The weather being warm, and the people generally of the laboring
class, I presume are the cause of a rather late attendance at meeting
There are peculiarities connected with our duties, that make them
differ from the duties of almost every other community. Other
communities have gold and silver to aid them, in building, in
planting, in gathering, and in all the different avocations of life;
but this people have to accomplish all they do accomplish, by the bone
and sinew alone, which the Almighty has given them; and where it is
constantly employed, it has an effect upon the bank more or less; not,
however, that the specie is exhausted, or the bills depreciated in
value, but it exhibits a feature in our history which has been
frequently exhibited, and is, as it has been, peculiar to this
The world, and the inhabitants thereof, are fluctuating; not only the
inhabitants, but the elements that surround the earth are frequently
in a fluctuating condition. I have often listened, with a great deal
of attention and interest, to the explanations given of the beauties
and of the uniformity of nature, contrasted with the fluctuations and
changes of men, of nations, of kingdoms, and of countries.
Man is sometimes represented as if he were the only fluctuating and
changeable being in existence; but when I contrast in my thoughts the
revolutions of nations, with the revolutions and changes that have
taken place upon the face of our globe, I am sometimes led to
the conclusion that the elements change as often as the inhabitants
that dwell upon the earth.
We see at one time, the earth shaken, as it were, from center to
circumference; we hear the sound of bellowing earthquakes; we see the
smoke of the towering mountains, and the yawning crater belching forth
its boiling lava; indeed every mountain, valley and dell, the rivers,
and the ocean into which they empty their waters, and all the elements
with which we are surrounded, exhibit one constant scene of change,
one constant scene of variety, and one constant scene of commotion.
We cannot say, "Man, thou art the only changeable creature, the only
changeable substance we gaze upon." But the ocean, and all the waters
communicating therewith; the earth, with its ten thousand lofty
mountains, verdant valleys, and extended plains; exhibit to our view a
variety of changes that have been, and that we may expect will
continue to be, from this time forth.
Consequently, when we see man excited to follow any avocation in life,
whether it be for gold, silver, or other precious ores, for which he
leaves his all, acts unwisely and inconsistently, sacrificing his
home, his family, and everything dear and near to him, we can exclaim,
"This wild career of man is not the only wildness exhibited in
If you refer back to the earliest ages, and trace the history of the
world, where can you find uniformity in nature's works? If you can
find a uniformity at any time in the earth, the sea, the air, or in
the elements, pray tell me when it was.
Was it when our first parents were cast out of the Garden of Eden,
when it became desecrated by sin; or when old father Noah rode safely
over the mighty deep, protected by the arm of Jehovah, while every
other living thing sank in the depths of a watery grave? Was it when
Abel rose up to offer in sacrifice the first fruits of his flock to
the Most High God, and Cain his brother rose up and murdered, or
sacrificed him for doing so? Was that a day of uniformity? Were the
elements calm and composed? Did nature exhibit a serene and smooth
You pass further down the lapse of time, from the days of our earliest
progenitors, until the earth was deluged in water, and the lofty
summits were submerged in the raging element. After the waters
subside, and the inhabitants of the earth begin to increase and go
forth upon its face, you soon discover a change in them and in the
If you look for uniformity in man, was it when the descendants of Noah
sought to build a great tower, that they might, as they thought, climb
up to where their Father in Heaven lived, and thus try to defy His
power, should He again bring a flood of water to deluge the earth? Was
that the age, when people studied to know the purposes of a righteous
Pass on from that day, until you come to the illustrious Abraham, the
father of the faithful, and ask yourselves if his course was very
uniform, and if the course of the inhabitants of the earth around him
was very uniform, and something to be admired. You see him rushing
forth to war. Not only did he sally out to the field to fight with
the weapons of death in his hands, but we might take a glance at his
course in the domestic circle. Was it uniform in Sarah and Hagar to
quarrel with each other, and when Hagar had to be banished with her
son Ishmael? Even in the domestic circle of the great Patriarch, we
discover nature was not uniform. Was it uniform when the cry of the banished Hagar ascended to heaven, and brought an angel to
give drink to the young urchin who was dying of thirst under one of
If you pass on through the line of his descendants you find the same
lack of uniformity. How sublime the quarrel that took place between
Joseph and his brethren! What remarkable contentions existed among
them. Look at the old Patriarch Jacob in his family circle, and you
see him goaded with thorns of grief because of his family broils. Do
we find the elements around that family very calm, pacific, uniform,
serene, angelic, and Godlike? How calm they were when one of his
wives, in order to get her rights, had to purchase her husband with
You discover a scene of vexatious broils in the domestic circle;
though they were not at war with surrounding nations, yet the elements
were at war in the very center of that venerable house.
