PRESIDENT B. YOUNG—As the people have now begun to assemble, I take the
liberty of making a few remarks. I request those who profess to be
Saints to exercise faith, and to endeavor to realize that the worship
of God is sacred, and beneficial to His people. It is true that we
have much to do of a temporal nature, as it is termed; many duties
pertaining to daily business and the affairs of this life devolve upon us.
This is necessarily the case, for if we are to build up the kingdom of
God, or establish Zion upon the earth, we have to labor with our
hands, plan with our minds, and devise ways and means to accomplish
There is a time for all these duties, and there is also a time to
serve the Lord by praying, preaching, singing, meditating, watching,
and fasting. Inasmuch as there is a time for all things, and as this
is the time that we have unitedly set apart for the express purpose of
worshipping the Lord, and of enjoying His Holy Spirit by calling in
our reflections pertaining to earthly things and objects, that we may
attend more immediately to a deep reflection and contemplation of
heavenly things, it is necessary for these my brethren, who
have accompanied me, to this place, to bring their thoughts to bear
upon the things that are present, and while we are here, to let Great
Salt Lake City remain where it is—don't bring it here.
Those who have left their families at home, and are away from their
houses, cattle, fields, flocks, herds, and other possessions, and also
all who have assembled from the different settlements in this county,
one and all, let all your affairs, those that you were obliged to
leave at home, stay where they are, and you stay here and worship the
In this way every person who has assembled here can feel to leave
their affairs and effects where they belong, and bring their minds to
bear upon the spiritual things of the kingdom of God. Then they can
have their minds enlightened by the Holy Spirit, and understand that
which will make them rejoice.
If those are our feelings and determinations, the candle of the Lord
will be lighted within our hearts, but if we keep our minds constantly
upon our families and effects, we shall be but little benefited by
coming here; this is true in regard to each one of us.
Where our hearts are, there our thoughts will be: and if our thoughts
are bound up in our earthly possessions, we had better remain at home
and attend to what we have most set our affections upon, and not
pretend to try to obtain happiness from any other source.
There is a time for all things, and this is the time for meeting
according to appointment. I am frequently requested to come out and
hold meetings among the brethren, but I do not recollect that we have
at any time appointed a three days' meeting here, though we have
previously been here and held one during two days. Much instruction
has to be given to enable us to overcome our passions, and to govern
and control our feelings and disposition.
Those Elders of Israel who have traveled and preached much have had a
good opportunity for experience, and have learned that they cannot,
figuratively speaking, take their families, friends, and goods with
them, or if they did, they accomplished but little good.
Those who go out to preach the Gospel and at the same time say, "My
poor wife and my poor children; and I shall be glad when my mission is
out," seldom do much good.
I think that the helpmate was designed to take care of the children,
house, and gardens, and see, as far as possible, that all is cared for
and preserved, as they anciently did. Some went out to war, but they
must always leave a few at home to stay with the goods, or whatever
they had to be taken care of.
Elders who have had an experience in this matter know whether they
carried their families in their feelings, or not; but it is our
privilege to train our feelings and dispositions, and to bring all
into subjection to the dictates of wisdom, even that wisdom which
proceedeth from our God.
When an Elder goes out to preach he ought not to let his mind be
filled with care for his family, only when he is praying about them;
and if they have lived by faith, all right; and if they have died
during his absence, all right; they are the Lord's; and say, "that He
gave them to me, it is all right; at the same time I would like to
have them, but blessed be the name of the Lord."
An Elder has possessions great or small, much or little, and instead
of carrying those possessions in his feelings he ought to leave them,
and say that they are the Lord's, and say, "I give my spirit and body
and what is committed into my hands, I am only a steward over
it; I yield its care to Him, since He sends me from my home so that I
cannot directly look after it." That man can go as free as the air,
and will feel that he has in his possession the Spirit of the Lord,
which should be considered of paramount importance.
When people assemble to worship they should leave their worldly cares
where they belong, then their minds are in a proper condition to
worship the Lord, to call upon Him in the name of Jesus, and to get
His Holy Spirit, that they may hear and understand things as they are
in eternity, and know how to comprehend the providences of our God.
This is the time for their minds to be open, to behold the invisible
things of God, that He reveals by His Spirit.
Again, suppose a family wish to assemble for prayer, what would be
orderly and proper? For the head of the family to call together his
wife, or wives, and children, except the children who are too small to
be kept quiet, and when he prays aloud, all present, who are old
enough to understand, should mentally repeat the words as they fall
from his lips; and why so? That all may be one.
