31827

Revelation, 13 August 1831 [D&C 62]

651

John Whitmer assigned this number to the revelation when recording it in Revelation Book 1.  


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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given Aug 13th. 1831 on the Bank of the river Missorie

One of longest rivers in North America, in excess of 3,000 miles. From headwaters in Montana to confluence with Mississippi River near St. Louis, Missouri River drains 580,000 square miles (about one-sixth of continental U.S.). Explored by Lewis and Clark...

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at a meeting of some 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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which had not yet arived at their Journeys end &c
Behold & hearken oh ye Elders 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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saith the Lord your God even Jesus Christ your advocate who knoweth the weakness of man & how to sucour they that are tempted3

See Hebrews 2:18.  


& verily mine eyes are upon those who have not as yet gone up unto the Land of Zion

A specific location in Missouri; also a literal or figurative gathering of believers in Jesus Christ, characterized by adherence to ideals of harmony, equality, and purity. In JS’s earliest revelations “the cause of Zion” was used to broadly describe the ...

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4

Although this is a clear reference to John Murdock, Hyrum Smith, Harvey Whitlock, and David Whitmer, who were present at this revelation’s dictation, it apparently also applied to other elders traveling to Missouri, including Zebedee Coltrin and Levi Hancock. Coltrin and Hancock were shown the revelation when they arrived in Independence, Jackson County, Missouri, in late 1831. (“Autobiography of Levi Ward Hancock,” ca. 1896, 40–41.)  


wherefore your mission is not yet full nevertheless ye are blessed for the testimony which ye have borne is recorded in heaven for the Angels to look upon5

For examples of these testimonies, see Murdock, Journal, June 1831; and “Autobiography of Levi Ward Hancock,” 27–40.  


& they rejoice over you & your sins are forgiven you & now continue your Journey assemble yourselves upon the land of Zion & hold a meeting & rejoice together6

This instruction reiterates direction given in an August 1831 revelation. (Revelation, 1 Aug. 1831 [D&C 58:61–62].)  


& offer a sacrament

Primarily referred to the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper, or Communion, as opposed to other religious sacraments. The “Articles and Covenants” of the church directed “that the church meet together often to partake of bread and wine in remembrance of the Lord...

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unto the most high7

The elders held a conference in Kaw Township, Missouri, on 24 August 1831 “to fill the commandment which they received at Charatin.” According to William E. McLellin, the conference “offer[ed] a sacrament to the most High.” The 2 August date of the minutes as recorded in Minute Book 2 is in error. The meeting was held on 24 August, as McLellin’s journal relates. Several of the individuals listed in the minutes as attending, including McLellin, David Whitmer, Hyrum Smith, and Harvey Whitlock, were not in Jackson County on 2 August. (McLellin, Journal, 24 Aug. 1831; see also Minute Book 2, 2 Aug. 1831; and Revelation, 7 Aug. 1831 [D&C 59:12].)  


& then you may return to bear record8

See Revelation, 1 Aug. 1831 [D&C 58:59, 63].  


yea even all together or two by two as seemeth you good it mattereth not unto me9

John Murdock, Hyrum Smith, Harvey Whitlock, and David Whitmer traveled to Independence together. Smith and Whitmer apparently traveled back to Ohio in September, though whether they went together is not certain. Both men were listed as attending conferences in Ohio in October 1831. Murdock stayed in Missouri until 26 January 1832, when he departed with Parley P. Pratt, Lyman Wight, and Levi Hancock on a preaching mission. When Whitlock departed is not known, but he was still in Missouri in January 1832. (Murdock, Journal, Aug. 1831 and Jan. 1832; Minutes, 25–26 Oct. 1831; Minutes, 11 Oct. 1831; see also Letter from Oliver Cowdery, 28 Jan. 1832.)  


only be faithfull & declare glad tidings unto the inhabitants of the Earth or among the Congregations of the wicked Behold I the Lord have brought you together that the promise might be fulfilled that the faithfull among you should be preserved & rejoice together in the Land of Missorie

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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10

See Revelation, 6 June 1831 [D&C 52:42].  


