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“The Book of Mormon.” The Evening and the Morning Star (Independence, Missouri) 1, no. 8 (January 1833): [57–59].
THE BOOK OF MORMON.
WHEN darkness covered the earth, and gross darkness the people; when no man did walk in the old paths, nor did search out the everlasting gospel; when the church of Christ, and the gifts which he left in it, could not be found; when men built up churches in the glory of the world; and when all flesh had become so corrupt, that a few more years might have left the cities of the world, like Sodom and Gomorrah, the Lord our Savior, saw fit in his great goodness, endless mercy, and infinite wisdom, to send an angel and signify unto man, that there was a sacred record to be unfolded in the eyes of all the nations, containing the fulness of the gospel. It was the book of Mormon: An account written by the hand of Mormon, upon plates taken from the plates of Nephi. Wherefore it is an abridgement of the record of the people of Nephi; and also of the Lamanites; written to the Lamanites, which are a remnant of the house of Israel; and also to Jew and Gentile; written by way of commandment, and also by the spirit of prophecy and of revelation. Written, and sealed up, and hid up unto the Lord, that they might not be destroyed; to come forth by the gift and power of God, unto the interpretation there-of; sealed by the hand of Moroni, and hid up unto the Lord, to come forth in due time by the way of Gentile; the interpretation thereof by the gift of God. An abridgment taken from the book of Ether, also, which is a record of the people of Jared, which were scattered at the time the Lord confounded the language of the people when they were building a tower to get to heaven: which is to shew unto the house of Israel how great things the Lord hath done for their fathers; and that they may know the covenants of the Lord, that they are not cast off forever; and also to the convincing of the Jew and Gentile that Jesus is the Christ, the Eternal God, manifesting himself unto all nations. And now if there be fault, it be the mistake of men; wherefore condemn not the things of God, that ye may be found spotless at the judgment seat of Christ. This was welcome news to them that looked for the gathering of the righteous, in the last days. They, from a perusal of this book, aided by the Spirit of God, began to see eye to eye in some things, and to lift up their heads and rejoice.—But before the glorious and happy results of this book are set forth, it seems necessary to go back to the time it was brought forth. In the year one thousand eight hundred and twenty seven, the plates came forth from the hill Cumorah, which is in the county of Ontario, and state of New-York, by the power of God. In less than three years after, it was translated by the gift and power of God, and then published; and on the 6th of April, 1830, the church of Christ was organized, with six members. It may be just to remark, that this church was established by revelation, as the church of Christ always has been, since the world began, to be acknowledged by him. As in days of old, so now, the keys of the mysteries of the kingdom of God, were committed unto man, and, by a few commandments, in connexion with the book before us, the contrite and humble seeker of eternal life, had opened to the eyes of his understanding, that happy view, and bright reversion of latter day glory, which shows the nations gathering round the standard of the Lord, which was to be raised upon mount Zion, preparatory to his second coming. That vail which had been cast over the prophecies of the old Testament, or, at least, over the reading of many of them, since the day that Moses vailed his face before the children of Israel, was removed by the plainness of the book of Mormon. The doubtful points of doctrine, in the bible, which left one sect to immerse for baptism; a second to sprinkle; a third to pour, and a fourth to do without either, were cleared up by the book of Mormon. That embarrassment under which thousands had labored for years, to learn how the saints would know where to gather, that all nations might come to Zion, with songs of everlasting joy, and prepare a house, that the Lord might suddenly come to his temple, so that the mountain of the Lord’s house might be established in the top of the mountains, and be exalted above the hills, and the law go forth out of Zion, in the last days, was obviated by the book of Mormon. That wonderful conjecture, which left a blank as to the origin, or forefathers of the American Indians, was done away by the book of Mormon. To use the language of one of its opposers, it opened a flood of light and might justly be called a wonderful volume. But as there are thousands yet to receive this good book, and learn the true points of the Savior’s doctrine, it may be well enough to refer them to some of the allusions to it in the bible. In the 85th Psalm, David said, Truth shall spring out of the earth; and righteousness shall look down from heaven. All that have been blessed with the Spirit of God, when reading this book, for the sake of truth and salvation, can bear witness to the truth of this quotation. The 29th chapter of Isa. is still plainer and much of it has been fulfilled in the eyes of this generation. It reads:—Wo to Ariel, to Ariel, the city where David dwelt! add ye year to year; let them kill sacrifices. Yet I will distress Ariel, and there shall be heaviness and sorrow: and it shall be unto me as Ariel. and I will camp against thee round about, and will lay siege against thee with a mount, and I will raise forts against thee.—And thou shalt be brought down, and shalt speak out of the ground, and thy speech shall be low out of the dust, and thy voice shall be, as of one that hath a familiar spirit, out of the ground, and thy speech shall whisper out of the dust. Moreover, the multitude of thy strangers shall be like small dust, and the multitude of the terrible ones as chaff that passeth away: yea, it shall be at an instant suddenly. Thou shalt be visited by the Lord of hosts with thunder, and with earthquake, and great noise, with storm and tempest, and the flame of devouring fire. And the multitude of all the nations that fight against Ariel, even all that fight against her and her munition, and that distress her, shall be as a dream of a night-vision. It shall even be as when a hungry man dreameth, and behold, he eateth; but he awaketh, and his soul is empty: or as when a thirsty man dreameth, and behold he drinketh; but he awaketh, and behold he is faint, and his soul hath appetite: so shall the multitude of all the nations be, that fight against mount Zion. Stay yourselves, and wonder; cry ye out, and cry: they are drunken, but not with wine; they stagger, but not with strong drink. For the Lord hath poured out upon you the spirit of deep sleep, and hath closed your eyes: the prophets and your rulers, the seers hath he covered. And the vision of all is become unto you as the words of a book that is sealed, which men deliver to one that is learned, saying, Read this, I pray thee: and he saith, I cannot; for it is sealed: and the book is delivered unto him that is not learned, saying, Read this, I pray thee: and he saith, I am not learned.—Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honor me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men: Therefore behold, I will proceed to do a marvelous work among this people, even a marvelous work and a wonder: for the wisdom of their wise shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent shall be hid. Wo unto them that seek deep to hide their counsel from the Lord, and their works are in the dark, and they say, Who seeth us? and who knoweth us? Surely your turning of things upside down shall be esteemed as the potter’s clay: for shall the work say of him that made it, he made me not? or shall the thing framed say of him that framed it, he had no understanding? Is it not yet a very little while, and Lebanon shall be turned into a fruitful field, and the fruitful field shall be esteemed as a forest? And in that day shall the deaf hear the words of the book, and the eyes of the blind shall see out of obscurity, and out of darkness. The meek also shall increase their joy in the Lord, and the poor among men shall rejoice in the Holy One of Israel. For the terrible one is brought to nought and the scorner is consumed, and all that watch for iniquity are cut off: that make a man an offender for a word, and lay a snare for him that reproveth in the gate, and turn aside the just for a thing of nought. Therefore thus saith the Lord, who redeemed Abraham, concerning the house of Jacob, Jacob shall not now be ashamed, neither shall his face now wax pale. But when he seeth his children, the work of my hands, in the midst of him, they shall sanctify my name, and sanctify the Holy One of Jacob, and shall fear the God of Israel. They also that erred in spirit shall come to understanding, and they that murmured shall learn doctrine. He that cannot see that the prophet, in this chapter, spoke of a book that should come out of the ground, would scarcely be convinced if a man should rise from the dead. In addition to the above, however, Isa. says, Drop down, ye heavens, from above, and let the skies pour down righteousness: let the earth open, and let them bring forth salvation, and let righteousness spring up together; I the Lord have created it. Ezek. also says: Moreover, thou son of man, take thee one stick, and write upon it, for Judah, and for the children of Israel his companions: then take another stick, and write upon it, for Joseph, the stick of Ephraim, and all the house of Israel his companions: and join them one to another into one stick; and they shall become one in thy hand. The bible for the stick of Judah, and the book of Mormon for the stick of Joseph, in the hand of Ephraim, is all that need be said, upon these words, for no man ever pretended to know, (till the book of Mormon came,) any thing about the tribe of Joseph, or his history, notwithstanding God had declared by the mouth of Hosea, That he had written the great things of his law to Ephraim; and they are counted a strange thing. The ancient and modern practice of reading sticks, wants but little elucidation. The common school-boy ought to know, that anciently, they wrote on parchment for common use, and rolled it round a stick; and, latterly, newspapers are put into a stick for public utility. But let us turn again to the book. The simplicity of the language, and the purity of the ideas, carry a holy spirit, as well as breathe an air of religion, that soothes the heart and feeds the soul of every son and daughter of God. Read the following:—And I beheld a rod of iron; and it extended along the bank of the river, and led to the tree by which I stood. And I also beheld a straight and narrow path, which came along by the rod of iron, even to the tree by which I stood; and it also led by the head of the fountain, unto a large and spacious field, as if it had been a world; and I saw numberless concourses of people; many of whom were pressing forward, that they might obtain the path which led unto the tree by which I stood. And it came to pass that they did come forth, and commence in the paths which led to the tree. And it came to pass that there arose a mist of darkness; yea, even an exceeding great mist of darkness, insomuch that they which had commenced in the path, did lose their way, that they wandered off, and were lost. And it came to pass that I beheld others pressing forward; and they came forth and caught hold of the end of the rod of iron; and they did press forward through the mist of darkness, clinging to the rod of iron, even until they did come forth and partake of the fruit of the tree. And after that they had partaken of the fruit of the tree, they did cast their eyes about as if they were ashamed. And I also cast my eyes round about, and beheld, on the other side of the river of water, a  great and spacious building; and it stood as it were in the air, high above the earth; and it was filled with people, both old and young, both male and female; and their manner of dress was exceeding fine; and they were in the attitude of mocking and pointing their fingers towards those which had come at, and were partaking of the fruit.
|Title||The Book of Mormon.|
|Abstract||A discussion of the teachings of the Book of Mormon, and comparison to the Bible.|
|Publisher Original||W. W. Phelps & Co.|
|Digital Publisher||Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship at Brigham Young University|
|Owning Institution||Brigham Young University|
|Subject||Book of Mormon--History;|
|Geographic Place Name||Independence (Mo.);|
|Keywords||Jesus Christ; other sheep; ancient records;|
|Source||The Evening and the Morning Star (Independence, Missouri) 1 no. 8 (January 1833) : [57-59].|
|Related Works||Book of Mormon--Title Page; see HBLL Digital Collections: http://contentdm.lib.byu.edu/u?/NCMP1820-1846,5765|
|Language||English; eng; en;|
|Patron Usage Instructions||http://www.lib.byu.edu/genericnote_copyright.html|
|Copyright status/owner||Public Domain, Courtesy Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship at Brigham Young University|
|Conversion specifications||E-Image Data Scanpro 1000; 600dpi; pdf|
|Full text||Transcriptions provided by the Maxwell Institute|