If the people will ask in faith, they will receive, and let all
mentally ask precisely as does the one who is spokesman. Let all leave
the cares of their work behind them; let the kitchens take care of
themselves, and let the barns, the flocks and herds take care of
themselves, and if they are destroyed while you are praying, be able
to freely say, "Go, they are the Lord's; He gave them to me, and I
will worship Him; I will assemble my family and call upon the name of
By leaving business and the cares thereof where they belong, and
attending strictly to worship in its season, if not at first, you soon
will be united, and be able to bring every evil principle into
subjection. If all are bound up in this manner, don't you see that it
will make a mighty cord of faith?
I will now ask this congregation, how many of you thought of mentally
repeating my prayer as the words came to your ears? Did you realize
that the order of prayer required you to mentally follow the words of
the person who was praying? With us every one should mentally repeat
the same words and ask for the same things as does the one who leads
vocally, and let all say, amen. There are times and places when all
should vocally repeat the words spoken, but in our prayer meetings and
in our family circles let every heart be united with the one who takes
the lead by being mouth before the Lord, and let every person mentally
repeat the prayers, and all unite in whatever is asked for, and the
Lord will not withhold, but will give to such persons the things which
they ask for and rightly need.
In some denominations the hearers are accustomed to cry out, "Amen,
amen, amen, hallelujah, praise the Lord," &c., during the prayer
service, and immediately let their minds wander to the ends of the
earth. That is not the right way to pray, but let everyone throw off
care for their effects, for the Lord knows all about them; He protects
them while we are with them; and He is equally able to protect them
while we are absent; therefore, while engaged in worshipping Him, let
every heart be concentrated upon the subject before them. If this
congregation will take this course, I promise them that they will go
to their dwellings satisfied that the Almighty has been with us to
strengthen us; but if our minds are like the fool's eyes, we shall be
profited but little.
There are several here who will ad dress you, and suppose that
they should chastise us a little, do we not deserve it? Still, perhaps
some will complain of the speaker for chastising them, when perhaps
the first sentences which meet their eyes upon opening the Bible, will
convey the idea that every son and daughter whom the Lord loveth, He
chasteneth, but those who are not chastened are bastards and not sons.
Says one, "I am willing to be chastened, but I am not willing to have
that brother who has just come from England, or some other country,
chasten me, but if someone high in authority should do it, I would
kiss the rod and reverence the hand that gave it;" but the man who
will only receive chastening from the Lord Himself is not in a proper
state of mind before Him.
The Latter-day Saints have been chastened much and often. Many in this
congregation have had their corn and wheat stacks burned in
consequence of their religion, and have often been called to part with
their fathers and mothers, their wives and children, in consequence of
their religion. They have been chastened here and there, and perhaps
some may think we are being chastened now by the drought and insects.
I am willing to take it as a chastisement, and to learn that wisdom
and knowledge which I had not before it happened; and if every man
could realize and understand it, they would receive it as a prize and
as a lesson that would qualify them for future duties. Though our
chastisements are often hard to be borne, those who bear them
patiently, willingly, and submissively, will find that they yield the
Gospel fruits of righteousness insomuch that they will know how to be
Chastisement often comes upon the Saints of God on account of the
wicked, and that also will redound to the benefit of the humble and
faithful. If we receive chastisement for our sins, it will teach us to
forsake our sins, and become righteous, for we receive chastisement
because there is wickedness among us, and it is permitted to come to
prevent our turning from the path of duty, and is always designed for
our good. In all these things we have to acknowledge the hand of the
Lord, and to be passive in His hands, that we may receive the things
of His kingdom, that we may govern and control natural things, and all
those with whom we have to do, that those we preside over may become
eternal heirs of the celestial kingdom of our God.
It seems to be hard work for me to speak here this morning, and I will
give way and let the brethren occupy the remaining time this forenoon.
The ideas that I have laid before you, if you think of them and lay
them to heart, will do you good; and in our protracted meeting we may
be spiritually benefited, and receive joy and satisfaction. I feel to
bless you all the time, and pray that we may be prepared to build up
Zion and to inherit the fulness of the glory of God on the earth; this
is my prayer continually. May the Lord bless you. Amen.
PRESIDENT H. C. KIMBALL—We have heard what has been said by our
President, and in my feelings, though I may not always manifest it, I
am one with him in all my acts. Brethren and sisters, please to give
me your attention, and let your property take care of itself; that is
according to the instruction we have had today.
Brother Brigham is the President of the Church of Jesus Christ of
Latter-day Saints, and it is our duty to give strict heed to his
counsels and instructions. This is one thing which this people,
universally, individually, and collectively, have got to implant in their minds, and unless you get this lesson firmly settled
in your minds, he can never be of so much benefit to you as he
otherwise could, for as sure as you live and dwell here upon this
earth, wherever you are inclined to stop, to wait or to lie down, he
will leave you there; yes, he will leave you in that very spot, and
attend to some more important business, and in some future day he, or
some other one, will have to take you and teach you the first
principles of the doctrine of Christ, and again try to lead you into
the kingdom of God. He will not always dwell here in the flesh, that
is, in this mortal body.
