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Messenger and Advocate/3/8
|← Number 7|| Messenger and Advocate
Volume 3, Number 8
|Source document in Mormon Publications: 19th and 20th Centuries online archive: Messenger and Advocate Vol. 3
Note: Some headings and bracketed texts are editorial and not part of the original text.
|LATTER DAY SAINTS'|
|MESSENGER AND ADVOCATE|
|Volume III. No. 8.]||KIRTLAND, OHIO, MAY, 1837.||[Whole No. 32.|
"I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ, unto another gospel which is not another: but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ; but though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you, than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before so say I now again, if any man preach any other gospel unto you, than that ye have received, let him be accursed." GALLATIANS 1:6,9
This subject, rightly considered and duly weighed, is one of great importance, and concerns every individual upon the face of the whole earth, that has come to years of understanding and reflection; for that gospel that is here spoken of, is that, which if rightly understood, adhered to, and lived up to, will prove a savior of life unto life, even the everlasting immortal soul's salvation, to all those who live according to that gospel. And it is highly important and obligatory upon us, that we know and understand what this gospel, which Paul cautioned his Gallatian brethren about not receiving any other gospel was, and now is; for in the above passage of scripture we are positively, explicitly, and definitely told, that there is no other gospel. I marvel, says the author of these words, that ye are so soon removed to another gospel, which is not another gospel.
The gospel is the same now, that it was when Christ and his apostles preached it; we will now go back and see what it was then: we will take Paul's definition of it, which may be found in Romans 1:16. "For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth, to the Jew first and also to the Greek." Why did Paul say he was not ashamed of the gospel of Christ? Because it (the gospel) is the power of God unto salvation, to every one that believeth: It may be that some have imbibed an idea that the bible is the gospel, but let us weigh this idea, and see whether it will bear its own weight; we will suppose that the wickedest person there is upon the earth, has a bible and believes it, yet he does not practice one single good principle that is there laid down: has that person got the gospel? If he has, he has got the power of God unto salvation, and will of course, be saved; if no other way, he will save himself, if the bible itself is the gospel. Therefore we see that the bible itself cannot be the gospel: the bible is the word of God, and contains many rules and principles that may teach us how we may be initiated into the gospel, or how we may be adopted into the family of God; but we will bear in mind, that nothing short of what is the power of God unto salvation, unto all them that believe, is the gospel. Let us also see if the gospel had not revelation attached to it; and in the first place, let us see what the meaning of the word revelation is. All words derived from a word which signifies to do something, ending in tion, signify the act of doing that thing, from which the word is derived, and as revelation is derived from reveal, which signifies to make known, so revelation means the act of making known. Having thus explained the meaning of the word revelation let us turn to the 15th chap. of the 1st Cor. and read, commencing at the 3d ver. "For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures, and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures, and that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve; after that he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep; after that he was seen of James, then of all the apostles, and last of all he was seen of me also as one born out of due time." How, did not Cephas, the twelve, the five hundred brethren, and Paul have a revelation that Christ had risen from the dead? Surely they had. "I delivered unto you, first of all that which I also received," viz: a revelation, that Christ was risen from death unto life. See this ancient apostle, the chosen vessel to bear the gospel unto the Gentiles, before he was converted, with letters and authority in his pocket, to bind and cast into prison all who believed in this gospel; see him on his
way to Damascus, for that intent! and all at once see a light brighter than the sun at noon day shine around, and hear the voice saying to him: "Saul, Saul! why persecutest thou me?" See him confounded and pricked to his heart, fallen to the ground; and hear him exclaiming, "who art thou, Lord?" Listen to the answer-"I am Jesus, whom thou persecutest!" Judge ye, whether this was a revelation or no, and judge ye whether this was not what he had reference to when he said, "I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received."
Again, at another time, when Jesus came into the coast of Cesarea Phillippi, he took occasion to ask his disciples what the multitude said about him, he asked, saying, Math. 16:13-18-"Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?" And they said, "Some say that thou art John the baptist; some Elias; others Jeremias, or one of the prophets." He saith unto them, "But whom say ye, thst [that] I am?" Simon Peter answered and said, "thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God."-Jesus answered and said unto him, "Blessed art thou Simon Barjona, for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven, and I say also unto thee that thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it."
Let us here inquire what it was that Christ said he would build his church upon, and the gates of hell should not prevail against it. "Blessed art thou Peter." Why did Christ say, blessed art thou Peter? because my Father which is in heaven hath revealed this thing unto thee. A revelation from heaven to Peter, and this is the thing that Christ said he would build his church upon and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it: the rock of revelation, the sure foundation; and not as some have supposed, or essayed to show, that the church was to be built upon Peter. Now inasmuch as the gospel church was founded upon the rock of revelation, let us see if the gospel is the same now that it was anciently; if the Lord God was as much of a changeable being as we are, we might well inquire if the gospel is the same now that it was in the days of the apostles; but he is unchangeable, and consequently his gospel is unchangeable. See Malachi III:6, "For I am the Lord, I change not, therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed."-Heb. VIII:8, "Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, to-day and forever." And also James 1:17, "Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness nor shadow of turning." Shall we say the gospel is changed now from what it was anciently? No, verily no; for we have an abundance of testimony to the contrary, and "by the mouth of two witnesses, or at the mouth of three witnesses shall the matter be established." We have cited 3 unimpeachable witnesses, all of which testify to the unchangeableness of the Lord God, and their testimony agrees one with another; therefore we take it for granted that he is unchangeable, and no man can gainsay it; and we know that if God is unchangeable, his gospel, or scheme, whereby he saves souls in the kingdom of heaven, must be unchangeable.
Now let us see what the apostles preached, for the words are, "though we, (in the plural number) or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached, or than that ye have received, let him be accursed." We shall find, by a careful examination of the word of God, that they preached, first, faith in the Lord Jesus Christ; second, repentance, or a sorrow for, and a forsaking of sin; third, baptism, or an immersion in the water; fourth, remission of sin, that they may be pure in heart; and fifth, the laying on of hands for the reception of the Holy Ghost, five steps or principles, in their regular order, are indispensably necessary in order to be initiated into the gospel or into the kingdom of heaven, or to be adopted into the family of God, and made an heir and a joint heir with Jesus Christ: faith, repentance, baptism, remission of sin, and the laying on of hands for the reception of the Holy Ghost.-"Now to the law and to the testimony:" if we have not declared according to their teaching, it is because there is no light in us. In the 8th chapter of the acts of the apostles, we have a little story that gives us a clue to know that they taught the principles of faith. "Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture & preached-
ed unto him (the Eunuch) Jesus;" and doubtless he explained these five principles unto him, for "as they went on their way they came unto a certain water, and the Eunuch said, "see, here is water, what doth hinder me to be baptized?" Mark the answer-and Philip said, "if thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest:" and he answered and said, "I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God." After he had thus declared his faith, "they went down both into the water, both Philip and the Eunuch, and he baptized him." Here we find that Philip taught and required faith, before he would baptize for the remission of sins; and we find that when Christ gave his apostles his last and important commission, he said to them, "he that believeth and is baptized shall be saved, but he that believeth not shall be damned:" Mark XVI:16; here the Savior taught also that faith was necessary before baptism. After a person has faith, there is still another step or principle before baptism, and that is repentance.