I the Lord promised the faithfull, & cannot lie I the Lord am willing if any among you desireth to ride upon horses or upon mules or in chariots shall receive this blessing11

John Murdock, Hyrum Smith, Harvey Whitlock, and David Whitmer subsequently purchased a horse that Murdock rode because he was still ill. (Murdock, Journal, Aug. 1831.)  


if he receive it from the hand of the Lord with a thankfull hearts in all things these things remain with you to do according to Judgement & the directions of the spirit12

The 1 August 1831 revelation told the elders to “do many things of their own free will” because “the power is in them wherein they are agents unto themselves.” (Revelation, 1 Aug. 1831 [D&C 58:26–28].)  


Behold the kingdom is yours13

See Revelation, 7 Dec. 1830 [D&C 35:27]; and Revelation, 2 Jan. 1831 [D&C 38:9, 15].  


And Behold & lo I am with the faithfull always even so Amen—— [p. 104]
651

John Whitmer assigned this number to the revelation when recording it in Revelation Book 1.  


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...

View Glossary
given Aug 13th. 1831  on the Bank of the river Missorie

One of longest rivers in North America, in excess of 3,000 miles. From headwaters in Montana to confluence with Mississippi River near St. Louis, Missouri River drains 580,000 square miles (about one-sixth of continental U.S.). Explored by Lewis and Clark...

More Info
at a meeting of  some 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...

View Glossary
which had not yet arived at their Journeys end &c2

TEXT: “&c” possibly inserted at a later time. This heading likely did not appear in the original manuscript; John Whitmer likely added it when he copied the revelation into Revelation Book 1.  


Behold & hearken oh ye Elders 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
saith the Lord your  God even Jesus Christ your advocate who knoweth the weakness  of man & how to sucour they that are tempted3

See Hebrews 2:18.  


& verily mine eyes  are upon you those who have not as yet gone up unto the Land of  Zion

A specific location in Missouri; also a literal or figurative gathering of believers in Jesus Christ, characterized by adherence to ideals of harmony, equality, and purity. In JS’s earliest revelations “the cause of Zion” was used to broadly describe the ...

View Glossary
4

Although this is a clear reference to John Murdock, Hyrum Smith, Harvey Whitlock, and David Whitmer, who were present at this revelation’s dictation, it apparently also applied to other elders traveling to Missouri, including Zebedee Coltrin and Levi Hancock. Coltrin and Hancock were shown the revelation when they arrived in Independence, Jackson County, Missouri, in late 1831. (“Autobiography of Levi Ward Hancock,” ca. 1896, 40–41.)  


wherefore your mission is not yet full nevertheless ye are blessed  for the testimony which ye have borne is recorded in heaven for the  Angels to look upon5

For examples of these testimonies, see Murdock, Journal, June 1831; and “Autobiography of Levi Ward Hancock,” 27–40.  


& they rejoice over you & your sins are forgiven  you & now continue your Journey assemble yourselves upon the  land of Zion & hold a meeting & rejoice together6

This instruction reiterates direction given in an August 1831 revelation. (Revelation, 1 Aug. 1831 [D&C 58:61–62].)  


& offer a sacrament

Primarily referred to the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper, or Communion, as opposed to other religious sacraments. The “Articles and Covenants” of the church directed “that the church meet together often to partake of bread and wine in remembrance of the Lord...

View Glossary
 unto the most high7

The elders held a conference in Kaw Township, Missouri, on 24 August 1831 “to fill the commandment which they received at Charatin.” According to William E. McLellin, the conference “offer[ed] a sacrament to the most High.” The 2 August date of the minutes as recorded in Minute Book 2 is in error. The meeting was held on 24 August, as McLellin’s journal relates. Several of the individuals listed in the minutes as attending, including McLellin, David Whitmer, Hyrum Smith, and Harvey Whitlock, were not in Jackson County on 2 August. (McLellin, Journal, 24 Aug. 1831; see also Minute Book 2, 2 Aug. 1831; and Revelation, 7 Aug. 1831 [D&C 59:12].)  


& then you may return to bear record8

See Revelation, 1 Aug. 1831 [D&C 58:59, 63].  


yea even  all together or two by two as seemeth you good it mattereth not unto  me9

John Murdock, Hyrum Smith, Harvey Whitlock, and David Whitmer traveled to Independence together. Smith and Whitmer apparently traveled back to Ohio in September, though whether they went together is not certain. Both men were listed as attending conferences in Ohio in October 1831. Murdock stayed in Missouri until 26 January 1832, when he departed with Parley P. Pratt, Lyman Wight, and Levi Hancock on a preaching mission. When Whitlock departed is not known, but he was still in Missouri in January 1832. (Murdock, Journal, Aug. 1831 and Jan. 1832; Minutes, 25–26 Oct. 1831; Minutes, 11 Oct. 1831; see also Letter from Oliver Cowdery, 28 Jan. 1832.)  


only be faithfull & declare glad tidings unto the inhabitants  of the Earth or among the Congregations of the wicked Behold I  the Lord have brought you together that the promise might be  fulfilled that the faithfull among you should be preserved &  rejoice together in the Land of Missorie

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...

