Melchizedek and Aaronic Priesthoods—Their Peculiarities and Jurisdiction—Building Temples—Gathering to Be Sanctified—Union and Blessing Its Results

Discourse by Elder Orson Pratt, delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, Sunday Afternoon, May 13, 1877.

I will read a few passages contained in a modern revelation, given through the prophet Joseph Smith, on the 22nd and the 23rd days of September, 1832—

And the Lord confirmed a priesthood also upon Aaron and his seed, throughout all their generations, which priesthood also continueth and abideth forever with the priesthood which is after the holiest order of God.

And this greater priesthood administereth the gospel and holdeth the key of the mysteries of the kingdom, even the key of the knowledge of God.

Therefore, in the ordinances thereof, the power of godliness is manifested.

And without the ordinances thereof, and the authority of the priesthood, the power of godliness is not manifest unto men in the flesh;

For without this no man can see the face of God, even the Father, and live.

Now this Moses plainly taught to the children of Israel in the wilderness, and sought diligently to sanctify his people that they might behold the face of God;

But they hardened their hearts and could not endure his presence; therefore, the Lord in his wrath, for his anger was kindled against them, swore that they should not enter into his rest while in the wilderness, which rest is the fullness of his glory.

Therefore, he took Moses out of their midst, and the holy priesthood also;

And the lesser priesthood continued, which priesthood holdeth the key of the ministering of angels and the preparatory gospel.

It is not my design this morning to speak very lengthily, but it is my great desire, during the time I may speak, that I may have the faith and prayers of all the Latter-day Saints present, and of every person who desires to be edified and instructed. It is also my desire that I may have a portion of the Holy Spirit to rest upon me, that the words which I may speak may be instructive and edifying to those who hear. That is the object of speaking, the object of hearing—to be edified.

From the passages I have read, we learn that God, in all ages of the world, has had a Priesthood on the earth, that is, a Priesthood after the order of his Son, sometimes called the Priesthood after the order of Melchizedek; and that connected with this Priesthood, in all dispensations, there is a lesser Priesthood, called sometimes the Priesthood after the order of Aaron, or the Aaronic Priesthood, which is merely an appendage to the higher Priesthood of Melchizedek; in other words, it is included in the Priesthood of Melchizedek. It is more especially called the lesser Priesthood, because those holding it, and being in possession of no higher authority, can only obtain a certain portion or measure of the blessings that the Lord has in store for his people; it can proceed so far and no farther; it is limited in its nature, its power, its ordinances and its ministry. But when combined with the higher Priesthood after the order of Melchizedek, it then can receive all the blessings that are ordained of the Almighty to be bestowed upon his people in any dispensation. Like unto the Melchizedek Priesthood, it is everlasting in its nature, not given for time alone, to be exercised here for a few years upon the earth and then cease, but it continues forever, with the Priesthood which is after the holiest order of God.

The higher Priesthood after the order of the Son of God, we are told, in a modern revelation, holds the power to commune with the Church of the Firstborn that are in heaven, and that too not in a spiritual sense alone; or, as some would infer, to commune with them without receiving any revelation, to commune with them without beholding their personages; but in the literal sense, even the same as one man communes with another. It holds not only the power of the ministration of holy angels to be seen personally, but also the power of beholding the face of God the Father, that through the power and manifestations of the spirit of God and of his angels we may be prepared to enter into the presence of God the Father in the world to come, and enjoy continual communion with him, and be crowned with the glory of the celestial kingdom, to stand in our place and calling to all eternity, in connection with all those who hold the Priesthood in the eternal worlds.

The Priesthood of Aaron, being an appendage to the higher Priesthood, has power to administer in temporal ordinances, such as that of baptism for remission of sins, the administration of the Lord’s Supper, and in attending to temporal things for the benefit of the people of God. Among the privileges that are granted to this lesser Priesthood is to hold communion with holy angels that may be sent down from heaven.

In the early days of this Church the Lord, through a revelation, set forth the various appendages of the higher Priesthood, the duties of its several offices and their callings; also how they should officiate, and what ordinances they were permitted to administer, and what was not permitted to be administered by those holding it.

It seems that since these revelations were given, the Church, during its history, has passed through a variety of circumstances, wherein a perfect organization according to the rules and laws, as laid down by modern revelation, has not been entered into. Circumstances always did more or less to alter the condition of the people. Some, by virtue of their Priesthood have officiated, without being set apart, in certain callings that pertain to those who should be selected and set apart for that purpose. Let me here say, for the benefit of those who have not studied the Doctrine and Covenants of the Church, that if we have literal descendants of Aaron, they have the birthright, through their obedience to the Gospel of the Son of God, to the bishopric, which pertains to the lesser Priesthood. It is the presiding authority over the lesser Priesthood; they have the right to claim it, and to all the keys and powers pertaining to it, they have the right to be ordained and set apart to that calling and to officiate therein, and that too without the aid of two counselors. That is what we are taught in modern revelation. But as we have none at present, to our knowledge, that belong to the seed of Aaron, that has the right to this by lineage, the Lord has pointed out that those who are ordained to the higher Priesthood have the right, by virtue of this higher authority, to administer, when set apart by the First Presidency, or under their direction and according to their instruction, as Bishops to officiate in the Presidency of the lower Priesthood. This order has been followed ever since the Lord revealed these things to this Church. A Bishop must be ordained to the high Priesthood, and by authority of that Priesthood he may be set apart as a Bishop to preside over the lesser Priesthood, to exercise the functions thereof, with the exception of one condition, that is, he must have two counselors ordained from among the high Priests of the Church. These three persons must officiate in relation to all the ordinances that pertain to the lesser Priesthood, and to administer in temporal things, having a knowledge of them by the inspiration of the Holy Ghost, as we are taught in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants.

Now what I wish to say in relation to this matter is this—In some portions of our Territory, instead of this organization having been carried out in all its perfection, we have acted, in some few instances, for the time being, by appointing a person to take that position, when he had not been previously set apart to that special calling. We might refer to persons in some few of our settlements, both north and south, who have acted as Bishops by virtue of appointment only, and not ordination.

I understand now that the Spirit of the Lord has manifested unto the President of the Church, who is the proper authority, for the Twelve to go forth and set in order and organize more perfectly the various Branches that are located throughout all the Territory, and in the adjoining Territories. And no doubt those few who are acting in the Bishopric without being ordained will receive their ordination, and there may be many changes, in order to introduce, in all its perfection, as far as we have knowledge and understanding, a more perfect organization throughout the Church in these mountains.

The object of this perfect organization is that we may be entitled to greater blessings therefrom; that we may be entitled to a greater fullness of the Holy Spirit; that everything may be dictated according to the mind and will of God, not only in spiritual things, but also in regard to our temporal matters; and also that every person may know his place, that his duties may be assigned to him, and by knowing what is required, that all may the more diligently seek after the Holy Ghost to direct them in their positions and callings, and have more faith, more assurance before God, to obtain confidence before the heavens, and before the brethren, in order that their ministry may benefit the people. You are well aware that we have been taught, for these many years, the great necessity of establishing a union in the midst of this people. Although we are the most united people upon the face of the earth, of which we have any knowledge, yet we are far from that perfection of unity which should characterize the Saints of the Most High God.

I can see, in this order which the President has laid before us, a beauty, a consistency, a plan which the Lord has revealed that will entitle the Latter-day Saints to greater blessings and privileges through which that union will be brought about which we have so long desired in our hearts.

We preach and declare to all people that God has raised up a kingdom to prepare the way before the coming of Christ. We declare to all men, wherever our missionaries go, that this is the grand preparation for the coming of our Lord and Savior to reign on the earth. When he does come, that part of the prayer which he taught us to utter will be fulfilled, namely, “Thy will be done on earth as it is done in heaven.” Were we permitted to have the veil removed, according to the hymn just sung, namely that “the veil should be rent in twain,” and were we to behold the order that exists in yonder heavens in the midst of celestial hosts, we should there see a perfect union—no dissensions, no bitterness of feeling, no difference of ideas or opinion in regard to their duties, but all understanding as one, and all moving as one body to fulfill and accomplish the purposes of Jehovah.

Now, his will must be done on the earth as is done in heaven, in order that that prayer which has been offered up by his people ever since it was revealed, may be fulfilled to the very letter. Hence the great necessity of the Latter-day Saints preparing themselves by being united, even as the hosts of heaven are. For remember that the Apostle Paul says, “that in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on the earth; even in him.” If then the General Assembly and Church of the Firstborn are to come down out of heaven to dwell on the earth, how important it is that the Latter-day Saints should be prepared to join this grand company, being united as they are, having no feeling of dissension, no division in their midst, no evil or corruption of any nature; no covetousness, no feeling of individuality in regard to wealth, but having all upon the altar ready to subserve the purposes of the Most high in building up his kingdom upon the earth.

This, therefore, is the purpose of this more perfect organization which is being introduced among the Branches throughout the Territory of Utah; it is to entitle us to these great blessings promised in the word of God. It is not only to build a Temple, but many Temples, as the case may require. This is not the only duty of the Latter-day Saints, although this duty is one of great importance. But then is it not of still greater importance that we, as a people, when these Temples are built, and finished, and dedicated, should be prepared to enter into the courts of the same, to go in there with a perfect oneness and union of feeling? Can we expect in these holy Temples, which are to be dedicated and set apart to the name of the Lord, to receive the blessings promised in Temples, unless we are a people of one heart and one mind? I think not. I read, in one of the revelations contained in this book of Doctrine and Covenants, that when God commanded a Temple to be built in Jackson County, in the State of Missouri, he made this promise—“Wherefore,” said the Lord, “I commanded the people of that county, and the people around about in the settlements, to build a Temple unto my name, and inasmuch as my people build a Temple unto my name, and suffer no unclean thing to enter into it, that it be not defiled, behold I will come into it; I will be there, and my glory shall be there. And it shall come to pass, that every soul that shall come into that Temple, who is pure in heart, shall see my face.” This is one of the promises and privileges pertaining to the High Priesthood, after the order of the Son of God. This is one of the blessings, ordained for all dispensations from the earliest period to the closing up of the last dispensation of the fullness of times; that is, in all those dispensations the righteous were to be blessed with the powers, and keys, and blessings of the High Priesthood. For this purpose, they were to build Temples to his name. In these Temples, if they were pure in heart, they would have this privilege of beholding the face of God and without this Priesthood and the ordinances thereof, no man in the flesh could behold the face of God the Father and live.

We have accomplished a great work thus far. I feel, in connection with my brethren, to rejoice exceedingly in the work that the Lord our God has performed in the earth, through us his people. Truly he hath fulfilled that prophecy given in 1830—“The decree hath gone forth from the Father, that mine elect shall be gathered in from the four quarters of the earth to one place upon the face of the land.” This revelation was given before there was any gathering of the Latter-day Saints. You are my witnesses, and you are also witnesses to yourselves that the Lord has fulfilled this to the very letter. His elect from the four winds have come by thousands, and by tens of thousands, and have gathered to one place upon the face of this land. What has been the object of this gathering? It is to learn more perfectly of the ways of God, which we could not have learned in a scattered condition; in our native countries, while mixed up with the wicked and self-righteous. We are now partly isolated; and we have come from the ends of the earth, that by our united faith we may accomplish that which we could not have done by our own individual faith alone.

By and by, when this people shall have sanctified themselves before the Lord, and organized according to the laws and commandments of God, having been taught by the inspiration of the Holy Ghost, and by his servants that minister in their midst, carrying out the counsels and teachings they receive, they will become like unto one body, as it is written in the parable contained in the Book of Mormon, that the Lord will prune the vineyard, or take some of the branches away and graft them into another branch, etc.; he will make a change of the branches; he will prune the trees and dig about them, that the roots and the tops thereof may be kept equal. Understand that the roots and the tops thereof shall be made equal, so that the tops and branches may not overcome the roots by taking strength unto themselves. Why? That the tree may bring forth that fruit which is the most precious unto the Lord.

Therefore he is gathering us here, that we may become like unto one body, being sanctified, and become, as another revelation says, “as fair as the sun, as clear as the moon, that the banners of my people may be terrible unto all the nations of the earth.” Why terrible? Because of the power of the Lord which will be in the midst of his people, because of the manifestations of heaven unto his people, because the nations will hear that God is indeed in the midst of Zion. They will hear all these things, and the wicked will fear and tremble. They will fear because of their iniquity; fear and tremble, because of their wickedness; fear and tremble, because they have supported all manner of wickedness and corruption, division and strife, and abominations of every kind in their midst. Therefore restfulness will seize upon them, and they will know of a surety that the Lord God is in the midst of the people of Zion, that his power is there, that his spirit is there, and that he manifests himself there in great glory. Amen.

The Lord Rules—The Hand of God in Persecution—The Gospel Embraces All Truth—No Need of Worry, the Lord Will Deal Out Justice—Joseph Slain for the Gospel—The Dissatisfied Will Be Satisfied—Full of Blessing

Discourse by President Brigham Young, delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, Sunday Afternoon, May 6, 1877, after Addresses by Elders Orson Pratt and Geo. Q. Cannon.

I take the liberty of saying a few words on this occasion to both Saints and sinners. That expression brings to my mind at once—Where are the Saints? And who are they? And who are the sinners? We are all sinners; but there is quite a portion of the congregation who are trying to be Saints. For those who profess to be Saints I have a few texts of Scripture. With regard to those who believe the truth and desire to do it; to all who wish to live and preserve yourselves in the truth, in the love of God, I wish to say, they whom God loves he chastens. This is so, whether we believe it or not. If we have not received chastisement, we receive not that witness, that assurance, to testify to us that we love him. Another text of Scripture: The wicked are a rod in the hand of God to chasten his people. If the Lord loves us and we love him, we may expect to be chastened; and it is not joyous at the time of receiving the chastisement; it is grievous; but if we are exercised by grace and the spirit of truth, it will yield the peaceable fruits of righteousness.

I wish to whisper in the ears of the Latter-day Saints, I mean those who profess to be Saints, Know ye that the Lord reigns, and that the hearts of all living are in his hands. He turns the hearts of the children of men as the rivers of waters are turned. He rules in the armies of heaven, and does his pleasure upon the earth. When he wills, no man can hinder it; when he is disposed to open the door, it is not in the power of man to shut it; and when he closes the door it is not in the power of man to open it. Remember this, Latter-day Saints, and all the Christian world, the Pagan, Infidel and Jewish world, and everybody in the world; and hearken, O ye nations of the earth, and know ye that God lives, that he has spoken from the heavens, and has sent forth his everlasting Gospel to the children of men, that through obedience to the same they may be saved; and if they reject this message they will be damned. We cannot help it, it is not our business, it is not our doctrine, it is the doctrine of him whom we serve, of him whom we obey, of him who holds us in existence, who gives us breath and being, and we have a right to believe in Him, to love and serve him and to build up and establish his kingdom; and we are doing it.

If I were to tell you one half of the things that I know in many particulars it would astonish the halfhearted who have but little or no faith, and who do not understand the workings of the providences of God among the children of men. But as to the persecution, it is nothing at all, neither one way nor another, only to purify the Saints and prepare the nations for the good or evil, for the Lord Almighty to send forth his judgments to cleanse the earth, to sanctify it, and to justify the righteous and condemn the guilty, and to prepare the way for the coming of the Son of Man. I wish to say to you, to those who are in the truth, as well as to those who are out of the truth, if we did not have to bear the iron hand of persecution, the principles we believe in, which attract the attention of the good and the evil upon the earth and which occupy so many tongues and circumscribe their philosophy, would be embraced by thousands who are now indifferent to them. The evildoer would crowd upon our borders; and we have plenty of them now without receiving any more. They would crowd into this Church. And this is the reason why brother George Q. Cannon says, he is pleased and rejoiced because of this persecution. We should be satisfied with it, we should acknowledge the hand of God in it, and say: The will of the Lord be done and not ours. By closely watching the Latter-day Saints, and seeing that they are kept in the line of their duty by using this kind of a rod, it prevents others from coming that would affect us more than they can who are outside of this Church. There is not one man in this city nor in the Territory who hates the truth and the Latter-day Saints, whose influence I dread, no, not even the hundredth part, as I do a smooth, slick hypocrite who professes to be a Latter-day Saint. The former cannot sow the seeds of infidelity and unbelief in the hearts of the people; but the latter can.

I wish to say to all the people, The principles of the Gospel that God has revealed from the heavens to the children of men upon the earth are worthy the acceptation of the wise, the pure and the just. There is no true philosophy in existence which is not embraced in the Gospel, it belongs to the Gospel, it is a part of the Gospel. The philosophy of the heavens and the earth, of the worlds that are, that were, and that are yet to come into existence, is all in the Gospel that we have embraced. Every true philosopher, so far as he understands the principles of truth, has so much of the Gospel, and so far he is a Latter-day Saint, whether he knows it or not. Our Father, the great God, is the author of the sciences, he is the great mechanic, he is the systematizer of all things, he plans and devises all things, and every particle of knowledge which man has in his possession is the gift of God, whether they consider it divine, or whether it is the wisdom of man; it belongs to God, and he has bestowed it upon us, his children dwelling here upon the earth.

We take up the principles or ordinances of the house of God, and when we set them before the people, who would like to believe them? Ask the world of mankind, the heathen world, if there is one doctrine or principle in all these which is not good for man to receive. If we could find such a place as an angelic world, we might ask its inhabitants if we had embraced in our faith a single principle not good for them. Even they would not find an idea, a doctrine or a principle but what every person would say, respecting it: “It is just as good as we could ask for.” For the principles of the Gospel are calculated to purify the heart, the hands, the mouth, the brain, and every act of the children of men, and to prepare them to live with perfect and holy beings. These are principles worth seeking for, they are worth living for, they are worth dying for. As to the struggle that is going on between the Latter-day Saints and the world, have we any struggle with them? No. Have we any contention? No, not in the least. Have we any battle to fight? No, none at all. Are we to marshal our armies to contend against them? No. Here are the words of truth; we go forth and declare them to the ends of the earth; it is our mission and all we have to do. They may war against us, they may marshal their forces and their armies. God rules, I fear them not. If I preserve myself in the truth, I am all right. With the principles that these Latter-day Saints believe in, if we had our own way, and were not followed up by these blessed scoundrels, would we have any grog shops? No! Would we permit men to take the name of the Lord in vain? No. If we could use that moral influence we would stop all drinking, swearing, stealing, and Sabbath breaking, and speaking evil one of another; and we would have no dishonest men; we would have all men do that which is right before the Lord. But no, we must be followed up. That is all right, perfectly right. Every step we take and every move we make must be scanned by the devil to see if it is right. You will excuse the expression. He is watching closely to see if we live our religion. And he says: “Now, Latter-day Saints, are you not ashamed whenever you do anything that is naughty?” and tries to discourage them, that they may turn away from the truth. What should this do for us? Should it not cause us to refrain from all wrong, and teach us to do better, even this the chastisement of the devil?

