31832

Revelation, 11 September 1831 [D&C 64]

of my Church

The Book of Mormon related that when Christ set up his church in the Americas, “they which were baptized in the name of Jesus, were called the church of Christ.” The first name used to denote the church JS organized on 6 April 1830 was “the Church of Christ...

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hearken ye & hear & receive my will concerning you for verily I say unto you I will that ye should overcome the world3

See 1 John 5:4.  


wherefore I will have compassion upon you there are those among you who have sinned but verily I say for this once for mine own glory & for the salvation of Souls I have forgiven you your sins I will be mercyfull unto you for I have given unto you the Kingdom & the keys

Authority or knowledge of God given to humankind. In the earliest records, the term keys primarily referred to JS’s authority to unlock the “mysteries of the kingdom.” Early revelations declared that both JS and Oliver Cowdery held the keys to bring forth...

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of the mysteries of the kingdom shall not be taken from my Servent Joseph while he liveth in-as-much as he obeyeth4

A copy of this revelation made by Samuel Smith and Orson Hyde, probably around January 1832, has “abideth in” instead of “obeyeth.” (Hyde and Smith, Notebook, [40].)  


mine ordinances

A religious rite. JS taught that ordinances were covenants between man and God, in which believers could affirm faith, gain spiritual knowledge, and seek blessings. Some ordinances were considered requisite for salvation. The manner in which ordinances were...

View Glossary
5

According to a September 1830 revelation, the Lord had given JS “the keys of the mysteries of the Revelations which are sealed until I shall appoint unto him another in his stead.” A December 1830 revelation similarly proclaimed that JS had “the Keys of the mystery of those things which have been sealed . . . if he abide in me & if not another will I plant in his stead.” (Revelation, Sept. 1830–B [D&C 28:6–7]; Revelation, 7 Dec. 1830 [D&C 35:18].)  


there are those who have sought occation6

The word “occation” (occasion) here means “opportunity of attacking, of fault-finding, or of giving or taking offence.” The copy of the revelation made by Samuel Smith and Orson Hyde has “accusation” rather than “occation.” (“Occasion,” in Oxford English Dictionary, 7:42; Hyde and Smith, Notebook, [40]; see also Daniel 6:4; and Judges 14:4.)  


against him without a cause nevertheless he hath sinned but verily I say unto you I the Lord forgiveth sins unto those who confess their sins before me & ask forgiveness who have not sinned unto death7

See 1 John 5:16–17.  


my Deciples in days of old sought occasion8

The Samuel Smith and Orson Hyde copy of the revelation has “accusation” rather than “occasion.” (Hyde and Smith, Notebook, [40].)  


against one an other & forgave not one an other in their hearts9

The New Testament gospels recount arguments among the disciples regarding who among them was greater. (See Luke 9:46; 22:24; and Mark 9:33–34.)  


& for this evil they were afflicted & sorely chastened wherefore I say unto you that ye had ought to forgive one another for he that forgiveth not his brother his tresspasses standeth condemned before the Lord for there remaineth in him the greater sin I the Lord will forgive whom I will forgive but of you it is required to forgive all men & ye had ought to say in your hearts let God Judge between me & thee10

See 1 Samuel 24:12, 15.  


& reward thee according to thy deeds & he that repenteth not of his sins & confess them not then ye shall bring him before the church & do with him as the Scriptures Saith unto you either by commandment

Generally, a divine mandate that church members were expected to obey; more specifically, a text dictated by JS in the first-person voice of Deity that served to communicate knowledge and instruction to JS and his followers. Occasionally, other inspired texts...

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or by revelation11

See Articles and Covenants, ca. Apr. 1830 [D&C 20:80, 83]; and Revelation, 23 Feb. 1831 [D&C 42:74–93].  


& this ye shall do that God might be glorified not because ye forgive not having not compassion but that ye may be Justified12

The Samuel Smith and Orson Hyde copy of the revelation has “faithful” instead of “Justified.” (Hyde and Smith, Notebook, [40].)  


in the eyes of the law that ye may not offend him who is your lawgiver verily I say for this cause ye shall do these things Behold I the Lord was angery with him who was my Servent Ezra Booth

14 Feb. 1792–before 12 Jan. 1873. Farmer, minister. Born in Newtown, Fairfield Co., Connecticut. Admitted on trial to Methodist ministry, 4 Sept. 1816, and stationed in the Ohio District in Beaver, Pike Co. Admitted into full connection and elected a deacon...