In the 2d chapter of the acts of the apostles, we find that on the day of pentacost [Pentecost] when the disciples of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, were all assembled together in one place, the spirit of God was poured out upon them in copiousness, and they were filled with the Holy Ghost, and spoke in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance, insomuch [inasmuch] that it was noised abroad, and the multitude (there being a great concourse of people assembled at Jerusalem) came to the place where the disciples were, and when they heard them speak in their own tongue, they were convicted and pricked in their hearts, on account of their sins being made manifest unto them; and they with one accord, said unto Peter and the rest of the apostles, men and brethren what shall we do, seeing we have crucified the Lord? Observe the answer: Then Peter said unto them, repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ, for the remission of your sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost; for the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call. Repent, says Peter, repent and then be baptized, and not be baptized and then repent; but repent first, for this is according to the order of the gospel. And after a person has faith, or believes in the atonement made by Jesus Christ the Son of God, and has repented of sin with a godly sorrow, then that person is a fit subject to go down into the water and be buried in the liquid grave for the remission of sin, and he is not only a fit subject, but it is an indispensable duty that he should, if he would enter into the kingdom of heaven, for Christ said to Nicodemus, "Verily, verily, I say unto thee, except a man be born of water and of the spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of heaven." John III:5. How can a man be born of water unless he is first in the water, that he may be brought forth out of the water? I cannot answer this question otherwise than to say, as our Savior said, except a man be born of water and of the spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of heaven.
Having thus briefly touched upon the three first principles of the gospel, we will pass to the fourth principle, which is the remission of sin. After the Savior had risen from the dead, he appeared unto his disciples and expounded the scriptures unto them. Luke XXIV: 45,47: "Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures, and said unto them, thus it is written, and thus it behoved [behooved] Christ to suffer and to rise from the dead the third day; and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name, among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem."-And who shall say he did not teach his disciples aright? "Shall little haughty ignorance pronounce his works unwise, of which the smallest part exceeds the narrow visions of her mind?" No. Then we say he taught his disciples to preach repentance and remission of sins in his name; and St. John, in his gospel, XX:21,23, speaking of the same transaction, says, "Then said Jesus unto them again, peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you. And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, receive ye the Holy Ghost: Whosesoever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them, and whosoever sins ye retain, they are retained." Nothing can be clearer than that Christ taught his disciples to preach repentance and remission of sins in his name, for none but the pure
in heart have any promise of ever seeing God; and no person can be pure in heart, except their sins are forgiven or remitted unto them.
We will now pass to the fifth principle: the laying on of hands for the reception of the Holy Ghost; this being a principle that the priests and teachers of the protestant churches have not been much accustomed to teach their hearers any thing about; and so much the better, for error has to be unlearned before that which is right can be learned; that is, if an honest hearted person, who has been taught wrong principles, wishes to learn right or correct principles, that person has a greater task to do, than one who has never imbibed an incorrect principle or idea.
We will now turn and read a part of the 19th chapter of the Acts. "And it came to pass that while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul having passed through the upper coast, came to Ephesus, and finding certain disciples, he said unto them, have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, we have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost.-And he said unto them, unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, unto John's baptism." Unto John's baptism, and have not heard whether there be any Holy Ghost! John did not baptize you then? O no, John himself did not baptize us; but we were baptized by John's disciples, unto John's baptism. Ah! says Paul, I knew that John did not baptize you, for "John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people that they should believe on him which should come after him; that is, on Christ Jesus. And when they heard this, they were baptized (unto the Lord's baptism) in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost." You see that they had now heard something about the Holy Ghost; "and when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues and prophesied." And now if any more testimony is wanted to prove that the apostle taught the principle of laying on of hands for the reception of the Holy Ghost, we will again refer to the 8th chapter of the Acts, commencing at the 14th verse: "Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem, heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John; who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost; for as yet he had fallen upon none of them; only they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost."
Here it was self evident that the Holy Ghost came upon the disciples in consequence of the apostles laying their hands upon them; and it was plain to be seen that Simon the sorcerer, saw that they had power to give the Holy Ghost by the laying on of their hands, and he offered them money to confer that power upon him. But they taught him that the gift and power of God was not to be bought with money. And Paul in an exhortation to his weak Hebrew brethren, who he thought had not made so great progress in the gospel as they ought, says to them, "For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again, which be the first principles of the oracles of God." He exhorted them to leave the first "principles of the doctrine of Christ, and go on to perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance." And he goes on to enumerate some of the first principles, such as repentance, the doctrine of baptism, and the laying on of hands, &c. Now if this point is not clearly made out, that the apostles taught the doctrine or principle of laying on hands for the reception of the Holy Ghost, it would not be made out, if a heavenly host of angels should declare it; for we have adduced testimony enough to convince any person who will be convinced, of this point, and yet there is more testimony, but enough is as good as a feast.
Brethren, it may be you will say you knew all this before. I would say, it is not the primary object of this article to teach you, for I am yet young in the kingdom of heaven; it is not yet six months since I was born of the water. However, I am strong in the faith, and would compare what the apostles taught with what the protestant priests and teachers at the present day teach; therefore you will please let your protestant neighbors read this article, and ask them to compare it with the bible; tell them that truth is an eternal principle, and will remain so, even if every man upon the face of the whole earth should try to gainsay it.
