, that our people had so deported themselves, as to be justified by the laws; claiming no right but such as the laws guaranteed; exercising no power beyond the limits set for them by the laws of the country; and this was the reason why our enemies formed themselves into a company for our expulsion, or at least, they so say. If our people had been transgressors of the laws, no need then for the people of Jackson county to form themselves into a company to drive us from our homes; they could have done this lawfully; no need of a companys' [companies?] being formed, all could have been done without, that humanity could have demanded.
By virtue then of the unholy determination, as stated above, our people were attacked, indiscriminately, men women and children: their houses were rifled; the inmates driven out into open fields or wild prairies; their farms desolated; their crops all destroyed; their goods, and chattels carried off or otherwise destroyed; men were caught, tied up, whipped, until some died in their hands, others had to tie handkerchiefs round their bodies to keep their bowels from falling out: others were shot down; their wives and little ones driven from their habitation! and this often in the night, having nothing but their night clothes on; their
houses would be set on fire, and all consumed, leaving hundreds of women and little children thus destitute and naked. wandering bare-footed and nearly naked, in the darkness of the night and dead of winter, in the fields and open prairies, without any covering but the heavens, or any bed but the earth; and their condition so terrible that they might be followed by their blood, which flowed from their lacerated and bleeding feet. Females in this heart rending condition, gave birth to children, in the open air, and exposed to the inclemencies [inclemency's] of the winter. The consequences were that many sickened and many died. And if we ask, why all this abuse? the answer must be, because the people had not transgressed the laws; if they had, their persecutors would have punished them by the laws: but they had not done it, and for this cause they must suffer all the cruelties which the most inhuman barbarity could invent. The lands which your memorialist and his brethren had purchased from the general government, and on which large improvements were made, were thus taken possession of by our persecutors, and the same are held by them till this day, and we are forbid the privilege of enjoying them or any benefit arising from them, I mean the lands in Jackson County.
After wandering about for a length of time, those that were thus unlawfully deprived of their earthly all and cruelly driven from their homes, got into Clay county in said state of Missouri; and again began to get homes; but in a short time, the same scenes began to be acted in Clay, as had been in Jackson county, and the people were again driven, and got into Caldwell or what was afterwards Caldwell county, and into Davies county, or a large majority of them, and here again purchased lands from the general government.
To give your honourable [honorable] body a correct idea of how those who had been thus driven and stripped of their all, were enabled again to purchase, it is only necessary to say, that there was a constant emigration into the country of the members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; many of those had money, and they loaned part of what they had to those who had none, and enabled them to purchase homes. The land soon began to rise in value, and the first purchasers were enabled to sell part of what they had purchased for enough to pay for the whole, and save themselves a home: some more and some less. There were few, if any who did not in this way get homes, but were privileged only a very short time to enjoy them. We were followed into Caldwell and Davies counties, by the same relentless spirit, and by the same persecutors who had desolated our people in Jackson county, under the command of Major General Lucas, of Independence, Jackson county seat of the first mob, and the place where the first company was formed for our destruction. He was joined on his way hither by many of other counties, and invaded our towns and settlements, laid all waste and drove us into exile.
Lilburn W. Boggs, who was Lieutenant Governer [Governor] of the state, when the persecution first commeuced [commenced], and one of the principal actors in the persecution, was now (l838) Governor of the state, and used his executive influence to have us all massacred or driven into exile; again taking all we had, and holds it till this day; and all this because we were not lawless and disobedient. For if the laws had given them a sufficient guarantee against the evils complained of by the existence of our religious society among them, then would they have had recourse to the laws. If we had been transgressors of law, our houses would not have been rifled, our women ravished, our farms desolated, and our goods and chattels destroyed; our men killed, our wives and children driven into the the prairies, and made to suffer the indignities that the most brutal barbarity could inflict, but would only have had to suffer that which the laws would inflict, which were founded in justice, framed in righteousness and administered in humanity. But scourged by this banditti, without the forms of law, and according to their own declaration, in violation of all law, or the principles of humanity, we were doomed to suffer all kinds of cruelty which barbarity or inhumanity could invent. And they have gravely told the world that they deem it almost superfluous to say that their cause was justified, as well by the law of nature as by the law of self defence [defense]. Now, in the name of all humanity, what law of nature justified, or law of self defence [defense] required the infliction of such shameless cruelties? In so saying they show most assuredly but very little respect to the intelligence of humanity of American citizens, and in the eyes of the civilized world have cast a shade, and a dark one too, on the character of the sons of a noble ancestry, for they have virtually said that Americans look upon such cruelties as the acts of virtue and the fatherly chastisements of humanity.
During the whole progress of those scenes of cruelty, from the beginning, we petitioned the authorities of Missouri for protection and redress. In the name of American citizens, we appealed to their patriotism, to their justice, to their humanity, and to their sacred honors; but they were deaf to our entreaties, and lent a listless ear to our petitions. All attempts at
redress or protection were vain, and they heeded us not, until we were exiles in a strange land, though one (and to its honor be it spoken) where we found both friends and a home. But since our residence in Illinois, Missouri has followed us with the same relentless spirit of persecution. Warrants have been sent by the governor of Missouri to the governor of Illinois, demanding the body of your memorialist, and a number of others; for that of Joseph Smith three several warrants have been sent, all of which have been set aside by the legal authorities of Illinois; and yet they cease not their persecution. Our people are kidnapped, and carried into Missouri, and there are insulted and whipped (as many have been) and cast into prison, and left to get out as they could. All this without the forms of trial. Missouri is by these brutal means endeavouring to make the public think that they have cause for this barbarity. But, let me ask your honorable body, what excuse can be pled for such inhuman barbarity and brutal recklessness? Let me further ask the attention of your honorable body to the fact, that all the before described outrages were committed by a body of men calling themselves militia, called out by order of the governor for the professed object of seeing that the laws were kept, and their supremacy maintained. Such was their pretended object, and under this cover they put at defiance the laws of both God and man; of nature, humanity, and decency; and in these unhallowed abuses of all the laws of civilized society in the world, they were upheld by the authorities of the state, and actually paid by the state, for committing theft, robbery, rapine, violence rape, and murder, with innumerable cruelties, painful to mention. And when we made application to the authorities for redress, we were insulted instead of receiving common civilities. The constitution of the United States provides, that the United States shall give to each state a republican form of government. Is it a republican form of government where such outrages can be committed in the face of the authorities, and yet no redress can be had; where all law is suspended to give place to cruelty, barbarity, and inhumanity? Let your honorable body answer.
