I will read a portion of the writings of the prophet Daniel,
commencing at the 27th verse of the 2nd chapter of the book of Daniel.
[The speaker read the verses alluded to, from verse 27 to verse 49
These verses are of themselves a text and texts, a sermon and sermons.
We have a great deal of talking, preaching, exhorting, counseling,
giving advice, &c., from this stand and in many other places where the
Saints assemble; but perhaps it may be the case with many, as it is
somewhat with me, that they in a measure neglect to read the Bible,
and forget many things which are written therein. Perhaps there are
many who have not read much in the Bible since they came into this
Church, not having had much time to do so.
I was a Bible reader before I came into this Church; and, so far as
the letter of the book was concerned, I understood it. I
professed to be a believer in the Bible so far as I knew how; but as
for understanding by the Spirit of the Lord, I never did until I
became a Latter-day Saint. I had many a time read Daniel's
interpretation of Nebuchadnezzar's dream, but it was always a dark
subject to me. I was well acquainted with many of the priests of the
day, and I would frequently think to myself that I would get some
knowledge from them. And as I became acquainted with smart,
intelligent, literary priests and professors of religion, I thought,
Now I can obtain some intelligence from this or from that man; and I
would begin to ask questions on certain texts of Scripture; but they
would always leave me as they found me, in the dark. They were there
themselves; and I knew of a surety, before I heard the Gospel, that
the priests were blind guides leading the blind, and that there was
nothing left for them only to stumble here and there, and perhaps fall
into a ditch. That much knowledge I had previous to my becoming
acquainted with what is called "Mormonism."
It would be very profitable to the inhabitants of the earth to learn
one fact, which a very few in the world have learned, that they are
ignorant—that they have not the wisdom, the knowledge, and the
intelligence outside the circle of what is called the wisdom of man.
For persons to know and understand their own talent, their own
strength, their own ability, their own influence, would be very
profitable to the inhabitants of the earth, though but very few learn
I do not know that I feel particularly thankful that I learned what I
did with regard to the lack of intelligence and knowledge professed by
Christians to be in their possession; but I have been thankful that my
lot and fortune were such that my God gave me good, sound sense. I am
thankful for that. When the Gospel came to me, surely within me and
all around me I could see very plainly what the Apostle meant in the
words, "When the commandment came, sin revived, and I died."
I could see clearly where the inhabitants of the earth were, in their
position before their God. The whole world—everything upon this
globe—was veiled in darkness. There was a mist, a fog, a veil, or
covering over the minds of the whole of the people on this earth; and
what they understood was nothing more than a faint glimmering of light
that would dazzle before their eyes for a minute, and they would see
it no more. They were like a ship befogged on the ocean and depending
for guidance upon a lighthouse whose glimmering rays could only be
discerned at long intervals, when the ship could again be put upon a
safe course. But the wind has shifted; and, without light or compass,
they do not know whether it is blowing east, west, north, or south;
and then how could they tell whether they were directing their course
aright? The Christian world, I discovered, was like the captain and
crew of a vessel on the ocean without a compass, and tossed to and fro
whithersoever the wind listed to blow them. When the light came to me,
I saw that all the so-called Christian world was groveling in
We profess to have the light, intelligence, and knowledge with which
to understand the things of God. The dream of King Nebuchadnezzar and
its interpretation by Daniel are as plain to the man and woman filled
with the power of the Holy Ghost, as are the most common lessons to
the school children: they most clearly understand the interpretation.
Daniel saw that in the latter days the God of heaven was going to set
up his kingdom upon this his earth. He has set that kingdom up,
as you who are here this day are witnesses.
What brought you from the States and other regions to these mountains?
What caused the men and women before me to leave their good farms,
their good houses, their merchandise, and all the luxuries and
comforts of life so dear to the natural man? What caused many women to
leave their husbands, their children, their parents? What caused all
this? What is the reason of such conduct? Can any man tell? The world
are trying to; but they are even more ignorant about it than they are
of the present movements and designs of the President of the United
States. They know not the reason why the people are assembled here;
for they cannot and will not see and understand anything only as they
discern it by the powers of the natural man.
I have told them many times, and I can now tell them again, if the
whole world could hear my voice, they are to be pitied; and I pray for
them. We have traversed the earth to preach the Gospel to them. We
have often started upon our missions almost destitute, without hats,
nearly without shoes and any of the comforts of life, to travel
thousands and thousands of miles to preach the Gospel to the people.
