We enjoy great blessings and privileges, and ought to appreciate them.
No people on the earth enjoy that peace and tranquility that we do in
these mountains; and no people have so much reason to be truly
thankful and grateful, and to acknowledge the hand of God in all
things, as we have. We have the words of life: the law of life is
committed unto us—the Priesthood of the Son of God, which is after the
power of an endless life. We are in the happy and peaceable possession
We have great reason to be truly thankful that we are in these
mountains. I have said so from the time we first came here. When our
enemies learned that we were going to locate in these mountains, they
said that we never could be driven from them, and they told the truth.
If we ever go from them, we shall go voluntarily. They said that they
would drive us from Ohio, from Missouri, and from Illinois, and they
did so; but they cannot drive us from these mountains we now inhabit.
All we have to do is to do right, walk humbly before God, deal justly
one with another and with the whole human family, and let our worst
wish toward our worst enemies be that we may see the time when they
will be obliged to do right. I never did wish anything worse upon them
than they should do right, pay their debts, deal justly, and walk
humbly one with another. This is the worst wish I have towards those
who are now here and have tried to shed our blood for money, and that
when they leave the Territory they do not steal anything. I despair of
inducing them not to lie about us.
All the nations are fast approaching the brink of ruin. Search the
most enlightened nations now dwelling on the earth, and you will learn
that they live upon fiction, delight in shadow, run after error,
greedily drink down falsehood, and hate truth. This is particularly
the case with the nation in which we live, as everyone knows, who is
acquainted with its religious, political, and moral classes. There are
individual exceptions; but, taking the nations of the world as
nations, they do not believe the truth; they are after falsehood and
lies, and say to themselves—"The world goes on—the morning comes as
usual, and is followed by the evening. We live day after day, and all
things are about as they were yesterday." How long will they continue
so? They think that all things are going to remain as they were since
the fathers fell asleep, that Christ is not coming, and that the
prophecies will not be fulfilled, except it may be spiritually.
Search history, from the days of Enoch, when he built a city which was
taken from the earth; pass on to Noah who built an ark and floated on
the water over a drowning world, and to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob;
read the writings of Moses, and of Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and the
lesser Prophets, down to the time of John the Baptist, the forerunner
of the Messiah, or until Mary and Elizabeth rejoiced together
that the Messiah was to be born; then read the writings of the
disciples of the Lord Jesus, and search history from that day to this,
and you will learn that when the nations have for years turned much of
their attention to manufacturing instruments of death, they have
sooner or later used those instruments.
Our nation, England, France, Germany, Austria, Italy, and other
nations have for years exercised their inventive skill, and expended
much means in inventing and fabricating instruments of death. Upon his
return, brother Hooper presented to me a rifle, for which it is almost
claimed that it will kill people while it is hanging up, and without
powder and ball; and brother George Q. Cannon brought a brace of
pistols, each of which can be fired twelve times instead of six. From
the authority of all history, the deadly weapons now stored up and
being manufactured will be used until the people are wasted away, and
there is no help for it. The spirit of revolution goes on through the
nations: it never goes back.
We are in these mountains, and in the enjoyment of peace and plenty.
Are there any who have not enough bread? Some complain of living
poorly; but what hinders such persons from living well? Have you not
plenty of breadstuff? Yes, you have the best of flour, and can have
plenty of good cornmeal. You also have rye, barley, and oats. Who
prevents your keeping a cow and having butter and milk? Can you not
raise potatoes, squashes, turnips, onions, cabbages, and every other
kind of produce that you can use? What hinders your keeping a pig and
having a little pork? Nobody hinders you: you can have all these
things, if you are so disposed, and live well. Who can disturb you?
Nobody but yourselves. You can quarrel with each other, rail against
each other, and make life disagreeable, if you are so disposed;
otherwise you may have an agreeable life here, and the peace of God
will rest upon you.
We are the best people in the world, and have the greatest reason to
be thankful because of our location and situation. Let us love one
another, and love God supremely. It is written, "Love your enemies."
Brother Erastus Snow was going to correct Paul for trying to excuse
himself. I do not think the term was any more misapplied than when the
Apostles wrote, "Love your enemies;" for I do not believe a word of
that. "Love your enemies!" What, love hell? When people do that, they
get where devils are. If it had been written, "Love the spirits God
has placed in tabernacles, and try to reclaim them and do them good,
and pray for those who despitefully use you," I would feed and clothe
them, take peculiar care of them, and place them where they would not
hurt anybody. You may think that I am disputing the Bible. If you
understood what the Lord means when he talks about loving his
children, you would understand that he does not love them as they are
now; for he hates and is angry with the wicked. He dislikes their
wicked acts, but he loves his children, because he has organized them,
and he wishes to see them obedient.
Many of you are acquainted with brother John Smith, the Patriarch, who
went to the States last year after his friends. He has just come into
the Bowery. The companies are all well. They want some flour, and we
can send it to them. Brother Kimball will send his team this time, and
there is no necessity for calling upon the Bishops. We have heard from
the last company. On the fourth of August they were on Wood River:
their cattle looked well, and the company was making good
progress. They had been eleven days out from Florence, and had
traveled 170 miles. A few cattle have died in some of the companies;
and if any of the brethren, who have relatives or friends in the
companies still out, wish to assist them, they can do so by sending
out their teams and helping them in.
God bless you! Amen.