Where do we find the preacher among the protestant churches who preaches or teaches the gospel as the apostles taught it? Where is the man among them who believes in present divine revelation? O, say they, no more revelation: we have the bible, and we do not want any more revelation; we have got what God revealed to his prophets and apostles, and we do not want any more revelation. Are you sure you have got all that God ever revealed to his prophets and apostles? If you are, I am quite as sure you have not got a hundredth part of what was revealed to them, for we read in the last verse of John's gospel, "And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written;" that is, if every thing should be written that Christ did, a man in his natural life in this world, could not read and contain them; and it may be, that what we have, has been robbed of much of its intrinsic value. Yet we bless God that it yet contains many land and way marks, as it were, to point us to the haven of rest, the eternal realms of bliss, even to the abode of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and our God. And we also rejoice, that it was said in olden time, that God hath given his prophets "precept upon precept, precept upon precept, line upon line, line upon line, here a little and there a little," knowing that God is an unchangeable being. We find in the 28th chapter of Isaiah, the question asked, "Whom shall he teach knowledge, and whom shall he make to understand doctrine?" to "them that are weaned from milk, and drawn from the breast, for precept must be upon precept, line upon line, here a little and there a little." For what reason shall we not now have precept upon precept, line upon line, as well as in the days of the prophets?-The only reason that can be assigned, is unbelief. We will now give Butterworth's definition of unbelief: He says it "is a want of credit of, and a want of confidence in the word and truth of God, arising, not from a want of evidence of divine truth, but from a rooted enmity of the heart against it, and is a criminal disobedience." Unbelief being the only reason that can be given, why we shall not have revelation now, and precept upon precept, line upon line, here a little and there a little, as well as in the days of the ancient prophets; let us see if this is a good reason, or a valid objection. See Romans, III:3-4: "For what if some did not believe? Shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect? God forbid: yea let God be true, but every man a liar, as it is written, that thou mightest be justified in thy sayings, and mightest overcome when thou art judged."
Where is the man among the protestant churches, who teaches these five principles in their regular order to his proselytes? I must confess I have not been acquainted with the man among them who has taught these principles in their regular order: I must admit that they hold to some of these principles, some one way and some another; but suppose we were going into a harvest field to labor, and should in the first place begin by threshing the wheat, then reaping it and then binding up the straw to gather into the garner? Would that be the right way to harvest a crop? Would it be more absurd than to baptize for the remission of sins, and then repent afterwards? Or suppose a person should go to work the right way in a harvest field, and should go so far as to get his wheat cut and bound up, and should never do any thing more, would his wheat do him any good? Would not his wheat do him about as much good, as a man's religion, who has obeyed a part of the principles of the gospel; and never done any thing more for his soul's salvation? Why not place ourselves in the attitude that we may claim the promise that Peter made? "And ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost, for the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call." Is it asked what use would the Holy Ghost be to us? the answer may be found in the 14th chapter of John's gospel, at the 26th ver: "But the comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance whatsoever I have said unto you." And as Christ said, "peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you:" and would say, all unforseen [unforeseen] casualties ex-
cepted, you may expect to hear from the gospel again by my pen.
(Continued from April No.-page 486.) While we proceed down the stream of time from our father Abraham, who was such an illustrious pattern of piety, whose brilliant light shone so conspicuous upon the generation in which he lived, and is transmitted down through succeeding generations to us, without losing its benign influence; and in all probability will be perpetuated from generation to generation, so long as time shall endure; his virtues imitated, his holiness admired and diligently sought after by all the faithful-as we pass along we find thrown into the current, many patriarchs, prophets and saints, who, if not the literal descendants of Abraham, were made such by partaking of the like precious faith with him. We find a Jacob wrestling with an angel of God at Peniel all night; and when the day began to dawn in the east, this holy messenger said unto Jacob, let me go, for the day breaketh. He replied, I will not let thee go, except thou bless me. And he said, thy name shall no more be called Jacob, but Israel; for as a prince thou hast power with God and with men, and hast prevailed. Have we not in this man, an example of unabating zeal and untiring perseverance? Verily we have. And though he halted the remainder of his days, the promises of God unto Abraham and his seed were verified and confirmed upon his head. The testimony of his progenitors was not sufficient for him, he followed their example, sought for and obtained for himself a revelation of the secret acts and future designs of the Almighty, that his seed should be as the sand of the sea, or the stars of heaven which cannot be numbered for multitude. Among the twelve patriarchs that proceeded from his loins, was Joseph, on whom Israel had placed his affections more particularly, because he was the son of his old age. On account of this, his brethren cordially hated him and would not speak peaceably unto him. His dreams and visions from God, which indicated and plainly foretold his future greatness, only served to augment the indignation of his brethren, and they sought his overthrow. But Israel pondered the sayings of his beloved son in his heart.
While he was wandering in the field in search of his brethren, who were watching their flocks and herds, he came to Shechem and from thence he proceeded to Dothan, and when they saw him afar off, they conspired against him to destroy him. He was cast into a pit, taken out and sold to the wandering son of Ishmael whose hand, the Lord had said, should be against every man. He was carried into Egypt, sold to a wicked prince, his coat of many colors dipped in the blood of a kid, and returned to his afflicted father, who supposed that an evil beast had rent him in pieces and devoured him. But how unavailing are the attempts of the workers of iniquity to thwart the designs of the God of Israel? These wicked and unnatural transactions were all overruled by Him who comprehends the end from the beginning, to bring about and fulfill his great and eternal purposes, that his covenants and promises to his servants, might be effectually demonstrated. By this means Israel was preserved from falling a prey to the famine that pervaded the land-by this means the word of God to Abraham was fulfilled: "Thou shalt sojourn in Egypt four hundred years." Another man was raised up to lead him out in the own due time of the Lord. Sore plagues were executed upon that people by this messenger to whom God had revealed the secret, that the time had arrived for Israel to spoil the Egyptians and depart from the yoke of bondage under which they had so long groaned. He called him from Horeb, where he was feeding the flocks of his father-in-law, Jethro, under whose hands he had received the priesthood of Melchisedec [Melchizedek]; by which he had power with God, and was enabled to come up into his presence. Under this authority he went forth and delivered a message to Pharaoh and his court, and brought ten successive plagues upon Egypt. By this authority he assembled the camp of Israel, which consisted of six hundred thousand, and led them through the midst of the sea, while the floods were stayed on either hand.
Well might they sing unto the Lord this song, saying, "The Lord hath triumphed gloriously: the horse and his rider hath he thrown into the sea. The
Lord is a man of war. Pharaoh's chariots and his hosts hath he cast into the sea: his chosen captains also are drowned in the Red sea. The depths have covered them: they sank into the bottom as a stone. In the greatness of their excellency thou hast overthrown them that rose up against thee: thou sentest forth thy wrath which consumed them as stubble. And with the blast of thy nostrils the waters were gathered together, the floods stood upright as an heap, and the depths were congealed in the heart of the sea. Who is like unto thee, O Lord, among the gods? who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praise, doing wonders?"