Her statesmen in the national councils may attempt to plead excuses for these diabolical outrages, but all they can do is stamp infamy on their own characters, and engrave disgrace on the urn that contains their ashes after they sleep. What, I ask your honorable body, can be pled in extenuation of crimes so barbarous, cruelties so infamous, and outrages so violent. What crime can any man commit, it matters not how flagrant, which can, according to the laws of the civilized world, subject his wife to insult, his daughters to rape, his property to public plunder, his children to starvation, and himself and family to exile. The very character of the outrage is all the testimony I think your honorable body can ask-that it was without provocation on the part of the sufferers; for if there had been provocation then would the transgressors have had to suffer the penalty of broken laws, but their punishment-if such it can be called-was not the penalty inflicted for the breach of any law, for no law in existence knows such a penalty or penalties. Why then all this cruelty? Answer, because the people had violated no law; nor prevented from exercising the rights, which they, (according to the laws,) enjoyed, and had a right to be protected in, in any state in the union.
Being refused redress by the authorities of Missouri, to whom shall your memorialist look? He answers, to the people of his native state, and through them to the general government, and where can he look with more confidence, than to the patriots of Pennsylvania, the state of his nativity, and the place of the sepulchers of his fathers. Yes, your memorialist says in his heart, "I will tell you my wrongs and grievances and that of my brethren, in Pennsylvania; I will publish them in the streets, high ways and high places of the 'Key Stone State,' that her statesmen may plead the cause of suffering innocence in the halls of the National Legislature; her matrons may arise in the strength of patriotism; her fair ones in virtuous indignation, and their united voices cease not, until the cause of the innocent shall be heard, and their most sacred rights restored." To your honorable body then, the representatives of the people of his native state, your memorialist utters his complaining voice; to you he tells the tale of his wrongs, and his woes, and that of his brethren, and appeals to your honorable body, as one of Pennsylvania's native sons, and asks you in the name of all that is patriotic, republican and honorable, to instruct the whole delegation of Pennsylvania in congress, to use all lawful and constitutional means to obtain for us redress for our wrongs and losses. Believing as your memorialist does, that the general government has not only the power to act in the premises, but are bound by every sacred obligation by which American citizens are bound to one another, in our national compact, to see that no injury is inflicted without redress being made.
Weak indeed must be our republican institutions, and as contemptible our national capacity,
if it is a fact, that American citizens, after having purchased lands from the government, and received the government guarantee to be protected in the enjoyment of them, they can be lawlessly and causelessly driven off by violence and cruelty, and yet the government have no power to protect them, or redress their wrongs. Tell not this in Pennsylvania, publish it not in the streets of Harrisburg, for surely, the sons of the 'Key Stone State' will feel themselves insulted.
Well may the nations of the old world ridicule the weakness, and impotency of our free institutions, a government not able to protect its own citizens! A government, it must be famous indeed in the annals of history, and a pattern to the world, which is so governed as to admit the most flagrant abuses known to the civilized world, and acknowledged by all to be such; and yet no power to redress them. Hear it O ye barbarians! Listen to it O ye savages!! and hasten, yea hasten all of you to America; there you can glut your avarice by plunder, and riot in the blood of innocence, till you are satisfied, and the government has no power to restrain, nor strength to punish, nor yet ability to redress the sufferers at your hands.
From the acquaintance which your memorialist has with the history of his native state, he has been induced to make his appeal to your honored body-a state whose people are noted for their civic virtues and zealous attachment to the principles of civil and religious liberty; a people venerable from the beginning of our national existence; whose virtuous efforts to the sacred principles of freedom, religious, civil, and political, have obtained for themselves imperishable laurels in the history of our country's glory; a people whose colonial organization was based upon the holy principles of equal rights and equal privileges; a people whose national escutcheon has never been stained with the martyrs blood; a state whose statesmen, divines and heroes, labored in the cabinet, the desk and the field, to secure, and hand down to their posterity, in all succeeding ages, the boon of heaven, the sacred rights of freemen.
It was in the honored metropolis of Pennsylvania, the seat of the first colonial congress, when the principles of liberty were matured, from whence emanated the voice of independence, whose echoes rolled and reverberated, till it reached the circumference of the colonial settlements, and inspired the sons of freedom, until there was but one voice heard: "Freedom or death." It was there when the leaders and heroes of the revolution, pledged their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honors, to each other, to be scourged by a tyrant's scepter no longer, until all they had, and all they were, were offered on the altar of freedom.