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& also my Servent Isaac Morley

11 Mar. 1786–24 June 1865. Farmer, cooper, merchant, postmaster. Born at Montague, Hampshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Thomas Morley and Editha (Edith) Marsh. Family affiliated with Presbyterian church. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, before 1812. Married...

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for they kept not the Law neither the commandment they sought evil in their hearts & I the Lord withheld my spirit13

A copy of this revelation, made by John Whitmer for Newel K. Whitney around the same time as the Revelation Book 1 copy, includes the words “from them” at this point. (Revelation, 11 Sept. 1831, Newel K. Whitney, Papers [D&C 64].)  


they condemned for evil that thing in which there was no evil14

A June 1831 revelation assigned Booth and Morley to travel to Missouri together, “preaching the word by the way.” Booth later complained that the Spirit did not enable him to speak with as great “liberty” as he expected on this trip. Exactly how Booth and Morley had defied the February 1831 revelation known as the “Laws of the Church of Christ” is unclear. (Revelation, 6 June 1831 [D&C 52:23]; Ezra Booth, “Mormonism—No. V,” Ohio Star [Ravenna], 10 Nov. 1831, [3]; Revelation, 9 Feb. 1831 [D&C 42:1–73]; Revelation, 23 Feb. 1831 [D&C 42:74–93].)  


nevertheless I have forgiven my Servent Isaac

11 Mar. 1786–24 June 1865. Farmer, cooper, merchant, postmaster. Born at Montague, Hampshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Thomas Morley and Editha (Edith) Marsh. Family affiliated with Presbyterian church. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, before 1812. Married...

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& also my Servent Edward Partridge

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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Behold he hath sinned & Satan Seeketh to destroy his soul but when these things are made known unto them they repenteth [p. 109]
of my Church

The Book of Mormon related that when Christ set up his church in the Americas, “they which were baptized in the name of Jesus, were called the church of Christ.” The first name used to denote the church JS organized on 6 April 1830 was “the Church of Christ...

View Glossary
hearken ye & hear & receive my will conce rning you for verily I say unto you I will that ye should over come the world3

See 1 John 5:4.  


wherefore I will have compassion upon you there  are those among you who have sinned but verily I say for this  once for mine own glory & for the salvation of Souls I have  forgiven you your sins I will be mercyfull unto you for I  have given unto you the Kingdom & the keys

Authority or knowledge of God given to humankind. In the earliest records, the term keys primarily referred to JS’s authority to unlock the “mysteries of the kingdom.” Early revelations declared that both JS and Oliver Cowdery held the keys to bring forth...

View Glossary
of the mysteries  of the kingdom shall not be taken from my Servent Joseph while  he liveth in-as-much as he obeyeth4

A copy of this revelation made by Samuel Smith and Orson Hyde, probably around January 1832, has “abideth in” instead of “obeyeth.” (Hyde and Smith, Notebook, [40].)  


mine ordinances

A religious rite. JS taught that ordinances were covenants between man and God, in which believers could affirm faith, gain spiritual knowledge, and seek blessings. Some ordinances were considered requisite for salvation. The manner in which ordinances were...

View Glossary
5

According to a September 1830 revelation, the Lord had given JS “the keys of the mysteries of the Revelations which are sealed until I shall appoint unto him another in his stead.” A December 1830 revelation similarly proclaimed that JS had “the Keys of the mystery of those things which have been sealed . . . if he abide in me & if not another will I plant in his stead.” (Revelation, Sept. 1830–B [D&C 28:6–7]; Revelation, 7 Dec. 1830 [D&C 35:18].)  


there are those  who have sought occation6

The word “occation” (occasion) here means “opportunity of attacking, of fault-finding, or of giving or taking offence.” The copy of the revelation made by Samuel Smith and Orson Hyde has “accusation” rather than “occation.” (“Occasion,” in Oxford English Dictionary, 7:42; Hyde and Smith, Notebook, [40]; see also Daniel 6:4; and Judges 14:4.)  


against him without a cause nevertheless  he hath sinned but verily I say unto you I the Lord forgiveth  sins unto those who confess their sins before me & ask forgiveness  who have not sinned unto death7

See 1 John 5:16–17.  


my Deciples in days of old  sought occasion8

The Samuel Smith and Orson Hyde copy of the revelation has “accusation” rather than “occasion.” (Hyde and Smith, Notebook, [40].)  


against one an other & forgave not one an  other in their hearts9

The New Testament gospels recount arguments among the disciples regarding who among them was greater. (See Luke 9:46; 22:24; and Mark 9:33–34.)  