Moses so perfectly understood the principles of faith, that the walls of Jericho, when encompassed round about by the armies of Israel, were razed to their foundations; the wickedness of an Achin, who had concealed the golden wedge and babylonish garment, was brought to light. When Israel murmured against Moses in the wilderness, because of their extreme hunger, and their souls lusted after the flesh pots of Egypt, this servant of the living God had power with him to bring quails into the camp, manna from heaven, and water from the flinty rock.
While thunder and lightnings shook the mount of God, and indicated his presence, he was able to enter into the cloud of his glory; while the light of it was like devouring fire on the top of the mount, in the eyes of the children of Israel, yet Moses could enter into it and converse with God himself, and obtain the tables of his law. Here the secrets of God's will were given unto Israel; the curses they had endured, and that would befall them because of their wickedness and evil hearts of unbelief; and the blessings that would be multiplied on their heads and the heads of their posterity, if they would forsake their idols, and cleave unto the living God-"And it shall come to pass when all these things are come upon thee, the blessings and the curses which I have set before thee, and thou shalt call them to mind among all the nations whither the Lord thy God hath driven thee, and shalt return unto him, and shalt obey his voice according to all that I command thee this day, thou and thy children, with all thine heart, and with all thy soul: That then the Lord thy God will turn thy captivity, and have compassion upon thee, and will return and gather thee from all the nations whither he hath scattered thee. If any of thine be driven out unto the uttermost parts of heaven, from thence will the Lord thy God gather thee, and from thence will he fetch thee: For this commandment which I command thee this day, is not hidden from thee, neither is it afar off. It is not in heaven, that thou shouldst say, who shall go up for us to heaven, and bring it unto us, that we may hear it and do it? Neither is it beyond the sea, that thou shouldst say, who shall go over the sea for us, and bring it unto us, that we may hear it and do it? I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life that both thou and thy seed may live."
We behold also an Elijah, who lived in what is denominated by this wise generation of religionists, an age of darkness, (would to God that the professed disciples of the Lord Jesus in this age, were overwhelmed in the like darkness, me thinks they would be more like their Maker,) having such confidence in God, that he stood forth in the presence of Israel, and the numerous prophets of Baal, who surrounded him, and declared that there should not be dew nor rain those years but according to his word. He was the only surviving prophet of the Lord, that remained. But in his hand he preserved him and led him out into the wilderness and hid him by the brook Cherith, and gave commandments and revelations to the ravens of the valley to feed him; accordingly they brought him bread and flesh in the morning, and bread and flesh in the evening: and he drank of the waters of the brook. But at length the brook dried up, and the Lord had occasion to reveal another secret to him; viz. that a certain widow would sustain him, whom he found gathering two sticks to kindle a fire to dress the last remains of her barrel of meal, and cruse of oil; which failed not nor diminished, while this prophet shared her humble pittance. But this was not her only reward-her son who had slumbered in death, was restored to life again. He came forth filled with indignation at the wickedness of the prophets of baal, and tested the validity of their religion and their gods,
with that of the God of Israel. Tho' their prayers were long and loud from the morning until the time of the evening sacrifice, the offering was not consumed. But when Elijah put up his petition, fire from heaven not only consumed the sacrifice, wood and stones of the altar, but licked up the water in the trench round about. While the famine was yet sore in the land, because there was no rain, he got himself up to the top of mount Carmel, and prostrated himself upon the thirsty earth, and when his servant had looked seven times toward the sea for rain, the heavens began to be propitious; a little cloud like a man's hand rose out of the sea. And while Ahab prepared his chariots to get himself down that the rain stop him not, the hand of the Lord was upon Elijah, & he girded up his loins, and flew as it were upon the wings of the wind, and outstripped the chariots of Ahab, and went before him to the entrance of Jezreel.
Is this a religion of dark types and shadows which the ancient saints enjoyed, that enabled them to enter within the veil and fathom the secrets and deep designs which lay in the bosom of the Almighty? Is this religion which conferred such special favors upon Jacob, David, Samuel, Joshua, Job, Ezekiel, Isaiah, Jeremiah, and many others, inaccessible by us, and yet God remain an unchangeable being? Did they enjoy more holiness than was indispensably necessary to save them in the kingdom of God? If so, the fact is yet to be revealed, for it is not so written in the volume of God's inspiration. Is it not rather a day of darkness and unbelief? Is there not a fearful odds between the religion of this generation and that of the ancients?-Yes, verily the darkness of Egypt, when compared with the moral darkness that now pervades the religious world, would be meridian sunshine.
O ye self-righteous, unbelieving generation of vipers and hypocrites, who have perverted the right ways of the Lord, how can you escape the damnation of hell? How long will ye resist the Holy Ghost, and treat lightly the revelations of Jesus Christ? How long will you cry peace, peace, when sudden destruction cometh like a whirlwind and will fall like a storm upon the fearful and unbelieving? Your faith will not compare with that of the dumb ass who rebuked the madness of the prophet, or the raven of the valley who fed the servant of the Lord in the wilderness.
(TO BE CONTINUED.)
ANCIENT HISTORY. No. 4.
This country being indebted for the first rudiments of the arts and sciences, and the dawnings of civilization, if we may so speak, to the Phœnicians and Egyptians, its history is properly introduced after, and connected with, the history of those nations. The ancient inhabitants of this country were barbarous, but a dawning of civilization arose under the Titans, a Phœnician or Egyptian colony, who were cotemporary with Moses. The Titans gave the Greeks the first ideas of religion, and introduced the worship of their own gods, Saturn, Jupiter, Ceres, &c. among them.
Inachus, the last of the Titans, founded Argos 1856 before Christ.-There was not that steady march of mind, that improvement from the commencement, in the arts and sciences, that under other, and more propitious circumstances we might have looked for. In the following century happened the deluge of Ogyges 1796 before Christ. Then followed a period of barbarism of more than two hundred years.
Cecrops, the leader of another colony from Egypt, landed in Attica 1582 before Christ, and connecting himself with the last king, succeeded, on his death, to the sovereignty. He built a number of cities, and was eminent as a lawgiver and a politician. He introduced the court of Areopagus at Athens. The number of the judges of said court varied at different periods from 9 to 51.
Amphyction was the founder of the celebrated council called the amphyctionic council. This man, no doubt, had extensive views of policy and government. This council, from a league of twelve cities, became a representative assembly of the states of Greece, and had a most admirable effect in uniting the nation and giving it a common interest.
