Ordinances that Can Only Be Administered in the Temple—Endowments, Etc.

Discourse by President Brigham Young, delivered at Franklin, Cache County, Thursday Evening, September 4, 1873.

We have taken you a little by surprise, brethren and sisters, in coming in to your town today. This is in consequence of its being so stormy where we have been, and we thought we would not venture to drive from Soda Springs through to Logan in two days. By taking more time, we thought we would have an opportunity of stopping in the settlements and having meetings. I will talk to you a few moments, then I will retire to my rest, and not stay here during the meeting. I feel very wearied; but I was quite unwell when I left home, and our journey has been quite fatiguing.

The remarks that I shall make to you this evening will be upon the salvation of the people. There are a few ideas that I will relate to you, that the brethren and sisters should understand. There are many of the ordinances of the house of God that must be performed in a Temple that is erected expressly for the purpose. There are other ordinances that we can administer without a Temple. You know that there are some which you have received—baptism, the laying on of hands, the gifts of the Holy Ghost, such as the speaking in and interpretation of tongues, prophesying, healing, discerning of spirits, etc., and many blessings bestowed upon the people, we have the privilege of receiving without a Temple. There are other blessings that will not be received, and ordinances that will not be performed according to the law that the Lord has revealed, without their being done in a Temple prepared for that purpose. We can, at the present time, go into the Endowment House and be baptized for the dead, receive our washings and anointing, etc., for there we have a font that has been erected, dedicated expressly for baptizing people for the remission of sins, for their health and for their dead friends; in this the Saints have the privilege of being baptized for their friends. We also have the privilege of sealing women to men, without a Temple. This we can do in the Endowment House; but when we come to other sealing ordinances, ordinances pertaining to the holy Priesthood, to connect the chain of the Priesthood from father Adam until now, by sealing children to their parents, being sealed for our forefathers, etc., they cannot be done without a Temple. But we can seal women to men, but not men to men, without a Temple. When the ordinances are carried out in the Temples that will be erected, men will be sealed to their fathers, and those who have slept clear up to father Adam. This will have to be done, because of the chain of the Priesthood being broken upon the earth. The Priesthood has left the people, but in the first place the people left the Priesthood. They transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, and broke the everlasting covenant, and the Priesthood left them; but not until they had left the Priesthood. This Priesthood has been restored again, and by its authority we shall be connected with our fathers, by the ordinance of sealing, until we shall form a perfect chain from father Adam down to the closing up scene. This ordinance will not be performed anywhere but in a Temple; neither will children be sealed to their living parents in any other place than a Temple. For instance, a man and his wife come into the Church, and they have a family of children. These children have been begotten out of the covenant, because the marriages of their parents are not recognized by the Lord as performed by his authority; they have, therefore, to be sealed to their parents, or else they cannot claim them in eternity; they will be distributed according to the wisdom of the Lord, who does all things right. When we had a Temple prepared in Nauvoo, many of the brethren had their children who were out of the covenant sealed to them, and endowments were given. Then parents, after receiving their endowments, and being sealed for time and all eternity, and they have other children, they are begotten and born under the covenant, and they are the rightful heirs to the kingdom, they possess the keys of the kingdom. Children born unto parents before the latter enter into the fullness of the covenants, have to be sealed to them in a Temple to become legal heirs of the Priesthood. It is true they can receive the ordinances, they can receive their endowments and be blessed in common with their parents; but still the parents cannot claim them legally and lawfully in eternity unless they are sealed to them. Yet the chain would not be complete without this sealing ordinance being performed.

Now, to illustrate this, I will refer to my own father’s family. My father died before the endowments were given. None of his children have been sealed to him. If you recollect, you that were in Nauvoo, we were very much hurried in the little time we spent there after the Temple was built. The mob was there ready to destroy us; they were ready to burn our houses, they had been doing it for a long time; but we finished the Temple according to the commandment that was given to Joseph, and then took our departure. Our time, therefore, was short, and we had no time to attend to this. My father’s children, consequently, have not been sealed to him. Perhaps all of his sons may go into eternity, into the spirit world, before this can be attended to; but this will make no difference; the heirs of the family will attend to this if it is not for a hundred years.

It will have to be done sometime. If, however, we get a Temple prepared before the sons of my father shall all have gone into the spirit world, if there are any of them remaining, they will attend to this, and as heirs be permitted to receive the ordinances for our father and mother. This is only one case, and, to illustrate this subject perfectly, I might have to refer to hundreds of examples for each case.

With regard to the heirship, I cannot enter into all the matter to night. The subject would require a good deal of explaining to the people, consequently, I will pass over it at present. I can merely say this, however, that we see that the Lord makes his selection according to his own mind and will with regard to his ministers. Brother Joseph Smith, instead of being the firstborn, was the third son of his father’s family who came to maturity, yet he is actually the heir of the family; he is the heir of his father’s house. It seems to us that the oldest son would be the natural heir; but we see that the Lord makes his own selection. There are some inquiries now with regard to officiating in ordinances, which I wish to answer. Some brethren here are anxious to know whether they can receive endowments for their sons or for their daughters. No, they cannot until we have a Temple; but they can officiate in the ordinances so far as baptism and sealing are concerned. A man can be baptized for a son who died before hearing the Gospel. A woman can be baptized for her daughter, who died without the Gospel. Suppose that the father of a dead son wishes to have a wife sealed to his son; if the young woman desired as a wife is dead and have a mother or other female relative in the Church, such mother is the heir, and she can act in the sealing ordinances in the stead of her daughter. But if the young woman desired as a wife have no relative in the Church, to act in her behalf, then the mother of the young man can be baptized for her, and act as proxy for her in the sealing ordinances. We can attend to these ordinances now before the Temple is built here; but no one can receive endowments for another, until a Temple is prepared in which to administer them. We administer just so far as the law permits us to do. In reality we should have performed all these ordinances long ago, if we had been obedient; we should have had Temples in which we could attend to all these ordinances. Now, the brethren have the privilege of being baptized for their dead friends—when I say the brethren, I mean the brethren and sisters—and these friends can be sealed.

For instance, a man and his wife come into the Church; he says, “My father and mother were good people; I would like to officiate for them.” “Well, have you any other friends in the Church?” “Nobody but myself and my wife.” Well, now, the wife is not a blood relation, consequently she is not in reality the proper person, but she can be appointed the heir if there are no other relatives—if there are no sisters, this wife of his can officiate for the mother; but if the man has a sister in the Church, it is the privilege and place of the sister of this man, the daughter of those parents that are dead, to go and officiate—be baptized, to go and be sealed with her brother for her father and mother. If this man and woman have a daughter old enough to officiate for her grandmother, she is a blood relation, and is the heir, and can act; but if there is no daughter, the man’s wife can be appointed as the heir.