I look at this people in the north and in the south, and watch their
progress in raising grain, building houses, &c., and I am pleased to
see what I behold; and although I do not see such progress as there
might be, still I see a great deal, and our extension and progress are
far beyond that of the world, under like circumstances. But we do not
make the progress that we would, if we strictly listened to the word
of God, as it proceeds from our President, our leader and Prophet.
Do we bring about that amount of restitution that we might? I say, no.
We should have the faith that we would have if we all carefully
listened to the instructions that have been already given us this day.
They are of great importance to all, and are as necessary to our
salvation as baptism for the remission of sins, or any other life
giving principle, they are necessary in order that we may become one.
How can we become one upon any other principle? It is impossible to be
of one heart and one mind, except we observe all the counsel given
from time to time.
I know it has been a practice with me, since I came to a knowledge of
the truth and of prayer, when kneeling with my brethren, to pray for
the things which they pray for; and we pray continually, "Our Father
who art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come here on
earth, and thy will be done as it is in heaven." Don't you all desire
this? Well, you may continue to desire from this time to the day of
your death, and you never will be gratified, except you individually
and collectively practice the things you are taught, and are one.
You have got to be one in all things. Are we all one in this
community? Is that the case in this place? You have not progressed as
much as those around you, nor as much as you would have done if you
had been diligent all the time, for then your station and faith, your
works before God, and power with Him would have been far greater than
they now are.
We have surpassed the world now; but if we were, and always had been,
of one heart and one mind in all our efforts to advance the interest
of the work of the Lord, we should have been far ahead of what we are
now, and could put to defiance death, hell, and the devil, and all who
are in opposition to this work; but we cannot now do all that we could
if we had kept all the commandments of the Lord, and been of one heart
and one mind.
What was there in the prayer this morning, but what everyone of you
desired more than gold, silver, and precious stones? Then pray for
those things, and practice accordingly.
As for the kingdom to come, and the will of God being done upon the
earth as it is done in heaven, it never will, except we practice and
carry out the purpose of the Almighty in our daily walk and
conversation, and seek to be of one heart and of one mind, and to do
unto others as we wish them to do unto us.
I wish that all who call themselves Saints would rise and shine, for
the light and glory of God are come upon us, therefore let us rise up
and keep His commandments, and serve Him and glorify His name.
As for any man's going into the celestial glory, or entering through
the straight gate into the celestial world, there never will a man or
woman go there, except they obey the celestial law which gives them
that privilege. I know it is the case, but some think that if brother
Brigham, brother Heber, and others go there, they will take the rest
with them, but I can tell you that they will not do it, for justice
stands at the door and demands its claims, and though mercy stands
pleading on the other side it cannot rob justice, for justice must
have its demands, and will claim that which is its own, and mercy
cannot claim that which is not its own, and neither can rob the other.
By observing justice and mercy we can enter through the gates into the
city and obtain that glory which we are all anticipating.
Brethren and sisters, reflect where we are, what we are, and what we
are doing; how careless and unconcerned some of us often are in
relation to those things that we are counseled to do.
I was noticing this morning that the public square and the public
buildings are not where brother Brigham first stuck the stake, no, nor
within half a mile of that spot. I am only touching upon this one
thing to show you how it has been, not to hurt your feelings: and this
and like conduct is the reason why there has not been more
improvement, and why the Indians burn your wood and kill your cattle
and horses, and, in short, is the reason why they do this, that, and a
thousand other disagreeable things. Perhaps there is not a perfect
unity of faith and feeling towards those appointed to preside in this
place. Should any dissension exist here among this little flock of
Whoever is guided by those whom God appoints is the wisest man,
although he may appear to be one of the most simple that can be found.
Do you not believe that? I know it, for, although he may be rather
rough in external appearance, he will be filled with wisdom, inasmuch
as he abides the counsel of those placed over him, for it is God who
does the work, and He can make a wise man out of one who is very
simple in the eyes of the world.
I know some think that they accomplish the work, but it is God that
does it. When I place myself passively, like a violin in the hands of
a performer, and let the Almighty lay His bow upon me, can He play a
good tune upon a rusty fiddle? I have seen and heard a good musician
produce some of the best music on an old rusty instrument. It does not
matter if you hold out till your hair is as thin as mine, you will
have to acknowledge that it is God who gives us wisdom and furnishes
us unto good works.
When a man is appointed by the proper authorities and set apart to
preside, uphold and sustain that man, for he has power with God; and
God will give him revelation for your guidance in the way of all
truth, and he will know the mind of the Lord by day and by night.