Such, then, were the scenes in early ages among those righteous, pure,
holy, just, and noble Patriarchs, who conversed with God, wrestled
with angels, obtained promises, and coped with high heaven.
If you pass on and seek to find uniformity, beauty, and sublimity,
will you find it when the Israelites were bondmen in Egypt, when they
were compelled by hard task masters to gather straw and make bricks
for a living?
If you should pass on to the time the illustrious meek man of God,
Moses, was sent to them, how much uniformity do you discover when he
led them to the Red Sea, and a mighty host from Egypt around them
threatening their destruction, but the sea opened and let them through
dry shod, and the mountains skipped like rams, and the little hills
like lambs? Was this a scene where we may look for uniformity? Or,
after he led them forth to Sinai, where the voice of God, the roaring
thunder, and vivid lightning were exhibited. While Moses was upon the
mount conversing with the Most High God, Aaron took the gold offered
to him by the people, and made a calf for Israel to worship, and they
said, "These be thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the
land of Egypt." Was there any sublimity, glory, and loyalty to God in
this? When Moses descended from the mountain, was everything calm and
peaceable, and uniform? No! The Israelites had made a golden calf, and
were dancing round the god they had made out of their earrings and
jewelry they had pilfered from the Egyptians—they had stolen by
revelation, by divine direction; they were having a grand dance around
this molten calf, when Moses in his anger broke the tables. Can you
find any uniformity, any beauty, any order reigning in the house of
Pass on, and look at affairs in the days of Solomon—how uniform that
mighty king was in his course, with his seven hundred wives, and a
legion of concubines. How uniform he was in his passions and feelings.
He was not contented with the fair daughters of Israel, but the queen
of Sheba, and the women of nations afar off, captivated this wise
king—by whom he was led astray, and desecrated the altars of God, the
sanctuaries of Israel, and the Urim and Thummim, by introducing the
idolatrous worship of the strange gods of his wives and concubines.
There was also David, the father of Solomon, and the man after God's
own heart. Though his wives were many, and his family numerous, yet he
could not cast his eyes out of a window, and see a beautiful woman in
a bath, without lusting after her. His heart was so susceptible of
love, that he conceived the murder of her husband to possess her, and
caused his victim to be stationed in the front of the battle
where he would be sure to be slain. This was the kind of sublimity the
men of God exhibited anciently.
Look at the difficulties that existed between Israel and the Prophets;
look at the murders, devastation, destruction, altars smoking with
blood, cities wrapped in flame, and thousands and tens of thousands
mantled in death upon the bloodstained earth by contending armies;
and ask yourselves if that is the time to look for uniformity.
Was it to be found in the days of Alexander the Great, when he
conquered the world, and spilled rivers of blood to attain his
purpose? Was it to be found among the Romans, or among the Medes and
Persians? Shall we look to any of the ancient nations for uniformity.
But we will pass by these dark ages, and come down to the interesting
time when the Son of God unfolded the glorious theme of the Gospel of
peace, of matchless glory, of matchless love; when the babe of
Bethlehem was born; when the sun of righteousness appeared with
healing in his wings; and when beauty, and glory, and sublimity were
displayed in their grandeur, full bloom and glory.
You do not wish us to understand, that that was the time when Herod
put forth his hand to put to death the young children under a certain
age, in hopes to kill the young child Jesus. Is this the beauty of
that age—the sublimity to which you call our attention—when the
reigning king put to death thousands of helpless children, drenching
the earth with their innocent blood?
When the babe Jesus returns from Egypt, he exclaims of himself, "The
foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests, but the Son of
man hath not where to lay his head." Even in that age, look at the
commotion, the turmoil, the strife, and the difficulties that existed.
Were sublimity, uniformity, and beauty seen at the time when the King
of righteousness, the anointed of God, was carried up unto an
exceeding high mountain by Lucifer, who showed him the kingdoms of
the world, and the glory of them, saying, "All these things will I
give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me." Was that
Suppose a Prophet should arise now, and proclaim to the world he is a
Prophet of God, and Lucifer should take him by the coat collar, or by
the hair of the head, and escort him to the top of a high pinnacle,
and hold him there, would they believe he was a Prophet? The
uniformity of that age is thus exhibited, however, by the writers of
the New Testament.
