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age and country in which they lived were prepared to receive. On this basis we can account for those semi-prophets who have appeared from time to time among the various peoples of our race, We can understand Budda among the Hindoos; Socrates and Plato among the Greeks; Confucius among the Chinese; Mohammed among the Arabians; Woden among the Scandinavians-all these, under this doctrine of inspiration, constitute a great brotherhood of semi-prophets raised up of God to teach so much of truth as the part of the world in which they moved was prepared to receive. And though the sum of their teaching was inferior to the gospel of Jesus Christ, yet was it far in advance of the errors they overthrew, and at least kept the races of men among whom they lived within the twilight of God's truth, and saved them from absolute darkness.

Referring again to the peoples who inhabited the western hemisphere, I remark that whatever else may be said of those hundreds of millions of people they were at least the children of God; for Paul tells us that

"God hath made of one blood all nations, of men; and hath determined the times before appointed and the bounds of their habitation, that they should seek the Lord, if happily they might feel after him and find him."

This proclaims the unity of the human race-"God hath made of one blood all nations of men." All are equally his children. All have the blessed privilege of feeling after him and finding him; for “He is not far from every one of us, for in him we live and move and have our being."

The people of the western hemisphere, then, being as much the children of God as those races occupying the eastern hemisphere, with the same privilege of seeking God and finding him, it is not improbable that some of them gained access to his presence as Moses, Elijah and others did in the east. They did find him; and to the Prophet Joseph Smith their records were revealed, in which are to be found the revelations of God to them. The Church presents that record, the Book of Mormon, to the world as a new volume of scripture, to bear witness for the truth of God's existence; for the verity of Christ being the Redeemer of the world; for the gospel of Jesus Christ being the power of God unto salvation. All

these grand and fundamental truths were taught through inspired prophets in the western hemisphere as well as to men in the eastern hemisphere; for God was mindful of them and desired their salvation.

The bringing forth of this new volume of scripture—this record of the ancient inhabitants of America—part of the scriptures had among the Nephites, as the people were called, enlarges the conception of God's great justice in dealing with his children in the matter of revelation. But the Book of Mormon like the Bible, is but the history of what God reveal to those people of the western hemisphere in former times, and while containing general truths, fundamental doctrines that are common to all dispensations of the gospel, and will never be different from what they are there revealed to be, yet The Church holds to a living inspiration; and teaches the present existence and continuance of inspiration and revelation in The Church. And while regarding the scriptures of all past ages and among all peoples as revealing the being the character and the laws of God, and "profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,” yet there is in existence in the Church of Christ the living oracles, with the power of direct communication with God now; and God from time to time makes known his will and purposes through them, and the course he would have his people pursue in the midst of the ever changing conditions that surround them; and those living oracles and that continuous stream of revelation is making scripture to-day just as surely as like revelation and living oracles in the Church in past ages made scripture.

It is a mistake to suppose that written scripture ever made the Church of Christ. It was the Church of Christ always that made scripture, and it is making scripture to-day; for the Lord has said that whatsoever is uttered by his priesthood when moved upon by the Holy Ghost

"Shall be scripture, shall be the will of the Lord, shall be the mind of the Lord, shall be the word of the Lord, shall be the voice of the Lord, and the power of God unto salvation."

And that is the claim and authority of the Church of Christ. That is, The Church has both for her members

and for the world, the present, living word of God; and whatsoever the servants of God, who constitute his holy priesthood, do and say under the inspiration of the Holy Ghost here spoken of, is the voice of God unto the people. It has been that voice that has founded The Church:-which has given to her both her organization and her doctrine. It has guided her through all the trials of the past. It will preserve her through all the changing conditions and difficulties of the future. It is the source of her strength, the secret of her power, the means of her growth, the sheet anchor of her safety; for it is the means through which the wisdom and strength of God are imparted to her.


This is “Mormonism"-this the claim of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints: She declares a new dispensation of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Not a new religion, but a new dispensation of the old religion; a dispensation made necessary because of the world's departure from the religion of Jesus Christ. A dispensation made necessary because the authority of God was taken from among men who had rendered themselves unworthy of it. A dispensation made necessary because neither the gospel nor the Church of Jesus Christ was on the earth, and hence both had to be restored by opening again the heavens and giving to men a new revelation of God's will, a new dispensation of his power or authority.

The Church founded by these revelations teaches the knowledge of the true God, and calls mankind to worship him "who made the heavens and the earth, and the seas and the fountains of water."*

She teaches the true relationship between man and God.

She teaches the true gospel of Jesus Christ in its fullness, the sacraments of which she administers by divine authority.

Her organization is the same as in The Church in former times, the main outlines of which may be traced in the New Testament, consisting of apostles, and prophets, seventies, elders, bishops, teachers, deacons, etc. — the whole body fitly

*Rev. ch. 14:6, 7.

joined together, and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love."*

The spirit of her government is of that same order manifested in the precept and example of the Master-having the source of its power in knowledge, in patience, in love unfeigned.

The Church has a message for the world. Unto her is assigned the duty of crying repentance to men and warning the inhabitants of the earth of the judgments of God which will overtake the wicked when the Lord Jesus shall appear in the glory of his Father to reward every man according to his works.

To The Church has been assigned the duty of preparing the earth for the glorious appearance of the Lord Jesus Christ-her message is—Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.


What art thou, Mighty One! and where thy seat?

Thou broodest on the calm that cheers the land,

And thou dost bear within thine awful hands
The rolling thunders and the lightnings fleet;
Stern on thy dark-wrought car of cloud and wind,

Thou guid'st the northern storm at night's dead noon,

Or, on the red wing of the fierce Monsoon,
Disturb'st the sleeping giant of the Ind.
In the drear silence of the polar span

Dost thou repose? Or in the solitude
Of sultry tracts, where the lone caravan

Hears nightly howl the tiger's hungry brood?
Vain thought! the confines of his throne to trace,
Who glows through all the fields of boundless space.


*Eph 4: 16.






The genius of some men is destructive, of others constructive. A Ghengis Khan, an Attila or a Timour may have manifested in large measure the qualities which render men distinguished among their fellows:-great executive power, bold personality, and efficient leadership. But in each case the energy put forth and the work accomplished are destructive, resulting in the misery and death of men, with little or no compensation in the way of organizing empires or extending beneficient rule. In the case of other great conquerors, these two elements, the constructive and the destructive, are blended. In a Washington the first is predominant, in a Napoleon, the second. Therefore, we call Washington a patriot, and Napoleon ambitious. The more the constructive element overbalances the destructive, the greater the degree of patriotism, whether it be in the direction of statesmanship, industrial organization, or religious reform.

It will be my pleasing task in this paper to trace the early development of one whose work was purely constructive in its nature. Or I might rather say, re-constructive, for it was his especial labor to build up anew the pure faith of old to take the place of crumbling orthodoxy.

In the good old days of New England, when conditions, social, political, and religious, were rapidly adapting them

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