The Evening and The Morning Star/1/12
|←Number 11|| The Evening and The Morning Star
Volume 1, Number 12
|Source document in Mormon Publications: 19th and 20th Centuries online archive: The Evening and The Morning Star Vol. 1
Note: Some headings and bracketed texts are editorial and not part of the original text.
|THE EVENING AND THE MORNING STAR|
|Vol. 1.||Independence, Mo. May, 1833||No. 12.|
-> Having given, in a previous number, the Preface to the book of Commandments now in press, we give below, the close, or as it has been called, the Appendix. It affords us joy to lay before the saints, an article frought [fraught] with so much heavenly intelligence; having previously published many from the same book for their instruction.
We hope that while they read it, they will remember, that it is a voice from him who spake as never man spake. We hope that while they are blessed with revelation upon revelation, with commandment upon commandment, and with precept upon precept, they will remember to do them. We hope that while they are thus blessed with the precious word of their Lord from heaven, in these last days, to fulfill that which was spoken in days of old, they will hearken to his counsels and lend an ear to all his precepts.
Indeed it is a source of joy to us, to know, that all the prophecies and promises which are contained in them, which have not been fulfilled, will come to pass. The saints may lift up their heads and rejoice, for their redemption will soon be perfected. Soon the curtain of heaven will be unfolded, as a scroll is unfolded after it is rolled up, and they will see their Lord face to face. In view of these coming scenes, they may lift up their heads and rejoice, and praise his holy name, that they are permitted to live in the days when he returns to his people his everlasting covenant, to prepare them for his presence.
The book from which this important revelation is taken, will be published in the course of the present year, at from 25, to 50 cents a copy. We regret that in consequence of circumstances not within our control, this book will not be offered to our brethren as soon as was anticipated. We beg their forbearance, and solicit an interest in their prayers, promising to use our exertions with all our means to accomplish the work.
Hearken, O ye people of my church, saith the Lord your God, and hear the word of the Lord concerning you; the Lord who shall suddenly come to his temple; the Lord who shall come down upon the world with a curse to judgment; yea, upon all the nations that forget God, and upon all the ungodly among you.
For he shall make bare his holy arm in the eyes of all the nations, and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of their God:
Wherefore, prepare ye, prepare ye, O my people; sanctify yourselves; gather ye together, O ye people of my church, upon the land of Zion, all you that have not been commanded to tarry.
Go ye out from Babylon. Be ye clean that bear the vessels of the Lord. Call your solemn assemblies, and speak often one to another.
And let every man call upon the name of the Lord; yea, verily I say unto you, again, the time has come when the voice of the Lord is unto you, Go ye out of Babylon; gather ye out from among the nations, from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.
Send forth the elders of my church unto the nations which are afar off; unto the islands of the sea; send forth unto foreign lands; call upon all nations; firstly, upon the Gentiles, and then upon the Jews.
And behold and lo, this shall be their cry, and the voice of the Lord unto all people: Go ye forth unto the land of Zion, that the borders of my people may be enlarged, and that her stakes may be strengthened, and that Zion may go forth unto the regions round about:
Yea let the cry go forth among all people: Awake and arise and go forth to meet the Bride-groom:
Behold and lo the Bride-groom cometh, go ye out to meet him. Prepare yourselves for the great day of the Lord. Watch, therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour.
Let them, therefore, which are among the Gentiles, flee unto Zion. And let them who be of Judah, flee unto Jerusalem, unto the mountains of the Lord's house.
Go ye out from among the nations, even from Babylon, from the midst of wickedness, which is spiritual Babylon.
But verily thus saith the Lord, let not your flight be in haste, but let all things be prepared before you: and he that goeth, let him not look back, lest sudden destruction shall come upon him.
Hearken and hear O ye inhabitants of the earth. Listen ye elders of my church together, and hear the voice of the Lord, for he calleth upon all men and he commandeth all men every where to repent: for behold the Lord God hath sent forth the angel crying through the midst of heaven, saying: Prepare ye the way of the Lord, and make his paths strait, for the hour of his coming is nigh, when the Lamb shall stand upon mount Zion, and with him a hundred and forty-four thousand, having his Father's name written in their foreheads:
Wherefore, prepare ye for the coming of the Bride-groom: go ye, go ye out to meet him, for behold he shall stand upon the mount of Olivet, and upon the mighty ocean, even the great deep, and upon the islands of the sea, and upon the land of Zion; and he shall utter his voice out of Zion, and he shall speak from Jerusalem, and his voice shall be heard among all people, and it shall be a voice as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of a great thunder, which shall break down the mountains, and the valleys shall not be found:
He shall command the great deep and it shall be driven back into the north countries, and the islands shall become one land, and the land of Jerusalem and the land of Zion, shall be turned back into their own place, and the earth shall be like as it was in the days before it was divided.
And the Lord even the Savior shall stand in the midst of his people, and shall reign over all flesh. And they who are in the north countries shall come in remembrance before the Lord, and their prophets shall hear his voice, and shall no longer stay themselves, and they shall smite the rocks, and the ice shall flow down at their presence.
And an high way shall be cast up in the midst of the great deep. Their enemies shall become a prey unto them, and in the barren deserts there shall come forth pools of living water; and the parched ground shall no longer be a thirsty land. And they shall bring forth their rich treasures unto the children of Ephraim my servants.
And the boundaries of the everlasting hills shall tremble at their presence.-And then shall they fall down and be crowned with glory, even in Zion, by the hands of the servants of the Lord, even the children of Ephraim; and they shall be filled with songs of everlasting joy.
Behold this is the blessing of the everlasting God upon the tribes of Israel, and the richer blessing upon the head of Ephraim and his fellows.
And they also of the tribe of Judah, after their pain, shall be sanctified in holiness before the Lord to dwell in his presence day and night for ever and ever.
And now verily saith the Lord, that these things might be known among you, O inhabitants of the earth, I have sent forth mine angel, flying through the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel, who hath appeared unto some, and hath committed it unto man, who shall appear unto many that dwell on the earth, and this gospel shall be preached unto every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, and the servants of God shall go forth, saying, with a loud voice:
Fear God and give glory to him: for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and sea, and the fountain of waters, calling upon the name of the Lord day and night, saying:
O that thou wouldst rend the heavens, that thou wouldst come down, that the mountains might flow down at thy presence. And it shall be answered upon their heads, for the presence of the Lord shall be as the melting fire that burneth, that as the fire which causeth the waters to boil.
O Lord, thou shalt come down to make thy name known to thine adversaries, and all nations shall tremble at thy presence. When thou doeth terrible things, things they look not for; yea, when thou comest down and the mountains flow down at thy presence, thou shalt meet him who rejoiceth and worketh righteousness, who remember thee in thy ways:
For since the beginning of the world have not man heard nor perceived by the ear, neither hath any eye seen, O God, besides thee, how great things thou hast prepared for him that waiteth for thee.
And it shall be said, Who is this that cometh down from God in heaven with died [dyed] garments; yea, from the regions which are not known, clothed in glorious apparel, travelling [traveling] in the greatness of his strength?
And he shall say, I am he who spake in righteousness, mighty to save. And the Lord shall be red in his apparel, and his garments like him that treadeth in the wine vat, and so great shall be the glory of his presence, that the sun shall hide his face in shame; and the moon shall withhold its light; and the stars shall be hurled from their places:
And his voice shall be heard, I have trodden the wine-press alone, and have brought judgment upon all people; and none was with me; and I have trampled them in my fury, and I did tread upon them in mine anger, and their blood have I sprinkled upon my garments, and stained all my raiment: for this was the day of vengeance which was in my heart.
And now the year of my redeemed is come, and they shall mention the loving kindness of their Lord, and all that he has bestowed upon them, according to his goodness, and according to his loving kindness, forever and ever. In all their afflictions he was afflicted.
And the angel of his presence saved them; and in his love, and in his pity, he redeemed them, and bare them, and carried them all the days of old; yea, and Enoch also, and they who were with him; the prophets which were before him, and Noah also, and they who were before him, and Moses also, and they who were before him, and from Moses to Elijah, and from Elijah to John, who were with Christ in his resurrection, and the holy apostles, with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, shall be in the presence of the Lamb.
And the graves of the saints shall be opened, and they shall come forth and stand on the right hand of the Lamb, when he shall stand upon mount Zion, and upon the holy city, the New Jerusalem, and they shall sing the song of the Lamb day and night forever and ever.