Not only were the principles of equal rights inscribed in legible characters on the flags which floated on her towers, in the incipient stages of our national existence, but they were engraven on the hearts of the people, with an impression which could not be obliterated. All who collected in her towers, or fought under her banners, could contend and fight for freedom only. Her teachers of religion, whose influence in the pulpit, and eloquence in public assemblies, wielded an overwhelming influence in the pulpit, and eloquence in public assemblies, wielded an overwhelming influence in forwarding the cause of liberty; did they use this influence in securing to themselves governmental patronage, or religious preferences? All acquainted with the history of the times answer no. They were citizens of Pennsylvania, and the immortal Penn had inscribed on every pot and bell in the colony, 'Civil and Religious liberty.' The patriotism of Pennsylvania's religious teachers was pure. They threw in their whole weight of character and influence to promote a cause which made others equal with themselves; for the glorious privilege of seeing a people free. Her heroes bore the horrors of war, not to sway the tyrant's scepter, or enjoy a lordling's wealth, but to found an assylum [asylum] for the oppressed, and prepare a land of freedom for the tyrant's slave.-Her statesmen, while in the councils of the nation, devoted all their wisdom and talents to establish a government where every man should be free; the slave liberated from bondage, and the colored African enjoy the rights of citizenship; all enjoying equal rights to speak, to act, to worship, peculiar privileges to none. Such were Pennsylvania's sons at the beginning; and surely their sons and successors must have degenerated, lamentably degenerated, from the purity and patriotism of their fathers and predecessors, if crimes and cruelties, such as your memorialist complains of, go unheeded and unregarded. Honorable regard for the people of my native state forbids the thought.
In confidence of the purity and patriotism of the representatives of the people of his native state, your memorialist comes to your honorable body, through this his winged messenger, to tell you that the altar which was erected by the blood of your ancestors, to civil and religious liberty, from whence ascended up the holy incense of pure patriotism and universal good will to man, into the presence of Jehovah, a savior of life, is thrown down and the worshipers thereat, have been driven away, or else they are laying slain at the place of the altar.-
He comes to tell your honorable body, that the temple your fathers erected to freedom, whither their sons assembled to hear her precepts and cherish her doctrines in their hearts, has been desecrated; its portals closed, so that those that go up hither, are forbidden to enter.
He comes to tell your honorable body, that the blood of the heroes and patriots of the revolution, who have been slain by wicked hands for enjoying their religious rights, the boon of heaven to man, has cried, and is crying in the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth [Sabbath], saying, 'redress, redress our wrongs, O Lord God of the whole earth.
He comes to tell your honorable body, that the dying groans of infant innocence, and the shrieks of insulted and abused females-and many of them widows of revolutionary patriots have ascended up into the ears of Omnipotence, and are registered in the archives of eternity, to be had in the day of retribution, as a testimony against the whole nation, unless their cries and groans are heard by the representatives of the people, and ample redress made, as far as the nation can make it, or else the wrath of the Almighty will come down in fury against the whole nation.
Under all these circumstances, your memorialist prays to be heard by your honorable body, touching all the matters of his memorial; and as a memorial will be presented to congress this session, for redress of our grievances, he prays yonr [your] honorable body will instruct the whole delegation of Pennsylvania, in both houses, to use all their influence in the national counsels, to have redress granted.
And, as in duty bound, your memorialist will ever pray.
SIDNEY RIGDON, P. M.
TIMES AND SEASONS.
CITY OF NAUVOO,
THURSDAY FEBRUARY 1, 1844.
As we have lately been credibly informed, that an Elder of the Church of Jesus Christ, of Latter-day Saints, by the name of Hyram Brown, has been preaching polygamy, and other false and corrupt doctrines, in the county of Lapeer, state of Michigan.
This is to notify him and the Church in general, that he has been cut off from the church, for his iniquity; and he is further notified to appear at the Special Conference, on the 6th of April next, to make answer to these charges.
Presidents of said church.
Jared and his brother, together with the families that were with them, and their several offsprings, were greatly blessed of God, for a length of time upon this continent; they prospered exceedingly. They were blessed with communion with the Lord, with revelations, visions, faith wisdom and in all temporal blessings they became a great people. But when they transgressed the laws of God, the cnrse [curse] of Jehovah fell upon them, and they were swept from the face of the earth, according to the word of the Lord.
Abraham was made use of, he was selected and chosen as a peculiar personage, to whom God would commit his laws and ordinances, and to his seed after him, and in order that he might accomplish his purposes, he gave unto him, the land of Canaan as his inheritance, that he might be selected and set apart from all other nations; and this was the only principle upon which God could teach him his law, and establish the priesthood. It is true, that Abraham obtained it by faith, but then if he had not possessed faith, he would not have been a fit personage for the Lord to select, through whom he could communicate his will, and preserve a chosen seed upon the earth. Abraham, through a long train of afflictions, and in many trials, had proven his unflinching integrity and faithfulness to God, for many years, and when the Lord saw that he was a proper person to exalt, he said unto him, 'get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew [show] thee, and I will make of thee a great nation and I will bless thee, and curse them that curse thee, and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.' And when Abraham had journeyed to the place appointed, 'the Lord appeared unto him and said, unto thy seed will I give this land,' and he afterwards entered into a covenant with Abraham, saying, 'unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates. The Kenites, and the Kennizites, and Kadmonites, and the Hittites, and the Perrizites, and the Rophaines, and the Ammorites, and the Canaanites, and the Girgashites, and the Jebusites.'
That land was given unto Abraham, and unto his seed, for an everlasting inheritance, and 'Isaac, and Jacob were heirs with him, of the same promise.' The land was alotted [allotted] unto the
Twelve tribes of Israel, but in consequence of their iniquities, they were afterwards driven from it, and scattered upon the face of all the earth. Previous to their scattering, the Lord made provisions for the preservation of a remnant, upon this continent, that he might preserve a pure seed unto himself; and Lehi and his family, together with Ishmael, were directed by the Lord to come here and to possess this land. There was no doubt provision made also for many others; the ten tribes of Israel were carried away to a distant land, 'where never mankind dwelt;' where they should remain 'until the latter day;' then should they return according to the word of the Lord, and become one nation with Judah, 'in the land upon the mountains of Israel, and one king shall be king over them, and they shall no longer be two nations any more at all.' That there were then remnants of the house of Israel, is evident from the words of the apostle Paul. In writing to the Romans, who were Gentiles, and reasoning with them upon their standing and relationship to God, he tells them that 'the Jews were broken off because of their unbelief, and that they, (the Romans) stand by faith;' he tells them not to 'boast against the branches,' for the obvious reason, that 'thou bearest not the root, but the root thee; and that although the house of Judah was at that time about to be destroyed, yet all the house of Israel had not become extinct, nor were the promises made to the fathers, forgotten; for God said that he would graft them in again, not only so; but the house of Judah was only one branch of the house of Israel, whereas, there were many branches, who were not broken off. For, says Paul, if some of the branches be broken off, and thou being a wild olive tree, wert graffed [grafted] in among them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness, of the olive tree; boast not against the branches;' (that yet remain,) 'but if thou boast, thou bearest not the root, but the root thee.' From the above, it is evident that there were other branches of the house of Israel, that were not broken off at the time to which the apostle refers; and that instead of the Gentiles possessing the above kingdom and dominion, as some suppose, and having the exclusive charge of the ordinances of God's house, they were 'graffed [grafted] in' as a wild olive, 'among the natural branches, and with them partook of the root and fatness of the olive tree.'
