Imatges de pÓgina

cwn souls. They have been careless and indifferent concerning the salvation of themselves and their families. President Young used to say that there were many men that were willing to die for their religion who would not live it. So there are many men willing to make great sacrifices for the salvation of others who are apparently indifferent about that which is necessary for their own salvation. This is not right. It is a personal matter with us as to whether we are preparing ourselves and our families for the coming of the Lord. Are we doing all that we can to prepare ourselves and our households, so that when He comes we shall not be caught unprepared?

This talk that we have heard so much of concerning tithing is a preparatory step. I believe President Snow has been moved upon by the power of God to stir this people up to diligence upon this point. There are other things contingent upon the payment of tithing. President Snow has told us this afternoon what one thing is, and that we should prepare ourselves for it. We are not groping as blind men to find the path, for the Lord has made the path plain before us. We are not in the dark; but it is necessary that we should exercise faith in God and beseech Him continually to give unto us the strength and grace necessary to perform the labors that have to be done in order to prepare ourselves as we should do.

There is one labor that has rested upon my mind with great weight for some time. I have looked at the nations of the earth and have examined somewhat into the labors of our Elders. We have about eighteen hundred Elders preaching the Gospel in various places, and they are doing the work most thoroughly. Men and women have gone forth and have spent their time with the greatest pleasure, forsaking home, leaving business, and devoting themselves for years to the warning of the people concerning the calamities that the Lord is about to pour out upon the nations of the earth. Both men and women are doing this work with all diligence and faithfulness. I was told a day or two ago concerning a young lady who is out in the ministry. Her brother has just returned from a mission. In coming

from his mission he had called upon her and they had visited some places together. I asked her parents why she did not return with her brother. They said she did not want to return. She has only been out eighteen months, she is busily engaged in the work of the Lord, and she feels desirous to complete her mission before she returns home. This spirit is on our sisters, as well as on our Elders, and they do all in their power to warn the people, until in some lands and some cities there is scarcely a house that has not been visited or that has not had a tract delivered to it. According to the last report received from Great Britain, two hundred and seventy-four Elders are laboring in that land, with faithfulness and assiduity, spending time and means and in a certain sense wearing themselves out in order to deliver the message of salvation that God has committed to them. This work has now been going on for upwards of sixty years, and there is scarcely an ear that has not heard the message.

Concerning the missions in this country, this land has been warned now for seventy years. God commanded the Elders in early days to warn the people, and away back in Kirtland and Missouri He said that the leading Elders of the Church had done their duty, and there was none of the blood of this generation on their garments; but those who had not labored as they had done were to continue in the field until it could also be said of them that their garments were clean from the blood of this generation. In that early day the Lord spoke in this manner. casion He said: "Behold, I sent you out to testify and warn the people, and it becometh every man who hath been warned, to warn his neighbor.

On one oc

"Therefore they are left without excuse, and their sins are upon their own heads."

The Lord appeared to be determined to cut his work short in righteousness. I do not wish to detract from the labors of the Elders in our own land; but this land has been warned. I feel that we can stand before the judgment seat of our great Creator free from the blood of this generation in these United States. It is true, we have not told every man, woman and child about

these things. God requires us to preach His Gospel and to warn the inhabitants of all lands, and then if they do not take warning and warn their neighbors, their sins rest upon their own heads, and our garments are clean.

How long has this great work which God has established been a theme for newspaper writers? Ever since we came to these valleys they have known about us; they have had thousands of testimonies borne to them concerning this seen it grow and work; they have spread; they have seen and heard of their our Elders traveling through cities and visiting foreign lands; and now the warning voice of the judgments of God is following the testimony of the Elders. As far back as December, 1832, the Lord said:

testimony cometh

"And after your wrath and indignation upon the people;

"For after your testimony cometh the testimony of earthquakes, that shall cause groanings in the midst of her, and men shall fall upon the ground, and shall not be able to stand.

"And also cometh the testimony of the voice of thunderings, and the voice of lightnings, and the voice of tempests, and the voice of the waves of the sea, beyond their heaving themselves bounds.

"And all things shall be in commotion; and surely, men's hearts shall fail them; for fear shall come upon all people."

If an

The Lord's judgments are following
the warning voice that has been raised
by the Elders of this Church.
other Elder did not lift his voice, and
if another tract were not distributed in
this land of ours, the Elders have done

their duty, and this nation cannot in the
day of judgment rise up against the
Elders of this Church and say that they
did not bear testimony to them con-
I am now telling
cerning this work.
Our Elders spend
you my own views.
two years or more in the missionary
field and they baptize on an average not
exceeding four souls, or about two a
year. I would not dare to tell you how
much money is spent as well as time to
do this.