And for this cause, that men might be made partakers of the glories which were to be revealed, the Lord sent forth the fulness [fullness] of his gospel, his everlasting covenant, reasoning in plainness, and simplicity, to prepare the weak for those things which are coming on the earth; and for the Lord's errand in the day when the weak should confound the wise, and the little one become a strong nation, and two should put their tens of thousands to flight; and by the weak things of the earth, the Lord should thresh the nations by the power of his Spirit. And for this cause these commandments were given; they were commanded to be kept from the world in the day that they were given, but now are to go forth unto all flesh.
And this according to the mind and will of the Lord, who ruleth over all flesh; and unto him that repenteth and sanctifieth himself before the Lord, shall be given eternal life. And upon them that hearken not to the voice of the Lord, shall be fulfilled that which was written by the prophet Moses, That they should be cut off from among the people.
And also that which was written by the prophet Malachi: For behold the day cometh that shall burn as an oven, and all the proud; yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up saith the Lord of Hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch.
Wherefore this shall be the answer of the Lord unto them: In that day when I came unto my own, no man among you received me, and you were driven out.-When I called again, there was none of you to answer, yet my arm was not shortened at all, that I could not redeem, neither my power to deliver.
Behold at my rebuke I dry up the sea. I make the rivers a wilderness: their fish stinketh, and dieth for thirst. I clothe the heavens with blackness, and make sackcloth their covering.
And this shall ye have of my hand, ye shall lay down in sorrow.
Behold and lo there are none to deliver you, for ye obeyed not my voice when I called to you out of the heavens, ye believed not my servants; & when they were sent unto you ye received them not: wherefore they sealed up the testimony and bound up the law, and ye were delivered over unto darkness: these shall go away into outer darkness, where there is weeping, and wailing, and gnashing of teeth.-Behold the Lord your God hath spoken it. Amen.
PREACH THE WORD.
It is very necessary that the disciples of our Lord, especially those that have come up to the land of Zion for an inheritance, and those that have been planted in their inheritance, should have the word preached unto them, that they may understand the peaceable things of the kingdom. Wisdom is profitable for the saints. Jeremiah said: The Lord is the true God, he is the living God, and an everlasting King; at his wrath the earth shall tremble, and the nations shall not be able to abide his indignation: he hath made the earth by his power, he hath established the world by his wisdom. And it is certainly important, that all who have come up to the land of Zion, professing to be the disciples of Christ, while blessed with knowledge and wisdom from on high, should be dictated with wisdom enough, to walk in obedience to all the commandments, and observe all the statues of their Lord, not by constraint but willingly, that their reward may be from above.
While in the world, surrounded with fashions, vanities, abominations, and evil spirits, it can not be expected that the members of the church of Christ, considering their opportunities to acquire knowledge, having but little time, or opportunity, with the elders who declare the word to them, can be free from the world; neither is it expected that they will have a knowledge of the evil spirits which are abroad in the earth, nor keep all the commandments, and have an understanding of all the statues of the Lord, as perfectly, as those who have been upon the land of Zion for years. Where much is given, much will be required. How important then, that all walk perfectly, so that, when the destroying angel goes through, he may pass over them and not slay them. Not all that say Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom.
This being the last generation of the wicked, before the Lord comes to his temple, satan will exert himself, and use all his power to overthrow, or hinder the progress of Christ's kingdom. Every deception, therefore, that he is master of, will be practiced, as far as he has power, that he may deceive some, and lead them to destruction. John said in one of his epistles, supposed to have been written ninety eight years after the birth of our Lord: Believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God; because many false prophets are gone out into the world. If false prophets, and evil spirits were then in the world, what less is to be expected now, since the world has been engrossed in wickedness, and lain in darkness for ages; the sacred scriptures been robbed of their plainness, and man set himself up as a guide, to direct his fellow beings to happiness by his own wisdom? Is it not important, that the disciples try the spirits, and be reminded continually of the word of the Lord to his ancient disciples, when he said: Watch, therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of Man cometh? For it is the pure in heart that shall see God.
After Paul had been writing to Timothy concerning things which would come to pass in the last days, he says: I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; preach the word; be instant in season, and out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with all long suffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; and they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.
It might be well to bear in mind, that Paul was then writing to the first bishop of the church at Ephesus, and notwithstanding he had previously written to his Ephesian brethren, reminding them of the great promises of the Lord, yet Timothy was required to watch, and labor with all diligence, that they might be blameless, as some of them would not endure, but turn from the truth. And when Paul called the elders of the church at Ephesus, unto him at Miletus, which was the last time they saw his face in the flesh, he said: Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the flock of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood. For I know this, that after my departing, shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.
After Paul had declared to his Ephesian brethren, that those who first trusted in Christ, should be to the praise of his glory, he says: in whom also, after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that Holy Spirit of promise, which is the earnest of our inheritance, until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory. This then, was the condition of one of the churches built up by the ancient apostles: some were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, and some would not endure sound doctrine; and even of the elders, Paul said, some should arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them, &c.; so that Timothy was charged to reprove, rebuke and exhort, with all long suffering and doctrine. And the Lord has said in these last days, that there will be foolish virgins among the wise until he comes. This has always been the case in the church of Christ on earth, more or less since the beginning, except in the days before the city of Enoch was taken to the bosom of the Father.
To be prepared for the coming of the bridegroom, is an all-important preparation; we must have oil in our vessels, and our lamps trimmed and burning. How necessary then, that we walk in humility before the Lord: this certainly is pleasing unto him, for if we walk so, he bestows his Spirit. In this condition we can search his holy commandments, and learn our duty. For unless we keep all his commandments blameles [blameless] with thanksgiving, we are not prepared to meet him.-By keeping his commandments, we have the promise of his blessings; and by keeping his commandments, we are endowed with the Comforter, and by it, we can try all the spirits and know whether they are of the Lord or not.
To have the Spirit of the Lord always in our hearts, requires a perfect walk in his statutes. A thousand things may be imagined in our minds, and for an instant supposed to be of the Lord, but to be certain, they must be compared with the word, and found to agree. The creations of the Lord, roll in their regular courses, and the stars move in their beautiful order, and will till their time is fulfilled. So likewise with his word. If it has been written and sealed up for ages; if it has been kept from the eyes of man from generation to generation, because of wickedness, when it is brought forth by his own gift and power, the same beauty will manifest itself in it, without a jar or discord, as in that which has been permitted to remain, and still more, as it is given in plainness.
Every good and perfect gift is from above: every thing that enlightens, every thing that invites to do good and persuades men to believe in Christ, is sent forth by his gift and power; every spirit then manifested which edifies, is of the Lord if he from whom it is manifested obeys his ordinances.
As all were not called, nor chosen for the same office, it behooves every disciple to watch that they are not deceived. Our Lord says: To some is given by the Holy Ghost, to know that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and that he was crucified for the sins of the world; to others it is given to believe on their words, that they also might have eternal life if they continue faithful. And again, to some it is given by the Holy Ghost to know the differences of administration, as it will be pleasing unto the same Lord, according as the Lord will, suiting his mercies according to the conditions of the children of men. And again it is given by the Holy Ghost to some to know the diversities of operations, whether it be of God or not, so that the manifestations of the Spirit may be given to every man to profit withal.
As all have not the same gift, but to some it is given to discern all the gifts, lest some should be manifested and not be of the Lord, and thereby the church be deceived, we beseech all the disciples to search diligently the revelations, and learn the order of the kingdom of our heavenly Father. In this way we shall be preserved from evil, and delivered from seducing spirits and doctrines of devils and the commandments and precepts of men. Every thing in the church of God must be conducted in order, according to the authority of the offices which he has given; for these all were given for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.
In this way, while we are taught from the revelations, and guided by the Holy Spirit, we are strengthened, and grow up in all things, into him who is our head, even Christ; and when the rains descend, and the floods come, and the winds blow, we shall not be harmed neither moved. But if we deviate from his word, and hold not his sacred oracles carefully, we have not the assurance of his protection from the storm of the enemy, who is stirred up in great anger, knowing he has but a short time.
It requires much time and study to learn all the commandments of the Lord but when we have learned them, they will profit us, for they are sure.
We may readily see by the 14th chapter of Paul's first epistle to the Corinthians that he was careful of sacred things, and preserve order. He says: Let all things be done unto edifying. Moroni, in speaking of the manner of conducting meetings among the Nephites when they were righteous, says, they were conducted by the church after the manner of the workings of the Spirit, and by the power of the Holy Ghost.
In a revelation given for the instruction of the church in these last days, it reads: But notwithstanding these things which are written, it always has been given to the elders of my church from the beginning, and ever shall be, to conduct all meetings as they are directed and guided by the Holy Spirit.