The difficulty is that no man can be appointed to an office here, nor
in Springville, nor in Peteetneet, nor any other place, but what there
is some man whom many of the people think is a little smarter, and
they think that they know a little better than the one who is
appointed. Notwithstanding all the instructions that President Brigham
Young has given to this people, many still think that they know better
than he does, and they do not like his counsel, but reject it and
treat it as the words of some wicked man.
These feelings exist, and I do wish that this people were of one heart
and of one mind. You cannot and will not listen to the instructions of
those placed to counsel you, until you are more united; but when you
are united you will listen to the words and counsels of those placed
here to counsel and govern you, as strictly as if President Young was
When people will not listen to the instructions of their President, do
you suppose they would listen to the instruction of the Lord Himself,
if He were here? No, they would not. Do many of you believe that this
is brother Brigham? If you do, you do not believe that his words are
all for your good, and are those which are given to him for your
You believe that Joseph was a Prophet, but many could not believe even
this when he was alive, but now that he is dead they can believe it.
Jesus was a Prophet, though few believed so when he was upon the
earth, but when he left them, nearly all could believe his divine
This has always been the case in regard to all the Prophets, for the
sons of those who killed the Prophets living in their day adorned the
sepulchers of those whom their fathers had put to death, and crucified
the Son of God.
Why cannot the people acknowledge a Prophet while he is living? It is
because their acts and feelings make them like the old infidel who
said, "Old Bright, although I love you so much, I would freely give
you away, if by so doing I could know that there is a God."I presume
many of you would give your pet cow, ox, or horse, if by that gift you
could know that brother Brigham is a Prophet. He is what he professes
to be, and a good deal more; I wish you all to understand that.
If you will be united and go ahead, be of one heart and of one mind,
and make this place like the garden of Eden, the blessings of the
Almighty, both temporal and spiritual, will rest upon you.
My mind is cheerful and comfortable, except when I see and reflect
upon the carelessness, stupidity, and worldly affections of many of
this people, whom I love and delight to be with, then I mourn over
Let us go on unto perfection, not leaving the doctrines of Christ,
repentance from dead works, and baptism for remission of sins, but,
keeping them in mind, go on to perfection. Do not make calculations a
second time to lay a foundation for repentance and baptism; but walk
humbly and faithfully before the Lord our God, and listen to the
counsels that He gives to us through His servants.
In all the counsel and teaching that I give, I lay myself liable to be
corrected, and if found in error I am willing to acknowledge it at
once. Then why should not you be willing also? I am ready and willing
to come to the light, that I may be scanned, purged, and purified,
that I may love God with all my heart, might, mind, and strength, and
my neighbor as myself.
Perhaps many feel a little sober because our bread is cut off, but I
am glad of it, because it will be a warning to us, and teach us to lay
it up in future, as we have been told. How many times have you been
told to store up your wheat against the hard times that are coming
upon the nations of the earth? When we first came into these valleys
our President told us to lay up stores of all kinds of grain, that the
earth might rest once in seven years. The earth is determined to rest,
and it is right that it should. It only requires a few grasshoppers to
make the earth rest, they can soon clear it. This is the seventh year,
did you ever think of it?
There is very little grain in Great Salt Lake County, and but little
between here and that county, and none south of this place, except at
Peteetneet, but I expect we will have some potatoes, squashes, corn,
and so on, and do first-rate.
When we first came here, and lived on thistle roots, segos,
wolfskins, and like articles of food, we considered that we were doing
well; then let us go to, and strive by the help of God to be Saints.
We are going ahead, and if you who live here are not, we shall leave
you behind. Fathers and mothers, families, old and young, all who are
in favor of going ahead and serving the Lord our God, say, aye. (The
response to this call was simultaneous and unanimous.)
Those who wish to go home and attend to their families, their farms,
and their cattle, say, no. (No response.)
If you will be humble and faithful from this time forth, the Lamanites
will never trouble you, but will come and humble themselves at your
feet and do your chores. Why is it that they trouble you now? Because
a portion of the same spirit which actuates them exists among some of
you. Is not this the case? Tell it out, have you not some of the same
feelings towards them which they evince towards you?
If you are not careful, wrong feelings will get power over you, and
you will begin to murmur and grumble. If you will be one, there will
be no more trouble from this time forth, and this has got to be done,
or there will be trouble. We must be one, in order that this earth may
be regenerated, and that we may have peace, unity, and love
prevailing. Quarrelling in this Church! Can that be the truth? Yes,
and it is hard to tell anything else but truth when speaking of vices
and follies of men.