I will tell you another thing connected with this, inasmuch as it occurs to my mind. Many of those who are brought into the Church under the present system of preaching with purse and with erip, instead of without purse and

the faith to without scrip, have not stand as they would have if they entertained he Elders and furnished them with what they needed, as God has commanded. I do not believe we are getting so good a class of converts under this system as under the old system which was followed by the early Elders of this Church. Our converts showed their faith by feeding and clothing the Elders and by giving them By taking this money when necessary. course they proved themselves to be the disciples of the Son of God, for the Lord says:

"Whoso receiveth you receiveth me, and the same will feed you, and clothe you, and give you money.

"And he who feeds you, or clothes you, or gives you money, shall in no wise lose his reward:

"And he that doeth not these things is not my disciple; by this you may know my disciples." (Doc. and Cov. 84: 89-91.)

But now our Elders go and spend their own money, and people in some cases will not feed and entertain them. Of course, I believe there are many places where the people, but especially the Saints, are exceedingly kind to the Elders, and while there may be some exceptions, there are very good people being gathered out now.

In this land of ours, what warnings there have been! The blood of the martyrs shed upon this soil is crying to God. The expulsion of the Saints from Ohio, the expulsion from Jackson county, from Clay county, from Caldwell county, in Missouri, and from Illinoisare they not testimonies? I take it that

they are, and God will hold them as testimonies against the guilty men and


women who have done these things, as
well as against those who have never
lifted their hands or their voices to re-
dress any wrong that has been prac-
upon the Latter-day Saints.
Then since we came to these
mountains, this
nation has
been almost convulsed by this Mor-
mon question. It has agitated the peo-
ple everywhere. All the newspapers
in the land have discussed it in all its
phases. Is not this a warning? What
more can we do than we have done in
this direction? Or shall we all go out
and allow ourselves to be martyred,

Hundreds of Elders now in the mis

sionary fields might leave this nation, and go to peoples who have never heard the sound of the Gospel; I would carry the tidings of salvation to lands that áre now locked in tyranny, where the people cannot breathe the air of freedom; and I would risk imprisonment, and even death, in order that these peoples might be warned. No doubt thousands of them are praying to our heavenly Father to send them the truth of heaven; for there are other souls who want the truth besides those who have received it. When this Gospel was first carried to Europe thousands were praying for God to send the truth to them. When they heard the message they received it gladly. So in other places where the Elders have gone. But there are many nations yet to be warned, and we have this work to do. I will not say that we ought to do it before the Lord comes, for I do not know when He will come. But this duty is incumbent upon us; for by people out of every nation under heaven Zion is to be built up. Every land and every nationality will have to contribute of its strength and numbers, in greater or less degree, to fulfill the words of God concerning the building up of Zion. Oriental lands now untouched by the Elders of the Church have to be penetrated and the honest souls sought out. In this work God will precede His Elders. He will send His angels before them, as He has done, to prenare the people to receive them and to listen to their message.

My feeling is that we should withdraw our efforts to a great extent from the countries where we have been spending so much time and means with so little fruits. Let the Gospel be sent to lands afar off, where tyranny reigns; and when the Gospel goes there, God will soften the hearts of the rulers, and greater freedom will follow. It has been so in Germany; it will be so in Russia, in the Latin countries, and in the countries of eastern Europe. God is working with the nations, and He will work with us if we will do our duty. Then we can stand before our Father with our skirts clean from the blood of this generation, having done our whole duty.

If it should cost us our liberty, as it may do at times; if it should cost us our

lives, as it may do, to carry this Gospel to every land, it would be no more than others have suffered in the same cause. God has said in this Book of Doctrine and Covenants:

"And whoso layeth down his life in my cause, for my name's sake, shall find it again, even life eternal:

"Therefore be not afraid of your enemies, for I have decreed in my heart, saith the Lord, that I will prove you in all things, whether you will abide in my covenant, even unto death, that you may be found worthy."

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"Let no man be afraid to lay down his life for my sake, for whoso layeth down his life for my sake shall find it again;

"And whoso is not willing to lay down his life for my sake, is not my disciple."

It is a test by which His disciples may be known. But while we should not shrink from complying with every requirement, we ought to avoid persecution and death by every means in our power that would be honorable and consistent with our duties and obligations. But in preaching this Gospel to the nations of the earth, we ought not to be afraid of our liberty or our lives. It has cost the liberties of Elders in Austria, Norway and other places albut it ready; has been followed by greater freedom. The efforts of the Elders have been crowned with success in this respect. It has seemed as though the preaching of the Gospel has had a loosening effect in many places upon the people.