More Info
10

See Revelation, 6 June 1831 [D&C 52:42].  


I the Lord promised the  faithfull, & cannot lie I the Lord am willing if any among  you desireth to ride upon horses or upon mules or in chariots  shall receive this blessing11

John Murdock, Hyrum Smith, Harvey Whitlock, and David Whitmer subsequently purchased a horse that Murdock rode because he was still ill. (Murdock, Journal, Aug. 1831.)  


if he receive it from the hand of the  Lord with <a> thankfullness hearts in all things these things remain  with you to do according to Judgement & the directions of the spirit12

The 1 August 1831 revelation told the elders to “do many things of their own free will” because “the power is in them wherein they are agents unto themselves.” (Revelation, 1 Aug. 1831 [D&C 58:26–28].)  


 Behold the kingdom is yours13

See Revelation, 7 Dec. 1830 [D&C 35:27]; and Revelation, 2 Jan. 1831 [D&C 38:9, 15].  


And Behold & lo I am with the  faithfull always even so Amen—— [p. 104]
On 13 August 1831, as JS and several 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...

View Glossary
were on their way back to Ohio

French explored area, 1669. British took possession following French and Indian War, 1763. Ceded to U.S., 1783. First permanent white settlement established, 1788. Northeastern portion maintained as part of Connecticut, 1786, and called Connecticut Western...

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after spending a few weeks in 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, JS dictated this revelation outlining the responsibilities of elders traveling 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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who had not yet reached the land of Zion

A specific location in Missouri; also a literal or figurative gathering of believers in Jesus Christ, characterized by adherence to ideals of harmony, equality, and purity. In JS’s earliest revelations “the cause of Zion” was used to broadly describe the ...

View Glossary
.1

JS History, vol. A-1, 142, 145.  


At this time, some elders commanded to journey to Missouri had been delayed, in part because of their efforts to preach along the way and in part because of illness.2

See, for example, Murdock, Journal, Aug. 1831; “Autobiography of Levi Ward Hancock,” ca. 1896, 27–40; and Whitmer, History, 32.  


John Murdock

15 July 1792–23 Dec. 1871. Farmer. Born at Kortright, Delaware Co., New York. Son of John Murdock Sr. and Eleanor Riggs. Joined Lutheran Dutch Church, ca. 1817, then Presbyterian Seceder Church shortly after. Moved to Orange, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, ca. 1819....

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and Hyrum Smith

9 Feb. 1800–27 June 1844. Farmer, cooper. Born at Tunbridge, Orange Co., Vermont. Son of Joseph Smith Sr. and Lucy Mack. Moved to Randolph, Orange Co., 1802; to Tunbridge, before May 1803; to Royalton, Windsor Co., Vermont, 1804; to Sharon, Windsor Co., by...

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, for example, were instructed in a June 1831 revelation to go to Missouri by way of Detroit

Port city located between west end of Lake Erie and Lake St. Clair. State capital and county seat. French first visited site, ca. 1610, and established settlement and fort, by 1701. Britain obtained possession, 1760. Became part of U.S. territory, 1783. First...

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, Michigan Territory.3

Revelation, 6 June 1831 [D&C 52:8–9].  


They followed this direction but were delayed when Murdock fell ill in the first part of August. Murdock and Hyrum Smith spent a week in Chariton, Chariton County, Missouri, while Murdock recovered, and were soon joined by David Whitmer

7 Jan. 1805–25 Jan. 1888. Farmer, livery keeper. Born near Harrisburg, Dauphin Co., Pennsylvania. Son of Peter Whitmer Sr. and Mary Musselman. Raised Presbyterian. Moved to Ontario Co., New York, shortly after birth. Attended German Reformed Church. Arranged...

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and Harvey Whitlock

1809–after 1880. Physician. Born in Massachusetts. Married Minerva Abbott, 21 Nov. 1830. Baptized into LDS church, 1831. Ordained an elder, by June 1831. Ordained a high priest, 4 June 1831. Served mission to Jackson Co., Missouri, with David Whitmer, 1831...