& for this evil they were afflicted & sorely  chastened wherefore I say unto you that ye had ought to forgive one  another for he that forgiveth not his brother his tresspasses stand eth condemned before the Lord for there remaineth in him the  greater sin I the Lord will forgive whom I will forgive but  of you it is required to forgive all men & ye had ought to say  in your hearts let God Judge between me & thee10

See 1 Samuel 24:12, 15.  


& reward thee  according to thy deeds & he that repenteth not of his sins & confess  them not then ye ye shall bring him before the church & do  with him as the Scriptures direct Saith unto you either by comm andment

Generally, a divine mandate that church members were expected to obey; more specifically, a text dictated by JS in the first-person voice of Deity that served to communicate knowledge and instruction to JS and his followers. Occasionally, other inspired texts...

View Glossary
or <by> revelation11

See Articles and Covenants, ca. Apr. 1830 [D&C 20:80, 83]; and Revelation, 23 Feb. 1831 [D&C 42:74–93].  


& this ye shall do that God might be glorif ied not because ye forgive not having not compassion but that  ye may be Justified12

The Samuel Smith and Orson Hyde copy of the revelation has “faithful” instead of “Justified.” (Hyde and Smith, Notebook, [40].)  


in the eyes of the law that ye may not  offend him who is your lawgiver verily I say for this cause  ye shall do these things Behold I the Lord was angery with  him who was my Servent Ezra [Booth]

14 Feb. 1792–before 12 Jan. 1873. Farmer, minister. Born in Newtown, Fairfield Co., Connecticut. Admitted on trial to Methodist ministry, 4 Sept. 1816, and stationed in the Ohio District in Beaver, Pike Co. Admitted into full connection and elected a deacon...

View Full Bio
& also my Servent Isaac [Morley]

11 Mar. 1786–24 June 1865. Farmer, cooper, merchant, postmaster. Born at Montague, Hampshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Thomas Morley and Editha (Edith) Marsh. Family affiliated with Presbyterian church. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, before 1812. Married...

View Full Bio
for  they kept not the Law neither the commandment they sought  evil in their hearts & I the Lord withheld my spirit13

A copy of this revelation, made by John Whitmer for Newel K. Whitney around the same time as the Revelation Book 1 copy, includes the words “from them” at this point. (Revelation, 11 Sept. 1831, Newel K. Whitney, Papers [D&C 64].)  


they condem ned for evil that thing in which there was no evil14

A June 1831 revelation assigned Booth and Morley to travel to Missouri together, “preaching the word by the way.” Booth later complained that the Spirit did not enable him to speak with as great “liberty” as he expected on this trip. Exactly how Booth and Morley had defied the February 1831 revelation known as the “Laws of the Church of Christ” is unclear. (Revelation, 6 June 1831 [D&C 52:23]; Ezra Booth, “Mormonism—No. V,” Ohio Star [Ravenna], 10 Nov. 1831, [3]; Revelation, 9 Feb. 1831 [D&C 42:1–73]; Revelation, 23 Feb. 1831 [D&C 42:74–93].)  


nevertheless  I have forgiven my Servent Isaac

11 Mar. 1786–24 June 1865. Farmer, cooper, merchant, postmaster. Born at Montague, Hampshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Thomas Morley and Editha (Edith) Marsh. Family affiliated with Presbyterian church. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, before 1812. Married...

View Full Bio
& also my Servent Edward [Partridge]

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

View Full Bio
 Behold he hath sinned & Satan Seeketh to destroy his soul but  when these things are made known unto them they repenteth [p. 109]
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JS dictated a revelation in Kirtland

Located ten miles south of Lake Erie. Settled by 1811. Organized by 1818. Population in 1830 about 55 Latter-day Saints and 1,000 others; in 1838 about 2,000 Saints and 1,200 others; in 1839 about 100 Saints and 1,500 others. Mormon missionaries visited township...

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, Ohio, on 11 September 1831, just a few days after arriving back from Independence

Located twelve miles from western Missouri border. Permanently settled, platted, and designated county seat, 1827. Hub for steamboat travel on Missouri River. Point of departure for Santa Fe Trail. Population in 1831 about 300. Mormon population by summer...

