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Then Joseph went to the open window, intending to leap out. Two bullets struck him, and he fell outward, exclaiming :
"O Lord, my God!"
As soon as he had struck the ground a mobber set him against a wellcurb a few feet from the jail, and then, by order of Col. Levi Williams, a mobber and Baptist preacher, four men sent bullets into his body.
Then the mob fled, and the whole town of Carthage with them, fearing the vengeance of the people of Nauvoo. But vengeance is the Lord's.
Willard Richards was not hurt. That night he spent in attending to his wounded brother, and watching over the dead bodies of the Prophet and` the Patriarch.
Joseph's. and Hyrum's earthly work was done, and the Master had called them away from the haunts of mobs and wicked men. They sealed their testimony with their blood. They had spent their lives in working for the salvation of their fellow-men, and even yet in a freer and grander sphere they are working for the cause of Christ and the Church.
Temple Building and Temple Work.
We call special attention to the quotation from the Prophet Joseph, which appears on the front page of this issue, and take this occasion to say a few words upon the subject set forth therein.
Temple building and Temple work were subjects upon which the Prophet Joseph Smith, during his whole life, laid particular stress. These matters were as much a part of the Gospel of Jesus Christ as were the initiatory principles and ordinances. They were set out by visions, revelations, and personal visits, to the Prophet Joseph, by heavenly authorities, as indispensable requisites to the eternal plan of salvation. When Elijah appeared to the Prophet and committed unto him the keys which gave him authority to teach these doctrines, and to officiate in the administration of the ordinances pertaining thereunto, he declared that the time had "fully come" when this important work was to be commenced. The spirit of this mission rested upon the Prophet Joseph, and indeed he was as faithful to this trust as he was to any other responsibility placed upon him by the Almighty. Before his martyrdom he seemed to have a premonition that his labors here were soon to end, for he urged the Saints to hasten the completion of the Nauvoo Temple in order that the Twelve might be thoroughly familiarized with the work therein to be performed, and fully empowered to carry on the same according to the commandments of God. Before the House of the Lord was finished and dedicated, the Prophet commenced the Temple work therein, and conferred upon the Twelve "all the ordinances, keys, covenants, endowments, and sealing ordinances of the Priesthood, and so set before them a pattern in all things pertaining to the sanctuary and the endowments therein."
This is the testimony of Apostle Parley P. Pratt, published over his
signature in January, 1845. (Millennial Star, Vol. 5, page 151.) Corroborating this statement, Apostle Orson Hyde testified at the trial of Sidney Rigdon* that in the spring of 1844 the Twelve were in council with the Prophet "almost every day for weeks," and that he conducted them "through every ordinance of the holy Priesthood," saying as he finished the work, "Now, if they kill me, you have got all the keys and all the ordinances, and you can confer them upon others, and the hosts of Satan will not be able to tear down the Kingdom as fast as you will be able to build it up," for "on your shoulders will rest the responsibility of leading this people."
According to Elder Hyde's testimony, the Prophet Joseph said, “I don't know what it is, but the Lord bids me hasten and give you your endowment before the Temple is finished."
Apostle Wilford Woodruff, in his review of Sidney Rigdon's trial published in the Millennial Star in December, 1844, confirmed the testimonies of Apostles Pratt and Hyde, not only as to the Prophet's conferring all the keys of the Priesthood upon the Twelve, but also as to their having to assume the "responsibility" of leading the people. Apostle Heber C. Kimball, at the October conference held in 1844, also testified publicly to the fact that the Prophet had in the spring of the same year fully endowed the Twelve, as stated by the three brethren mentioned. (Millennial Star, Vol. 5, page 123.) These four brethren were with the Prophet on the occasions mentioned, and received under his hands, together with the rest of the Twelve, the keys, ordinances, and powers which the Lord had sent Elijah to restore to man, and which He had impressed His servant to leave with the Church. So that the truth of their testimony cannot be questioned.