I want to say a few words with regard to other operations. In the law that the Lord has revealed he requires obedience. I do not know of one ordinance but what there are laws connected with it, and they cannot be disregarded by the Saints and they be blessed as though the laws were observed. We are required to believe in God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ as our Savior; we are required to repent of our sins; then we have the privilege of entering in through the door of baptism and going into the house of God. There is another commandment that the Lord has given—it is that they must have hands laid on them that they may receive the Holy Ghost and the gifts and graces that the Lord has for his children; but if we are not baptized, we are not entitled to the other blessings. If we do not believe in the first ordinance we cannot receive the second. If we do not go forth and be baptized for the remission of sins, we are not entitled to the Holy Ghost and its blessings through the law or the requirements of heaven to the children of our Father. Now, as to the requirements, we will ask, “Do you know the law? Should you keep the law?” Yes, certainly you do know by the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, which is for us, and the New and Old Testament; these are a foundation and contain the first laws that have been given. We have them now in our possession. Then the Book of Mormon contains the same. The Book of Mormon contains the same plan of salvation that the Lord requires the world to listen to, and the Book of Doctrine and Covenants is given for the Latter-day Saints expressly for their everyday walk and actions. Now, for instance, the Latter-day Saints are required to go to meeting on Sunday. How many are there that come to these meetings and repent of their sins, confess their sins and partake of the Sacrament of our Savior and testify by these acts that they are actual believers? Do we keep the Sabbath, brethren and sisters? Do we deal justly one with another? Those things are required of us. Do we walk humbly before our God? Do we permit ourselves to speak evil of the anointed of the Lord. Do we permit ourselves, brethren, to take the name of the Lord in vain? It is certainly written that we should not do it; that we should not falsify, lie, cheat, etc. Now all these requirements are made of us. We are required to pay Tithing, we are required to deal justly one with another and be honest in our dealing; and all these requirements which I need not repeat over to you, you read and you understand them. Now are we entitled to the blessings of the house of God if we keep the commandments he has given to us? Yes. If we observe his precepts and do them, are we entitled to these blessings? Yes. Are we entitled to them if we do not keep the commandments? No, we are not. Brethren go and get their endowments, and they get a recommendation so as to go into the house of the Lord. Now you go to the Bishop and enquire strictly as to some of these brethren: “Does such a brother pay his Tithing? Is he faithful and industrious?” “Well, no.” “Is he honest in his dealings?” “Well, I guess he means to do right.” “Does he always speak the truth?” “Well, I cannot say that he does exactly.” “Does he drink liquor?” “Well, yes, sometimes he does. Yes, I think he does, although I never saw him drunk.” “Does he take the name of the Lord in vain?” “Well, I don’t know, I have heard that he does swear sometimes.” “Does he quarrel with his wife?” “I don’t know; I understand, how ever, they do not live very happily together.” This man probably wants another wife. Is he entitled to these blessings? He pays a little Tithing, perhaps, but he says he is going to pay it in full; and the Bishop says: “He has been teasing me a long time for a recommendation.” “But why did you give it to him?” I will answer this. “I had to give it to him to get rid of him, so that he won’t tease me any more.” This is the answer. Now ask yourselves, my brethren and sisters, is he entitled to the blessings that the Lord has for his faithful children?

Be faithful and obedient to the few words that I have said to you, with regard to the ordinances, etc., and what we can do and what we cannot do. I said but a few words, but they are enough.

I will say to you, may the Lord bless you—peace be to you. I am glad that I am able to be here; there are others here who will speak to you. I will tell you honestly I do not feel well; I do not feel pleased; it is not gratifying to me when I hear of those who profess to be Latter-day Saints, living short of their privileges and duties; but when I hear of men and women living up to the privileges that the Lord has for them, it endears them to me, and I delight in them; and I can say that I continually pray for the Latter-day Saints, that the Lord will bless and preserve us, that we may be saved in the kingdom of God. This is my constant prayer, and I say God bless you. Amen.

The Gospel Incorporates All Truth—Mode of Administering the Sacrament—Abiding Counsel—Heavenly Blessings Are Conditional—Progressiveness of the Work—Plural Marriage—Tithing—Tardiness of the Saints in Observing Practical Duties—Cooperation

Discourse by President Brigham Young, delivered in the Bowery, at Paris, Oneida County, Idaho, Sunday, August 31, 1873.

The Gospel of life and salvation that we have embraced in our faith, and that we profess to carry out in our lives, incorporates all truth. We frequently testify to each other that we know that this Gospel is true; and as I have a great many times said to those that listen to my conversation, upon the principles of life and salvation, I believe this work, I believe this Gospel, I believe this doctrine, that is brought to us through the Prophet Joseph, in these the latter days, in this our time, for the simplest, plainest and most palpable reason that can be given. “What is it?” Why, because it is true. The Gospel that I have embraced comprehends all truth. “How much of it is true?” All of it. “How much does it embrace?” All the truth that there is in the heavens, on the earth, under the earth; and if there is any truth in hell, this doctrine claims it. It is all the truth of heaven, the truth of God, the life of those that live forever, the law by which worlds were, are, and will be brought into existence, and pass from one degree or one state of being to another, pertaining to the exaltation of intelligence from the lowest to the highest state. This is the doctrine that the Latter-day Saints believe, whether they realize it or not. Well, now, upon apostasy. What have the Latter-day Saints got to apostatize from? Everything that there is good, pure, holy, godlike, exalting, ennobling, extending the ideas, the capacities of the intelligent beings that our heavenly Father has brought forth upon this earth. What will they receive in exchange? I can comprehend it in a very few words. These would be the words that I should use: death, hell and the grave. That is what they will get in exchange. We may go into the particulars of that which they experience. They experience darkness, ignorance, doubt, pain, sorrow, grief, mourning, unhappiness; no person to condole with in the hour of trouble, no arm to lean upon in the day of calamity, no eye to pity when they are forlorn and cast down; and I comprehend it by saying: death, hell and the grave. This is, what they will get in exchange for their apostasy from the Gospel of the Son of God. This is their reward, and it is foolishness, not merely nonsense; a person can have a little nonsense and pass it over; but this is foolishness. There is not a particle of good sense about it; no light, no intelligence, nothing that is ennobling, elevating, cheering, comforting, consoling, that produces friends, or anything of this kind. I call it foolism; I do it this time, consequently we will not talk anything about apostasy.