Again it reads: But ye are commanded in all things to ask of God who giveth liberally, and that which the Spirit testifies unto you, even so I would that ye should do in all holiness of heart, walking uprightly before me, considering the end of your salvation, doing all things with prayer and thanksgiving, that ye may not be seduced by evil spirits, or doctrines of devils, or the commandments of men; for some are of men, and others of devils.
Wherefore, beware lest ye are deceived! and that ye may not be deceived, seek ye earnestly the best gifts, always remembering for what they are given; for verily I say unto you, they are given for the benefit of those who love me and keep all my commandments, and him that seeketh so to do, that all may be benefitted [benefited], that seeketh or asketh of me, that asketh and not for a sign that he may consume it upon his lusts.
There is much said about miracles, and thousands suppose if they could see one performed, they would believe. When Moses had received the message from the Lord, while feeding the flocks of his father-in-law at the Mount Horeb, he returned to Egypt, and in company with Aaron, called the elders of the children of Israel together, and performed those signs in the sight of the people, which were given them of the Lord, and they believed: and when they heard that the Lord had visited the children of Israel, and that he had looked upon their affliction, then they bowed their heads and worshiped [worshipped]. But when they were performed before Pharaoh, he said: Who is the Lord, that I should obey his voice to let Israel go? I know not the Lord, neither will I let Israel go.
It would seem, that some among the servants of Pharaoh believed the word of the Lord by Moses, when the hail was about to come upon the Egyptians, for they caused that their cattle and their servants should flee into the houses. And also, when the locusts were to be sent into the coasts of Egypt, some of the servants of Pharaoh said: How long shall this man be a snare unto us? let the men go, that they may serve the Lord their God: knowest thou not yet that Egypt is destroyed?
Here we have a sample how far signs and wonders, and even judgments, convince mankind, or the wicked, of the existence and power of God.
When Moses visited his brethren the children of Israel, when he was forty years old, he supposed they would have understood how that God by his hand would deliver them; but they understood not: and in consequence of his avenging one who was oppressed, he was obliged to flee. But after remaining in the land of Midian forty years, the children of Israel by this time, were humbled by oppression, and heavy burdens, so that, when the message from the Lord came, they were ready to believe; but Pharaoh in his pride, said: Who is the Lord? and was driven on in his wickedness and hardness of heart, until he, and his mighty host, were drowned in the Red Sea.
After the children of Israel were saved from the power of their enemies; brought forth into the desert; fed with angel's food, and with quails to their fill; the Lord going before them by day in a pillar of a cloud, to lead them; and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light; after hearing the voice of the living God in the thunder from Sinai, and even Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, with seventy of the elders of Israel, went up with Moses, where they saw the God of Israel: after Moses had gone up into the mount to receive the precious oracles from his own hand, because he delayed to come down, they took their golden ear rings fashioned them with a graving tool, after they had made them a molten calf, and said: These be thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt.
Paul, at the close of his epistle to his brethren at Rome, says: Whatsoever things were written aforetime, were written for our learning. Peter, in his second epistle, says, that the Lord turned the cities of Sodom & Gomorrah into ashes, condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly. If the saints in the days of Paul, could learn by those things which were written before them, and if the Lord made ensamples of the wicked by destroying them in days of old, would it not be wisdom for those who are favored with the oracles of God in these last days, to beware and hold them carefully?
After the children of Israel were brought to mount Sinai, the Lord said unto Moses, Thus shalt thou say to the house of Jacob, and tell the children of Israel; ye have seen what I did unto the Egyptians, and how I bare you on eagle's wings, and brought you unto myself. Now therefore, ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine. And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation.
But they despised the promised rest, and in their hearts turned back into Egypt, and rejected signs and wonders; and after forty years' travel, were permitted to enter the land of Canaan. In these last days their seed will again be brought to inherit the same land, the righteous among all nations be gathered according to the word of the Lord, & those who keep his commandments, see his face, while those who do not, perish.
Having taken sufficient from the history of the ancients, to show the dealings of the Lord with them, by all these examples we may in our day receive instruction. In fact, it only needs a careful examination of the records of olden time, to convince the unprejudiced and sincere, that great things await the inhabitants of the earth in the last days.
Much is said in our day relative to the literal fulfillment of ancient prophecy.-Some assert, that the ancient prophecies are to be literally fulfilled. Others say that those pointing to the coming of the Messiah, were to be, and were literally fulfilled, but the remainder of the prophecies contained in the bible, are to be Spiritually understood, and that they are not to be fulfilled literally, or are not to take place as they read, according as they were spoken by the mouths of the prophets.
We find a prophecy contained in the 18th chapter of Deuteronomy, spoken by Moses, thus, I will raise them up a Prophet [the children of Israel] from among their brethren, like unto thee. In the third chapter of the Acts, Peter says, this is he [Christ] of whom Moses spake. Thus we see, that the words of Moses concerning the coming of Christ, were literally fulfilled. Peter says further, that it shall come to pass, that every soul which will not hear that Prophet shall be destroyed from among the people. A part of that prophecy, so far as it related to the first coming of Christ, then, according to the scriptures, has been fulfilled as it was spoken; and who will say that the remainder shall not be?
Isaiah said, Behold, a Virgin shall conceive and bare a Son, and shall call his name Immanuel. This prophecy according to Matthew, was literally fulfilled, probably between seven and eight hundred years after it was spoken.
The word of the Lord to the Israelites, was, that they should be scattered if they rejected his word; and in the 17th chapter of II Kings, we learn that they were led away captive out of their own lands. The Jews were admonished from time to time, and the Lord said that they should be carried captive to Babylon, and according to the scriptures, in the days of Zedekiah their king, they were. He also said that they should return and re-build Jerusalem, and after seventy years' captivity, this promise was literally fulfilled.
In five hundred and thirty years from the end of their captivity, the Savior was born in Bethlehem of Judea, as Matthew says: for thus it is written by the prophet, And thou Bethlehem in the hand of Judea, art not the least among the princes of Judah: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel.
Micah, who probably delivered the above prophecy, lived in the days of Isaiah, as it will be seen by the commencement of the two books. Indeed, his comes very near the words recorded in Matthew. He says, But thou, Bethlehem, Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be Ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.
When Christ rode into Jerusalem, Matthew says all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying, Tell ye the daughter of Sion, Behold, thy King cometh unto thee, meek, and setting upon an ass, and a colt the foal of an ass. Zechariah, from whose prophecy the above no doubt is taken by Matthew, lived at, or near the time of the return of the Jews from Babylon, and is the only prophet in the Bible, who mentions a prophecy of this, or of similar kind, of our Savior's entering Jerusalem riding upon a beast.
He says, Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion, shout, O daughter of Jerusalem; behold, thy King cometh unto thee; he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass. This then, has been literally fulfilled. The Lord has rode into Jerusalem according to the word of the prophet, amid acclamations of joy from the multitude, saying, Hosanna to the son of David! Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest!
Before the Savior was crucified, when instructing his disciples concerning the destruction of Jerusalem, and the signs of his coming, he says, There shall be great distress in the land, and wrath upon this people. [The Jews.] And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled. The prophecy concerning the destruction of Jerusalem, and the scattering of the Jews, was literally fulfilled. All who are acquainted with the history of Jerusalem, know that it has been trodden down by the Gentiles, notwithstanding all the efforts made in the holy wars, to wrest it from the power of barbarism.
In these quotations, we have a plain sample of the literal fulfillment of ancient prophecy; and not finding any rule directing them to be understood different, given by those from whose mouths were delivered, the rules of men formed by their own wisdom, certainly must fail to establish the principle in the mind of the diligent searcher after truth, that they were ever designed by the great Author of them, to be understood in the least, contrary from what they were actually spoken, by those who spake moved by the Holy Ghost.
Many parables were spoken by our Savior, and many figures, types, similitudes, &c., were set forth by the ancient prophets. We conclude then, that a parable is to be taken, or understood and applied as a parable; and that figures, types, or similitudes, are to be understood and applied as such. But if the plain word of God, without a parable, without a similitude, and without a type, spoken to man, with all the fulfillment of plain prophecy which ever has been from the beginning to Christ, and from that time to the present, for examples, is not now, in these last days to be literally fulfilled, then certainly a change has taken place, and the Lord is a respecter to persons, and dealt better with our fathers than with us! but this is not the case: he ever remains unchangeably the same.