We need not worry about this, that or the other, not in the least; it is for us to serve the Lord, and see that we do his will. And so far as persecution and the killing of the Prophets are concerned, whether of ancient or of modern times, even Joseph and Hyrum Smith, and others of the Saints, men, women and children, as they have done, we do not expect that the perpetrators of these deeds will be brought to justice; not in the least, until the Lord sits upon the case and deals out justice to them. The cry has been against the Prophets of every age, against the Apostles and against Jesus himself, and against all those who have ever preached the truth, and why? Because the systems of the world are errors; while the Gospel is true, it stands alone, it is as firm as the everlasting mountains; the storms may beat upon it, and it is there. But how is it with those who are jealous of us and who oppose us? We hear some of them who profess Christianity crying, “Come to Jesus,” “Come to Jesus,” etc. What is there of it? It is so much nonsense. If Jesus were in their midst today, they would kick him out; for they did so to his servants. Suppose the Apostle Paul, or Peter, in fact any of the Apostles were to get into their chapels, and were to preach from their pulpits their doctrine which they preached when upon the earth, what do you think they would do to them? They would take them and lead them out of doors, saying, “We will not have any such hypocrites and false Prophets as you are in our midst.”

There is once in a while a good honest man who professes to preach the truth, and when he does preach, it amounts to this: “My brethren, we think we are Christians, we are believers in the word of God; but I tell you if the Apostles were here today we would not receive them.” That is what these good, honest preachers would say, and a few do say it to their congregations.

A false principle, a false theory, whether in mechanism or philosophy, requires much argument and superior talent to sustain it, but when the truth is presented it commends itself to the understanding of the people so readily that it requires no great amount of learning to substantiate it, nor much skill to declare it to the honest who want truth, and it remains firm and sound.

Forty-five years ago they were determined to kill the Prophet Joseph. I have lain upon the floor scores and scores of nights ready to receive the mob who sought his life. This persecution commenced with a little neighborhood, then a town, then a county, then a State, and then the people of the United States; and by and by other nations will be just as bitter towards us, and the doctrines we preach as many of the people of our own nation now are. They will struggle and strive, and plan and devise, saying, Let us take this course, and that course; and they will struggle until they will come to a stop as though they were against a mountain of solid rock. They will do all they can to break us up, and even destroy us; this has been the case now for the last forty-five years. Joseph Smith had forty-seven law suits, and I was with him through the most of them, and never was the first thing proved against him; he was never guilty of the first violation of the law or of good order. And when Governor Ford asked him to go to prison, as the mob were so enraged that he could not insure his life, that he might be safe until he returned from Nauvoo, he said: “I will pledge you the faith of the State of Illinois for your safety.” But as soon as he was gone, the mob murdered both Joseph and his brother Hyrum, in the jail. That was to be so. I heard Joseph say many a time, “I should not live until I am forty years of age.” The spring before he was killed—his death occurred the 27th of June, 1844—he hurried off the first Elders of the Church. All right, I thought then, and I think so now. It is all in the hands of God. They killed Joseph, and what for? For the Gospel’s sake. It was for no evil, for I was well acquainted with him. He testified to the truth, he sealed his testimony with his blood. Whether we believe in blood atonement or not, the Lord so ordered it, that Joseph, as well as others of the Prophets, sealed their testimony with their blood.

I said here last Sabbath, that, if the people of this government are not satisfied with what they have already passed through this side of twenty years past, “Wait a little longer, and they will be perfectly satisfied with blood.” They shed the blood of the innocent; if they are not satisfied with the blood they have shed of each other, wait a little while and they will shed each other’s blood to their full satisfaction. The Lord has spoken it, and we have nothing to do with it. If we could, we would hide ourselves away from the scenes that will take place; but this we cannot do. But wait a little longer, and the people of this nation, as well as others, will have blood till they are satisfied with shedding the blood of each other. This is the prediction of the ancient Prophets, and has been confirmed unto us through his servant Joseph. The people are in the hands of God, he will rule all things and deal justly with all mankind; but he will not suffer this wickedness to dwell on the earth; it must be cleansed. All that we need to concern ourselves about is to serve the Lord, to trust in him, so that we may be ready to receive his dealings upon the just and the unjust, in all his chastisements. Let us live up to the principles of the just, and God will continue to bless us and deliver us with the just.

If I had power, I certainly would bless the people with everything their hearts could wish if they would not sin. I would do, as I heard the mothers of some of my children say, that went with me to St. George this winter, that I indulged them in everything they wanted. Why? Because they never manifested a desire for anything wrong. And if it were in my power I would bless all the inhabitants of the earth, with everything in which they could glorify God, and purify their own hearts.

May God bless you. Amen.

The United Order—The Duty of the Priesthood—The Gospel not Communism—Teaching the People How to Live—Independence of Babylon—The Saints Will Continue to Spread—Unity of Purpose and Action, Will Bring Again Zion—Free Schools Criticized—Educational Status of Our Children

Discourse by President Brigham Young, delivered at the Semi-Annual Conference, Held in the Temple, at St. George, Friday Morning, April 6, 1877.

I would like to say a great deal during this Conference to the Latter-day Saints, but I shall be able to talk but little, and therefore when I do speak I wish you to listen, and this I believe all of you will do.

I think that, as a people, we are nearer alike in the sentiments and feelings of our hearts, than in our words. From the most excellent discourse which we have heard this morning from brother Cannon, I believe that the people might gather the idea that we shall be expected to divide our property equally one with another, and that this will constitute the United Order. I will give you my view, in as few words as possible with regard to this subject, which I will promise you are correct.

The Lord wishes and requires us to develop the ability within us, and to utilize the ability of these men, women and children called Latter-day Saints.

The most of the inhabitants of the earth are incapable of dictating and devising for themselves. In many instances there is reason for this, for they are opposed to that degree that for the lack of opportunity they are not able to develop the talents and ability that are within them. This is the condition of the people of most of the nations of the earth. All those who come out from the world, espousing the Gospel of Jesus, place themselves in a condition to be taught of him, but instead of teaching them personally, he has raised up his authorized teachers to do this work, and what does he expect of us to do? He requires, absolutely requires, of us to take these people who have named his name through baptism, and teach them how to live, and how to become healthy, wealthy and wise. This is our duty.

Supposing that the property of the whole community were divided today equally amongst all, what might we expect? Why a year from today we should need another division, for some would waste and squander it away, while others would add to their portion. The skill of building up and establishing the Zion of our God on the earth is to take the people and teach them how to take care of themselves and that which the Lord has entrusted to their care, and to use all that we command to glorify his holy name. This is the work of regenerating, of elevating mankind to the higher plane of the Gospel; in other words, of simply teaching them their duty.

With regard to our property, as I have told you many times, the pro perty which we inherit from our Heavenly Father is our time, and the power to choose in the disposition of the same. This is the real capital that is bequeathed unto us by our Heavenly Father; all the rest is what he may be pleased to add unto us. To direct, to counsel and to advise in the disposition of our time, pertains to our calling as God’s servants, according to the wisdom which he has given and will continue to give unto us as we seek it

Now, if we could take this people, in their present condition, and teach them how to sustain and maintain themselves and a little more, we would add to that which we already have; but to take what we have and divide amongst or give to people, without teaching them how to earn and produce, would be no more nor less than to introduce the means of reducing them to a state of poverty.

I do not wish for one moment to recognize the idea that in order to establish the United Order our property has to be divided equally among the people, to let them do what they please with it. But the idea is to get the people into the same state of unity in all things temporal, that we find ourselves in with regard to things spiritual. Then let those who possess the ability and wisdom direct the labors of those not so endowed, until they too develop the talents within them and in time acquire the same degree of ability.

What do you say to this doctrine? Is it right or wrong? [The congregation answered, “It is right.“]

We want to get at a correct understanding respecting all these matters which so materially concern us. What would be the first lesson necessary to teach the people, were we to commence to direct their labors to the great end of becoming of one heart and one mind in the Lord, of establishing Zion and being filled with the power of God? It would be to stop expending and lavishing upon our dear selves all needless adornments and to stop purchasing the importations of Babylon. We can ourselves produce everything necessary for our consumption, our wear, our convenience and comfort, right here at home. We can produce and manufacture the material necessary to beautify our lands, gardens and orchards; to beautify and furnish our houses, and to adorn the beautiful bodies which we inhabit without sending our means to France, to England and other countries for things which can a little better be made at home among ourselves. The material of which these cushions were made, which adorn the pulpits, were produced here. After it was taken from the sheep, it was manufactured at our Provo factory into the cloth you now see; and the material of which the silk trimmings were made, was raised, spun, and made up by some of our sisters in this Territory. We might exhibit to you handkerchiefs, dress patterns, and shawls, all of silk, made by our sisters out of the raw material produced here through the enterprise and industry of a few. These are only simple specimens of what can be done. Suppose I were to say, “Ladies, how do you like them?” Do you not think they would say, “Pretty well?” We can improve on what has been done, and we want you to do so. Plant out the mulberry tree, and raise the silk, and let your dresses, your shawls, your bonnets and your ribbons, and everything you use to clothe and adorn your bodies, be the workmanship of your own hands. Let the brethren take hold and carry out in every department the same principle of home manufacture until we shall be able to produce the materials, and make up every article necessary to clothe and adorn the body, from the crown of the head to the soles of the feet. Then we shall become a self-sustaining and growing people, and we shall have to do it. All this is in the elements in which we live, and we need the skill to utilize the elements to our growth and wealth, and this is true financiering.

We can now see the growth of the Latter-day Saints, and it is marvelous to us to see the multitude of little towns springing up here and there, and we are under the necessity of saying, Give us more room, for the older settlements are thickening up, and the people are spreading out and filling up new valleys continually. You can see the shoots putting forth and taking root; still the old stock is good, is alive and rapidly increasing.

It has been asked if we intend to settle more valleys. Why certainly we expect to fill the next valley and then the next, and the next, and so on. It has been the cry of late, through the columns of the newspapers, that the “Mormons” are going into Mexico! That is quite right, we calculate to go there. Are we going back to Jackson County? Yes. When? As soon as the way opens up. Are we all going? O no! Of course not. The country is not large enough to hold our present numbers. When we do return there, will there be any less remaining in these mountains than we number today? No, there may be a hundred then for every single one that there is now. It is folly in men to suppose that we are going to break up these our hard earned homes to make others in a new country. We intend to hold our own here, and also penetrate the north and the south, the east and the west, there to make others and to raise the ensign of truth. This is the work of God, that marvelous work and a wonder referred to by ancient men of God, who saw it in its incipiency, as a stone cut out of the mountains without hands, but which rolled and gathered strength and magnitude until it filled the whole earth. We will continue to grow, to increase and spread abroad, and the powers of earth and hell combined cannot hinder it. All who are found opposing God and his people will be swept away and their names be forgotten in the earth. As the Prophets Joseph and Hyrum were murdered, and as they massacred our brethren and sisters in Missouri, so they would have served us years and years ago, if they had had the power to do so. But the Lord Almighty has said, Thus far thou shalt go and no farther, and hence we are spared to carry on his work. We are in his hands, the nations of the earth are in his hands; he rules in the midst of the armies of heaven and executes his pleasure on the earth. The hearts of all living are in his hands and he turns them as the rivers of water are turned.

We have no business here other than to build up and establish the Zion of God. It must be done according to the will and law of God after that pattern and order by which Enoch built up and perfected the former-day Zion, which was taken away to heaven, hence the saying went abroad that Zion had fled. By and by it will come back again, and as Enoch prepared his people to be worthy of translation, so we through our faithfulness must prepare ourselves to meet Zion from above when it shall return to earth, and to abide the brightness and glory of its coming.

My brethren and sisters, I do really delight in hearing our brethren speak on this holy order of heaven. Unity of purpose and action, in carrying out the will of our Father, has been my theme all the day long; but I have continually plead with the Saints not to waste their substance upon the lust of the eye and the flesh, for that is contrary to the will and commandments of God. I wish to say that whoever have faith enough to inherit the celestial kingdom will find that their inheritances will be upon this earth. This earth is our home; by and by it will be sanctified and glorified, and become a fit dwelling place for the sanctified, and they will dwell upon it forever and ever. I will further say I labor for the earth, I never mean to be satisfied until the whole earth is yielded to Christ and his people. When brother George Q. tells us we should not labor for the earth and the things of this world, he means we should not labor with sinful motives, and to gratify the lusts of the flesh. But if we possessed the treasure of the Gentile world, could we not send our Elders to the ends of the earth, bearing the precious Gospel to all living? Could we not sustain their families during their absence? Could we not build Temple after Temple and otherwise hasten on the work of redemption? Yes. But keep the people in poverty and how are we to accomplish this great work? I say, let us gather and accumulate the things of the earth in the manner indicated by the Lord, and then devote it to God and the building up of his kingdom. What do you say to this doctrine, is it right or wrong? [The congregation said, “It is right.“] What little property I have I wish it to be devoted to the building up of Zion, and I suppose I have as much as any other man in the Church. I am always ready to receive and take care of the blessings that God showers upon me, and am always ready and willing to devote the same to the building up of his kingdom.

Many of you may have heard what certain journalists have had to say about Brigham Young being opposed to free schools. I am opposed to free education as much as I am opposed to taking away property from one man and giving it to another who knows not how to take care of it. But when you come to the fact, I will venture to say that I school ten children to every one that those do who complain so much of me. I now pay the school fees of a number of children who are either orphans or sons and daughters of poor people. But in aiding and blessing the poor I do not believe in allowing my charities to go through the hands of a set of robbers who pocket nine-tenths themselves, and give one-tenth to the poor. Therein is the difference between us; I am for the real act of doing and not saying. Would I encourage free schools by taxation? No! That is not in keeping with the nature of our work; we should be as one family, our hearts and hands united in the bonds of the everlasting covenant; our interests alike, our children receiving equal opportunities in the schoolroom and the college.

We have today, more children between the ages of 5 and 20 years, who can read and write, than any State or Territory of the Union of a corresponding number of inhabitants. This is not exactly sustained by the statistics published of a few of the States, but from what we know of them we believe it to be the fact.

On the whole we have as good schoolhouses as can be found, and it is our right to have better ones, and to excel in everything that is good.

As to my health I feel many times that I could not live an hour longer, but I mean to live just as long as I can. I know not how soon the messenger will call for me, but I calculate to die in the harness. Amen.

Dedicatory Prayer

By President Daniel H. Wells, delivered at the Temple of the Lord at St. George, on the Sixth Day of April, 1877, at 10 o’clock a.m.

Almighty and Everlasting God, our heavenly Father, thou who art the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob; the God of Moses, of David, of Solomon; the God and Father of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ; the God of Joseph and of Brigham, even the God of Israel; thou who art the Father of our spirits; it is to thee we approach this morning to worship and to offer up our dedicatory prayer in thanksgiving and praise for this offering, even a Temple which thou hast enabled thy people to rear unto thy most holy name.

We realize, our Father, that we are dependent upon thee, and that although we are shut out from thy presence, inheriting many weaknesses, and made subject to many temptations and sins, we are thy children, and as such we come before thee in the depths of humility, with broken hearts and contrite spirits, praying that thine indulgence, thy tender mercy and compassion may be extended toward us, and that thou wilt forgive everything that thine all-seeing and searching eye hath beheld amiss in us.

We thank thee, O Lord, that thy people, whom thou hast led to this distant land and whom thou hast preserved by thine own right arm, have been permitted to establish themselves in the homes which thou hast given them, and that, through thy continued blessings, they have been enabled to gather together the materials of which this building is composed, to put together and erect the same, even a Temple, which we dedicate and now consecrate to thee, that it may be holy unto thee, the Lord our God, for sacred and holy purposes, and that “the blessing, even life forevermore,” may be commanded here, from heaven, even from thy presence, and may flow through the ordinance which appertain unto thy holy place, unto us thy children. We pray that the blessings pertaining to our eternal salvation and to the establishing of thy kingdom upon this thine earth may be poured out upon thy holy Priesthood and thy people, who shall worship and officiate in this thy holy House.

We dedicate and consecrate the foundation of this building upon which it stands. Cause, O Lord, that it may not give way nor yield in consequence of any destructive elements that may be in the soil, or may the nature of those elements be changed so as to become strengthening instead of weakening, that the same may always remain firm and sound.

We dedicate and consecrate the lower and upper walls of the building and the buttresses which support the same, and all the material—the stone, the lime and the sand, which compose the mortar, and all that pertains thereunto, together with the flagging, the timbers, the joists, the floors, and the foundations upon which they rest, that the same may be protected and preserved, that none of the elements, either through storms, fire or earthquakes, may have power to destroy, disturb or injure this thy holy House. We also dedicate and consecrate unto thee all the openings, entrances, doors and windows, and their fastenings, of the basement story. We also present to thee the Baptismal Font, in which is performed the ordinance of baptism for the living and the dead; with the steps, the railing around, and the oxen upon which it rests, the foundations, together with the connections and apparatus for furnishing, conveying, holding and heating the water, with all that pertains to it, dedicating and consecrating all unto thee, the Lord, our Father and God, that they may be holy unto thy name. We pray that thy blessing may attend those of thy servants who administer and who may officiate in the ordinances that may be performed therein, in behalf of thy people, and in behalf of those, our progenitors, our relatives and friends, who have gone before us to the spirit world, so far as we may be enabled and permitted to officiate for them.

We dedicate to thee also the rooms of this building in the first, second and third stories, with the pillars and supports thereof, including the side rooms, with the partition walls, for the purposes for which they may be used by the Priesthood, for prayer, for worship, for councils or meetings, or for administering the holy ordinances of thy House, that they may be holy unto thee, the Lord our God. We also dedicate the roof and the tower, with its dome, its covering and walls, and the walls and the battlements around and above the roof, with the timbers and frames and supports upon which the roof and tower rest, and are made permanent, and the fastenings and all that appertains thereunto, and the materials of which they are composed. We dedicate also the entrances, the steps and the circular stairs, with the railings and banisters thereunto attached. Grant, O Lord, that the roof which covers all may shield and protect this building from the storms which may come upon it. We dedicate the pipes which convey the water from the roof, with their fastenings and the materials of which they are composed. We also dedicate the chimneys, flues, conduits, and sewers, and openings for ventilation; also all the doors, windows, and glass, the hinges and nails and screws, the door locks and handles, the window weights and cords and fastenings of every kind; and all the paint, putty, plaster, whitewash and all the ornamental work within and without, everything used in the construction and completion of the entire building, from the foundation unto the top thereof, that all may be holy unto the Lord our God.

Holy Father, we dedicate unto thee the furniture and utensils used in the holy washings, anointings and ceremonies of this thy holy House; also the curtains and frames for partitions; together with the altars and their cushions, and the tables and the chairs, stools and desks, that all may be sanctified for the use and purposes intended. We dedicate also the tower on the outside, containing the fountain, also the aqueduct and pipes conveying the water thereunto. We dedicate the block of land upon which this Temple is situated, and the fence which encloses it, with its openings and gates, the hinges, hangings and fastenings, and the materials of which they are composed; also the roads and walks leading thereto and through the same.

