If you go on a mission to preach the gospel with lightness and frivolity in your hearts, looking for this and that, and to learn what is in the world, and not having your minds riveted - yes, I may say riveted - on the cross of Christ, you will go and return in vain...Let your minds be centered on your missions, and labor earnestly to bring souls to Christ.
The Lord created you and me for the purpose of becoming Gods like Himself; when we have been proved in our present capacity, and been faithful with all things He puts into our possession. We are created, we are born for the express purpose of growing up from the low estate of manhood, to become Gods like unto our Father in heaven. That is the truth about it, just as it is. The Lord has organized mankind for the express purpose of increasing in that intelligence and truth, which is with God, until he is capable of creating worlds on worlds, and becoming Gods, even the sons of God
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My experience has taught me, and it has become a principle with me, that it is never any benefit to give out and out, to man or woman, money, food, clothing, or anything else. If they are able-bodied and can work and earn what they need, when there is anything on earth for them to do. This is my principle and I try to act upon it. To pursue a contrary course would ruin any community in the world and make them idlers.
My knowledge is, if you will follow the teachings of Jesus Christ and his Apostles, as recorded in the New Testament, every man and woman will be put in possession of the Holy Ghost. . . . They will know things that are, that will be, and that have been. They will understand things in heaven, things on the earth, and things under the earth, things of time, and things of eternity, according to their several callings and capacities.
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What a learned idea! Jesus, our elder brother, was begotten in the flesh by the same character that was in the garden of Eden, and who is our Father in Heaven. Now, let all who may hear these doctrines, pause before they make light of them, or treat them with indifference, for they will prove their salvation or damnation
We are in a great school, and we should be diligent to learn, and continue to store up the knowledge of heaven and of earth, and read good books, although I cannot say that I would recommend the reading of all books, for it is not all books which are good. Read good books, and extract from them wisdom and understanding as much as you possibly can, aided by the Spirit of God. (JD 12:124)
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Our faith is concentrated in the Son of God, and through him in the Father; and the Holy Ghost is their minister to bring truths to our remembrance, to reveal new truths to us, and teach, guide, and direct the course of every mind, until we become perfected and prepared to go home, where we can see and converse with our Father in Heaven.
... I believe the Father came down from heaven, as the apostles said he did, and begat the Saviour of the world; for he is the ONLY-begotten of the Father, which could not be if the Father did not actually beget him in person.... I believe the Father came down in His tabernacle and begat Jesus Christ.
I want to say to every man, the Constitution of the United States, as formed by our fathers, was dictated, was revealed, was put into their hearts by the Almighty, who sits enthroned in the midst of the heavens; although unknown to them, it was dictated by the revelations of Jesus Christ, and I tell you in the name of Jesus Christ, it is as good as I could ask for.
Monogamy, or restrictions by law to one wife, is no part of the economy of heaven among men. Such a system was commenced by the founders of the Roman Empire... Rome became the mistress of the world, and introduced this order of monogamy wherever her sway was acknowledged. Thus this monogamic order of marriage, so esteemed by modern Christians as a hold sacrament and divine institution, is nothing but a system established by a set of robbers.
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I never cared but for one thing, and that is, simply to know that I am right before my Father in Heaven. If I am this moment, this day doing the things God requires of my hands, and precisely where my Father in Heaven wants me to be, I care no more about tomorrow than though it would never come.
The Americans as a nation are killing themselves with their vices and high living. As much as a man ought to eat in half an hour they swallow in three minutes gulping down their food like the [dog] under the table which when a chunk of meat is thrown down to it swallows it before you can say 'twice.' If you want a reform carry out the advice I have just given you. Dispense with your multitudinous dishes, and, depend upon it, you will do much towards preserving your families from sickness, disease and death.
