Highly Important Religious Intelligence from the Far West— Progress of the Mor-mon Empire on the banks of the Mighty Mississippi.
On Wednesday we received from our energetic, won-derful and pious correspondent on the banks of the Mississippi, some of the most important religions intelligence, which we ever gave to this mighty Atlantic community— wise men and ineffable block-heads. It is the first prophetic Epistle of the modern or Mormon Twelve Apostles, addressed to the wicked inhabitants of the earth, including all the respectable rascality of Wall street and its environs.
Read this epistle, ye sinners of all classes—digest it— tremble through all the nerves—and repent, or prepare for the wrath to come.
The Mormon movement is one of the most curi-ous of the present age. It is inexplicable on the ordinary principles of philosophy. It is the begin-ning of a new dispensation, or it is nothing. There can be no mistake in Joe Smith. He is a master spirit—and his ambition is to found a reilgions em-pire, that will reach the uttermost ends of the earth. He has given the world a new Bible and is now busily engaged in founding a new kingdom of the faithful. In Nauvoo, and that neigh-bourhood, the Mormons number ten thousand souls, besides much cattle. Their moral system is good. Temperance, almost to teetotalism, is one of the corner stones of their moral system. Chewing to-bacco is prohibited— so is lying and going to law. At this moment, they have Apostles in England, France and Germany, besides a deputation on the road to the Holy Land.
What is to be the end of all this fresh outpouring of the spirit? Will it not replenish the earth with saints? Is not the millenium at hand? May heaven have mercy upon the souls of all men! Read the following, and repent, ye sinners!
AN EPISTLE OF THE TWELVE,
TO THE BRETHREN SCATTERED ABROAD ON THE CONTINENT OF AMERICA, GREETING:
It seemeth good to us to write unto you at this time concerning the great things of the kingdom of our God, and more especially as we have been called upon by the late General Conference so to do; that the work may not be hindered, but that all may understand their privilege and duty in this day of glorious events, so that by exercising themselves therein, they may attain unto those blessings which God has in store for his people in the last days.
We have abundant occasion, and we rejoice exceed-ingly at the privilege we have had of beholding so many thousands of our brethren and sisters as were assembled at the late confercnce, and for the most perfect harmony and good feeling which prevailed throughout all their deliberations; for the great amount of valuable instruc-tions by President Joseph Smith and others; and for the disposition which we have seen manifested by all who were present to carry into effect all those noble plans and principles which were derived from heaven, and have been hand d down to earth, to carry forward the great and glorious work which is already commenced, and which must be consummated to secure the salvation of Israel.
While the minutes of the General Conference are be-fore you, which will be read with interest by every lo-ver of Zion, we shall recapitulate some items," and detail more particularly to the understanding of those who had not the privilege of being present on that interest-ing occasion, the past, present and future situation and prospects of the church, and the stakes, and those things which immediately concern their best interests.
A short time since and the saints were fleeing before their enemies. Whips, imprisonments, tortures and death stared them in the face, and they were compelled to seek an asylum in a land of strangers. They sought, they found it within the peaceful bosom of Illinois; a State whose citizens are inspired with a love of liberty; whose souls are endued with those noble principles of charity and benevolence which ever bid the stranger welcome and minister to his wants: in this State, whose soil is viewing with its citizens in all that is good and lovely, the saints have found a resting place, where, freed from tyranny and mobs, they are beginning to real-ise the fulfilment of the ancient prophets, "they shall build houses and inhabit them, plant vineyards and eat the fruit thereof, having none to molest or make afraid."
In this city the church has succeeded in securing sev-eral extensive plats of land, which have been laid out in city lots, a part of which have been sold, a part has been distributed to the widow and the orphan, and a part remains for sale. These lots are for the inheritance of the saints, a resting place for the church, a habitation for the God of Jacob; for here he has commanded a house to be built unto his name where he may manifest himself unto his people as in former times, when he caused the ark, the tabernacle and the temple to be reared, and the cloud and the fire to rest down thereon; and not that the temple be built only, but that it be completed quickly, and that no more general conference be held, till it shall be held therein; and that the Nauvoo House be finished for the accommodation of the brethren from afar, and the stranger who shall come up hither to inquire after the work of the Lord and worship in his Temple.