The prophet that said, rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee; he is just, and having salvation, lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass; which was literally fulfilled; also said: Behold, the day of the Lord cometh, and thy spoil shall be divided in the midst of thee. For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle; and the city shall be taken, and the houses rifled, and the women ravished; and half of the city shall go forth into captivity, and the residue of the people shall not be cut off from the city.
It may be thought by some, that the destruction and captivity here mentioned, would refer to the time of the captivity of the Jews, by Nebuchadnezzar; but a moment's reflection is sufficient to correct the idea, as only half were to be cut off and go into captivity: and also, this prophecy was spoken after the destruction of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar, who took all except the poor with him to Babylon, and they, [the poor] in a short time fled into Egypt, and Jerusalem and the land of Judea lay waste; and, according to the words of the prophet Jeremiah, enjoyed her Sabbaths for seventy years.
Some may suppose, that if this captivity does not mean the captivity of the Jews by Nebuchadnezzar, that it may be applied to the destruction of Jerusalem after the Savior was crucified: but this is not so, because when Jerusalem was destroyed by the Romans, no part was left. According to the account, one million one hundred thousand of the Jews perished, ninety seven thousand were taken prisoners; besides an innumerable company in other places of Judea, killed themselves, or perished through famine, banishment, or other miseries.
It can be seen further by the expression of the prophet, that this captivity has not yet been, for he says that when one half of the city goes forth, and the other half not cut off, that, Then shall the Lord go forth, and fight against those nations as when he fought in the day of battle. By the expression above, it will be seen that all nations are to be gathered against Jerusalem at the time of this captivity, which has never been at any of her previous destructions. By the mouth of Jeremiah before the Babylonish captivity, the Lord said, Behold, I will send and take all the families of the north, saith the Lord, and Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon my servant, and will bring them against this land, and against the inhabitants thereof, and against all these nations round about, & will utterly destroy them, and make them an astonishment, and a hissing, and perpetual desolations.
By this prophecy from Jeremiah, it may be seen that all nations were not to be gathered against Jerusalem at the time of Nebuchadnezzar's conquest over it, but that the nations round her, were also to become subject to him as well as the Jews; for he further says, These nations shall serve the king of Babylon seventy years.-But at the end of seventy years, he would punish the king of Babylon, and that nation, and the land of the Chaldeans, and make it perpetual desolations.
But when all nations are gathered against Jerusalem to battle, and the city is taken, &c., and the Lord goes forth to fight against those nations, as when he fought in the day of battle, the prophet says, then, at that time, His prophet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east; and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a great valley: and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south.
If the last quotation is to be literally fulfilled, then certainly the Lord himself will come upon the earth once more for the salvation of his people, and according to the word of the prophet, set his feet again upon the mount of Olives before the city of Jerusalem. That the captivity spoken of by Zechariah, does not mean the destruction of Jerusalem by Titus, is plain, because then the city was utterly destroyed, and according to the word of the Savior to his apostles before he was crucified, the Jews were led captive into all nations: when at the time, of which Zechariah speaks, only a half of the city is to go into captivity, while the residue are not to be cut off from the city.
At the time when the Lord sets his feet upon the mount of Olives, agreeable to Zechariah, and the mount divides so as to form a valley, he further says, [speaking of the inhabitants] And ye shall flee to the valley of the mountains; for the valley of the mountains shall reach unto Azal: yea, ye shall flee, like as ye fled from before the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah: AND THE LORD MY GOD SHALL COME, AND ALL THE SAINTS WITH THEE. And it shall come to pass in that day, that the light shall not be clear nor dark: but it shall be one day which shall be known to the Lord, not day, nor night: but it shall come to pass, that at evening time it shall be light.
If this prophecy is to be literally fulfilled yet, and the following which immediately succeeds it will also show that it has not been: then the inhabitants of the earth may rely upon the certainty of the Savior's making his appearance in person from heaven. Zechariah further says, And it shall come to pass in that day, that living waters shall go out from Jerusalem; half of them toward the former sea, and half of them toward the hinder sea: in summer and in winter shall it be. And the Lord shall be King over all the earth: in that day there shall be one Lord, and his name one.
All the land shall be turned as a plain from Geba to Rimmon, south of Jerusalem: and it shall be lifted up, and inhabited in her place, from Benjamin's gate unto the place of the first gate, unto the corner gate, and from the tower of Hananeel unto the king's wine-presses. And men shall dwell in it, and there shall be no more utter destruction; but Jerusalem shall be safely inhabited.
All who are acquainted with the situation of Jerusalem, know that there is but the small brook Cedron, which takes its rise there, and that empties into the sea of Sodom, or the lake of Sirbon, anciently called, now called the Dead Sea. But the prophet said, that living waters should go out from Jerusalem in summer and in winter, half toward the former sea, and half toward the hinder sea. Ezekiel who was among the captive Jews in the land of Chaldea, after giving a description of the re-settling of the Israelites in the land of Canaan in the last days, and after giving a plan, or description of the house of the Lord then to be built, says, Afterward he brought me again unto the door of the house; and, behold, waters issued out from under the threshold of the house eastward: for the forefront of the house stood toward the east, and the waters came down from under, from the right side of the house, at the south side of the altar. Then brought he me out of the way of the gate northward, and led me about the way without unto the outer gate by the way that looketh eastward; and, behold, there ran out waters on the right side. And when the man that had the line in his hand went forth eastward, he measured a thousand cubits, and he brought me through the waters; the waters were to the ancles [ankles]. Again he measured a thousand, and brought me through the waters; the waters were to the knees. Again he measured a thousand, and brought me through; the waters were to the loins. Afterward he measured a thousand; and it was a river that I could not pass over: for the waters were risen; waters to swim in; a river that could not be passed over.
From the prophecy of Ezekiel then, we also learn, that a change is to take place at Jerusalem, if this prophecy is yet to be fulfilled; and that it yet remains to be fulfilled, must be admitted from the facts, that those waters mentioned, do not now flow; and, that the land of Palestine has never been divided into inheritances for the whole twelve tribes of Israel, as mentioned by him since they were led away captive by Shalmaneser king of Assyria in the days of Hoshea king of Israel, seven hundred and between twenty and thirty years before Christ came in the flesh.
From this prophecy of Zechariah, if we may understand him as it is written, we may conclude, that the Lord is coming on earth yet before the end, and, that from the city of Jerusalem, where now rises the small stream Cedron, living waters will go out from thence in summer and in winter; and according to Ezekiel, they will be a great river. A material change will also take place with the country south of Jerusalem according to Zechariah. The city is now situated on a rocky mountain, on all sides of which are steep ascents, except toward the north. But he says, all the land shall be turned as a plain from Geba to Rimmon, south of Jerusalem: and it shall be lifted up, and inhabited in her place. Men shall dwell therein safely; and utter destruction shall no more be known.
Again, the prophet that said, A virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, also said, Jerusalem is ruined, and Judah is fallen; because their tongue and their doings are against the Lord, to provoke the eyes of his glory. He further says, Through the wrath of the Lord of Hosts is the land darkened, and the people shall be as the fuel of the fire: no man shall spare his brother. And he shall snatch on the right hand, and be hungry; and he shall eat on the left hand, and they shall not be satisfied: they shall eat every man the flesh of his own arm: Manasseh, Ephraim; and Ephraim, Manasseh: and they together shall be against Judah.
But he says, it shall come to pass that the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea. And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious. And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people which shall be left, from Assyria, and from Egypt, and from Pathros, and from Cush, and from Elam, and from Shinar, and from Hamath, and from the islands of the sea. -And he shall set up an ensign for the nations, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth. The envy also of Ephraim shall depart, and the adversaries of Judah shall be cut off; Ephraim shall not envy Judah, and Judah shall not vex Ephraim. If this prophecy is to be literally fulfilled, then the Lord will yet gather the Israelites from their dispersion, as Isaiah further says,
The Lord will have mercy on Jacob, and yet choose Israel, and set them in their own land: and the strangers shall be joined with them, and they shall cleave to the house of Jacob. And the people shall take them, and bring them to their place; and the house of Israel shall possess them in the land of the Lord for servants and handmaids: and they shall take them captives, whose captives they were; and they shall rule over their oppressors.
Perhaps some may think, that the last quotation was fulfilled when the Jews returned from Babylon. But it will be recollected, that the house of Israel, as the ten tribes were called after their revolt from the house of David in the commencement of the reign of Rehoboam the son of Solomon, were not led to Babylon, but were taken away more than one hundred years before the Babylonish captivity.-And that this prophecy can not be applied to the Jews, will be admitted from the fact, that when they returned from Babylon, they neither took those captives, whose captives they were, nor did they rule over their oppressors.
