Times and Seasons, 15 October 1842

  • Source Note
Page 950
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doctrine of his church, which should be re-established in the last days, and to prepare her for the second coming of Christ. The author of this little work is a native of , and for the last 11 years almost since its organization an elder of this church; on April 1st 1830 the church was formed in the town of , county of Ontario, state of New York with 6 members, but soon she grew to hundreds and thousands; when the church was fully organized, prophets and apostles were made known amongst them called of God; they then were ordained to high and accountable offices, and anointed with the holy oil.
The rapidity, although under the most unfavorable auspices, with which these doctrines spread over and , is evidence, that in them (the doctrines,) there is a hidden might and power that is well calculated to draw the attention of a thinking people. The number of the united brethren in the two countries is 80,000. The aim of this little work is to set forth the ground work and doctrine of our church, which is named the “Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.”
Since the rise of this church we have had to fight ourselves through various obstacles—the tongue of scandal and false reports turned upon us; the press and pulpit threw stones of stumbling with a free hand in our way, yet if this had only been all, we would have had little cause to complain, but our enemies seeing that their moral power not being sufficient to stop the quick progress, our doctrine made, had recourse to other weapons and their own language was: “We will meet them with arguments of blood,” and hence they came upon us sword in hand, they burnt many of our houses, destroyed our crops, killed our cattle, and in cold blood murdered and miserably maimed 30 of our brethren, even when they offered no resistance, and a great many of these were elders.
As an American I feel pained to make known such acts of barbarity of my countrymen, but the ever-ruling Power that mixeth the interest of all nations, demands the sacrifice of every local connection, and the loud acknowledgement of truth as a warning to all nations, that they might guard themselves not to become the originators of such misery.
In this storm of persecution that took place in the winter of 1838–39, near 200 Saints were thrown into prison, after the lapse of a few days some were set at liberty, others remained three or four weeks, others remained in chains six months, and yet at the expiration of this time although their enemies were their judges, they got their liberty. 12,000 souls were banished in the depth of winter, their houses, goods, fields, &c. their enemies took as spoil.
All this took place under a government whose whole actions were contrary to the laws of the States, but dreaded in us a rival power. The matter is now before Congress, and it is hoped that the evil that has been heaped upon an innocent and inoffensive people, will be redressed by this honorable Assembly. We had to wade through deep sorrow and humiliation most poignant, yet like a young and tender mother whose love increases to newborn infant in proportion to the pain she had by its birth, so likewise our love to our religion gets stronger by the barbarious hand of persecution, which brings banishment, prison and death upon us.
They have done no more to us than they have done to our Lord and Master, and the Saints of the former days, and if we like them suffer in this world, we hope to become glorified with them in that land that lays out of the reach of the aggressor’s hand.
The reader is most earnestly invited to read this little work with care and attention: let no one judge hastily of its contents or condemn it rashly, but let him pray in the name of the holy child Jesus from the very inmost of his soul, that light and knowledge, joy and gladness may descend, to quicken his spirit and to hear his holy wishes.
How welcome are unto us the rays of the morning after the dark shades of the night. So we may likewise feel after a long night of spiritual darkness, under which the earth with its inhabitants has been groaning for so many hundred years. An angel, yes an angel sent by the Almighty descended to take away the veil of darkness from off the understanding of some, that they might be ready to receive the rays of truth that will warm and rejoice the hearts of many. Welcome, yes welcome thou messenger of heaven, and thrice welcome the message thou bringest unto us! O best of Fathers, I pray thee in the name of thy holy child Jesus, to [p. 950]
doctrine of his church, which should be re-established in the last days, and to prepare her for the second coming of Christ. The author of this little work is a native of , and for the last 11 years almost since its organization an elder of this church; on April 1st 1830 the church was formed in the town of , county of Ontario, state of New York with 6 members, but soon she grew to hundreds and thousands; when the church was fully organized, prophets and apostles were made known amongst them called of God; they then were ordained to high and accountable offices, and anointed with the holy oil.
The rapidity, although under the most unfavorable auspices, with which these doctrines spread over and , is evidence, that in them (the doctrines,) there is a hidden might and power that is well calculated to draw the attention of a thinking people. The number of the united brethren in the two countries is 80,000. The aim of this little work is to set forth the ground work and doctrine of our church, which is named the “Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.”
Since the rise of this church we have had to fight ourselves through various obstacles—the tongue of scandal and false reports turned upon us; the press and pulpit threw stones of stumbling with a free hand in our way, yet if this had only been all, we would have had little cause to complain, but our enemies seeing that their moral power not being sufficient to stop the quick progress, our doctrine made, had recourse to other weapons and their own language was: “We will meet them with arguments of blood,” and hence they came upon us sword in hand, they burnt many of our houses, destroyed our crops, killed our cattle, and in cold blood murdered and miserably maimed 30 of our brethren, even when they offered no resistance, and a great many of these were elders.
As an American I feel pained to make known such acts of barbarity of my countrymen, but the ever-ruling Power that mixeth the interest of all nations, demands the sacrifice of every local connection, and the loud acknowledgement of truth as a warning to all nations, that they might guard themselves not to become the originators of such misery.
In this storm of persecution that took place in the winter of 1838–39, near 200 Saints were thrown into prison, after the lapse of a few days some were set at liberty, others remained three or four weeks, others remained in chains six months, and yet at the expiration of this time although their enemies were their judges, they got their liberty. 12,000 souls were banished in the depth of winter, their houses, goods, fields, &c. their enemies took as spoil.
All this took place under a government whose whole actions were contrary to the laws of the States, but dreaded in us a rival power. The matter is now before Congress, and it is hoped that the evil that has been heaped upon an innocent and inoffensive people, will be redressed by this honorable Assembly. We had to wade through deep sorrow and humiliation most poignant, yet like a young and tender mother whose love increases to newborn infant in proportion to the pain she had by its birth, so likewise our love to our religion gets stronger by the barbarious hand of persecution, which brings banishment, prison and death upon us.
They have done no more to us than they have done to our Lord and Master, and the Saints of the former days, and if we like them suffer in this world, we hope to become glorified with them in that land that lays out of the reach of the aggressor’s hand.
The reader is most earnestly invited to read this little work with care and attention: let no one judge hastily of its contents or condemn it rashly, but let him pray in the name of the holy child Jesus from the very inmost of his soul, that light and knowledge, joy and gladness may descend, to quicken his spirit and to hear his holy wishes.
How welcome are unto us the rays of the morning after the dark shades of the night. So we may likewise feel after a long night of spiritual darkness, under which the earth with its inhabitants has been groaning for so many hundred years. An angel, yes an angel sent by the Almighty descended to take away the veil of darkness from off the understanding of some, that they might be ready to receive the rays of truth that will warm and rejoice the hearts of many. Welcome, yes welcome thou messenger of heaven, and thrice welcome the message thou bringest unto us! O best of Fathers, I pray thee in the name of thy holy child Jesus, to [p. 950]
Page 950