Again we find it exhibited when a legion of devils was cast out of a
man, and entered into a herd of swine, causing them to run down a
steep place into the sea, where they were drowned. These are some of
the characteristic features of the age in which Christ and his
If you pass on to the time when Jesus Christ the Son of God was put to
death, when they mocked him, spit upon him, placed a crown of thorns
upon his head, and smote him upon the cheek, saying, "Prophesy." Is
that the time for us to look for uniformity? If you wait until they
arraign him before an earthly tribunal, condemn, and put him to death,
and place him in the tomb, do you there look for beauty and
uniformity? What do you see? A host of soldiers guarding the mouth of
the tomb to keep his disciples from stealing his dead body; they did
not only think they would steal his dead body, but that they would lie
about it afterwards, and say he had risen from the dead, and palm an
imposition upon that age of the world. These are some of the
sublimities of the Christian religion in the days of its Founder; and
the confidence the multitude had in the advocates of that religion.
But if you still wait until he who was once the babe in Bethlehem,
bursts the barriers of the tomb, and approaches and speaks to his
disciples, and commissions them to preach his Gospel, beginning at
Jerusalem, what do you see? Watch the movements of the disciples. The
Son of God told them to wait the appointed time at Jerusalem. And when
the Holy Ghost came upon them, and they began to speak by the
inspiration and power thereof, the multitude cried out, "These men are
full of new wine." This was the uniform testimony of the multitude.
But if you will notice the assembly preached to on that occasion,
there were some few who gave a contrary testimony. But what were a
few thousands, compared to the vast number then assembled? In some
small hamlet a few thousands of people might be a decided majority,
and perhaps take in all to baptize so many. But a few thousands in
comparison with the great multitude that dwelt in Jerusalem, was only
like one grain of sand in comparison to a handful. The grand majority
of the mass governs; the uniform testimony of the million was, that
they were drunk, and of course you are to believe according to the
greatest amount of testimony, are you not? Then if you arraign those
disciples before the grand tribunals of the nations, the great
majority of the multitude would say they were drunk; but if only a
flew thousands say they were not, which are you to believe? Where then
is the uniformity in this testimony? Look at the discrepancy, and the
array of testimony against the disciples. It is certainly overwhelming
in its nature.
But if you look still further, and seek to find uniformity in that age
of the world, follow the disciples; when they left Jerusalem to go
forth with the proclamation of the Gospel, and we find wherever they
went, they were considered insane, mad, and possessed of devils. It
was said of Jesus their master, he was leagued with Beelzebub, the
prince of the devils. And, said the Savior, "If they have called the
master of the house Beelzebub, how much more shall they call them of
his household?" Wherever they went, then, they were called Nazarites,
and Christians was an odious name in that age. They were hooted at by
the Jews, pointed at by the Gentiles, and scoffed at by the
world; if you seek for testimony in that age
of the world, was it for or against them?
Pass on still further in their history, and look at their course and
conduct, if you will believe the writers that lived in that age. What
does old Celsus say, who was a physician in the first century, whose
medical works are esteemed very highly at the present time. His works
on theology were burned with fire by the Catholics, they were so
shocked at what they called their impiety. Celsus was a heathen
philosopher; and what does he say upon the subject of Christ and his
Apostles, and their belief? He says, "The grand reason why the
Gentiles and philosophers of his school persecuted Jesus Christ, was,
because he had so many wives; there were Elizabeth, and Mary, and a
host of others that followed him." After Jesus went from the stage of
action, the Apostles followed the example of their master. For
instance, John the beloved disciple, writes in his second Epistle,
"Unto the elect lady and her children, whom I love in the truth."
Again, he says, "Having many things to write unto you (or
communicate), I would not write with paper and ink: but I trust to
come unto you, and speak face to face, that our joy may be
full." Again—"The children of thy elect sister greet thee." This
ancient philosopher says they were both John's wives. Paul says, "Mine
answer to them that do examine me is this ...
Have we not power to lead about a sister, a wife, as well as other
apostles, and as the brethren of the Lord, and Cephas." He, according
to Celsus, had a numerous train of wives.