When people receive this Gospel, what do they sacrifice? Why, death for life. This is what they give: darkness for light, error for truth, doubt and unbelief for knowledge and the certainty of the things of God, consequently I consider it to be the biggest piece of foolism that can be hatched up, imagined or entertained, or followed out by any human being, to leave this Gospel for what they will receive in exchange. So much for apostasy.

Now a few words, my brethren and sisters, with regard to our position. There are many in this Church who have been with it a long time. This Church has been traveling for many years. The time that this Church has been traveling exceeds the time of the children of Israel in the wilderness.

[At this point the water for the Sacrament was blessed.]

I will give you a word of counsel here with regard to consecrating the bread and the water, which I want the Saints to remember. When you [addressing the Bishops and Elders] administer the Sacrament, take this book [the Book of Doctrine and Covenants] and read this prayer. Take the opportunity to read this prayer until you can remember it. You cannot get up anything that is better, and not even equal to it; and when you read it, read it so that the people can hear you. This is what I wish of you; it is what is right, and that which the Spirit will manifest to you if you inquire; and if you cannot commit this prayer to memory, the one that is given by revelation expressly for consecrating the bread and the wine, or water, if the latter be used, take the book and read until you can remember. If I were to come here next Sabbath, and see you breaking bread, would this, that I am now mentioning, be thought of? The people have various ideas with regard to this prayer. They sometimes cannot hear six feet from the one who is praying, and in whose prayer, perhaps, there are not three words of the prayer that is in this book, that the Lord tells us that we should use. This is pretty hard on the Elders, is it not? If they could remember one thousandth part of that which they have heard, it would have sanctified them years and years ago; but it goes in at one ear and out at the other—it is like the weaver’s shuttle passing through the web.

Now I am going to tell you some more things, and how long will you remember them? Until you get home? Perhaps there are a few who will remember a few words of counsel that I shall give to you. I am here to give this people, called Latter-day Saints, counsel to direct them in the path of life. I am here to answer; I shall be on hand to answer when I am called upon, for all the counsel and for all the instruction that I have given to this people. If there is an Elder here, or any member of this Church, called the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, who can bring up the first idea, the first sentence that I have delivered to the people as counsel that is wrong, I really wish they would do it; but they cannot do it, for the simple reason that I have never given counsel that is wrong; this is the reason. This people, called Latter-day Saints, have been laboring now over forty years. Forty-three years last April, the sixth day, this Church was organized. People have been coming into it, many have gone out of it, many have died in the faith; but there is quite a number in it that are now living who have held on to it from the beginning, and they have been striving to increase in their knowledge, to enlarge their faith and their comprehension of the principles of eternal life; but it is slow progress. I wonder if there are any particular sisters here who have lived humble and faithful, to whom the Spirit has manifested that their progress and advancement are slow: “That by the Spirit that I receive from the Lord, the Spirit that is given to me at times, I can see that we are far in the rear of what we should be, and we have not come up to that status of perfection and purity that the Latter-day Saints should reach.” Are there any sisters who have experienced any such thing? Are there any Elders who can bear witness to these things? I expect there are. I expect there is any number of sisters in this Church who can bear witness to this, and testify that the people called Latter-day Saints are very tardy in the practice of the things of God.

Now with regard to the blessings. There are blessings that the Lord proffers to his people. Has he any conditions? This is the question. The blessings that the Lord wishes to bestow upon his people in the latter days, as he did upon them in former days, are they proffered to the people on any conditions whatever, or is it the voluntary act upon the involuntary people? Are they given to us whether we want them or not? Whether we will enjoy them or not? Or whether we will profit by them or not? How is this, Latter-day Saints? Is this the way the Lord does? You and I understand this. Every blessing the Lord proffers to his people is on conditions. These conditions are: “Obey my law, keep my commandments, walk in my ordinances, observe my statutes, love mercy, preserve the law that I have given to you inviolate, keep yourselves pure in the law, and then you are entitled to these blessings, and not until then.” Now, is this not the fact? I leave it to you. You have the Old and the New Testament, from which we can learn doctrine. You have the Book of Mormon to read, from which we can learn doctrine. You have the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, which is more especially necessary to this generation. It does not contain different doctrine to the Book of Mormon and Testaments. It is explanatory of these three books, corroborates the doctrine that is taught in them, and points out the path for this people to walk in today, so that we may not err, but know how to order our lives from morning till evening, from evening till morning, from Sunday morning till Sunday morning again, from New Year to New Year, and every day of our lives. The doctrine that the Lord has taught us and given to us through his servant Joseph, points out the path for us to walk in, and, while walking in this path, we do not lose sight of one iota of the Gospel, but you must hold it secure, and always keep it before you by preserving those laws and ordinances, and continuing to hold them precious. If the Saints will do this, the Holy Ghost, the Comforter, the Spirit of our Father and God will enlighten their minds and bring to their remembrance things that transpired in the past, and things to come to pass in the future, and they may lay a foundation for everlasting life and eternal lives in the celestial kingdom of our God. You may obtain these blessings by keeping in mind and observing the principles, doctrine, and the laws and statutes that are delivered to the people of God for their edification, for their perfection, for their comfort and consolation, to prepare them for entering into the celestial kingdom. If any profess to live in the observance of these principles, and do not enjoy the spirit of revelation, they deceive themselves. No person deceives the Lord. Every individual that lives according to the laws that the Lord has given to his people, and has received the blessings that he has in store for the faithful, should be able to know the things of God from the things which are not of God, the light from the darkness, that which comes from heaven and that which comes from somewhere else. This is the satisfaction and the consolation that the Latter-day Saints enjoy by living their religion; this is the knowledge which every one who thus lives possesses.

These are the books, the Old and New Testament, the Book of Mormon and the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, and we take all that has been said to us by the Spirit of Truth, bring it together, live to it, and this brings us into a condition that we have fellowship with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ, and the people of Christ are cleansed from all sin, walk in the light and no more in darkness. We have received in the first place the first ordinances pertaining to the Gospel that Jesus introduced, that have been sent to the earth for the salvation of the children of men. Before the ordinances are performed, however, the people hear the name of Christ declared; Jesus is preached to the people; faith springs up in the hearts of the people. We the people believe. The Spirit of Truth bears witness to our spirits that this is correct. This is the Christ; he is the Savior of the world; and we begin to have faith in him; and when we begin to have faith in him, and believe on him, and the Father who sent him, we begin to look around ourselves and say: “Why is it that we saw nothing so familiar and perfect years ago? All this is so familiar and plain and simple. How is this? They that declare Christ to us, are they ready to teach us?” “Yes, certainly.” “Do you believe?” “Yes.” Do you wish to be a disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ?” “Yes.” “Do you wish to enter into his family?” “Yes.” “Do you wish to belong to this quorum of disciples?” “Yes.” “Is there anything for me to do to get there?” says the candidate. “Yes, certainly,” says the Elder. “Well, what is it?” “To go down into the waters of baptism, this is the first ordinance, and be baptized by one having authority.”