In this connection I think we should teach our young men all the languages of the earth. Let them seek by study, by faith, by the gift of tongues and by the gift of interpretation to understand the languages of men. Our Mutual Improvement associations should devote themselves to the study of languages, that we may have a people here familiar with every language spoken under heaven. What was the gift of tongues given for if not for this? Was it give

for the brethren and sisters to get up and talk in tongues in fast meeting? That is a small thing, very good in its place; but what we want is to have men that can go to any nation and speak the language of that nation by the power of God, first having sought by faith and by study to obtain the language and the gift of interpretation. I talk this way because I know that the gift of tongues and the gift of interpretation can be obtained, to enable an Elder to speak to the people and to understand them when they speak to him. We should utilize these gifts that God has given for this purpose. Many of our Elders who go out into foreign lands do acquire the language by that gift and are able to speak it with a facility that surprises other people. On the Sandwich Islands I know that the people were astonished by the facility by which the language was acquired by our Elders and the correctness with which it was spoken by them. So it has been in Germany. I have had sons there who, in a very few weeks were able to express their thoughts in the German language. Other men have had sons there whose efforts have been attended with the same results. So it will be if we send our Elders to any land-to France, to Spain, to Protugal, Italy and all along the Mediterranean, to the isles of Greece, up to the Danubian principalities, and into Austria with its numerous nationalities, to Hungary, Poland, and to Russia. Almost all these lands are sealed against us at the present time. We have not made any great effort to enter some of them. What has been done has been done in a spasmodic way. Now I believe with all my heart that the time has come for us to break forth and lay siege, so to speak, to these lands, whereby an entrance may be effected and the Gospel preached to the people. If the time has come for Elders to go to Japan, let Japan be penetrated. After a while perhaps an opening may be made in Corea, and in Manchuria, and in China, and these lands be penetrated by the Elders with this message of salvation, as soldiers of Christ. Our young men go to the Philippines and to Cuba, and they have been willing to lay down their lives for their country. Young men from this State have done so, and have


thus shown their patriotism. Let us in like manner show our patriotism to the kingdom of God and for the salvation of Jesus Christ, our great leader. Now is the time for us to do this, and we shall be blessed in doing it. God wili be with us and will bless us, as He has done in every effort that we have made to do His will. It is His will that this Gospel of the kingdom should be preached, that every ear mav hear the sound of it; not, perhaps, by direct contact with every individual, but by the signs that accompany the kingdom of God and the wonderful events that are taking place.

The Spirit of God is moving upon the people in all lands, and in many countries they are waiting in solemn anticipation of what is going to happen. All the nations of the earth feel that something remarkable is likely to happen, but they do not know what. The honest in heart in those lands, when they hear the glad tidings that God has provided a refuge to which they can flee as He did in the days of Noah, will be led to rejoice. God has founded this land and the government for the express purpose that Zion might be built upon this land, and that the people of all nations might come here singing His praises and thanking Him that from the darkness and the threatening evils by which they are surrounded He has provided a way of escape, a safe place, that when calamities and judgments come upon the inhabitants of the earth, they can stand in holy places and be secure by keeping the commandments of God. What a glorious theme this is for the Elders to carry to the down-trodden of the nations of the earth who groan in darkness and who see no way of deliverance! Nor will it be the down-trodden alone who will listen to these tidings. Men in high places and of commanding positions will yet listen to them, and they will take note of this extraordinary people who have done such a remarkable work and who are now traversing the globe to bring from every land all who will listen to their message; to bring them with all their traditions to this place which we call Zion, where they can, by the fusing power of the Spirit of God, be consolidated into one united people. It is already the most wonderful thing

that has ever taken place upon the earth; but if we will do our duty on the lines that I have been speaking, how much more influence will we have and how much more will our God be glorified! The world will see and wonder at what is done by those who are laboring in the Lord's name, without taking any credit to themselves, but ascribing all power and success to Him and His Holy Spirit. These will be additional testimonies to the inhabitants of the earth that God is in this great movement, and that he is preparing the way, as the prophets have predicted, for the coming of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Before closing, I wish to say, my brethren and sisters, I hope you will take these things to heart and prepare yourselves. If you are not living as you should do, regulate your households and strive to live according to the commandments of God and the counsels of His servants. Bring your lives into complete subjection to the will of God. If there is anything in you or in your families that is not in accordance with the laws of God, divest yourselves of it as fast as you can by faith and prayer. Let us be a holy people. Oh! when I hear the brethren spending time talking about the Word of Wisdom, I feel to say, are we still little children that we have to be talked to in this way meeting after meeting? It is disgraceful that a people who know as much as we do should have to be talked to about those little habits concerning which

God has spoken so plainly. The law of tithing ought to be so understood that every man, woman and child would obey it gladly, for it is accompanied by great promises, and it will prepare the way for greater things, as President Snow has told us.

I pray God that that which has been said during this conference may sink deep into all our hearts. I pray God to bless you all, to be with you, to fill you with the Holy Ghost, to preserve your lives, to preserve your generations, that you yourselves or some of your posterity, if you should happen to pass away before that time, may be numbered among the Saints of God who shall enter into that millennial glory which is prepared for the faithful, and that none of us may ever be destitute of a man or men to stand before the Lord, bearing the Holy Priesthood, throughout all the generations to come, until time shall be no more, which is my prayer for you all and for myself, in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

Sister Lizzie Thomas Edward and the choir sang the anthem, "When Thou Comest."

The final benediction was pronounced by Elder Francis M. Lyman. Conference then adjourned for six months.'

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