Revelation, 30 August 1831 [D&C 63]

  • Source Note
  • Historical Introduction

Document Transcript

Hearken O ye people and open your hearts and give ear from afar and listen you that call yourselves the people of the Lord & hear the word of the Lord & his will concerning you yea verily I say hear the word of him whose anger is kindled against you <​the​> wicked & rebellious who willeth to take even them whom he will take & preserveth in life them whom he will preserve who buildeth up at his own will & pleasure & destroyeth when he please & is able to cast the soul down to hell. Behold I the Lord uttereth my voice & <​&​> it shall be obeyed wherefore verily I say let the wicked take heed & let the rebellious fear & tremble & let the unbelieving hold their lips for the day of wrath shall come upon them as a whirlwind & all flesh shall know that I am God. And he that seeketh signs shall see signs but not unto salvation Verily I say unto you There are those among you who seeketh signs & there has been such even from the beginning But behold faith cometh not by signs but signs follow those that believe yea signs cometh by faith not by the will of men nor as they please but by the will of God yea signs cometh by faith unto mighty works for without faith no man pleaseth God & with whom God is angry he is not well pleased wherefore unto such he sheweth no signs only in wrath unto their condemnation Wherefore I the Lord am not well pleased with those among you who have sought after signs & wonders for faith & not for the good of men unto my glory Nevertheless I gave & many have turned away from my commandments & have not kept them There were among you adulterers & adulteresses some of whom have turned away from you & others remain with you that hereafter shall be revealed let such be aware & repent speedily lest judgements shall come upon them as a snare & their folly shall be made manifest & their works shall follow them in the eyes of the people & verily I say unto you as I have said before he that looketh on a woman to lust after her or if any shall commit adultry in his heart they shall not have the spirit but shall deny the faith & shall fear Wherefore I the Lord have said that the fearful & the unbelieving & all liars & whoso<​ever​> loveth & maketh a lie & the whoarmunger <​& the​> sorcerer should have their part in that lake which burneth with fire & brimstone which is the second death Verily I say <​that​> they shall not have part in the first resurrection And now behold I the Lord saith unto you that ye are not justified because of these things are among you nevertheless he that endureth in faith & doeth my will the same shall overcome & shall receive an inheritance upon the Earth when the day of transfiguration shall come when the earth shall be transfigured even according to the pattern which was shown unto mine apostles upon the mount of which account the fulness ye have not yet received. And now verily I say unto you that as I said that I would make known my will unto you behold I will make it known unto you not by the way of commandment for their are many who observe not to keep my commandments but unto him that keepeth my commandments I will give the mysteries of my Kingdom & the same shall be in him a well of <​living​> water springing up unto everlasting life And now behold this is the will of the Lord your God concerning his saints that they should assemble themselves together unto the land of not in haste lest there should be confusion which bringeth pestilence Behold the land of Zion I the Lord holdeth it in mine own hands nevertheless I the Lord rendereth unto Cezar the things which are Cezars Wherefore I the Lord willeth that you should purchase the lands that you may have advantage of the world that you may have claim on the world that they may not be stired up unto anger for satan putteth it into their hearts to anger & to the shedding of blood Wherefore the land of Zion shall not be obtained but by purchase or by blood otherwise there is none inheritance for you & if by purchased behold ye you are blessed & if by blood as ye are forbidden to shed blood lo your enemies are upon you & ye shall be scourged from city to city & from Synagogue to synagogue & but few shall stand to receive an inheritance I the Lord am angry with the wicked I am holding my spirit from the inhabitants of the earth I have sworn in my wrath & decreed wars upon the face of the earth & the wicked shall slay the wicked & fear shall come upon every man & the Saints also shall hardly escape [p. [1]] nevertheless I the Lord am with them & will come down in Heaven from the presence of God & consume the wicked with unquenchable fire & behold this is not yet but by & by Wherefore seeing that I the Lord have decreed all these things upon the face of the earth I willeth that my saints should be assembled upon the land of & that every man should take righteousness in his hands & faithfulness upon his loins & lift a warning voice unto the inhabitants of the earth & declare both by word & by flight that desolation shall come upon the wicked Wherefore let my Desiples in arrange their temporal concerns which dwell upon this farm let my servant who has the care thereof dispose of the land that he may be prepared in the coming spring to take his journey up unto the land of Zion with those that dwell upon the face thereof excepting those whom I shall reserve unto myself that shall not go until I shall command them & let all the moneys which can be spared (it mattereth not unto me whether it be little or much) sent up unto the land of Zion unto them whom I have appointed to receive. Behold I the Lord will give unto my servant Joseph power that he shall be enabled to descern by the spirit those who shall go up unto the land of & those of my Desiples that shall tarry Let my servant retain the his or in other words the yet for a little season nevertheless let him impart all the money which he can impart to be sent up unto the land of behold these things are in his own hands let him do according to wisdom verily I say let him be as an agent unto the Desiples that shall tarry & let him be ordained unto this power & now speedily go with <​visit​> the churches expounding these things unto them with my servant behold this is my <​will​> with obtaining moneys even as I have directed he that is faithful & endureth shall overcome the world he that sendeth up treasures unto the land of shall receive an in this world & his works shall follow him & also a reward in the world to come yea & blessed are the dead that die in the Lord from henceforth when the Lord shall come & old things shall pass away & all things become new they shall rise from the dead & shall not die & shall receive an inheritance before the Lord in the Holy City & he that liveth when the Lord shall come & have kept the faith blessed is he nevertheless it is appointed unto him to die at the age of man Wherefore children shall grow up until they become old. Old men shall die but they shall not sleep in the dust but they shall be changed in the twinkling of an eye Wherefore for this cause preached the apostles unto the world the resurrection of the dead these things are the things that ye must look for & speeking after the manner of the Lord they are now nigh at hand & in a time to come even in the day of the coming of the Son of man & until that hour there will be foolish virgins among the wise & & at that hour cometh an entire separation of the righteous & the wicked & in that day will I send mine angels & pluck out the wicked & cast into unquenchable fire And now <​behold​> verily I say unto you I the Lord am not pleased with my servant he exaulted himself in his heart & received not counsel but grieved the spirit Wherefore his writing is not acceptable unto the Lord & he shall make another & if the Lord receive it not behold he standeth no longer in the office which he hath appointed him And again verily I say unto you let those who desire in their hearts in meekness to warn sinners to repentance let them be ordained unto this power for this is a day of warning & not a day of many worlds words for I the Lord am not to be mocked in the last days Behold I am from above & my power lieth beneath I am over all & in all & through all & searcheth all things & the days cometh that all things shall be subject unto me. Behold I am Alpha & Omega even Jesus Christ Wherefore let all men be ware how they take my name in their lips for behold verily I say that many there be who are under this condemnation who useth the name of the Lord & useth it in vain having not authority Wherefore let the repent of their sins & I the Lord with <​will​> own them otherwise they shall be cut off. Remember that that cometh which cometh from above is sacred & must be spoken with care & by constraint of the spirit & in this there is no condemnation [p. [2]] and ye receive the spirit through prayer wherefore without this there remaineth condemnation. Let my servants Joseph & seek them a home as they are led taught through the spirit prayer by the spirit these things remain to overcome through patience that such may receive a more exceeding & eternal weight of glory otherwise a greater condemnation Amen.
Given by Joseph the in August 31, 1831 and written by —— [p. [3]]