Scores of brethren in this city, have offered to board one and two laborers each till the Temple is completed; many have volunteered to labor continually, and the brethren generally are giving one-tenth part of their time, or one-tenth part of their income, according to cir-cumstances while those sisters, who can do nothing more, are knitting socks and mittens, and preparing gar-ments for the laborers, so that they may be made as com-fortable as possible during the coming winter. In view of these things we would invite our brethren for many miles distant around us, to send in their teams for draw-ing stone, lumber, and materials for the buildings; and at the same time load their wagons with all kinds of grain and meat, provision and clothing, and hay and provender in abundance, that the laborer faint not, and the team be made strong; also that journey men stone cutters, &c. come, bringing their tools with them, and enlist in the glorious enterprise.
Most of the plats in this city before referred to, as well as several farms and large lots of land in this and the ad-joining counties are paid for and are secured to the church by good and sufficient titles; while the town plat for the town of Warren near Warsaw, is secured on such conditions that the brethren can be accommodated with lots of very reasonable terms; but the large plat in Nauvoo, purchased by Messrs. Hotchkiss, Tuttle &Co. of Now Haven, Conn., remains unpaid for, and the time has now arrived, when it is wry desirable on the part of the church, as well as on the part of the gentlemen of "whom it was purchased, that payment should be made and a warrantee title secured; to accomplish which we have been called upon by the united voice of the Gene-ral Conference to address the churches in the eastern states, to advise with the brethren in those regions, and devise ways and means whereby this debt may be liqui-dated, Hotchkiss &Co. satisfied, the plat secured to the church, and the brethern in the east at the same time transfer their real estate from the place where it now is, to this city or region of country, according to their de-sire.
The contract for the "Hotchkiss purchase" in Nauvoo, consisting of upwards of five hundred acres, was entered into, on, or about the 9th of August. 1839, for the specified sum of fifty three thousand five hundred dollars," and se-curity was given to Messrs. R. H. Hotchkiss, Smith Tut-tle, and John Gillet, for the amount of the same in two notes of equal amount, one pay able in ten years, and the other in twenty years from the date thereof, signed by Messrs. Hyrim Smith, Joseph Smith, and Sidney Rigdon. In August last, interest to the amount of six thousand dollars or upwards, had accumulated on said notes which it has not been in the power of the church to pay up to the present time. The nature of this purchase, and the situation of the church is such that it is necessary that the note should be taken up the interest stopped, and a warrantee title secured immediately; and a correspon-dence is now in progress with Messrs. Hotchkiss & Co. to effect this thing, and bring forward a final settlement.
But, say you, what can we do to accomplish this great and desirable object? Let the brethren in the eastern states, who have lands which they wish to dispose of, so that they may remove hither and secure to themselves an inheritance among the saints, either in the cities or farms in the vicinity, and are willing to have their lauds in the east made over to Messrs. Hotchkiss & Co. towards the payment of the foregoing notes, communicate with us immediately, at this place, stating to us the extent and value of their property. Then as soon as we shall have received communications concerning property sufficient to cancel the obligations, and the necessary prelimina-ries are understood with Messrs. Hotchkiss & Co. we will dispatch an agent to New Haven, to complete the nego-ciation, transfer your property, take up the notes, and secure the deed; and those whose property is thus trans-ferred can have the value thereof here, in city lots, or lands in the vicinity; and thus your property will prove to you as good as money, inasmuch as you desire to emi-grate, and you will no longer be obliged to tarry afar off, because that money is so scarce you cannot sell and get our pay. If there are those among you to whom God as given in abundance, and they desire to appropriate some portion thereof for the benefit of his people, for the redemption of Zion; for a blessing to the widows of those who have been slain for the word of God, and been bu-ried in a well, for a sustenance to their fatherless children, and provide for them a habitation, they cannot do it more effectually than by devoting a portion of their sustenance to wards liquidating this claim.
To those brethren who live so far distant that they cannot send in their loaded teams, and yet desire to a-ssist in building the Lord's House, we would say, father yourselves together and bring of your substance your silver, and gold, and apparel, and of your superabundance cast into the treasury of the Lord, and see if he will not pour you out a blessing till there is not room enough to receive.
Brethren, the blessings of the kingdom are for you for the body of Christ, for all the members, and God will help those who will help themselves, and bless those who will bless each other, and do as they would be done unto. The gold and the silver is the Lords; all the trea-sures of the earth, the flocks and the herds of the fields and the cattle of the thousand hills are his; if he were hungry would he crave thy food, or thirsty would he ask thy drink"? Nay; he would only ask that which was his own, he would feast on his own flocks, and quench his thirst at his own springs. This God is the God of the saints, he is your God, and he has made you stewards of all that has been committed to you, and will require his own with usury; and will you not be faithful in a little that you may be made rulers over many cities? Yes, you will, we know you will.