We dedicate and consecrate the pulpits, with the cushions thereon and the ornamental fringe around, together with the steps, railing and banisters, and the seats, with the cushions on them; and the floors and the foundations upon which they stand. May nothing unholy or impure ever enter here, but may the same be holy unto the Lord our God. Especially do we pray that thy power may rest upon thy servants who may occupy these pulpits when they shall minister by virtue of their holy calling, either in preaching, in counseling, or in transacting business pertaining to the welfare of thy Church and kingdom here upon the earth.

We implore thy blessings upon the various congregations of thy people who may assemble in this House from time to time, both in their incomings and outgoings, and may thy blessing and thy spirit dwell herein and rest upon them, for their comfort and edification, and abide richly in their hearts, that they may learn further of thy ways and walk in thy paths.

We desire also to commend these thy servants and people to thy kind care and keeping, that they may be preserved unto thee from the powers of the wicked and ungodly, and from the powers of all evil and opposing influences, from whose grasp thou hast heretofore delivered us in bringing us here to these valleys and the fastnesses of these mountains. We acknowledge thee and the great deliverance thou hast wrought out for us, and we pray thee, O God, in the name of Jesus, to accept of these thy servants and people, and preserve and keep us in thy most holy keeping. Let the ministering angels from thy presence attend us, and let thy grace and power be upon us, that we may walk in the paths of purity and holiness, and be enabled to bring forth thy purposes and establish thy kingdom in all its fullness, administering in all the ordinances pertaining to thy House, and also send forth salvation to all the children of men, scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth, for their redemption from sin and bondage, even from gross darkness.

We now ask, our Father, that we thy servants and people may be acceptable unto thee, praying thee to grant that thy Holy Spirit may pervade each heart before thee, that our worship may be such as thou delightest to behold, and that the revelations of thy mind and will may continue to be made manifest through thy servant Brigham and all of thy servants upon whom thou hast conferred the authority of the holy Priesthood.

We feel not to multiply words before thee, for language is inadequate to express the fullness of the feelings and emotions of our souls in being thus privileged to meet before thee in this sacred, this holy place.

Accept, O God, of this tribute of our hearts, and let thy peace and blessing dwell and abide here in this holy Temple, which we now with uplifted hearts and hands present and consecrate and dedicate entirely as a sacred offering unto thee, for thy divine acceptance. May it stand as a monument of purity and holiness as long as the earth shall remain, commemorative of thy great goodness towards us thy people, and thy name shall have the honor, the praise and glory, for we ask all in Jesus’ name. And unto thee and our blessed Lord and Savior and to the Holy Spirit be all power, might and dominion, worlds without end. Amen.

Necessity for Effort—Regulation of Temporal Affairs—Consecration and Stewardship—Preparation for Building in Jackson County—Responsibility of Presidents—How Confidence is Created—The United Order—Desires for the Future

Discourse by Elder Lorenzo Snow, delivered at a Two Days’ Meeting Held By the St. George Stake of Zion, in the Temple, at St. George, Thursday Morning, April 5, 1877.

In occupying the time this morning, I wish in the first place to call your attention to the fact that we are Latter-day Saints, or at least ought to be, and that as such we are dependent upon the Lord for our instruction; this is in accordance with our faith that we have to look to him for assistance under all circumstances, in all places, in all our affairs of life, and in all matters pertaining to furthering us on in the principles of godliness.

Assembled together as we are this morning, it is very necessary that we ask the Lord for his spirit, the spirit of inspiration, to rest upon us as speakers and as hearers, that we may be enabled to comprehend things that may be spoken, and that they may be adapted to our individual needs.

It is impossible to advance in the principles of truth, to increase in heavenly knowledge, except we exercise our reasoning faculties and exert ourselves in a proper manner. We have an instance recorded in the Doctrine and Covenants of a misunderstanding on the part of Oliver Cowdery, touching this principle. The Lord promised him the gift to translate ancient records. Like many of us today, he had misconceptions in regard to the exercise of the gift. He thought all that was necessary for him to do, inasmuch as this gift had been pro mised him of God, was to allow his mind to wait in idleness without effort, until it should operate spontaneously. But when those records were placed before him, there was no knowledge communicated, they still remained sealed, as it were, for no power to translate came upon him.

Although the gift to translate had been conferred, he could not prosecute the work, simply because he failed to exert himself before God with the view of developing the gift within him; and he became greatly disappointed, and the Lord, in his goodness and mercy, informed him of his mistake, using the following language—

“Behold, you have not understood; you have supposed that I would give it unto you when you took no thought, save it was to ask me; but, behold, I say unto you, that you must study it out in your mind; then you must ask me if it be right, and if it is right I will cause that your bosom shall burn within you,” etc.

So in regard to us, respecting the things which we are undertaking. If we expect to improve, to advance in the work immediately before us, and finally to obtain possession of those gifts and glories, coming up to that condition of exaltation we anticipate, we must take thought and reflect, we must exert ourselves, and that too to the utmost of our ability.

The text given us by President Young yesterday, and to which we, in our prayer this morning, asked God to direct our remarks, was the work with which we are now immediately concerned, pertaining to our present wants and necessities. The question here arises, How shall we regulate our temporal affairs so as to qualify us to perform the duties and obligations devolving upon us today, and secure to ourselves the blessings of eternal life?

To this subject, so far as the Lord will give me his Holy Spirit, through the exercise of your faith, I wish to speak this morning. I desire, however, to confine myself more particularly to the subject relating to our financial union, uniting ourselves together as brethren who have entered into the everlasting covenant of the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, expecting to dwell together in the presence of God in the celestial world.

We have been told, through the revelations of God, and to which our attention has often been called, that unless we became one in temporal as well as spiritual things, it was useless anticipating the fullness of celestial glory, or a state of oneness in the spiritual things of God. But what course we are to take in order to arrive at this most desirable condition seems to remain a difficult, unsolved problem. Doubtless many have asked themselves, what can we do, and how shall we do it?

Well, let our minds revert for a few minutes to the time when we received the fullness of the everlasting Gospel, in the countries where it first reached us. As soon as we became convinced of the truth and that the Elders who preached the Gospel were the servants of God, we offered ourselves as candidates for baptism for the remission of sins, receiving the Holy Ghost through the laying on of their hands, and then felt determined to do whatever the Lord should require through his servants and continue to follow their counsels in all things, even to the sacrifice of all we possessed, if necessary, whether pertaining to the world’s wealth or that which we held in higher and dearer esteem.

We learned an important and significant fact, that we were his offspring, inheriting, though only in infantile form, the same attributes he himself possessed, and that, through probationary experience, by passing the ordeals of earth, rejecting the evil and accepting the good, these attributes could be developed until eventually we might receive a fullness of the godhead, and dwell in the presence of the Father. We became acquainted with this fact, and were convinced in our hearts that the object which now appeared before us, was well worthy of all that we could bestow upon it. Hence we resolved that we would accomplish the undertaking, though at the sacrifice of our all. We well understood that in order to attain to that position that would entitle us to this exaltation, it would be necessary to submit ourselves wholly to the mind and will of God. We felt in our hearts to consecrate our wives, our children and our property, if we had any, and our time and abilities, to the service of God. Had this law of consecration been presented at that time it no doubt would have been hailed with joy, as it was in exact accordance with the spirit of our covenants.

According to the order of the celestial world, as revealed to the Latter-day Saints, respecting the property we might possess, we were required to consecrate all to the Lord, and then to be made stewards, as pointed out by revelation in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, and were to continue to devote that which might be entrusted to us to the service of God; and so far as we increased the property of our stewardship we were to devote the same to the benefit of the king dom of God, which would be used for the building of Temples, emigrating and sustaining the poor, and for carrying on the great work of redeeming Israel. This feeling, which we entertained at the beginning, was to continue to burn in our bosoms, and we were to be faithful and honest in our professions.

I know that many of us when we came to the valleys, conformed to this law of consecration, which is now published in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants. We deeded our property, and many were willing, perhaps not all, that, if necessary, every part and portion of it should have been used as the servants of God should have directed. This was the kind of feeling that we then entertained, and just as long as we maintained this condition of mind, of willing obedience, it was all that was required. But I fear that this feeling, which gave us so much joy, which tended to increase our faith and confidence in God and in one another, has not continued to grow correspondingly with our general prosperity, experience and knowledge of the Gospel. My testimony to you is that, so far as this is the case, we stand this day not wholly approved of God, although we have the privilege of worshipping in this Temple, reared to his holy name. But just so far as this willingness exists in our hearts to appropriate our means that we have accumulated for the upbuilding of the kingdom of God on the earth, and that too without grudging, even as the former-day Saints laid down theirs at the feet of the Apostles, so far are we approved and accepted of God. Who, among the Latter-day Saints within the hearing of my voice this day, could fail to comprehend this?

In much of our business relations one with another, there does not exist that spirit of union and brotherly interest that should be maintained. We need to take such a course as will enable us to acquire it, and this spirit should prevail throughout all our settlements.

Who cannot perceive the hand of God in bringing us away from the turmoil and strife of the business world to these mountain vales, where we have the opportunity and the privilege of building up villages and cities upon the principle of unity which has been revealed to us, thus affording that necessary discipline which we could not have obtained among the cities of the Gentiles? This training cannot be acquired in one year, nor in five years, but its acquisition is enhanced in proportion to our willingness to make sacrifices in order to obtain it. By and by the Lord will have prepared the way for some to return to Jackson County, there to build up the Center Stake of Zion. How easy this work can be accomplished, after we have learned to build up cities and Temples here to his divine acceptance! Our present experience is a very needful one. Without it, we should be totally unfitted for the performance of such a work. We read that the Temple which Solomon built was erected without the sound of a hammer being heard. There had been a previous preparation and an experience gained in some distant locality, and a proper training. The materials were accurately prepared elsewhere, and when brought together were ready for setting, each piece to its proper place. As knowledge and efficiency are obtained gradually, we may expect that the experience that we are getting now in learning how to build up cities in our present condition, conforming as near as possible to the holy order of God, is, in order to prepare us by and by to return to Missouri, whence we were driven, and there build up cities and Temples to the name of the Most High, upon which his glory will descend. A condition of willingness to conform our will to the divine will is what we need. It might not be deemed policy to enter into covenants by deed, in our property matters, though it may be hereafter. But so long as the emotions of our souls prompt us to exclaim, in the language of Joshua, that “I and my household will serve the Lord,” so long as this willingness dwells in our hearts, to give ourselves up entirely to the service of God, we are then in the condition to ask the Father to hasten the day when his will shall be done on earth as in heaven; and further, when the proper time comes to require the use of our property in the interests of the great work we are engaged in, the bare mention of it will be sufficient. But, we ask, should not the Bishop who operates in our temporal matters be a very wise and good man? Certainly he should, and a man of honor and integrity, full of the Holy Ghost, loving his neighbor as himself, and loving the Lord our God with all his might, mind and strength. On this, we are told, “hang the law and the Prophets.” Blessed is he in whom these two principles are developed, for such a one is without condemnation; he stands the peer of him referred to in the Scriptures by the Savior as one “without guile.” The people will soon learn to confide in such a man, as he can establish unmistakable proof before God and before his brethren that he obeys these commandments in which are involved all that the Prophets ever lived for.

We will suppose, further, that such an individual as I have described, who really had obeyed these commandments, were placed to preside over a city of a thousand people, all of whom too were living in the advanced condition referred to. He must bear in mind his important position, high responsibilities, and who appointed him to this position, he or they in whom God had vested the authority. Why is such a man called to act as president over a people? Is it in order to acquire an influence and then to use that influence directly for his own aggrandizement? No, but on the contrary, he is called to act in such a position on the same principle as the Priesthood was given to the Son of God, that he should make sacrifice. For himself? No, but in the interests of the people over whom he presides. Would he be required to offer himself up on the cross as did the Savior? No, but to become the servant of his brethren, not their master, and to work in their interest and welfare. Not to exercise the influence thus obtained to benefit himself, his family and relatives and personal friends, but esteeming all as his brethren, having rights in common with himself and, therefore, seeking to bless and benefit all equally according to the talents and worthiness they may possess, and thus by so doing develop in himself that fatherly feeling which always exists in the bosom of the Father.

At the present time it is too often the case that the men who are called to act in such positions, instead of thus acting according to their holy calling, use their influence, their Priesthood, the sacred powers referred upon them, for their own benefit and that of their children and personal friends. This is highly improper, it is wrong and displeasing in the sight of God; and of this sin we are called upon to repent, by putting it away from us, and beginning to live the lives of Latter-day Saints, according to the sacred covenants we have entered into.

When you find a man who takes the same interest in those over whom he presides as he does in himself and family, you will naturally begin to have confidence in that individual. But as soon as you find that his feelings, by day and by night, and the course of his conduct are such as to tend directly to benefit himself and his family, you will say, “What interest has he for us. We must look out for ourselves.” But where a man works for the interest of the community, he becomes truly a father to that people, working for them with the same feeling, desire and interest as he would for himself. It might be said of him, as it should be said of all men, that he loves his brethren, or in other words, “his neighbor,” as himself. Now let the man who acts as the presiding Elder of his ward, manifest by word and action these fatherly feelings towards those he presides over, and how soon we would begin to perceive perfect confidence restored!

Possibly such a man might not always possess financiering abilities, and possibly the people themselves might not have confidence in his abilities to manage or direct temporal affairs. This is quite supposable, for good sound principled men are not always endowed with great financiering abilities. Yet from the fact of his having established himself in the hearts of the people, and his being known by them for his integrity and honesty, and his disposition to work for the interests of God and the people, willing to make any sacrifice that might be required of him, he possesses their confidence, and when once in possession of so sacred a trust, what then might he do in order to satisfy the minds of the people, which are, more or less, inclined to be progressive? Let such a man call to his aid those of his brethren who are the most capable, letting them share his responsibilities. Because you will find, as a general thing, that talent is diffused through the many and rarely combined in single individuals; and it only needs opportunity in order to be developed. He might say to one, “Here Brother So and so, you are better adapted to fill this or that position than I am;” or, to another, “You are the man best fitted for this department;” and so on until he gets the talents of all brought out, and instead of diminishing the public confidence in himself, such a course would add to it. Further, he would be doing for his brethren that which the United Order designs to do for all, namely to afford opportunity to develop the gift that Nature has endowed us with. Therefore, I say that all these matters can be got along with, provided we have the sure and safe foundation, which should be based on honesty and integrity to God and the true interests of his kingdom and people. With a people of one heart and mind, possessed of the same feelings and aspirations as we were when we first embraced the Gospel, in connection with our present know ledge and experience in the practical workings of building up the kingdom, how easy it would be to establish our home industries or mercantile institutions and carry them on successfully! Everyone would be on hand, like Israel when, in the desert, and journeying to the land of Canaan, they were required to build a movable tabernacle for certain sacred purposes, and the people brought their offerings etc., even more than were sufficient, and Moses had to cry out to the people to stop. So it would be with us, as far as willingness on the part of the people was concerned to take an active part in any general movement that might be projected. Whatever means or property or time might be devoted by the community for the establishing of any certain enterprise, would be done in good faith, for every heart would be inspired with confidence, everyone considering his interest identified with that of the whole.

But it takes time to get the people into this condition. Here, in this southern country, we understand that the people have been endeavoring to work together in the United Order, meeting with more or less disappointment. Because of reverses or failures in our attempts to successfully operate our temporal affairs, we should not allow such disappointment to detract from the principle itself; but rather let us attribute our misfortunes to human weaknesses, regarding the principle as divine, revealed for our special benefit and blessing, and in every instance of apparent failure let us ever be resolved to “try again.” The principles of Plural Marriage were revealed for the benefit and exaltation of the children of men, but how much unhappiness has arisen through failure, on the part of some who have contracted this order of marriage, to conform to the laws that govern it! But does it arise through any defect in the order of the marriage system? O no; but from ignorance and the folly and wickedness of those individuals who enter into it, who abuse, rather than righteously obey, it. So in regard to the principles of the United Order. Its principles too are sacred, and I assure you we will never go back to Jackson County, Missouri, there to build up the new Jerusalem of the latter days, until there is a perfect willingness on our part to conform to its rules and principles. Many years have transpired since we received the revelation of the United Order, and in one sense that long period of time bespeaks negligence on our part in not more fully obeying it. The very principles of that order, in my estimation, were given for our temporal and spiritual salvation. In order to derive the benefit that God designed should flow from them, they must be established and systematized on the principle of righteousness, each per son learning to love his neighbor as himself. For us to undertake to deal with them on any other principle would virtually open the way to bitter disappointment.

Then allow me to repeat, let me find a community that is willing to conform to this, bringing to mind the covenants made in the beginning when we received the fullness of the Gospel, willing to bring to mind when they dedicated all they possessed—their property, their talents, their mental and physical powers, to the building up of his kingdom; remembering the time when we did this, the blessings of God were upon us, and his Spirit burned within us. Then let those who preach in the midst of that community of Saints, realize what the Priesthood was placed upon them for; let them know and fully sense why they were appointed to fill such and such an office, viz., that they should act in the spirit of our Master, a servant of all, that they learn to consider and esteem in the same affectionate interest, the welfare of all, as they do that of themselves, and be in very deed fathers to the people. Then will they enter into the spirit of the two great commands upon which, said the Savior, “hang the law and the Prophets,” namely, loving the Lord with all our might, mind and strength, and our neighbor as ourselves. This, in my opinion, is the foundation of our future success, temporally and spiritually, in this United Order. Until we come down to the bedrock of honesty and sincerity in this matter, dealing with temporal as with spiritual things, wholeheartedly, holding all and ourselves sacred to the service of God, we may expect more or less failure.

Let me say to the brethren who are and who contemplate connecting themselves actively and entirely with this holy Order, that the Priesthood was bestowed upon you, as upon the Son of God himself, for no other purpose than that, through sacrifice, you might be proven, that, peradventure, at the last day, you might stand approved before God, and before perfect and holy beings and that, in order to merit this divine approval, it may be necessary to forget self and individual aggrandizement and seek the interest of your brethren. If you are ready and willing to do this, and if your everyday life and conduct, and the spirit within you testify the fact, you will establish confidence in the hearts of those who know you and with whom you are more immediately associated in temporal matters.

Confidence is ofttimes referred to by our brethren, especially when speaking on the subject of the United Order. It is spoken of and written on by the religious, the political, and the financial world; and the present condition of the whole is such as to force itself upon our serious attention. We may confidently apprehend that, as history shall chronicle the developments of this our progressive world, we shall witness more and more the necessity of it. For as palpable and, what may be termed, legitimate fraud increases, and the whole world ripens in iniquity generally, confidence will lessen and become more priceless and precious. This is quite obvious to all men in whose hearts dwell a spark of that Spirit by which the Prophets foretold the destiny of the nations. Confidence can be acquired only on the principle of righteousness, whether it be applied to the monarch or the peasant, the religionist or the non-religionist; merit alone commands it.