Cadmus, about 1519 years before Christ, introduced alphabetic writing into Greece from Phœnicia. The alphabet had then only sixteen letters;
and the method of writing was from right to left and from left to right alternately. From this period the Greeks made rapid advances in civilization. It may be a matter of astonishment to many that the progress of civilization was not more rapid, but when we consider the low state of barbarism from which they emerged, their imperfect knowledge of letters, together with their rude and superstitious notions of religion, we cannot wonder. Where the light of revelation has never been reflected upon the human mind, all notions of the Deity or of religion, must necessarily be vague and imperfect; consequently the laws, customs and usage of the people are more or less barbarous. Time would fail us to adduce all the reasons of the slow progress of civilization among the Greeks, and the full bearing each had in retarding its progress; but suffice it to say, that the same causes have produced similar effects in all places.
(TO BE CONTINUED.)
MESSENGER AND ADVOCATE.
W. A. COWDERY, EDITOR.
KIRTLAND, OHIO, MAY, 1837.
We, some few months since, had occasion to remark that the parable of the Savior concerning the net that was cast into the sea and gathered of every kind, was never more fully verified than in the gathering of the church in Kirtland. From a careful observation since we penned that article, we can truly say that the every day occurrences have tended to corroborate the assertion, rather than convince us that we were then mistaken.
Our elders go out and preach the gospel to all, convincing and persuading them to embrace the truth; some believe and embrace it, and others reject it. The object of those who embrace the gospel, is to sell their possessions where they are, and come to this place or join our brethren in the "Far West." Some come here with hearts filled with love and good will to their brethren and a truly laudable zeal for the cause of our Redeemer, willing to hearken to their brethren and impart of their substance, where God requires it for the advancement of his cause and the glory of his kingdom. Indeed, no sacrifice appears too great for them to make, that can in righteousness be re-required. Others appear to come with far different views and motives, apparently to live on the labor or alms of their friends or brethren, and complain if they do not receive a support. They appear to have forgotten that it has been said that the idler shall not eat the bread nor wear the clothing of the laborer.
They disobey or disregard the revelations and all words of wisdom which the Lord has given for the benefit of his saints; they join affinity with the adversary, strike hands with the world, sigh for the flesh pots of Egypt, and finally fall away and become apostates.
There is still another class, who are honest, confiding, unsuspecting souls, who yield to the entreaties and persuasions of the idle and avaricious, who, reckless of all consequences, are ready to make any promises, however inconsistent with truth or reason, to obtain all the money they have. Why do they give up their all in this way? Is it because they are insane and have lost their reason? Certainly not; but they have come here to live with their brethren, members of the same church, who have suffered persecution as well as they. Here also are the heads of the church, the church of God, led by revelation given for the government and guidance of the saints at the present day and age, not for ancient ages; and in addition to all these, the prophet and first elders of the church reside here, and they will not uphold lying and deceiving; therefore, say they, we will confide in our brethren, they cannot, they will not deceive us.
Thus, it is easy to see that such a course of conduct must inevitably bring ruin and distress upon the individuals concerned. Not only so, but more or less, mar the peace of community. A system of fraud or deception to obtain their money and rob them of their means of subsistence, leads them to doubt, to complain, to grieve, and frequently to apostatize and turn away from the faith.
Under these circumstances what is to be done? We will suggest a remedy for the consideration of our brethren abroad. When you arrive here, if you have confidential friends in whom you can repose confidence relative to temporal matters, ask their advice about a location and the price, &c. Confer also with the Bishop, whose of-
fice it is to administer to the poor, and if you have money or other property to bestow for their relief or building up the cause of God, put it into his hands, and the proper counsellors will see that a righteous disposition is made of it.-But we do caution you, not to be jealous or suspicious of your brethren, but to beware of such as attack you as soon as you enter this place, and begin to interrogate you about the amount of money you have, and to importune you for it, with assurances that you shall have it refunded with interest, and that the Lord shall bless you abundantly; yea, and multiply blessings upon you. Of such we say beware. They take advantage of your honest simplicity, obtain your available means, and then desert you.
If you ask for it, or a part of it, when you think your circumstances require it, you wtll [will] be likely to be put off with, perhaps, a renewal of the promise, an assurance that at some future period you shall have it: when that period arrives, you may make another application, and you will be less warmly received, and have still less assurances of obtaining any relief.
The third application you make, you may portray your own situation and that of your family, in all the colors that imagination can invent, or that truth and native eloquence can paint; tell them in soul-stirring, pathetic language, with your eyes suffused with tears, that your family are destitute of the necessary means of subsistence, that your companion and tender offspring are crying for bread; you may then be turned away with a severe rebuke, and be taxed with a want of faith, and a want of suitable exertions to obtain what you need, without troubling them. We now say to you again, beware of such. They will deceive you, ruin your worldly prospects, blast all your hopes of a living from what you once possessed, and leave you a miserable outcast, dependent on your daily labor for your daily bread, or the stinted charity of an unfriendly, ungrateful world.
Furthermore we say, if you have faith in God and his cause, have it, we truly rejoice at it; we bid you God speed; may you increase in it, and grow in grace. But if you are young men and maidens who have had neither the benefit of age or experience to teach you, we say remember your duty to God and his cause as a paramount obligation, remember the obligation you owe to yourself and your friends, and look for no divine or miraculous interposition of Providence in your behalf in your temporal pursuits.
In short, remember that the saints cannot live on wind, on sycophancy or false promises, their temporal bodies require temporal food to nourish them, in this place, as well as all others, while they dwell in the flesh. You must also remember that you have no just cause to expect, that God will sustain you here without calculation and without exertion, nor that you can lull in the lap of luxury and ease, without money or other means. You will bear in mind that you are endowed with powers and faculties of mind that are to be put in requisition for your own benefit and the benefit of the saints.
You may also remember that in calculating your temporal business, there are certain known rules, and long tried principles, which if pursued, will lead to a successful issue and leave you no cause to redress errors or mourn over your wild speculations. Those principles are to be pursued here, as well as elsewhere, and no one need expect success if he vary from them. Vain theory, idle fancy, and visionary speculation, will but end in ruin and disgrace. Such are the consequences, the inevitable consequences in other places, and such they will be here, and permit us to add, that no human power can prevent them. But for the sake of argument, we will barely admit that we may be wrong, that we have shown you the dark side of the picture, that you may pledge your faith, beyond your means, and make your thousands or tens of thousands by so doing. But hark ye: if you have made it here, have you not made it out of your poor brethren? Have they not become the sufferers thereby? or have you created so much property and no one been the loser? You can hardly say it, unless you have labored industriously at some employment, that has converted a raw material or a commodity of a less marketable value into that of a greater. If you have, this is commendable and useful, this we need, what society needs, and what we most cordially approbate. This is not injuring our neighbors, or reducing the sum total of available
means or human felicity, but enhancing both.