Temple building and Temple work, from almost the very instant of Elijah's visit to God's mouthpiece in this dispensation, became, as it were, the "war cry" of the Church, and followed it wherever it was driven. At Kirtland it was "Build a Temple"; at Far West, "Build a Temple"; at Independence, "Build a Temple"; at Nauvoo, "Build a Temple." And did it stop here? No! Although driven from its resting-place, as it had been oftentimes before, the Church was led by the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, with Brigham Young at its head, to another place of refuge, this time in the Rocky mountains. And there again the spirit of temple building and Temple work rested in mighty power upon the Latter-day Saints, in spite of the adverse circumstances with which they were surrounded. "Here we will build the Temple of our God," said President Brigham Young, as soon as his foot rested upon the desert soil of Salt Lake valley; and on the very spot designated, in perfect realization of his inspired hopes and aspirations, and in complete harmony with the mission. conferred upon him and his companions by the Prophet Joseph in the Nauvoo Temple, stands today the House of the Lord, a startling fulfillment
*Millennial Star, Vol. 5, page 104.
of this remarkable prophecy, and a complete vindication of President Young's divine calling to lead the Church of God.
And this is not all. Besides the Temple erected at Salt Lake City, three others have been completed within the state of Utah, in each of which, day after day and year after year, the Temple work revealed to Joseph Smith is ceaselessly and faithfully performed. These facts attest most forcibly the truth of the words of Elijah, that "The time had fully come" for its inauguration, and they also save the honored name and sacred memory of the great latter-day Prophet of the Lord to whom this work was revealed, from the most damaging and reproachful charge of "false prophet," which, according to Reorganiteism, he would be forced to bear, and that, too, without a word to offer in his defense. The apostate Strangites did not get together to effect their reorganization until sixteen years after the Prophet's death, and from that day until this a period of forty-seven years not a note has been sounded among them on Temple building or Temple work; whereas, the Church, under the direction of the Twelve, has erected four Temples, commencing the work before the Reorganized Strangite church was even dreamed of by its founders, and has, therefore, carried on the work in every detail as it was revealed to the Prophet by Elijah, and as the Prophet instructed and commanded the Twelve to do. According to the teachings and practice of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, God knew His business when He sent Elijah to restore the keys held by him to the Prophet; Elijah understood his business when he delivered these keys to the Prophet and told him that "the time had fully come" for him to begin to open up this work. The Prophet Joseph equally as well understood his business when he received the keys from Elijah, and pursuant to the instructions and commandments received, proceeded to erect Temples and use them for the sacred and holy purposes intended; the Twelve understood their business when, in keeping with the counsels they had received, they continued the work of building temples and of performing all the ordinances therein, just as God had revealed to His servant Joseph through the Prophet Elijah. But how different the matter appears from the Reorganized Strangite point of view. This organization, made up of excommunicated and apostate members of the Church, had no existence until sixteen years after the martyrdom of the Prophet, during which time the Church organized by the Prophet Joseph had been driven to the west, and under the leadership of the Twelve, who were duly qualified and authorized, had continued the work reveald by Elijah. The spirit of this all-important matter, which rested upon the Church at Kirtland, Independence, Far West, and Nauvoo, in the days of Joseph Smith, followed these leaders to the valleys of the Rockies, and the same "war cry" was continued there just as it had been in the east. At Salt Lake City it was, "Build a Temple"; at St. George, "Build a Temple"; at Logan, "Build a Temple"; at Manti, "Build a Temple." And still, notwithstanding that all these holy sanctuaries have been completed and put to
constant service, the Church, in response to the inspiration which one would naturally expect and which really ought to follow in the wake of Elijah's mission, continues to this day to sound the "war cry, "Build more Temples," throughout its entire system. Truly, the words of the Prophet to the Twelve, that "the hosts of Satan will not be able to tear down the Kingdom as fast as you will build it up," have been literally fulfilled, for indeed has the Almighty sustained the Twelve in their efforts to discharge the “responsibility" of leading His Church. But what about the position of the reorganized Strangite faction in relation to this matter? If their contention that they are the true Church be correct, then for sixty-three years Temple building and Temple work have been dead issues, and so far as present prospects are concerned there is no hope of their resurrction. If this contention be true, then God made a grave mistake in sending Elijah the Prophet to restore the keys pertaining to this part of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Again, if this contention be correct, then Elijah came to earth out of season, and his mission was absolutely in vain, and the Prophet Joseph blundered shamefully, first, in quoting to the world Elijah's words that "the time had fully come" for this work to commence; and, second, in following his instructions relative to its inauguration. And, worst of all, if such a thing could be worse, Jesus Himself misled the Prophet in giving revelations on Temple building, when such a work was not yet to be permanently established. Furthermore, the Prophet Daniel stands subject to the irrefutable charge of being a false prophet for declaring that when God should establish His Kingdom in the last days, it should stand forever, and never again be destroyed or given to another people.