If they will not be benefited, our skirts are clear of their blood,
and they must bear the blame.
Can they tell the cause of this people's being here today? Can they
give the cause for the influence I have over the Latter-day Saints?
They cannot. If this was not the kingdom of God upon the earth, do you
suppose that the world would be arrayed against it? No. There is not a
sound, well-informed mind in the world but what would decide at once
that there is no cause of enmity against this people, and that all
hostility towards us arises from the fact that we have the eternal
Priest hood and the influence thereof. The kingdom of heaven is here,
and we are in it, and they are angry at us solely for that.
There is not a king, governor, or ruler, but what desires, and is
endeavoring to obtain the influence that I and my brethren possess
and are lawfully striving to obtain. Do you suppose that there was
ever a President of the United States but what desired the confidence
of his constituents? No, never. Was there ever a senator, a
representative, a governor of a state, a politician, or a priest, but
what desired the same power in his sphere that I have in mine? They
cannot get it, because they do not know how. What is the reason? They
have not got the kingdom of God, which binds the people together. They
are ignorant of it, though we have traveled, barefooted and almost
naked, to preach it to them; and I say that they are to be pitied.
How many times I have gone to preach to them, and, with all the
kindness and calmness I was capable of, told them that I had something
to cheer and comfort them, if they would hear it with good honest
hearts. How often I have asked, "Can I have your meetinghouse or your
schoolhouse to preach in? Can I have the privilege of preaching to
the people?" "No, you cannot, if I can prevent it." That is the spirit
of the priests.
It is the priests and elders of Christendom who have the power of hell
in them which causes the trouble that you see, and that you have seen
and borne for many years. They are like that unruly member, the
tongue, which sets on fire the course of nature, and is set on fire of
The priests have this fire, and who fans the flame? Brother Smoot has
told you who blows the bellows. It is the politician, the drunkard,
and the filth and offscouring of the earth, who run at the beck
and call of those who have a dollar or sixpence for them—of those who
will treat them and give them an oyster supper and a good lodging.
There is another class, the speculators, who endeavor to get up some
plan or other by which to make money. Brother Smoot has given you a
few items concerning their present movements in the east. Through
their whining, bickering, howling, groveling, squalling, and
scratching, and in a political and speculative point of view, many are
striving to most egregiously befool our Government and squander its
revenue. And the priests are also at the bottom of this movement; for
they have the power that is of hell, and others blow the flame and
furnish the fuel to persecute the Latter-day Saints, because they are
in the kingdom that the God of heaven has set up in the last days, and
that shall never be destroyed.
It is a little more than twenty-seven years since I commenced reading
the Book of Mormon and defending the cause we are engaged in. My mind
was open to conviction, and I knew that the Christian world had not
the religion that Jesus and his Apostles taught. I knew that there was
not a Bible Christian on the earth within my knowledge. A few years
previous to that time Joseph had obtained the plates and began
translating the Book of Mormon; and from the time he found those
plates in the hill Cumorah, there has been just that tirade of abuse,
lying, slandering, defaming the name and character of the Prophet and
his associates, that there is at this day. It is no hotter a time now
than it was then; there is no more persecution now than there was
God has commenced to set up his kingdom on the earth, and all hell and
its devils are moving against it. Hell is yawning and sending forth
its devils and their imps. What for? To destroy the kingdom of God
from the earth. But they cannot do it.
The God of heaven showed Nebuchadnezzar that this kingdom would never
be destroyed; and that is my testimony. This is the kingdom of
heaven—the kingdom of God which Daniel saw—the kingdom that was
revealed to King Nebuchadnezzar and interpreted to him by the Prophet
Daniel. This is the kingdom that was to be set up in the last days. It
is like a stone taken from the mountain without hands, with all its
roughness, with all its disfigured appearance—uncomely—even a
stumblingblock and a stone of offense to the nations of the earth.
This is the kingdom that is set up; and the history of the kingdoms of
this world all understand, or can read and understand it.
Some may cry out, "Your saying that this is the kingdom of God, does
that make it so?" No, not by any means. "Your testimony," Mr. Young,
"is, that this is the kingdom of God on the earth—that which was shown
to Daniel the Prophet centuries ago." Yes, that is my testimony. "Does
this make it so?" No it does not; but let me tell you that it is
true; consequently, I bear my testimony of its truth, though my
testimony does not alter that truth in the least, one way or the
other; neither does any other man's. That is my testimony, and has
been all the time.