  1. 1

    See Isaiah 49:26; and Book of Mormon, 1830 ed., 56, 75 [1 Nephi 21:26; 2 Nephi 6:18].  

  2. 2

    A March 1831 revelation similarly warned against an individual asking “for a sign” in order to “consume it upon his lusts.” (Revelation, ca. 8 Mar. 1831–A [D&C 46:9]; see also Matthew 12:38–39; Mark 8:11–12; and Luke 11:16, 29.)  

  3. 3

    See Mark 16:17; Book of Mormon, 1830 ed., 537, 547 [Mormon 9:24; Ether 4:18]; and Revelation, 1 Aug. 1831 [D&C 58:64].  

  4. 4

    A July 1830 revelation instructed JS to “require not Miracles except I shall command you.” (Revelation, July 1830–A [D&C 24:13].)  

  5. 5

    See Hebrews 11:6.  

  6. 6

    See 2 Timothy 3:8–9.  

  7. 7

    See Matthew 5:28; Book of Mormon, 1830 ed., 481 [3 Nephi 12:28]; and Revelation, 9 Feb. 1831 [D&C 42:23].  

  8. 8

    See Revelation 21:8; 22:14–15.  

  9. 9

    This passage seems to promise further information on transfiguration. The only extant record of such comes from JS’s Bible revision. When JS revised Matthew 17:1–13, sometime between 7 April and 19 June 1831, he added clarifying information about the identity and mission of Elias, who appeared on the mount at the time that Christ was transfigured. (Faulring et al., Joseph Smith’s New Translation of the Bible, 66; New Testament Revision 1, pp. 41–42 [Joseph Smith Translation, Matthew 17:8–14].)  