Let us listen to our President, sever ourselves from the world, cling
to our God, and to His cause, and turn our minds and thoughts to Him,
and the building up of His kingdom on the earth. There is everything
here in the mountains with which to beautify our homes and make our
cities glorious; then let us go to work with all our mights, and be
faithful from this time onward.
May God help you, and bless you in all things that pertain to you, is
my prayer. Amen.
PRESIDENT J. M. GRANT—The instructions given in the forenoon, to have
your thoughts concentrated, and your faith, prayers, and practice one,
must be admitted by all to be of the utmost importance to the Saints
of God. If we do not enjoy the Spirit of the Lord, there are reasons
that we ourselves can assign for the absence of that Spirit. The
practice of Saints, if good, will always bring the Spirit of the Lord,
and keep that Spirit with them from day to day.
I am aware that the Spirit is grieved with different individuals for
different causes; some do not attend to their prayers in the season
thereof, they do not attend to their duties of the present moment,
they do not concentrate their feelings, but allow their minds to
wander like the fools' eyes to the four winds of heaven, hence they
are left to grope for themselves as the blind for the wall. But those
who live up to their duties, the duties of the present hour, and
always make those duties the primary duties of life, live in the light
of the Lord, and walk in the path laid down by the Savior of the
world; they are never in the dark, for the light of the Lord is
shining upon them.
While there are such items connected with our faith and duty, as were
laid before us in the morn ing, we may do well to give some
additional advice in relation thereto.
I have noticed in my travels among the Saints, from time to time, that
their profession was long and loud in relation to their strength and
faith in "Mormonism," and in fact they would be much offended if
called weak in the faith; they will speak well of faith, repentance,
baptism, the gift of the Holy Ghost by the laying on of hands, the
healing of the sick by the administration of the Elders, and of some
of the general views of the Church, and claim to be very strong, very
devout, and very much attached to the cause, and would feel much
offended indeed if anyone should even suspect that they were weak in
the faith; and at the same time perhaps those individuals, who make
such high professions of faith and devotedness, will acknowledge that
there are certain important truths revealed from heaven which they
would ridicule, scoff at, and trample under their feet.
They will also permit their children to ridicule them, and will laugh
them out of their doors by the aid of their children and those friends
who visit them, and yet claim to be strong in the faith, to be firm in
the principles of "Mormonism," and Latter-day Saints of good standing.
When the Prophet Joseph was living and gave such revelations to the
Church as God gave to him, those persons could not endure them all,
there were doctrines which they would not receive as from God.
I, as one individual, would give all such persons this advice—whatever
you do, and whatever you may have been guilty of, for you are guilty
of many improprieties and, probably, of many unvirtuous acts of life,
forsake that which is not right, and begin to walk in the light of
Do not allow yourselves to laugh at, or treat with scorn, any
revelation of God; and I would further advise that you do not allow
your wives, sons, or daughters to do it, but rear the standard of
truth, and make it one of the leading points of your faith to support
that standard in your families, and among your friends, and thus have
the law of God made honorable.
Inasmuch as the Almighty God has revealed certain doctrines and
sanctioned certain practices, and seeing that the Almighty has said
that these revelations and practices are true and righteous, I
therefore advise that you do not allow the same to be trampled under
foot as salt that has no savor. Again, let no man, whether Gentile or
Jew, Israelite or Greek, nor your wives or children, nor any whom you
have jurisdiction over, throw out any jeers upon, nor sneer, laugh,
and scoff at, any portion of the law of God. Some items of doctrine
are especially obnoxious to some men and some women who have peculiar
feelings respecting them, and because of such feelings they begin to
laugh at those who are favorable to those items, and attempt to spoil
the good leaven.
My advice in all such cases is, just tell them that there is the hole
which the carpenter made, and they can go through it, for you will
have the law of God reverenced by all who reside in or visit your
habitation. I merely give this advice as some that might be applied to
the Saints; as some of the everyday and practical advice. I allude to
the entire law of God, to all that the Lord our God has revealed,
whether it pertains to the building of tabernacles or to the building
of temples, or to faith, repentance, baptism, or the laying on of
hands, or to the matrimonial relations, or to any doctrine or
principle which relates to the salvation and glory of man.
I say as one, that I have no fellowship for that man who will permit
any person, over whom he has any right ful control, to ridicule
the law, or any portion of the law, of God. I have no fellowship for
those who allow any such proceedings in their houses, neither have I
any fellowship for those who ridicule the law of God in any respect;
and I shall be glad when they take their exit to California, or to the
States, for they are, in their persons, in their actions, and by their
words, detrimental to their neighbors and the circles in which they
You who live here and round about, whether you are governed by a
proper spirit in all these matters of doctrine I know not, but whether
or not, these ideas will not hurt you. It is too late in the day to
preach poor pussyism here, for you will have to live up to these
practical duties of life, one and all, and be one, to pray often in
public as well as in private, to honor God and His word in all your
ways, and to see that His law is not dishonored by any under your
I am aware that some of you suppose that this is a great meeting, a
three days' meeting, and of course you expect to hear some great
mysteries pertaining to the kingdom of God. Well, you have heard them
this morning, and I wish to offer some further teaching on the
practical duties which pertain to family government. I know some men,
who have been in this Church twenty or twenty-two years, who are as
they were, stereotyped editions, and who admit strangers into their
houses, and allow them to blaspheme, to curse, and swear.