Some may suppose, that if the above prophecy of the return of Israel, when they were to rule over their oppressors, does not mean the return of the Jews from Babylon, it is to be understood in a spiritual sense, or in some manner different from the plain words. But it can be seen in the preceding chapter, that the destruction of Babylon is spoken of by the Lord by the mouth of the prophet where he says,
Behold, I will stir up the Medes against them, which shall not regard silver; and as for gold, they shall not delight in it. Their bows shall dash the young men to pieces; and they shall have no pity on the fruit of the womb; their eye shall not spare children. And Babylon, the glory of kingdoms, the beauty of the Chaldees' excellency, shall be as when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah. It shall never be inhabited, neither shall it be dwelt in from generation to generation; neither shall the Arabian pitch tent there, neither shall the shepherds make their folds there: but wild beasts of the desert shall lie there; and their houses shall be full of doleful creatures; and owls shall dwell there, and Satyrs shall dance there. And the wild beasts of the islands shall cry in their desolate houses, and dragons in their pleasant palaces; and her time is near to come, and her days shall not be prolonged.
It can be seen from Daniel, that this prophecy upon Babylon, so far as related to its being taken by the Medes, took place in the days of Belshazzar the son of Nebuchadnezzar; and that it has long remained desolate, a habitation for dragons, and a court for owls, a lasting monument of the literal fulfillment of ancient
prophecy, can not but be admitted by all. Not a spire, not a tower, not a palace, nor scarce a wall, or even a stone remain visible, to show where once stood the ancient and splendid city Babylon, the glory of kingdoms, the beauty of the Chaldeas' excellency.
From Isaiah then, we find the prophecy of the coming of the Messiah, and the destruction of Babylon; and we find from others, that both were literally fulfilled. If we are to understand that the remainder of his prophecy is to be literally fulfilled, (and he has left no rule to the contrary) then certainly, the children of Israel may lift up their heads and rejoice, for they will yet be gathered. For the prophet, after saying that the earth should be full of the knowledge of the Lord, and that the Lord should set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people, says, that the Lord shall utterly destroy the tongue of the Egyptian sea; and with his mighty wind shall he shake his hand over the river, and shall smite it in the seven streams, and make men go over dry-shod. And there shall be a highway for the remnant of his people, which shall be left, from Asyria: like as it was to Israel in the day that he came up out of the land of Egypt.
When the defenced [defended] city is desolate, the habitation forsaken, and left like a wildernes [wilderness], Isaiah says, It shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall beat off from the channel of the river unto the stream of Egypt, and ye shall be gathered one by one, O ye children of Israel. And it shall come to pass in that day, that the great trumpet shall be blown, and they shall come which were ready to perish in the land of Assyria, and the outcasts in the land of Egypt, and shall worship the Lord in the holy mount at Jerusalem.
The Lord also says by Isaiah, Upon the land of my people shall come up thorns and briers, yea, upon all the houses of the joyous city: because the palaces shall be forsaken; the multitude of the city shall be left; the forts and towers shall be for dens forever, a joy of wild asses, a pasture of flocks, until the Spirit be poured upon us from on high, and the wilderness be a fruitful field, and the fruitful field be counted for a forest. Then judgment shall dwell in the wilderness, and righteousness remain in the fruitful field. And the work of righteousness shall be peace; and the effect of righteousness, quietness and assurance forever. And my people shall dwell in a peaceable habitation, and in sure dwellings, and in quiet resting-places, when it shall hail coming down on the forest; and the city shall be low in a low place.
From these prophecies then, we conclude, that if the Lord ever brought the children of Israel out from Egypt, and divided the waters that they might pass over in the days of Moses; even so in the last days he will gather them again, and according to the prophet, smite the river in the seven streams or beat off from the channel of the river unto the stream of Egypt and cause them to pass over dryshod. If Jerusalem and the land of Judea, were inhabited in ancient days by the children of Israel, even so in the last days they will be again.
For the Lord has said, Awake, awake; put on thy strength, O Zion: put on thy beautiful garments, O Jerusalem, the holy city: for henceforth there shall no more come into thee the uncircumcised and the unclean. Again he says, Break forth into joy, sing together ye waste places of Jerusalem: for the Lord hath comforted his people, he hath redeemed Jerusalem.
If the Lord ever made his appearance in the flesh, was born in Bethlehem of Judea, rode into Jerusalem, was smitten upon the cheek, slain upon the cross, rose from the dead and ascended on high according to the scriptures, then in these last days he will set his feet upon the mount of Olives, deliver his people, that Jerusalem become a quiet habitation, and no more be destroyed.-For the prophet said, The Lord my God shall come and all the saints with thee: Thus will he come in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory; and while the sound goes forth, Prepare to meet the Bridegroom, we beseech all the disciples of our Lord to be also ready. For the time is at hand when every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low, and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain: and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together, for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.
For the time is at hand, when the Lord will bring again the captivity of Jacob's tents and have mercy on his dwelling-places: for thus says the Lord by the prophet, the city shall be builded upon her own heap, and the palace shall remain after the manner thereof. And out of them shall proceed thanksgiving, and the voice of them that make merry: and I will multiply them, and they shall not be few; I will also glorify them, and they shall not be small. Their children also shall be as aforetime, and their congregations shall be established before me, and I will punish all that oppress them. And ye shall be my people, and I will be your God.
For the time is near when that which was written by Jeremiah concerning the house of Israel, will be fulfilled, which says, Therefore, behold, the days come saith the Lord, that it shall no more be said, The Lord liveth that brought up the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt; but, the Lord liveth that brought up the children of Israel from the land of the north, and from all the lands whither he had driven them: and I will bring them again into their land that I gave unto their fathers. Behold, I will send for many fishers, saith the Lord, and they shall fish them; and after will I send for many hunters and they shall hunt them from every mountain and from every hill, and out of the holes of the rocks.
For the time is near, when the Lord will bring Israel again to his habitation, and he shall feed on Carmel and Bashan, and his soul shall be satisfied upon mount Ephraim and Gilead. In those days and in that time saith the Lord, the iniquity of Israel shall be sought for, and there shall be none; and the sins of Judah, and they shall not be found: for I will pardon them whom I reserve.
None need mistake relative to the time of the fulfillment of the above prophecy; nor need any suppose for a moment that it has yet been fulfilled, for Jeremiah, (by whose mouth it was spoken) lived long after the house of Israel were led away captive, who have not since returned to their former habitation in righteousness, when their iniquity has been sought for and there was none: but the time is near.
And the time is near when the Lord will fulfil [fulfill] his promise to the house of Israel, and to the house of Judah, according to his covenant, when he will put his law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; when he will be their God, and they will be his people. When none will have occasion to say to his neighbor, or brother, Know the Lord: for all will know him from the least of them to the greatest of them. These promises are sure to the children of Israel, as the fact is certain, that the Lord gives the sun for a light by day, and the ordinances of the moon and stars for a light by night; and that heaven above can not be measured, and the foundations of the earth searched out beneath by man.
For the time is near when the Lord will rend the heavens, and come down, and the mountains flow down at his presence. When he will reign in mount Zion, and in Jerusalem, and before his ancients, gloriously: when there are none to molest or make afraid in all his holy mountain. Therefore, we again beseech the disciples of our Lord, to let solemnity rest upon their minds, to lift up their heads and rejoice, and put their trust in him whose word never fails, and whose course is one eternal round.
THE EVENING AND THE MORNING STAR.
Lo, children are a heritage of the Lord, says the Psalmist; and our Savior said, Wisdom is justified of her children: let them, then, be trained up in the way they should go, that when they are old, they may not depart from it: let them be trained up in the commandments of the Lord, and they will be saved in his kingdom.
After Lehi had finished speaking to his sons, as he was about to leave this world, he said to the children of his eldest son: Behold, my sons and my daughters, which are the sons and the daughters of my first born, I would that ye should give ear unto my words; for the Lord God hath said, That inasmuch as ye shall keep my commandments, ye shall prosper in the land; and inasmuch as ye will not keep my commandments, ye shall be cut off from my presence. But behold, my sons and my daughters, I can not go down to my grave, save I should leave a blessing upon you. For behold, I know that if ye are brought up in the right way that ye should go, ye will not depart from it. Wherefore, if ye are cursed, behold I leave my blessing upon you, that the cursing may be taken from you, and answered upon the heads of your parents.