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, Jackson County, Missouri. Although the Missouri

Area acquired by U.S. in Louisiana Purchase, 1803, and established as territory, 1812. Missouri Compromise, 1820, admitted Missouri as slave state, 1821. Population in 1830 about 140,000; in 1836 about 240,000; and in 1840 about 380,000. Mormon missionaries...

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trip involved the identification of the site for the city of Zion

Also referred to as New Jerusalem. JS revelation, dated Sept. 1830, prophesied that “city of Zion” would be built among Lamanites (American Indians). JS directed Oliver Cowdery and other missionaries preaching among American Indians in Missouri to find location...

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and the dedication of land for the construction of a temple

JS revelation, dated 20 July 1831, directed temple to be built short distance west of courthouse on hill just outside of Independence, Missouri. JS directed dedication of temple site by Sidney Rigdon, 3 Aug. 1831. On same date, church claimed site for eventual...

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, it generated disappointment and disillusionment for some.1

JS History, vol. A-1, 139; Revelation, 20 July 1831 [D&C 57:2–3].  


Despite high expectations, Oliver Cowdery

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

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and his companions had been unsuccessful in their attempts to preach to the American Indians, or “Lamanites

A term used in the Book of Mormon to refer to the descendants or followers of Laman, as well as those who later identified themselves as Lamanites because they did not believe in the religious traditions of their ancestors. According to JS and the Book of...

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,” west of the Missouri border. Their subsequent efforts among the white population of Jackson County

Settled at Fort Osage, 1808. County created, 16 Feb. 1825; organized 1826. Named after U.S. president Andrew Jackson. Featured fertile lands along Missouri River and was Santa Fe Trail departure point, which attracted immigrants to area. Area of county reduced...

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, Missouri, yielded little success.2

Letter from Oliver Cowdery, 8 Apr. 1831; Richard W. Cummins, Delaware and Shawnee Agency, to William Clark, [St. Louis, MO], 15 Feb. 1831, U.S. Office of Indian Affairs, Central Superintendency, Records, vol. 6, pp. 113–114; Whitmer, Journal, Dec. 1831, [1]; Ezra Booth, “Mormonism—No. V,” Ohio Star (Ravenna), 10 Nov. 1831, [3].  


Disappointment also stemmed from the designation of Independence, a rough frontier village, as the “centre place” for the city of Zion.3

Revelation, 20 July 1831 [D&C 57: 2–3] ]; Edward Partridge, Independence, MO, to Lydia Clisbee Partridge, 5–7 Aug. 1831, Edward Partridge, Letters, 1831–1835, CHL.  


Ezra Booth

14 Feb. 1792–before 12 Jan. 1873. Farmer, minister. Born in Newtown, Fairfield Co., Connecticut. Admitted on trial to Methodist ministry, 4 Sept. 1816, and stationed in the Ohio District in Beaver, Pike Co. Admitted into full connection and elected a deacon...

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, one of the elders

A male leader in the church generally; an ecclesiastical and priesthood office or one holding that office; a proselytizing missionary. The Book of Mormon explained that elders ordained priests and teachers and administered “the flesh and blood of Christ unto...

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called to travel to Missouri in the summer of 1831, also expressed disillusionment with JS himself. Booth complained that he and his companion, Isaac Morley

11 Mar. 1786–24 June 1865. Farmer, cooper, merchant, postmaster. Born at Montague, Hampshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Thomas Morley and Editha (Edith) Marsh. Family affiliated with Presbyterian church. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, before 1812. Married...

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, had to walk to Missouri while JS, Sidney Rigdon

19 Feb. 1793–14 July 1876. Tanner, farmer, minister. Born at St. Clair, Allegheny Co., Pennsylvania. Son of William Rigdon and Nancy Gallaher. Joined United Baptists, ca. 1818. Preached at Warren, Trumbull Co., Ohio, and vicinity, 1819–1821. Married Phebe...

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, and other church leaders traveled by way of stagecoach and canal.4

Ezra Booth, “Mormonism—No. V,” Ohio Star (Ravenna), 10 Nov. 1831, [3]; Ezra Booth, “Mormonism—No. VII,” Ohio Star, 24 Nov. 1831, [1].  


Apparently, Booth witnessed a confrontation between Edward Partridge

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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and JS over the quality of Missouri land selected for purchase. Booth believed that JS’s conduct in these disagreements was unbecoming a Christian.5

Ezra Booth, “Mormonism—No. VII,” Ohio Star (Ravenna), 24 Nov. 1831, [1].  