Well, now, this people have received all this. They have been convicted of the truth, they have believed the truth, they have repented of their sins, they have received baptism for the remission of their sins, and the next ordinance or blessing—the laying on of hands, so that they may receive the Holy Ghost. What accompanies this Holy Ghost? I have been telling you: it brings to our remembrance things past, present, and future, and dwells upon the things of God. Here are the ordinances, and we have commenced to obey them. We have the promise of receiving blessings if we hold on to the faith, and not turn away from this principle; and although temptation may present itself to us, we will resist it, and we will cling to the things of God, and believe on his promises, and will ask the Father in the name of Jesus to help us to overcome these temptations, and we will free ourselves from this darkness; we will break the chain of doubt and unbelief, and we will emerge into the full faith of the Lord Jesus. When temptations come to you, be humble and faithful, and determined that you will overcome, and you will receive a deliverance, and continue faithful, having the promise of receiving blessings. What are these blessings?

There is a variety of blessings; a different blessing being probably given to one, two, three or four of this congregation. Thus, one will have faith to lay hands upon the sick and rebuke disease, and drive it from the person afflicted. Many may receive this blessing of faith, the gift of healing. Some may receive faith to the discerning of spirits; they can discern the spirit of a person, whether it is good or evil. They have such power, that when a person enters this congregation they can tell the spirit of such person; then they have received the gift of discerning of spirits. Some may receive the gift of tongues, that they will get up and speak in tongues, and speak in many other languages beside their mother tongue, the language that they were brought up in, that they were first taught, and be able to proclaim the Gospel of life and salvation that all men could understand it. These are the blessings; but others might receive the gift of prophecy, get up and prophesy what is to befall this nation, what will befall this or that individual, and what will befall the different nations of the earth, etc. Now, after naming some of the blessings, I want to come to something else, and draw a line for the Latter-day Saints to walk up to.

Suppose that we hear the name of the Savior declared to us, that he is the Savior of the world, and by his death atoned for the sins of every man, and we believe that this is the fact; but instead of inquiring, “Is there anything for me to do? is there any labor for me to perform?” when we get home we sing and we say, “I thank God, and I am satisfied.” When the Elder says, “You must be baptized for the remission of sins,” and we say, “Oh no, we have received the Spirit of Truth, there is no need of baptism. We have received all that is necessary. The Spirit of Truth is given to us; we acknowledge the Savior, and we rejoice in him, and we will not be baptized for the remission of sins;” are we entitled to have hands laid upon us for the reception of the Holy Ghost? No; every one comes to this conclusion. Suppose that we make ourselves satisfied with what we have received, and we can say that Jesus is the Christ—“Yes, I believe he is the Christ; but I don’t see the use of any of these ordinances,” are we entitled to the Holy Ghost? No. Are we entitled to faith to heal the sick? No. Are we entitled to receive the spirit of prophecy? No. Are we entitled to the gift of speaking in, or the gift of the interpretation of tongues? No. Are we entitled to the gift of the discerning of spirits? No. Are we entitled to any power or blessing that the Lord has promised to his disciples: that if anybody administered poison to them, it should not harm them, and if their pathway were marked in the midst of serpents, they could take up serpents and they should not hurt them? Are we entitled to this protection? What is the answer of the Latter-day Saints? My brethren and sisters, answer this question in your own minds. Are we entitled to the blessings of the holy Gospel unless we obey the ordinances thereof, and all the commandments and laws and requirements that are laid down for us to obey? Now I know that every Latter-day Saint will come to the same conclusion that I do—that if we did not obey, we would not be entitled to any of these blessings from our Father. There is not a Latter-day Saint but who comes to the same conclusion as myself—that we would not merit, we would not be entitled to, we could not claim at the hand of our God those blessings that he has promised through obedience to his Word. Could we be called the people of God? We would be in the path of disobedience. We would be in the path that leads to death. We would be in the broad road that millions are walking in to death. Now, every one of us comes to this conclusion.

This people I say are very tardy. I will ask you a question, and I will let you answer it in your own minds, for you know, and I am satisfied that the answer I shall give will satisfy the Saints. Can we stand still, receive so much pertaining to the blessings of the kingdom of God, receive so much knowledge, just so much wisdom, just so much power, and then stop and receive no more? How is this, Latter-day Saints? Your answer will be precisely like mine—I can answer with you all. This people must go forward, or they will go backward. Will all answer this question the same way? Will the same conclusion be in the mind of every Latter-day Saint, that this work is a progressive work, this doctrine that is taught the Latter-day Saints in its nature is exalting, increasing, expanding and extending broader and broader until we can know as we are known, see as we are seen? That is the answer of the Latter-day Saints.

We will say we have received a great deal; very much instruction have we received. But there are keys to open up other ordinances which I will mention. Do you recollect that in about the year 1840-41, Joseph had a revelation concerning the dead? He had been asked the question a good many times; “What is the condition of the dead, those that lived and died without the Gospel?” It was a matter of inquiry with him. He considered this question not only for himself, but for the brethren and the Church. “What is the condition of the dead? What will be their fate? Is there no way today by which they can receive their blessings as there was in the days of the Apostles, and when the Gospel was preached upon the earth in ancient days?” When Joseph received the revelation that we have in our possession concerning the dead, the subject was opened to him, not in full but in part, and he kept on receiving. When he had first received the knowledge by the spirit of revelation how the dead could be officiated for, there are brethren and sisters here, I can see quite a number here who were in Nauvoo, and you recollect that when this doctrine was first revealed, and in hurrying in the administration of baptism for the dead, that sisters were baptized for their male friends, were baptized for their fathers, their grandfathers, their mothers and their grandmothers, &c. I just mention this so that you will come to understanding, that as we knew nothing about this matter at first, the old Saints recollect, there was little by little given, and the subject was made plain, but little was given at once. Consequently, in the first place people were baptized for their friends and no record was kept. Joseph afterwards kept a record, &c. Then women were baptized for men and men for women, &c. It would be very strange, you know, to the eyes of the wise and they that understood the things pertaining to eternity, if we were called upon to commence a work that we could not finish. This, therefore, was regulated and all set in order; for it was revealed that if a woman was baptized for a man, she could not be ordained for him, neither could she be made an Apostle or a Patriarch for the man, consequently the sisters are to be baptized for their own sex only.