Among many nations, some of the children are schooled and taught much of the wisdom and knowledge of the world, that they may have a knowledge of men and things, and become famous. If, then, the world, merely for gain and fame, which, to their children, can not last longer than life, train them up to science and learning, for the sake of happiness in this state of existence, how much more necessary is it, that the disciples of Jesus Christ should teach their children, not only in common learning to transact business among men, but in the knowledge of God, which points out their way to eternal life?
As soon as Adam became a member of the church of Christ, by being baptized and receiving the Holy Spirit, he received a commandment to teach his children; which is the first example of teaching children, and might serve as a profitable lesson to all the disciples of our Lord in these last days to do likewise, lest the blood of their souls be required at their hands in a day to come.
We feel anxious on this point, when we reflect upon a certain clause of a revelation given for the benefit of the saints in November, 1831, and particularly for the saints in Zion, who are required to teach their children the doctrine of repentance, faith in Christ the Son of the living God, that they may be baptized, and receive the Comforter, and all this by the time they are eight years old. Certainly, then, there is to be an important duty attended to, by all who are blessed with children in Zion. In the world, surrounded with wickedness, children are allowed (many of them) to do as they please, or as their fancy leads them, being allured by the scenes of vice and folly constantly presented before them, until they grow up to years, and then are prepared themselves to fill the same paths of wretched depravity.
But in Zion, where the disciples are blessed with the oracles of God from time to time, they may so instruct their children, especially those that are now young, that they will be strangers to the thousand vices which now shock the meek and honest in heart, who are striving to do the will of the Lord in the world. Here
they may be kept from polluting the holy Sabbath, from strolling about according to their own wills, and mingling with those who blaspheme the name of their Maker. Here they may be taught to appear before the Lord from time to time, and unite their petitions to him with their parents, and call down the richest blessings from above upon their heads: so that, out of the mouths of babes, praise may be perfected. Here they may grow up in righteousness, and be prepared to meet their Lord in peace, when he comes in his glory.
How important then, that they be watched over, and instructed in a feeling and impressive manner. How important that they be taught to be sober, and avoid every vain and foolish amusement. How important that they be taught to love one another, and always speak the truth: and that for every word they will have to give an account. How important that they be taught to avoid quarrels, and angry words. How important that they be taught that God sees their hearts, and knows the thoughts and intents of the same. How important that they be taught the example of the Savior, who, when he was reviled, reviled not again. How important that they be taught that he laid down his life for mankind, and that ere long he will judge the secrets of all hearts, and that none can escape the glance of his all-searching eye.
Up to the days, when the tower of Babel was built, there was but one language, and how far the knowledge of men extended as a whole family, we shall not pretend to say. But notwithstanding Noah and his sons were saved from destruction, because of wickedness the earth was divided in the days of Peleg, the sixth from Noah; after which Abraham was called, and unto him and his seed the promises were made.
The words that the Lord gave to Moses for Israel, were commanded to be taught diligently unto their children also, that they might grow up in the knowledge of God. Rich and important instructions may be gained from a perusal of the commandments given to the children of Israel. He said thou shalt rise up before the hoary head, and honor the face of the old man, and fear thy God: I am the Lord.
We said we would not pretend to say how far the knowledge of the world extended as one great family, even up to the days when the tower was built: but as to the saints, we have a right to say from facts revealed, that, before the flood, they knew more than the world will believe now: yes they had a knowledge of the mysteries of eternity, that have been hid from the eyes of the wicked men for ages and generations; mysteries and glories which have been sought for by holy men, and seen by an eye of faith, even the city of Enoch, that was taken up to the bosom of the Father.
What is learnt in childhood, is retained in age: so then, let us teach our children the great virtues that make men good; and the truth from God that guides to eternal life.
We will teach them to trust in the arm of the Lord; to respect their parents; to honor age, and not rove abroad; for hundreds that have roamed to foreign parts, have been ruined. When children, as soon as they are old enough are seen seeking employment and diversion for themselves, we may calculate, in nine cases out of ten, that they have not been taught strictly to keep the commandments of the Lord, for if they had, the words of truth would always be in their hearts: Lord, lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
Men, that have not professed to be guided by the revelations or religion of Jesus, have had wisdom enough to adopt the maxim of the poet:
"'Tis education forms the common mind,
Just as the twig is bent the tree's inclin'd."
Now, if the world at large, form their minds by precept, how much more noble will it be in the sight of the Lord, for the saints to teach their children by example.
When men preach about being saved, before a scrutinizing generation, they must show, by example, that they are heirs of eternal life themselves, or who will be bettered by what they say? If children are taught to be humble, and keep the commandments of God, they set a pattern for mankind, that the angels will rejoice over. The Savior, when speaking of little children, said: Of such is the kingdom of heaven.
The prayers of the righteous avail much; yea, much more than many are aware of; and it ought to be impressed upon the minds of children. It ought to be impressed upon their minds also, as soon as they are old enough to know good and evil, that this life is one in which they must prepare for another: that this world will pass away, and bring them in the resurrection, into the presence of Jesus Christ, if they have kept his commandments, where they will live and reign.
It is a glorious thought, that some of the present generation will live to see great things, but it is more glorious to reflect, that the time is near when all that live will know the Lord, from the least even to the greatest: Then the children will be a heritage of God.
It is generally admitted that Saint John wrote his book of Revelations in the year 96 after the birth of the Savior. There has been much said by many on the import of the two following verses, viz: For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: and if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, & from the things which are written in this book.
Now let the reader take notice, that the words of the prophecy of this book, meant the Revelation of Saint John, and not the whole bible as some have endeavored to make the world believe.
If John meant any other book than his Revelation, it would have been better for him to have written his gospel and his epistles first: But the Index to the Holy Bible, which is appended to many Great Bibles, has this information: Saint John is banished into the isle of Patmos by Domitian, and there receives and writes his Revelation. After the death of Domitian St. John returns to Ephesus, and at the request of the church writes his gospel.
The fact is, the various books of the bible were not put together, in form, for many hundred years after John wrote the Revelations, and when authorised [authorized] to be translated into English, by king James, the translators rejected some books, as doubtful, & admitted others with a small majority of one or two votes, as is said, and all this, too, without a prophet to inquire of the Lord, and know what was right.
John was the beloved disciple of the Lord, and would never be the first to break the Revelations of his Savior.
Again: to show that the above quoted verses meant the book of Revelations, it is thus written in the tenth chapter, And I went unto the angel, & said unto him, Give me the little book. And he said unto me, Take it, and eat it up; and it shall make thy belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey.
And I took the little book out of the angel's hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it my belly was bitter.
And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings.
This promise to John that he should again prophesy, brings to mind what the Savior said to him before he was crucified: Then Peter, turning about, seeth the disciple whom Jesus loved, following: (which also leaned on his breast at supper, and said, Lord which is he that betrayeth thee?)
Peter seeing him, saith to Jesus, Lord, and what shall this man do?
Jesus saith unto him, If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee, Follow thou me.
Then went this saying abroad among the brethren, that that disciple should not die: yet Jesus said not unto him, He shall not die; but If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee?
In one of the late revelations to the church in these last days, it is thus given of what was said: And the Lord said unto me, John my beloved, what desirest thou? and I said Lord, give me power that I may bring souls unto thee. -And the Lord said unto me: Verily, verily I say unto thee, because thou desiredst this, thou shalt tarry till I come in my glory.
EXTRACT OF A LETTER.
Rutland, Pa. March 19, 1833.
Dear Brethren in Zion, peace from God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ, be with you all. I rejoice much for what my ears hear and my eyes see, of the rising and spreading glory of Zion in these last days.
As the mild rays of the sun, poured forth upon the earth, causes vegetation to spring up, even so the rays that shine from Zion's hill, upon a benighted world, cause the fruits of righteousness to put forth in many parts of our land: And while we are yet struggling in the midst of spiritual Babylon, to save our souls, and them that hear us, it rejoices our hearts & feasts our souls, to hear through the medium of your Star, the success of our brethren who are also laboring in the vineyard, and have sent up their accounts to the land of Zion.
Now, inasmuch as it is requested in your paper, that the elders abroad should do thus, we, therefore take this opportunity to inform you, that we, through the grace of God, have shared a measure of the blessing shed forth in his new and everlasting covenant. About forty five have been baptized into the church where I live. Some have set out for the land of Zion, and nearly all the rest are ready to go up this spring.
I was baptized one year ago from last June, and after a close trial of about three weeks respecting the revelations and the gathering to Zion, my mind became clear, and I was ordained an elder in the church of Christ.