The Lord provided for all these things: and before he destroyed, or broke off one portion of the house of Israel, he made ample provision for the perpetuation of their seed, the continuation of his mercy, and the ordinances of his house among the other branches. This is beautifully exemplified in the parable of the olive tree in the Book of Mormon.
"And it came to pass that the master of the vineyard went forth, and he saw that his olive tree began to decay; and he said, I will prune it, and dig about it, and nourish it, that perhaps it may shoot forth young and tender branches, and it perish not. And it came to pass that he pruned it, and digged about it, and nourished it, according to his word. And it came to pass that after many days, it began to put forth somewhat a little, young and tender branches; but behold, the main top thereof began to perish. And it came to pass that the master of the vineyard saw it, and he said unto his servant, it grieveth me that I should loose this tree; wherefore, go and pluck the branches from a wild olive tree, and bring them hither unto me; and we will pluck off those main branches which are beginning to wither away, and we will cast them into the fire, that they may be burned. And behold, saith the Lord of the vineyard, I take away many of these young and tender branches, and I will graft them whithersoever I will; and it mattereth not that if it so be, that the root of this tree will perish, I may preserve the fruit thereof unto myself; wherefore, I will take these young and tender branches, and I will graft them whithersoever I will. Take thou the branches of the wild olive tree, and graft them in, in the stead thereof: and these which I have plucked off, I will cast into the fire, and burn them, that they may not cumber the ground of my vineyard.
And it came to pass that the servant of the Lord of the vineyard, did according to the word of the Lord of the vineyard, and grafted in the branches of the wild olive tree. And the Lord of the vineyard caused that it should be digged about, and pruned, and nourished, saying unto his servant, it grieveth me that I should lose this tree; wherefore, that perhaps I might preserve the roots thereof that they perish not, that I might preserve them unto myself, I have done this thing. Wherefore, go thy way; watch the tree, and nourish it, according to my words.-And these will I place in the nethermost part of my vineyard, whithersoever I will, it mattereth not unto thee: and I do it, that I may preserve unto myself the natural branches of the tree: and also, that I may lay up thereof, against the season, unto myself: for it grieveth me that I should loose this tree, and the fruit thereof.
And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard went his way, and hid the natural branches of the tame olive tree in the nethermost parts of the vineyard; some in one, and some in another, according to his will and
pleasure. And it came to pass that a long time passed away, and the Lord of the vineyard said unto his servant, come let us go down into the vineyard that we may labor, in the vineyard.
And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard, and also the servant, went down into the vineyard to labor. And it came to pass that the servant said unto his master, behold, look here; behold the tree. And it it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard looked and beheld the tree, in which the wild branches had been grafted; and it had sprung forth and began to bear fruit. And he beheld that it was good: and the fruit thereof was like unto the natural fruit. And he said unto the servant, behold, the branches of the wild tree hath taken hold of the moisture of the root thereof, that the root thereof hath brought forth much strength; and because of the much strength of the root thereof, the wild branches have brought forth tame fruit: now, if we had not grafted in these branches, the tree thereof would have perished. And now, behold, I shall lay up much fruit, which the tree thereof hath brought forth: and the fruit thereof I shall lay up, against the season, unto mine own self.
And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard said unto the servant, come, let us go to the nethermost part of the vineyard, and behold if the natural branches of the tree hath not brought forth much fruit also, that I may lay up the fruit thereof, against the season, unto mine own self. And it came to pass that they went forth whither the master had hid the natural branches of the tree, and said unto the servant, behold these; and he beheld the first, that it had brought forth much fruit; and he beheld also, that it was good. And he said unto the servant, take off the fruit thereof, and lay it up, against the season, that I may preserve it unto mine own self: for behold, said he, this long time have I nourished it, and it hath brought forth much fruit.
And it came to pass that the servant said unto his master, how comest thou hither to plant this tree, or this branch of the tree? for behold, it was the poorest spot in all the land of the vineyard. And the Lord of the vineyard said unto him, counsel me not; I knew that it was a poor spot of ground; wherefore, I said unto thee, I have nourished it this long time; and thou beholdest that it hath brought forth much fruit.
And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard said unto his servant, look hither: behold, I have planted another branch of the tree also; and thou knowest that this spot of ground was poorer than the first. But, behold the tree: I have nourished it this long time, and it hath brought forth much fruit; therefore, gather it, and lay it up against the season, that I may preserve it unto mine own self.
And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard said again unto his servant, look hither, and behold another branch also, which I have planted: behold that I have nourished it also, and it hath brought forth fruit. And he said unto the servant look hither, and behold the last: behold this I have planted in a good spot of ground; and I have nourished it this long time, and only part of the tree hath brought forth tame fruit; and the other part of the tree hath brought forth wild fruit: behold, I have nourished this tree like unto the others."