I wish to see those who profess to be Saints act as Saints ought to
act. In the Church of the living God I believe that every man and
woman that will admit evil practices, ought to be called up and dealt
with for their fellowship, and if they will not reform, regulate their
households and set them in order, they ought to be cut off from the
Church. It is humbug to talk about first regulating a city, a county,
or a territory; but start with a family at a time, and let the Bishop
who presides see what is going on with every family, and when a family
is found which will admit of God and His laws being ridiculed, cut
them off from the Church. If any are found who will curse and swear,
and break the law of the Sabbath, bring them up and deal with them for
that; and if any are known to steal, deal with them for that act.
The Church needs trimming up, and if you will search, you will find in
your wards certain branches which had better be cut off. The kingdom
would progress much faster, and so will you individually, than it will
with those branches on, for they are only dead weights to the great
First get the families united, then get the wards, the towns, the
cities, and the counties regulated, and you will have every part of
the Territory right; but this spirit of ridicule must not be allowed.
Is a man who loves God going to have the law of the Almighty
ridiculed? Many of those who profess so much, will feign publicly
acknowledge and support the very doctrines which they and their
friends deride and permit to be scoffed at, and at the same time they
will practice unlawfully, in secret, those things which they accuse
I would like to see the work of reformation commence, and continue
until every man had to walk to the line, then we should have something
like union; but you might as well cast little pebbles in the air to
stay the wind as to undertake to make those walk right, pray right,
and do right who are full of the devil. People must be right in their
works, and be brought to know and practice their duties. You have got
doctrine enough and revelation enough, and perhaps one
difficulty is that you are too full of them. One doctrine which you
need is to make your families, your streets, and everything about you
clean, and to prepare proper outhouses. Purify yourselves, your
houses, lots, farms, and everything around you on the right and on
the left, then the Spirit of the Lord can dwell with you.
Do you suppose, when I go into a house that is filthy, that I believe
that Saints of God dwell there? No, I believe that they are a filthy
set of beings. Saints must practice cleanliness and purity, and show
by their prayers, by all their works, and in their families, that they
are reforming, and forsaking all and every kind and species of
filthiness and evil practice, no matter what it is, no, not though it
takes the hair off from your heads; no matter if it be high, low,
rough, or smooth, the Almighty has given you a law to obey and
reverence; and if you practice those doctrines which you have
embraced, though all hell foam against you, by the power of God you
will triumph and ask no odds of anyone.
Talk about the Saints coming up to the Church of the Firstborn, to
the state of perfection which Enoch attained; if men and women ever
attain to this, they have got to be pure in all their habits, pure in
their spirits as well as in their doctrines, for the Lord has told us
what is right and required in those things.
We have the best code of laws and the best men to teach us there are
upon the earth, therefore all that is wanted is for us to practice
those lessons which are taught us by the servants of the living God,
and to love God with all our hearts, and live continually in the fear
of the Almighty. Then when you come to meeting, you will not hear
chastisement and reproof, but you will hear the peaceable things of
the kingdom, and you will hear men and women speak and sing the sweet
things of the kingdom of God.
In conclusion, may that light which as in you increase till you are
prepared to bask in the perfect light of God. May God bless and save
you, is my prayer in the name of Jesus. Amen.
ELDER E. T. BENSON—I feel thankful for the privilege and blessing that
I now enjoy with my brethren, and for the privilege of bearing my
testimony to the peaceable things of the kingdom of God. I have been
indeed edified today by the remarks that have been made, and for one
I mean to try to practice the teachings, and carry them out to the
letter, according to the ability that I have.
Although some people may think that those items are small, and not
what they expected to have on this occasion, still they are just such
doctrines as I expected to hear; and I shall continue to expect to
hear them until we become more perfect in the Gospel than we are at
present, for we must learn to practice what has been committed unto us
as a people and as individuals, before we shall be taught any greater
things. You may search into your own hearts, among your families, and
in the midst of your own neighborhood, and you will find that those
things which have been touched upon, are what grieve the Holy Spirit,
and cause more or less dissension in our midst.
