Times and Seasons (, Hancock Co., IL), 2 May 1842, vol. 3, no. 13, pp. 767–782; edited by JS. For more complete source information, see the source note for Letter to Isaac Galland, 22 Mar. 1839.
The 2 May 1842 issue of the Times and Seasons, a periodical published in , Illinois, was the thirteenth number in its third volume.JS purchased the and the newspaper from in February 1842 and was identified as its editor from 15 February to 15 October 1842. Although JS was named as the editor in the 15 February issue, he did not consider himself the editor of the newspaper until the 1 March 1842 issue. , , and others helped JS produce the Times and Seasons from March through October 1842, but JS was directly responsible for the content of the newspaper.
The fifth issue that JS oversaw as editor was dated 2 May 1842 and contained a letter to the Saints from the , urging them to fund the construction of the ; letters from missionaries and church members in the eastern and Europe; an extract of the “History of Joseph Smith,” which was printed serially in the newspaper; and reprinted articles from several other newspapers, including the church newspaper in , the Latter-day Saints’ Millennial Star. In addition to this material, the issue also contained editorial content, meaning content created by JS as the editor or his editorial staff for the paper. This content in the 2 May issue included commentaries on articles about mummies, an editorial on the Nauvoo temple, news from proselytizing , commentary on an article about Judaism, and notices concerning temple donations and a position with the printing office staff. Selected editorial content from the 2 May issue is featured here, with individual introductions for each passage.
Note that only the editorial content created specifically for this issue of the Times and Seasons is annotated here. Articles reprinted from other papers, letters, conference minutes, and notices, are reproduced here but not annotated. Items that are stand-alone JS documents are annotated elsewhere; links are provided to these stand-alone documents.
Vol. III. No. 13.]- CITY OF , ILL. May 2, 1842. -[Whole No. 49
AN EPISTLE OF THE TWELVE.
To the Saints in Greeting:
Beloved brethren, we have whereof to congratulate you at the present time, as we have the opportunity from day to day to witness the progress of the building of the of the Lord in this , and which is and must be accomplished by the united exertions of the labors of the brethren who reside here, and the tithings and contributions of those who are scattered abroad in the different states.
In this glorious object the hearts of all the faithful are united, the hands of the laborer are made strong continually, and the purse strings of the more opulent are unloosed, from time to time, to supply those things which are necessary for upraising the stones of this noble edifice; and it may truly be said that the blessing of the Lord is upon his people; we have peace without, and love within the borders of our beautiful ;— beautiful, indeed, for situation, is ; the crown of the great valley of the , the joy of every honest heart.
Although all things are more prosperous, concerning the , than at any former period, yet the saints must not suppose that all is done, or that they can relax their exertions and the work go on. It is a great work that God has required of his people, and it will require long and unwearied diligence to accomplish it; and redoubled diligence will be necessary with all, to get the building inclosed before another winter, so that the joiner can be employed during the cold weather; and we would again call upon all the saints abroad to unite in making their deposites in banks known to be good and safe, and forward their certificates to the Trustee in Trust, as speedily as possible; when trusty men are not coming immediately to this place who can bring your offerings. All will want the privileges and blessings of the sanctuary, when it is completed; and all can have their wishes; but they can obtain them only by faithfulness and diligence in striving to build.
We praise our God for the liberality which has hitherto been manifested; many have given more than was required of them, many have given their all, but they have done it cheerfully; they have done it voluntarily; and they shall have a great reward; for the blessings of heaven, and earth shall be multipliied unto such; even the blessings of that priesthood which hath neither beginning of days nor end of life. While there are those who of their abundance have built unto themselves fine houses, and who ride in carriages and on horseback, and regale themselves with the good things of the land, and at the same time they have left the untouched, or, if touched at all, have touched it so lightly as scarce to leave the print of their little finger: their reward will be according to their deeds, and unless they speedily repent, and come up with their abundance to the help of the Lord, they will find in the end that they have no part nor lot in this matter; their gold and silver will become cankered, their garments moth eaten, and they will perish in their own slothfulness and idolatry, leaving none to mourn their absence.
But brethren the will be built. There are hundreds and thousands who stand ready to sacrifice the last farthing they possess on earth, rather than have the building of the delayed, and while this spirit prevails no power beneath the heavens can hinder its progress: but we desire you all to help with the ability which God has given you, that you may all share the blessings which will distill from heaven to earth through this consecrated channel.
This is not all. It will be in vain for us to build a place where the son of man may lay his head, and leave the cries of the widow and the fatherless, unheard by us, ascending up to the orphan’s God, and widow’s friend. It is in vain we cry Lord, Lord, and do not the things our Lord hath commanded; to visit the widow, the fatherless, the sick, the lame, the blind, the destitute, and minister to their necessities; and it is but reasonable that such cases should be found among a people who have but recently escaped the fury of a relentless mob on the one hand, and gathered from the half starved population of the scattered nations on the other. [p. ]