From the above, it is very evident that there did exist other branches of the house of Israel, that were under the special guidance of the Lord, and to whom he paid peculiar attention, and that in order that he might preserve a pure seed unto himself; he took those "young and tender branches from the main tree, before it had become corrupt, and planted them in different parts of his vineyard, and dressed and nourished them, that they might bring forth good fruit unto himself." There is one peculiar trait in this dispensation of providence, which is, that these branches were hid, in the vineyard and consequently not generally known by the generality of mankind.
This may account for the generally received opinion, that the house of Judah were the only representatives of the kingdom of God upon the earth, and that consequently, when the kingdom of God was taken from them and given to the Gentiles, that the Gentiles were the sole possessors of it, and that the house of Israel had lost the blessings of God forever, and would only obtain mercy through the Gentiles. This opinion was obtaining among the Romans in Paul's day, hence his reasoning with them on this subject, shewing that they had received all their blessings through the Jews, and that if the Jews were broken off and the Gentiles graffed in, they bore not the root, but the root them; and that instead of either being the root, or the main branches, they were merely a scion taken from the wild olive tree and grafted into the old stock, dependant upon it; that they were neither the root nor the main branches, but "graffed in among the branches, and with them partaking of the root and fatness of the olive tree."
Those branches taken from the main stock were hid in different parts of the vineyard, some in one part and some in another. The
Ten Tribes were taken to a "land where never mankind dwelt, from whence they will return in the latter day."
Lehi and his family, together with others, came to this continent, where they worshipped the true God, and there were other branches, besides those, according to the parable, and also according to the account given by our Savior when he conversed with his disciples on this continent. "And verily, verily, I say unto you, that I have other sheep; neither of the land of Jerusalem; neither in any parts of that land round about; where [whither] I have been sent to minister. For they of whom I speak, are they who have not as yet heard my voice; neither have I at any time manifested myself unto them. But as I have received a commandment of the Father, that I shall go unto them, and that they shall hear my voice, and shall be numbered among my sheep, that there may be one fold, and one shepherd; therefore, I go to shew [show] myself unto them;"-7th chap., book of Nephi. [3 Nephi 7:24-26]
There was a number of the house of Israel discovered in little Thibet in the interior of China, in a highly civilized state, a few years ago. Whither these were the branches referred to or not, is not for us at present to say;-certain it is, however, that they do exist somewhere; according to the accounts given both in the Bible and the Book of Mormon,-there are some of the house of Israel, living on the islands of the sea. In the second book of Nephi, page 121 [2 Nephi 12:65, 67-69, pp. l57-158] we have the following: "For I command all men, both in the east, and in the west, and in the north, and in the south, and in the islands of the sea, that they shall write the words which I speak unto them, * * "For behold I shall speak unto the Jews, and they shall write it, and they [I] shall also speak unto the Nephites, and they shall write it; and I shall also speak unto the other tribes [of the house of Israel] which I have hid [led] away, and they shall write it." Here then we find some of God's people on the islands of the sea. Agreeable to this is the account given by Isaiah, XI;11: '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." No doubt then, according to these testimonies, but that there exists a remnant of the house of Israel, somewhere on the Islands of the sea; for the obvious reason, that if they do not exist there, they cannot come from there.
We have now found out several of the hiding places of the branches of the house of Israel. The Ten Tribes are undoubtedly hid; the history of the Nephites on this continent, was unknown to the world till lately. The watchful jealousy of the Chinese, has been a bulwark to those in little Thibet, Bucharia, and those on the islands of the sea are not known: and all of them have unquestionably been hid from the world, and this was the design of God to fulfil [fulfill] his purpose, according to the account given in the Book of Mormon, page 522. [P 644]
"And now it came to pass that when Jesus had spoken these words, he said unto those twelve whom he had chosen, ye are my disciples; and ye are a light unto this people, who are a remnant of the house of Joseph. And behold, this is the land of your inheritance; and the Father hath given it unto you. And not at any time hath the Father given me commandment that I should tell it unto your brethren at Jerusalem; neither at any time hath the Father given me commandment, that I should tell unto them concerning the other tribes of the house of Israel, whom the Father had led away out of the land. This much did the Father command me, that I should tell unto them, that other sheep I have, which are not of this fold; them also must I bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd. And now because of stiffneckedness and unbelief, they understood not my word; therefore I was commanded to say no more of the Father concerning this thing unto them. But, verily, I say unto you, that the Father hath commanded me, and I tell it unto you, that ye are [were] separated from among them because of their iniquity; therefore it is because of their iniquity, that they know not of you.-And verily I say unto you again, that the other tribes hath the Father separated from them; and it is because of their iniquity, that they know not [of] them. and verily I say unto you, that ye are they of whom I said, other sheep I have which are not of this fold; them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd. And they understood me not, for they supposed it had been the Gentiles; for they understood not that the Gentiles should be converted through their preaching; and they understood me not that I said they shall hear my voice; and they understood me not that the Gentiles should not at any time hear my voice; that I should not at any time manifest myself unto them, save it were by the Holy Ghost. But behold, ye have both heard my voice, and seen me; and ye are my sheep, and ye are numbered among those whom the Father hath given me. And verily, verily, I say unto you, that I have other
sheep, which are not of this; neither of the land of Jerusalem; neither in any parts of that land round about, whither I have been to minister. For they of whom I speak, are they who have not yet heard my voice; neither have I at any time manifested myself unto them. But I have received a commandment of the Father, that I shall go unto them, and that they shall hear my voice, and shall be numbered among my sheep, that there may be one fold, and one shepherd; therefore I go to shew [show] myself unto them. And I command you that ye shall write these sayings, after I am gone, that if it so be that my people at Jerusalem, they who have seen me, and have been with me in my ministry, do not ask the Father in my name, that they receive a knowledge of you by the Holy Ghost, and also of the other tribes whom they know not of, that these sayings which ye shall write shall be and shall be manifested unto the Gentiles, that through the fulness [fullness] of the Gentiles, the remnant of their seed who shall be scattered forth upon the face of the earth, because of their unbelief, may be brought in, or may be brought to a knowledge of me their redeemer."
