Minutes, 1–5 October 1841

his mission, which was listened to with  intense interest; and the cenference, by  vote, expressed their approbation of the  style and spirit of said letter. The Presi dent then made remarks on the inclemen cy of the weather and the uncomfortable  situation of the saints with regard to a  place of worship, and a place of public  entertainment.
The conference was then called upon  by the President, to elect a general church  Clerk in place of R[obert] B. Thompson deceas ed. Conference made choice of James  Sloan. Br. Lyman Wight then called  upon the conference to elect a President  of the High Priest’s quorum, in place of  Don Carlos Smith, deceased. Br. George  Miller was nominated and duly e[l]ected.
Br. B. Young then presented to the no tice of the conference, the business com menced at a late special conference,  with regard to the appointment of suita ble and faithful men to the several impor tant stations of labor in this and other  countries.
Br. L. Wight then addressed the con ference on the importance of order and  uniformity of instruction, and, of a una nimity of effort to spread the work of the  kingdom. Pres. Joseph Smith then made  some corrections of doctrine in quoting a  passage from 1 Cor. 12, 28, showing it to  be a principle of order or gradation in  rising from one office to another in the  Priesthood.
Br. Hyrum Smith made remarks dis approbatory of the course pursued by  some Elders, in withstanding the efforts  of the Presidency to gather the saints,  and in enticing them to stop in places not  appointed for the gathering; particularly  the conduct of Elder Almon Babbitt of  Kirtland. Brs. Lyman Wight and Hen ry Miller having travelled in places where  Br. A. Babbitt had been in his journey ing eastward from his visit to Nauvoo,  testified that he had in many places taught  doctrine contrary to the revelations of  God and detrimental to the interest of the  church.
Moved, seconded and carried that El der Almon Babbitt be disfellowshiped by  the conference as an Elder till such time  as he shall make satisfaction.
Closed with singing by the choir, Hymn  124—and prayer by Br. Geo. [A.] Smith.
Conference adjourned till to-morrow  morning, 9 o’clock.
Sunday 3rd, A. M. Conference assem bled and was called to order by President  [William] Marks, and divine service commenced by  the choir singing Hymn 274 and prayer  by Br. H[eber] C. Kimball.
President Joseph Smith, by request of  some of the Twelve, gave instructions on  the doctrine of Baptism for the Dead;  which was listened to with intense interest  by the large assembly. The speaker  presented “Baptism for the Dead” as the  only way that men can appear as saviors  on mount Zion. The proclamation of  the first principles of the gospel was a  means of salvatien to men individually,  and it was the truth, not men that saved  them; but men, by actively engaging in  rites of salvation substitutionally, became  instrumental in bringing multitudes of  their kin into the kingdom of God. He  explained a difference between an angel  and a ministering spirit; the one a resur rected or translated body, with its spirit,  ministering to embodied spirits—the other  a disembodied spirit, visiting and minis tering to disembodied spirits. Jesus Christ  became a minestering spirit, while his  body laying in the sepulchre, to the spirits  in prison; to fulfil an important part of  his mission, without which he could not  have perfected his work or entered into  his rest. After his resurrection, he ap peared as an angel to his disciples &c.  Translated bodies cannot enter into rest un til they have undergone a change equival ent to death. Translated bodies are design ed for future missions. The angel that  appeared to John on the Isle of Patmos  was a translated or resurrected body.—  Jesus Christ went in body, after his res urrection, to minister to translated and  resurrected bodies. There has been a  chain of authority and power from Adam  down to the present time. The only way  to obtain truth and wisdom, is not to ask  it from books, but to go to God in prayer  and obtain divine teaching. It is no more  incredible that God should save the dead,  than that he should raise the dead. There  is never a time when the spirit is too old  to approach God. All are within the  reach of pardoning mercy, who have not  committed the unpardonable sin, which  hath no forgiveness, neither in this world,  nor in the world to come. There is a way  to release the spirit of the dead; that is,  by the power and authority of the Priest [h]ood—by binding and loosing on earth [p. 577]
Minutes, Nauvoo, IL, 1–5 Oct. 1841; in Times and Seasons, 15 Oct. 1841, 2:576–580.