    Faulring, Scott H., Kent P. Jackson, and Robert J. Matthews, eds. Joseph Smith’s New Translation of the Bible: Original Manuscripts. Provo, UT: Religious Studies Center, Brigham Young University, 2004.

    New Testament Revision 1 / “A Translation of the New Testament Translated by the Power of God,” 1831. CCLA. Also available in Scott H. Faulring, Kent P. Jackson, and Robert J. Matthews, eds., Joseph Smith’s New Translation of the Bible: Original Manuscripts (Provo, UT: Religious Studies Center, Brigham Young University, 2004), 153–228.

  10. 10

    See John 4:10–14.  

  11. 11

    See Revelation, 7 May 1831 [D&C 49:25]; and Revelation, 13 Aug. 1831 [D&C 62:4].  

  12. 12

    According to Webster’s 1828 dictionary, “pestilence” denotes not only infectious disease but also “corruption or moral disease destructive to happiness.” (“Pestilence,” in American Dictionary [1828].)  

    An American Dictionary of the English Language: Intended to Exhibit, I. the Origin, Affinities and Primary Signification of English Words, as far as They Have Been Ascertained. . . . Edited by Noah Webster. New York: S. Converse, 1828.

  13. 13

    See Luke 20:25.  

  14. 14

    See Revelation, 20 July 1831 [D&C 57:4–5]; and Revelation, 1 Aug. 1831 [D&C 58:52].  

  15. 15

    See Revelation, 1 Aug. 1831 [D&C 58:53].  

  16. 16

    A March 1831 revelation explained that Zion would be a “City of refuge,” protecting those living therein, who would “be the only people that shall not be at war one with another.” (Revelation, ca. 7 Mar. 1831 [D&C 45:66, 69].)  

  17. 17

    See Matthew 3:12; and Luke 3:17.  

  18. 18

    See Isaiah 11:5; and Book of Mormon, 1830 ed., 98, 117 [2 Nephi 21:5; 30:11].  

  19. 19

    The Morley farm.  

  20. 20

    Before leaving for Missouri in June 1831, Isaac Morley gave his brother-in-law Titus Billings power of attorney over his farm. Billings finalized the sale of portions of Morley’s farm in October 1831 while Morley remained in Missouri. (Geauga Co., OH, Deed Records, 1795–1921, vol. 14, pp. 583–584; vol. 15, pp. 492–494, microfilms 20,235 and 20,236, U.S. and Canada Record Collection, FHL; see also Minute Book 2, 25–26 Oct. 1831; and Edward Partridge, Independence, MO, to Lydia Clisbee Partridge, 5–7 Aug. 1831, Edward Partridge, Letters, 1831–1835, CHL.)  

    U.S. and Canada Record Collection. FHL.

    Partridge, Edward. Letters, 1831–1835. CHL. MS 23154.

  21. 21

    Three revelations dictated consecutively in August appear to be the only others that contain the phrase “it mattereth not unto me.” (Revelation, 8 Aug. 1831 [D&C 60:5]; Revelation, 12 Aug. 1831 [D&C 61:22]; Revelation, 13 Aug. 1831 [D&C 62:5].)  

  22. 22

    As assigned in a July 1831 revelation, Edward Partridge, bishop in Zion, and Sidney Gilbert, agent to the church, were responsible for receiving money and making land purchases in Missouri. (Revelation, 20 July 1831 [D&C 57:6–7].)  

  23. 23

    An earlier revelation in August indicated that not all elders were to migrate to Missouri at once, stating that some were not to receive their inheritance in Zion for many years. This same revelation also indicated that conferences of elders would help regulate who moved to Missouri. Here, JS receives instruction that he should decide who will go and who will stay in Kirtland, Ohio. Therefore, at least two parties—JS and conferences of elders—had authority to make such decisions. The day after this revelation was dictated, JS dictated another “by the voice of the Spirit,” indicating that John Burk, David Elliott, and Erastus Babbitt should “Journey this fall to the land of Zion.” A few months later, Reynolds Cahoon appeared before a conference of elders to receive direction on whether to go or stay. (Revelation, 1 Aug. 1831 [D&C 58:44]; Revelation, 31 Aug. 1831; Minutes, 11 Nov. 1831.)  

  24. 24

    The N. K. Whitney & Co. white store (so named for its color). Whitney established a store in Kirtland, Ohio, by 1824 (known as the red store) and built another store in 1827 (the white store), after which the red store was used as a residence. By the beginning of 1827, he had partnered with Sidney Gilbert to form N. K. Whitney & Co. (Staker, Hearken, O Ye People, 209, 214, 217–218.)  