Rigdon, likely referring to the same incident, placed the blame on Partridge, stating he had “insulted the Lord’s prophet in particular & assumed authority over him in open violation of the Laws of God.”6 Partridge was later penitent: the same minutes that contain Rigdon’s accusation record Partridge saying that “if Br. Joseph has not forgiven him he hopes he will, as he is & has always been sorry.”7

Minute Book 2, 10 Mar. 1832.  


Booth, on the other hand, apparently became more resentful, and a conference

A meeting where ecclesiastical officers and other church members could conduct church business. The “Articles and Covenants” of the church directed the elders to hold conferences to perform “Church business.” The first of these conferences was held on 9 June...

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barred him from preaching as an elder in the church on 6 September 1831.8
A week later, this 11 September revelation expounded on the necessity of forgiveness and specifically referred to problems involving Booth

14 Feb. 1792–before 12 Jan. 1873. Farmer, minister. Born in Newtown, Fairfield Co., Connecticut. Admitted on trial to Methodist ministry, 4 Sept. 1816, and stationed in the Ohio District in Beaver, Pike Co. Admitted into full connection and elected a deacon...

View Full Bio
, Morley

11 Mar. 1786–24 June 1865. Farmer, cooper, merchant, postmaster. Born at Montague, Hampshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Thomas Morley and Editha (Edith) Marsh. Family affiliated with Presbyterian church. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, before 1812. Married...

View Full Bio
, and Partridge

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

View Full Bio
, indicating that the latter two were forgiven for their sins. It also discussed preparations for the gathering to Missouri

Area acquired by U.S. in Louisiana Purchase, 1803, and established as territory, 1812. Missouri Compromise, 1820, admitted Missouri as slave state, 1821. Population in 1830 about 140,000; in 1836 about 240,000; and in 1840 about 380,000. Mormon missionaries...

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. The revelation clarified the relationship between Kirtland

Located ten miles south of Lake Erie. Settled by 1811. Organized by 1818. Population in 1830 about 55 Latter-day Saints and 1,000 others; in 1838 about 2,000 Saints and 1,200 others; in 1839 about 100 Saints and 1,500 others. Mormon missionaries visited township...

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and Missouri: a previous revelation had established Independence

Located twelve miles from western Missouri border. Permanently settled, platted, and designated county seat, 1827. Hub for steamboat travel on Missouri River. Point of departure for Santa Fe Trail. Population in 1831 about 300. Mormon population by summer...

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as the “centre place”9

Revelation, 20 July 1831 [D&C 57:3].  


at which to build the city of Zion

Also referred to as New Jerusalem. JS revelation, dated Sept. 1830, prophesied that “city of Zion” would be built among Lamanites (American Indians). JS directed Oliver Cowdery and other missionaries preaching among American Indians in Missouri to find location...

More Info
, and this revelation declared that Kirtland, where the Saints had previously gathered, would remain “a strong hold” for five years. It also indentified what property should be retained in Kirtland. Portraying a bright future for the land of Zion, the revelation offered encouragement to those who remained committed to the mission and leadership of JS.
The original manuscript of the revelation is not extant. John Whitmer

27 Aug. 1802–11 July 1878. Farmer, stock raiser, newspaper editor. Born in Pennsylvania. Son of Peter Whitmer Sr. and Mary Musselman. Member of German Reformed Church, Fayette, Seneca Co., New York. Baptized by Oliver Cowdery, June 1829, most likely in Seneca...

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copied the revelation into Revelation Book 1 probably soon after its dictation, calling it “Directions to the Elders &c &c.” Sidney Gilbert

28 Dec. 1789–29 June 1834. Merchant. Born at New Haven, New Haven Co., Connecticut. Son of Eli Gilbert and Lydia Hemingway. Moved to Huntington, Fairfield Co., Connecticut; to Monroe, Monroe Co., Michigan Territory, by Sept. 1818; to Painesville, Geauga Co...

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also made a copy, dating the revelation 12 September 1831.10

Gilbert, Notebook, [54].  


Although JS held a conference of elders on 12 September—an appropriate setting for dictating a revelation11

See Minutes, 12 Sept. 1831. The minutes do not indicate that any revelation was dictated at the meeting.  


—all other manuscript copies bear the same 11 September date as the version of the text featured here.12

See, for example, Revelation, 11 Sept. 1831, Newel K. Whitney, Papers [D&C 64]; and Hyde and Smith, Notebook, [43].  


Facts