At the end of my last post I provided a very brief, bullet point summation of significant events and revelatory declarations that documented the relationship that God had with his saints in the latter days.
It was not meant to be exhaustive, however it has since occured to me that there are a few other significant items that should be included which I have now done.
From time to time I will add to this list as I remember old discoveries or find new ones that merit inclusion to the list.
By the way, I am still waiting to hear from any LDS scholars and apologists to show me problems with the following documentation or my interpretation thereof.
[Added as an update: It is perplexing to me that with probably over 150 scholars and self proclaimed apologists between FARMS and FAIR that have submitted extensive articles defending all of the criticisms from a multitude of anti-Mormon critics, that not one has made an attempt to set me straight in the four or five years I have been blogging. What am I missing?]
Please don’t be shy.
- March of 1829 (section 5) The Church is beginning to come forth out of wilderness
- March of 1829 (section 5- Original Revelation published in Book of Commandments but deleted when 1835 D&C is published) Lord warns that He will deliver this generation over to Satan if they harden their hearts. (Although the following documentation will show that he made good on this conditional prophecy, this should not be seen as something that is hopeless, rather, God did it as a temporary chastisement that will end with a merciful deliverance for those that repent and return unto God. God delivered his people over to the enemy anciently as well but did not ultimately forsake them- Lev 26:25 2Kings 21:14 Nehemiah 9:27)
- April 6 1830 (Sections 20 & 21)The restored Church is formally organized by revelation as the “Church of Christ”
- October 1830 (Section 33) Church has been establish and called forth out of wilderness
- January 2, 1831. (Section 38) Saints commanded to go to Ohio to get the Law and Endowed with Power (Even though church and gospel was restored, they did not yet have the whole law or full power of the gospel)
- February of 1831 (Section 42) The Law of the Gospel is Given
- June 1831 Fulness of the Melchizedek Priesthood and Gospel Restored at Morley Farm (The priesthood restored by Peter James and John had never been referred to as Melchizedek Priesthood during the previous two years. Joseph would later reveal that the two lower priesthoods only had power to administer the law of the gospel but not in spirit. )
- February 1831 (Section 43) The Law of Succession and Succession Prophecy are given. The church is not to receive the teachings of anyone as revelations and commandments who has not been appointed by God through Joseph. Nobody will be appointed by God through Joseph Smith before Joseph is taken unless Joseph transgresses. (Section 90 will later confirm that another will be called by the Lord through Joseph prior to Joseph being taken “Through you shall the oracles be given to another” and finally, in Section 124 Hyrum is called by the Lord through Joseph, before Joseph is taken. Prior to the martyrdom, Joseph announces he will not prophecy for the church anymore, Hyrum is the sole prophet seer and revelator of the church before the martyrdom)
- August 1831 (Section 63 “I, the Lord, am angry with the wicked; I am holding my Spirit from the inhabitants of the earth…...and the saints also shall hardly escape; nevertheless, I, the Lord, am with them, and will come down in heaven from the presence of my Father and consume the wicked with unquenchable fire.And behold, this is not yet, but by and by. (Definition of Hardly: “Scarcely; barely; almost not.”
- September 11, 1831 (Section 64) The Lord declares that September 11 1836 is the drop dead date for the redemption of Zion in that generation.
- October 25 1831– (Section 66) Declaration that the Fulness of the Gospel had been received by William McClellin who had been ordained a High Priest (indicating that the fulness of the Gospel was synonymous with the fulness of the Priesthood. )
- November 1 1831 (Section One) Christ declares that the Church (which had now received the fulness of Melchizedek Priesthood) is the “True and Living Church” and that it will come forth again out of obscurity and darkness (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints did not exist at the time this pronouncement was made)
- 1832 ( Joseph Smith Letterbook 1, pp. 1-6. Published in: Dean Jessee, Personal Writings of Joseph Smith) Joseph Smith writes in his history and reveals the first two priesthoods received by angels, for the administration of the “law of the Gospel“. He then defines the third priesthood (received at the Morley Farm as the “High Priesthood after the holy order of the Son of the Living God… to preach the gospel in the administration and demonstration of the spirit“)
- April 26th 1832 (section 82) “And the anger of God kindleth against the inhabitants of the earth; and none doeth good, for all have gone out of the way“. (D&C 82:6 see also 35:1 & Moroni 10:12) Following that announcement, the leading high Priests are bound by covenant to administer the storehouse and law of consecration (This is the official start of a two year effort to live consecration that ultimately failed- see section 104 April 23th 1834)
- September 22-23 1832 (Section 84) the Church is declared to be under condemnation for taking the BofM and revelations lightly.
