1858 February 28 Sunday Morning Remarks [Incomplete]


1858 February 28 Sunday Morning Remarks [Incomplete]



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John V. Long

extracted text

By Prest. Brigham Young, Tabernacle, Sunday Morning, Feb. 28, 1858.
(Reported by J. V. Long.)

I am aware it is rather late, but I must beg your indulgence. Perhaps the fifth sermon will be just as good as the first, I understand that we have had four to day, three before bro. Kimball's.
I have a few things to say to the congregation, and I wish their perfect attention if you keep quiet and still you can hear me. I do not feel like hollooing louder than the noise that can be made by the people. When I am right well I think I could holloo louder than the people, but I do not feel so today. Stop your talking or else I will stop mine.
I apprehend, and I understand that the cause of the crowd here at the early hour today is that they are expecting, and are anxious to hear some news. If you will be patient, I will give you the news, all that we have from the outside of the cup, or this platter.
It is true our mail facilities are very scanty. There has a rumor gone through the town and the country that there is a gentleman come here on business, but what that business is, is unknown to the people; it is unknown to me at present. But as for it being of much interest to you or to me is a matter that time must determine. At the present I can say it is of no moment to me. This person or gentleman who has come here under the name of Dr. Osborne <will> makes us a visit on his own responsibility, at his own expence, to see us, to learn us, and peradventure he may have an opportunity of presenting our case before our Great Republic, in a different attitude than he could have done if he had not paid us a visit. The result of his visit is in the future.
Many may be led to inquire is this gentleman sent by the government? Has he come to say that our government are willing to apologize and withdraw their armies? He has no such errand. Has he come to say we are in the wrong and they in the right? He has no such word for us. Has he come to say that the government have failed in their attempts and that we should push forward to our injury or the injury of the honest? he has no such errand, but calculates that they shall know the truth; consequently if you can understand my words, and get my ideas that the errand of this gentleman is of no particular moment to you or to me, I am satisfied.
You wish to know what the feelings of our government are. He does not know any more than you and I knew long ago. This gentleman, as far as he is concerned we do not care, this is not the object, but <it is> to knowing the particular object of the people and the government towards us, we know better than any man upon the earth. I know the feelings of the wicked, so do you, so far as you have the light of the spirit which reveals the feelings of the people to you. Christ and Baal are not yet friends, they cannot be made friends. Our persecutions, our afflictions, our trials have come for various reasons. We may say with just propriety that they are ordained of God to perfect the saints. On the other side of the question they are inevitable, in consequence of the hatred that exists in the hearts of all evil spirits, whether in tabernacles or out, against the kingdom of Christ, that deadly hatred which they have against righteousness, thinking eventually to overcome the kingdom of God, destroy the influence of heaven, take possession and dwell upon the earth. In this we have our trials; there is a conflict, a warfare, and this warfare will continue until Jesus overcomes. You and I believe that he will overcome If he does not we shall not. If the kingdom of God does not prevail the quicker that period arrives that is called death, or the dissolution of the organization of mankind the better it will be for you and I, and for the human family. Still we believe that Christ will overcome and conquer, and finally overcome death and him that has the power of it. This is our hope, our glory. For this we try to live, and we have certainly manifested that we are willing to pass through every trial and to make every sacrifice that the Lord sees fit to bring upon us.
If the brethren and sisters will be satisfied with these few remarks with regard to our Stranger, I am satisfied. Still there are a great many questions that if the people had the opportunity, they would doubtless ask them, but I have told you all that concerns us at present.
This gentleman will visit the army, and will return this way, and go home by California. What the result of his visit to them will be we shall learn. What the result of his visit here will be must appear at a future time. If you and I are God's <friends> friends and are faithful to him in all his requirements of us, full of integrity, full of faith, of righteousness and of good works, and charity one towards another; if we will take this course I will promise you one thing that should be satisfactory to us all, we shall come off victorious and as to us being entangled again in the yoke of bondage, if we live our religion we never shall be.
You may search the scriptures, get the facts <and> the case and you will learn this one thing pertaining to the people of God, the never have been suffered to overcome upon the earth while they live their religion. You know and understand that at many times the Lord has undertaken to establish his kingdom upon the earth, and that Kingdom has been overcome always in consequence of the backsliding of the people. It has not been for the want of the power of God, nor in consequences of his promises not being verified, but it has been because of the people forsaking their covenants, for in no other way can the enemies of God overcome light and righteousness.