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There is neither man or woman in this Church who is not on a mission. That mission will last as long as they live, and it is to do good, to promote righteousness, to teach the principles of truth, and to prevail upon themselves and everybody around them to live those principles that they may obtain eternal life
I am more afraid that this people have so much confidence in their leaders that they will not inquire for themselves of God whether they are led by him. I am fearful they settle down in a state of blind self security. Let every man and woman know, by the whispering of the Spirit of God to themselves, whether their leaders are walking in the path the Lord dictates, or not.
I have a word to say to my sisters. When I reflect upon the duties and responsibilities devolving upon our mothers and sisters, and the influence they wield, I look upon them as the mainspring and soul of our being here. It is true that man is first. Father Adam was placed here as king of the earth, to bring it into subjection. But when Mother Eve came she had a splendid influence over him. A great many have thought it was not very good; I think it was excellent" (Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 199).).
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If I do not know the will of my Father, and what He requires of me in a certain transaction, if I ask Him to give me wisdom concerning any requirement in my life, or in regard to my own course, or that of my friends, my family, my children, or those that I preside over, and get no answer from Him, and then do the very best that my judgement will teach me, He is bound to own and honor that transaction, and He will do so to all intents and purposes.
When all the other children of Adam have had the privilege of receiving the Priesthood, and of coming into the kingdom of God, and of being redeemed from the four quarters of the earth, and HAVE RECEIVED THEIR RESURRECTION FROM THE DEAD, then it will be time enough to remove the curse from Cain and his posterity.
Every organization of our government, the best government in the world, is crumbling to pieces. Those who have it in their hands are the ones who are destroying it. How long will it be before the words of the prophet Joseph will be fulfilled? He said if the Constitution of the United States were saved at all it must be done by this people. It will not be many years before these words come to pass.
In these respects we differ from the Christian world, for our religion will not clash with or contradict the facts of science in any particular... whether the Lord found the earth empty and void, whether he made it out of nothing or out of the rude elements; or whether he made it in six days or in as many millions of years, is and will remain a matter of speculation in the minds of men unless he give revelation on the subject. If we understood the process of creation there would be no mystery about it, it would be all reasonable and plain, for there is no mystery except to the ignorant.
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While brother Joseph was referring to the provinces of God, I was led to reflect that there is no act, no principle, no power belonging to the Deity that is purely philosophical. The birth of the Saviour was as natural as are the births of our children; it was the result of natural action. He partook of flesh and blood - was begotten of his Father, as we were of our fathers.
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I will tell you whom to vote for: We will vote for the principles of civil and religious liberty, the man who knows the most and who has the best heart and brain for a statesman; and we do not care a farthing whether he is a Whig, a Democrat, a Barnburner, a Republican, or a New Light or anything else.
Of the time that is allotted to man here on the earth there is none to lose or waste. After suitable rest and relaxation there is not a day, hour or minute that we should spend in idleness, but every minute of every day of our lives we should strive to improve our minds and to increase the faith of the holy Gospel, in charity, patience, and good works, that we may grow in the knowledge of the truth as it is spoken and prophesied of and written about.
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It yields solid satisfaction to hear men testify of the truth of the Gospel. It is always peculiarly interesting to me to hear the Saints tell their experience. It is to me one of the best sermons to hear men and women relate to each other how the Lord has wrought upon their understanding, and brought them into the path of truth, life, and salvation.
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Whether surrounded with error or truth, the web woven around them in childhood's days lasts, and seldom wears threadbare...The traditions of my earliest recollection are so forcible upon me that it seems impossible for me to get rid of them. And so it is with others; hence the necessity of correct training in childhood.
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You might prove doctrine from the Bible till doomsday, and it would merely convince a people, but would not convert them. You might read the Bible from Genesis to Revelations, and prove every iota that you advance, and that alone would have no converting influence upon the people. Nothing short of a testimony by the power of the Holy Ghost would bring light and knowledge to them -- bring them in their hearts to repentance. Nothing short of that would ever do.