- January 4, 1833 Letter to N. C. Saxton “The Lord declared to His servants, some eighteen months since, that He was then withdrawing His Spirit from the earth and we can see that such is the fact for not only the churches are dwindling away, but there are no conversions, or but very few” [D&C 63:32 was given 18 months prior to the above statement that was made] “The Gentiles… have broken the covenant in which their fathers were established“
- May 6 1833 (Section 93) “And now, verily I say unto Joseph Smith, Jun.—You have not kept the commandments, and must needs stand rebuked before the Lord“
- November 1833 1200 Saints in Jackson County were expelled by a mob
- December 1833 (Section 101) “were the churches, who call themselves after my name, willing to hearken to my voice.“ (No longer is the Lord calling them after his name, rather, they call themselves by His name)
- February 17 1834 (Section 102) “president of the High Council” (of High Priests and President of the Church ) must be appointed by revelation and sustained by the Church. (This requirement is changed in section 107 after the fulness of the gospel is rejected and the name of Christ is taken out of the Church. See March of 1835 below)
- February 24 1834 (Section 103) Conditional promise given, if Saints “hearken to obey all the words which I the Lord their God shall speak unto them, they shall never cease to prevail until the kingdoms of the world are subdued…But inasmuch as they keep not my commandments, and hearken not to observe all my words, the kingdoms of the world shall prevail against them.”
- April 23rd 1834 (Section 104) The Lord announces that “the covenants [had been] broken through transgression. (This brings the two year attempt to live consecration to an end by the breaking of the covenant See section 82 April 26th 1832 and Isaiah 24)
- May 3, 1834 (HC 2:62-63) Conference of the Church held ten days after breaking law of consecration and officially removes the name of Christ from the name of the Church and changes name to “Church of the Latter day Saints”
- June 22,1834 (Section 105) Revelation given to Zion’s Camp. The expidition to redeem Zion is called off. Because of Transgression-Zion and her laws must wait for a little season
- June 24 (Uncanonized Revelation calling 15 High Priests to gather up the strength of Zion (to be fulfilled at a future time). Algernon Sidney Gilbert rejected his calling and was struck dead from what is believed to have been cholera. 14 others died as well.
- August of 1834 Joseph Smith writes letter to Leaders in Zion identifying Sept 11th 1836 as the date by which Zion needed to be established if obedient. (His observation obviously taken from declaration of the Lord in section 64 given on Sept 11 1831)
- November 29 1834 HC Joseph and Oliver enter into “Covenant of Tithing” “for the continuance of blessings“. This covenant probably made possible the continuance of spiritual gospel blessings under grace despite breaking of the covenant of consecration by collective church, until the Lord came in secret to his temple after which the saints had the keys of the Gospel of Abraham and the law of mercy see Section 110 April 3 1836)
- December 5th 1834 (UnPub Rev Pg 73) An un-canonized revelation provided including Condemnation upon leaders and members of the Church. There must be a reformation in ALL THINGS.
- March of 1835 (section 107) President of the High Priests and of the Church is to be chosen by the body of High Priests. This is a change from section 102 made after the name change of the church instead of by revelation. It appears as if the nature and calling of High Priest has transitioned to a downgraded position as a result of the breaking of the covenant and name change of the church, similar to some of the patriarchal High Priests of the Old Testament (compare with February 17 1834 section 102, prior to name change of the church)
- November 3 1835 (Pg 79 Unpub Rev) Condemnation of 12 Apostles: Joseph receives revelation stating that the 12 apostles are under condemnation: ” Behold they are under condemnation, because they have not been sufficiently humble in my sight…but verily I say unto you, they must all humble themselves before me, before they will be accounted worthy to receive an endowment, to go forth in my name unto all nations” Shortly after this Joseph meets with the 12 apostles and tells them their minds are dark and they need to prepare their hearts:” the endowment you are so anxious about you cannot comprehend now, nor could Gabriel explain it to the understanding of your dark minds, but strive to be prepared in your hearts”
- March 27 1836 Dedication of the Kirtland Temple is an Epic Fail. The saints had been promised that all of the pure in heart would see God. According to Kirtland historian Karl Anderson, there is no credible evidence that anyone saw God. (Section 109) Dedicatory Prayer: Prophecy-prayer contains a prophecy that the Church will come forth out of wilderness at a future time. Last few verses petition the Lord to reinstate the name of Christ back into the name of the Church. On the Kirtland Temple it say “The church of the Latter day Saints”.
