Question: Did George A. Smith pray that the Lord would kill the mobbers that were attacking the Saints?

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Question: Did George A. Smith pray that the Lord would kill the mobbers that were attacking the Saints?

George A. does not say "kill the mobbers," or ask that their neighbors die, but rather the members prayed that the mob would be done away

Critics also report with disapproval George A. Smith's prayer that God would kill the mobbers:

We were a pious people in those days; but, notwithstanding our piety, our neighbours soon talked of mobbing us. They had already tarred and feathered the Prophet Joseph and Sidney Rigdon, and they threatened us with mobbing and expulsion. As I remarked, we were then very pious, and we prayed the Lord to kill the mob.

It was but a little time before the Saints were driven out of Jackson county, Missouri, the printing press destroyed, men tarred and feathered, women ravished, and men, women, and children scattered to the four winds of heaven, all in consequence of our religion.[1]

In the face of rape, murder, and expulsion, all the Saints did was pray to God to "kill the mob." George A. does not say "kill the mobbers," or ask that their neighbors die. They only wish for the persecution to stop; "our neighbours soon talked of mobbing us," and the members prayed that the mob would be done away.

If the critics insist on reading this as a plea for God to kill the mobbers, the Saints must at least be credited with leaving judgment and the meting out of justice to the Lord—they do not seek to do the killing themselves.

Notes

  1. George A. Smith, Journal of Discourses 5:107.