Why I testify of these things is because they are revealed to me, and
not to another for me. They were not revealed to Joseph Smith for me.
He had the keys to get visions and revelations, dreams and
manifestations, and the Holy Ghost for the people. Those keys were
committed to him; and through that administration, blessed be the name
of God, I have received the spirit of Christ Jesus which is the
spirit of prophecy. Our testimony does not make this true, and the
testimony of our enemies that it is not the kingdom of God does not
make that true or false. The fact stands upon its own basis, and will
continue so to stand, without any of the efforts of the children of
I have told you the cause of all the bustle and stir against us. The
blind are leading the blind; and if their hearts were honest—if they
would throw off the mask of prejudice and erroneous parental
education, they could receive the truth as well as you and I. Once in
a while one says goodbye to the traditions of the fathers. A few will
cast off those prejudices that surround the people, and say, "We will
read, pray, think, and meditate, and we will ask God for ourselves."
That is the reason why you and I are here today. We asked God for a
testimony, and he witnesses to us from the heavens that this is the
kingdom which Daniel saw, and we have embraced it, and it is dearer
than everything else upon the face of this earth.
Do we expect that the devils will howl? Yes. When has this Church had
the peace that we have had since we have been in the mountains? Never.
Where is there peace now upon the face of the earth like the peace we
enjoy here? Nowhere. Brother Smoot said that he had been in the lower
regions. He could say that with propriety; for, in fact, we are all in
the lower regions. Where do you think the devils live?
Do you suppose that there is any such thing as a devil? Yes, a great
many believe that there is. Where does he live? The answer comes very
readily. He lives in hell, of course. Then, if there are devils here,
we must also be in hell. Do you not think that the devil is in pain? I
should think he was, by the groanings that are uttered from the east.
You see that with propriety brother Smoot could say that he has been
to the lower regions; but when he arrives here, although the altitude
is much greater, he still is in the same world. We are all here, and
we are surrounded by the devils.
Men rage and boil with wrath and indignation, and they do not know the
cause of it. If they think, "What injury have the 'Mormons' done to
me?" the response from their own minds will be, "Not any." What can
the men truthfully say, who have civilly passed through here to the
west to make their fortunes? That here is a place of peace and
contentment; and, though a thousand miles from civilization and from
all the luxuries and many of the comforts of life, yet here is a
people satisfied, contented, and happy. Did they injure you? "No." Did
they treat you kindly? "Yes." Ask the people in the east what is the
matter? "We cannot tell you—only somebody has said something." What
have they said? "We do not know; we only heard a rumor—that is all."
The people abroad are just as foolish, unwise, and shortsighted as
they can possibly be represented by the best learned men in the world.
What are they doing? What they have done all the time. Have they been
trying to destroy "Mormonism?" Yes. Did they destroy it when they took
the life of Joseph? No. "Mormonism" is here, the priesthood is here,
the keys of the kingdom are here on the earth; and when Joseph went,
they did not go. And if the wicked should succeed in taking my life,
the keys of the kingdom will remain with the Church. But my faith is
that they will not succeed in taking my life just yet. They have not
as good a man to deal with as they had when they had Joseph Smith. I
do not profess to be very good. I will try to take care of
number one, and if it is wicked for me to try to preserve myself, I
shall persist in it; for I am intending to take care of myself.
When they killed Joseph, they were talking about killing a great many
others. Would you believe that the apostates say that I was the
instigator of the death of Joseph and Hyrum? And William Smith has
asserted that I was the cause of the death of his brother Samuel, when
brother Woodruff, who is here today, knows that we were waiting at
the depot in Boston to take passage east at the very time when Joseph
and Hyrum were killed. Brother Taylor was nearly killed at the time,
and Doctor Richards had his whiskers nearly singed off by the blaze
from the guns. In a few weeks after, Samuel Smith died, and I am
blamed as the cause of his death. We did not hear of the death of
Joseph until some three or four weeks after he was basely martyred.
What is now the news circulated throughout the United States? That
Captain Gunnison was killed by Brigham Young, and that Babbitt was
killed on the Plains by Brigham Young and his Danite band. What more?
That Brigham Young has killed all the men who have died between the
Missouri River and California. I do not say that President Buchanan
has any such idea, or the officers of the troops who are reported to
be on their way here; but such are the newspaper stories. Such reports
are in the bellows, and editors and politicians are blowing them out.