- April 3 1836 The Lord secretly comes to his temple with a curse to judgment and restores keys to the dispensation of Gospel of Abraham instead of the dispensation of the fulness of times (See Oliver’s Secret)
- September 11 1836. NOTHING OF SIGNIFICANCE HAPPENED ON THAT DAY, which in fact is significant because Joseph had revealed in a letter written in August of 1834 that September 11th 1836 was the appointed time for the redemption of Zion (“Use every effort to prevail on the churches to gather to those regions and situate themselves to be in readiness to move into Jackson Co. in two years from the Eleventh of September next which is the appointed time for the redemption of Zion.”) In other words, it had been revealed to the the Prophet that if the saints repented and were valiant, September 11, 1836, would be the appointed time. The promise was conditional. He warned that …. (If—verily I say unto you—if the Church with one united effort perform their duties… the work shall be complete….and if we do not exert ourselves to the utmost in gathering up the strength of the Lord’s house that this thing may be accomplished, behold there remaineth a scourge for the Church, even that they shall be driven from city to city, and but few shall remain to receive an inheritance; if those things are not kept, there remaineth a scourge also; therefore, be wise this once, O ye children of Zion! and give heed to my counsel, saith the Lord”
- June 4th 1837 (HC 2:489) “God revealed to me that something new must be done for the salvation of His Church” “The Spirit of the Lord has whispered to me, ‘let my servant Heber go to England and proclaim my gospel and open the door of salvation to that nation. (This is consistent with the Prophecy of Christ in the Book of Mormon that the gospel would be taken to the House of Israel after Gentiles reject the fulness. See 3 Nephi 16:10-13)
- July 23 1837 (Section 112)The Lord declares that “Darkness covers the whole earth and gross darkness the minds of the people, and ALL FLESH HAS BECOME CORRUPT BEFORE MY FACE“
- November 1837 Defiling of the Kirtland Temple: Failure of the Kirtland Safety Society resulting in a mass apostasy of many members and leaders of the Church. Related to this event, a fight broke out in the temple with leading members of the church threatening to kill each other. If the temple had not been defiled before this event, it surely was defiled at the time the fight broke out. (documented by Eliza Snow and Lucy Smith)
- March 1838 (Section 113) Joseph explains that Isaiah 11 prophesies that at a future time when he will bring again Zion, those who had been called in the last days would “put on the authority of the priesthood, which she, Zion has a right to by lineage; also to return to that power which she had lost” “These scattered remnants are exhorted to return to the Lord from whence they have fallen… if they do… he will speak to them [again] , or give them revelation.”“
- April 26 1838 (Section 115) This is a prophecy of what will happen when the events described in Isaiah 60 take place. At that time God’s scattered people will be called the “Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints” which differentiates them from the “Church in Zion” which is composed of the righteous saints who have obeyed the law of gathering. See also Matt. 12:30 (the passage does not not necessarily refer to the re-institution of the name of Christ into the name of the church at the time the revelation was given, see the footnote for verse six)
- July 8 1838 (Section 117) Oliver Granger is to pray for the REDEMPTION OF THE FIRST PRESIDENCY ( Definition of Redemption: the ransom or deliverance of sinners from the bondage of sin and the penalties of God’s violated law by the atonement of Christ- probably making reference to the sins upon apostate Israel upon the leaders of the church per the atonement statute.)
Although the above summary is not conclusive, it provides the major details of how the latter day apostasy had taken place prior to, and resulting in, the act of taking the name of Christ out of the Church in 1834.
Following that, revelation from God began to dry up however God continued to labor with the saints.
Eventually God informs the saints that darkness covered the earth and all flesh had become corrupt, even those who had been previously been sanctified. (Atonement Stature)
Finally, after relocating to Nauvoo, Joseph Smith made the following observation:
“We have been chastened by the hand of God heretofore for not obeying His commands… we have treated lightly His commands, AND DEPARTED FROM HIS ORDINANCES, and the Lord has chastened us sore, and we have felt His arm and kissed the rod…“ (History of the Church, 5:65; from “The Government of God,” an editorial published in Times and Seasons, July 15, 1842, p. 857; Joseph Smith was the editor of the periodical.)
The last major revelation detailing the apostate condition of the saints and warning them that they were on probation, subject to their repentance and reform is now known as section 124.
The Lord gives the following five ominous warnings in section 124
1- The Fulness of the Priesthood (Gospel) had been lost and the temple must be built so that it could be restored again (124:28,34,55 section 113 explains that it will be restored to the earth at a later time)
2- If Saints were not obedient they would be moved out of Nauvoo (124:45-46)
3- They were practicing abominations before the Lord that place curses upon their heads (124:48)
4- Anything more or less than what is contained in The Book of Mormon and the 1835 D&C cometh of Evil (124:119-120)
5- If the Temple was not finished in the sufficient time, the Church would be rejected with their dead (124:31-32)
The good news is that there are countless references to the fact that in the end times the Father will work a Marvelous Work and gather out the elect of God