Notes for my writing

This blog is made up of notes on the gospel as found in the only true and living church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This includes notes that are either excerpts from or ideas for books I either have in draft or may yet write.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Brigham Young - J of D vol 1 page 88 excerpts

While speaking the other day to the people, I observed that "the race was not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong," neither riches to men of wisdom. I happened to cast my eyes upon Ira Ames, who was sitting in the congregation, I knew he had been in the Church a considerable length of time, I have been personally acquainted with him for twenty years. My eye also caught many more of the first Saints at the same time. These men know that "Mormonism" is true, they have moved steadily forward, and have not sought to become noted characters, as many have; but, unseen as it were, they have maintained their footing steadily in the right path. I could place my hand upon many in this congregation, who will win the race, though they are not very swift, to outward appearance, and they make not great pretensions; they are found continually attending to their own business. They do not appear to be great warriors, or as if they were likely to win the battle. But what is their true character? They have faith today, they are filled with faith, their words are few, but they are full of integrity. You will find them to-morrow as they were yesterday, or are today. Visit them when you will, or under whatever circumstances, and you find them unalterably the same; and finally when you have spent your life with them, you will find that their lives throughout have been well spent, full of faith, hope, charity, and good works, as far as they have had the ability. These are the ones who will win the race, conquer in the battle, and obtain the peace and righteousness of eternity.

...

I would rather hear men tell their own experience, and testify that Joseph was a Prophet of the Lord, and that the Book of Mormon, the Bible, and other revelations of God, are true; that they know it by the gift and power of God; that they have conversed with angels, have had the power of the Holy Ghost upon them, giving them visions and revelations, than hear any  other kind of preaching that ever saluted my ears.

...

The sentiments of my mind, and the manner of my life, are to obtain knowledge by the power of the Holy Ghost.

...

If all the talent, tact, wisdom, and refinement of the world had been sent to me with the Book of Mormon, and had declared, in the most exalted of earthly eloquence, the truth of it, undertaking to prove it by learning and worldly wisdom, they would have been to me like the smoke which arises only to vanish away. But when I saw a man without eloquence, or talents for public speaking, who could only say, "I know, by the power of the Holy Ghost, that the Book of Mormon is true, that Joseph Smith is a Prophet of the Lord," the Holy Ghost proceeding front that individual illuminated my understanding, and light, glory, and immortality were before me. I was encircled by them, filled with them, and I knew for myself that the testimony of the man was true. But the wisdom of the world, I say again, is like smoke, like the fog of the night, that disappears before the rays of the luminary of day, or like the hoar-frost in the warmth of the sun's rays. My own judgment, natural endowments, and education bowed to this simple, but mighty testimony. There sits the man who baptized me, (brother Eleazer Miller.) It filled my system with light, and my soul with joy. The world, with all its wisdom and power, and with all the glory and gilded show of  its kings or potentates, sinks into perfect insignificance, compared with the simple, unadorned testimony of the
[p.91] servant of God. 

...

when the Almighty sheds forth His Spirit upon an individual, or upon a people, the vision of their mind is opened, so as to discern between the things pertaining to this organization, and those pertaining to organizations which are brought forth in other spheres, all things are made new to them, for all things in the heavens and on the earth are in the power of the Almighty, and can only be revealed unto mortals, in their proper light, by the power of the Holy Ghost.

...

This evil is with us, it is that influence which tempts to sin, and which has been permitted to come into the world for the express purpose of giving us an opportunity of proving ourselves before God, before Jesus Christ our elder brother, before the holy angels, and before all good men, that we are determined to overcome the evil, and cleave to the good, for the Lord has given us the ability to do so. Consequently, when the evil is present with me, I have a little fighting to do, I must turn and combat it until it is eradicated from my affections, as well as from my actions, [p.92] that I may have power to do all the good I wish to perform. Every person is capable of this, all can bridle their tongues, and cease from every evil act from this time henceforth and forever, and do good instead.

...

When the enemy makes war with me, I am thrown on the defensive, and if I use my weapons skilfully, and with firmness of purpose, my antagonist must yield to me the victory, the Lord being my helper. The Scriptures say—"Rebuke the devil, and he will flee from you." This is the duty of every Saint. When evil is present with us, we must overcome it, or be overcome by it. When the devil is in our hearts, tempting us to do that which is wrong, we must resist him or be led captive by him.

...

I frequently exhort the brethren not to be in a hurry, for we shall not stop here, we are only hunting for the grave, and there is no fear but we shall find it.

...

We have embraced the Gospel, and are professedly Latter-day Saints, but evil will introduce itself in the midst of my brethren, then I have frequently to chastise them. There are two thousand persons in this assembly, and if only half a dozed of them have done wrong, I could not chastise them without appearing to chastise the whole congregation, whist in reality is not so. By chastising the guilty, however, it is impossible to spot the conscience of good men and women, whose hearts are clean and pure as a piece of white paper.

...

Should the people be determined from this time henceforth, never to do anything but good, and should go forth to build up the Kingdom of God, doing everything in their power to promote the cause of truth, and never do another wrong, it would be but a short time before this people would be a holy people, sanctified unto the Lord. We are already the best people on earth, but we can still improve, we are made for that purpose, our capacities are organized to expand until we can receive into our comprehension celestial knowledge and wisdom, and to continue worlds without end.

...

To this end has He ordained all things to increase and multiply. The Lord God Almighty has decreed this principle to be the great governing law of existence, and for that purpose are we formed. Furthermore, if men can understand and receive it, mankind are organized to receive intelligence until they become perfect in the sphere they are appointed to fill, which is far ahead of us at present. When we use the term perfection, it applies to man in his present condition, as well as to heavenly beings. We are now, or may be, as perfect in our sphere as God and Angels are in theirs, but the greatest intelligence in existence can continually ascend to greater heights of perfection.



No comments:

Post a Comment