In the fall following, I went with brothers Potter and Bowen to Shaftsbury Vermont where a few received the work. In the winter several of us went to Mendon, New York, and the work of the Lord commenced here. From thence we went to Warsaw, then to Lake Erie, and home by the way of Angelica, preaching the word, and blessed be the name of the Lord, signs followed them that believed, insomuch that some who were sick was healed, and some spake with tongues and glorified God.
Last summer four of us from Rutland, and two from Mendon, went to the province of Upper Canada. We landed at Kingston, and labored at Ernest town and its vicinity. Here thousands flocked to hear the strange news; even so that the houses could not contain the multitude, and we had to repair to the groves. Hundreds were searching the scriptures to see if these things were so. Many were partly convinced, and some were wholly, so, when we left, and a small church was founded there. We have heard since we came away, that the cause of the Lord was prospering in that region.
Brother Miller, an elder that has travelled [traveled] with me in the two last routes, has baptized about twenty. I have baptized, in all, thirty-five; nine in Rutland and Sullivan; four in Columbia; seven in Troy and three in Canton, Pennsylvania; five in Shaftsbury, Vermont; one in Chenango, and one in Mendon, New York, and five in Ernest town, Upper Canada.
We have labored under some disadvantage, not having instructions till within a few months past, respecting this great work, other than the Articles book of Mormon, and the Comforter. But we remember, that where much is given, much is required, and where little is given, little is required: Therefore by the grace of God, we mean to improve the talent, or talents that we have received, that we may gain other talents: Hence we would call upon our brethren in Zion, from whence the light is to flow, and the law is to proceed, to remember us in Babylon, and let the strong bare the infirmities of the weak. Pray the heavenly Father to open an effectual door for us, to make our escape from the midst of spiritual wickedness, to the place of the name of the Lord of Hosts, the mount Zion.
We rejoice that the time has come, that the Lord has set his hand again the second time to gather his elect. That he has already set up the ensign and lifted the standard for the gathering of the nations; that the covenants and promises made to the fathers, concerning the remnants of his people, might be fulfilled.
And above all, we have great reason to rejoice, that we, as Gentiles, have the privilege of receiving the light manifested for their restoration; and by entering into the covenant, we may become the spiritual children of Abraham, and with Israel partake of the fatness and the fulness [fullness] of the olive tree.
We long to see the time when we can see the tribes of Israel's remnants, coming up to Zion with songs of everlasting joy; we long to see the time when Jacob's face will no longer wax pale; when the bride shall be adorned and ready for the Bridegroom; and finally, we long to see the time, when Jesus shall come in the clouds of heaven, with power and great glory, and be admired by all his saints.
Your brethren in the Lord,
The city of Florence stands in a delightful and extensive plain, fruitful, and filled with fine country places. The river Arno runs through it, over which are four fine bridges of stone: that called the Four Seasons has four large statues of marbles, respecting the four seasons of the year, at one end. It has but three arches, the vaults of which are almost flat: they are the admiration of architects. The work is of Michael Angelo Bonarotti.
Florence is near six miles in circuit, and contains above 90,000 souls, and as many in its territory. We must not expect to meet streets for palaces, like the Strada Nuova in Genoa, but it is a city so nobly adorned, that a certain person with justice remarked, it ought only to be shewn [shown] on holy-days. Its streets are spacious, well paved with large flat stones, called pietra forte, of which most of the houses are likewise built.
Its innumerable palaces, churchs, &c. are perfect models of architecture. It contains 152 churches, 89 convents, 22 hospitals, 16 public pillars, 2 pyramids, 4 bridges, 7 fountains, 17 squares, and 160 public statues, agreeable to the information of my guide. Its walls are in tolerable repair, but its strength consists chiefly in three fortresses: the first of five bastions, the other two falling into decay. They are called Belvedere, San Minato, and San Giovanni, (or St. John.) The Dome or Cathedral called our Lady del Fiore, is an immensely large Gothic edifice, founded in the year 1214.
It is covered with marble, both within and without, is 490 feet long, and to the cross on the globe upon the dome, 380 feet high; it is paved with fine marble: the choir is surrounded with pillars of marble, and with a great many figures of the same material. Over the high altar, all of marble, appears our Savior in his sepulchre [sepulcher], supported by Piety, in white marble: above is God the Father, holding a book in his hand. On the other side of the altar is Adam and Eve, covered with a leaf, standing under the Tree of Life, exquisitely carved in fine marble; all executed, as well as the high altar itself, by Bandinello.
Against the huge pillars in the church, stand the Twelve Apostles, curiously carved. That of St. James, by Sansovin, is most admired. One of St. Antonius of a gigantic size, is very well executed. Here are many mouments [monuments] of great men, as of Dante, the Tuscan Poet; of Marsilius Ficinus, the modern great Platonic philosopher, with his epitaph. Michael Angelo used to admire the cupola as an octagon 900 feet high. Each side of the octagon is 75 feet broad. A representation of the Last Judgment is painted on the inside of it by Zuccharo and Lazari; the outside is richly gilt: above the dome is a high capital upon pillars of white marble. The gilt globe seems not larger than a man's head; yet they assured us it would contain twenty men. This dome is the work of Brunischelli.
The steeple, II Campanile, or La Torre delle Compane, is a little separated from the church. It is a square building of a prodigious height, covered on every side with marble of different colors, red, white, and black, and adorned with innumerable great statues of incomparably carved, especially one of a bald old man by Donatelli. This towering steeple is ascended by 406 steps, and is reckoned 180 feet high. It was built by Jottus, a famous architect and painter, as we learn from his epitaph in this church, composed by the celebrated Angelus Politianus.-[Foreign Paper.]
SINCE our last, Letters have been received: One from Kirtland, Ohio; two from Bluffdale, and two from Mississippi-bottom, Illinois; one from Eugene, Indiana; one from Troy, and one from Rutland, Pennsylvania; one from Fieldsborough, one from Richmond, and two from Liberty, Missouri.
MEMORANDUM OF SIGNS, &c.
It is no more than will be expected of us to note the passing tidings, signs, and wonders of the day. The world is full of strange appearances, and all eyes are once and a while turned towards the coming events of the day, to catch a glimpse of what may be expected. There are great things near, and while one nation rises to rejoice, behold another sits down to weep. Verily the fountains of the nations will soon be broken up, for the Lord hath decreed a consumption, & none can stay his hand; yea, as Daniel said: unto the end of the war desolations are determined:
BALTIMORE, April 5.-The cholera in Havana. -Accounts received by the Fan Fan, this morning, from Havana, represent the progress of this most dreadful of all human afflictions as truly appalling. From the 24th of February to the 24th of March, five thousand [1,000 whites, and 4,000 blacks] had died of the disease -and, on the day before the sailing of the Fan Fan, five hundred persons are stated to have been taken off, and nearly the same number had been burned each day for several days previously.
CHINA.-On the 30th of October, 67 houses and 700 boats were burnt in the suburbs of Canton, (Sha-meen.) Ten persons perished. The rebels continued in force, and had destroyed two forts erecting against them at Leenchow.
Governor Le of Canton was reported to have been strangled, by order of the Emperor. Governor Le had ordered 300 members of the Triad Society to be put to death. Decapitations were frequent.
INDIAN TREATIES.-The Globe of Tuesday contains the treaty with the Menominees, as finally negotiated by Gov. Porter, of Michigan. Its chief object is to stipulate a reservation for the New York Indians on the east side of the Winnebago lake-The New York Indians, including the remnants of the Stockbridge, Munsees, Brothertown, St. Regis and Six Nation tribes, assenting.
The same paper of the 22d, contains the Chickasaw treaty, duly ratified, stipulating for the removal of the whole Chickasaw nation west of the Mississippi.
The Cherokees are now the only Indians remaining within any of the states.
GALLATIN, Ten. March 8.-We are informed, by a gentleman direct from the neighborhood, in whom implicit credit may be placed, that seven severe cases of the cholera occurred in the family of Mr. Tribew, in the north west part of this county, 12 or 15 miles from this place, three of which proved fatal within a very short time. The eyes of one is said to have bursted. -[Union]
CHOLERA AT OPORTO.-Captain Jennings of brig Marcellus, arrived yesterday from Malaga and Gibraltar, informs that the Cholera had broken out at Oporto, and was making considerable ravages. It was carried thither by the troops sent out for Don Pedro's army, several staff officers of which died on the passage. The disease first made its appearance among those of the inhabitants visited by the troops. This intelligence was brought to Gibraltar by the Hyperion, the master of which inadvertently mentioned the fact, and he was forthwith ordered to Port Mahon.
