Revelation, , OH, ca. 8 Mar. 1831. Featured version, titled “48th Commandment March ◊th. 1831,” copied [between ca. Mar. and June 1831] in Revelation Book 1, pp. 76–78; handwriting of ; CHL. Includes redactions. For more complete source information, see the source note for Revelation Book 1.
In the heading to this text in Revelation Book 1, wrote that it was directed “to the Church concerning & meetings &c.” JS’s revelations and the Book of Mormon addressed these topics even before the founding of the in 1830. In May 1829 JS dictated a passage as part of his of the which stated, “And behold, ye shall meet together oft, and ye shall not forbid any man from coming unto you when ye shall meet together, but suffer them that they may come unto you, and forbid them not.” Just weeks later drew upon these instructions in his “Articles of the Church of Christ,” which directed, “And the church shall meet together oft for prayer & suplication casting out none from your places of worship but rather invite them to come.” The JS document “Articles and Covenants,” unanimously approved at the 9 June 1830 of the church, stated the following concerning “church members after they are received by ”: “The or are to have a sufficient time to expound all things concerning this church of Christ to their understanding previous to their partaking of the sacrament, and being confirmed by the laying on of the hands of the elders, so that all things shall be done in order.”
When introduced this revelation in his history he explained: “In the beginning of the church, while yet in her infancy, the used to exclude unbelievers, which caused some to marvel, and converse about this matter because of the things that were written in the Book of Mormon. Therefore the Lord deigned to speak on this subject, that his people might come to understanding.” The revelation made clear that none were to be excluded from public worship meetings.
Besides clarifying matters related to church meetings, this revelation also addressed spiritual gifts, which were described in both the New Testament and the Book of Mormon. After JS’s arrival in , he encountered spiritual expressions that he deemed unacceptable. In a letter to his brother , JS reported that on 4 March, less than a week before dictating this revelation, he aided a woman who “had an awful strugle with but being armed with the power of God he was cast out and the woman is Clothed in hir right mind.” In the same letter, JS noted that since his arrival in Ohio, “I hav[e] been ingageed in regulating the Churches here as the deciples are numerous and the devil had made many attempts to over throw them it has been a Serious job but the Lord is with us and we have overcome and have all things regular.” This revelation lists some acceptable spiritual gifts and warns that others are of the devil.
given at geauga County Ohio to the concerning & meetings &c
Hearken oh ye my people of my Church for Verily I say unto you that these things are spoken unto you for your profit & learning but notwithstanding those things which are written it always has been given to the of my Church from the begining & ever shall be to conduct all meetings as they are conducted & guided by the Holy spirit nevertheless ye are commanded never to cast any one out from your publick meetings [p. 76]