When Jesus commissioned the Apostles, telling them to go and preach
the Gospel to every creature, and baptize every one that believed, he
promised that they should receive the gift of the Holy Ghost, which
would lead them into all truth, and show them things past, present,
and to come. We all know that the Spirit is a sure guide for
all the Latter-day Saints; hence, we also know that the dictation of
that Spirit will not lead to confusion, neither will it bring
darkness, hatred, malice, and envy, and it will not lead a man into
error, but it will lead and direct him into all truth. That Spirit
which we received by being obedient to the Gospel covenant will be our
constant guide and companion in sickness and in health; and what is
the feeling of that individual who enjoys the sweet and benign
influences of the Holy Ghost? He acknowledges the hand of God in all
things, whether in life or in death, in prosperity or in adversity; it
matters not what his situation may be, all is right with him. He
merely wishes to know what there is for him to do, and he is all alive
Such an individual is willing to be taught the simple things of the
kingdom, and he will not ridicule "Mormonism" in any respect, neither
will he suffer it to be done under his roof, nor upon his possessions,
and he is willing to lay down his life for it, and Jesus said,
"Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for
his friends." I was actually astonished when I used to hear some of
the brethren, at the time the Prophet Joseph was martyred, say they
were afraid he was in transgression, and had incurred the displeasure
of the Almighty, for no Latter-day Saint ever believed it for a
moment. Why? Because there were the words of Jesus, that he had the
greatest love who could lay down his life for his friends; and Jesus
himself had this love, for he laid down his life for his friends; and
by his death and resurrection opened up the way to eternal lives.
It is the little things that we need to observe now, and as brother
Brigham says, the observance of the small things is what brings us the
great blessings of the Almighty. Look, and think of the position of
the people here, and in various other places throughout the Territory
of Utah; do they all strictly honor the principles which brother Grant
has been speaking upon? Most of them say they do, but I wish to see
A man who has labored from the commencement of the work has embraced
certain principles because God has commanded him, not because he
wanted such principles to be established, not that his appetite was of
such a nature that he desired something of the kind, but because the
great Jehovah had so commanded through His Prophets; and hence these
things cannot be ridiculed by the Saints; the counsel of the servants
of God cannot be treated with contempt, and set at naught, without
condemnation following. Still you will find some who ridicule and
treat as naught the holy principles of our religion, and say, "I am
sound in faith; I am filled with religion, but I cannot put up with
that awful doctrine, polygamy."
It is not best to make a great profession in these days, but let our
actions and works correspond with our profession, and that will show
that we have embraced the truth for the love of it, and not for gain.
Let persecution come, let drought, famine, and distress come, for the
Lord has designed them; and when these things come, we can eat thistle
roots and drink buttermilk, and honor God, and have His Holy Spirit
with us. We can do this because we have embraced the Gospel of Jesus
Christ, and the faith of Abraham. Abraham did not stand and argue with
the Lord, in order to find out whether Sarah was to bear him another
Isaac in the place of the one he was commanded to offer up, but he
believed that God would order all things right, and his faith was accounted to him for righteousness.
Shall we not have confidence in God's Prophets, and in those whom He
has placed to teach us? Those who are not satisfied with them are
constantly grumbling and growling about their circumstances and the
prosperity of the Church, but when we have the Holy Spirit, all is
right, and we feel satisfied; the visions of the Almighty and of the
heavens are before us night and day, and we have confidence in the
holy Gospel, in the work of the Lord, in the Priesthood, and in those
who hold that authority upon this earth.
When people have the keys of the Priesthood and the light of heaven,
they ought to use the blessing of God as not abusing them.
I wish to bear my testimony to the truth of what you have been taught
this day, for it is faithful, and has been dictated by the Holy Ghost.
When I enjoy the spirit of this Gospel and the power of the
Priesthood, do you wish to know how I feel? I feel that I could preach
my way through all manner of opposition. Do I rejoice? Yes, all the
time; when I lie down and when I rise up. Latter-day Saints never
should be troubled by any small matters, but when troubles do arise,
say, "The Lord's will be done in all things; I am shortsighted; I
cannot see afar off, and unless my mind is lighted up by the Holy
Spirit, I cannot do much good."