The grand reason of the burst of public sentiment in anathemas upon
Christ and his disciples, causing his crucifixion, was evidently based
upon polygamy, according to the testimony of the philosophers who rose
in that age. A belief in the doctrine of a plurality of wives caused
the persecution of Jesus and his followers. We might almost think they
But if you pass on in their history to seek for uniformity and beauty,
you will find some grand flare-ups among them. Look, for instance, at
Paul and Peter, disputing and quarrelling with each other; and Paul
and Barnabas contending, and parting asunder with angry feelings.
"When Peter came to Antioch," says Paul, "I withstood him to the face,
because he was to be blamed," &c. Paul does not gain much credit with
the Mormons for taking this course. We know he had no right to rebuke
Peter; but some man said he was like Almon Babbit, he wanted to boast
of rebuking Peter. He thought it was a feather in his cap because he
coped with Peter and rebuked him. Had that affair come before a
"Mormon" tribunal, they would have decided in favor of Peter and
against Paul. We believe when Paul rebuked Peter, he had in him a
spirit of rebellion, and was decidedly wrong in rebelling against the
man who held the keys of the kingdom of God on the earth.
But I will proceed, and I wish you to understand that I am only just
giving you a rap here and there; you know spiritual rappings are quite
common in this day.
If you will pass along in the days of the Apostles, after awhile you
see them thrust into cauldrons of oil, crucified with their heads
downwards, and persecuted in various ways until they became extinct.
After awhile, you have the beauty, the sublimity of Catholicism. Look
at the old mother, seated upon a scarlet-colored beast, boxing the
ears of her daughters; and the Church of England in turn boxing the
ears of the old mother, assisted by her other numerous offspring, and
then mark the bitter contentions and bloody feuds among the children!
O, have they not had a sublime time—a beautiful dish of suckertash.
What a uniform course they have taken!
But are the inhabitants of the earth the only portion of nature that
is not uniform? No.
Look at the bellowing earthquake, uprooting the mountains and
precipitating them from their beds, and rending the rocks with
violence, leaving the trembling earth in a state of horrible
devastation; and then for men to teach me about the uniformity of
nature's course, and that man is the only being in nature that is
uniform, is folly. Talk not to me about the uniformity of nature;
where is it to be found upon this earth, among men, in the mountains,
among the valleys, in the ocean, or among the streams that water the
Before you censure my views upon this subject, look at mother earth,
at the ocean, at the rocks, at the planets that bespangle the blue
vault of heaven; in short, at nature in all her works, which you will
find stamped with the insignia of continual change. But pass on.
You look and you see the Church, as it were, driven from the earth;
you see it left without a Prophet, without a Seer, without Apostles,
and without the voice of inspira tion. You hear the professed
ministers of Christ teaching the benighted multitude, that the day
when angels administer to men has ceased; that the sacred Urim and
Thummim is lost; that the holy Priesthood is no longer needed, and the
sacred place where they offered sacrifices for Israel is gone, all are
In this way, century after century passed away; nation rose against
nation, and kingdom against kingdom; nations and kingdoms rose, and in
their turn fell in succession, to give place to others, while nature,
in her convulsive throes, shook the earth from center to
circumference. Pass on still, and do you look for uniformity?
But says one, "You Mormons tell us, that in the age in which we live
there is a work commenced on the earth that will entirely eclipse
every other dispensation, and usher in a day of righteousness,
overcome Lucifer the arch deceiver; a day wherein he is to be bound,
and thrust into the pit, and lose his power; when the earth will be
redeemed, and appear in her primeval bloom and beauty, and man shall
cease to war against his fellow man; when the convulsions of the earth
shall cease—the earthquake cease to bellow, the thunder cease to roar,
and the lightning cease to become destructive, and to mar the face of
nature, spreading terror and dismay among animated beings; when the
earth and all nature shall become calm and tranquil, and the glory of
God shall be among men."
"Why bless me, with the exception of a few points," say statesmen,
"your society has decidedly changed from what it was in the days of
Mr. Smith. Because of the peculiar traits of his character, it could
not have possibly existed under his government; we are glad to see the
decided improvement that has been made since his death; and under the
administration of Mr. Young." This is their language. They suppose
that the "Mormons" have turned a somerset, have apostatized, and
altered their character and creed as a people. I always take great
pleasure in telling such honorable men, such wise men, that that which
they call "Mormonism" changeth not. It is the same now as in the days
"And do you Mormons in the Valley believe and advocate the same
doctrines that Joseph Smith did?"