(To be continued.)
Our accounts from abroad continue to be interesting, in many parts of the eastern, as well as the southern and western states, churches are being raised up, and the work of God is rolling forth. Many opposers to the work of righteousness, begin to see that their efforts are fruitless, and they are leaving the ministers of truth to pursue unmolested, the even tenor of their way. Whether this feeling arises from necessity or choice, is not for us to say; neither do we care much, so that we can obtain peace on any reasonable terms, without the sacrifice of truth. Whether men violently oppose or quietly receive the truth, it will roll forth; its cause is onward; "men can do nothing against the truth, but for the truth:" It is always easier, however, and certainly much more desirable, to live in peace with all men, than to be at variance. Righteousness and peace, and good will to all men is our motto, if they will receive it; if they will not, they must not blame us for being the "olive branch."
Who shall be our next president? We have not forgotten what we said a few weeks ago.-We have our eye on the man; we shall notify our friends in due time; and when we do, we will take "a long pull, a strong pull, and a pull altogether"
A discussion came off Tuesday evening last, in this city, between one of Miller's disciples and Sidney Rigdon, Esq., which excited a good deal of interest. The Millerite holds out the idea that the Savior will make his appearance between this and the first of April, while Mr. Rigdon contends, and clearly proves that the prophesies which are to be fulfilled before the Savior's coming, would not allow of so short a time as specified.
We have understood from different sources, that there has been two or three persons drowned, in attempting to cross the river opposite this place, recently, but whether the information is correct or not, we are not able as yet to learn. One or two teams have lately been lost while crossing on the ice.
For the Time Seasons.
Sir:-It may not be uninteresting for a little time to look at the weakness that man is heir to when left to run his length without the voice of inspiration to guide him through the vale of tears, even though they may have previously obtained great light. For the enlightened nations of antiquity have not been exempt from the most degrading superstition and idolatry, any more than the most ignorant. The Jews were with difficulty restrained from idolatrous and superstitious practices, they having imbibed these notions during their four hundred years sojourn in the land of Egypt. The Egyptians had a number of ideal Gods, to whom they erected temples of prodigious size and architectural splendor. The principal of these deities were Osiris and Isis, which are thought to be typical of the sun and moon. But they also offered worship to various creatures, as the ox or bull, with divers animals, birds, &c. They likewise paid adoration to the Nile, personifying it in the crocodile, to which temples were erected, and priests set apart for its service.-They had abundance of omens, charms, unlucky days and magic. In a word, they were greatly superstitious with all their learning.
The superstitious absurdities of Greek and Rome had their rise in Egypt, and their notions of deity were groveling and contemptible. The gods whom they adored were imagined to have been at one period, rulers or heroes on the Grecian territory. They had great faith in oracle and magical powers. Bees, ants, reptiles and beasts were fearful omens, comets and eclipses were certain signs of approaching trouble.
In Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Iceland, their deities were remarkably in accordance with the cold and stern character of the regions which they occupied; they had seats of
the gods and the blest, which they called Asgard and Walhalla, and these bore the same relation in their character to the Olympus and Elysium, of the Greeks. They believed that the universe was originally a chaos or mass of confused vapors, peopled by a race of evil spirits of gigantic bulk. A being of nobler nature sprung up among these, named Bure, from whom were descended Odin and his two brothers, Vile and Ve. These younger divinities followed exactly the same course with the northern giants, that was pursued by Jupiter and his brothers; with regard to the older giants or deities of the Greeks, Odin began to war with the evil spirits, and having at last overcome their great chief, he created the world out of that giant's body. His flesh became the mould [mold], his bones the rocks, his hair the vegetable tribes, his blood the ocean, and his skull the heavens, at the four corners of which were placed certain dwarfs, called North, South, East and West; whose duty it was to sustain the celestial dome. After this the luminaries of the sky were set in their places, and the order of the seasons appointed. Natt (night) wedded one of the Aser or celestial family of Odin, and gave birth to Dag (day.) These deities travel alternately around the world in cars, drawn by single horses. Frigga, or the earth, was the daughter of Odin, and also became his wife. The inhabitants of the earth, or mankind were created by Odin and his brothers.-Two pieces of wood, the one of ash, and the other of elm, formed the materials of the first pair of mortals, who were distinguished for personal beauty and intellectual ability.
We find a belief in all nations, of witches, wizards, fairies, &c., with innumerable charms and cures for those that should be seized therewith, when they had long been destitute of revelation and the knowledge of God. In the days of the apostles, light and intelligence spread abroad, and the heathens threw their idols to the bats and the moles, and the knowledge of God spread to the ends of the earth, comparatively speaking; yet so prone is man to evil, that it requires a continuation of revelation to keep him from falling again into darkness and superstition. After the apostles had been slain and the church of Christ disorganized and drove into the wilderness; superstitions and idolatry more gross and abominable than those of the heathen soon found their way into enlightened christendom, and men imagined a deity that could not appease his wrath without his devotees lacerating and mortifying their own bodies. The most shameful pennances[penance's] were practiced, such as going on a visit to certain shrines, in a state of nudity, eating the most nauseous filth, &c., &c., Miracles, and prodigies without number were believed in, till the whole christian world had fallen into idolatry, as absurd as that of any heathen nation. And, indeed, the account which I have just given of the creation of the world, and the formation of man, seems as reasonable as the one entertained by professors of Christianity in the nineteenth century, who have imagined a God without either body or sense, (parts) whose dwelling is beyond the bounds of both time and space, where he sits in unsubstantial majesty enthroned; that he spoke (without either mouth or tongue) and formed this solid globe from nothing. The heathen believe that it was made out of a giant's body, which is more probable than to have no material for such a vast undertaking. The heathen believe that they will exist again after death, in some happy spot of the earth, and have power to indulge their apetites [appetites] to the full. The christians believe they will live again, but that their bodies will change their nature, and become as spirits, and wing their way to a land of shadows, where nothing is material, and spend eternity in gazing at the God they imagine to exist in this strange country, casting their crowns before him, which will constitute their happiness.