This doctrine of baptism for the dead is a great doctrine, one of the most glorious doctrines that was ever revealed to the human family; and there are light, power, glory, honor and immortality in it. After this doctrine was received, Joseph received a revelation on celestial marriage. You will recollect, brethren and sisters, that it was in July, 1843, that he received this revelation concerning celestial marriage. This doctrine was explained and many received it as far as they could understand it. Some apostatized on account of it; but others did not, and received it in their faith. This, also, is a great and noble doctrine. I have not time to give you many items upon the subject, but there are a few hints that I can throw in here that perhaps may be interesting. As far as this pertains to our natural lives here, there are some who say it is very hard. They say, “This is rather a hard business; I don’t like my husband to take a plurality of wives in the flesh.” Just a few words upon this. We would believe this doctrine entirely different from what it is presented to us, if we could do so. If we could make every man upon the earth get him a wife, live righteously and serve God, we would not be under the necessity, perhaps, of taking more than one wife. But they will not do this; the people of God, therefore, have been commanded to take more wives. The women are entitled to salvation if they live according to the word that is given to them; and if their husbands are good men, and they are obedient to them, they are entitled to certain blessings, and they will have the privilege of receiving certain blessings that they cannot receive unless they are sealed to men who will be exalted. Now, where a man in this Church says, “I don’t want but one wife, I will live my religion with one,” he will perhaps be saved in the celestial kingdom; but when he gets there he will not find himself in possession of any wife at all. He has had a talent that he has hid up. He will come forward and say, “Here is that which thou gavest me, I have not wasted it, and here is the one talent,” and he will not enjoy it, but it will be taken and given to those who have improved the talents they received, and he will find himself without any wife, and he will remain single forever and ever. But if the woman is determined not to enter into a plural-marriage, that woman when she comes forth will have the privilege of living in single blessedness through all eternity. Well, that is very good, a very nice place to be a minister to the wants of others. I recollect a sister conversing with Joseph Smith on this subject. She told him: “Now, don’t talk to me; when I get into the celestial kingdom, if I ever do get there, I shall request the privilege of being a ministering angel; that is the labor that I wish to perform. I don’t want any companion in that world; and if the Lord will make me a ministering angel, it is all I want.” Joseph said, “Sister, you talk very foolishly, you do not know what you will want.” He then said to me: “Here, brother Brigham, you seal this lady to me.” I sealed her to him. This was my own sister according to the flesh. Now, sisters, do not say, “I do not want a husband when I get up in the resurrection.” You do not know what you will want. I tell this so that you can get the idea. If in the resurrection you really want to be single and alone, and live so forever and ever, and be made servants, while others receive the highest order of intelligence and are bringing worlds into existence, you can have the privilege. They who will be exalted cannot perform all the labor, they must have servants and you can be servants to them.

The female portion of the human family have blessings promised to them if they are faithful. I do not know what the Lord could have put upon women worse than he did upon Mother Eve, where he told her: “Thy desire shall be to thy husband.” Continually wanting the husband. “If you go to work, my eyes follow you; if you go away in the carriage, my eyes follow you, and I like you and I love you; I delight in you, and I desire you should have nobody else.” I do not know that the Lord could have put upon women anything worse than this, I do not blame them for having these feelings. I would be glad if it were otherwise. Says a woman of faith and knowledge, “I will make the best of it; it is a law that man shall rule over me; his word is my law, and I must obey him; he must rule over me; this is upon me and I will submit to it,” and by so doing she has promises that others do not have.

The world of mankind, the world of man, not of woman, is full of iniquity. What are they doing? They are destroying every truth that they can; they are destroying all innocence that they can. Priest and people, governors, magistrates, kings, potentates, presidents, the political world and the religious world, are on the highroad to eternal misery. There are exceptions. There are honest persons wherever there is an honest principle. If the men of the world would be honest and full of good works, you would not see them living as they do. And the women are entitled to the kingdom, they are entitled to the glory, they are entitled to exaltation if they are obedient to the Priesthood, and they will be crowned with those that are crowned.

When Father Adam came to assist in organizing the earth out of the crude material that was found, an earth was made upon which the children of men could live. After the earth was prepared Father Adam came and stayed here, and there was a woman brought to him. Now I am telling you something that many of you know, it has been told to you, and the brethren and sisters should understand it. There was a certain woman brought to Father Adam whose name was Eve, because she was the first woman, and she was given to him to be his wife; I am not disposed to give any further knowledge concerning her at present. There is no doubt but that he left many companions. The great and glorious doctrine that pertains to this I have not time to dwell upon; neither should I at present if I had time. He understood this whole machinery or system before he came to this earth; and I hope my brethren and sisters will profit by what I have told them.

Now we have been administering the sacrament here to the people, the bread and the water. It is to refresh our minds and bring to our understanding the death and sufferings of our Savior. Is there any commandment with regard to this matter? Yes, there are laws concerning it. You take this Book [the Book of Doctrine and Covenants] and you will read here that the Saints are to meet together on the Sabbath day. It is what we call the first day of the week. No matter whether it is the Jewish Sabbath or not. I do not think there is anybody who can bring facts to prove which is the seventh day, or when Adam was put in the garden, or the day about which the Lord spoke to Moses. This matter is not very well known, so we call the day on which we rest and worship God, the first day of the week. This people called Latter-day Saints, are required by the revelations that the Lord has given, to assemble themselves together on this day. How many go riding or visiting, or go anywhere but to meeting, on the Sabbath day? It is probably not so here, but in Salt Lake City, as a general thing, Sunday is made a holiday for riding and visiting, &c. In this commandment we are required to come together and repent of our sins and confess our sins and partake of the bread and of the wine; or water, in commemoration of the death and sufferings of our Lord and Savior. I will ask the Latter-day Saints if you are entitled to these blessings unless you keep the Sabbath day. Now, what do you say? Why, every Latter-day Saint would answer we are not entitled to the blessing of partaking of the emblems, or symbols, of the body and the blood of Christ unless we observe his law. All the Latter-day Saints will answer this question with me, just as I do, because it is right. There is a great deal delivered to this people; they have received a great deal—those blessings pertaining to being baptized for the dead, celestial marriage and many others, and they should value them, and live so as to enjoy them.