Then let us live the lives of Latter-day Saints, that we may first beget confidence in ourselves; then we shall begin to have confidence in each other, in God, and in his promises. A people in this condition of progress would know no failures, everything would prosper that they put their hands to, they would grow in faith and in good works. I tell you, in the name of the Lord God, that the time is coming when there will be no safety only in the principles of union, for therein lies the secret of our temporal and spiritual salvation. We have been enabled to establish settlements, towns, and villages, and we have been abundantly blessed with the necessaries and conveniences of life, notwithstanding we have been slow to hearken to and obey the commands of Jehovah. I would to God that every Bishop and presiding officer would this day, in this holy Temple, covenant and swear before him, the Lord our God, that they would turn and serve him with all their might, mind and strength, and work in the interest of the people as they would for themselves. For my greatest desire is to see Zion established according to the revelations of God, to see her inhabitants industrious and self-sustaining, filled with wisdom and the power of God, that around us may be built a wall of defense, a protection against the mighty powers of Babylon; and while the disobedient of our Father’s family are contending, and filling up their cup of iniquity, even to the brim, and thus preparing themselves for the burning, we, who are the acknowledged children of the kingdom, being filled with the righteousness and knowledge of God, may be like the wise virgins, clothed in our wedding garments, and properly prepared for the coming of our Lord and Savior.

Feelings in the Temple—Value of the Sacred Records—The Gospel Finds Testimony in Opposition—The Gospel Always the Same—Martyrs Versus Heroes—Ordinances for the Dead

Discourse by Elder George Q. Cannon, delivered in the Temple, at St. George, on Wednesday Morning, April 4, 1877, at the First of the Two Days’ Meetings held by the St. George Stake of Zion.

It is with peculiar feelings I arise to speak to you, my brethren and sisters, for the short time remaining, in this holy Temple. If I were to describe my feelings on entering and worshiping in this house, I would occupy more time than remains to be used, and I do not know if I were to attempt to do so I could succeed. Each one present can the better estimate the feelings of his brother from those entertained by himself.

I was here last fall, and then my emotions upon entering this room were of the most peculiar character. I felt overpowered, and I have felt so each time I have entered the building. It is a holy place, and all those who come here should be holy; they should examine themselves, and finding themselves guilty of wrong, they should make up their minds in the strength and power of God to put it away. I do not think that any person who has any of the love of the truth, the love of righteousness, or the fear of God abiding in his heart, can enter this building without being impressed with the sacredness of the spirit which reigns here, and that seems to pervade even the atmosphere we breathe. My fervent prayer to God is that this building will be kept clean and pure, free from every act and spirit antagonistic to the holy influences that God has promised to bestow upon the pure in heart who enter herein; and that this building will stand as long as it shall be necessary to fulfil the purposes of God.

The remarks we have heard from President Wells are very true, and are so in keeping with the Scriptures, that every Latter-day Saint who has heard them, must be satisfied of their truth. It is always a cause of joy to me that, in the providences of God our heavenly Father, the sacred records we have, which have come down through so many ages, and which are recognized by Christendom to be the words of God (at least acknowledged by all Christians to be so, whether they believe it or not); I say that in the providence of God these records have come down to us in as pure condition as we find them. Because it is a comfort to a people like we are, whose names are cast out as evil, and who are derided and visited with every kind of contumely, accused of every conceivable crime, to know that the doctrine and ordinances that we believe in have a similarity to, and are in strict accordance with, those of the recognized word of God. We need not go to the Book of Mormon and the Book of Doctrine and Covenants alone, for the proofs of the truth of the work we are engaged in; for in appealing to those books we only appeal to a corroborative testimony showing that God’s words and dealings with the children of men are the same in all ages of the world. While he gave his revealed word to the ancients on the Eastern Continent, he also gave to the inhabitants of the Western Continent his word, and they both agree. He has also given to us, his people in the last days, his word. By these three witnesses, or these three divine records, his word is corroborated and maintained. Having received the word of God from these various sources, we can rejoice this day in the great truth that the doctrines we teach, the ordinances we have submitted to, and that have been and are being administered to us, and that our lives when we live as we should, are in strict accordance with these three records, which we know to be the word of God, but particularly in accordance with the Bible, which the Christian world acknowledge to be true. This has always been a great cause of joy to me, and I have been greatly strengthened in knowing that no reference could be made to any part, or to any doctrine or principle of the Bible, which was not believed in and practiced by the Latter-day Saints to the extent of their ability, that is, so far as the doctrine or requirement was applicable to them. Of course, where distinct revelations were given to people under peculiar conditions and of a peculiar character, as for in stance, Noah or Abraham, or the disciples when they were commanded to flee from Jerusalem, the common sense of all men would suggest that such requirements were not applicable to us. It is not necessary for us to build an ark, or to do any of these things, especially commanded to others; but where general revelations, doctrines, ordinances, or commandments are revealed or communicated to the people of God, we as a people have received all such, and they form part of our faith and belief, and we, to some extent at least, are engaged in carrying them out. In conjunction with these glorious facts, precisely the same consequences or results flow from the teachings of the servants of God in these days as in the days of old. God confirmed the word by signs following. The adversary in the same spirit of hatred that characterized his attacks upon the work of God in all ages, is in these last days as bitter and as determined to cause the same results to follow the preaching of the servants of God, and the administration of the ordinances of life and salvation, as at any previous time in the world’s history, thus showing that the old antagonism that existed between God and Belial, the old animosity that actuated the mind of those whom he inflamed to crucify the Son of Man, and to destroy his Apostles, had not died out, but was as determined in this our day to effect the ruin of those who believe in the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, who have submitted to its ordinances, as at any previous time in the history of the world.

If we had believed all that is taught in the Scriptures, and had not received the promised blessings; or if we had believed in all that is written in the Scriptures, and had received the promised blessings, and had not received the hatred and animosity of the wicked, there might have been cause for doubt as to our having obeyed the Gospel. We might have been assailed with a fear that something was lacking in the system, and that, therefore, we could not be the people of God after all. But when, in addition to the doctrine that God has revealed, and the ordinances of life and salvation that he has restored and commanded us to obey, that is, to believe in Jesus Christ, to repent truly and sincerely of all our sins, to be baptized for remission of them, by one holding the authority, and then receive the Holy Ghost through the laying on of hands, and its gifts and blessings and its powers, for our names to be cast out as evil, to have our names heralded through the earth as the most ungodly and wicked and abominable people that live upon the earth, to have men think that in destroying us they would be doing God’s service; I say that when these characteristics attend the administration and ordinances of the House of God, we can rejoice even as the ancients did in the knowledge that there is no peculiarity of feature pertaining to the ancient Gospel from the days of Adam to John the Revelator, or from the days of Jared and his brother to Moroni, or from the days of Joseph and Hyrum to this our day, that does not attend the Gospel now. Not only is there no feature, characteristic or peculiarity absent, but there is no sign or evidence lacking of its being the same work of God. Precisely the same signs follow now, and precisely the same external evidences follow the preaching of the Gospel now, as anciently. Having these signs and evidences and blessings, should we not, as a people, rejoice exceedingly? Should not our hearts be full of thanksgiving to Almighty God, that, however humble and obscure and illiterate, however contemptible in the minds of the children of men, our doctrines, lives and characters may be, our names are numbered with the holiest, the best and the greatest that have ever trod the footstool of God, that our names are numbered with Jesus the firstborn, the Son of God, and with Enoch, Abraham, the friend of God (distinguished above all the sons of men by that glorious evidence of God’s nearness to him, being called his friend), and with all the holy Prophets whose lives are living testimonies to the divinity of their calling? If we would enjoy the society and glory of such personages we must be willing to suffer as they did; and if not so, we cannot reasonably expect to be numbered among the happy throng who are to live and reign with Jesus. When we shall have done all they have done, passed through and experienced the same blessings that they have, drunk the same cup, and been baptized with the same baptism, and, when necessary, laid down our lives as they have in testimony of the truth, then we can reign with them.

It is easy to die in the heat of battle, or when men are selected for some heroic duty, and the eyes of the world are upon them; but this is not the manner in which the servants and people of God have lost their lives. Jesus was crucified between two thieves, the most ignominious death to which anyone could be subjected, and those who crucified him believed him to be worthy of such a fate. They disseminated among the people such slanders and misrepresentations of his works and actions that many felt justified in taking the responsibility of shedding his blood upon themselves and their posterity.

Thus it always has been with the servants and Saints of God. They do not die when their lives are taken by violence in a manner which the world calls heroic or glorious; but as malefactors, the ignominious death administered to those who are slain for the testimony of Jesus, and thus it always has been with God’s children, the brightest, the best and noblest, that ever lived. They have had to lay down their lives as Joseph did, slain in the prison where he was confined. The same self-sacrifice, the same godlike self-sacrifice is required at the hands of the servants and Saints of God in this our day, as was required of those in ancient days, when they were cast into dens of wild beasts, into the fiery furnace, or when sawn asunder and subjected to every kind of violent death because of their supposed wickedness.

I thank God this day for the restoration of this truth. I thank God that I was ever counted worthy to live in the day when the revelations of Jesus are restored. I thank God, with all my heart, that I am a member of this Church; I think it the most glorious honor and dignity that could be conferred upon me, and more so in the goodness of God in permitting me to officiate in the holy Priesthood. I thank him too that he has inspired his servants to lead forth his people and bring us here, and that through the kind providences of God and the wise counsels and administrations of his servants, we are blessed with those glorious privileges in being permitted to rear a habitation to the name of the Most High in which we worship this day; this chaste, this grand, this magnificent house of God.

When I reflect upon what God has done for us, in addition to that which I have alluded to, it gives me deeper gratitude still in knowing that in all the revelations given us concerning ourselves and our future glory, there has been no concealment concerning the destiny of our dead who have passed away without a knowledge of the Gospel. There would have been something lacking in our joy had this revelation not been made, for we could not have contemplated our own happiness in the eternal worlds with any degree of satisfaction, if we had been disturbed by the thought that our ancestors could not partake of the same blessings we had received. But God in his mercy has revealed his purposes to us, so that there are none that understand the Gospel who cannot enter into this house and glorify God in his heart because of the fullness of these blessings; and because we know the Lord possesses all the glorious attributes we have ascribed to him.

You enquire of the enlightened men of Christendom respecting their dead, and they readily acknowledge it to be a subject they know nothing about. A great many think that the heathen nations who have died in ignorance are consigned to the miseries of a never-ending hell. Who with such feelings and belief can glorify God in their hearts and ascribe to him the glorious attributes of mercy and justice, and recognize him as a just and merciful being?

But when we received the Gospel, there came with it a distinct message of mercy, a message of glad tidings of great joy, that not only the living should receive the testimony of Jesus, not only should the living rejoice in the glorious principles of life and salvation, but the dead themselves should hear the voice of the servants of God, and the glad tidings of salvation should be proclaimed in their hearing, and through the exercising of their agency in receiving these truths, their prison doors could be unlocked and they come forth and receive, as though in the flesh, the same blessings, exaltation and glory, according to their good wishes and good deeds. Thus has been swept from our minds every cause of doubt respecting our dead, and our hearts warmed towards them with joy unspeakable, and consequently we combine our efforts to erect such a building, such a holy house as this is. Thus we, in our hearts, witness to God the Eternal Father, that we have received indeed of a truth the testimony that he has given to us, that we believe the same to be true, and that we will, with the aid and power which he bestows upon us, devote our entire lives to the interests of his kingdom, bequeathing the same spirit and energy to our children after us, that they too may labor, with all their might, mind and strength and the ability with which God shall endow them, to carry on and extend the great work of redemption and salvation until every son and daughter of Adam shall receive the glad tidings of salvation, and shall be administered for in the holy temples which shall be prepared for that express purpose.

That God may help us to do this with all our might and strength is my prayer in the name of Jesus. Amen.

Daniel’s Vision—Nebuchadnezzar’s Dream—Its Interpretation—The Coming of the Ancient of Days—Joseph Smith’s Prophecy—Things Yet to Be Fulfilled—The Valley of God Where Adam Dwelt—The Establishment of the Kingdom of God—The Coming Millennium and Triumph of the Saints

Discourse by Elder Orson Pratt, delivered in the Eighteenth Ward Meetinghouse, Salt Lake City, Sunday Afternoon, Feb. 25, 1877.

I will read a few passages from the book of the Prophet Daniel, which he received from the Lord through vision, and which relate to the latter days—a prophecy which has not yet been fulfilled. It will be found in the 7th chapter commencing with the 9th verse—

“I beheld till the thrones were cast down, and the Ancient of days did sit, whose garment was white as snow, and the hair of his head like the pure wool: his throne was like the fiery flame, and his wheels as burning fire.

“A fiery stream issued and came forth from before him: thousand thousands ministered unto him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him: the judgment was set, and the books were opened.

“I beheld then because of the voice of the great words which the horn spake: I beheld even till the beast was slain, and his body destroyed, and given to the burning flame.

“As concerning the rest of the beasts, they had their dominion taken away: yet their lives were prolonged for a season and time.

“I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him.

“And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.”

This prophecy relates to a period of time in the history of our race, when thrones are to be cast down, when kingdoms and the various governments which exist upon the face of the earth are to be overthrown; to a period when only one kingdom or one government shall have dominion, and its dominion will extend to the ends of the earth; a kingdom too which we are told, in the second chapter of Daniel’s prophecy, is to be everlasting in its nature, and not like those other kingdoms which Daniel says are to be overthrown. This divine kingdom is to have a universal dominion, so far as this world is concerned. It is represented, in its beginning, as being very small, compared to a stone cut out of the mountain without hands, but which rolls forth gathering strength as it rolled, until all other kingdoms, of human invention and human authority, should cease to exist, should be broken to pieces and become, as is plainly declared, like the chaff of a summer’s threshingfloor, which the wind carried away and no place was found for it.

I presume there is no person in this congregation, but what will, with me, admit, that no such period has ever arrived, since that prophecy was uttered. But such a period will arrive in the history of our earth. The Prophet Daniel clearly saw that the stone, which was to be cut out of the mountain without hands, which should smite upon the toes of the image—the great image which represented the kingdoms of this world—should be a divine work, a work that the Lord himself would accomplish among men. In other words, the Lord condescended to give to one of the most powerful kings who has ever dwelt upon the earth, so far as human power is concerned, a dream which represented to him all the kingdoms of this world; but when he awoke he could not even remember the dream. It however made a deep impression on his mind, and he knew there was something very important attached to the dream. So exercised was he, that he issued a proclamation to the inhabitants of the city of great Babylon, requesting all the wise men to tell him the dream, and then to give him the interpretation thereof. If they could tell him the dream, he, of course, would have confidence in the truth of the interpretation; but if he himself were to tell the dream, if it were possible to remember it, he would not know whether the interpretation would be correct or not. Being a monarch of absolute power, he threatened death to the wise men, if they failed to tell him the dream, and also to give him the interpretation. Daniel, with his three friends who were Jews, besought the Lord in the matter, and the Lord revealed to Daniel the dream and the interpretation thereof. The dream as Daniel related it to king Nebuchadnezzar was as follows—

“Thou, O King, sawest, and beheld a great image. This great image, whose brightness was excellent, stood before thee; and the form thereof was terrible. This image’s head was of fine gold, his breast and his arms of silver, his belly and his thighs of brass, His legs of iron, his feet part of iron and part of clay. Thou sawest till that a stone was cut without hands, which smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay, and brake them to pieces. Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken to pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshingfloors; and the wind carried them away, that no place was found for them: and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth.”

The Prophet then interprets the dream, naming every particular of its meaning. “Thou art this head of gold.” That is, his dominion, the Babylonish empire, and the kingdoms and nations round about, over which the Lord had made him ruler, represented this head of gold. “And after thee,” continued the Prophet, “shall arise another kingdom inferior to thee,” represented by the breast and the arms of silver. A third kingdom was to arise after that, represented by the brass. Then a fourth kingdom was to follow, representing the iron kingdom, or a kingdom of great strength. But it divided, represented by the two legs of iron. This iron kingdom represents very closely the Roman empire, in all its strength and greatness. That empire was divided and it was known as the eastern and western empire, represented by the two legs of iron, one having its seat at Rome, the other at Constantinople. But the feet and toes were governments more modern to grow out of the iron kingdom, after it should lose its strength. These are represented by the ten toes or ten kingdoms which should be partly strong and partly broken. They should not have the strength of the legs of iron, but they should be mixed with miry clay, indicating both strength and weakness. These last kingdoms and governments (such as have existed during the last few centuries, on the eastern and western hemispheres) complete the great image.

The head or gold kingdom, having lost its universal dominion, is still represented by its descendants, under various forms of governments in Asia.

The descendants of the silver kingdom are still existing in Persia, and in the western parts of Asia.

The brass kingdom has its present representatives in the east of Europe, extending into Asia.

The descendants of the once great iron kingdom are found mostly in Europe, extending in some measure into Asia, and in still greater measure into America.

The present existing nations represent two things—first, in a governmental capacity, they represent the feet and toes of the great image; second, in the capacity of lineal descent, they represent all the former kingdoms of this terrible image.

The image being now completed, another government of divine origin is to be set up, forming no part of this great image. Being entirely separate from and unconnected with this great image, it should not even represent a toe or finger of the image, nor any other part or portion thereof.

“Thou sawest till a stone was cut out without hands,” etc. In other words, all these other governments have been formed by human wisdom and ingenuity; but, by and by, a separate and distinct government, represented by a little stone, should be cut out without hands. What I understand by this is something that man should have nothing to do with, so far as the divinity of its formation was concerned. For it is interpreted thus—“And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom.” It is God, then, who organizes it; he confers the power and authority upon those who shall minister in its government; human wisdom does not enter as a constituent, either in the founding or government of the same.

The fifth kingdom is, therefore, to be peculiar from all the others in its organization. It is further said, that “it shall never be destroyed, and the kingdom shall not be left to other people.” The four kingdoms which preceded it were transferred, first to one nation, and then to another, until the image was complete, until human governments had nearly fulfilled their destiny; then a kingdom or government should be set up on the earth that should never be destroyed. It should not be taken from one people and given to another, as Babylon was taken from the Babylonians and given to the Medes and Persians; and as the Medes and Persians had their kingdom transferred and given to the Greeks and Macedonians; and as the latter had their kingdom transferred from them and given to the Romans; and as the Romans, in turn, lost their universal dominion and great power, and were broken up into little petty kingdoms, such as now exist. But this latter kingdom was not to be thus transferred; it was to be permanent, it was to increase in greatness and strength, until it, or the little stone which represented it, became as a great mountain, filling the whole earth. Or, as the Prophet Daniel says, that “the Saints of the Most High shall take the kingdom and shall possess the kingdom forever, even forever and ever.” “And the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven shall be given to the people of the Saints of the Most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey him.” This portion of the prophecy has not yet been fulfilled, only so far as the setting up of God’s kingdom is concerned.

The four beasts, described in the first part of the 7th chapter, are those four kingdoms represented by the great metallic image of gold, silver, brass, etc. In this 7th chapter, the Lord does not say anything about the stone to be cut out of the mountain without hands, and the rolling of that stone, and the breaking in pieces of the various kingdoms and governments; but he does represent in this chapter one great and important event that will transpire at a certain time in the history of our race, namely—“I beheld till the thrones were cast down,” etc. He beheld, too, how this work of destruction should be done, for that is described in the 2nd chapter.