Such was the state of enlightened christendom, when the Lord again sent a prophet to turn men from their superstitious notions and idolatrous practices, to the true and living God. So that we who were a little time ago, worshipping, we knew not what, we are now enabled to rejoice in the truth, having been brought from darkness to light, and from the power of sin and satan, to serve the true God. Seeing then, that we ourselves have been in the like pitiable condition, it behoves[behooves] us to use wisdom and charity toward our fellow men, if so be that we may be the means in the hands of God of setting their feet upon the rock, and plucking them as brands from the burning.
We as a church have nothing to boast of, for it is God that has made the difference in raising up a prophet to instruct his people, for of ourselves we know nothing, and should we be left without a man of God to direct us, we should soon become weak as other men; therefore to him be the glory, for now we can sing with the poet:
The morning breaks, the shadows fly,
Lo! Zion's standard is unfurled,
The dawning of a brighter day,
Majestic rises on the world.
I remain as ever, your affectionate brother in the new covenant, JOHN GREENHOW.
For the Times and Seasons.
Dear Brother:-Herewith I forward you a few articles I brought with me from England, which I beg your acceptance of, as a very small remembrance and token of the high esteem and respect I feel towards you, on the remembrance, that through your instrumentality, I was led to embrace the fulness[fullness] of the gospel. The period I had so fondly anticipated, of once more beholding and conversing with you, has at length been realized, and I cannot forego to mention the pleasure and gratification it has given me, of meeting with you in that place of which 'the Lord hath spoken good concerning it.' You have, I am well aware been made acquainted, through the medium of a friend, that we bid adieu to our native land on the 15th of September last. Our company consisted of about 180 persons, chiefly saints. We had a fine commodious vessel called the 'Metoka,' commanded by McLarren, who with his officers and men, behaved with every attention and kindness during the passage, which we made in seven weeks to New Orleans, and finally arrived at Nauvoo on the 11th of November. We had only three deaths on board, one sister, and two children. I must not forbear to state that the provisions supplied by Messrs. Ward and Clarke, on our voyager were excellent in quality and quantity. You can, my dear brother, in some measure, anticipate the feelings that throbbed within our bosoms, on reaching our resting place, the city of Nauvoo. You may suppose we were most pleasingly surprised, after having had our ears continually assailed with the doleful accounts of 'the wretchedness of the place,' its 'log and mud' built 'cabins,' its 'knee deep' muddy streets, the 'poverty and starvation' that awaited us, the 'villainy and roguery' of its inhabitants, the 'awful delusion of Mormonism,' beware of old Joe Smith,' and a thousand other such like salutations; you may judge then, how much we were gratified at beholding the striking contrast; while gazing with rapturous delight, first upon the 'TEMPLE,' which already assumes a lofty bearing, from the commanding eminence on which it is being erected; then the 'Nauvoo House;' the 'Mansion House;' (the residence of him of whom the world is not worthy;) the 'Masonic' 'Music' and public halls, some completed, and others are being so, besides numerous well built and substantial brick stores, and private dwellings. The whole site and aspect of the city, presenting a most cheering picture of enterprise and industry of its inhabitants, exhibiting a remarkable difference to many of the western towns which we passed in coming up the Mississippi, of far longer standing and origin.
I shall not at the present dwell upon my feelings in thus being permitted to reach this land; a land above all lands, a choice land;-where the Lord hath commanded his people to gather unto; in order that they may be instruct of him through the mouth of his seer and prophet. When I think of this unspeakable privilege and blessing of listening, like those of old, to the voice of the Lord's servants; receiving divine revelation and communication, from Him the source of all truth, when I know that he has thus spoken to, and honored his servant 'Joseph,' delivering him, time and time again, from the hands of his enemies, and will still continue to do so; and through him fulfilling those promises, relating to the latter day glory, and also the covenant to gather his ancient people should be accomplished; besides many other glorious truths to be realized in these last days, as well as making known other things, in which I truly rejoice, and which induces me to exclaim with the apostles of old: 'I count not my life dear, so that I may win Christ and be found in him, and the sufferings of this life are not to be compared with the glory that shall be revealed hereafter. On recalling the pleasurable emotions that have passed within the secret recesses of my heart, when holding sweet converse with those I loved and whom I have now left in my native land, and whose faces I may never again see in the flesh; or if I gather around me in 'fancy's mystic circle,' those my nearest and dearest relatives, and ponder upon a father and mother's fondest embrace; a brother and sister's tenderest affection; excited and called forth on taking a long and last farewell. If I thus look back upon the of rich and influential friends and connections, with others claims of a lucrative and secular nature; yet all these have been hushed and subdued in the contemplation of thus becoming a citizen in one of Zion's stakes, and my desire and prayer to God is, that she may still prosper and go on in glorious majesty and triumph, until the topstones of her palaces and dwellings be raised with one universal song of joy and gladness, to Him that reigneth forever and ever.
I remain, dear brother, yours, very sincerely in the new and everlasting covenant, W. ROWLEY.
Nauvoo, January 25, 1844.
Having had occasion to visit New Orleans, a few weeks since. And being anxious to economise [economize], I went as a deck passenger, and on returning from thence, it was my good fortune,
to fall in with a company of Latter-day Saints, who had just arrived from England.
On sailing up the "Father of Waters," the mighty Mississippi, I was much amused at studying the variety of character, met with on board the Steam Boat: without entering at the present time, into a minute description of those, who formed the greater part of this motley company, I shall just relate an incident, that passed under my own observation, otherwise, I could not have supposed that in this "land of the brave."-this "Haven of rest;" a scene so disgraceful and revolting, as the one I then witnessed, could have transpired in a professed free country like unto America.