You are exhorted from day to day to be faithful, and as we have often said we have nothing to do, no other business only to build up the Kingdom of God, and if we sustain that kingdom we sustain ourselves, if we defend it we defend ourselves. If we cease to do this we shall be overcome by our enemies, and have to mingle and join with them and be entangled again in the yoke of bondage. This and this alone causes the priesthood to be taken from the earth. Although it is written that in the last days the God of heaven shall set up a kingdom that shall not be destroyed. This Kingdom will not be destroyed, nor the priesthood taken from the earth, but still you and I may back slide, you and I may be destroyed and others take our places and bear off the kingdom victoriously. So it is for you and I to look to it and see that we are not of that number that forsake God and our covenants.
If this will suffice, in as much as the time has been well occupied, and we have had a pretty lengthy meeting I shall say no more upon this point.
There is one subject that I shall speak upon pertaining to our present actions. We have called upon Bishops and wards to sustain a certain portion of the community to act in our defence. I want to correct some mistakes, though perhaps the Bishops are corrected, and perhaps some of the people are. If they are all right,-- but reports have come to me which convince me that they have no idea of what is required of them. For instance we will say the 14 Ward are required to sustain 20 men. Those men selected, and attach themselves to this ward.
Some have asked what it will take to sustain one man for a year. The Bill for this has been made out for $700, including fit out of animals, arms and ammunition. This has been carried from the commander to the various officers, and from them to the Bishops, and the Bishops have gone to work to raise $700 to each man. This was not designed in the first place. The men that we called to go out we want them to have art enough and brain enough to fit themselves out instead of a Bishop having to furnish for 20 individuals $700 each to fit them out I dont expect it to take 700 to fit them all out. But what do I learn? I learn that if a man who is called upon to go out has a horse he shades it, if he has a mule he shades it, if he has a rifle he peddles it off, if he has a saddle, a buckskin coat or anything that is wanted for the trip he shades them and peddles them off, and sits down and says I have nothing to do. Bishops dismiss every such man, and say I wont furnish you.
I realize that our young men are poor, many of them work for their Parents, and some have been sickly and have not had an opportunity of getting much, but as a general thing they can do a little, and those who are not ready to go and use what they have got to the last red cent we want them to stay at home I want you Bishops to stop this raising means to encourage lazyness and dishonesty. I want to correct the minds of thousands, soldiers, men and women, and to have them know and understand that we want men who will do all they can to fit out themselves.
I am sustaining about ten, and when they call upon me for buckskin I shall say my lad you will find your own, and if they call for a horse I shall tell them to take their own; if they ask for a saddle or a pistol I shall tell them to buy one, for I won't buy any for them till they have used up the last red cent.
I could tell a great many things that have occurred in my lifetime. When I was called to go and preach, in connection with many of my brethren 25 or 26 years ago, if we had not a pair of breeches we had to buy our own, and it was the same with shoes and hats and everything else, and then we had to go and preach the gospel without purse and scrip, year after year. There never was a summer passed over my head from the time that I came into this church till the death of Joseph but I was off preaching the gospel, and so were hundreds and thousands of others. I could trace up and show that others who would pursue another course of conduct and shade what they had of their own and get help from the brethren, I could prove that they have apostatized. There were some who are always desirous to live at the expence of others. Ask a man to go and preach the gospel, and he must be well clad, have money in his pocket, live like a gentleman, while we went out preaching every year -- had to be thankful if we had the privilege of getting into the back of the Steam Boat, and our heads upon one of the little boats, and our feet strung up on the heads of Barrels, but now men must go in the best cabin and be gentlemen. But I will not talk about this now, if I do I shall be hurting somebody's feelings, but I mean to be a thorn in the flesh till I have my full satisfaction.
As I told those who went to San Barnideno that I intended to torment them, and to pour it upon their devoted heads so that I wont have to torment them in eternity. They are willing to come back now from San Barnadino and from all parts of California, and they are very willing to come and take up the cross now they are obliged to. I will excuse one party, those who sent to Carson Valley. We sent them, they went at the word and came back at the word, with few exceptions, but those that went over the mountains went on their own accord, but now they rejoice to come back, but it is because the poor devils could not stay. I want them to know when I cuff their ears and they fall, that they must look out, for I will cuff them with my right hand, and if they fall, like as not I will kick them for falling. They will run here and there and after everything which is but that which is for them to do. When we think of them we can call to mind the words of the savior, O fools, slow of heart, how foolish mankind are to believe what the Prophets say to them.