After the earthly thrones were cast down, Daniel says, “And the Ancient of Days did sit, whose garment was white as snow, and the hair of his head like the pure wool: his throne was like the fiery flame, and his wheels as burning fire. A fiery stream issued and came forth from before him: thousand thousands ministered unto him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before unto him.”

How much is ten thousand times ten thousand? Only a hundred millions, but that would make quite a large congregation. All the inhabitants of the United States only number about forty millions, counting men, women and children. If they were assembled in one place, it would present a grand spectacle; but suppose we double that number, making it eighty millions, what a vast congregation that number of people would make, we can hardly grasp in our comprehension its extent; and still we will add to it another twenty millions so as to equal the size of the congregation which the Prophet Daniel saw standing before the Ancient of Days. Such a body of people must extend over a great many miles of country, however closely they may be collected together. I doubt whether the extremes of such a congregation could be seen by the natural eyes of mortals; they would be lost in the distance.

Why will this vast assemblage of people stand there? What will be the object of the Ancient of Days, in coming with this vast multitude, and what is to be accomplished? We read that the four beasts, representing the powers of the earth, will exist at the time of the coming of the Ancient of Days. And that the fourth beast, represented by the Roman Empire and the kingdoms that have grown out of it, will be “slain and his body destroyed and given to the burning flame.” Here then we can read the destiny of that portion of the inhabitants of the earth constituting the fourth beast; or, in other words, the destiny of the kingdoms of Europe, who were to arise and grow out of that fourth power. We can read the final destiny of the kingdoms of Europe, namely, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Scandinavia, and the great northern power, Russia, Austria and Prussia, and all those various nations, that more particularly pertain to this great iron power that once so cruelly oppressed the people; its “body shall be destroyed and given to the burning flame,” which signifies the nature of the judgment that will befall them. According to other prophecies, contained in Daniel, a succession of judgments, great and terrible in their nature, will overtake them, before the fire spoken of comes. Nation will rise against nation in war, kingdom against kingdom: or in the language of Isaiah, “Behold, the Lord will come with fire, and with his chariots like a whirlwind, to render his anger with fury, and his rebuke with flames of fire. For by fire and by his sword will the Lord plead with all flesh: and the slain of the Lord shall be many.”

It seems then that the body of the fourth power is to be given to the burning flame, that signifies the utter extinction of that power from the face of the earth. The heathen nations representing the other three beasts, will not then be destroyed: but their lives are to be prolonged, and their dominion is to be taken away. Though their lives will be prolonged, yet they will not have power to rule and govern, only as they are permitted. If you will read from the beginning of the 36th to the end of the 39th chapters of Ezekiel, you find much said, in regard to the heathen nations. “And the heathen shall know that I am the Lord,” etc. But the fourth power represents the nations of modern Christendom. They have not the privilege of the heathen, in having their lives prolonged. Why? Does the speaker mean to say that modern Christendom is more wicked than the heathen? Yes; the people of Christendom possess more light and knowledge than the heathen, and therefore, they are under the greater condemnation; for according to the light and knowledge they severally have, will they be judged. The more enlightened nations, so called, are rejecting the Gospel message which is being sent to them by divine authority; and for that reason their utter destruction is inevitable, and, as had been decreed, they must pass away. Their lives will not be prolonged. Not only the kingdoms and governments of Europe, and the western portion of Asia are to be thus visited, but also those who have grown out of these kingdoms, that have emigrated to this western hemisphere, and elsewhere. For instance, this great republic must pass away in the manner indicated unless the people repent. There is only one condition by which they can be preserved as a nation, and the Lord himself has decreed it. We can read it in the various revelations which God has given, respecting this land. The Book of Mormon, for instance, speaks in many places, of the overthrow of the government that should exist on this land if they should reject the divine message contained therein. Inasmuch as they repent not, the Lord has said that he would visit them in his anger, and that he would throw down all their strongholds. And he further says, that he will cut off their horses out of their midst. This will doubtless be done through some great calamity or disease. He also says that he will cut off the cities of our land, that all manner of lying, deceits, hypocrisy, murders, priestcrafts, whoredoms and secret abominations shall be done away, having reference particularly to this nation. He says, too, “I will execute vengeance and fury upon them, even as upon the heathen, such as they have not heard.” We are told, too, that the nature of these judgments is to be swift and terrible, coming upon them like a fierce wind, when they expect it not; when they are crying peace and safety, behold sudden destruction is at their doors.

I might dwell still longer on the judgments to come upon this American nation, according to modern revelation. In 1832, the Lord foretold to the Prophet Joseph Smith that there should be a great war between the Northern and Southern States. This revelation is published in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, a standard work of the Church, and also in many languages, many years before the war commenced. At that early period we were told that the Southern States would rise against the Northern States, and the Northern against the Southern States in war, terminating in the deaths and misery of many souls. We were told also that this war would begin with the rebellion of South Carolina.

When I was a boy, a little over 20 years of age, I had the privilege of taking a copy of that revelation, and I carried it around with me, oftentimes reading it to the congregations that I preached to. Its subject matter formed a text from which I many times preached, as well as a topic of conversation with strangers, whose acquaintance I would happen to make in traveling from place to place.

How do you think such information was received by the people to whom it was imparted? They would not believe it; they had no idea of its being a revelation from God to them; they considered it one of the impositions that the “Mormons” had gotten up to delude the people. To tell them that this great government would be divided and go to war with each other, was something entirely foreign to their minds; it was something to which they paid heedless regard, ofttimes treating it with ridicule and laughter. I preached in the New England States, and in various portions of the Union, and such was the way these things were received. The shedding of blood was then one of the remotest feelings of the American people; yet it came to pass precisely as predicted, and we all know the results of that dreadful war. That war, we must remember, was only one solitary judgment, compared with what will come, and that, too, in the near future. It has been revealed that the time will come in the history of our nation, that one State will rise against another, one city against another, even every man’s hand shall be against his neighbor, until the whole Republic will be in general commotion and warfare. How and when this will take place, the Lord, in his wisdom, has not told us; but it is sufficient for us to say, that he has told us of the facts that such and such will be the case.

For aught we know, the fulfillment of this prophecy may grow out of politics. If the people are very nearly equally divided in politics, this feeling may run so high, in years to come, as to be the direct cause of war. And if this should be the case, it would very naturally spread to every neighborhood in the Union. One class of political opponents would rise up against the other class in the same city and country, and thus would arise a war of mobocracy.

If a war of this description should take place, who could carry on his business in safety? Who would feel safe to put his crops in the ground, or to carry on any enterprise? There would be fleeing from one State to another, and general confusion would exist throughout the whole Republic. Such eventually is to be the condition of this whole nation, if the people do not repent of their wicked ness; and such a state of affairs means no more or less than the complete overthrow of the nation, and not only of this nation, but the nations of Europe, which form the feet and toes of that great image. They are the powers to be first broken; it is not the nation representing the head of gold, the remnant of the Babylonish Empire that still exists in Asia, that will be attacked first, neither is it the Persians and Medes, whose descendants still live; but the Lord will first break up those kingdoms which represent the feet and toes of the image, of which I have been speaking. After that, he will proceed to break in pieces the kingdoms that represent the brass, the silver, and the gold. Some are to be spared for a little season. The kingdom of God is to roll forth, and a certain person is to come, accompanied by a great host; the name of this person is the Ancient of Days. And who are they that compose the mighty host? Are they immortal beings? Doubtless most of them will be immortal Saints, but there may be some mortals among them. The being called the Ancient of Days will not be a mortal person, his glory is too great, he has passed through his mortality, and he will have the oversight of this numerous host, at least a hundred million of people.

Who would be the most likely person to fill this important position? He is called the Ancient of Days. Can you tell me, who the most ancient person is that lived on the earth, during the most ancient days? All, all will acknowledge that it is Adam. Inasmuch as he has proven himself a righteous man, it is right and proper that he should by divine appointment, have dominion over the righteous of his posterity, who should exist from his day, down to that period, when he comes in his glory; and this ten thousand times ten thousand spoken of will be the faithful of his own posterity. They shall stand before him, and certain books are then to be opened. If we understand the nature of those records, we should doubtless find much written concerning kingdoms, nations and individuals. They are the records which are kept in heaven, in which all things pertaining to the peoples of the earth are recorded. Or, as the Book of Mormon expresses it, giving the language of the Savior when on this American continent, that “all things are written by the Father;” that is, by his authority, by his direction are all things written. The records of the nations—their rise and decadence, with everything pertaining to them, in a national capacity, will be written. Then there will be the records of families and of individuals, even of all people and tongues of the earth. The books will be opened, and the judgment will sit. What judgment? Not the final judgment, because that is to take place more than a thousand years after this. This judgment refers to the nations that will then exist, and it is out of these records and by this judgment will they be judged. The calamities spoken of will take place in fulfillment of the Scriptures, and of the great purposes of Jehovah.

It may be asked, Do you think this vast congregation will actually come, and, if so, to what place will they come? I will read a new revelation upon the subject given May 18, 1838, almost thirty-nine years ago. It was given when the Prophet Joseph Smith, and the Latter-day Saints, had gathered themselves together in Missouri, about forty or fifty miles north of Jackson County. They had assembled at a place that they called Spring Hill, and the Lord revealed to Joseph, on that occasion, things concerning this great event. This place, Spring Hill, is alluded to by the Lord, in this revelation, as being anciently called Adam-ondi-Ahman, because it is the place where Adam shall come to visit his children, or the place where the Ancient of Days shall sit, as spoken of by Daniel the Prophet. Here, then, we have a key to the important personage, called the Ancient of Days, that he is our father Adam, and that he is to sit in judgment, among certain numbers of his children, in that certain region of country.

You may inquire why he should come to that particular place, on this western continent? The reason is, because he once dwelt there. You may say, I really thought that Adam lived in Asia, and if he did, we have no account of his leaving there. I will read another revelation, contained in this Book of Doctrine and Covenants, given on the 8th day of July, 1838, wherein it is represented that Adam occupied that region of country. The revelation was given in Far West, Missouri. I will only read a few verses—

“For have I not the fowls of heaven, and also the fish of the sea, and the beasts of the mountains? Have I not made the earth? Do I not hold the destinies of all the armies of the nations of the earth? Therefore, will I not make solitary places to bud and to blossom, and to bring forth in abundance? saith the Lord. Is there not room enough upon the mountains of Adam-ondi-Ahman, and upon the plains of Olaha Shinehah, or the land where Adam dwelt, that you should covet that which is but the drop, and neglect the more weighty matters? Therefore come up hither unto the land of my people, even Zion.”

We have then an understanding that it was the place where Adam dwelt. Perhaps you may be anxious to know what “Ondi-Ahman” means. It means the place where Adam dwelt. “Ahman” signifies God. The whole term means Valley of God, where Adam dwelt. It is in the original language spoken by Adam, as revealed to the Prophet Joseph.

Next, let us turn to another passage, referring to the same subject, contained in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, on page 355, verse 53, being part of a revelation given on the 28th of March, 1835—

“Three years previous to the death of Adam, he called Seth, Enos, Cainan, Mahalaleel, Jared, Enoch and Methuselah, who were all high priests, with the residue of his posterity who were righteous, into the valley of Adam-ondi-Ahman, and there bestowed upon them his last blessing. And the Lord appeared unto them, and they rose up and blessed Adam, and called him Michael, the prince, the archangel. And the Lord administered comfort to Adam, and said unto him: I have set thee to be at the head; a multitude of nations shall come of thee, and thou art a prince over them forever. And Adam stood up in the midst of the congregation; and, notwithstanding he was bowed down with age, being full of the Holy Ghost, predicted whatsoever should befall his posterity unto the latest generation. These things were all written in the book of Enoch, and are to be testified of in due time.”

Here then we perceive that the way Adam obtained these promises was in this Conference held by the great Patriarch, wherein he called his children and his children’s children together for eight generations, all of whom were righteous men hence their names are particularly mentioned, while millions of his children, descendants that were wicked, have not their names mentioned. The righteous of all his posterity were assembled with him, in that place, in the valley called Adam-ondi-Ahman. What a glorious Conference that would be, a Conference wherein the Lord himself appeared? I think if the Latter-day Saints thought they could behold the face of the Lord, they would gather together at our Conferences, and let nothing hinder; there would not many righteous stop back, but they would generally come together from all parts of the Territory. I do not know that those holy men who assembled in Conference with Adam had any promise beforehand that they should behold the face of the Lord; but they went in faith, in obedience to the call of their aged father; they no doubt exercised much earnestness of spirit, in order to obtain a blessing from the hands of the Lord. The Lord answered their prayers, and he appeared to them, and gave them much consolation, and he set Adam to be at their head, to be a prince over them and over all his posterity forever. And I have no doubt, if we had the Book of Enoch referred to in the revelation, in which book all the prophecies predicted by this aged man are written, we would find something predicted about his posterity now living. I think he would tell about his coming as the Ancient of Days, the great Prince, to his posterity. He told his children in that grand Conference all about it, and they understood it, and it was all written in the Book of Enoch, to be testified to in due time. These perhaps are some of the books that are to be opened on that grand occasion.

You may ask, Why the necessity of this vast multitude from the heavens to assemble here on the earth? It is to fulfill many prophecies besides that of Daniel; it is to fulfill prophecies that have been predicted by all holy men that understood the great events of the latter days, that the Saints who are in heaven are to come down here on the earth, and are to be organized here on the earth, and are to be united with the Saints on the earth, as one grand company, each one understanding his place. I do not think there will be any contentions or jealousies, as for instance, whether the high Priests are greater than the Seventies, but all will understand their proper place and position, because their positions will be pointed out to them by the Ancient of Days, the father and prince of all, even down to those last ordained to the Priesthood. Perhaps these records will recall the positions we are all to occupy; for I believe, to the Lord was known the end from the beginning.

But why all this? Why should it be given to all to know their proper places? Why should the books be opened, and why should the fourth beast be destroyed and the body given to the burning flame? It is explained in the same connection—“I saw in the night visions, and behold one like the Son of Man came with the clouds of heaven.”

To whom does this glorious personage come? He comes to the Ancient of Days. What, that personage coming in glory, majesty and dominion, with the clouds of heaven, to the Ancient of Days! What for? In order that he might receive from him the kingdom, in its order, every person standing in his proper position, everything organized after the most perfect order. The Ancient of Days delivers up the kingdom, thus completed, to the Son of Man, whose dominion becomes so great that all peoples, nations and languages serve him; and his dominion is everlasting and shall have no end.

I do not know how there could be anything more perfect for the coming of Christ than what is here recorded. It is certainly a great and grand work; and without such a work everything would be in confusion at his coming. How great and glorious will be that period when Jesus will come in the clouds of heaven! He makes this preparation beforehand, so that there may be a people ready to receive him. People of mortality, as well as immortal beings, all knowing their positions, will form the grand Council, and they will be organized ready to receive Jesus when he comes to reign as King of kings and Lord of lords upon this earth.

Do you think there will then be any quarrelling about political or other matters pertaining to the government? I do not think there will then exist, in that grand Council, the condition of affairs which we see presented here in our own nation. There will be no quarrelling about a president or any other position. All things then will be regulated by the law of God. That will be recognized in those days. A feeling of perfect unanimity will exist among the people, and division and dissension will be unknown. We have had so much division in our country, and among the nations, for so many generations that it has become a common thing among the people. In order to be enlightened and independent and liberal, it is thought that every man must be against his neighbor, and every man must set up his judgment in relation to matters, though it may be in contradistinction to that of his neighbor’s. All this, in a government like our republic, is acknowledged as legitimate. Let a man now be brought forward as a candidate for the presidency of the United States, against whose private character not a syllable has been uttered and you will soon see even the most respectable of our newspapers turn with slander against him; everything they can imagine having a tendency to injure him, in the estimation of the public, will be said of him; and if the people generally believed it, he would be considered one of the wickedest of men, and his character would be blackened from the Atlantic to the Pacific. This cannot be a system of true republicanism; it must be the result of the imperfections of fallen man, and consequently it must pass away and be forgotten. But when the kingdom of heaven shall be fully established, I do not think there will be the least division; everything will be conducted perfectly; and hence peace and union will exist. Those who will dictate the affairs of that kingdom will be one, even the same as the Father and the Son are one. Do you suppose the Father quarrels with the Son about matters of government? Not in the least; they are perfectly united. Why are they thus united? Because each one understands that the other is in possession of knowledge, and wisdom, and purity, and holiness, and both being intelligent and pure, comprehending the end from the beginning, therefore both are in perfect accord with each other in all things. You will remember the prayer of the Savior, “Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word.” He prayed that all they who should believe might become one, even as he and the Father are one. But was he not mistaken? Would he not do away with our liberty and independence, if all who believed should become one? Such a condition would not give us the opportunity of quarrelling with each other. Unity is the greatest and most heavenly principle of government. If we can find out what is right, would it not promote the peace and welfare of all to carry out in unity every principle of right, and discourage that which is wrong?

Another prayer, one that is generally used, and which Jesus gave to his disciples, was, “Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven,” etc. His government must be established here, and his will must be done in perfection, as it is in heavenly worlds. It is folly in the extreme for man to argue that our liberty would be curtailed were this prayer to be answered on our heads today. On the contrary our independence would be enhanced; for we would then, as a matter of course, be more like unto the great Captain of our salvation. If the will of God were really done on earth as in heaven, a state of peace and happiness would exist, there would be little complaining or murmuring, and the people would have entire confidence in each other. On going to their beds at night they would have no need to go to the trouble of locking their doors and seeing that everything was secure from theft, for there would be no thieving, no one to wrong his neighbor, in any way whatever. If you had anything you wished left in the open air during the day or night, it would not matter how valuable it might be, you could do so without entertaining the least fear of anybody taking it from you.

This will be the order of things to exist here on the earth, and which will be recognized by all nations that will then exist, and it will continue for a thousand years. And at the expiration of that time this kind of government will not even then be done away, although as many as can be influenced by Satan to apostatize will do so, at that time, and there will be a great division of the people, at the end of the thousand years. The Saints then, will have become very numerous, probably more numerous than ever before; and they will be obliged to gather together in one place, as we now do from the four quarters of the earth. They will have to pitch their camps round about, for the “beloved city” will not be large enough for them. It is called by John the Revelator, the camp of the Saints, a beloved city, where the Saints gather to, from the nations of the earth. Satan will gather his army, consisting of all those angels that fell and left the courts of heaven, when he did, besides all those that will apostatize from the truth, at the end of the thousand years: they too will mingle with the immortal ones of Satan’s army, all being of the same spirit and mind. He with his army will come against the Saints, and the beloved city, and encompass them round about. His army will be so great that it will be able to come upon the Saints on all sides: he is to encompass their camp. Because of the favorable position he is to hold, in that great last battle, and because of the vast number of his army, he doubtless believes that he will get the mastery and subdue the earth and possess it. I do not think he fully understands all about the designs of God: for John tells us when this great army shall be gathered in position, around the camp of the Saints, that “fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.” Devoured whom? Not those who are fallen angels, for they have no bodies to be devoured; but this fire from heaven will devour the wicked apostate race who will have listened to them and who will have joined Satan’s army; they will be consumed, consequently the kingdom of Christ will not be overcome by Satan or taken away from the Saints. Remember the words of Daniel—“The kingdom shall not be destroyed, neither shall it be given to another people.” Though they apostatize at the end of the thousand years, though they seek every possible plan to overthrow the kingdom, though they may gather up their strength and have Satan and his fallen angels to fight with them, yet that kingdom that was organized at the beginning of the thousand years will still exist. Fire is the great agency that will devour the wicked, after which this camp and beloved city and all the inhabitants belonging to it will be caught up to heaven.

