Revelation, , OH, 1 Mar. 1832. Featured version copied [ca. 1 Mar. 1832]; handwriting of ; two pages; Newel K. Whitney, Papers, BYU. Includes notation, docket, and archival marking.
One leaf of laid paper ruled with thirty-four blue horizontal lines (now faded). Slight deviations on the left and right edges indicate the page was cut from a book. The excised leaf measures 12¾ × 8 inches (32 × 20 cm). The leaf was folded in half and then tri-folded in letter style. A notation, also in the handwriting of , names “” as the recipient of the document. The document was later refolded for filing and docketed by Newel K. Whitney in graphite: “a command relative to | Newel, Joseph & Sidneys | Going to Zion 1 March 1832”.
This document and several other revelations, along with many other personal and institutional documents kept by , were inherited by his daughter Mary Jane Whitney, who married Isaac Groo. This collection was passed down in the Groo family and donated by members of the family to the Harold B. Lee Library at Brigham Young University during the period 1969–1974.
Andrus et al., “Register of the Newel Kimball Whitney Papers, 1825–1906,” 5–6.
Andrus, Hyrum L., Chris Fuller, and Elizabeth E. McKenzie. “Register of the Newel Kimball Whitney Papers, 1825–1906,” Sept. 1998. BYU.
This revelation deals with the church’s mercantile and publishing endeavors. As church members gathered to , Missouri, in 1831 to establish , the need for money to purchase land became pressing. In July 1831, a revelation instructed , who was a partner with in , to “establish a ” in , Jackson County, so that the church could receive “money to buy lands for the good of the Saints.” Gilbert opened a store in in early 1832 that was funded in part by Whitney and operated under the name Gilbert & Whitney. Whitney, who remained in , Ohio, to run his own (which had been in existence since at least 1824), received direction in 1831 to provide funding for the establishment of Zion.
Money was also needed to fund the publication of JS’s revelations, another venture church leaders began exploring in 1831. On 12 November 1831, a special conference in , Ohio, gave JS, , , and the responsibility of managing the “sacred writings” of the church, including the revelations. That same day, a revelation directed that JS, Cowdery, Whitmer, Rigdon, , and be ordained “ over the revelations & ” and that any “profits” they gained from publishing church materials over and above their needs be placed in the Lord’s to benefit “the inhabtants of Zion & . . . their generations.”
On 1 March 1832, JS, who was in on a short visit, assembled a group of , presumably to discuss the coordination of the church’s publication and mercantile endeavors. At the meeting, JS dictated this revelation, which instructed himself, , and to organize a “firm” to manage the “Literary and Merchantile establishments” of the church. The revelation also required JS, Rigdon, and Whitney to travel to and “sit in councel” with the church there and emphasized the need for church members to be equal in temporal things in order for unity to prevail in spiritual matters.
The original manuscript of the revelation is not extant. , who spent some time in March 1832 copying revelations into Revelation Book 2, made a copy of the document for , probably at the same time Williams recorded it in Revelation Book 2. Although it is unclear exactly when the Whitney copy was made, Williams probably made the entry in Revelation Book 2 sometime between 8 March (the date of a note that precedes the revelation) and 1 April (when JS departed for ). He titled the Revelation Book 2 copy “A Revelation given for Joseph & Newel to go an[d] sit in council with the elders in Zion, March 1— 1832.”
Revelation, 30 Aug. 1831 [D&C 63:42–43]; Jackson Co., MO, Deed Records, 1827–1909, vol. B, p. 33, 20 Feb. 1832, microfilm 1,017,978, U.S. and Canada Record Collection, FHL; Eakin and Eakin, Jackson County Missouri Court Minutes Book 1, 127, 143–144; Staker, Hearken, O Ye People, 209.
U.S. and Canada Record Collection. FHL.
Eakin, Joanne C., and O. B. Eakin, comp. Jackson County Missouri Court Minutes Book 1, 1827–1833, with Index; and Jackson County Missouri Death Register, 1883–1891. Independence, MO: By the author, 1988.
Staker, Mark L. Hearken, O Ye People: The Historical Setting of Joseph Smith’s Ohio Revelations. Salt Lake City: Greg Kofford Books, 2009.
Hearken unto me saith the Lord your God O ye who are unto the of my who have assembled yourselves together & listen to the councel of him who has ordained you from on high who shall speak in your ear the words of wisdom that salvation may be unto you in that thing which you have presented before me saith the Lord God for verily I say unto you the time has come and and is now at hand and behold & lo it must needs be that there be an organization of the Literary and Merchantile establishments of my church both in this place and in the land of for a perminent and everlasting establishment and firm unto my church to advance the cause which ye have espaused [espoused] to the salvation of man and to the glory of your Father who is in heaven that you may be equal in the bonds of heavenly things yea and earthly things also for the obtaining of heavenly of heavenly things for if ye are not equal in earthly things ye cannot be equal in obtaining heavenly thing[s] for if ye will that I give unto you a place in the you must prepare yourselves by doing <the> thing which I have commanded & required of you & now verily thus saith the Lord it is expedient that all things be done unto my glory that ye should who are joined together in this firm or in other words that my Servant and my servant Joseph and my servant sit in councel with the saints who are in otherwise seeketh to turn there hearts away from the truth that they become blinded & understand not the things which are prepared for them wherefore a I give unto you to prepare an[d] organize yourselves by an everlasting covinent which cannot be broken & he who breaketh it shall loose his office & standing in the church and shall be delivered over unto the buffitings of satan untill the day of redemption, Behold this is the preperation wherewith I prepare you and the foundation & the [p. ]
These high priests were likely JS, Sidney Rigdon, Newel K. Whitney, Reynolds Cahoon, Joseph Coe, and Hyrum Smith. Hyrum Smith recorded in his diary that these individuals met in Kirtland, Ohio, on 1 March. The diary reports that “farther Coe” was there—probably in reference to Joseph Coe. Smith and Cahoon were appointed counselors to Bishop Newel K. Whitney on 10 February 1832 and likely attended the meeting in that capacity. (Hyrum Smith, Diary and Account Book, 10 Feb. and 1 Mar. 1832.)
Smith, Hyrum. Diary and Account Book, Nov. 1831–Feb. 1835. Hyrum Smith, Papers, ca. 1832–1844. BYU.
A February 1831 revelation gave specific directions to the church and its leaders concerning the consecration and distribution of property to attain economic equality. Those instructions came in response to a previous revelation that promised such a law as a means of achieving temporal unity. This revelation further admonished the members of the church that “if ye are not one ye are not mine.” (Revelation, 9 Feb. 1831 [D&C 42:1–72]; Revelation, 2 Jan. 1831 [D&C 38:27].)
The copy of this revelation that John Whitmer made in Revelation Book 1 sometime after April 1832 has “a bond or an everlasting covenant” here. At some point, JS inserted “a bond or” before “an everlasting covenant” in the copy in Revelation Book 2. (Revelation Book 1, p. 145, and Revelation Book 2, p. 16 [D&C 78].)