Yes, sir, precisely, not one practical point of the religion has
changed; but we as a people may be fluctuating, but our religion
changeth not. You see some of our men want to go to California for
gold—they want to do this, and to do that; but the people generally
are right at home.
But you must look in the last days for a kingdom that in its
commencement will be the least of all, and is compared to the mustard
seed. If then it is the smallest of all kingdoms, we need not look for
a large church like the church of Rome, or the English church, but
like a mustard seed; look for that, and it will grow and become the
largest of all herbs, so that the birds of the air will shelter in it.
Says one, "I like it very well, if you did not gather together, and
suffer Brigham Young to lead you like one man."
In that consists the beauty of our religion; and he can wield us as a
people, like God does the armies of heaven. He can wield us to preach,
to pray, or to fight. We have everything spiritual, temporal, and
natural, as it should be. We believe it is just as much our religion
to talk about wheat, plowing, sowing, and gathering in at harvest
time, it is just as much our religion as anything connected with it.
"Pertaining to the Mormons away off in the Valley, they never will be
much anyhow," says one. They used to tell Joseph Smith he
could never accomplish anything, for he had neither money nor
friends. They tell us we cannot accomplish much, "for everybody says
you are crazy followers of Joe Smith, and believers in the Book of
Mormon; therefore what can you do?" We will do just as Jesus Christ
said the mustard seed would do. If you will read and learn what it
did, you will then know something about the future history of
"Mormonism." You will ascertain just what we will do.
"But do you really believe your Church is the kingdom Daniel spoke
of—the stone that should be hewn out of the mountain without hands?" I
suppose he might have said with hands just as well, for it is no
matter whether it was hewn out with or without; suffice it to say, the
result of it is what we see; no matter how it came out of the
mountain. What does the historian represent by that stone? Something
that would begin to roll, and smite the great image on its feet, and
roll forth until it should fill the whole earth. If you want to know
what "Mormonism" is, it is that which will roll forth until it fills
the whole earth.
Do we expect to find uniformity at this time? No sir; but we look for
mobs, and the very scum of hell to boil over. Do we look for a
privilege to fold our hands and sing lullaby baby, etc.? No; we expect
the rage of all hell to be aimed at us to overthrow us; we expect
mobs, and troubles with the Indians. The earth will be rent with
earthquakes, and a thousand thunders will utter their voices, and make
the ears of mortals tingle, and their hearts to fail within them; and
the voice of God will be heard, that will pierce the wicked to the
Do the Latter-day Saints expect to settle in peace? Mark you, your
peace has not come yet, for Lucifer is not yet bound; and while the
earth is fearfully convulsed because of the wickedness on its face,
the nations will gather themselves and make an effort to wrest the
kingdom from the Saints, and destroy them root and branch.
We are not coping with a few people here and there, but with the
world, with all the enemies of God, with all hell, and with the devil
and his host. That is "Mormonism."
You need not wonder that we raise stout boys in the mountains, for we
want children of the right blood; we do not want a scrubby breed here.
Men of "Mormon" blood are not afraid to die. The men that tremble, and
whose hearts go pit-a-pat because they have got to die, are not worth
a picayune. A man that refuses to walk up in the track, no matter what
comes, and steadily press forward, though there should be a lion in
the way, is not of "Mormon" grit. That was the grit Joseph Smith had;
and when he spoke, he spoke by the power of an endless Priesthood,
which was upon him; and that is the power by which Brigham speaks.
When he stood up in the majesty of his Priesthood, and rebuked the
judges here, I know some of our milk-and-water-folks thought all the
fat was in the fire. "Brother Brigham has gone rather too far; he
might have spoken a little milder than he did; I think it would have
been much better," &c. This was the language of some hearts; and I
feel to say, damn all such poor pussyism. When a man of God speaks,
let him speak what he pleases, and let all Israel say, Amen.
We expect to see and hear tell of earthquakes, and other mighty
convulsions in the earth, as it has been in former times; and if the
devil exerted his power in ancient days to destroy the work of God, so
he will in the latter days.
My exhortation to the Latter-day Saints is to keep the
commandments until truth shall prevail, the devil is bound, and
righteousness prevails; then watch for the Lord's coming, for you know
not the day nor the hour the Son of man cometh. Amen.
- Jedediah M. Grant