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Angels are those beings who have been on an earth like this, and have passed through the same ordeals that we are now passing through. They have kept their first estate far enough to preserve themselves in the Priesthood. They did not so violate the law of the Priesthood and condemn themselves to the sin against the Holy Ghost as to be finally lost. They are not crowned with the celestial ones. They are persons who have lived upon an earth, but did not magnify the Priesthood in that high degree that many others have done who have become Gods, even the sons of God.
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To be gentle and kind, modest and truthful, to be full of faith and integrity, doing no wrong is of God; goodness sheds a halo of loveliness around every person who possesses it, making their countenances beam with light, and their society desirable because of its excellency. They are loved of God, of holy angels, and of all the good earth, while they are hated, envied, admired, and feared by the wicked.
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We believe we are entitled to the gift of the Holy Ghost in extent according to the discretion and wisdom of God and our faithfulness; which gift brings all things to our remembrance, past, present, and to come, that are necessary for us to know, and as far as our minds are prepared to receive the knowledge of God revealed by that all-wise Agent. The Holy Ghost is God's minister, and is delegated to visit the sons and daughters of men. All intelligent beings pertaining to this earth are instructed from the same source.
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Let me give you a definition in brief. Your endowment is, to receive all those ordinances in the house of the Lord, which are necessary for you, after you have departed this life, to enable you to walk back to the presence of the Father, passing the angels who stand as sentinels, being enabled to give them the key words, the signs and tokens, pertaining to the holy Priesthood, and gain your eternal exaltation in spite of earth and hell
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There are multitudes of pure and holy spirits waiting to take tabernacles, now what is our duty. To prepare tabernacles for them; to take a course that will not tend to drive those spirits into families of the wicked, where they will be trained in wickedness, debauchery, and every species of crime. It is the duty of every righteous man and woman to prepare tabernacles for all the spirits they can. This is the reason why the doctrine of plurality of wives was revealed, that the noble spirits which are waiting for tabernacles might be brought forth.
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Now hear it, O inhabitants of the earth, Jew and Gentile, Saint and sinner! When our father Adam came into the garden of Eden, he came into it with a celestial body, and brought Eve, one of his wives, with him. He helped to make and organize this world. He is Michael, the Archangel, the Ancient of Days! about whom holy men have written and spoken -- He is our Father, and our God, and the only God with whom we have to do. Every man upon the earth, professing Christians or non professing, must hear it, and will know it sooner or later.
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Why was Joseph Smith persecuted? Why was he hunted from neighborhood to neighborhood, from city to city, and from State to State, and at last suffered death? Because he received revelations from the Father, from the Son, and was ministered to by holy angels, and published to the world the direct will of the Lord concerning his children on the earth.
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If the Latter-day Saints will walk up to their privileges, and exercise faith in the name of Jesus Christ, and live in the enjoyment of the fullness of the Holy Ghost constantly day by day, there is nothing on the face of the earth that they could ask for, that would not be given to them. The Lord is waiting to be very gracious unto this people, and to pour out upon them riches, honor, glory, and power, even that they may possess all things according to the promises He has made through His apostles and prophets.
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You have heard me say, a great many times, that there is not that man or woman in this Church, and there never was and never will be, who turn up their noses at the counsel that is given them from the First Presidency, but who, unless they repent of and refrain from such conduct will eventually go out of the Church and go to hell, every one of them
You see some classes of the human family that are black, uncouth, uncomely, disagreeable and low in their habits, wild, and seemingly deprived of nearly all the blessings of the intelligence that is generally bestowed upon mankind....Cain slew his brother. Can might have been killed, and that would have put a termination to that line of human beings. This was not to be, and the Lord put a mark upon him, which is the flat nose and black skin.
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Children need directing and teaching what is right in a kind, affectionate manner How often we see parents demand obedience, good behavior, kind words, pleasant looks, a sweet voice and a bright eye from a child or children when they themselves are full of bitterness and scolding! How inconsistent and unreasonable this is!
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