Then comes the period and time when the earth must undergo its final change, far exceeding any former changes. For at the beginning of the Millennium, the mountains will melt, and flow down like wax at the presence of the Lord; then the earth is to be moved exceedingly and tossed to and fro. Though the ocean is to roll back to its former position; although these and many other wonderful changes will take place when Christ comes, they are nothing compared to the changes that are to take place after the thousand years, after Satan’s army is destroyed. Then the great white throne appears. There, after the holy city and the New Jerusalem are taken up to heaven, the earth will flee away from before the presence of him who sits upon the throne. The earth itself is to pass through a similar change to that which we have to pass through. As our bodies return again to mother dust, forming constituent portions thereof, and no place is found for them as organized bodies; so it will be with this earth. Not only will the elements melt with fervent heat, but the great globe itself will pass away. It will cease to exist as an organized world. It will cease to exist as one of the worlds that are capable of being inhabited. Fire devours all things, converting the earth into its original elements; it passes away into space.

But not one particle of the elements which compose the earth will be destroyed or annihilated. They will all exist and be brought together again by a greater organizing power than is known to man. The earth must be resurrected again, as well as our bodies; its elements will be reunited, and they will be brought together by the power of God’s word. He will then so organize these elements now constituted upon this earth, that there will be no curse attached to any of its compound thus made. Now death is connected with them, but then everything will be organized in the most perfect order, just the same as it was when the Lord first formed it. He then pronounced everything as “very good.” It could not be otherwise; a being that is infinite in wisdom and knowledge, and a being that had power in proportion to it, could organize an earth into a most perfect form; and he did so and pronounced the same very good. But man brought a curse on the earth. Man brought a change, not only on man, but upon the animal creation, and not only upon the animal creation, but upon all the elements of which the earth was formed. This curse was, as it were, transfused throughout every particle of the creation, so that wherever you turn your eyes death, and destruction, and sorrow exist. But the same Being that organized it, and pronounced it very good, will organize it again. It will come forth again from its condition of chaos, by the power of his word, a celestial body, prepared for the abode of a higher order of beings, those who have kept the celestial law, those who, through obedience to the laws of God, become exalted. They are the ones who will have the privilege of inheriting the earth forever and ever. When he gets it all prepared, he will bring down the inhabitants thereof, the holy city, the New Jerusalem.

I propose making a few remarks in relation to that city, for the benefit of strangers, should there be any present. We look upon the New Jerusalem, separate from the old Jerusalem. The old Jerusalem will be rebuilt by the Jews upon its former site, and during the Millennium it will become a very glorious city, and its inhabitants will be a blessed and honored people. We are told by the Prophet Ether, that the Lord will build a city on this American continent, which will be called the New Jerusalem. The reason it will be called new is because it never before existed here. Both of these cities will be caught up, when the earth undergoes its final dissolution, and when made new, they will come back again, the New Jerusalem first, followed by the old Jerusalem.

A great many have supposed that the description of the glory and beauty of the city that comes down from heaven was the New Jerusalem, but it is not so. That description given by John in relation to the second city, was a holy city—old Jerusalem. We have an account of its walls and the height of them, we have, too, an account of its twelve gates, its houses and its inhabitants, and also of the glory of God that shall be in the city. But have we any enlarged description of the New Jerusalem? No. I have no doubt, however, that the city of the New Jerusalem will be equally glorious with the one that John saw and described.

John saw the New Jerusalem coming down from heaven and speaks of its inhabitants. Then one of the angels took him away to a high mountain, and showed him the second city, when descending to the earth.

The Book of Mormon speaks very plainly upon this subject. The Prophet Ether, as recorded in the latter part of the book, speaking of these two cities, says, that both are built by man, under the direction of the Almighty; and that the Lord has decreed that when they are built, they shall not waste away nor be destroyed. There are a great many of our houses that are wasting. You may build them of granite, and half a thousand of years will begin to waste them away. Thus it is with whatever material, used in building our cities; while man is under the curse there will a constant wasting away of his habitations. But not so, with regard to the old Jerusalem, which is to be rebuilt; and not so with regard to the New Jerusalem, which is to be built on this Continent. Why not? Because God is all-powerful, and when he makes a decree in relation to anything, it must be fulfilled. If he said to the ancient Nephites, Record your prophecies and writings upon plates of gold, and I will preserve them, that they shall not wax dim, that time shall not have power to waste them; but the records shall be preserved, he was abundantly able to preserve them by his power, and fulfill his promise. The same Being, who is able to preserve the sacred records, has power to preserve sacred and holy habitations.

Therefore, Latter-day Saints, when you return to build up the waste places of Zion, and when you build up the New Jerusalem upon the place that he has appointed, whatever materials shall be used, by the blessing of the Priesthood, which God has ordained, these materials will endure forever: they will continue during the thousand years, without waste, and when they shall be caught up to heaven, when the earth flees away, they will still endure in all their perfection and beauty. When these cities shall descend again upon the new earth, in its immortal and eternal state, they will still be as endurable as the earth itself, no more to be subject to the curse, and therefore, will no more waste; death is gone—everything that is corruptible in its nature has ceased, so far as this habitable globe is concerned, and all sorrow and mourning are done away.

May God bless the Latter-day Saints, and may our minds be kept steadfast upon the nature and glory of the promises to the righteous, and the great events that must be fulfilled, looking for the coming of the Church of the Firstborn, looking for the day of peace, the day of rest, when Jesus shall reign king of kings as he now reigns in heaven.

May the Lord stir up the minds of his people that they may seek for those things in the future, and may we put away from our minds everything calculated in its nature to shut out the spirit of the living God from our hearts, is my earnest prayer, in the name of Jesus. Amen.

The Great Privilege of Having a Temple Completed—Past Efforts for this Purpose—Remarks on Conduct—Earth, Heaven, and Hell, Looking at the Latter-Day Saints—Running After Holes in The Ground—Arrangements for the Future

Remarks by President Brigham Young, delivered at the Temple, St. George, Jan. 1, 1877.

I cannot consent in my feelings to retire from this house without exercising my strength, the strength of my lungs, stomach and speaking organs, in speaking to this people. I hardly dare say what is in my heart to say to this people. Perhaps it would not be prudent, but I will say a few encouraging things to the Latter-day Saints, that is, they ought to be encouraging. We that are here are enjoying a privilege that we have no knowledge of any other people enjoying since the days of Adam, that is, to have a Temple completed, wherein all the ordinance of the house of God can be bestowed upon his people. Brethren and sisters, do you understand this? It seems that a great many of the people know nothing about it. It is true that Solomon built a Temple for the purpose of giving endowments, but from what we can learn of the history of that time they gave very few if any endowments, and one of the high priests was murdered by wicked and corrupt men, who had already begun to apostatize, because he would not reveal those things appertaining to the Priesthood that were forbidden him to reveal until he came to the proper place. I will not say but what Enoch had Temples and officiated therein, but we have no account of it. We know that he raised up a people so pure and holy that they were not permitted to remain with the wicked inhabitants of the earth, but were taken to another place. We as Latter-day Saints have been laboring for over forty years, and the revelations given us in the first were to establish the kingdom by gathering the Saints, building Temples, and organizing the people as the family of heaven here on the earth. We reared up a Temple in Kirtland, but we had no basement in it, nor a font, nor preparations to give endowments for the living or the dead. It was left by the Saints before it was completed, they going to Missouri. Joseph located the site for the Temple Block in Jackson County, Missouri, and pointed out the southeast corner of the Temple in the year 1831—also laid the cornerstone for a Temple in Far West, Caldwell County, Mo. These Temples were not built. We built one in Nauvoo. I could pick out several before me now that were there when it was built, and know just how much was finished and what was done. It is true we left brethren there with instructions to finish it, and they got it nearly completed before it was burned, but the Saints did not enjoy it. Now we have a Temple which will all be finished in a few days, and of which there is enough completed to commence work therein which has not been done since the days of Adam, that we have any knowledge of. Now those that can see the spiritual atmosphere can see that many of the Saints are still glued to this earth and lusting and longing after the things of this world, in which there is no profit. It is true, we should look after the things of this world and devote all to the building up of the kingdom of God. According to the present feelings of many of our brethren, they would arrogate to themselves this world and all that pertains to it, and cease not day nor night to see that it was devoted to the building up of the kingdom of the devil, and if they had the power they would build a railroad to carry it to hell and establish themselves there. Where are the eyes and the hearts of this people? Where is their interest for their own salvation and that of their forefathers? We enjoy privileges that are enjoyed by no one else on the face of the earth. Suppose we were awake to this thing, namely, the salvation of the human family, this house would be crowded, as we hope it will be, from Monday morning until Saturday night. This house was built here in this place purposely, where it is warm and pleasant in the winter time, and comfortable to work, also for the Lamanites, and also those coming from the south, and other places to receive their endowments, and other blessings. What do you suppose the fathers would say if they could speak from the dead? Would they not say, “We have lain here thousands of years, here in this prison house, waiting for this dispensation to come? Here we are, bound and fettered, in the association of those who are filthy?” What would they whisper in our ears? Why, if they had the power the very thunders of heaven would be in our ears, if we could but realize the importance of the work we are engaged in. All the angels in heaven are looking at this little handful of people, and stimulating them to the salvation of the human family. So also are the devils in hell looking at this people, too, and trying to overthrow us, and the people are still shaking hands with the servants of the devil, instead of sanctifying themselves and calling upon the Lord and doing the work which he has commanded us and put into our hands to do. When I think upon this subject, I want the tongues of seven thunders to wake up the people. Can the fathers be saved without us? No. Can we be saved without them? No, and if we do not wake up and cease to long after the things of this earth, we will find that we as individuals will go down to hell, although the Lord will preserve a people unto himself. Now we are ready to give endowments, do you have any feelings for those who have died without having the Gospel? The spirit was awakened in the people in the north when we gave the word that we should do no more work in the Endowment House—they came to us crying and pleading to be baptized for their dead. What else could they do? They can come here and do the work for their dead, and put these poor prisoners on the ground where they will be free. Do we realize this? As long as we tarry here, we are sub ject to the world. But now go to, like men and women, and say, we will embrace the truth and enter into the covenants of God and carry them out. Then the bonds are broken, and the hearts of the people are united in the Father. Perhaps, brethren and sisters, you will not get my meaning, but now go to work and let these holes in the ground alone, and let the Gentiles alone, who would destroy us if they had the power. You are running after them, and some of our brethren are putting their wives and daughters into their society, and will go to the devil with them too, if they do not look out. I would not have a dollar on the earth if I had to get it there. It has been the kingdom of God with me. What I have, I have got in this kingdom. Well, now, some of the Elders are running after these holes in the ground, and I see men before me, in this house that have no right to be here. They are as corrupt in their hearts as they can be, and we take them by the hand and call them brother. You will go to hell, lots of you, unless you repent. You may think this is plain talk, it is not as plain as you will find by and by. If you should ever go to the gates of heaven, Jesus will say he never knew you. While you have been saying your prayers and going to your meetings and are as corrupt in your hearts as men can be. You had better stop now and repent of your sins and sin no more, while there is yet time, and before the doors are closed against you. I want to wake you up, and if I had the power to lift the veil from your eyes and let you see things as they are, you would be astonished. Not but what there are a great majority of the people as good as they know how to be. Now I will say, bless the people, that they may do better, but show some of the Elders of Israel according to their present conduct a dollar on one side and eternal life on the other, and I fear they would choose the dollar.

We are now prepared to attend to baptizing and giving endowments, and shall appoint Tuesdays and Wednesdays for baptisms, and Thursdays and Fridays for endowments and sealings, as a standing appointment for the present.

God bless you. Amen.

Respect to the Dead—Pre-Existence the Key to This—The Future Life Depends on This—The Latter-day Saints Dependent Upon Revelation for Their Knowledge of These Things—Life Persecutions As Nothing, Contrasted With the Promises Pertaining to the Future—Men’s Future Glories As Are the Laws They Abide

A Funeral Sermon, Preached by Elder John Taylor, delivered at the 14th Ward Assembly Rooms, Salt Lake City, Sunday, Dec. 31, 1876, Over the Remains of Sister Mary Ann, the Beloved Wife of Elder George E. Bourne.

We are met together on this occasion, as we frequently are called upon to do, to pay our last respects to the departed dead. This is one of the incidents connected with humanity, and one that always commands our serious attention. There has an immutable decree gone forth from the Almighty, that man must die; and it matters not what our standing in society or station in life may be, all alike must submit to the divine behest.

When we look back to the generations that have passed, letting our minds wander through the various ages that have transpired since the commencement of the human family upon the earth, we see, as it were, multitudes of human beings who have had their entrance into and exit from this world, a great rolling wave of human life coming and going. They have existed simply for a short time, mingling with and operating among their fellow beings, and then they have faded away, their bodies have decayed and returned to mother earth, while they themselves have left this world and gone into another state of existence.

We might bring this reflection a little nearer home, by inquiring, How many are there yet living of my acquaintances who were in existence when I was born? But few comparatively; and so it is with a great many others. We come into the world, we think and reflect, we act and operate, we carry out certain ideas, plans and calculations, we live but a short time and then die, leaving all things with which we were connected pretty much as they were when we came here.

We frequently talk of the advancements made in society and the progression of the world generally in intelligence, in science, in literature, etc. But what is all that to the man when he is about to leave his earthly tenement, to go hence? Of what moment is it to him how bright his genius, or how expansive and varied his learning may be? It makes no difference, he is gone, and is apparently helpless and inanimate, at least so far as the body is concerned. We struggle sometimes while we are occupants of these mortal bodies, for riches and position, for fame and honor. We jostle one against another, entertaining various conflicting sentiments, ideas and theories, but they are all leveled with the balance in the grave. Such has been and such is the position of the human family.

There is a scripture which reads, “And as it is appointed unto man once to die, but after this the judgment.” If we are only to be associated with this world, if, when this vital spark expires, we end our entire existence, it would be scarcely worth while to pay that attention to its affairs that we do, merely for so short a time. But when we reflect, we are reminded that man is a dual being, possessing a body and a spirit, and that he is associated with this world and the next, that he is connected with time and eternity. It then becomes a matter of more grave and serious importance. These are things which we cannot ignore, even if we would. According to our ideas of things as they have been revealed to us, we had an existence before we came here. We came here to accomplish a certain purpose which was decreed by the Almighty before the world was. We came to receive bodies or tabernacles, and in them to pass through a certain amount of trial in what is termed a probationary state of existence, preparatory to a something to be developed hereafter. Hence this world is the state of our probation, and we look forward to the future as something with which we are as much connected as we are with anything pertaining to time. We look forward to another state of existence with that degree of certainty and confidence that we do when we go to bed in the evening expecting to see the light of the sun in the morning, or that we do with anything else that is associated with any of the affairs of this world upon which we place any degree of certainty. Were it not so, it would be, as I have already stated, of very little importance what our struggles were, or what we had to do within this world. We would feel, as Paul philosophically describes it, namely, “If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.” And then he further says, “If the dead rise not, let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die.” Or, in other words, if in this world only we have hope, let us seize upon any and every opportunity presented to us and enjoy life, mingle with and join in the giddy strife of the world, and glide along with the stream, for our days are but a span, as a shadow they pass away and we are no more.

But it so happens that we regard these things in a very different point of view, it having been revealed to us from heaven what the position of man was, what it now is, and what it will be. In relation to this, no matter what our religious sentiments may be, or what the views of men are pertaining to these matters, there is a kind of inexorable fiat that comes down the stream of time, that sweeps away the human family one after another—the good and the bad, the righteous and the unrighteous, the rich and the poor, all classes, all grades and all conditions must submit to it. It is true, we read of some very few individuals who have avoided it. For instance, Enoch and his city were caught up without seeing death. We read that when Moses departed this life, his body could not be found. Elijah, too, ascended up to heaven without dying. Also John, the revelator, was permitted to live upon the earth until the Savior should come, and the Book of Mormon gives an account of three Nephites, who lived on this American Continent, who asked for the same privilege and it was granted to them.

I am not now talking to the dead; she is gone, she has left us, her ear is not sensitive to our voice, her faculties are dormant; but I am speaking to the living. In reflecting upon these matters we must see that in a short time we shall be in the condition that our sister is, whose remains now lie before us. The question that necessarily arises, and it is one that engages the attention of all people of every age and country, is, What of the future? Men have had their various theories in relation to these matters, which have differed more or less according to the day and age in which they lived, according to the intelligence they possessed, and according to the circumstances with which they were surrounded, over which, perhaps, they had very little control. All men, more or less, however, have had a desire to aim at exaltation in the hereafter, or happiness of some kind. They have had feelings in their bosoms that would naturally lead them to this. I do not remember reading of any people, no matter how low and degraded they were, but what had some kind of ideas, more or less distinct, in relation to the future, though they were and now are very much confused in some particulars, worshiping, for instance, gods made of gold, silver, brass, etc., and in some ages they had thousands of gods. But why did they worship them? Because they believed they had something to do with their destiny, and they wanted to secure their favor and approbation. There are a great many of these feelings existing at the present time among the heathen nations. There are some who believe that when they die they go into the bodies of beasts and various animals and occupy them; and others, that there is some kind of happiness provided for them. They used to talk in early days about the Elysian Fields, after having passed the river “Styx,” where they anticipated some kind of pleasant enjoyment, the nature of which they knew not. There is a very large body of men at the present time who are what is called Muhammadans, and they have their peculiar ideas of heaven. Then we have Christianity in all its phases, with all its ideas, theories, opinions, plans and calculations, which are as much diversified perhaps as anything in existence upon the face of the earth today. There is, too, a lack of certainty and intelligence generally in relation to these matters. Some of the Indians believe that when they die they go to some pleasant hunting grounds, where there is plenty of buffalo, elk and deer, and where they can revel in the enjoyment of the chase, and where they can possess everything necessary to make them comfortable.