There has been considerable said here with regard to the law of Tithing that we received years and years ago. Now, I venture to say, that if we except some very poor men and very poor women in the Church, who think they have paid their mites promptly and punctually, there is not a man that has paid his Tithing. Now, this may sound strange; for some think they have paid pretty well. To draw this matter out and show you how I feel upon the subject of Tithing, I have not time. But I will say a few words about some things that have been alluded to by my brethren who have spoken to you. The Lord requires one-tenth of that which he has given me; it is for me to pay the one-tenth of the increase of my flocks and of all that I have, and all the people should do the same. The question may arise, “What is to be done with the Tithing?” It is for the building of Temples to God; for the enlarging of the borders of Zion; sending Elders on missions to preach the Gospel and taking care of their families. By and by we shall have some Temples to go into, and we will receive our blessings, the blessings of heaven, by obedience to the doctrine of Tithing. We shall have Temples built throughout these mountains in the valleys of this Territory and the valleys of the next Territory, and finally, all through these mountains. We expect to build Temples in a great many valleys. We go to the endowment house, and before going, we get a re commendation from our Bishop that we have paid our Tithing. We wish it was so. I do not want to accuse the brethren; but if your consciences and my conscience does not accuse us, why, I will not accuse you. When you give a certificate or letter for a man to have a woman sealed to him, and he full of sin and iniquity, is not such a certificate false? If we inquire of such, “Do you want to have another wife sealed to you?” “Yes.” “Where is your wife?” “Why, she has left me.” “Why? Because you are so full of the devil that she cannot live with you, and the Bishop will give a certificate for you to get another.” They also want to be baptized for their dead friends when they have not paid their Tithing. I do not want to accuse anybody; but I do not think this to be right. If the Lord will receive the people, if the Lord will accept of their labors, and will honor and bless them, and say that their officiating for their dead friends shall be sealed in the heavens and it shall be recorded by his angel, and in the day of the resurrection it shall be accounted unto them for righteousness, I am willing, I have not a word to say against it.

Now, then, we have received these ordinances, the doctrine the Lord has revealed for the salvation of the dead; the doctrine that we have received for the exaltation of men and women, which I could tell you a great deal about if I had time; but there is only a little time and I want to say a few things to bring your minds directly to our present condition. You read in the Doctrine and Covenants with regard to the building up of the kingdom of God, the order of Enoch, &c. I am anxious in my feelings to get the Latter-day Saints to begin where the Lord wanted them to begin, when he commenced to build up this kingdom; that is that we are to submit ourselves to the direction of our Bishops, or men who shall be appointed, who shall dictate them in the things pertaining to life, so that they may be the means in the hands of the Lord of accomplishing the work that he requires at our hands. I had it in my mind to ask if we are not a slow, tardy people; but I would like to see the order of Enoch introduced. If I had the privilege that was legal, the legal right, I should have had some of the brethren and sisters organized together and bound with bonds that cannot be broken; but I cannot do this at present; for we desire to commence this on a foundation that cannot be broken up and destroyed.

Brethren, if you will start here and operate together in farming, in making cheese, in herding sheep and cattle and every other kind of work, and get a factory here and a cooperative store—I have been told there is no cooperative store here—get a good cooperative store, and operate together in sheep raising, storekeeping, manufacturing and everything else, no matter what it is, by and by, when we can plant ourselves upon a foundation that we cannot be broken up, we shall then proceed to arrange a family organization for which we are not yet quite prepared. You now, right here in this place, commence to carry on your business in a cooperative capacity. In every instance I could show every one of you what a great advantage would be gained in working together; I could reason it out here just how much advantage there is in cooperation in your lumbering and in your herding. You have men here, I suppose, who have had an arm shot off; they cannot go into the canyons and get out wood. Ano ther, perhaps, has had a leg cut off; he cannot run here and there like some of you; but he can do something; he will make a first-rate shopman, and at keeping books, perhaps, he will be one of the best. He cannot take the scythe and mow; he cannot attend to a threshing machine; he cannot go into the woods lumbering; he could not herd well—but he could go into the factory, and he can do many things. Well, we can do this and keep up cooperation, and, by and by, when we can, we will build up a city after the order of Enoch. And I will tell you, women will not be let into that city with Babylon upon their backs, nor men either. But we will make our own clothing, we will make our own fashions, we will do our own work. I can take fifty men who have not a cent, and if they would do as I would wish them to do, they would soon be worth their thousands, every one of them. We desire to go into this order. In it we would not lack means, we would always have something to sell, but seldom want to buy. This will be the case if we make our own clothes, &c.

Another thing I want you to observe in all these settlements, and it is one of the simplest things in nature; I want you to be united. If we should build up and organize a community, we would have to do it on the principle of oneness, and it is one of the simplest things I know of. A city of one hundred thousand or a million of people could be united into a perfect family, and they would work together as beautifully as the different parts of the carding machine work together. Why, we could organize millions into a family under the order of Enoch. Will you go into the cooperative system? Will you pay your Tithes? Will you take care of your hay? Bisbops, will you take care of the Tithes? I have scarcely seen a good stack of Tithing hay until within the last two years. Is this right, to let hay that is brought in as Tithing go to waste? “Well, but,” says one, “I don’t know what to do with it.” Go to work, and put it into a shape that it will last one year, five years, ten years; it will be wanted by and by. There is about sixteen thousand dollars, I learn from the trustees, of unpaid Tithing, in this valley. Go to work and build a meetinghouse, and then schoolhouses. Go to work and start some schools, and instead of going to parties to dance and indulge in this nonsense, go to school and study; have the girls go, and teach them chemistry, so that they can take any of these rocks and analyze them—tell the properties and what they are. I don’t suppose there is a man here who can tell these properties. The sciences can be learned without much difficulty. Instead of going “right and left, balance all, promenade,” go to work and teach yourselves something. Instead of having this folly, I want to have schools and entertain the minds of the people and draw them out to learn the arts and sciences. Send the old children to school and the young ones also; there is nothing I would like better than to learn chemistry, botany, geology, and mineralogy, so that I could tell what I walk on, the properties of the air I breathe, what I drink, &c.

I will say to you, my brethren and sisters, I bless you. I bless you according to the Priesthood that I hold and the keys thereof. I bless you in the name of Jesus Christ. Now will you live your religion? We had some talk yesterday about your President; I pray you, Mr. President, under brother Rich, to live your religion; and I pray the Saints to live their religion, and I do ask from day to day, in the name of Jesus Christ, and I direct the Latter-day Saints, to live their religion, and I pray you in Christ’s stead to live your religion so as to enjoy the spirit of it. Amen.

The Blessings of Joseph—The American Indians

Discourse by Elder Orson Pratt, delivered in the Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, Feb. 19, 1871.