According to their version, I am guilty of the death of every man,
woman, and child that has died between the Missouri River and the
California gold mines; and they are coming here to chastise me. The
idea makes me laugh; and when do you think they will get a chance?
Catching is always before hanging. They understand, you know, that I
had gone north and intended to leave this place with such as would
follow me; and they are coming to declare a jubilee. It is their
desire to say to the people, "You are free; you are not under the
bondage of Brigham Young; you need wear his yoke no longer; now let us
get drunk, fight, play at cards, and race horses; and every one of you
women turn to be whores and become associated with the civilization of
Christendom." That is the freedom they are endeavoring to declare
I will make this proposition to Uncle Sam. I will furnish carriages,
horses, the best of drivers, and the best food I have, to transport to
the States every man, woman, and child that wishes to leave this
place, if he will send on at his own expense all those who want to
come to Utah; and we will gain a thousand to their one, as all who
understand the matter very well know. It would have been much better
to have loaded the wagons reported to be on the way here, with men,
women, and children, than with provisions to sustain soldiers; for
they will never get here without we help them; neither do I think that
it is the design of President Buchanan that they should come here.
I am not going to interpret dreams; for I don't profess to be such a
Prophet as were Joseph Smith and Daniel; but I am a Yankee guesser;
and I guess that James Buchanan has ordered this Expedition to appease
the wrath of the angry hounds who are howling around him. He did not
design to start men on the 15th of July to cross these Plains to this
point on foot. Russell and Co. will probably make from eight to ten
hundred thousand dollars by freighting the baggage of the Expedition.
What would induce the Government to expend that amount of money for this Territory? Three years ago they appropriated $45,000 for
the purpose of making treaties with the Utah Indians. Has even that
diminutively small sum ever been sent here? It is in the coffers of
the Government to this day, unless they have stolen it out, or
improperly paid it out for some other purpose.
Have they ever paid their debts due to Utah? No. And now they have
capped their meanness by taking the mail out of the hands of Hiram
Kimball, simply because they knew that he was a member of this Church.
If he had only have apostatized in season and written lies about us,
it is not probable that his mail contract would have been taken from
him without the least shadow of right, as has now been done. He was to
have $23,000 for carrying the mail from Independence to this city once
a month, which was the lowest bid; but because he is a "Mormon," the
contract must be disannulled, and that, too, after he had put by far
the most faithful and efficient service on the route that there
ever has been, as is most well known at Washington. If I thought that
my prayer might be answered, I would pray that not another United
States' mail may come to this city; for until Mr. Kimball began his
service it has been a constant source of annoyance, disappointment,
and to us loss. We can carry our own mails, raise our own dust, and
But woe, woe to that man who comes here to unlawfully interfere with
my affairs. Woe, woe to those men who come here to unlawfully meddle
with me and this people. I swore in Nauvoo, when my enemies were
looking me in the face, that I would send them to hell across lots, if
they meddled with me; and I ask no more odds of all hell today. If
they kill me, it is all right; but they will not until the time comes;
and I think that I shall die a natural death; at least I expect to.
Would it not make any man or community angry to endure and reflect
upon the abuse our enemies have heaped upon us, and are still striving
to pour out upon God's people? Brother Bernhisel says that McGraw's
mail contract was out in August last; but they demanded at his hands
and would pay him to carry it two or three months longer. The Post
Office Department knew, or should have known, that it had forwarded
the acceptance of Mr. Kimball's bid for the new contract in that mail
which McGraw was not carrying; and then it took advantage of the
failure of that mail and trumped up a false allegation of the
unsettled state of Utah, and on those grounds disannulled the contract
with Mr. Kimball. Our mail rights and other rights and privileges are
most unjustly trampled under foot; but they can spend millions to
raise a hubbub and make out that something wrong is being done in
Let me be the President of the United States a little while, and I
would say to the Senators, Representatives, and other officers of
Government, Gentlemen, you must act the part of men and statesmen, or
I will reprove you. What are they angry at me for? Because I will
reprove men for their iniquity, and because I have such influence
here—the very thing they are all after. They think that they are
going to obtain it with money; but they cannot do it.
There is no influence, truth, or righteousness in the world only what
flows from God our Father in the heavens. We have that power, that
influence; we also have such love and submission that we submit
ourselves to our Father and God, as a child does to a kind parent.
May God bless you, brethren and sisters. Amen.