Causes, you know, produce effects, and like causes produce like effects in all places, and among all people, whether they be saints or sinners. Men do not gather grapes of thorns nor figs of thistles, neither can the vine bear olive berries or the grape figs. And the trees are no better known by their fruit than certain effects, known and established, follow the causes that have produced them.
Ruin, shame, misery and disgrace, follow a course of evil doing, but righteous pursuits and upright measures are crowned with success. You possibly may, by launching into an unknown sea without chart or compass, arrive safely in your desired haven. But it is a hundred to one, that you will be dashed upon rocks or quicksands and be lost. You will bear in mind that the wise man said, "the prudent man foreseeth the evil and hideth himself, but the wicked pass on and are punished." If you are successful in wild enterprises or visionary calculations, rest assured, that somebody is the poorer; and that same wise man has said, "he that maketh haste to be rich, shall not be innocent."
But to return a little to the point from where we started. The net has truly gathered of every kind, and there are some of all classes of people in this place. There are those who conduct as if there were no God, nor any hereafter; and there are those who apparently fear God, love and revere him, love their brethren and walk uprightly. The former class have assented to all the truths of the gospel, obeyed its outward ordinances, but their fruits are evincive of corrupt hearts and debased principles. Such things occurred anciently, and they may be expected in modern times. Lying and deceiving are truly sinful practices, and sin is a reproach to any person or any people, and the wise and the good will always deprecate it.
You are not to understand that we uphold evil or countenance evil doers, but here is collected a large body of people, whose customs and manners are not assimilated; and there are some jealousies, that would not exist in the small branches abroad. These, brethren, you see are to us, unavoidable.-Offences [offenses] must come, but we can say wo be to him from whom the offence [offense] cometh. We know there is a right and a wrong in human actions, and that the wicked will not go unpunished or the righteous unrewarded. God is no respecter of persons. He only that feareth him and worketh righteousness is accepted with him.
While there are those who disobey and disregard the principles of our religion, that is no proof of their falsity, or that they are not of divine origin.-If you come here to see perfection in the church and all living like saints of God; you will be disappointed, sadly disappointed. If you neglect your own duty to God, yourself, your brethren, your families, either or all, God will not hold you guiltless nor suffer you to pass smoothly down the current of time; conscious guilt and pale remorse, will gnaw like a worm the root of your felicity. One duty omitted, inevitably leads to the omission of more, and those omissions press on in rapid succession, till the once fair professor fastens upon infidelity or ends his miserable career in the vertex of ruin.
If you watch for the failings and imperfections of others, and endeavor to correct their follies and faults, let us say to you, that you have undertaken too much, even more than you can perform. Remember that by others' faults wise men correct their own, and your duties to God and your own soul, are paramount to all others. By these remarks, you are not to understand that you have nothing to do in bringing those who violate the laws of God, to condign punishment; by no means, but beware, lest in prosecuting to obtain justice, you imbibe a wrong spirit and become a persecutor.
You are doubtless aware that a medical man may have a correct knowledge of the human system, and a correct theory of medicine, but an erroneous practice may destroy his patients. So with regard to religious theory, he may have been baptized for the remission of his sins, he may have eaten and drunken in the name of the Lord Jesus, in his name prophesied, cast out devils and done many wonderful works, yet if you were to cut off his head, his soul would land in hell. Such, you know, have only head religion, while the heart is full of all manner of wickedness and abominable idolatries. They are an offence [offense] to God and his people, and as
we have before remarked, wo to them from whom offences [offenses] come. We have often thought virtue and pure religion shone more conspicuously by being contrasted with vice and hypocrisy, and the innocent and uncontaminated would see the vast disparity, choose the good and refuse the evil.
You will not conclude as rational beings, that God has not a people here of his own choice, that he loves and will eventually save in his celestial kingdom, because there are workers of iniquity amongst them, nor that he has not renewed his covenant, set up a standard to the nations and revealed himself to the children of men in this our day, because you do not see great miracles performed, or because he has not condescended to reveal himself to you, or speak to you with an audible voice. In the days of the Savior it was said by pretty good authority, that there had not arisen a greater than John the baptist, and yet he did no miracles. So we see by a recurrence to scripture testimony, that the absence of miracles is no infallible evidence of imposture. By the same authority also we are warranted in the conclusion that prophecying [prophesying] and doing many wonderful works in the name of the Lord, not only will not of themselves, ensure them a seat in the celestial kingdom, but will not prove that the Lord has ever spoken to them or revealed his will to the children of men, through them. In short, God's ways are higher than our ways, and his thoughts than our thoughts. Doing miracles did not convince the unbelieving Jews that Jesus was the true Messiah, neither would men be convinced in our day were they to witness them any more than were the Jews. The devil asked for a sign, and was repulsed; the Pharisees asked for a sign and were reproached for their incredulity. And if the Lord himself refused to give a sign to gratify the Jews, his covenant people, do you believe he would suffer one of his servants in these days, to give a sign or work a great miracle to gratify the unbelieving Gentiles? a race of beings who believe there will be no more miracles, no more revelations? The Savior said to the Jews, you have Moses and the prophets, let them hear them, and if they will not hear them, they will not believe though one rose from the dead: So we say in these days, if you do not believe what the scriptures say concerning the signs of the times, that the Lord is to renew his covenant, set up an ensign to the nations and assemble the outcasts of Israel in the last days, when it is so plainly and positively pointed out therein, you had better act the honest part at once, deny the whole volume of revelation and play the hypocrite no longer.