As Latter-day Saints we differ from all of them. We are dependent upon the revelations which God has given unto us pertaining to the future, and which are in strict accordance with revelations which he gave at different times to his ancient Saints. Our faith and opinion are that being dual, immortal beings, possessing a body and a spirit, associated with time and eternity, it is proper for us to know and comprehend something pertaining to the future; and not, as is generally done by mankind, take a leap, as it were, in the dark; or as I have frequently heard people say, and Christians at that, “We do not know anything about the future, we have got to leave ourselves entirely in the hands of God.” Of course we have all got to do that, and that too is proper in one sense of the word. But there were men in former times that had very different ideas from this; they lived back, away back, in what they now call the “dark ages.” For instance, I will name Job and quote you language expressing his mind on this point. “For I know that my Redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth; and though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God; whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not for another.” There is something expressed in that very different from the vague, indefinite idea that many Christians seem to entertain in relation to these things. There is something definite and certain about it. I know, said Job. How did he know? A man could know nothing pertaining to the future so far off, could know nothing about the vitalizing, quickening influence of certain powers, that could so operate upon the remnants of humanity that had been buried in the grave, as to bring them forth to life, causing them to see, to hear, and to understand. How and by what principle could he see these things develop, unless by some super-human influence which had been manifested to him? He could only know it upon this principle—that “the things of God knoweth no man, but by the spirit of God,” and being, too, in possession of that spirit and possessed of life and light and intelligence that flow from God, he looked through the dark vista of future ages and comprehended the pur poses of God in regard to the human family and in regard to himself. John the revelator, too, “saw the dead, small and great, stand before God;” he saw the sea give up the dead which were in it. Others saw, by the same spirit, the grave open and the power of God rest upon the people therein, and then burst the barriers of the tomb, coming forth again with health and vitality. There is no human reason, no human intelligence, with all its boasted enlightenment and scientific research, that could unravel a mystery of this kind. Yet, away back in the dark ages, a man inspired by the spirit of God is heard to say, “I know that my Redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth;” and he knew too that in his flesh he would see God. Such language has a tendency to bring certain ideas, thoughts and reflections to our minds. An intelligence of this kind is not a phantom, it is a reality.

If we follow out the Scriptures in relation to these things, we find the same principles developed and the same ideas entertained wherever they had the Gospel of the Son of God, wherever they had the light and intelligence that flow from him. Amongst all peoples wherever the Gospel existed this intelligence prevailed, and it was that which buoyed them up and sustained them amidst all the vicissitudes and changes which they had to battle with in passing through time. Men of such persuasion were generally considered visionary. They were scouted at by others who were considered more practical, but whom I should call fools. They had to endure all kinds of ignominy and reproach; in fact it was and is so ordered that it becomes necessary, in this probationary state, that they should pass through certain ordeals in order to prepare and qualify them for something that was to come. They had these things to pass through and they could not avoid it. Job was upbraided by his friends and persecuted by his enemies; he was robbed and stripped of everything he owned in the world, even bereft of his children, and his wife, his bosom companion, turned upon him, saying to him at last, “Curse God and die!” But said Job, “What? shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil?” “The Lord gave and the Lord hath taken away, blessed be the name of the Lord.” Why was it that he had to be thus tried? That he might, as stated elsewhere, be made perfect through suffering. (1 Peter, 5, 10.)

We read again of a certain man who, while enwrapped in vision, saw many of the purposes of God roll forth; and among other things he saw a number that were clothed in white raiment, and who were engaged in singing a new song. Upon inquiring who those persons were, he was told that they had come “up through much tribulation.” What, men having to endure tribulation for fearing God and keeping his commandments? Yes; and it was necessary, in the wisdom of God, that they should. Those were they that came up through much tribulation having washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. And therefore are they next the throne and serve their Maker day and night.

There are some peculiar lessons and important instructions developed in many of these things, as we see them portrayed. I speak now to the Latter-day Saints. We, a few of us, have had our share of these things. I have seen people, in the early days, who had to pass through a good deal—stripped, robbed, pillaged, beaten, killed, murdered for their religion’s sake. They were driven from their homes, they wandered about as exiles. They could truly say as Jesus once said, “The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head.” They had not where to rest themselves except on the bare earth, whereon I have seen hundreds and thousands of Latter-day Saints find their shelter, when they were fleeing from the hands of merciless, ignorant Christian people. Did they know what they were doing? No. Did the Saints know what they were doing, and the object of their suffering? Yes, and they do to this day. They had implanted in them a hope, which comes through obedience to the Gospel of the Son of God, that blooms with immortality and eternal life. It was in view of these things, like it was with some that Paul speaks of—they “were tempted, they were tried, they were persecuted, they were whipped and sawn asunder; they wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins, finding their homes in dens and caves of the earth, of whom the world was not worthy.” These very people that endured these things the world was not worthy of; and they declared plainly that “they sought a better country, even a heavenly, wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God. For he hath prepared for them a city, a city which has foundations, whose builder and maker is God.” The very thing that Jesus said they should have when he spoke to his disciples and said, “In my Father’s house are many mansions. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am ye may be also.”

There is something about these ideas, animating and cheering, that gives life and vigor to the human mind while traveling through the world, and having to meet with the various conflicts and difficulties that frequently obstruct our path.

Looking upon ourselves as eternal beings, connected with heaven as well as earth, with eternity as well as time, what difference is it to us what our lot may be, whether we abound in wealth, or whether we have to struggle with grim poverty; whether we possess the good things of this world, or have to crawl around like Lazarus did, and be glad to eat of the crumbs that fell from the rich man’s table? It will soon be with the rich as if they were not rich, and with the poor as if they had not to struggle—all will find a level in the grave.

What are our views pertaining to the future? What claim have we on the Almighty? Can we say as one did, “For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens?” If we can say that, it is all right; no difference what our position, no difference what our circumstances, if our hearts are pure before God, and our spirits are upright, and we conscientiously feel that we are in the line of our duty, living in the fear of God and are enabled to cleave to him and keep his commandments, and walk in accordance with his precepts, all is right. No matter whether we live long or short, it makes no difference, God takes care of his people, and all is well.

Do we have trials? Yes, and it is necessary that we should; but whatever you do, let not your trials interfere with your duties and responsibilities to God. If troubles do come along, and we find it hard to battle with the things of life, never mind, let us cleave to God, to truth, to virtue, to righteousness, and main tain our integrity, and we will always feel that God is our friend, and that all is well. We will feel like saying, let the winds blow, and the rain descend, and the storms come, no matter what position we occupy, if God gives us power to breast the conflict, if we keep the commandments of God, and have our faith and hopes centered in the Lord beyond the veil, we shall feel that God is our Father and friend, and we are his children, and that he will own us and take care of us in time as well as in the eternities to come.

Well, what about others? Are you not very proscriptive in your feelings? No, not at all. I am willing, as an individual, to endure anything that God may be pleased to place upon me, inasmuch as I have his grace to sustain me. I can do nothing of myself, neither can you, without the divine assistance. Have I my weaknesses? Yes. Have you weaknesses? Yes. Are any of us perfect? No. We are placed in this world to prove us. What shall we do? Why, fear the Lord and do the best we can, trusting in him. If we do that, all is right pertaining to the future. But what are we all aiming at? I am looking for a celestial glory. I want to be associated with the Church of the Firstborn, whose names are written in the heavens, and with Prophets and Apostles, and with all the holy men of God who were inspired with the same hopes, who lived generations ago, as well as with such men who now live. If I can only fight the good fight of faith, and lay hold of eternal life, then all is right. What of others? They are in the hands of God, and so are we. But are we all going to get into the celestial kingdom? I am afraid not. Not all the Latter-day Saints? I am afraid not. We read that many are called, but few are chosen. We read also that there were five wise and five foolish virgins. The wise virgins, we are told, had oil in their lamps, and their lamps were trimmed and burning. They were prepared to meet the bridegroom whom they expected. The others had no oil in their lamps at the time the cry was raised for all to go forth and meet their Lord. They had become careless and indifferent, and while the foolish virgins were away trying to procure oil for their lamps, the bridegroom came, and only those who were prepared to meet him went in with him, when the door was shut. “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.” That is the way I read these things.

Now, then, we have these principles before us, and it is for us to do right, and act honorably and virtuously, uprightly and consistently, and all will be well. If we do not, it will not be well, for every man will be judged according to the deeds done in the body. And in regard to others who receive not the Gospel, they too will be judged according to their works. Did God make any of his children for the purpose of destroying them? I think not. I think he will do the very best he can with all of us. But will he take the disobedient and the careless and indifferent ones into the celestial kingdom, to dwell with him and with the just who are made perfect? I think not. There are bodies celestial, bodies terrestrial, and bodies telestial. “There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars; for one star differeth from another star in glory. So also is the resurrection of the dead.” To judge from these facts, does it look to you reasonable that all the Latter-day Saints will get into the celestial kingdom of our God? To me it does not. But the Lord has revealed to the children of men many great things, and has taught them many great principles; if they do not receive those principles, and adhere to them, and keep his commandments, are they to be damned and buried in hell forever? I think not.

Some of our sectarian friends think that we have curious ideas about them. I tell you what it arises from. We are aiming at what we term a celestial glory. They do not understand this. Will they get a glory? Yes, they will get all that they are looking for, just as much as they can abide, as much as it is possible for God to center upon them under the circumstances. And will the heathen be saved? Yes, all the children of God, no matter by what name they are called, will be saved, receiving as high a glory and salvation as they are capable of receiving. But are all going to inherit a celestial glory? No, but the degree of their glory will altogether be ahead of their ideas with regard to it. It may doubtless be said of them, as it was said of others, that “eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” These are facts which we all Latter-day Saints entertain, and God does, and who would raise an objection?

Because we have been persecuted and maltreated, should we entertain feelings of hatred and animosity for the human family? No! All good Latter-day Saints who possess the light and life of Christ, who have thus suffered, feel as Jesus did during his moments of bitterest pain, when he said, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” God is the God and Father of all the spirits of all flesh that now live, that have lived through all the ages of time, and he is interested in the welfare and salvation of all; but he, as well as we, is governed by law, and hence he is no respecter of persons, but gives unto all according to their works. I have set my mark high, and if God will give me grace sufficient to overcome every evil and to surmount every trial, I intend to continue to fight the good fight of faith, and lay hold of eternal life.

With regard to sister Bourne, to whose remains we now pay our last respects and which lie before us, it is all right, all right! I too have had my friends leave me. Do I feel sorry? No. They have gone and they rest from earthly trouble, and I expect to follow after them. I well remember the conversation I had with my father when he was about to depart this life. I said, “Father, you are going?” He said, “Yes.” I then said, “That is right, father you came into the world a little before me, and you are leaving a little before. I will not try to disgrace you, and by and by I will come too.” It is true, we do not like to lose a good, kind companion, a wife, a husband, a child, a brother, a sis ter, or any of our near and dear friends or relatives; but we have to do it, and it is right and proper that we should. They go a little before us; when we get there they will receive and welcome us, and say, “God bless you, you have come at last.” That is the way I look at it. I expect to strike hands and embrace my friends who have gone before, who have proved themselves faithful and true. Why should I mourn when they leave? Of course, I like their company and association, but it was not designed that I should always have it here. We came here to live, and to die that we may live; and we are all moving, moving, passing off this stage of time. It is for us to prepare for the eternities to come.

I pray God to comfort the hearts of the husband, children, relatives and friends of this our departed sister, and say, May the peace and blessings of God be and abide with you, and may he lead us in the paths of life, and enable us to struggle for the glory and exaltation that are within our reach, until we shall have overcome, and be prepared to enter into the celestial kingdom of the Father, which may God grant for Christ’s sake. Amen.

Burial Services, An Ancient Practice—God, the God of the Living—Keys Committed to Joseph Smith. The Last Dispensation—Jesus the Great Redeemer—An Everlasting Priesthood—The Powers of the Resurrection—Scriptural, Philosophical, and Certain—Sealing Powers Eternal

A Funeral Sermon, Preached by Elder John Taylor, delivered at the 7th Ward Meetinghouse, Salt Lake City, on Sunday Afternoon, Dec. 31, 1876, Over the Remains of Ann Tenora, the Wife of Isaac Waddell; and Also Over the Remains of George W., Son of Edward Callister.

After the reading of the 15th chapter of 1st Corinthians, commencing at the 20th verse, by Elder David McKenzie, Elder Taylor said:

It is a sad thing to meet together as we have done on the present occasion, and to find here two of our friends from different families who have been smitten by the hand of the destroyer, thus having to attend to a double funeral ceremony. It seems to be my lot today to be mixed up with these matters, for I have just come from attending to one funeral in the 14th Ward; and now I meet again with you to join in paying our last sad respects to the departed dead. There is something about these things that touches the most sympathetic feelings of human nature. God having planted these things in our bosoms, I presume it is right and proper that they should be exercised and cherished.

In reading the history of some of the ancient men of God, such, for instance, as Jacob, Joseph, Abraham and others, there was great reverence and respect evinced towards them, not only by their friends and relatives, but by strangers. On the death of Jacob there was a very large concourse of people assembled from the land of Egypt, including “The servants of Pharaoh, the Elders of his house, and all the Elders of the land of Egypt, and all the house of Joseph and his brethren and his father’s house. And there went up with him both chariots and horsemen, and it was a very great company, and they mourned with a great and very sore lamentation.” The Egyptians joined with the relatives in mourning his death. The same feeling was manifested when Joseph and others died. Then were feelings of sympathy manifested towards the bereaved and also towards the dead. These feelings exist more or less among us. We, like them, have ideas pertaining to the future, that are pregnant with importance and that are full of interest to every reflective mind.

When Abraham died, Isaac knew that he was a man of God; he had unquestionably heard his father talk over communications he had had with God, and he doubtless knew very well, when he was taken by his father to be offered up as a sacrifice, that it was in obedience to a commandment of God; he knew very well that his father had communications with the Lord and received revelations from him, and that he had distinct and correct ideas also in regard to the future. Jesus, you will remember, in speaking of Abraham, said, “Abraham saw my day and was glad.” Abraham had promises made to him pertaining to the land of Palestine, that were not really fulfilled in his time; and Stephen, soon after the Savior of the world died, in talking about Abraham, said that God had promised it to his seed; and yet, says Stephen, the Lord “gave him none inheritance in it; no not so much as to set his foot on; yet he promised that he would give it to him for a possession, and his seed after him, when as yet he had no child.” There are men now living among the descendants of Abraham, who expect to see that promise fulfilled, when his descendants will again inherit that land of promise, and when all things spoken of by the mouth of the Prophets will be accomplished. The measuring line will yet go forth again in Jerusalem, and Jerusalem will yet be inhabited on its own place, even in Jerusalem. Abraham will yet realize the fulfillment of the promises made to him and will stand in his proper place and position as their father and the proper representative of his seed in the grand jubilee in this earth, when the purposes of God shall be accom plished pertaining thereunto.

In connection with this it was said on a certain occasion, “I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living.” We also find a statement in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, referring to father Joseph Smith and others, who it is said “sitteth with Abraham at his right hand.” Consequently Abraham lives, and not only Abraham, but father Joseph Smith, as well as many others of our brethren with whom we have been acquainted, who have died true and faithful to the cause. From another revelation, pertaining to one of the High Councils that was organized, we learn that God had taken them to himself and that they retained their Priesthood, that it belonged to them, and no man could take it from them, and that they were with the Lord.

In relation to these things there is something very interesting to all right-minded persons who are good and faithful Latter-day Saints. We believe that these men of whom we have spoken, as well as Adam, Seth, Noah, Enoch, Methuselah and all “the Church of the Firstborn whose names are written in heaven” have their proper position there, as well as the Apostles who lived cotemporary with the Savior. Of these worthies it is said that when Jesus shall come they will come with him, clothed with power and glory. In another place we are told that they, the Apostles, will “sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.”

Again, there are other things associated with these matters, all bearing more or less upon the same points. When God selected Joseph Smith to open up the last dispensation, which is called the dispensa tion of the fullness of times, the Father and the Son appeared to him, arrayed in glory, and the Father, addressing himself to Joseph, at the same time pointing to the Son, said, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him.” As there were great and important events to be introduced into the world associated with the interests of humanity, not only with the people that now are, but with all people that have ever lived upon the face of the earth, and as what is termed the dispensation of the fullness of times was about to be ushered in, Moroni, who held the keys of the unfolding of the Book of Mormon, which is a record of the people who lived upon this American continent, came to Joseph Smith and revealed to him certain things pertaining to the peoples who had lived here and the dealings of God with them, and also in regard to events that are to transpire on this continent.

Then comes another personage, whose name is John the Baptist. He ordained the Prophet Joseph to that portion of the Priesthood of which he held the keys, namely, the Aaronic, or lesser Priesthood. Afterwards came Peter, James and John, who held the keys of the Melchizedek Priesthood, and of the dispensation of the fullness of times, they being the last in their day to whom it was committed, and therefore they came to him and revealed to him the principles pertaining to the Gospel, and the events to be fulfilled. Then we read again of Elias or Elijah, who was to act as a restorer, and who committed to him the powers and authority associated with his position. Then Abraham, who had the Gospel, the Priesthood and Patriarchal powers, in his day; and Moses, who stood at the head of the gathering dispensation in his day, and had these powers conferred upon him. We are informed that Noah, who was a Patriarch, and all in the line of the Priesthood, in every generation back to Adam, who was the first man, possessed the same. Why was it that all these people should be associated with all these dispensations, and all could communicate with Joseph Smith? Because he stood at the head of the dispensation of the fullness of times, which comprehends all the various dispensations that have existed upon the earth, and that as the Gods in the eternal worlds and the Priesthood that officiated in time and eternity had declared that it was time for the issuing forth of all these things, they all combined together to impart to him the keys of their several missions, that he might be fully competent, through the intelligence and aid afforded him through these several parties, to introduce the Gospel in all its fullness, namely, the dispensation of the fullness of times, when, says the Apostle Paul, “He might gather all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are in earth, even in him.” Consequently he stood in that position, and hence his familiarity with all these various dispensations and the men who administered in them. If you were to ask Joseph what sort of a looking man Adam was, he would tell you at once; he would tell you his size and appearance and all about him. You might have asked him what sort of men Peter, James and John were, and he could have told you. Why? Because he had seen them.

We are living in this dispensation, which is pregnant with greater events than any other dispensation that has ever existed on the earth, because in it is embraced all that ever existed anywhere among any people of the earth. Hence why we look upon Joseph Smith as so great and important a character in the world’s history. I think he was one of the greatest Prophets that ever lived, Jesus himself excepted. Enoch was a great man, a mighty Prophet, he had a great many sacred and heavenly things committed to him. He performed a great work in his day—he walked and talked with God, he preached the Gospel and gathered the people as we do, and then he and his city were caught up to heaven, to return to earth in the latter days. He performed his work and afterwards God took him. How Joseph Smith will compare with him will be better understood when Zion is built up and redeemed, and Enoch’s Zion comes down to meet it. They both held important positions and both will stand in their lot as decreed by Jehovah.

Enoch received many revelations and obtained great power from God, and unquestionably the influence of that power was felt by the surrounding peoples. For when certain peoples gathered themselves together against him and his people in a belligerent attitude, Enoch stood forth and prophesied, and the earth shook and trembled, and the people stood afar off and fled from his presence. Of the power he possessed, and the heavenly manifestations he had, we have very little account.