If Temple work ever is to be embodied in the reorganized Strangite creed (it never has been at any time, for when they organized their church they knew nothing of it, and they have received no knowledge on the subject since that time from God), there are but two ways for them to obtain an understanding of this subject. One way is to go to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, with whom all the keys and powers pertaining to this work, and a perfect knowledge of all things thereunto belonging have continued in an unbroken and perfect successive order from the day of Elijah's visit; and the second way is for God to again send Elijah to the earth, which would be for the first time to the reorganized Strangite body, to give unto them the keys, powers, and commandments which he delivered to the Prophet Joseph, and which by him were delivered to the Twelve, and which were preserved in absolute purity and handed down to their successors, who today perpetuate the work as it was commenced under the immediate direction of Elijah. As to their adopting the first plan, there is no probability, as that would be a death blow self-inflicted to their institution; and there is no likelihood that the second plan will obtain, inasmuch as all knowledge relative to this work already has been revealed to and perpetuated in the true Church. The very fact that this
Church has preserved the order of the priesthood in these things, as well as in all others, is proof positive that it is the Church of God. The contrary view cannot be correct, for if it were true that God first established His Kingdom, then suffered it to be dstroyed, and then in re-establishing it again omitted to confer all the principles belong thereto which He had already before conferred, which is the position of the reorganized Strangite church, then God has wantonly sacrificed His own integrity and the integrity of His servants Daniel, Elijah, and the Prophet Joseph. In view of these facts, it is manifestly evident that the reformed Strangite church is therefore doomed to remain as it now stands-in absolute ignorance of all things pertaining to that all-important half of the whole Gospel of Jesus Christ which penetrates beyond this life and perfects, redeems, and glorifies the obedient and faithful deceased millions who, through no fault of theirs, have not heard and consequently not embraced the Gospel upon this earth. The Reorganite body is also cut off from any opportunity whatever, either of embracing themselves, or teaching to others, any of those holy ordinances and principles which God revealed through Elijah, whereby the Saints may qualify and prepare themselves for their inheritance in the Celestial Kingdom of their Father in Heaven. When one understands the magnitude and imperative importance of Temple building and Temple. work, it is then easy to comprehend the meaning of the Prophet Joseph Smith when he said, "THE GREATEST RESPONSIBILITY IN THIS WORLD THAT GOD HAS LAID UPON US IS TO SEEK AFTER OUR DEAD," and we are able also to realize why he was so anxious before his death to "CONFER UPON THE TWELVE ALL THE ORDINANCES, KEYS, COVENANTS, ENDOWMENTS, AND SEALING ORDINANCES OF THE PRIESTHOOD, AND SO SET BEFORE THEM A PATTERN IN ALL THINGS PERTAINING TO THE SANCTUARY AND THE ENDOWMENT THEREIN.”
It is true that the Reorganized church own the Kirtland temple; but it must not be overlooked that long before this edifice came into their possession it had been deserted by the Prophet Joseph and the Church, and that when the reorganized Strangite body entered suit for it, the Church allowed them to take it by default, because of its having been deserted and because the Church cared nothing about it. But now that the Reorganites possess it, what is it used for? A mere meeting-house. What do they know about the purposes for which it was erected? Absolutely nothing, nor do they claim any knowledge on the subject. They are as ignorant of the work revealed by God to Joseph Smith to be performed in that once sacred but afterward polluted edifice, as are all other man-made institutions upon the earth. And why is it so? Because the keys delivered to the Prophet Joseph Smith by Elijah were in turn conferred upon the Twelve Apostles, and their work, with the support and approval of God, has been perpetuated without intermission, in every detail, in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, whereas the apostate members who sixteen years after the death of the Prophet effected what they chose to call a "reorganization," possess little or no knowledge of these ordinances