Two Portuguese vessels also arrived from Oporto while the Marcellus lay at Gibraltar, and were likewise ordered off. The news created great alarm at Gibraltar. This is the first account of the cholera in either Portugal or Spain.
A Proclamation, recently issued by our Board of Health,-exhorting our Citizens to early preparations for resisting a second invasion by the Disease which caused so much consternation last summer-has been republished by many intelligent journalists in other cities of the Union. The National Intelligencer says:-The solemn facts addressed to the Philadelphians, by the enlightened Board of that city, appeal with equal force to the inhabitants of every place which has been visited by the desolating scourge and especially of one where, on its first occurrence, its ravages were experienced with such dreadful severity as in this. Let the People, as well as the authorities, look to it, and do their part also, to avert the threatened return of the destroyer.-[Sat. Courier.]
RUSSIA.-Hamburg papers of the 12th, contain letters from Saint Petersburg; their contents refer chiefly to the prevalence of the influenza, under which more than 100,000 persons were suffering. It was still more violent at Moscow, where the Theatres [Theaters] were closed on account of it.
CHOLERA IN HAVANA.-By the arrival of the Topaz at New York bringing news to the 18th ult. information has been received that the Cholera is raging extensively in Havana. Within four or five days before the sailing of that vessel 4 or 500 people had fallen victims to the disorder, principally among the blacks, and whites of bad habits. Some of the more respectable people however had died, and the attacks of the disorder were as sudden and its course as short as they had been in other places. Business was very much at a stand in consequence.
JAMAICA.-A paper from Jamaica of the 2d of March, says:-We have scarcely had a drop of rain for the last three months. The shrubs and trees are suffering most materially-the pastures are withered up by the fiery breezes, unrelieved by the night dews, which are very scanty in this quarter of the country. The ground near the town is quite baked and cracked by the sun, and all vegetation is at a stand. The month of March usually brings rain, and there is an apparent change in the atmosphere at this moment. The prospects of the sugar crop is most unpromising. Several placards had recently been posted in the neighborhood of St. Ann's Bay, tending to excite rebellion and disobedience among the slaves.
The New Montreal Gazette, on the subject of the cholera, says: We take leave to ask what has been done by the constituted authorities of the province on this vitally important subject? If no precautionary measures have yet been adopted, not a moment longer should be lost. It is but reasonable to anticipate a second visit of this depopulating pestilence with the returning tide of emigration from Europe; and it then becomes the imperative duty of those who have the power, to guard, as far as human agency can, against a repetition of those scenes of desolation, which made our city a charnel house, and covered the whole province with mourners.
MELANCHOLY.-The Rival which sailed from Greenock for Operto, on the 22d November, with a crew of 37 men & 428 passengers for the service of Don Pedro, was totally lost on the 4th of December, near Galway, and every soul on board perished. The vessel was commanded by Mr. William Wallace, and the men for Portugal were under the charge of Captain Bygraves. The passengers were chiefly mechanics, journeymen operatives, weavers, and laborers, from almost every town and village in the west of Scotland, but principally from Galway.
LIBERIA.-In September, 1832, J. Muhlin, agent of the Colonization Society, at Liberia, wrote as follows:-With respect to the character of the people composing this expedition, I regret to be compelled to state that they are, with the exception of those from Washington, the family of Pages from Virginia, and a few others, the lowest and most abandoned of their class. From such materials it is in vain to expect that an industrious, intelligent, and enterprising community can possible be formed; the thing is utterly impracticable, and they can not but retard, instead of advancing the prosperity of the Colony. I have noticed this subject in one of my former communications, and nothing but a thorough conviction that such an influx of vagrants cannot fail of blasting the hopes, which our friends have so long & so ardently cherished, could have induced me again to advert to it. Our respectable colonists themselves are becoming alarmed at the great number of ignorant and abandoned characters that have arrived within the last twelve months, & almost daily representations are made by those, who have applied themselves to the cultivation of the soil, of the deep depredations committed on their crops by the above described people, who can not be induced to labor for their own support. -[North Star.]
VENEZUELA.-The Spanish "Redactor" of the city of New York, contains accounts from Caracas, of the prevalence of a dreadful mortality in the Canton of Calabozo, in the department of Apure. In every house there are or have been several persons sick or dead, and in some not an individual has been spared. The few persons who have the means of removing, emigrate to distant places, abandoning their dwellings, cattle and other property. Of the poor who are sick, the greater part die, and their bodies remain unburied, which increases the impurity of the atmosphere. These disastrous effects are aggravated by the want of physicians, medicines and subsistence.
SONGS OF ZION.
Age after age has roll'd away And for the gospel's saving grace,
Since man first dwelt in mortal clay; He prais'd the Father face to face.
And countless millions slept in death,
That once supplied a place on earth: The end of all his labors here,
Were all unfolded to him there:
According to the fate of man, His city rais'd to dwell on high,
Which God had fix'd in his own plan, With all the saints above the sky.
So age must come, and age must go
Till work complete is here below: He saw before him all things past,
From end to end, from first to last;
Which had been seen by saints of old, Yea, things before the world began,
And by the prophets were foretold; Or dust was fashion'd into man.
Which wondrous things are drawing near:
That Enoch saw, and saints did cheer. The place of Adam's first abode,
While in the presence of his God:
Enoch who did converse with God: Before the mountains rais'd their heads,
Stood on the mount and stretch'd abroad Or the small dust of balance weigh'd.
His soul wide as eternity:
He rent the vail and wonders see. With God he saw his race began,
And from him emanated man,
With mighty faith he did expand And with him did in glory dwell,
O'er earth and heaven, o'er sea and land, Before there was an earth or hell.
Till things above and things below
He did behold; yea, did them know. From age to age, whate'er took place,
Was present then before his face;
His heart he tun'd to notes above, And to the latest years of man,
His soul o'erwhelm'd with boundless love, Was plain before him, heav'ns' plan.
He sang a song in heav'nly lays,
While angels' tongues join'd him in praise. His eyes with wonder did behold,
Eternal glories yet untold;
With finger end God touch'd his eyes And glorious things of latter time,
That he might gaze within the skies; Which angels have to tell to men.
His voice he rais'd to God on high,
Who heard his groans and drew him nigh. He then did hear, in days of old,
The message that to John was told;
With joy and wonder, all amaz'd, The angel which the news did bring,
Amid the heav'nly throng, he gaz'd! He heard him talk and heard him sing.
While heav'nly music charm'd his ear,
And angels' notes, remov'd all fear. And knew before the days of John,
What glories were on him to dawn,
Hosanna, he aloud did cry, The message which he did receive,
To God who dwells above the sky: He heard and saw, and did believe.
Again, Hosanna did resound,
Among the heav'nly hosts around. He knew full well what John should hear,
Concerning times and latter years,
His voice he rais'd in higher strains, When God again should set his hand,
Echo'd and re-echo'd again, To gather Israel to their lands.
Till heaven and earth his voice did hear:
Eternity did record bare. The gospel then from darkest shades,
Should rise and go with rapid strides,
The trump of God around the throne Till nations distant, far and near,
Proclaim'd the power of God anon, The glorious proclamation hear.
And sounded loud what should take place,
From age to age, from race to race. The angel that this news proclaims,
Should come and visit earth again,
Among the heavenly hosts he sang Commit the gospel, long since lost,
God's scheme of life for sinful man, To man, with power, as at the first
Ere long the vail will rend in twain, When all the saints together join,
The King descend with all his train; In songs of love, and all divine.
The earth shall shake with awful fright,
And all creation feel his might. With Enoch here we all shall meet,
And worship at Messiah's feet,
The trump of God, it long shall sound, Unite our hands and hearts in love,
And raise the nations under ground; And reign on thrones with Christ above.
Throughout the vast domains of heav'n
The voice echoes, the sound is given. The city that was seen of old
Whose walls were jasper, and streets gold,
Lift up your heads ye saints in peace, We'll now inherit thron'd in might:
The Savior comes for your release; The Father and the Son's delight.
The day of the redeem'd has come,
The saints shall all be welcom'd home. Celestial crowns we shall receive,
And glories great our God shall give,
Behold the church, it soars on high, While loud hosannas we'll proclaim,
To meet the saints amid the sky; And sound aloud our Savior's name.
To hail the King in clouds of fire,
And strike and tune th' immortal lyre. Our hearts and tongues all join'd in one,
A loud hosanna to proclaim,
Hosanna now the trump shall sound, While all the heav'ns shall shout again,
Proclaim the joys of heav'n around, And all Creation say, Amen.
The Evening and the Morning Star
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