The journeyings and gatherings, and buildings of the saints are nothing new, and as they are expecting look-ing, and praying for the completion of the dispensation of the fullness of times, they trust also expect that the progress will be onward or they will be of no avail, for what is not of faith is sin, and can you believe that God will hear your prayers, and bring you on your journey, gather you, and build your houses, and you not put forth one hand or make one exertion to help yourselves? No; therefore inasmuch as the saints believe that father Abraham journeyed to a distant land, at the command of the Highest, where himself and household (whose house-hold we are, if we keep the commandments) might en-joy the fruits of their labors unmolested, and worship the God of heaven according to the dictates of their own conscience and his law. That his seed afterwards gath-ered to Canaan, the Land of Promise; that David was commanded to build a house, where the son of man might hare a place to lay his head, and the disciples be endued with power from on high, and were with one ac-cord in one place; they must also believe that this dis-pensation comprehends all the great works of all former dispensations; and that the children must gather as did the fathers; must build a house, where they may be en-dued, and be found together worshipping and doing as their fathers did, when Jehovah spake and the angels of heaven ministered unto them; and if these things are not in this generation, then we have not arrived at the dispensation of the fullness of times as we anticipate, and our faith and prayers are vain.
Is it possible that we labor in vain, and toil for nought, and that we shall be disappointed at the last? No, we know assuredly that the set time to favor Zion has come and her sons and daughters shall rejoice in her glory. The time has come when the great Jehovah would have a resting place on earth, a habitation for his chosen, where his law shall be revealed, and his servants be endued from on high, to bring together the honest in heart from the four winds; where the saints may enter the baptis-mal font for their dead relations, so that they may be judged according to men in the flesh, and live according to God in the spirit, and come forth in the celestial king-dom; a place over which the heavenly messengers may watch and trouble the waters as in days of old, so that when the sick are put therein they shall be made whole; a place where all the ordinances shall be made manifest and the saints shall unite in the songs of Zion, even praise, thanksgiving, and hallelujahs to God and the Lamb, that he has wrought put their deliverance, and bound Satan fast in chains.
What then shall we do? Let us all arise, and with one united and mighty exertion, by the strength of Israel's God, oppose the powers of darkness, and every being and principle that may rise up against us, and complete the work already commenced. Let us not for a moment lend an ear to evil and designing men who would sub-vert the truth, and blacken the character of the servant of The Most High God, by publishing abroad that the pro-phet is enriching himself on the spoils of the brethren. When Brother Joseph stated to the general conference the amount and situation of the property of the church, of which he is trustee in trust by the united voice of the church, he also stated the amount of his own possessions on earth; and what do you think it was? We will tell you; his old Charley, horse given him in Kirtland; two pet deer; two old turkeys and four young ones; the old cow given him by a brother in Missouri, his old Ma-jor dog; his wife, children, and a little household furni-ture; and this is the amount of the great possessions of that man whom God has called to lead his people in these last days: this the sum total of the great estates, the splendid mansions and noble living of him who has spent a life of toil and suffering, of privation and hardships, of impris-onments and chains, of dungeons and vexatious suits, and every kind of contumely, and contempts ungodly-men could heap upon him, and last of all report him as rolling in wealth and luxury which he had plundered from the spoils of those for whose good he had thus toil-ed and suffered. Who would be willing to suffer what he has suffered, and labor near twenty years as he has done, for the wealth he is in possession of?
Brethren, in view of all these things let us be up and doing. Let those in the eastern States use all diligence in communicating to us their ability to assist in the Hotchkiss payment, being assured that no exertion they can make, will equal what has already been made far them and the church generally; and let all the saints come up to the places of gathering, and with their mites and their abundance, as God has given them in trust, help to build up the old waste places, which have been thrown down for many generations, knowing, that when they are completed, they will belong unto the people of the Most High God, even the meek, the honest in heart, he shall possess all things in the due time of the Lord. Be not covetous, but deal in righteousness, for what the saints shall not possess by purchase and in righteous-ness they shall not possets, for no unrighteous thing can enter into the kingdom; therefore, beloved breth-ren, deal justly, love mercy, walk humbly before God, and whatever "your hands" find to do, do it with your might, keeping all the commandments, and then, whether in life or in death, all things will be yours, whether they be temples or lands, houses or vineyards, baptisms or enduements, revelations or healings, all things will be yours, for you will be Christ's and Christ is God's.
BRIGHAM YOUNG, JOHN TAYLOR,
HEBER C. KIMBALL, WILFORD WOODRUFF,
ORSON PRATT, GEO. A. SMITH,
LYMAN WIGHT, WILLARD RICHARDS.
NAUVOO, Oct. 12, 1841.
Click tabs to swap between content that is broken into logical sections.