It is a moral fact that discussion and investigation elicit truths that have long been buried in oblivion or tradition, and light has come into the world and been reflected upon the children of men in that brilliancy that many can see the utter fallacy of all the prevailing systems of religion. They can see that their belief is vain, their hope fallacious, their priests without authority from God, and their God never to speak to the children of men again; consequently their faith in him must be vain and worse than vain. Notwithstanding light has come into the world, men still "love darkness rather than light because their deeds are evil." Evils, we have before said, exist, and they exist among us, among the saints of God in this place, and we are sorry to say, they are multifarious and grievous to be borne [born]. Our heart is often pained within us and our feelings tried to the centre [center] on beholding the conduct, the wicked conduct of some of those who have named the name of Christ. But when we reflect that anciently many were called but few chosen, and the Savior himself likened the kingdom of heaven to a net that was cast into the sea and gathered of every kind, we console ourselves with the reflection that what was then truth is now truth, what was then proven is fully exemplified in our day, and we should not murmur on that account as if "some strange thing had happened unto us." But, brethren, iniquity in others will never justify an evil act in us, he that sinneth shall not be held guiltless, and "he that scorneth alone shall bear it." To our own master we stand or fall. The hypocrites profess to love God, but in works they deny him, being abominable, disobedient, and to every good work reprobate. They appear to be lovers of gain, lovers of filthy lucre, more than lovers of God. Justice, even handed justice, will ere long over-
take the guilty and fearfulness surprise the hypocrite.
But the saints of God, brethren, have a heart right towards him, and have a conscience void of offence [offense] towards him and towards man. They live among hypocrites and unbelievers truly, surrounded with snares & temptations; without are fightings, within are fears, aud [and] all the nameless ills that flesh is heir to; still we trust many will hold on their way and will eventually be welcomed with the pleasing plaudit, "well done good and faithful servants, enter into the joys of your Lord." And we believe the Lord the righteous Judge, will crown them his, in his celestial kingdom. They truly have to "come up through great tribulation," and when they shall have finished their probationary season, and crossed this tempestuous sea of life, can then take a retrospect on past life and say, "We have fought a good fight, we have finished our conrse [course], we have kept the faith," Lord Jesus now receive our spirits. We think "the Lord, the righteous Judge has crowns of glory laid up for all such as love his appearing." Although they have tribulation, pain an anguish here, (if they are not on account of their own sins) "they shall only make them richer there, when they arrive at home." But the abominable, the disobedient, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie, shall have their part where the worm dieth not and the fire is not quenched.
Once more we say to our brethren abroad, be not discouraged, be faithful, we have endeavored in the integrity of our heart, to deal faithfully with you, to warn you of the evils, the snares and temptations that beset and surround the saints here. We have spoken of things which we know, and testified of those which we have seen. Although we have drawn rather a gloomy picture and cast the body of the saints here, into the back ground or rather portrayed them in a sable shade, still we believe we have dealt faithfully with them, and with you, that we have "nothing exaggerated or set down aught in malice." If we had hid our own faults, and wickedly deceived you, by painting to your imagination, joys of which you would not participate when you shall arrive here, we should blush with shame when we shall behold your faces. We have been accustomed to speak the truth from our youth up, and we offer it to you, to the saints here, and to the world, with fearless honesty. We expect to give an account at the bar of God for all our thoughts, words and actions, and we rather meet the truth, and our numerous readers who shall testify that we have told it plainly, than to have our own conscience accuse us of duplicity, and the Judge of all the earth condemn us for deceiving his people. We know that truth is mighty and will prevail, and that any attempt to suppress or conceal it, will be vain and worse than vain. Saints, real saints of God who have served him with pure hearts, we hope will still continue to love & serve him, & let not the conduct of some of those who are called saints in this place, whether they be in high or low stations, stagger their faith in the pure principles of the gospel; bearing in mind at all times, that such only as endure faithful to the end, have the promise of endless felicity.
Once more, and in conclusion, we say that there is a great distress and perplexity of this nation. The Lord appears to be vexing the people, or suffering them to be vexed, for their past imprudence, their folly or their wickedness. Were we penning a common newspaper article, we would point you to some of the physical causes, but we are not; therefore, we forbear; suffice it to say for our purpose, that trouble is upon this nation, this state, and even this place, and the saints here feel and know that it is so: Why, we ask, are the saints thus afflicted with the wicked? Because they have been guilty of the same things, they have in too many instances pursued the same course, been accessory to a train of circumstances that have produced the same legitimate effects. Others have been guilty of wild speculation and visionary dreams of wealth and worldly grandeur, as if gold and silver were their gods, and houses, farms and merchandise their only bliss or their passport to it: so have we. Others have managed their temporal concerns as if they had no precedents upon which to act, or beacons on the page of history or in the annals of by-gone years, to light their path. So have we in too many instances. Others appear to have neglected, or forgotten, that causes produce effects, and that the same causes, cæteris paribus, produce the
same effects. So have the saints here. These, you see, are natural philosophical principles, and inasmuch as others have lost sight of them, and plunged themselves into a vortex of ruin, so far as we have followed them or departed from those principles, perplexity and ruin attend us. God is a God of justice and no respecter of persons. He will not visit his people that know his will and do it not, with few stripes.-He will not pass lightly over iniquity, or let the unjust go unpunished. The pulpit and the press should with one accord speak boldly against iniquity, in high places and in low ones. And if judgments are to begin at the house of God, reformation must necessarily begin there also. If we have faith in God, let us in all meekness and humility implore his pardon for our past sins, that his judgments may be averted and his anger be turned away. In our temporal pursuits let us consider that honesty, prudence, economy and industry, are the only sure passports to wealth or competence. That all the faith we may pledge to accomplish temporal business, will avail us nothing aside from correspondent good works or the regular application of those principles that have long since been proven and the results definitely known.
TO OUR READERS.
We publish below some resolutions drawn up and approved by the quorum of Seventies and their Presidents. We are pleased with them, because we admire strict discipline, and because we believe them in strict accordance with the letter and spirit of the revelations given for the direction of the saints.
We certainly have no fellowship for those who live in the daily violation of the plain, written commands of God; and we are sure the Lord will withhold entirely or withdraw his spirit, from all such as disobey or disregard his precepts. We care not whether such members are in high stations or low ones, whether they are officers or lay members; we are sure God is no respecter of persons, but he that feareth him and worketh righteousness only is accepted with him. God has made no proviso in any thing that has yet come to our knowledge, for a President, a Counsellor [counselor], one of the Twelve, a High Priest, an Elder, a Priest, Teacher or Deacon to violate any of the commands he has given. And most assuredly, as the Lord liveth and reigneth, we do know, that he who lives in daily neglect of the solemn acts of devotion, he who knowingly violates the words of wisdom which the Lord has given, sets at nought the counsels of the Most High, disregards the commands which he has given for the benefit and government of his saints, becomes weak in the faith once delivered to them, and unless he speedily repent and reform, he will apostatize and fall away.
We speak definitely and pointedly on this subject, because we feel the weight and importance of it. If, as the Lord has said, strong drinks are not to be taken internally, can those who use them thus be held guiltless? We ask, if hot drinks are not to be used, if those who make use of them do not transgress his commands, or at least set at nought his counsel? Most assuredly they do.