I will call the attention of the congregation to a portion of the word of the Lord contained in the 33rd chapter of Deuteronomy, commencing at the 13th verse. What I am about to read is the word of the Lord through Moses. “And of Joseph he said, Blessed of the Lord be his land, for the precious things of heaven, for the dew, and for the deep that coucheth beneath, And for the precious fruits brought forth by the sun, and for the precious things put forth by the moon, And for the chief things of the ancient mountains, and for the precious things of the lasting hills, And for the precious things of the earth and the fullness thereof, and for the good will of him that dwelt in the bush: let the blessing come upon the head of Joseph, and upon the top of the head of him that was separated from his brethren. His glory is like the firstling of his bullock, and his horns are like the horns of unicorns: with them he shall push the people together to the ends of the earth: and they are the ten thousands of Ephraim, and they are the thousands of Manasseh.”

These words occurred to me after rising to my feet, as the blessing of Moses upon one of the tribes of Israel. The Latter-day Saints are aware that in ancient times men of God were led by the spirit of inspiration to bless with prophetic blessings. Such was the case in the days of Noah, such was the case in the days of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and such was the case in the days of Moses. Being prophets, the Lord inspired them to know and understand the future, to know what he intended to perform and accomplish on the earth. They understood by the spirit of prophecy the blessings that would come upon the righteous and the curses that would come upon the wicked. They understood that the Lord would bestow blessings bountifully upon those who would serve him and keep his commandments. Hence they predicted blessings upon them, not only of a spiritual nature but of a temporal nature, among which farms were given to them, kingdoms, thrones, and a great variety of blessings of a temporal nature were oftentimes conferred by the spirit of prophecy upon the descendants of those whom the Lord delighted in. Many prophecies are recorded in the Book of Deuteronomy, pertaining to the twelve tribes, among which were certain cursings if they did not keep the commandments of the Lord, and certain blessings inasmuch as they would keep his commandments. Indeed, six of the tribes of Israel, or men out of six tribes, representing six of the tribes, were commanded to go upon a certain mountain, and representatives out of the other six tribes were commanded to get upon another mountain. The representatives on one of these mountains were to pronounce blessings on conditions, while the others were to pronounce curses also on conditions. Israel were to be blessed in their basket and in their store; in their goings out and in their comings in; blessed with all the blessings of the earth in the land of Palestine; blessed with the comforts and consolations of the Spirit; with revelations, with prophets, with all the blessings that had been enjoyed by their forefathers in the days of their righteousness; but if they would not do this, the others upon the other hill were to curse them; they were to be cursed in their basket and in their store; in the increase of their fields and in their flocks; cursed with all the plagues of Egypt. Their enemies, though few in number, should come against them, and they, though many, should flee before them. They should be dispersed until the latter days. In the latter days the Lord would again stretch forth his hand and would bring them from all the nations of the earth, where they have been scattered, to their own land of Canaan.

Almost the last thing that Moses did among the children of Israel was to pronounce separate blessings upon each tribe, commencing with the firstborn, Reuben, taking them according to their ages, pronouncing a variety of blessings, spiritual and temporal, upon the twelve tribes, until he comes down to Joseph. The words which I have read were the blessings upon that tribe: “Blessed of the Lord be his land.” It was a temporal blessing then; it did not particularly have reference to those spiritual blessings that pertain to eternity, but it was a temporal blessing. “Blessed of the Lord be his land, for the precious things of the earth, the precious things of heaven, for the dew and for the deep that coucheth beneath. For the precious fruits brought forth by the sun, and for the precious things put forth by the moon; and the chief things of the ancient mountains, and for the precious things of the everlasting hills, and for the precious things of the earth and the fullness thereof, and for the good will of him that dwelt in the bush; let the blessing come upon the head of Joseph and upon the top of the head of him that was separated from his brethren.” You perceive, then, that this blessing was of a temporal nature.

Now when Joseph entered the land of Palestine he received an inheritance with the rest of the tribes. Both Ephraim and Manasseh received their inheritances; one of them received an inheritance on the east side of Jordan; the other, Ephraim, received an inheritance on the west of Jordan in connection with the rest of the tribes. “Blessed of the Lord be his land;” and among the precious things that were to be given were the precious things of the earth and the fullness thereof. What are we to understand by the fullness of the earth? I understand it to mean the products of all climates. Palestine is in the temperate zone, and therefore produces fruits that are adapted to a temperate climate. Let me refer you to the blessing of Jacob, the father of Joseph, upon Ephraim and Manasseh. In the 48th chapter of Genesis we read that Joseph brought up his two sons to Jacob to receive his last blessing. Jacob was blind, and when Ephraim and Manasseh were brought before him, Manasseh being the oldest was brought before the old Patriarch in such a way that the old man would place his right hand upon the firstborn, and his left hand upon the younger, that the firstborn might receive the prophetic blessing. Being guided by the spirit of inspiration, the old Patriarch crossed his hands and laid his right hand upon the head of the younger and his left hand upon the head of Manasseh and pronounced his blessing. He said that these two sons of Joseph should become a great people and a multitude of nations in the midst of the earth. Now it would be very difficult for us to find the descendants of Joseph—a multitude of nations—anywhere on the eastern continent. If we go among the nations of Asia, the Chinese, the Hindoos, &c., we can trace back their history to early ages, and there is no evidence that they are the descendants of Joseph. If we go into the northern portions of Europe, to Russia and other countries, we find no evidence that they are his descendants. If we go among the various eastern nations, we have no evidence that they are the descendants of him. I don’t know any portion of the eastern continent, in Europe, Asia, Africa, or Australia, where we can find a multitude of nations. When we come to America, we have a large country, with every variety of climate, temperate, torrid and arctic, and every variety of temperature. Jacob not only predicted that his tribe should become a great people—a multitude of nations—but that they should be blest in a variety of ways.

The great Prophet Jacob also pronounced these remarkable words uttered by inspiration: “Joseph is a fruitful bough, even a fruitful bough by a well, for his branches shall run over the wall.” What a great prediction about the tribe of Joseph!