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, who were also en route to Independence.4

Murdock, Journal, Aug. 1831.  


In anticipation of the arrival of these missionaries, a 1 August revelation had instructed “the residue of the Elders of this church which are coming to this land” to “hold a conference” in 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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once they arrived.5

Revelation, 1 Aug. 1831 [D&C 58:61].  


On 13 August, JS and his companions crossed the Missouri River

One of longest rivers in North America, in excess of 3,000 miles. From headwaters in Montana to confluence with Mississippi River near St. Louis, Missouri River drains 580,000 square miles (about one-sixth of continental U.S.). Explored by Lewis and Clark...

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at Chariton and found Murdock

15 July 1792–23 Dec. 1871. Farmer. Born at Kortright, Delaware Co., New York. Son of John Murdock Sr. and Eleanor Riggs. Joined Lutheran Dutch Church, ca. 1817, then Presbyterian Seceder Church shortly after. Moved to Orange, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, ca. 1819....

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, Hyrum Smith

9 Feb. 1800–27 June 1844. Farmer, cooper. Born at Tunbridge, Orange Co., Vermont. Son of Joseph Smith Sr. and Lucy Mack. Moved to Randolph, Orange Co., 1802; to Tunbridge, before May 1803; to Royalton, Windsor Co., Vermont, 1804; to Sharon, Windsor Co., by...

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, Whitmer

7 Jan. 1805–25 Jan. 1888. Farmer, livery keeper. Born near Harrisburg, Dauphin Co., Pennsylvania. Son of Peter Whitmer Sr. and Mary Musselman. Raised Presbyterian. Moved to Ontario Co., New York, shortly after birth. Attended German Reformed Church. Arranged...

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, and Whitlock

1809–after 1880. Physician. Born in Massachusetts. Married Minerva Abbott, 21 Nov. 1830. Baptized into LDS church, 1831. Ordained an elder, by June 1831. Ordained a high priest, 4 June 1831. Served mission to Jackson Co., Missouri, with David Whitmer, 1831...

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there. “After the joyful salutations with which brethren meet each other,” a later history recounted, JS dictated the present revelation.6

JS History, vol. A-1, 145; see also Cahoon, Diary, Aug. 1831; and McLellin, Journal, 15 and 24 Aug. 1831.  


The copy of the revelation made by 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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locates the revelation “on the Bank of the river Missorie,” likely meaning the northern bank, at Chariton. The revelation instructed those elders to continue to Zion

A specific location in Missouri; also a literal or figurative gathering of believers in Jesus Christ, characterized by adherence to ideals of harmony, equality, and purity. In JS’s earliest revelations “the cause of Zion” was used to broadly describe the ...

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, to hold a meeting there, and then to return to their homes.
The original manuscript of this 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 text featured here into Revelation Book 1, probably shortly after 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 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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returned to 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, at the end of August.7

See Historical Introduction to Revelation Book 1; and JS History, vol. A-1, 146.  


Some personal copies of the revelation were also made, including a copy Elizabeth Van Benthusen Gilbert showed to Levi Hancock

7 Apr. 1803–10 June 1882. Born at Springfield, Hampden Co., Massachusetts. Son of Thomas Hancock III and Amy Ward. Baptized into LDS church, 16 Nov. 1830, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Clarissa Reed, 20 Mar. 1831. Served mission to Missouri with ...

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when he came to 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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in late 1831.8

According to Hancock’s account, when the Saints in Jackson County saw a copy of this revelation—probably brought to them by one of the four elders to whom it was directed—it “tried” their faith. The revelation’s contents, which included commendations of those who had borne testimony and which implied high expectations for proselytizing success, apparently struck the Missouri Saints as incongruous with the results of the elders’ preaching. As Elizabeth Van Benthusen Gilbert explained to Hancock, “Their faith almost failed them because they had heard that nothing was done.” In reference to the elders, she said that “many had appostatized.” After Hancock, Zebedee Coltrin, Simeon Carter, and Solomon Hancock arrived later in the fall with news that they had baptized over a hundred individuals, the “drooping Spirits” of the Missouri saints were “revived.” (“Autobiography of Levi Ward Hancock,” ca. 1896, 40–41; see also History of the Reorganized Church, 1:195; and Minutes, 1 Sept. 1831.)  


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