Do we enjoy ourselves without that Spirit? I will ask my brethren and
sisters now present, do we enjoy as much as it is our privilege to
enjoy? Can we enjoy the Holy Spirit when we are finding fault with our
neighbors? No, we cannot. God has set in His Church, firstly,
Apostles; secondarily, Prophets; then pastors, teachers, helps,
governments, and spiritual gifts; for the perfecting of the Saints,
for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ,
and to prevent the members thereof from being tossed to and fro by
every wind of doctrine; and they are to continue until we all come to
a unity of the faith. I think you are pretty well satisfied in Provo
with those who are placed over you, for you know that they are
appointed by the authority of heaven, and it is the right of those who
appointed them to dictate you and all others; it is therefore your
duty to give heed to those placed over you in authority, and if you
do, you will enjoy the Spirit of God to a great extent, even to your
We are called upon to uphold, by our faith, works, and our prayers,
those who are over us; we have raised our hands to sustain and uphold
them, and will we turn round and find fault with that which we have
sanctioned? Can you enjoy the Spirit of God if you do this? No. In
order to enjoy that spirit you must reverence all the members of the
Priesthood, no matter who may be in possession of it. Do you ever hear
brother Brigham, brother Heber, brother Jedediah, or the Twelve
Apostles, censuring the Bishops, or any other person, without a cause?
No, never. They give them all the influence and power that they can,
in order that they may be bold before the people, and have influence to
carry out the things that are given to them to accomplish. Where there
is a lack of confidence and proper reverence, people are afraid of the
Prophet of God.
Does brother Brigham ever tyrannize! No, he blesses the Saints all the
day long, and bears with the sins of the people, as much so as any
other Prophet of God ever did, and asks God all the day long, to
forgive them; and he continues to do this so long as there is a spark
of integrity left in the individuals over whom he is watching.
We do not expect to be purified and become perfect at once, so much so
that the old cloven foot can have no influence among us, but I expect
that the vision of the Prophet Daniel will be fulfilled, and we are
the persons to carry it out. I feel to continue to work righteousness,
and the time is soon coming when all will have to walk to the line.
Jesus says, "Except ye are of one heart and of one mind, ye are not
mine;" and we have to shape our minds until they become alike. There
are not many ways of getting to heaven, for God is one, and His way of
saving mankind is one.
"But," says the old sectarian priest, "going to heaven is like going
to mill; if your wheat is good the miller will never inquire which way
you came." Let others say as they please, we know that we have got to
walk in that straight and narrow path which has been pointed out to
us, and that the course which saved men in former days will save the
people in these days, and that the same principles that will save us
will save others. If we would carry out practically all that we have
received, and not trouble ourselves about any more until that was
done, it would exalt us to a higher state than we now enjoy. I have
something good to do; I am all right. Here are our blessings now; we
taste the blessings of this congregation today, and our place and our
blessings are at present in this bowery, and not away off somewhere
else. If our feelings are centered here, then are we blessed indeed;
but if our minds are wandering, they cannot be full of joy, for they
must be concentrated on the things of God and His kingdom so long as
this meeting continues; then we shall feel refreshed, and I presume we
all need to be.
[After making a few remarks about the traditions, habits, and
It is our duty, brethren and sisters, to go to work and bring these
natives to an understanding of the principles of civilization, to
teach them to till the earth, and earn their bread by the sweat of
their brows; and if they are needy and ask us, we should feed them,
and at all times be an example to them. We have not been as faithful
as we ought to have been in many of these things.
I have a little Indian boy and girl, and certainly it is repugnant to
my feelings to have to put up with their dirty practices, but I have
passed a great many of these things by; and this I have done because I
knew what our duties were. In a short season we shall be rewarded for
all that we do to civilize this lost and fallen race. The little boy
will soon be quite bright, his mind is becoming clear and perceptive,
and if he sees a horse, a man, or any other object, he will always
remember them. True, he yet has some of his Indian traits, and I
presume it will be some time before they are all erased from his
And even some Saints are guilty of many filthy habits, for some, when
they are sick and ought to observe cleanliness in the fullest degree,
will send for the Elders to lay hands upon them, and say, "I was taken
sick a week ago last Sunday, and have been so bad that I have not
washed since, and I have not had a clean shirt on, or clean sheets
upon the bed."
God has condescended to speak to His Saints, and has instructed them
to wash their bodies with pure water, and to observe cleanliness of
body as well as of spirit; this is necessary, and belongs to our
religion. We should also have wisdom, and exercise it in both eating
and drinking, ever keeping a guard over ourselves in all the practices
of life, and listen to the still small whisperings of the Holy Spirit which never leads a man into error.
I know that the Lord directed brother Joseph by His Spirit, and he
never went wrong. What guides brother Brigham? The same Holy Spirit of
promise, and blessed is that man who understands the things of the
Spirit, for it will direct him aright and lead him in the way of life,
and open up his mind to behold the things of eternity; and the very
moment that a man sees with this Spirit, he understands the mind of
Many have been led astray, and have believed that they could get to
heaven without being united with the body of the Church; but if we are
ever saved, we must be concentrated in our feelings, and our power,
objects, and faith must be one in the kingdom of God. When we are one,
we feel to rejoice in the things of God, and all goes well.
May the Holy Spirit guide you from this time, henceforth. Amen.