Prophets in Mormonism, Part XIX

By Marvin W. Cowan

Doctrine and Covenants Sec. 124 is dated January 19, 1841. Verse 1 says, “Verily, thus saith the Lord unto you, my servant Joseph Smith, I am well pleased with your offering and acknowledgments, which you have made; for unto this end have I raised you up, that I might show forth my wisdom…” Our last five articles discussed some of the problems in D. & C. 124. Remember those problems were all in just one revelation (D. & C. 124)! Following is a summary of some of the problems. For more details about them, see our recent articles.

1. Joseph Smith was immediately to make a proclamation of the LDS gospel to the kings of the earth and American leaders and to tell them to bring their gold and silver to help the LDS build a temple in Nauvoo (vs. 2-11) but 3 ½ years later he still hadn’t done that when he died in 1844.

2. Robert B. Thompson was to help Smith write that proclamation (vs. 12-14). But he died at the age of 30 just seven months after Smith said he received this revelation, so he didn’t help write that proclamation.

3. John C. Bennett was also to help with the same project (vs.16-17). But he was disfellowshipped for immorality a year later on May 11, 1842 and he was later excommunicated without ever helping with Smith’s proclamation.

4. Lyman Wight was to preach the gospel and help oversee the building of the Nauvoo House (vs. 18-19, 22, 62). “The Lord” said “It is my will that my servant Lyman Wight should continue preaching for Zion…that when he shall finish his work I may receive him unto myself (vs.18-19). But against Brigham Young’s advice, he went to Texas to help George Miller start a new church in 1845 and was excommunicated on December 3, 1848. So, he did not faithfully preach the LDS gospel nor oversee the building of the Nauvoo House. Did “the Lord” receive him when he died as v. 19 says?

5. “The Lord” said “George Miller is without guile; he may be trusted,” “I love him” and “he shall honor me” (vs. 20-21). He was to help oversee the building of the Nauvoo House (vs. 22, 62). But, instead he went to Texas in 1845 to start a new church and he was excommunicated on December 3, 1848. So, was he trustworthy, honoring “the Lord,” and loved by “the Lord” when he disobeyed the LDS leaders?

6. “The Lord” commanded George Miller, Lyman Wight and others to oversee the building of a boarding house called the Nauvoo House (vs. 22-24, 56-61). Joseph Smith and his descendants were to “have place” in the Nauvoo House from “generation to generation, forever and ever” (vs. 56-59). But Joseph Smith was killed before it was built, so he never lived in it. After Smith’s death, his wife, Emma, remarried and her second husband built a house on part of the Nauvoo House’s foundation. They lived in it for awhile and then the RLDS Church bought it, so it did not stay in the Smith family forever. No one has lived in it in more than a hundred years.

7. “The Lord” also commanded the LDS to build the Nauvoo Temple (vs. 25-55). All LDS were to come to Nauvoo with their gold, silver and other wealth to help build the temple (vs. 25-26). But “all” LDS didn’t come nor did they give all their wealth to build the temple. The Nauvoo Temple was still under construction when it caught fire and burned, so it was never fully completed. “The Lord” commanded LDS to build that temple and He said He would give them sufficient time to build it, but if they didn’t finish it in that time they would be rejected as a Church (vs. 31-32). Since it wasn’t finished, were the LDS rejected? “The Lord” explained that the LDS temple in Jackson County, MO wasn’t built because the LDS were hindered by their enemies, so “the Lord” did not require any more of them (vs. 49-54). That contradicts what “the Lord” said in D. & C. 3:1-2 “The works and the designs, and the purposes of God cannot be frustrated, neither can they come to naught…neither doeth He vary from that which He hath said.” If God doesn’t change and what He said in D. & C. 3:1-2 and 124:31-32 is true, can the LDS Church be the Lord’s Church?

8. Vinson Knight was to buy stock in the Nauvoo House which would belong to him and his descendents from generation to generation (vs. 74-76) but he died just 18 months after Smith said he received this revelation. The Nauvoo House was never completed, so neither he nor his descendants had any benefit from it.

9. William Marks was to buy stock in the Nauvoo House “for himself and his generation from generation to generation” (v. 80). Since it wasn’t built, this never happened. Wm. Marks was dropped from the LDS Church on October 7, 1844, so he didn’t remain faithful to it.

10. William Law was also to buy stock in the Nauvoo House “for himself and his seed after him from generation to generation” (vs. 82-102) but it never happened. And he was to preach the LDS gospel, publish Smith’s translation of the Bible, become a prophet, seer and revelator as well as heal the sick, cast out devils and raise the dead. “The Lord” said he had a mission for Wm. Law and Hyrum (Smith) “and for them alone” (v. 102). Even though William was a counselor in the First Presidency he became estranged from Smith by January 1844 and was excommunicated on April 18, 1844 while Smith was still alive, so he never did what “the Lord” said he would do.

11. Robert D. Foster was also to buy stock in the Nauvoo House for himself and his descendants (vs. 115-117) but, he was also excommunicated on April 18, 1844 along with Wm. Law.

12. Don Carlos Smith, the youngest brother of Joseph, was called as president over a quorum of high priests (v.133), but he died on August 7, 1841, less than seven months after Joseph Smith said he received this revelation and when Don Carlos was just 26 years old. If “the Lord” is omniscient, why did He give Joseph Smith so much false information? “The Lord” said of Joseph Smith in D. & C. 124:1 “I raised you up that I might show forth my wisdom through the weak things of earth.” Where does D. & C. 124 show the wisdom of the Lord?

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