Have not the authorities of the church in council assembled in this place, decided deliberately and positively that if any official member of this church shall violate or in any wise disregard the words of wisdom which the Lord has given for the benefit of his saints, he shall lose his office? What official member does not know this? Brethren, either we believe this to be a revelation from God, or we do not. If we do not, we are acting the part of liars and hypocrites in the sight of God to say we are in the faith of the revelations and commandments of God which we have received. If we do, why disobey them and disregard them, and so live in open, avowed and acknowledged transgression, to our own soul's injury and the grief of our brethren?
You may plead former habits, as an extenuation of your guilt, but we ask if the Almighty did not know your habits and the propensities of your nature? Certainly he did. Has he made any exceptions in your case, or are you wiser than he? judge ye.
These, to many, may appear like small items; but to us, any transgression of the commands of God, or a disregard of what he has said, is evincive of a determination to gratify our own corrupt vitiated taste, the word of the Lord to the contrary notwithstanding.
The Presidents of the Seventies met in council in the House of the Lord, on the 29th of April, 1837, and after opening the meeting by prayer, they proceeded to take into consideration some difficulties, either real or imaginary, existing among the Seventies; aud [and] believing that every elder who is called to proclaim the gospel to the nations of the earth, should in all things conduct himself like a man of God, adopted, among others, the following resolutions: 1st-That we will have no fellowship whatever with any Elder belonging to the quorums of the Seventies who is guilty of polygamy or any offence of the kind, and who does not in all things conform to the laws of the church contained in the Bible and in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants.
2d.-That we discard the practice of ball-playing, wrestling, jumping and all such low and degrading amusements, and above all the use of ardent spirits of any kind; and will have no fellowship with any member of our quorum who indulges himself in the practice of such things.
3d.-That these resolutions be signed by the chairman and clerk, publicly read on the next Sabbath for the approval of the Seventies, and published in the Messenger and Advocate.
DANIEL S. MILES, Chair.
ELIAS SMITH, Clerk.
We have inserted below the form of a certificate to be given to the members of the quorum of High Priests who shall or may be called on to preside over churches and settle difficulties, and instruct in righteousness, the saints of God. We do so, that our brethren abroad may learn the names of the officers of said quorum, and consequently, know to whom they ought to apply for assistance in the discharge of any of the duties pertaining to High Priests.
This certifies that is a member of the quorum of High Priests, organized in Kirtland according to the order of the church of Latter Day Saints, is in good standing, is fully authorized to set in order churches abroad and preside in all councils to adjust differences and settle difficulties in the same, where God in his providence may call him. Done by order and in behalf of the quorum.
DON C. SMITH, Pres't.
W. A. COWDERY,
G. H. CARTER,
HARLOW REDFIELD, Sec.
For the comfort and consolation of our brethren abroad, we say that we have cheering reports from the different branches of the churches. They appear to be anxious to hear and know the truth. Elders are called in all directions, and doors are opened for preaching the word. Some of the elders have already gone out on missions for the season, and some yet remain here. We have not yet heard from those who have already gone, but from their energy, zeal and experience, we trust we shall shall shortly have a good report from them.
The Lord be with them and bless them, and prosper them abundantly.-May he dispose the hearts of the people to hear, to understand and to embrace the truths they inculcate.
Churchville, April 24, 1837.
At a conference held in the above place, the following official members being present: Elders P. P. Pratt, J. Taylor, J. Russell; John Snider, Priest; Joseph Fielding, Teacher. Eld Pratt was called to preside, and the following persons were ordained: Wm. Law to
the office of an elder, Theodore Turley, priest and Jacob Scott, teacher. The number of members in good standing is twenty.
The presence of the Lord was with us; the manifestation of the Spirit was clear and the votes of the members unanimous-and we were led to praise God that he was pleased to call new laborers into his vineyard, and thus facilitate the progress of his work in the coming forth of his kingdom and prepare a people for the glorious advent of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever. Amen.
MARRIED-On the 8th of March last, by Elder Hyrum Stratton, Mr. CHARLES ADAMS to Miss ALICE PATTISON; both of Portage, Allegheny co. N. Y.
--In this town, on Sunday evening the 14th inst, by F. G. Williams, Esq. Elder PARLEY P. PRATT to Mrs. MARY ANN STEARNS. --On the same evening, by Elder -- Allen, Mr. HEZEKIAH FISK to Miss LODICIA SLY.
DIED-In this town, on the 9th inst. ELIZABETH ANN, daughter of Oliver and Elizabeth Ann Cowdery, aged five months and twenty-five days.
--In Brownhelm, Ohio, on the 3d inst. FRANCIS WEEDON, who had been a member of the church of Latter Day Saints about five years. He appeared sensible that the time of his departure was at hand, and manifested a willingness to go. [Com. --In Fallsburgh, Sullivan co. N. Y. on the 12th March last, THEDY GILLET, widow of Austin Gillet, aged fifty-six years. The deceased was a member of the church of Latter Day Saints, and died in hopes of a glorious resurrection. [Com. DROWNED, in Wolf creek, in the town of Copley, Medina county, Ohio, CORYDON, son of David Taylor, aged five years. [Com.
There will be a general conference of elders of the church of Latter Day Saints, held on the tenth day of June next, at or near Artemus Judd's, in the township of Bastard, Leeds county, Upper Canada. The elders abroad are solicited to attend, particularly any of the "Twelve." The conference will coutinue [continue] from day to day, until the business thereof shall be finished.
There will undoubtedly be every necessary accommodation and convenience, that is possible for the brethren to make to render visiting brethren comfortable.
JOHN E PAGE. Perth, U. C. April 10, 1837.
The Messenger & Advocate Office and contents, recently owned by Smith and Rigdon, have been transfered [transferred] to Wm. Marks of Portage, Allegany County N. Y. Messrs. Smith & Rigdon, by power of attorney from said Marks, will act as his agents for the time being. W. A. Cowdery will still continue in charge of the editorial department, to whom all communications, by mail relative to the business of the office, should be addressed. WILLIAM MARKS DEALER IN BOOKS, STATIONERY, CAP, LETTER, AND WRAPPING PAPER. Plain and Ornamental JOB PRINTING. CARDS, BLANKS, HAND BILLS, CHECKS, NOTES, SHOW-BILLS, DRAFTS, LABELS, Together with Book, and every other description of Printing; as also Blank Books of all kinds executed in a superior style, on short notice.
MESSENGER AND STAR,
Bound together, or in separate volumes can be had at this office.
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