There are several things to be understood in the prophecy. First, he should become a multitude of nations. We understand what this means. In the second place, his branches should run over the wall. Now what does this mean? The Lord in ancient times had a meaning for everything. It means that his tribe should become so numerous that they would take up more room than one small inheritance in Canaan, that they would spread out and go to some land at a great distance. You recollect that the Lord told Abraham to get upon a hill and look forth to the east and then to the west, then to the north and to the south. For, saith the Lord, “All the land thou seest I will give to thee and thy seed for an inheritance, for an everlasting possession.” That was the blessing conferred upon one of Jacob’s progenitors. Isaac had also the same blessing. Here Jacob wrestled with God or the angel near to the brook Jabbok. It will be recollected how Jacob sent his wives over the brook and stayed behind to wrestle with the angel, and they wrestled all night just as two men would wrestle. The angel not being able to overpower him by physical strength alone, but by miracle, touched the hollow of Jacob’s thigh and it was withered, and in this way he was able to overpower him. The Lord pronounced great blessings upon his head, greater than those of his progenitors. This is the time that some say that Jacob received his conversion; but he did not repent of having more wives than one. What! Was he a holy man of God and had more wives than one? Yes; and instead of turning them off, he arranged them to go and meet his brother Esau; the first wife and her children, then the second with hers, and so on, and when Esau saw them, he inquired who they were? Jacob replied, “These are they whom God hath graciously given to thy servant.” We have deviated a little from our subject, but we will return to it.

Joseph’s peculiar blessing, which I have just read to you, was that he should enjoy possessions above Jacob’s progenitors to the utmost bounds of the everlasting hills. This would seem to indicate a very distant land, from Palestine. The old patriarch said, “I bestow this blessing upon the head of him that was separated from his brethren.” Of course such a land must be large to contain a multitude of nations. It was to be adapted to the fruits, vegetables and grains of all climates; the precious things of the earth and the fullness thereof. We may learn then, from these facts, that the land was at a great distance from the land of Palestine. Where can we find a people who fulfil the terms of this prophecy as well as the American Indians? Here are a great number of nations. Go into the arctic regions and you find nations; in British America you find them scattered over a vast area of country; in the United States there is a multitude of nations, being driven west by the white men. Go farther south into the provinces of Mexico; go through the isthmus into South America and you will find still numerous nations of Indians. They have different languages, but the roots of each language indicate that they have all sprung from the same origin. How do you know that they have sprung from one race of people, or are of the same origin? Because learned men have studied into the antiquities of our country. Societies have been formed, among which is the Antiquarian Society, afterwards called the Etymological Society, which discovered that the roots of all the different languages have a very close resemblance to the Hebrew. But there is another thing that will prove still further their origin. When our fathers first settled the New England States and penetrated into the country they discovered that the Indians had certain rites and ceremonies which they observed, such as the new moon sacrifices, &c. From these proofs we conclude that they must have been descendants of the Israelitish nation. Lord Kingsbury, a man who was once very wealthy, expended about 80,000 pounds sterling in getting up nine large volumes giving accounts of these antiquities. He had agents searching in all the large libraries of Europe. Imagine the immense amount of manuscript writing, so voluminous as to fill nine large volumes! In these volumes he brought forth all the testimony in his power to prove that the American Indians were Israelites. But there was one thing that he could not understand; he found that the ancient Indians understood something about the Lord Jesus Christ. If he had consulted the Book of Mormon, he would have known why they knew about Jesus.

Let me here observe that the Book of Mormon, which has been published for forty-one years, gives an account of the first settlement of this country by these inhabitants, showing that they are not the ten tribes, but they are the descendants of one tribe, and they came to this country about six hundred years before Christ. The people when they first landed consisted of only two or three families; and instead of landing on the northwest coast of North America, they landed on the southwest coast of South America. A history of the escape of these few families from Jerusalem is contained in the Book of Mormon. How they traveled on the eastern borders of the Red Sea, and how they built a vessel or ship to cross the Indian and Pacific oceans; they were instructed how to build this vessel, and when they had embarked on it, they were brought by the special direction of the Lord to this land. He guided their vessel, or instructed them how to guide it, until they landed on the west coast of South America. One portion had become wicked and had apostatized from the religion of their fathers and sought the destruction of the righteous portion. The righteous portion of these families left the first settlement and traveled several hundred miles to the north, and formed settlements, and became a powerful nation. The others—the wicked portion—became a powerful nation. About fifty years before Christ the Nephites, as the righteous portion was called, sent forth numerous colonies into North America. Among these colonies there was one that came and settled on the southern borders of our great lakes. Both nations became very wicked, notwithstanding their prophets foretold great destruction if they would not repent. They predicted that at the time of the crucifixion darkness, earthquakes and great destruction of cities should transpire. While they were standing near their temple, conversing about this sign which had been given them of the crucifixion, they heard a voice in the heavens, and they looked up and beheld their Messiah descending. He came down and stood in their midst, and showed them the scars in his hands and feet, and in his side; and after visiting them for several days successively, he told them that he was going to the ten tribes of Israel. He also chose twelve disciples to administer his Gospel on this land and for the ministration of the Holy Ghost. The twelve disciples went forth and preached the Gospel, commencing in South America, and then went into North America, until all the people both in North and South America were converted, receiving the principles of the Gospel—namely, baptism, and the laying on of hands, and all the other principles as preached in our day. About two centuries after this, the Nephites fell into wickedness: the Lamanites, who dwelt in the southern portion of South America, also apostatized; and they began to wage war with the Nephites, who were their enemies; and being exceedingly strong they drove all the Nephites out of South America and followed them with their armies up into the north country, and finally overpowered them. They were gathered together south of the great lakes in the country which we term New York. The Lord ordered that the plates on which the records were kept should be hid, and one of the prophets knowing that it was the last struggle of his nation, hid them in the hill Cumorah, in Ontario county, in the State of New York, with the exception of those which his son Moroni, who was also a prophet, had. The last account that we have is furnished to us by Moroni, who states that, after keeping himself hid for several years, and being commanded of the Lord, he hid away the records, about 420 years after Christ. Thus, I have given you a very brief history of the settlement of our country.

In the year 1827 Joseph Smith, then a young man, took these records from their place of concealment, and, by the aid of the Urim and Thummim, translated them. In the presence of three witnesses, the angel took the plates and turned them over, leaf after leaf, showing them the characters thereon, and told them that they had been translated correctly. They were also seen by eight other men, making twelve men in all, including himself. Joseph Smith being inspired from on high, was commanded to organize a Church, which he did on the 6th day of April, 1830. It was composed at first of six members. Witnesses and preachers went forth into the States of this Union to preach the Gospel, and many were led to join the Church. It has steadily progressed since the time of its first organization until the present. The Saints were driven from State to State until they finally crossed the Missouri River and came to these valleys. Thus I have endeavored to give you a very brief sketch of the organization of this Church, and it has been very brief indeed.

I see the time is up; much more might be said from the holy Bible in relation to this great Latter-day work, but time will not permit. Amen.