1844 March 7 Remarks at the Nauvoo Temple


1844 March 7 Remarks at the Nauvoo Temple



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Wilford Woodruff

extracted text

DATE: 07 March 1844
Nauvoo, Illinois

SOURCE: Addresses/BY
MHBY 161-163

Brothers Joseph and Hyrum spoke at length, and I followed them and said,---I wish to speak upon the duty of lawyers, as they have been spoken of this morning.---They were first among the children of Israel to explain the laws of Moses to the common people.
I class myself as a lawyer in Israel. My business is to make peace among the people; and when any man who calls himself a lawyer, takes a course to break peace instead of making it, he is out of the line of his duty.---A lawyer's duty is to read the law well himself, then tell the people what it is, and let them act upon it, and keep peace; and let them receive pay like any laboring man.
It is desirable for justices of the peace, when men call for writs, to enquire into the merits of the case, and tell the parties how to settle it; and thus put down lawsuits. To cure lawing, let us pay attention to our own business.
When we hear a story, never tell it again; and it will be a perfect cure. If your brother mistreats you, let him alone; if your enemy cheats you, let him go; cease to deal with men who abuse you; if all men had taken the straightforward course that some have, we should not have such disorderly men in our midst.
I have no objection to any man coming here, but I will have nothing to do with men who will abuse me at midnight and at noon day.---Our difficulties and persecutions have always arisen from men right in our midst.
It is the lust of individuals to rob us of everything, and to take ad - vantage of divisions that may arise among us to build themselves up. I feel that I want every man should stay, and lift up holy lands without dubiety, wrath, or doubting.
To the men who own land here I would say, do not think you can sell your lands here, and then go off and spend it somewhere else in abusing the "Mormons." I tell you nay; for know it, ye people, that Israel is here, and they are the head, and not the tail; and the people must learn it; all those who have gone from us, have gone from the head to the tail.
The grand object before us is to build the Temple this season. We have heard the effects of slander, and we want to cure and balm; and I want all of you to do the same. I will tell you what it is, it is to mind our own business, and let others alone; and suffer wrong rather than do wrong; if any one takes your property away, let them alone, and have nothing to do with them.
A Spirit has been manifest to divide the Saints; it was manifest in the last election: it was said if they did not look out, the Saints on the flat, would beat the Saints on the hill.
Great God! how such a thing looks! that the Saints should be afraid of beating one another in the election, or being beat. I would ask who built up this city? Would steamboats have landed here, if the Saints had not come? Or could you, even the speculators, have sold your lands for anything here, if the Saints had not come? They might have sold for a few bear and wolf skins, but not for money.
If any of you wish to know how to have your bread fall butter side up, butter it on both sides, and then it will fall butter side up. Oppose this work and it will roll over you.
When did this work ever stop since it began? Never! The only thing the Saints now want to know is. what does the Lord want of us, and we are ready to do it.
Well, then, build the temple of the Lord---keep the Law of God, ye Saints, and the hypocrite and scoundrel will flee out of your midst, and tremble, for the fire of God will be too hot for them.
I expect the Saints are so anxious to work, and so ready to do right, that God has whispered to the Prophet, "Build the Temple, and let the Nauvoo House alone at present." I would not sue a man if he owed me five hundred or a thousand dollars should he come to me and say he would not pay me.
Wilford Woodruff Journal Mss.
[Part of the remarks of Brigham Young to the congregation about the progress of the temple]
We do not intend to finish the Nauvoo house this season, but to finish the temple this summer, or the walls of it, and get the roof on by December, and do the inside next winter, and about a year from this spring we will dedicate it.