When speaking of these various dispensations, ideas altogether different present themselves to our minds. My mind has been always more or less engaged contemplating the wonderful works of God. Even at an early age, before I became acquainted with the principles of our revealed religion, I frequently used to ask myself, “Who am I? What am I? What am I doing here? What is the object of my earthly being? Where did I come from, and where am I going to?” I have since had the same reflections; but now I have a better method of arriving at conclusions, the Gospel having enlightened me in regard to a great many of these principles. When we entertain and speak of the things of God and his dealings with humanity, we do not deal with things small and insignificant in their character, but with things great and stupendous, things that are worthy the care and supervision of the great God. When the Gods created the earth, they did it for certain purposes. Having organized it according to the eternal purposes of God, they separated the waters from the dry land, so that the land appeared. They next caused light to shine upon it before the sun appeared in the firmament; for God is light, and in him there is no darkness. He is the light of the sun and the power thereof by which it was made; he is also the light of the moon and the power by which it was made; he is the light of the stars and the power by which they were made. He says it is the same light that enlightens the understanding of men. What, have we a mental light and a visual light, all proceeding from the same source? Yes, so says the scripture, and so says science when rightly comprehended. All these things were organized according to the eternal purposes of God in relation to the earth on which we live, and then man was placed upon it; and afterwards the beasts, birds and fishes and seeds of every kind, everything bearing seed after its kind, having power to propagate its own species and perpetuate itself on the earth. I do not wish now to deal with details, for that would lead us from the subject.

What next? Man is placed upon the earth. For what? The very first command given to him was to be fruitful and multiply, and replenish the earth. Or in other words, “I have put you in possession of certain faculties for a certain purpose. I have prepared the earth for you. I have my spirits living with me in the eternal heavens, and in the proper time it is my will that they shall come forth to inhabit tabernacles.” He organizes everything according to these principles. Then man appears in a certain condition, and there is but a shadow between him and the heavens that nothing but the light of the Gospel can remove; a forgetfulness, as if we were puzzled over an uncertain dream; a curtain is spread over the whole human family, and they are thrown upon the world to struggle along as best they can, having to contend against great powers and unseen influences that exist and whose object is to war against humanity. For Satan had already been struggling in the heavens among the sons of God, from whom he dissented, and thus he became the devil, and they that took sides with him became his angels. We are told they numbered a third of the hosts of heaven, and whilst they fought and struggled with the Gods for the power and supremacy, they were cast out from heaven and they came here, where Satan became the prince and power of the air. What to do? To tempt and try fallen man. They wander up and down the earth for this purpose, thus man is placed in a position to be tried, combating as he has to do with all manner of influences which seek his overthrow.

While in this condition it was necessary that man should receive additional power and intelligence to en able him to combat successfully these evil influences; hence the Gospel was revealed to him. If after receiving this light and knowledge he should fall a prey to the enemy of his soul, he would become more or less subject to the rule of this evil power, and thus suffer according to the extent of his fall. But if he should contend against these powers and spirits and against every weakness his flesh might be heir to and come off victorious, he is promised celestial glory in the eternal worlds and eventually to become as a God.

What next? We find the powers of darkness beginning to prevail in the hearts of fallen man. For instance, the first two living sons, one of them killed the other and was a murderer. What a prospect; how the devil would laugh, saying, “Since Cain has slain his brother Abel, there is no son remaining but a murderer, so what becomes of your kingdom?” But God gave unto Adam another son named Seth, who represented the interests of his father and the interests of God. And in order that they should not be led down to the gates of death, Jesus was provided as a Savior, as a lamb slain from before the foundation of the earth. And hence Job said, “Deliver him from going down to the pit: I have found a ransom.” God made this provision in the beginning; he knew that man would fall and would pass through these ordeals, for known to God are all things from the commencement of the world. It is written here in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, that the planet on which he lives is a great Urim and Thummim, which reveals everything pertaining to this lower world and its inhabitants. And the holy beings who reside there can gaze upon us mortals whenever they please, looking also into the future or the past; hence they know it as it is.

But he provided a Savior, and in the early ages of time they looked forward to the coming of the Messiah, as we now look back to it. Of the multitudes on the continent of Asia who comprehended these things, we have very little knowledge, the accounts of what transpired among them are very meager. On this continent they spoke very plainly about the Gospel and the coming of the Redeemer, and although very plain are quite limited. Then a great many plain and precious parts have been taken away from these Scriptures.

Do you think the Jews today would want to publish things pertaining to Jesus, describing the manner in which he would come? I should think not. In a conversation I once had with Baron Rothschild he asked me if I believed in the Christ? I answered him, “Yes, God has revealed to us that he is the true Messiah, and we believe in him.” I further remarked, “Your Prophets have said, ‘They shall look upon him whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn. And one shall say unto him, What are these wounds in thy hands? Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends.’” Do you think the Jewish Rabbis would refer you to such scripture as that? Said Mr. Rothschild, “Is that in our Bible?” “That is in your Bible, sir.”

The Book of Mormon and the Bible refer to many other similar passages referring to the same event, as well as passages referring to the Savior’s birth. “Behold,” says Isaiah, “a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.” Again the Savior says, “Abraham saw my day and was glad.” Ancient people of God, in whose hearts was enkindled the flame of inspiration, looked forward to that memorable event when the Lamb slain from before the foundation of the world would offer himself as a sacrifice, whilst we look back to the same thing. We break bread and eat, and we drink water in the presence of each other every Sabbath day, and we do it in remembrance of the broken body and shed blood of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ; and this we will continue to do until he comes again. When he does come, the Latter-day Saints expect to be among that favored number that will eat and drink with him at his own table in our Father’s kingdom. I expect this just as much as I expect to eat my supper tonight.

There is something truly grand in the reflection of the Savior’s return to the earth, and man and his fall and redemption. We read of certain men that lived at various times, who, by virtue of the Priesthood they held, identified themselves with the cause of God, and interested themselves in the redemption of the world. The Priesthood they had is everlasting, it administers in time and eternity; and the men who held it live forever, and they continue to operate in their several positions and Priesthoods. Just as the angel who appeared to John on the island of Patmos. The Apostle fell at the feet of this heavenly messenger to worship him. But the angel said unto him, “See thou do it not; I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God.” And as Moses and Elias who appeared to Jesus and to Peter, James and John on the Mount; and as Moroni, John the Baptist, Peter, James and John and others appeared to Joseph Smith.

In speaking with the Prophet Joseph once on this subject, he traced it from the first down to the last, until he got to the Ancient of Days. He wished me to write something for him on this subject, but I found it a very difficult thing to do. He had to correct me several times. We are told that the “judgment shall sit and the books be opened.” He spoke of the various dispensations and of those holding the keys thereof, and said there would then be a general giving up or accounting for. I wrote that each one holding the keys of the several dispensations would deliver them up to his predecessor, from one to another, until the whole kingdom should be delivered up to the Father, and then God would be “all in all.” Said he, “That is not right.” I wrote it again, and again he said it was not right. It is very difficult to find language suitable to convey the meaning of spiritual things. The idea was that they should deliver up or give an account of their administrations, in their several dispensations, but that they would all retain their several positions and Priesthood. The Bible and Doctrine and Covenants speaks about certain books which should be opened; and another book would be opened, called the Book of Life, and out of the things written in these books would men be judged at the last day.

To continue. We find Satan getting great power. Enoch there appears, who is commissioned to go forth and preach the Gospel, as we are doing in this our age. He succeeded in converting people, and they gathered together and built up a city, and they were three hundred and sixty-five years in becoming fully established in the truth. By the time we shall have had a little more experience we perhaps shall have become a little more prudent, realizing the position we occupy to the authority of the Priesthood and power of God, and our dependence upon Jehovah, realizing too our own failings and weaknesses, and learning to lean upon God and go forth as his servants in his holy fear, and developing within us those nobler attributes that exalt man to the presence and image of his Creator. This the Gospel will do for us if we will only let it. It will bring us into communication with God, and through it we shall know and understand him and his laws, and the principles of eternal truth.

What next? God had to destroy the world. People then were like the corrupt of our age; they are crumbling to pieces, and they will continue to decay, for the seeds of dissolution are rooted in them, and they in their present condition can no more be united than you can make a rope out of sand—the materials are not cohesive and this nation will go down. Not only our nation but other nations will crumble. Thrones will be cast down and empires will be no more. The whole earth will be shaken and men’s hearts will fail them, in consequence of the things that are coming upon the earth. Why? Because of all their sins and iniquities, and further because they reject God in rejecting the Gospel of the Son of God, which is being preached among them, loving darkness rather than light.

Did God punish the people anciently who thus rejected him and his servants? Yes, he cut them off from the face of the earth, and planted another seed. Why? Because it was just and proper and right that he should do so. What, just to destroy a whole people? Certainly, it was the very best thing that he could do for them. If I were going at it, I do not know that I could do things any better. What, kill so many millions of people? Yes. How do you make this out? If I were one of those spirits—and I expect I was there, and perhaps we had a hand in it for aught I know—if, I say, I were one of those spirits in the eternal world and saw the corruptions of their hearts when the Gospel had been preached to them, and the spirit of God was withdrawn from them, and they left to themselves to indulge their wicked desires and acts, preparing themselves for perdition and teaching their children iniquity, I should have felt like saying, “O Lord, have we got to go to the earth and receive bodies through such corrupt men? Is it right and just that we should endure the evils that they would entail on us in consequence of their sinful acts with which we have had nothing to do?” “No,” says the Lord, “I will cut them off and raise up a better seed.” He did so, and by doing so he prevented these wicked people from propagating their species. They were all cast into prison, where they remained until the Savior appeared among them, after His crucifixion. He opened their prison doors and preached to them the same Gospel that they had rejected and which the Jews rejected. If these spirits in prison receive the glad tidings of great joy and live accordingly, they will, as we are informed by the Lord in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants inherit a terrestrial glory, because they were found not worthy of propagating their species, they were not worthy to become fathers and mothers of lives.

The Lord then commenced the race again with Noah, but according to the history we have of his family, the Lord had to bear a great deal with them. There was nothing very remarkable about them, they got into trouble often enough, and the prospect even then, judging after the manner of men, was not very flattering for poor humanity.

Since then there has been a continual struggle between the powers of darkness and the power of God for the mastery. In the days of Peleg the Lord divided the earth, hence the eastern and western hemisphere, doubtless thinking by doing so he would have a better opportunity to preserve some of the human family from going down to perdition. But still the devil found ready access to the hearts of the people generally, and many became so corrupt that God had to destroy them. But before allowing his justice to overtake them, he saved unto himself certain good seed and planted it in different parts of his vineyard. He took away the ten tribes. We do not hear anything about them now, but we shall by and by. He brought the Jaredites here, and afterwards the Nephites and Lamanites, and placed others in other places.

Next comes the dispensation of the fullness of times, when God is to gather together all things in one, for the Gods have decreed, and the ancient Prophets and Apostles have witnessed to it, that in the last days these things shall be accomplished. It is for this purpose the Gospel is restored, and man placed again in communication with God, and hence we have received the Book of Mormon as one of the events which were to transpire in our day, as it is written, “The Jews shall hear the words of the Nephites, and the Nephites shall hear the words of the Jews, and the Nephites and the Jews shall hear the words of the ten tribes.” He will gather his word in one, and will gather his people in one, even all things he will gather together in one, whether they be things that are in heaven or things on the earth; and the powers and priesthood of heaven will unite with the priesthood on the earth for the accomplishment of this purpose. This accounts for our coming to this western land. We have been influenced to gather here for a purpose which is known to God, but hidden from the world. It is said, “I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion. And I will give you pastors according to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.”

What next? When the people shall have been gathered in fulfillment of this prophecy, judgments will again be visited upon the wicked, as a necessary consequence. Will such visitations really take place? Yes, I know that this part, too, of the Lord’s designs will be fulfilled, for God revealed it to me long, long ago. We need not be too anxious for the destruction of the wicked, for it will be indeed terrible when it comes, it will make every feeling man weep for sorrow over the trouble and affliction that will come.

What next? Then we commence to talk about the future, something in which we are all interested, and to which our minds are more immediately drawn on such solemn occasions as this. Says Job, “If a man die, shall he live again? All the days of my appointed time will I wait till my change come.” All these people who have lived have died, and live again; they have passed away, forgotten as a dream, or as night at the approach of the opening day. That is so in one sense, according to human ken; yet there is a reality associated with this matter, pregnant with importance to the human family. We have read here some remarks in relation to these matters, and the Gospel unfolds these things to our view. We are told that there is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body. The natural body is sown in corruption, and it is raised in incorruption, etc. We shall all pass away by and by, as these our friends have; they have gone to sleep for a little while, to rise again, and to bear their part among the sons and daughters of God in the eternal worlds, and we shall have to follow and pass through the same ordeal. “It is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power; it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body.” We, as Latter-day Saints, comprehend in part these things, as relating to the designs of God pertaining to the human family. We get a glimpse at some of them, but we only see in part, and know in part; this imperfect state of things will remain until that which is perfect shall come, when that which is in part will be done away. But it is our privilege now, through obedience to the principles of the Gospel, to be full of light and life and intelligence, and the power of God, to comprehend correct principles, to walk in the light as he is in the light, and to have fellowship with God the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ, realizing and knowing that the atoning blood of Christ cleanses from sin, and that we are his sons and daughters, and have a right to the eternal glories that God has prepared for those who love him and keep his commandments.

The Apostle Paul in answer to the question, “How are the dead raised up, and with what body do they come?” said, “Thou fool, that which thou sowest is not quickened except it die. And that which thou sowest, thou sowest not that body that shall be, but bare grain, it may chance of wheat, or some other grain.” I remember reading a remark made by Tom Payne. He said, “Thou fool, Paul, that which thou sowest is not quickened except it die not.” Both of these perhaps are true. The Savior said, “The maid is not dead, but sleepeth;” also, “He that believeth on me, though he were dead, yet shall he live. And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die.” Have these our friends gone to sleep? Yes; but when he who says, “I am the resurrection and the life,” shall speak, the bodies we now see lying lifeless and inanimate, will be quickened, bone shall come to its bone, and sinews and flesh will cover them, until the whole being will be resuscitated, and the dead, as has been said, will stand upon their feet, an exceeding great army. So all mankind, the righteous and the unrighteous, shall stand before God, having been quickened in the flesh. “As in Adam all died, so in Christ shall all be made alive.”

What, will everybody be resurrected? Yes, every living being; “but every man in his own order, Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming. Then cometh the end.” That is, the Saints shall live and reign with Christ a thousand years. One of the Apostles says, “But the rest of the dead live not again until the thousand years are expired.” But all must come forth from the grave, sometime or other, in the selfsame tabernacles that they possessed while living on the earth. It will be just as Ezekiel has described it—bone will come to its bone, and flesh and sinew will cover the skeleton, and at the Lord’s bidding breath will enter the body, and we shall appear, many of us, a marvel to ourselves.

I heard Joseph Smith say, at the time he was making a tomb at Nauvoo, that he expected, when the time came when the grave would be rent asunder, that he would arise and embrace his father and mother, and strike hands with his friends. It was his written request that when he died, some kind friends would see that he was buried near his bosom friends, so that when he and they arose in the morning of the first resurrection, he could embrace them, saying, “My father! My mother,” etc.

How consoling it is to those who are called upon to mourn the loss of dear friends in death, to know that we will again be associated with them! How encouraging to all who live according to the revealed principles of truth, perhaps more especially to those whose lives are pretty well spent, who have borne the heat and burden of the day, to know that ere long we shall burst the barriers of the tomb, and come forth living and immortal souls, to enjoy the society of our tried and trusted friends, no more to be afflicted with the seeds of death, and to finish the work the Father has given us to do!

I know that some people of very limited comprehension will say that all the parts of body cannot be brought together, for, say they, the fish probably have eaten them up, or the whole may have been blown to the four winds of heaven, etc. It is true the body, or the organization, may be destroyed in various ways, but it is not true that the particles out of which it was created can be destroyed. They are eternal; they never were created. This is not only a principle associated with our religion, or in other words, with the great science of life, but it is in accordance with acknowledged science. You may take, for instance, a handful of fine gold, and scatter it in the street among the dust; again, gather together the materials among which you have thrown the gold, and you can separate one from the other so thoroughly, that your handful of gold can be returned to you; yes, every grain of it. You may take particles of silver, iron, copper, lead, etc., and mix them together with any other ingredients, and there are certain principles connected with them by which these different materials can be eliminated, every particle cleaving to that of its own element.

Our text says, “All flesh is not the same flesh: but there is one kind of flesh of men, another of beasts, another of fishes, and another of birds.” As the gold and the silver and other minerals can be mixed together and again separated, so the different kinds or particles of flesh may be united, one going into the other through natural processes, but the same God by whose wisdom the laws were made which so govern the mineral bodies, separating them one from another, has also framed and made laws by which the various particles of the different kinds of flesh can be separated, each returning and cleaving to its respective element. The component parts of man can no more become the flesh of beasts or fishes than gold can become silver, lead turn to iron, or copper to gold. Each is separate and distinct from the other.

These things are strictly scriptural, they are strictly scientific and philosophical, and are in accordance with the laws God has revealed to us, and who can refute them?

What about our deceased friends? Our kingdom and Priesthood are organized according to the order God has given us, and we expect, every one of us, to stand in our proper place in the eternal worlds, according to the order of the Priesthood which we represent.

We then come to the sealing power. Here, say, is a man and woman who have been sealed together for time and eternity. Does it mean anything? If it means anything, which it certainly does, it means just what it says. If the husband of this our departed sister continues faithful to the end, maintains his integrity to God, and fights the good fight of faith, he will claim her in eternity, and they twain will be one flesh. This young man, someone will have to act for him over the marriage altar in having someone sealed to him. He and his wife, through their faithfulness, will by and by become the father and mother of lives, and in this way the eternal purposes of God will be consummated, and his work be perpetuated.

The first command of Jehovah was for man to multiply and replenish the earth. Now the command is to build Temples. For what purpose? That they over whom Satan has had power may be administered for, reaching back, back to the beginning of time, that they may be brought forth and inherit the blessings and privileges of the kingdom of God, and that we, ourselves, may be prepared to live and reign with him forever. Let us continue to live in humility and meekness before God, seeking in faith and good works to get an increased portion of His Holy Spirit, that we may comprehend the laws of God and live according to the principles of eternal truth.

I would say to the friends of the departed dead, be comforted, all is right, all is well, and all will continue to be well with us, if we will only fear God and keep his commandments. It is far better to die in the fear of God, than to live without God. When I see people die who are prepared, having a claim on eternal life, do I feel sorry? No, I do not. I would a thousand times rather have my children to be laid in the silent tomb, as thousands of our youth are, than I would see them depart from God and his ways. My earnest desire is that I and my children may live to serve God, and that he will take us hence before we should be permitted to violate his commands or forsake his law. Let me live the life of righteousness and may my last days be spent in doing good to my fellow man and honor to my God.

May the Lord bless and sustain these our friends who are called upon to mourn for a short season, and may the Lord bless the Saints in Zion, and his servant Brigham, and those who stand shoulder to shoulder with him, and all good men, now and forever, is my prayer in the name of Jesus, Amen.