    Staker, Mark L. Hearken, O Ye People: The Historical Setting of Joseph Smith’s Ohio Revelations. Salt Lake City: Greg Kofford Books, 2009.

  25. 25

    In company with Oliver Cowdery in September 1831, Whitney raised money from other church members to send to Missouri. He also partnered with Sidney Gilbert to establish a store in Missouri in 1832 under the name Gilbert & Whitney. (Whitmer, History, 37; Jackson Co., MO, Deed Records, 1827–1909, vol. B, pp. 32–33, 20 Feb. 1832, microfilm 1,017,978, U.S. and Canada Record Collection, FHL; Eakin and Eakin, Jackson County Missouri Court Minutes Book 1, 144, 196.)  

    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.

  26. 26

    A 1 August 1831 revelation declared, “let there be an agent appointed by the voice of the Church.” This direction apparently applied to the church in Ohio since Sidney Gilbert had already been appointed an agent for Missouri. Whitney was ordained an “agent unto the Disciples” in Ohio at a conference in Kirtland on 1 September 1831 and in that role gathered money to send to Missouri. (Revelation, 1 Aug. 1831 [D&C 58:49, 51]; Minutes, 1 Sept. 1831; see also Whitmer, History, 37.)  

  27. 27

    According to Sidney Rigdon, Cowdery and Whitney would read to the Saints the revelations touching on the “way and means of possessing” the land of Zion as they visited the churches. John Whitmer later recorded that “the disciples truly opened their hearts” to Cowdery and Whitney, enabling them to obtain money “for the purpose of buying lands for the Saints according to commandments.” (Whitmer, History, 36–37.)  

  28. 28

    See Revelation 14:13.  

  29. 29

    See Book of Mormon, 1830 ed., 566–567 [Ether 13:8–9]; and Revelation, Sept. 1830–A [D&C 29:22–24].  

  30. 30

    A 7 August 1831 revelation explained that the faithful who died in Zion would “receive a crown in the mansions of my Father.” (Revelation, 7 Aug. 1831 [D&C 59:2].)  

  31. 31

    See Isaiah 65:20; and Revelation, ca. 7 Mar. 1831 [D&C 45:58–59].  

  32. 32

    See 1 Corinthians 15:51–52; Book of Mormon, 1830 ed., 510 [3 Nephi 28:8]; and Revelation, Feb. 1831–A [D&C 43:32].  

  33. 33

    See Matthew 25:1–13.  

  34. 34

    See Revelation, ca. 7 Mar. 1831 [D&C 45:68–71].  

  35. 35

    See Matthew 13:30; and Revelation, 2 Jan. 1831 [D&C 38:12].  

  36. 36

    Ezra Booth, who had become disaffected from the church by this time, implied that Rigdon had exaggerated the character of the land in his first draft of the description of Zion, which a 1 August 1831 revelation had commanded him to write. According to Booth, Rigdon’s description differed markedly from one that Edward Partridge had composed. In 1844, Jedediah M. Grant, who was not acquainted with Rigdon in 1831, declared that “men of the strictest veracity” had told him that Rigdon’s original draft was “extravagant in [its] description of the upper country.” According to Grant, Rigdon “expatiated on the beauties of Jackson county in such a profuse manner, that fears were entertained by the brethren that it would cause the saints from the east to apostatize, as soon as they should arrive, not finding things as set forth by Elder R.” (Ezra Booth, “Mormonism—No. VII,” Ohio Star [Ravenna], 24 Nov. 1831, [1]; Grant, Collection of Facts, [4], 7.)  

    Ohio Star. Ravenna. 1830–1854.

  37. 37

    A January 1831 revelation counseled the elders to “let your preaching be the warning voice evry man to his Neighbour in mildness & in meekness.” (Revelation, 2 Jan. 1831 [D&C 38:41].)  

  38. 38

    See Book of Mormon, 1830 ed., 585 [Moroni 9:26].  

  39. 39

    These titles for Jesus Christ were used in the Bible, the Book of Mormon, and earlier JS revelations. (See, for example, Revelation 1:8, 11; Book of Mormon, 1830 ed., 473–474 [3 Nephi 9:18]; and Revelation, ca. Summer 1829 [D&C 19:1].)  

  40. 40

    Since JS was living on the Morley farm (which the revelation instructed should be sold), he needed to find a new residence.  

  41. 41

    See 2 Corinthians 4:17.