The incident alluded to was so repugnant to a free-born Englishman's mind and feelings, that had not principles of a higher and nobler, character, pervaded the bosom of the Saints, a general conflict must have ensued,
It was well known, that there was "Mormons," on board, and a party of Missourian farmers, and Dealers, took every occasion to teaze [tease] and insult them, especially on this occasion, one miscreant looking fellow, armed with a bowie knife, and without any previous provocation whatever, went up to the berth of one of the Saints and violently dragged him from thence, at the same time, ferociously striking him over the temples,-his colleagues looking on, and joining in a laugh of fiendish triumph at their supposed victory. It was evidently their intention, by this coward and dastardly act, to have excited the Mormons to retaliate and being far more in number, they had gloated over their fancied prey, with savage and relentless ferocity, that had most likely inspired them and others, on a former occasion when they drove an harmless and inoffensive people from their borders; robbing, plundering, and even murdering many an helpless, and even murdering many an helpless, and innocent victim, which the perusal of several heart-rending "Appeals", and documents, inserted in your highly respectable Columns, fully prove and substantiate.
When, I would ask, Mr. Editor, is there to be a stop put to such proceedings as these?
Can this be called "a Land of liberty and freedom," when such unheard-of cruelty and oppression is practised, and no redress available?
But fearful of further trespassing upon your room, I remain,
Yours very respectfully.
Nauvoo Jan. 25th. 1844
P. S. The name of the gentleman, who was thus insulted, is Mr. Henry Needham of this city.
BY MISS E. R. SNOW.
What aileth thee, Oh! Missouri! that thy face should gather blackness, and why are thy features so terribly distorted?
Rottenness has seized upon thy vitals-corruption is preying upon thy inward parts, and the breath of thy lips is full of destructive contagion.
What meaneth thy shaking, and why art thou terrified? Thou hast become like Belshazzar. Mene, mene, tekel, upharsin,' is indeed written against thee; but it is the work of thine own hand-the characters upon thy wall, are of thine own inscription, and wherefore dost thou tremble?
Wouldst thou know the interpretation thereof? Hast thou sought for a Daniel to declare it unto thee? Verily, one greater than a Daniel was in thy midst; but thou hast butchered the saints, and hast hunted the prophets like Ahab of old.
Thou hast extinguished the light of thy own glory-thou hast plucked from thy head the crown of honor-thou hast divested thyself of the robe of respectability-thou hast thrust from thine own bosom, the veins that flowed with virtue and integrity.
Thou hast violated the laws of our sacred constitution-thou hast unsheathed the sword against thy dearest national rights, by rising up against thine own citizens, and moistening thy soil with the blood of those that legally inherited it.
When thou hadst torn from helpless innocence its rightful protectors, thou didst pollute the holy sanctuary of female virtue, and barbarously trample upon the most sacred gems of domestic felicity!
Therefore, the daughters of Columbia count thee a reproach, and blush with indignation at the mention of thy name.
Thou hast become an ignominious stain on the escutcheon of a noble, free and independent Republic-thou art a stink in the nostrils of the Goddess of Liberty.
Thou art fallen-thou art fallen beneath the weight of thine own unhallowed deeds, and thine iniquities are pressing as a heavy load upon thee.
But although thy glory has departed-though thou hast gone down like a star that is set forever; thy memory will not be erased-thou wilt be had in remembrance even until the saints of God shall forget that the way to the celestial kingdom is 'through great tribulation.'
Though thou shouldst be severed from the body of the union, like a mortified member-though the lion from the thicket should devour thee up; thy doings will be perpetuated; mention will be made of them by the generations to come.
Thou art already associated with Herod, Nero and the 'bloody Inquisition'-thy name has become synonymous with oppression, cruelty, treachery and murder.
Thou wilt rank high with the haters of righteousness and the shedders of innocent blood-the hosts of tyrants are waiting beneath to meet thee at thy coming.
O ye wise legislators! Ye executives of the nation! Ye distributors of justice! Ye advocates of equal rights! Arise and redress the wrongs of an innocent people, and redeem the cause of insulted liberty.
Let not the contagious spirit of corruption wither the sacred wreath that encircles you, and spread a cloud of darkness over the glory of your star spangled banner.
Lest the monarchs of the earth should have you in derision-lest you should be weighed in the balance with the heathen nations, and should be found wanting.
Lest the arm of the Lord should be revealed in judgment against you-lest an arrow of vengeance from the Almighty should pierce the rotten fabric of a once sheltering constitution, and your boasted confidence become like an oak dismembered of its branches, whose shattered trunk is torn piecemeal by the uprising of the tempest.
For the cries of the widow and fatherless-the groans of the oppressed, and the prayers of the suffering exile, have come up before the Lord God of Hosts, who brought our pilgrim fathers across the boisterous ocean, and raised up a Washington to break the yoke of foreign oppression.
Morely Settlement, Jan. 1844
For the Times and Seasons.
A SONG OF ZION.
By W. W. PHELPS
How sweet is the communion 'Tis like a little leaven
Of saints that fear the Lord, The woman hid for good,
And strive, in perfect union, When she, as queen of heaven,
To gain the great reward. In gold of Ophir stood.
'Tis like the oil of Aaron 'Tis like the court of Zion,
Anointing him a priest, Where garments are all white;
Perfumed with rose from Sharon, Who'll reign like Judah's Lion,
And Cassia from the east, In everlasting light.
Tis like the dew of Hermon [Herman?], Their robes alike in beauty,
Where God began to bless, Their hearts and faith agree,
And promised in his sermon They'll ever be on duty
Eternal happiness. Till all their race is free,
'Tis like the precious ointment They'll eat the hidden manna,
That God Almighty had Receive the precious stone,
At Jesus Christ's appointment, And sing the great hosanna
Which made his heart so glad. Where God and Christ are one.
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, Hancock county, Illinois, by
EDITOR AND PROPRIETOR.
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