Again I will say to the Bishops stop this raising of means, and tell the man that cannot raise a horse that he is a poor coote, and instead of raising the means for such men tell them you dont want them. They must run to the range for a Horse ride about the city. When we want to send out those Horses, if they are left upon the range till then, there will be just as many, and probably they will be in just as good order as if they were fetched in now. When we want to gather up those Horses we will get them, and take an account and credit the owner for them, but by pursuing the course that you are pursuing now, you will promote idleness and the spirit of dishonesty, and doing an injury to those brethren who are called to go out.
Young men I want you to go out and find yourselves, and if you have not got a coat go out without one, and if you have not a horse say I will go on foot.
Let me tell you officers, you great military men, let us please you and be dictated by you, and if you had an army at your command, fitted out as you wished it, it would be more than they could do to take care of their property. Do as the Indians do, they take a bow and arrow, a Lariet, a Blanket and a Breechclout, and they expect to get what they need.
We want the Boys to go, and I will get them a draft to get all the Horses and mules they want. But instead of this it is I want an extra horse; I have a good riding horse but I want a pack animal. Go naked and barefoot, then you are ready to fight, to run or do anything else, and you ask no odds of their enemies. Go loaded with mules and horses and behold they are taken from you, and you are crippled, So much for our military men of skill and men of renown.
The flower of the United States army made their appearance on our borders last season, and every man that is a thinking man, a republican, or a sound hearted Democrat what do they say? Why the Mormons are the only people that sustain the principles for which our Fathers fought. Why Brigham Young has taken the cream of the army of the United States and stopped them from going any further.
We maintain those republican principles, as I told bro. Kimball to say to the congregation the principles of true Democracy are the best, they are the foundation and the root which guarantee the sovreign right of the people to say who shall be their rulers, and not ask Uncle Sam to send his damned, rottenhearted scoundrels. We believe in those principles, an we will maintain them, and they may send till they have no more to send, and they will waste away and be found no more.
Perhaps upon the subject of the army I may say no more, but I may take a notion not to come to meeting in the afternoon, and therefore what I have to say I want to say now. You poor --------- if there was a gold mine where you could get a fit-out for a week you would run away to it. If you cannot fit yourself out we don't want you, and if your families want anything here we will take care of them, providing they will do all they can for themselves. But if those sisters sit down and say I have nothing to do, the Bishop will provide for me, and then waste their time parading the streets, and in lazyness, we will not maintain them. I do not want Bishops to do this. I tell you these things are beforehand, for my bones have burned for weeks because of the ignorance and foolery of Bishops and men.
Those who go out in this army to defend us, you are required to go just as a man goes on a preaching mission. A man that does not go with his heart right before God we do not want him to go at all. Those who go in a right way will never be overtaken by an enemy, they wont be caught asleep, their horses will not be taken from them. Those who go unrighteously and do not carry out the instructions given will be delivered into the hands of our enemies, and I would rather have the room than the company of such men.
I will say one thing more with regard to . Osborne, he has pleaded with me on behalf of our common country for me not to chaw up the army which is out here; he wishes them to have the privilege of living. They are in our hands and government know it. What we shall do is not to be told yet; certain circumstances and time will tell, but I am confident of one thing, -- Our beloved President, -- old Jim Buchannan, or to speak politely the President of the United States, he would give money if he was out of the scrape. It is shuffling, to day it is and to morrow it is not, and they feel at Washington as I knew they would feel. The whole mass of law makers feel as if they were all over, I did not say it, and a thousand miles from water. (Laughter) That is the way they feel, and they do not know what <to> to do, they have trampled upon the last rights, the last vestage of the rights of our people, and they know it, and feel that the rod is upon them.
We are here, and we calculate to maintain those principles, and Joseph said if the government and constitutional rights of the people were preserved and sustained, the time would come that it would be done alone by the Elders of Israel, and it will be so.
If our enemies were saved we have them to save.
After having said so much to you, I believe I will stop. It is late, but I want you should hear and treasure up in your hearts what I have said, and when there is any news you need not be afraid but what you will get it. I am not fearful of the people knowing the truth, our position is known to the world. With high heads and open countenances we are for the kingdom of God and the constitution of the United States, because that was formed by our Fathers by the direct dictation of him that set up this kingdom, and we are for